writing an essay, to going to the dentist ..
I Think in English!: Writing Essay to Going to the Dentist
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Writing essay is almost the same as going to the dentist
I just added a new recipe under, well, recipes, of course. It's low guilt mac 'n cheese and you might as well make it tonight. You will not be sorry. For one thing, if there's any left over, it's heavenly for lunch. And if you let your dog lick the pan, he'll appreciate it.
Events are starting to be booked for the new novel, Once Upon A Time, There Was You. I'll put a description of the book and a quote from it on the website once we have a jacket--we still don't have a jacket. It comes out April 5th.
Today is one of those drab winter days with little flakes of snow chasing themselves around, first slanting to the right, then to the left, then just kind of hanging in the air like they're at a bad party. The best thing would be for me to go for a brisk walk. So what do I do? Eat two (2) pieces of Boston Cream pie. Which was delicious. If my doctor is reading this, I'm just kidding. I really ate a spinach salad with no dressing. And some.....what? Brewer's yeast.
I got to be in conversation with Lynda Barry on stage at Unity Temple on Tuesday. She has a new book out called "Picture This" which is ostensibly about drawing, but to my mind says a lot about creativity in general. She urges people to "trust the back of your mind." Reading this book frees you up inside, no matter who you are or what you do. In addition to that, Lynda Barry is the queen of the evocative phrase. Garrison Keillor once said, "All you have to do is say rhubarb pie and the reader does the rest." When Lynda's talking about summer, she uses these phrases: standing on the back porch in your underwear, crossing hot asphalt with bare feet, talking into a fan. When you're next in the bookstore, take her book into a corner and start at the beginning and see if you don't get charmed pretty quickly. Then buy it.
And now, its time for MAILBAG!!
T. B. from Boise, Idaho, is a 56-year old nurse who writes: "Thanks for giving voice to many thoughts and feelings inside this woman's heart. We don't know each other, but I feel that we are friends. Your books are friends to me." This was her first time writing to an author. If only I were Oprah, I would send her a Cadillac convertible for that.
A. R. from Anderson, S.C. sent a really thoughtful letter about the longing she has to be writer. She also talks about how many of my female characters feel stifled in traditional roles, and asks if I ever felt that overwhelming desire to run away. Oh, honey, don't we all? I think all of us, men and women, have days when the open road holds particular allure. I used to find it so odd that sometimes when I was feeling really terrible, I would go to the mall and buy a new book or some red lipstick and feel so much better. It seemed to illegtimize my feelings. But the truth is, sometimes it just doesn't take very much to bring us out of our despair. (Sometimes it does, but that's another story.)
S. K. from Ona, W. Virginia writes, interestingly, "I'm given to jumping in the car and taking spontaneous mini-trips." She should go on over to S.C. and pick up A Ragan. Isn't that a good idea?
A. W. sent a beautiful letter about our shared appreciation for Paris and Pablo Neruda and Erik Satie. And with testimonoy about continuing to love people close to us when the going gets tough.
J. R. just read The Day I Ate Whatever I Wanted, and she sent a letter praising the short story form. Yes! Tell all your friends! Short stories are great!
I wanted to share more letters, but Homer just came up and put his nose on my knee, and looked up at me. Which is his way of saying, "Man, are you STILL at the computer?"
To which I say, "Yes, yes, just a minute, I'll take you out in a minute." To which he says, "That's what you always say and then you just sit there and sit there and sit there and type type type. What's so great about typing? There are SQUIRRELS outside! Rabbits1 Mailmen! Pieces of I-don't-know-what gross stuff stuck to the ground for me to quick gobble up before you can yell at me or jerk me away!Let's go, man! Let's go! Come on!" "In a minute," I say, and he lies down and sighs out his nose and and just gives up and now I feel terrible so I'm taking Homer for a walk. Then I'm going downtown to the great city of Chicago to see a play and have dinner with a girlfriend. This is even better than red lipstick.