Saying goodbye to a friend, Barbara Perrin


I got the news of my friend’s death through an email. That is now life in the 21st century. In case you may have known her, her name was Barbara Perrin. Maybe you ran across her in the writing community.

My friend wasn’t my closest friend. We didn’t call each other on a regular basis, or go many places together. But, the relationship was getting warmer. She had a subtle sense of humor.

We attended a 3 day writers group together several months ago. We talked and talked in the hotel room. She was really proud of her son.  I felt like I could tell her anything. How many people can you trust like that?

I met her at a  casual writer’s group several years ago. She’d come every week, all the way from Westerville, Ohio to Reynoldsburg, Ohio. I could depend on her walking in every Thursday, getting some coffee, and sitting down at the table in the back of the room.

She was an editor by trade, and edited some things I wrote. It was something you’d expect someone to charge for, but she generously did it for free. I learned more than a few things from her.

She was a kind and gentle person, one who knew how to be tactful and get along with others. She seemed to have all the patience in the world.

Her stories were really different, and she had a wonderful way with words.  Her stories were about different types of things from an angle you wouldn’t expect. They were quite artistic. One of her stories was published in the last Columbus Creative Cooperative, and she was so excited about it. The editors were looking forward to the one she was writing for the Bicentennial edition.

When they didn’t receive it, they kept trying to contact her. Her only son called them, and gave them the news. That’s why I found out about it through email. The editor sent out the news to everyone who belongs to the group.

There was no obituary in the newspaper. She died like she lived, quietly.

Today, I went to the writer’s group where I met her.  Only one other person who knew her was there.  I missed her so much, especially her kind blue eyes. The group, like all things, changes with time. Both of us felt so  sad about her death.

She was missing. And the fact is she’s not coming back. We both kept hoping maybe she’d show up, although we knew it wasn’t logical or possible.

That is what happens when someone dies  They are missing.

Barbara Perrin is in the top row on the right. She’s wearing denim and a scarf.

Rest in peace.

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Do you think Cursive writing is important?


The English alphabet, both upper and lower cas...

The English alphabet, both upper and lower case letters, written in D'Nealian cursive. The grey arrows indicate the starting position for each letter. For letters which are written using more than one stroke, grey numbers indicate the order in which the lines are drawn. The green tails on the front of several of the letters are for connecting them to the previous letter; if these letters are used to begin a word the green portion is omitted. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m taking my idea for this post from a Facebook friend who was bemoaning the fact that they’re not teaching Cursive writing in schools anymore.

She contended that it was an important part of the learning process. I think it’s more like an art form. I use it because it is faster than printing, but I’m not sure anyone else could read it.

When I was Substitute teaching several years ago, I noticed that hardly any of the High School kids were writing their papers in Cursive writing. They either printed, or used a cross between Cursive and Print writing.

I thought this was a curious thing and asked some of them why they weren’t using Cursive writing.

Their answer usual was that they used the computer for most things, and if they took notes they could print pretty fast. Others said they never learned it. So, I guess they haven’t been teaching it for a while.

When I was an Elementary School Teacher, I remember one parent who was so focused on his child’s poor handwriting that he couldn’t acknowledge his child’s numerous strengths. I’m sure that child grew up to be a success in life. I’m betting he uses his computer for almost everything.

I think as time goes on, paper and pencils will become obsolete. I know when I go into an Apple Store for instruction and ask for paper, they are hard pressed to find any. Maybe it’s already a paperless world and I just don’t know it.

Why fight progress?

Just because things change, does it mean things are worse? I don’t think kids today are less bright than we were. I think they just do things in a different way.

What do you think?

My First Experience at a Women Writer’s Retreat


You’re never too old to learn new things. I put this on my Facebook page, and it’s something I live by. Just because you’re older, don’t give up on educating yourself.

I just attended Deanna Adam’s, ” Sixth Annual Women Writers Winter Retreat”. It was in Willoughby, Ohio, a perfect setting. Women of all ages and ability levels attended this retreat (You didn’t  have to be Anne Tyler  or  Alice Hoffman to qualify for this retreat.) Women stayed in a bed and breakfast, and a charming hotel.

Imagine spending three days with  17 women whose commonality is a love of writing! How about listening to successful authors who have already made it in the writing world.  Speakers included: Joyce Dyer, Sandra Gurvis, and Julianne Lindsay. They represented different venues of writing, and they all were happy to share their knowledge.

With the advent of self-publishing and e-books people who have a story to say, can write it, and easily get it published. It’s a wide-open market. “If your story isn’t well-written and interesting  it probably won’t succeed,” said author Sandra Gurvis.

Spending three days discussing and learning was great. Not to mention breaking bread with everyone.

If you have a passion, investigate it. See if there is anyone else who shares your passions. Groups are forming all over the internet. In some cases, there are chances to meet in person.

Like anything else, you have to make an effort! Go for it.

Women bonding at Deanna Adams Sixth Annual Winter Retreat!

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