“S.E.C.R.E.T.” by L. Marie Adeline

It’s been a long time since Cassie Robichaud has felt desired. She was estranged from her alcoholic husband when he crashed his car and died five years ago, and they never really had a healthy relationship in the first place. Since then, her romantic life has sputtered and died.

Read Like a Writer: Join the Club

I’ve contributed to the wonderful Literature and Libation, which is run by my classmate and good friend Oliver Gray. Check out the post, and don’t forget to subscribe to his blog–he’s got some very solid advice for writers! So you want to be a writer? Join the club. The book club, that is. If you are serious about writing, start reading. Whether you want to write fiction or nonfiction, articles or trilogies, you need to be aware of what else is out []

Reading Challenges in 2013

It’s that time of year again: Time to survey the new year ahead of us and dream about all of the wonderful books we’ll read and the places we’ll go. I’m already planning four international and three domestic trips this year, which I’ll be writing about here. And how better to keep entertained on those long flights than with books? Goodreads Reading Goal: 50 Books This year, I’m setting a more reasonable goal for the 2013 Goodreads Reading Challenge: 50 books. After []

Recipe: Beef Stew with Root Vegetables

I’ve adapted this recipe from Dishing Up Maryland, one of my favorite cookbooks. It takes about 3 hours to cook, plus prep time, so this was a weekend project for me. This version of the recipe made enough food for three relatively hungry adults, with one serving left over. Let me know what you think in the comments! Ingredients: 1/2 cup flour (plus 1/4 cup for thickening) 1 tsp salt 1/2 tsp pepper 1 lb stewing beef, cut into 1″ chunks 1/4 []

“Butterfly’s Child” by Angela Davis-Gardner

Angela ­Davis-Gardner’s novel, Butterfly’s Child, begins where Puccini’s opera, “Madame Butterfly,” leaves off. Frank Pinkerton, a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy, has returned to Japan with Kate, his new wife. Cio-Cio-san (Butterfly), his mistress, sees her chance at simultaneous revenge and redemption. She commits suicide, and Benji’s world changes in a moment.

How to Archive Your Documents Like a Pro

We’ve all been there. You accidentally delete an important work project and unthinkingly empty your trash. Your PC succumbs to a virus. Your laptop gets run over by a car. And you sit, numbly, too heartbroken for tears, as you realize that a labor of love—or, at least, tons of time—has been lost forever.

Nakalele Blowhole, Maui’s Most Beautiful and Dangerous Attraction

Jack and I stood on the northernmost tip of Maui as waves crashed against the cliffs far below us and the late-afternoon sun shimmered dazzlingly against the water. We stepped on to a deserted path patched with tufts of grass and wide enough for a Jeep to navigate. We walked slowly, hand in hand, among the lonely lichen-covered rocks. We had heard about a section of the mountain that looked, we were told, like an “Acid War Zone.” The name itself was []

Eight Memoirs I’m Reading This Semester

This semester, I’m taking a class called Readings in Essay and Memoir, so I thought I’d dedicate a post to some of the texts we’ll cover. You’ve probably noticed that memoir is one of my favorite genres. In fact, I’d like to write a memoir, and the second-best way to become a better writer is to read. (The first-best is to actually write.) None of these are new releases, but they represent different styles of memoir and essay writing and I know []

Blogging Resolutions in 2013

Happy new year! In 2012, I had a lot of competing priorities, and sadly I had to stop blogging for a while. I’m still pretty busy, but I’m trying to make my blog a higher priority this year. I miss interacting with all of my bookish friends, and even thinking about blogging regularly again has put a smile on my face.