Writing inspiration from Vladimir Nabokov

I’d click into anything with a  title like that. : ) The Russian-American writer Vladimir Nabokov is one of my favorite writers, and sometimes I feel somewhat like a type of  (accidental) groupie. I studied at Cornell, the university where he taught until he made his name with Lolita and happily gave up academia to write…

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How do you feel when you wrap up a writing project?

This week, I’m wrapping up a writing project I should have concluded long ago. This is a contemporary story I’ve loved writing about three very different expat women living in Rome, Italy. Their lives cross when they meet up at a  1950s movie night at an Italian seaside resort off-season. Although my contemporary characters are…

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The splendors of Naples’ renovated San Carlo Opera

I’ve always been curious to see Naples’ Teatro San Carlo – the oldest continuously active public opera in the world. On a recent visit to Naples, I went on a guided tour to see the recent renovations that restored this historic opera house to its former splendor. San Carlo Opera was commissioned by the Bourbon…

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Writing inspiration in the mountains

Although I live in Rome, I love to escape when I can to the nearby mountains of Abruzzo. I have a small place in a little town up in the Apennine mountains, and I enjoy going out there to escape the chaos of Rome – to hike and mountain bike and ski. I was out…

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Highlights of medieval Albi, France

We truly enjoyed our visit to beautiful Albi last year. This medieval town, 77 kilometers northeast of Toulouse, is well worth a visit on your trip to southern France. There are two highlights to the town – the thirteenth century St. Cécile – the largest brick cathedral in the world. This imposing fortress was built to symbolize the…

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Unfinished work for #Readwomen2014. Join #Readwomen2015!

Those of you who may have followed my blog this year know what a big fan I am of #Readwomen2014. Although there are more talented women authors out there than ever, writing from every corner of the globe, it’s clear women writers aren’t getting the amount of attention they deserve. Traditional media tends to favor…

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Medieval Manhattan? The Cloisters

Living in Europe, when friends and colleagues ask me what to see on their visit to New York, I always get the odd look when I say to spend part of one day exploring ‘medieval Manhattan’. As Europeans know all too well, American history is remarkably short. But money can buy almost anything, as the…

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What are your 2015 writing goals?

Happy New Year! 2015 is already upon us, we’ve slept off all the food and champagne, and it seems a good time for those of us to love to write to set our writing goals/resolutions for the new year. Last year I posted my writing goals for 2014. I’ve – ahem! – somewhat achieved them.…

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