I remember the first book I ever read. It was a gift from my aunt, who visited my sickbed with a copy of Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott. I was eleven years old, flu-ridden, tortured by tedium, and desperate for diversion. Tentatively, I fingered the book’s pages, and the story opened its arms and drew me into the mahogany-paneled great hall of the Boston estate where seven boys of various sizes stood ready to greet their orphan cousin, Rose, of the black ringlets and hooped skirt.
“Rose looked wildly about her as if ready to fly,” I read. The language was strange, so different from the dese and dose of my childhood vernacular. I realized years later that ready-to-fly Rose was not about to spread wings but rather to turn tail and run. The words worked their magic nonetheless. Transported to a strange land, I found myself coming home.
As an adult, I wrote promotional copy and taught English before devoting myself full-time to fiction. I studied creative writing under Gordon Lish at the Fiction Center and participated in workshops sponsored by the University of Iowa and Story Magazine.
My works were accepted for publication in The Examined Life Journal, Romance Magazine, New Realm Magazine, Perspective Literary Magazine, Spark: A Creative Anthology, and elsewhere. One of over 7,000 entrants, I won First Place in the 13th Annual Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition. Ninth-Month Midnight is my debut novella.
What does the future hold? If I’m lucky, I’ll be writing the last sentence of the last page of my latest novel when I close my eyes for the last time.