How I Met Rumi

How I Met Rumi

First, a confession. Though I’m about to publish a new book, DAMASCENA: the tale of roses and Rumi, I had no idea who Rumi was when I sat at his tomb in 1998. I had never heard of Rumi. I was doing research for my first novel about a famous Turkish rug weaver,...
Love is never lost.

Love is never lost.

It’s been a while since I last wrote to you, or shared any news. 2013 marked a turning point in my life—a shedding of everything I thought to be true. In the midst of a divorce, I hit rock bottom. And yet, despite the darkness and despair, I found a way to stay...
Fountain of Youth? Hike a ‘Thirteener’

Fountain of Youth? Hike a ‘Thirteener’

Each summer, I leave the comfort zone of sea level and ascend to roughly 9,000 feet for a few days. Sometimes to write. Sometimes to teach. But always to walk and ride on dirt. Crested Butte, Colorado is my favorite Rocky Mountain town just north of Gunnison, Colorado...
Last Breath—A Can of Swiss Air

Last Breath—A Can of Swiss Air

While we say goodbye to 2012, I wanted to share a story about choosing joy in the midst of sadness and suffering. I didn’t think it could be done until I watched my friend and next door neighbor, Trudi, die last November. Trudi was Swiss and determined. Instead...

Radioactive by Holly Payne

Published by Tin House, Friday, October 19, 2012 March 28, 1979. They told us to line up single file, wait for the buses on a bell-less afternoon. They told us there was something in the air. “Do not play outside today,” boomed the principal’s voice, as loud as East...
Mastering the Stroke: The Olympics of Writing

Mastering the Stroke: The Olympics of Writing

Missy Franklin makes me smile—and want to write. She motivated me to get up early this morning and dive into a pool for a mere 2,200 meter swim. She’s the darling of the 2012 Olympics for every right reason. She’s positive. She’s strong. She owns her...