I’ve been away from the computer for several weeks. Just back from China with my husband Peter celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. This photo shows me standing by the Yangtze River. Catching up on publishing news after my return, I can share that my short story “Keep Me Posted” is now online in the April issue of the Scarlet Leaf Review. Here is the link. If you have comments, please share them on the magazine website. Thank you!
I’m switching this blog up a bit. Several years ago when I started blogging, my objective as an editor of a local Annapolis area magazine was to promote events around Anne Arundel County. Thus I named my blog “Write On Annapolis”. While I’m still doing some marketing and freelance magazine work, part of my day is devoted to writing fiction.
I’ve also been writing a poetry, which I’ve also been posting here, as well as still writing memoir.. What I find difficult to do is to promote my own writing. I’m very good at promoting causes, organizations and businesses, but when it comes to promoting my creative work I often run out of steam. So I’m going to try to use this blog to share my writing accomplishments and pursuits with the world and I will start by posting a link to my short story published in Scarlet Leaf Review (a work of fiction) entitled “Trying to Be Normal”. I’d also like to share that another short piece of mine was recently published in the first issue of Fire Pit a literary magazine published by Eight-Stone Press. It is entitled “The Real Thing.” If you’ve followed my previous career as an antiques dealer, you’ll find it enlightening.
I hope to share more publishing successes as I continue to write short stories and will be embarking on another National Novel Writing Month adventure starting November lst. Thank you for reading. Without readers, where would writers be?
The sun was in my eyes, so there is a bit of a squint but I am wearing a Nano T-shirt in honor of the upcoming National Novel Writing Month. This photo was taken by my husband Peter on the Corn Hill Beach in Truro, Cape Cod, my most favorite place to write.
Just stopped by a panel discussion event at today’s Annapolis Film Festival on “The Pitch” and am looking forward to seeing a few movies this weekend. In case you’re curious, I got to preview one of the wonderful feature documentaries entitled, “Little White Lie,” written, directed and produced by Lacey Schwartz; and below I share a post/review.The evening I watched “Little White Lie” I’d just returned from a visit to my family home in Baltimore. Standing around the dining room table, my brother David Maril, our cousin Ron Becker and I tried to identify a stash of old family photographs. We searched our memories trying to recognize names and face of relatives going back several generations. There were photographs of my grandfather, a child sitting on a rocking horse and as a soldier in postwar France. Another larger photo showed my grandmother, as a young girl posing for a picture surrounded by her parents and four brothers and sisters in Bel Air Maryland where the family once had a farm. My grandmother, the eldest child, was ashamed of having been born in Russia. When the courthouse burned down and the birth records destroyed, she told everyone she was born in America. That was her little white lie. But some lies are much larger.The documentary “Little White Lie” begins with archival footage of the Jewish community in Brooklyn during the mid 20th century and there are old photographs and a timeline showing the Schwartz family arriving in the United States at the end of the 19th century. There is footage of old home movies showing parties, bat mitzvahs, picnics and other family events. Everyone looks happy.
We all grow up hearing stories about our grandparents and great-grand parents. But what if a one line of our ancestors had been completely wiped from the family history and another group of ancestors put in their place? What if our true heritage has been hidden?
Lacey Schwartz grew up believing both of her parents were her biological parents and that she was the descendent of Eastern European Jews, but that was only half the truth. The little girl and young woman in the family movies has darker skin and fuller features than her parents. When she asks questions about her appearance as a child she is told that her mother’s family had a Sicilian great-grandfather and that is why her skin is so dark. She accepts their explanations and when she looks in the mirror does not acknowledge her bi-racial heritage. Children believe their parents.
The movie is framed within the preparations for a wedding, Lacey’s wedding. As she tells her story, she shares with the viewers her belief that she did not feel ready to join her life with someone else’s until she understood the actions of her parents. They divorced when she was a teenager. What did her father know about the identity of Lacey’s biological father? Did he realize his wife had been unfaithful and that her lover had been African American? Why had her mother not been forthcoming with the truth about her heritage ? Her biological father was a family friend named Robert Parker, but he dies when Lacey is 30 with no opportunity to develop a relationship.
Lacey’s dad Robert Schwartz is the only father she has ever known. Although her bridegroom is African American, Lacey holds steadfast to Jewish traditions complete with the breaking of the glass as the two are pronounced man and wife. She decides to retain her last name of Schwartz, delighting in the double symbolism. The word “Schwartz” means black in German.
One of the many fine films coming to THE ANNAPOLIS FILM FESTIVAL.
It has been several weeks since I’ve posted in this blog, although I have been faithfully posting at least once a week on the Annapolis Taste blog.So if you are ever wondering what I’ve been up to, you could check there.
