Recent Posts

  • Girl on Fire: A trip to sunny Phoenix in the dead of winter

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedin[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, February 6, 2014] Over the weekend I took a short vacation in Phoenix, Ariz., a nice break from the snow and bitter Iowa cold. While I was there, I saw Russel Finehout, my boyfriend, and my aunt and uncle, who winter there. My flight from Des Moines to […]

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  • Girl on Fire: A little down home delicacy

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedin[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, January 30, 2014] The smell of grease and seasoned flour wafted through the air at Elks Lodge on West Montgomery Street. Tables were filling up with couples and families out for dinner. I bartended and served meals and Eric Shawler, Dick Hammond and Monica Fastenow were sitting at […]

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  • Book Review: The Obsidian Pebble by Rhys A. Jones

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedinTitle: The Obsidian Pebble Author: Rhys A. Jones Published: 2013 re-release Publisher: Spencer Hill Press Pages: 257 From:  Standoutbooks These days, anyone and everyone can get published–writing about things like werewolves and vampires, true love and broken hearts. Look at 50 Shades of Grey, a spin off of Twilight, or any of those Harlequin […]

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  • Girl on Fire: Quiz creates laughs in the newsroom

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedin[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, January 16, 2014] I took a quiz my coworker Sarah Brown suggested to me, titled “How Y’all, Youse and You Guys Talk,” (the URL is http://tiny.cc/dialectquiz) through the New York Times. And, of course, I couldn’t help but laugh at some of the choices the questions offer. For […]

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  • Book Review: Broken Harbor by Tana French

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedinTitle: Broken Harbor Author: Tana French Published: 2012 Publisher: Penguin Group Pages: 450 From: Barnes and Noble Every so often, someone comes along who knows the insides and outsides of her genre so magnificently, it’s hard to understand just how her mind works to create such writing. For me, Tana French is that author. […]

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  • Girl on Fire: New year, new resolutions

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedin[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, January 2, 2014] As so many other people have done, I’ve set several resolutions for the new year. This year, I’m focusing on fitness, finances and writing. It seems to be a constant battle for me to lose those few extra pounds. I love working out. Even though […]

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  • Girl on Fire: How literature opens doors to opportunity

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedin[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, December 19, 2013] For the past few weeks, I’ve been spending a lot of my time playing video games. But, recently, I decided to finish a few books I’d started more than a year ago. I’m glad I did, because I realized just how much I missed reading […]

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  • Book Review: After by Francine Prose

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedinTitle: After Author: Francine Prose Published: 2003 Publisher: HarperCollins Pages: 330 From: Barnes and Noble This novel by young adult writer Francine Prose is very similar in theme to Todd Strasser’s novel The Wave. Where Strasser’s novel looks at a social experiment based on the actions of the Nazis, Prose’s novel looks at the […]

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  • Book Review: The Kiss by Kathryn Harrison

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedinTitle: The Kiss Author: Kathryn Harrison Published: 1997 Publisher: Random House Pages: 207 From: Drake Public Library While I was reading Kathryn Harrison’s disturbing memoir, The Kiss, I was also reading several other books. Those books were a lifesaver. They broke up the dark themes woven throughout the memoir I picked up at a […]

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  • Girl on Fire: Acknowledging first responders

    Share me!TwitterPinterestFacebookRedditTumblrStumbleUponemailLinkedin[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, December 5, 2013] As someone who was on the outside of anything news— and emergency—related until recently, I am still somewhat stuck on the outside looking in. And, this past week is no exception. My boyfriend Russ Finehout and I were on the way back to Creston from […]

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