Living in the Sweet Spot

Living in the Sweet Spot

Did you miss me? I’ve been living in the land of Overwhelm the last few months and need to get back on track, whatever that is. How I long to be able to snuggle into the sweet spot of Just Enough—of time and resources, rest, play, and work. My husband and I’ve been out straight…

The Fear of Change

The Fear of Change

Reading through Dr. Bernardo Quintana’s mythology treatise, Chiloé Mitológico, I’m struck once again by the background motivation of fear in so many of the rites and rituals, tall tales and strictly-timed tasks. Fear of the spirits and the sickness they cause. Terror of darkness and death and the dead, as manifested in the story of…

Launching into the Deep

Launching into the Deep

In a Door-of-No-Return moment, the Lord of the Rings character Samwise Gamgee halts in the middle of a field. “If I take one more step,” he announces hesitantly, “it’ll be the farthest from home I’ve ever been.” But at his companion Frodo’s encouragement, he takes that next step. And basically launches into the deep. He…

This Homesick World

This Homesick World

Among the many themes in my books, the motif of HOME—or perhaps more precisely, houses—surprises me most with its broad-spectrum presence. I never planned to weave those ideas into the writing, was hardly even aware of them. But in this homesick world, maybe that’s not unexpected at all. Recently I suffered an attack…of nostalgia. Did…

Do You Believe in Destiny?

Do You Believe in Destiny?

“Do you believe in destiny?” Nicolás Serrano, up to his elbows in apple mash, asks halfway through my first book Destiny at Dolphin Bay. His friend Melissa has questioned his self-identification as a Chiloé islander, knowing he grew up a city boy. As she watches him make cider in an antique press, she sees him…

New Legends of Chiloé

New Legends of Chiloé

“If you want to change the world, pick up a pen,” Martin Luther said—and did. Thirty-two years ago, as a young wife and mother in the (almost) godforsaken Islands of Chiloé, I decided I wanted to change the strangely delusional world I lived in. So I picked up a pen and began to write some…