Back in July one of the members of my book club generously opened her house for a weekend to her fellow bookies for a long book club weekend. And what a great weekend it was in York Beach,dining on lobster and doing a night of Karaoke. Of course we swore that “What happens in York Beach stays in York Beach” so I can’t provide any details but… it was a pleasant break from the hot humid environment of Maryland.
So here are a few pictures…
I always have to go swimming. I find the cold water exhilarating and I convinced my friend Susan that she should join me!
Yesterday was August 14th, the wedding anniversary of my friends Lynn and Jeff and the birthday of my husband Peter, day that marks many important occasions. I always write him a poem and we try to do something fun so we started celebrating Monday night with a beer and a light dinner outside in front of Castlebay on Main Street in Annapolis after walking Chloe around town. All through dinner it was Chloe who got all the attention. Everyone wanted to pet her and say hello. Must be because she is so adorable!
Last night we went to Severna Park to buy Peter a beer making kit.
Afterwards we went to dinner at Gary’s Grill and for details click here.
Chloe the sweetheart labradoodle is sleeping at the moment, but that’s rare because she’s usually busy doing something… chewing, digging, chewing some more, chasing a toy, jumping up and down hoping to be noticed.
She likes to play and my husband Peter can get her to take a walk all the way downtown, about a mile, but she doesn’t want to walk with just me. She keeps stubbornly wanting to walk around the yard, but not actually cross the street and go somewhere. So in another week or two, I’ll have to bite the bullet and enroll with her in a training class.
Housebreaking? Well, she is pretty good, but not perfect. Everything is okay as long as we take her outside every hour. But I’m not certain she would think to remind us to take her out if it was up to her. Still, she is adorable. So soft and happy to see me in the morning.
It’s that time of year again– tax season. I told myself I was not going to wait until March and that I would have it all done by February, or almost done because tax statements are still arriving. At any rate, I am determined to clear my desk for once and for all and be done with it! So, if anyone out there is wondering why I’ve been remiss in blogging, you have your answer.
“Hanging in there” has taken on a whole new meaning to me these days. It is the stock phrase I’ve been using, whenever people I encounter casually ask me, “How are You?” and in many cases have no idea I am encased in a heavy back brace or what I affectionately call “the clamshell” that I am stuck in 24 hours a day. Tomorrow it will be one month since the “accident” and I am frankly tired of recounting the story of what happened. Cheerfully I send people to my blog posts, but not everyone likes to read blogs. I’ve also learned that there are those folks that are convinced that the verbal version I tell them will be so much more interesting then anything I might put into writing. As a writer, I think they are dead wrong, but acknowledge that there are details I may edit out as not being important to the story I want to share that they want to hear. Yes, the blog is a public place and a certain amount of self-censorship is imposed. It’s also a place where I want to be my “best self” so I put a lid on some of my anger, fear, and frustration. Thinking positive means living positively and visualizing that I will completely recover without residual pain and that by the start of the New Year I will be back in my intermediate pilates class flexible and strong.
Yesterday evening I worked about an hour at Chesapeake Beer Madness, and can report it was a very successful event. The tickets which enabled attendees to sample 16 different beers, all brewed in the Chesapeake Bay region, were sold out before the event opened. the music was really good, at least the music I heard prior to 8:00 p.m. I tasted some nice beers, and others I didn’t like as much. So now that October has officially begun, you can vote online for your initial favorites as the field will be narrowed from 16 beers to 8 beers. If you didn’t attend last night’s event, well I guess you’ll have to go out and buy some beer. Have a good weekend.
Every so often before I start to blog, I look at the dashboard that measures which posts are the most widely viewed in a particular day or a particular week and I am amazed that certain posts such as Earth Day Musings are consistently popular. Is it the words that draw the audience? Dancing the Night Away is another consistently popular post. How I wish I could dance the night away, but not this week or the next. Maybe by Thanksgiving? I’m right at that point in the healing process where people tell me, “You are starting to look like yourself.” This can be a dangerous time because I start doing something physically that I really should not do such as start to unload the dishwasher and then a little voice tells me, “No! You are not to bend or to lift!” I feel badly that my husband gets stuck with all those chores and instead I turn my focus to writing another article. (I’m getting lots of writing done) But I also get restless to move around, need to move around, because sitting too long wearing the TCO is painful. Outside, although I obviously can’t weed and am never at my best a diligent weeder, some fall flowers are doing well in our present moist and humid environment. I have some blooming roses and some hearty mums that were potted in the spring and are about to bloom again. How nice. Plus the Firethorn has red berries and looks happy after looking parched during the heat of the summer. It is almost the middle of the week. The end of Tuesday. How I wish I was getting ready to go to my Zumba (latin dance aerobics) class but instead, when my husband comes home we’ll take a walk around the neighborhood and I will admire all that is green.