Magical Memoir Moments

Are You a Sprinter or a Marathoner? Is There a Third Way?

My daughter just ran ten miles for the first time with her friend Kristi. Having my propensity toward rosy cheeks, she got beet red: She did not, however, inherit the capacity for long-distance running from me or from her father. She earned every mile from her own effort. Having worked hard to run in two…

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Coverings and Bonnets, Part Three: Church of the Brethren and Quaker Stories

Back in 1966, both Charlene and I wore prayer coverings to Warwick High School. Here’s a picture from our senior yearbook showing both of us in relation to our classmates — enjoying the fun, but from a distance. Charlene is sitting closest to the windows. I am holding a paper.  Charlene’s Story Charlene was then,…

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The Blessed Ties of Memoir: And A Chance at TWO Book Giveaways

Dairy maids don’t often make it into literature. A.A. Milne placed one in a poem about the King’s breakfast. And Thomas Hardy wrote The Milkmaid about a young woman disappointed in love. My favorite meditation on Vermeer’s The Milkmaid is this one by Marilyn Chandler McEntyre’s book In Quiet Light. It starts this way: There…

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To Know as We Are Known: David Crumm's Five Tips for Interviewing

Being interviewed can be a daunting experience. Sometimes the interviewer isn’t prepared, hasn’t read your book, or is just looking for a way to stir up controversy to increase ratings. But sometimes an interviewer has not only prepared but has lived inside your book in such a way that he or she has actually climbed…

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How a Romantic Getaway Led Me to An Ideal Reader: And Another Book Giveaway

Kathy Pooler is one of my most prolific and generous memoir writer friends. If you’ve been following this blog, you have met her talking about how to use Twitter to build meaningful relationships. Today she is featuring a guest blog from me about how I stumbled onto an “ideal reader” while on a romantic getaway…

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For the Media

Jump to author photos Jump to book video trailer Q and A with Shirley Talk with Shirley Showalter, author of the new memoir Blush: A Mennonite Girl Meets a Glittering World Q. Your mother named you after the film star Shirley Temple, whose movies you were forbidden to watch by your Mennonite church. How did bearing…

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Praise

Blush was selected to be a Top Spiritual Book of 2013 by Frederick and Mary Ann Brussat at the Spirituality & Practice website. –The Best Spiritual Books of 2013 List “Not since Kathleen Norris’s Dakota: A Spiritual Geography have I read a more beautifully written or movingly told story, one whose “minute particulars” become a portal…

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Happy Independence Day: Memoir Photo, Report, and Check-In

Every memoir includes some things and leaves some things out. The picture above didn’t make it into Blush: A Mennonite Girl Meets the Glittering World, so I’m sharing it now. My family will be gathering tonight with my sister Doris on top of the hill of what used to be called The Home Place to…

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Searching for the Fit Self: A Physical and Spiritual Check In

Time for a check up on my bigger goals. Let’s re-examine the goals on June 4: Personally, I want to feel rested, trim, fit, and ready for a marathon fall. I also want to experience gelassenheit. Whoa, you say. What’s that? Gelassenheit means yieldedness or submission to God and to community. It was a favorite…

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The Author Responds to Critique: Thrill of the Chaste Part III

I’ve admired Valerie Weaver-Zercher’s insights and frisky, learned (not a combo you meet every day) writing style ever since I first read her work in magazines. Over the years, I found her reviews in Christian Century, her articles about practical spirituality in Sojourners (you can purchase at Amazon through the link) and her op-eds in…

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