Genealogy

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Research is the inspiration

I can sense my writing coach cringing already. About two years ago when I started working with her, she pointed out that one of the reasons I struggled to finish writing my memoir manuscript was because of insecurity. Specifically — I felt compelled to research more. I struggled to consider myself an expert on the people and the lives I was portraying in my story. Stop it, was her advice. Keep going. You know your own story best. She’s right....

Try and write a manuscript again

I used say I was a writer without a story, and then, the story found me. That was back in 2012, when I learned an astonishing family secret that would change the lives of so many. It launched a two-year journey, a deep dive into challenging the truths my family thought it knew, upending legends and unestablished facts that would change how we saw ourselves. And during that time, I lived a story. I tried to write a book about...

Coupled to a family legacy

Darkness and distance can not contain a locomotive’s horn. On summer nights blazoned with stars and fireflies, as citronella candles flickered from the back deck where the adults gathered to drink and joke, the sound of the horn would come charging over the countryside. A line of tracks, an old Pennsylvania Railroad corridor, runs where the Susquehanna River mades a deep and wide scar on the countryside, a good three miles from my boyhood home, far enough we could not...