How Not to be a Recluse

I have a picture of my grandmother on my refrigerator  She’s sitting at her writing desk and even though she died years ago I keep it there as a reminder of the lonely life of the writer, sitting there alone at her desk, just her and the words. This has always had appeal to me, since I find people overwhelming and often frightening to be around. BUT I’m discovering that this image of isolation is only one part of living the life of a writer. Turns out writers talk to one another all the time. They exchange their work. Sometimes they eat sandwiches together.

What does this have to do with nature under our feet?

As I mentioned in another post, I went to Melbourne for a writers’ conference. Before I left, I offered to write a blog post about the conference for Brevity. I wrote it (alone in my hotel room) and a fashion photographer read the post and invited me (via my Goodreads profile) to submit a brief essay for an upcoming issue of I.T. POST, a fashion magazine. Of course I said yes. The topic focus for the series of essays that pepper the magazine full of gorgeous people dressed in fabulous clothes and photographed in evocative scenes was perseverance.

And there is the link to nature…specifically trees…specifically bristlecone pine trees, the oldest living thing on the planet (and the subject of my latest (second) tattoo. It makes my thigh feel young by comparison).

The other day I picked up a heavy package from FedEx and opened it in the parking lot. I sat (alone with my delight) and marveled at the power of human connection. On my own, impersonating my grandmother, I would never have published an essay about trees in a  fashion magazine. I couldn’t even have imagined it.

So huge thanks to the Bedell NonFictioNow 2012 conference crew who included me in the presentation line-up in Melbourne,  David Shields and the many other speakers who made me wonder if writing is indeed better than sex, Dinty Moore and Brevity for posting these musings and to photographer Kwannam Chu for including me in the beautiful magazine I.T. POST. (I scanned these images at home, so any quality issues are mine. The magazine is graphically impeccable.)

I.T. Post cover top

I.T. Post cover top

perserverence of trees article copy

I.T. Post cover bottom

I.T. Post cover bottom


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