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Category Archives: Magical moments
February 14, 2018 by Mara Purl
So here was this cute, inventive, self-sufficient creature who was an “index species”—that is, one whose presence was a key to the ecological well-being of its own region. I was liking these furry, sweet-faced critters even more than I thought I would.
July 14, 2014 by Mara Purl
For her final birthday, we planned a unique performance. Mom designed a dress for me to wear, and had her wonderful seamstress make it. A dazzling green organza confection, it made me feel as if I was wearing jade sliced as thin as clouds—and then she gave me her jade jewels to go with it. I knew this would be the last dress she’d ever give me.
August 19, 2013 by Mara Purl
Projects have always been a way of life for the Purls. Sometimes a bane, sometimes a boon, projects define our time and express our various core purposes. That’s what I’ll miss the most, I think—that I won’t get to do the next project with Mom.
July 14, 2013 by Mara Purl
“A Year for Mom” are posts written the year of my mother’s illness and her passing. It had started as one of Mom’s bright ideas. Though she and Pere had been unable to fly to California to see my sister Linda perform the remarkable one-woman show The Year of Magical Thinking, she imagined that, somehow, the show could come to her. Read more
November 2, 2012 by Mara Purl
Mara Purl guests on Author Kathy Holmes' website where they discuss California Girl fiction, real women, and how true life experience evolves into transformative women's fiction.
September 21, 2012 by Mara Purl
Writing is tough. It takes hours, weeks, months, years of solitude and focus. It requires “killing your darlings”—a writer-term for throwing out your favorite passages. It means wrestling with characters, struggling with storylines and remembering why the heck you’re putting yourself through all this torment in the first place. Then there are days when writing is just plain fun. For me, this often occurs when I get do a research field trip. I’m not entirely stupid about this—I choose favorite locations where my story just happens to take place. So I got to spend today in Morro Bay, one of the most delightful spots along California’s gorgeous Central Coast.… Read more
November 28, 2011 by Mara Purl
I think as a child I probably loved Thanksgiving because of the future—it meant Christmas was coming soon! It was also a holiday I anticipated with great joy because it meant we’d go visit Grandma Dorothy. She married my step-grandfather late in life—but just in time for my sister and me to adore her. The house she shared with “Daddy Bob” was a classic New England cottage in Waterbury, Connecticut. Cape-Cod-Blue with white trim, it stood erect despite the steep street that seemed to slice under it.… Read more
November 21, 2011 by Mara Purl
Well, if Pie-In-The-Sky describes what can’t come true, perhaps “Mile High Tea” should be the new descriptor for what can. Why? Because anything Judith Briles touches actually does turn to gold. Judith was my hostess this past weekend for a gorgeous, elaborate and delightful tea at the lovely home where she and her husband, poet and editor John Maling, love to entertain.
So what do I mean by “gold”?… Read more
November 7, 2011 by Mara Purl
Sometimes an evening with female colleagues is a rite of passage, a kind of test a woman can only pass by showing her authenticity. And sometimes a girlfriend-evening fulfills a basic need for time with those who share the same wiring.
Actually women have all kinds of ways of connecting. Sometimes the moments are brief—a quick lunch hour to catch up with a friend or get to know someone better. Other times it might be a special treat like afternoon tea—a chance to dress up and go someplace elegant, where the surroundings are inspiring enough to give us a fresh perspective.… Read more
November 1, 2011 by Mara Purl
Perhaps cracking the cover on an unknown book is something like opening the door to strange children on Halloween. “Trick or Treat” they cry. We consider it mostly an idle threat, because we know if we’ve opened the door at all, we’re going to deliver a treat, and therefore not expect to be tricked. And perhaps this is analogous to shelling out our twenty-five dollars for a hardcover book: we expect to receive a treat and we don’t expect to be tricked.
But what’s the point of fiction? Is it to trick the reader into thinking that the characters they’re reading about and the circumstances in which they find themselves are real?… Read more