Help me get Sophia Loren’s attention!

A couple of months ago, my brother came up with a wild idea. He decided that Sophia Loren would be great as the 80-year-old action hero of A Thread of Grace, Lidia Leone. So Rich found a public address for Ms. Loren and sent her a copy of the book. Why not, right? Her sons are producers. Who knows what might happen! A month later, the Wall Street Journal's Style and Fashion section published an interview with Ms. Loren in which she said, "Finding new acting roles is not so easy...You have to find a character that suits you as a ...
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Days of Awe

Every year on Rosh Hashana, I honor my brother's wishes and repost this remembrance ...
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SPARROW news, and a request

I had very modest expectations when I began writing The Sparrow back in 1992. I never meant it to be a novel. I thought I was trying a short story. It was an experiment. I wanted to see what it was like to create characters, to write dialog, and set a scene. I honestly expected to crap out after eleven pages, but those characters, and the situation I dropped them into, and their relationships kept pulling me along. An obsessive year later, I had a completed manuscript about Jesuits in space. Even I thought "Jesuits in space" sounded stupid and by ...
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Teeth from Waterloo

A lot of readers have asked me about the reference in Doc to the use of teeth from dead soldiers in dental bridges and plates. Here's a link! ...
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Take me now, Lord!

Had to share this review of Epitaph for the Dallas Morning News by Allen Barra, the respected author of Inventing Wyatt Earp: his life and many legends. I may have the last sentence tattooed on my arm. Just kidding. I hate tattoos. But... Wow ...
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The end of the endless weekend

When young writers ask my advice, I always tell them, "Marry an engineer. They're not only funny, creative, rational people, they get benefits at work and there's been been a good job market for them since the Renaissance." I'm not kidding about that. My husband is a software engineer. Don has not been unemployed for a single day since the Nixon Administration. If you've enjoyed my novels, thank him. For the past 45 years, he has made it possible for me to do financially stupid things like get a Ph.D. in anthropology, and teach anatomy for a lousy $11 grand a year, ...
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Back in the saddle again!

After five weeks of dealing with pertussis, I have advice: if you're over 50, get a tetenus-diptheria-pertussis booster. Immunity from childhood vaccines evidently wears off after a few decades and the disease is making a big come-back. However, I am well now and we've rescheduled the canceled Epitaph tour events on the west coast. For the new dates and venues, click EVENTS! In the meantime, here's a link to a fun interview about Epitaph at the Jesuit magazine America.   ...
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A personal favor?

If you were planning on coming to one of my tour events, please go to the store anyway and buy a copy of Epitaph from them. I am so distressed by having to cancel on these great stores. Please support them! Loganberry Books, 13015 Larchemere Blvd., Shaker Heights OH Powell's Books, 3415 SW Cedar Hills Blvd, Beaverton OR University Bookstore @ UWashington Club, 4020 W. Stevens Way NE Seattle WA Vroman's Bookstore, 695 E Colorado Blvd., Pasadena CA Books Inc., 855 El Camino Real #74, Palo Alto CA Book Passage, 1 Ferry Building, San Francisco CA Copperfield's Books, 775 Village Ct., Santa Rosa, CA 95405   ...
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Epitaph tour events canceled, March 23-28

If you've followed the Epitaph tour on Facebook, you'll know that I've been traveling sick and getting sicker by the day. I joked about having the Doc Holliday Memorial Cough, but by the time I got to Denver, it was clear that I couldn't keep going. The diagnosis is pertussis, a serious respiratory illness that can last many weeks. The cough is exhausting and painful -- so bad, my doctor did in fact consider it necessary to rule out TB as well. I've been forced to cancel next week's events in Beaverton, Seattle, Pasadena, Palo Alto, San Francisco and Santa Rosa ...
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Apology and tour update

My web guru is trying to consolidate two lists of blog subscribers. The effort seems to be generating random re-sends of earlier blogs. Sorry about that. We'll get the issue sorted out soon. The Epitaph tour is half-completed. I'm now home for a week. Here's a link to the upcoming events ...
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