Lake Atitlan, Panajachel, Guatemala

“Reading and writing are acts of empathy and faith. Guard that trust carefully — in this rapidly changing business, it’s the only sure thing.” ~Erin Keane
"Never give up. And most importantly, be true to yourself. Write from your heart, in your own voice, and about what you believe in." ~ Louise Brown

"Write something to suit yourself and many people will like it; write something to suit everybody and scarcely anyone will care for it."
~Jesse Stuart

"A writer's job is to take one thing and make it stand for twenty." ~ Virginia Woolf

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Creative Pause

I don't believe in "writer's block." Although of course there are days when one's creativity is in full swing and others when it seems to disappear, when the writing doesn't go well for whatever reason.

I like to think of those periods as a pause in creativity. No block. Nothing I can't change when I'm good and ready, just a slight pause.

There's plenty to do when it happens, things that are part of a writer's work. Update the website. Read articles about the publishing business. Stay involved on social media. Organize files. Read books!

One nice thing about a creative pause is feeling like a normal person instead of a slave to whatever book is after you, pushing itself to get written. You can relax and enjoy life instead of agonizing over every "wasted" moment not spent writing.

Writer's block has negative connotations. The creative pause is rather nice. It can be a welcome respite from the intense productivity that comes when creativity is in its fullness with its prodding, pushing, unrelentless attack on your time, talents and energy.

No need to dread the creative pause, is what I tell myself. Welcome and embrace it, enjoy it, make the most of it. Like all good things, it will come to an end in its own good time.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Memoir Review: ACCIDENTAL SOLDIER: A Memoir of Service and Sacrifice in the Israel Defense Forces

…At age nineteen, Dorit Sasson, a dual American-Israeli citizen, was trying to make the status quo work as a college student―until she realized that if she didn’t distance herself from her neurotic, worrywart of a mother, she would become just like her.

This book caught my interest. I'm reviewing ACCIDENTAL SOLDIER as part of the WOW blog tour.

Paperback:  337 pages
Genre:  Memoir
Publisher:  She Writes Press (June 14, 2016)
ISBN-10: 1631520350
ISBN-13: 978-1631520358
Amazon Link: click here


Book Summary:
At age nineteen, Dorit Sasson, a dual American-Israeli citizen, was trying to make the status quo work as a college student―until she realized that if she didn’t distance herself from her neurotic, worrywart of a mother, she would become just like her.

Accidental Soldier: A Memoir of Service and Sacrifice in the Israel Defense Forces is Sasson’s story of how she dropped out of college and volunteered for the Israel Defense Forces in an effort to change her life―and how, in stepping out of her comfort zone and into a war zone, she discovered courage and faith she didn’t know she was capable of.

My review of ACCIDENTAL SOLDIER

Dorit's relationship with her mother is the motivating force for her decision to join the Israel Defense Forces, although her father's influence was a strong part of it as well. Her Israeli-born father, divorced from her mother and remarried, realizes if Dorit doesn't do something to break the unhealthy psychological ties with her mother, she may turn out just like her.

The mother in Dorit's story is a minor character in some ways, yet looms huge throughout the book due to her influence on Dorit. The mother is actually fascinating, one of those kinds of people you can't imagine functions in real life, yet you want to know every detail. If Dorit ever writes a memoir about her mother's life, that would be one not to miss.


Once Dorit is in Israel, my favorite parts of the book were her descriptions about the country and people. I found it interesting how she felt safe there, like the whole country had her back. And the citizens love their IDF, feeling like this strong group of committed soldiers has their back. 


Altogether, this memoir has a fascinating dynamic, going from the dysfunctional family life Dorit experiences in New York City, to kibbutz life as an eighteen-year-old, and at last breaking into a strong independent adult as a member of the IDF. 

About the Author:  Dorit Sasson writes for a wide range of print and online publications, including The Huffington Post and The Writer, and speaks at conferences, libraries, and community centers. She is the author of the a featured chapter in Pebbles in the Pond: Transforming the World One Person at a Time, the latest installment of that best-selling series, and. She is the host of the global radio show "Giving Voice to Your Courageous Story." She lives in Pittsburgh, PA with her husband and two children.



Find Dorit Sasson Online:


Twitter:  @VoicetoStory