a writer's journey as a reader

Published Writings

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Chicken Soup Cover

 It’s a boost to the writing ego to finally have a book people recognize. Having an essay in a Chicken Soup means I share space with other talented writers who also offer inspiration. My essay “A Piece of Quiet” is under C. Muse, which caused some consternation among friends and family who were looking for my name. I thought Cricket Muse was my name…

A few samples of published writing.

 My story “The Potter and the Washerman” appeared in the June 1998 issue of  Highlights. Interestingly, this story appears in many different reading tests. I was surprised when I did an internet search all the different places I found the story.

The first two titles are Boyds Mills Press anthologies.  Marvin Composes a Tea is my story and what is really cool is that is was my first published story.  Highlights for Children bought the story and I was awarded their Author of the Month for it.  I thought, “Wow!  Published author, my story is the title/lead of an anthology, and a writing award!  I’m  going to hit the New York Times Bestseller list next month.”  Well, that didn’t happen, but I am merrily publishing my writing, which is what is important to me.

Boys’ Life August 2009
The article about Brett Smrz is on page 14.  He is an amazing young man who overcame what could have been a tragic setback to his young life.  He is a great guy and an absolute inspiration when it comes to overcoming adversity and pursuing goals in life.

One of the best ways to get ahead with publishing your writing is to attend conferences.  It’s all about hobnobbing with editors, agents, and other writers.  Networking, that’s what I’m talking about.  And part of the conference is signing up for a professional critique.  My article addresses how to prepare for that fast ten minutes.

Cover Art for English Journal, Vol. 99, No. 1, September 2009

September 2009 : “Sophomore Boys and Poetry”

As an English teacher one of my goals is have my students walk out of my classroom liking English.  I tend to be unconventional in my approaches to enlivening my lesson plans.  Poetry usually produces groans from my sophomores, particularly the guys.  I set out to shift their paradigm concerning poetry and my article “Sophomore Boys and Poetry” regales the time I spent second quarter focusing on meter, alliteration, and imagery.  NOTE: my suggested first title “Naked Pink Ponies and Boys” didn’t go over with the editors.  Granted it did sound a little racy; however, the title did have relevance to the article’s content. Hmmm, maybe I will just have save it as my book title when I get around to writing about that book about teaching teens poetry in the classroom.

 “Writer Teacher” (One of several articles written for the SCBWI Bulletin over the years)

It’s lovely having a job where I work with words all day.  It’s even better when I can take those skills as a teacher and make a bit of money on the side by teaching a writing class.  This article for the Society of Children’s Writers and Illustrators Bulletin gives some pointers on how to go about teaching others how to write.  BtW, the SCBWI is the most amazing organization.  They are wonderfully supportive and informative.  If you are a children’s writer you really should join up.  Here’s their site:


5 thoughts on “Published Writings

  1. Pingback: The Serendipity of Surprise or the Art of Capturing Ideas « cricketmuse

  2. Pingback: Word Collecting « cricketmuse

  3. You’ve written some great stories!

  4. Hello fellow SCBWI member. It is a great organisation. And many congrats on your published stories, also for helping teens to enjoy books. I have written a couple of quick reads for unkeen teen readers – Ransom Publishing, Shades series. It’s a UK company and the Shades series has just been re-published by them in both paperback and ebook format – probably not quite hitting the internet yet, but should do shortly. I also write for the African children’s literature market – like you hoping to enthuse kids with a love of the English language. Keep up the good work. It is alarming to think how many people never ever read.

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