September was all about arrivals – three of them, all occurring within a ten-day span during a pandemic, with fires raging in the West, in a country swirling ever deeper into a shithole of its own making thanks to a morally bankrupt administration and, as been recently revealed though long suspected, a literally bankrupt unbillionaire…

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For the second time, the publication of a book of mine coincides with a presidential election year. Living Color: Angie Rubio Stories will be published this fall, five weeks ahead of election day. While fall is a busy time for new books to arrive on the scene, my concern is not that Living Color will…

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When your grandson’s birth is preceded by eleven days of street protests in the heart of Quito, does the smell of tear gas penetrate the womb, do the whir of helicopters and the boom of explosions echo inside the uterine wall, does all of it presage more disruptive events in his life? Ilio’s was not…

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Twitter is my compulsion during these coronavirus days. I’m a habitual scroller, madly clicking support on all posts about the appalling ineptitude and negligence of Trump, his shameful lies to cover his inaction and shameless self-congratulation for imaginary accomplishments. I retweet in support of authors whose celebrations and tours for their new books have been cancelled.…

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This past year I read good books and experienced good things. Here are a few of each of them matched up in a semi-random, teeny bit calculated way, introduced by a few lines from the featured book. From “1989” in How to Write an Autobiographical Novel, a deeply perceptive and intelligent collection of essays by…

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When I was pregnant with my first daughter Natalie in 1986, the Chernobyl reactor exploded and the threat of a nuclear cloud passing over the Pacific Northwest and radiating the six-month old fetus inside me freaked me out. Later, when I was pregnant with Ana in 1989, tanks rolled over Tiananmen Square, scattering protestors, killing…

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Before I ever needed an author photo, I thought that if the day came that circumstances demanded one, I would use the drawing my daughter did of me when she was in third grade. The likeness was undeniable, the colors vivid, and the vibe cool. Those blue glasses were seriously daring, and not all reflective…

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Every month is literary for readers and writers, but it seemed like April has been especially full of events for me, both as participant and audience. Here’s a brief rundown: AWP I’m going to cheat and start with AWP, which was at the end of March, so practically April, right? I went to a lot…

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