When do writers become writers? I’ve been thinking about this question a bit especially since I’ve just done two interviews about my new story collection with writers I admire and respect, for literary magazines I love.

I am a writing late bloomer in many ways – I wasn’t imagining stories or writing them in a journal when I was growing up. I was creating characters with my little sister and dressing up a lot as a kid, and I pursued acting from high school until I was 30 which is a kind of story-telling. But I wasn’t putting words on a page.

Maybe writing began for me when I was young and observing the people I loved. Trying to read them and understand what they were feeling and what they really meant. Looking for causality in how our lives – my life – was changing so quickly from age 4 until childhood was over.

My family a year before my father left and 2 years before my mother left

So, even though I wasn’t writing-writing, perhaps I was becoming a writer. I don’t think it matters if writers are born, made, or born/made. Only that we keep writing.

I wrote my first short story as an adult in my mid-30s and if you had told me then that I would have a short story collection out and that I would be doing a reading and signing at the book store where I spent so much time revising work and studying, I don’t know that I would have believed it. But dreams can come true.

Last night I had the pleasure of reading from my new collection Home is a Made-Up Place at my favorite indie bookstore in Seattle, Third Place Books Ravenna. Such a lovely gathering of warm, engaged friends and family who asked questions that helped me reflect in new ways on what drives my interest in writing and thinking about stories.

When the Q&A was over and I was signing copies afterward, I was so happy to learn the bookstore was officially sold out of both my short story collection and my memoir When She Comes Back.

And then we all went downstairs to dig into this delicious book cake.


Thank you to Charlotte Smith Hamrick for inviting me to do this interview about my new collection and big thanks also to Reckon Review!

I’ll be in the NY and Connecticut area for readings on 4/15 and 4/20.

4/15 at The Golden Notebook, Woodstock NY

4/15 at the Butterfield Library, Cold Spring NY

4/20 at the Norwalk Public Library, CT

Registration and more info here.

Wishing you a beautiful Spring with the time that you crave to create in all the ways that feed you.