Category Archives: education

Reflections from a Writer

Today I’m sharing a friend’s guidelines for a meaningful critique. I’ve mentioned many times how strongly I believe in solid critique groups, and that all of my work owes much of its strength (and none of its errors,) to writers’ groups to which I’ve belonged. At the Santa Barbara Writers Conference some weeks ago, I … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, writing

Why it’s so hard to keep Nigeria in focus

A discussion on Facebook pointed out the lack of sufficient coverage and emphasis on the tragedy of Nigeria’s struggle with the Boko Haram group, and I have to weigh in. The reasons for our poor information and erratic, ever-corrected “facts” are not, I believe, based in racism. Having lived in Nigeria for many years, I’d like … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, history, social and anti

here comes my next book!

Here’s the cover of my next book, a thriller/science fiction yarn set in the university town of Isla Vista, California. Imagine a strong smart young woman in Southern California planning to become a scientist, who notices the gradual disappearance of the local homeless, and a sequence of strange events concerning ducks– which mount to a personally threatening … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, publishing, science, writing


Every so often after I’ve spent hours out in the studio painting, there’s a message waiting on the machine when I walk into the study. Hit the button– I hear the tentative young male or female voice on the recording and then a rush of words. “Professor? You won’t remember me. I took your class…” … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, science

We’re Back

We’re back. I didn’t know we were going until about a week beforehand, so I never told you, but now I will. We flew over to Boise, Idaho for the annual Botanical Society meeting. It’s been seven years for my husband since he last attended a Bot Soc meeting, and then he went only … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, science

Ketchup Packets are Immortal

We walk in the evenings, carrying a bag or two, and pick up the trash on our way. Bottles, coffee cups, straws and all the debris left from fast food meals. Our neighborhood roads are relatively quiet wandering routes, with hilly profiles, so I find it interesting that we can normally fill at least one … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, food, science

After Isla Vista: Commencement 2014

(I co-wrote this commencement address, a version of which was given last weekend at a UCSB graduation ceremony.) This was the year. A year of change, of disorder, of assault, of murder, of the world moving without us, without our approval. A year of feeling the deep violation of our space and our peace. You have … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, science, social and anti

Bad Dog

I’m on call for jury service this week, and I’m willing; I’ve always been willing. After all, isn’t this service one of the most important things a citizen can give, other than vote? Haven’t I been telling our kid and the other kids I tutor for years that this is part of a citizen’s right … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, social and anti

glorious food

    I sit here at the computer patting my warm sleek black cat who purrs as though it all means something. But cat, I’m procrastinating. There are soaked kidney beans to be boiled then baked this afternoon in slathers of molasses, packed with sweet onions and mixed with mustard. There are chicken thighs to … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, food, science

Let us now praise

      I’m behind on this news, but the man is immortal, so I suppose when he died has little weight. I had the honor of meeting and hearing Emil ‘Tom’ Frei III M.D. and his co-worker Emil Freireich M.D. the pioneers of combination chemotherapy, nearly seventeen years ago when Professor Daniel Botkin … Continue reading →

Posted in: Blog, education, history, science