Reclaiming Empathy In the Age of Indifference

I don’t know about you, but these days, I’m numb. Numb to the rising tide of this unending pandemic. Numb to the suffering of people in Afghanistan. Numb to the wildfires ravaging communities across the West. Numb to the tearing of country’s social fabric and the partisan screaming all around. I don’t know if it’sContinue reading “Reclaiming Empathy In the Age of Indifference”

A Different Kind of Pandemic

Right now, the Internet is awash in think pieces on the anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic. One year ago, the world changed overnight, but not in the ways I thought it would. By early March 2020, where I live in Washington State, it was obvious that we were on the precipice of some kind ofContinue reading “A Different Kind of Pandemic”

Top 10 Reads of the 2010s

The end of a decade is a time for reflection and, even more importantly, it’s a time for top 10 lists from your favorite blogs. Over the last 10 years, I’ve done a lot of reading, so as 2019 winds down, I thought I would look back at my favorite books of the 2010s: 10.Continue reading “Top 10 Reads of the 2010s”

A Lonely Kid’s Best Friend

I think most writers start out as lonely kids whose best friends are books. A little over a month ago, my wife and I were packing to visit my family for Thanksgiving. All of my clothes were neatly packed and I was frantically searching our bookshelves for some light airplane reading. Reading an engaging bookContinue reading “A Lonely Kid’s Best Friend”

Extremism, Compassion and Books

We live in a time of extremism. We are divided along fault lines of who we vote for, who we pray to (or don’t), what language we speak, who we are and who we love. In the news each day, I see people building walls and pulling triggers. We don’t even want to know theContinue reading “Extremism, Compassion and Books”

Why We Love a Good Apocalypse

The other day, my wife and I were hiking through Point Defiance when our conversation turned to the end of the world. If there was a major natural or man-made disaster, how would we survive? Would we be able to hunt the deer in the park? Or should we aim to steal a boat fromContinue reading “Why We Love a Good Apocalypse”

No-Good, Rotten Liars Like Me

“Writers are liars, my dear, surely you know that by now? And yet, things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot.” – Neil Gaiman, The Sandman Last year, I read a short story of mine at CreativeContinue reading “No-Good, Rotten Liars Like Me”

Beyond the Edge of the World

In the summer of 1502, the Florentine explorer Amerigo Vespucci was sailing down the coast of Brazil in the service of the King of Portugal. He was amazed by this new continent, which had never been seen by Europeans before. It was the dawn of the age of exploration when vast swaths of the EarthContinue reading “Beyond the Edge of the World”

Honeymoon Beach Reads

In a week, I will be married. After a year of planning, my wife and I will be off to Greece for two weeks of well-earned relaxation. Naturally, the most important part of our preparation for the trip was deciding what books to bring for the plane ride and the beach. Our first rule ofContinue reading “Honeymoon Beach Reads”

Censorship Kills: Banned Books Week

I stayed up into the late hours of the night finishing the first Harry Potter book. I read it voraciously, finishing in just a couple of days. I couldn’t wait to talk to my friends about it. Imagine my surprise when one of my close friends told me that he hadn’t read it. I offeredContinue reading “Censorship Kills: Banned Books Week”