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Black Watch – Pageantry and War

A very short piece from the recently released collection Speaking with Strangers. It’s a story about pageantry and war that was published originally in Miscellany, the College of Charleston literary magazine, using the pseudonym V. Pascoe.     BLACK...

Short Fiction COVER REVEAL

It’s been a while since I’ve posted on this website, having been preoccupied with other writing efforts AND with trying to get my life in order (a perennial problem) – not to mention April income taxes. What’s in the works? In press right now...

On Valentine’s Day with Love

            February 14, Valentine’s Day, is a holiday of the heart, a day when we celebrate Love and give gifts and send greetings to those we love. This has always been a special holiday for me, because my maiden name was Valentine, a...

Uglich, Goritsi, and Kirillo Belozersky Monastery

Russia, River Cruise, continued. On deck, the sun is shining, the boat is churning smoothly across Lake Onega, the wind is a little brisk, the cirrus clouds divide the sky into deep blue above and a beautiful turquoise swatch  nearer the horizon. This cruse part of...

What Do Women Wear?

It’s pathetic that women go along … with such exploitation. It takes almost nothing to arouse a man, so why go to these extremes? … Isn’t it time to take a calm-down pill?

Travel – Solo? With a Tour?

The world outside my comfort zone has always beckoned me to come, see, and understand. To you, curious reader, armchair traveler, seasoned traveler, or would-be traveler, I offer here a lifetime of experiences and insights in our strange and wonderful world.

Russia Revisited

This picture of the Moscow Kremlin was taken during a tour with Grand Circle Travel to Ukraine, Russia, Estonia, and Finland, May 24 – June 17, 2010. Personal notes on the tour have been posted on the blog site linked below, beginning with an entry on arriving...

Thanks and Love to the Men who have Broken my Heart

Thanksgiving seems like a good day to post this meditation on love, heartbreak, and gratitude. This was written originally about ten years ago and was just now updated. From the time of my first sexual and emotional stirrings, I have had a penchant for impossible...

On Being a Woman: Female Scientist

From the time I was quite young – perhaps ten years of age– I have been enthralled by the way the world works, and I wanted to be a scientist, initially an astronomer. Sometime later – perhaps around age thirteen – I also wanted to become a writer. I struggled with...

Contraception and Human Social Well-Being

Not only is contraception good for women’s health, it is good for the health of a society, for the well-being of all its citizens. Humans are social animals and smooth social functioning requires social structures and behavioral specialization, particularly...

Contraception and Women’s Health

The debate over contraception and abortion has raged around moral issues such as whether or not destruction of a conceptus (a fertilized ovum) is equivalent to destruction of a human life, and whether or not the use of contraception promotes promiscuity in women. I...

How Does the Body Heal itself? Tissue Repair – Part 1

[Forgive me; I’m returning to this blog after a long absence caused by work on other projects, including a book that has come out recently.] Healing from everyday cellular damage happens within the membrane surrounding each individual cell of the body, with the...

Women, Writing, and Blog Hops

  About a month ago, I agreed to participate in a blog hop focusing on the Writing Process. For those (few?) of you who haven’t participated in a blog hop, it goes something like this. One person writes a blog on a designated topic and, in the writing, links back to...

Are Women and Men Wired Differently? Part 2

This was my response to the blog on gender differences in brain wiring introduced in the last post. I read your rant with a sinking heart, in part because I can understand where you’re coming from. I understand the annoyance and pain of feeling once more...

Mother to Daughter: A Questional Legacy – Part 4

This is the final installment of a set of meditations that began here/. There was a time, when I was much younger, that I resented my mother a bit for not teaching me the rules about how to be a girl. I had to learn all that stuff all by myself—from books and...

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