So My Son Wants to Become a Writer

My son is turning into a writer. And that is a good thing.
I mean, there are easier ways to live a life. “Get a job,” I could say, “a good paying job that has benefits and health insurance. Always insist on the health insurance.” Or I could list the benefits of submerging in corporate America, with its six-figure executive paychecks and winner-winner-chicken-dinner mentality. Success there seems so easy to measure.
The truth is, the writing path is one of heartbreak and insecurity.
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To read my entire guest post about whether or not I discourage my son from becoming a writer, head over to Southern Writers Magazine.

The Work Waiting Does In Us


For three months I’ve been waiting for something. You probably know what it’s like. You’ve waited, too, for many crucial (and not so crucial) things: a final diagnosis, an offer, a closing date, a yes or no, a call back, word on that promotion or potential adoption. Waiting to become pregnant. Waiting for your children to grow up. Waiting for retirement.


I’m nearly forty now, neither young nor old, but I know this: I could spend my whole life obsessing over THAT THING I’m currently waiting for. Because the waiting? The searching? The wondering?

It never ends.

This is a guest post that I wrote for Emily Freeman. You can check out the rest of it by clicking HERE.

The Secret Power of Shrimp Vindaloo


On our first return to England from the U.S., we made the mistake of giving in to jet lag. On that particular trip, we arrived at our Wendover home and slept all day, a gorgeous, indulgent, heavy sleep that felt more like drowning. We slept from 10am until 4pm in the afternoon.

But that day of sleep had disastrous consequences. For the next three weeks, we could not turn the clock around. We were awake all night, groggy all day. I almost fell asleep in meetings. I watched 2am turn to 3am turn to 4am. We vowed to never do it again. We could be disciplined. We could stay awake until bedtime.

Then we arrived home from the US on the next trip, exhausted and blurry-eyed.

This is a post I wrote for the wonderful site, You Are Here. You can find out how Indian food helped us overcome our jetlag HERE.

It’s a Relief, and It’s a Sorrow, the Way These Places Wait For Us


It is a relief to me, and it is a sorrow, the way these places wait for us to come back, the way they welcome us as if nothing important has been lost. And we go about our business, trying not to look directly at the empty space that once held a crucial thing: an old oak tree, or a fishing buddy.

I tell my children to cast in the line one last time. I fix my stare on the small plastic bobber, and I pretend that nothing has changed.

To read this post in its entirety, head over to You Are Here.

Why You Should Tell Your Story Now, In the Middle

Photo by Volkan Olmez via Unsplash

A few months ago my wife peeked her head around the corner and asked me one of the last questions I expected her to ask.

“So, are you ready for baby number six?” she asked, her unblinking eyes wide open.

“Really?” I asked.

She nodded. I took a deep breath.

“Really?” I asked again. “Are you sure?”

The question then became, “When do we tell the kids?” We knew our other children would be ecstatic to learn there was another baby on the way, but Maile had miscarried twice. Should we try to spare them the potential heartache? Or should we tell them and involve them in the unfolding story?

This is part of a post I wrote for You Are Here about the importance of telling our stories in the middle. You can read the rest of it HERE.

When a Stranger Rang Our Doorbell

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A few weeks ago, at around 8pm, our doorbell rang. This is normal, not because we get a lot of nighttime visitors, but because our doorbell rings randomly, even when no one is there. Our next door neighbor passed away about a year ago, so when the doorbell rings at night I usually shout, “Paul’s ghost would like to come in.”

Even so, I still check to see if anyone is actually there.

And on that cold January night a few weeks ago, someone was there. It was Jim. He was bundled up and his eyes were watering from the freezing cold wind and he had his laundry bag over his shoulder.

“Hey, Jim,” I said. “How are you?”

“I’m good, I’m good,” he said. “Do you have a compootah I can use?”

Today I’m posting over at the wonderful site, You Are Here. Click HERE to read the rest of the post.