Wednesday, July 30, 2008

"Writer's Life" Essay in Marginalia

Last spring, Beth Staples, the managing editor of Hayden's Ferry Review and Marginalia, asked me to write an essay for the "Writer's Life" feature of Marginalia, the magazine of the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing (who also publishes HFR) at Arizona State University.

She had read through this blog and the KMF website, and was excited at the opportunity to spread the word about KMF to the Center's 5,000+ mailing list. She said I could write about KMF, grief, or writing, some combination therein, and/or anything else. The essay that I came up with is published here, in the current Fall 2008 issue.

This essay is a really great opportunity to tell new folks about KMF. You might send Beth a big shout-out of gratitude via email, if the mood strikes you.

On a personal level, I am very proud of the essay that I wrote. I am honored that I was asked to write it. It would mean a lot to me if you would read it when you get a chance. Again, here's that link.


Kelly Luce said...

GORGEOUS writing, and it looks great on the page. What a wonderful way to share Katie's spirit--her love of fleece pants and O.J., the half-sticks of gum. Marginalia is lucky to have you in its pages!


Marcus said...


Thanks for writing this and for sharing it. Kelly says it well, so just a few thoughts:

1. It's always good to see a Wordsworth allusion
2. That Secret Powder Fresh comes up suddenly, and is delightfully jarring.
3. You have a wise therapist. An analogy to that blues man: At one point in time, I honestly wondered if I was "exploiting" the Korean war because I liked to watch M.A.S.H. If people hadn't killed each other in 1951, then I couldn't laugh in 2001. But the truth is that sometimes awful things happen, in our world and in our most personal lives. The best possible way to cope is to make art, forever and ever, as a benediction.

Kelly Luce said...

got my hard copy of the magazine! your name on the cover...wooo! it looks even better in person.

Linda S. Socha said...

Reading your work is like having
love made visible. Thank you
for being who you. You have ability for a deeply meaningful level of connection and an incredible intuitive process. I am honored to witness.

KATE EVANS said...

Your writing is wonderful because it's simple and complex at once. The depths you go to with a gentle brushstroke help me to see and feel grief and life in new ways. I'm going to link this piece to my blog in an entry today.

Judy Shaffer said...

Oh John,
This is the most beautiful piece I've ever read. I can offer no critique, only tears. Tears of sorrow, tears of loss, tears of emptiness, tears for memory, tears for you and the rest of us who are left to remember. But I can also smile (maybe laugh a little out loud) as you remind me of my Katie and introduce me to many aspects of her life that I could only guess at or view from afar. Your writing keeps her real and I need that. So as you set out on your new adventure, know that you go with encouragement and love from both me and Katie!
Love and Peace! Judy

Anonymous said...

I've read this several times now and each time I am moved by it in some new way. Thanks for sharing this with everyone. DAD

Josi said...

I found your blog by another blogger recommendation. I knew nothing of you or your wife until I read the article, but, wow, did you put a sharp focus on life's greatest gift--Loving and being loved back by someone you admire. Beautiful article and beautiful sentiments. Katie is a lucky girl to have her memory so well preserved and cared for. Best of luck. I think I'll hold my hubby a little bit tighter tonight.

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