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Category: People

Meet Clayton Smith, Chicago Author

I met Clayton Smith at the “Chicago Writes Conference” last September.  He read from his then soon-to-be-released novel, Anomaly Flats. He hooked me with the scene where the main character, Mallory, gets introduced to the Oracle, which turns out to be the bowling alley.  I could hear, see, and smell that bowling alley.  The idea that a place has prescience stayed in my head until I could get the book.  Plus, Clayton stuck around and chatted with me for a while. Okay, maybe I hooked him into a conversation a little bit, too.  After all, I’m the woman who sat…

Illinois Global Scholars

Sure, when I help them in my arms, I told them I wished for them a happy life, a life where they continued to be loved and respected, and where they cared about people more than money. Then they grew, walked on their own, became strong-willed, struggled and succeeded in school, fell in love, went to college, experienced broken hearts and bruised bodies. They became someone new. Themselves. Someone separate from me. Someone beyond my imagination. I can tell you a bit about each one of them,and I often do, but this post is about Wrestler #2. Remember when I wrote…

Throwing Stones at Steinem

Acht!  I never had this happen before.  I write a sentence, I delete it, I start over.  My head is crammed with thoughts that beg to get into coherent sentences and paragraphs. This morning, Loved-One came in while I was taking a bath. “Watcha doing?” “Taking a bath.” “Looks like you’re thinking.” “I’m trying to put my thoughts together for my Gloria Steinem/Land’s End post.” “I’ll leave you alone then.” Yes, this is the actual conversations that a man, who knows his wife, has with a woman who’s mind never rests. “Let he who is without sin, cast the first…

Meet Author Gloria Doty and “Bring a Cowboy Home”

I met Gloria Doty a couple of years ago at my very first writers conference, Write to Publish. It’s the perfect place to get your feet wet meeting publishers and have your writing critiqued.  Oh my, what a wonderful, supportive group of people. My best-blogger-friend, Kim Sullivan told me about Write to Publish, and I jumped in feet first with her, not knowing it was also a Christian writers conference. Gloria and I have some things in common.  We’re about the same age, she’s a blogger, ≈we both have a special needs daughter, and we both write books. BRING A COWBOY…

STEM Tuesday: Meet Betty Trummel

Do you know some of the differences between the Antarctica and the Arctic? Which one is a continent? Which one has no mammals? Which one is dedicated to research? Which one allows commerce? Which one is where Santa Claus lives? Thanks to Betty Trummel, I do. Okay, I already knew that Santa lives at the North Pole and that’s the Arctic. I knew the Antarctic is a continent.  The Arctic is almost all ice and water, with small islands of land.  The Antarctica has no mammals, and it’s protected by a treaty, while the Arctic allows commerce. The main purpose…

Becki and Renée: Two Women with Style

becki Utley - 1Style is more than the way a woman looks or the clothes she wears.  It’s more than the way she carries herself.  It’s about who she is.  A couple of weeks ago, I got a chance to sit down with Becki Utley, and extraordinary woman.  She’s got style.

I found Becki almost by accident. Her Facebook Page popped up by some algorithm in the system. What a great idea, I thought.  People post “ISO” (in search of) what they need, and others post what they have to give away.

It all started when Utley needed things to help a friend. She tried Freecycle, but items got snatched up so fast, it seemed pointless to Becki. She decided to take matters into her own hands, so she started a Facebook page. Now she and Renée administer their Page together.

Becki began “rehoming” her baby clothes and furniture when she decided four children were enough for her. That was a little over two years ago; when she still lived in the affordable housing.  Now, she and her friend, Renée average 30 to 40 hours a week picking up, sorting, washing, and distributing clothes, furniture, and supplies to those in need. Renée has five children. The women also provide resource referrals for people who need assistance.

They have one rule:  Nothing gets re-sold. It’s all free.

Come Meet Author Vikki Claflin

VikkiC“The naked happy dance is more effective than medication for most of what ails us!” according to Vikki Claflin.

Why, her name even sounds like laughter.

I got a chance to sit down and chat with Vikki last week, and I’m still giggling. I want to know more about how she wrote her book Shake Rattle & Roll With It.

Vikki has an eye for detail that, surely, she got at birth, if not that,

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