Flowers that Stink

I like flowers that stink. But then, growing up, I loved the smell of dry cleaning fluid that seeped through my grandparent’s Everyready Cleaners. Driving to their house, when we passed the linseed plant, I’d roll the window to suck in the sickly sweet air. Unwatched, I’d crawl into the back dash of Mamo’s Dodge to get close to the hot cardboard...

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Riding Out A Hurricane

The last several days we’ve been bracing for Hurricane Barry here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast where we have a house near New Orleans (Memphis, New Orleans, and the Gulf Coast—I know, it’s confusing.) Thankfully, we were not much affected, but others further west in Louisiana were. The flooding looks terrible to me, but they’re...

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The Salt Minds

Everyone re-lives the missed opportunities of childhood. My dad re-lived the Morton Salt Campaign. My dad, a business major in college, was presented with a challenge by his marketing professor: come up with a new slogan for Morton Salt. You know the old one: “When it rains, it pours,” designed to get the message across that Morton Salt doesn’t...

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I Assumed You Were Like Me

I wrote a book, and I made an assumption. I assumed you were like me. I assumed that, some nights, as you fall into that state before sleep actually takes you, you startle awake. When that happens, you remember that moment when you quit going to see your grandmother in the nursing home because you were flush with new love and you abandoned her as...

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TRACKING HAPPINESS: Chapter Last

Yes, we have come to the end of our deep dive into the machinations behind TRACKING HAPPINESS: A SOUTHERN CHICKEN ADVENTURE. Read this post slowly. Savor it. After it is over, you can only get more Lucinda by re-reading the book…or listening to it. Perhaps see how my very southern narration impacts your experience of the story. And you can...

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Buy Your Tickets Today!

We’re having a grown-up event at Novel Memphis. It’s happening two weeks from today. The celebration is for THE HART WOMEN. I wrote the story. Marisa Whisett Baker is hand-sewing it into a novel. The event will have tickets and everything (the tickets are so Marisa will know when she’s made enough books). You can read about Marisa’s...

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TRACKING HAPPINESS: Chapter 25

This is CHAPTER 25 in our series offering gossip, novel backstory, and personal confessions about TRACKING HAPPINESS: A SOUTHERN CHICKEN ADVENTURE. We’re working our way through a novel here. If you’re just now discovering us, you can jump in now or go back to the first entry and catch up. If you jump in now, I can’t promise you it won’t be confusing,...

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Eternity or Bust

When I read the theme for the summer issue of Exterminating Angel Press was “Eternity or Bust,” I knew I had the perfect submission. Thank goodness Tod Davies of EAP: the Magazine thought so too. I’m grateful to her for including my piece in her fabulous magazine. The short story is an excerpt from my novel THE BONE TRENCH....

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TRACKING HAPPINESS: Chapter 24

This is CHAPTER 24 in our series offering gossip, novel backstory, and personal confessions about TRACKING HAPPINESS: A SOUTHERN CHICKEN ADVENTURE. We’re working our way through a novel here. If you’re just now discovering us, you can jump in now or go back to the first entry and catch up. If you jump in now, I can’t promise you it won’t be confusing,...

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My America

This is my America. Where three white Mississippians stand in the heat and praise the knowledge of Raul, a landscape artist, because he knows what the heck he’s doing in this demanding climate. Because, in my America, we value competence, period. Where all the windows on the antique stores and clothing stores and breakfast hang-outs...

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