Category Archives: Culture

Issues related to culture and social issues

Raising Feminists, The Fairy Tale Edition

This weekend my husband and I went to the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco’s Presidio. We’d been meaning to for a while, and though we missed the exhibit of Walt’s massive train set (my husband has a 7-year-old boy’s … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, feminism | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Thinking About Ethnicity

Come and Take It

When I’m asked what ethnic group I belong to, my immediate response is “I’m Irish,” quickly modified by “but I’m also Scottish and English and maybe Dutch.” That’s a pretty common response from white people in the U.S.: we tend … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Rants | Tagged , | 33 Comments

The Rambling Writer: Travel Mementos


Note: In my last blog, I promised to write more about my experiences as a fairly new member of Book View Café, but I’m going to wait a bit to revisit that topic. An upcoming interview of several BVC members … Continue reading

Posted in creativity, Culture, Inspiration, Research, Travel | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment


It really doesn’t qualify as an earworm unless you find yourself humming along with the track in your sleep. Or, if it comes on the radio in the car, you fail to scream loudly and change the station, but instead sit there, experiencing a not-entirely-unpleasant sinking sensation, saying to yourself as the familiar sounds paralyze your fight-or-flight response, “Well, it really is a good song,” and then bursting loudly into the chorus, hating yourself, yet feeling weirdly complete, like a brainwash victim actually feeling rewarded for being unable to run away. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Humor, Music | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

Reprise on Bricolage

  A couple years back, people linked to Lev Grossman’s list of twenty things he’d like to see in fantasy novels. Discussion of lists like this can slow to a halt when writers pop up, issuing long comments about how … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, historical novels, History, Research, science fiction, Uncategorized, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Into the Woods: A Very Short Review

by Brenda W. Clough This is a show, and a movie, about what we want. Do you really know what you’re wishing for? If and when you get it, will it pan out? Or will you discover that what you … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, movies, Reviews | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Evolution in Creative Arts: Thoughts After a Kodo Performance

Kodo Tour

I saw the latest touring performance by Kodo last weekend, the “One Earth Tour 2015: Mystery.” This is the fourth time I’ve seen them and the performance was – as usual – remarkable and stunning. It was also very different … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, feminism, science fiction | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Writing: Where history, fantasy, and science fiction intersect

  I was pretty excited when I found out that Judith Tarr’s Arrows of the Sun was going to be included in the Indie Fantasy Bundle along with one of my own works, Lhind the Thief. The two couldn’t be more … Continue reading

Posted in Books and Reading, Culture, gay fiction, History, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

Praise — and Advice — for Millennials

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

I went to a wedding last weekend. Both the brides and most of the non-family guests were folks in their twenties — the millennial generation. And once again I was reminded how much I like kids today. As a card-carrying … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Lifestyle | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Memorable Foods in Fiction

  When I think back to memorable food I’ve encountered in my reading, the earliest is the lovingly described melted cheese on fresh bread in Heidi, and the warm, creamy milk. Reading that book as an eight year old gave … Continue reading

Posted in Books and Reading, Culture, Food and Cooking | Tagged , , | 64 Comments