Anatolian Days & Nights: Angie Brenner Embraces the Writing Life

Anatolian Days and Nights

Angie Brenner sets a tulip-shaped glass of amber-colored Turkish tea and a plate of hazelnut baklava before a visitor and settles into a wicker chair. Beyond her dining room window, her neighbor's apple orchard is in bloom sending pale pink petals adrift in the breeze. Her affable dog, Sam, a shepherd mix whom she rescued from the San Diego streets curls up on her day bed and falls asleep.

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Anatolian Days and Nights – A Love Affair with Turkey

Anatolian Days and Nights “So you want to learn about Turkish coffee,” says Joy Stocke, turning to me, her enthusiasm giving way to a wide smile. “Did you know that the first coffee house was in Istanbul?” We are meeting in another coffee house many miles from Istanbul, Rojo's Roastery in Lambertville, New Jersey, an unofficial office for staff members of the online magazine, Wild River Review, of which Stocke is Editor in Chief.

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Father’s Day

guernsey-fathers-day-circle For the buried, closure. For the missing, space-- This Illinois distance Where a man can walk forever, Stubble and sky, Where a house on the other side Is ever the horizon.

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Going to Jerusalem

passport

“Don’t sit by the door.  You could take a bullet,” my father warned me. “Go with God,” my mother said.  I felt her tears on my neck, there in front of the apartment house, under the tall bare tree, its brown leaves scattered on the sidewalk by the cold December wind.

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Haunted by Africa

Haunted in Africa

I have no conscience memories of my birth mother, Ella. My earliest memories are those of my stepmother Anna when she and my father were missionaries in Africa.

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Mother’s Day

Mother's Day

It snowed the day we buried my mother. The weather had been spring-like all week, and the middle of February seemed more like the middle of May. Nature was confused, and green shoots from the bulbs edging my yard had already begun to emerge, crowning through the black loam.

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One Life, Two Names

One Life Two Names

During a slow-warming spring in Minneapolis, my application to a creative writing program was declined. When I read the form letter, sent via a website, and addressed to me by my first name, Iyabo, I experienced a kind of dissociative moment. My mind, befuddled by the disappointing news, rejected the name, deeming it not mine.

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Orchid in the Snow

orchid in snow

When we want to believe we are loved, we will find the evidence, even in the coldest of places. The snow was mythically heavy in December 1963 on the night of the Christmas Ball. Neither my boyfriend nor I was old enough to drive and so as darkness fell, my father took the wheel of our used Chevy sedan and drove us to the Ball in a blizzard.

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Returning to Me: A Cuban-American Woman’s Memoir Gives Readers An Intimate Portrait of Cuba’s Diaspora

Return to Me book cover Sometimes the most powerful accounts of history are not the ones found in history books, but rather the firsthand accounts of those who lived through the events themselves. Author Ibis Lezcano Kramer gives readers a vivid glimpse into her past in her memoir Returning To Me: A Cuban-American Woman’s Journey (also available in Spanish as De regreso a mí: Viviencias de una cubanoamericana).

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Sweet Nothing: How I got my Head Handed to Me at Landmark

Sweet Nothing 1

Right—where were we? Seek and ye shall find: I was at a point where I needed a change, and a change I got. Oh yes, I got my head handed to me at Landmark—the world’s biggest LGAT or Large Group Awareness Training program—and went through a gamut of emotions. First I was indifferent, then I liked it, then I detested it, then I hated it. More aptly, I loved and hated it—a familiar confluence of emotions!

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Sweet Nothing: The Rocky Road to Nirvana

Sweet Nothing part 2

I have often thought of writing a novel, similar to Thomas Mann’s Confessions of Felix Krull, which would be the life story of a charlatan making out as a master guru . . . It would be a romantic and glamorous tale . . . also raise some rather unexpected philosophical questions as to the relations between genuine mysticism and stage magic.

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Truth Hunger – A Meditation on Mary Karr’s The Art of Memoir

Art of Memoir “A great voice renders the dullest event remarkable,” notes Karr. Yes, and something else too--a truly great voice strums chords of the most highly desirable variety in me--the kind that wakes my ass up. And naturally makes me want to clear my throat, get up and sing, too.

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Your Life as a Book: How to Craft and Publish Your Memoir

Your Life is a Book book coverThe wide world outside your intimate circle will ask you to do more than become self-aware. Readers will want to identify with the “you” who is fully created upon the page. The memoir is like an open door for readers to walk through and become you...And the reader has expectations. It's like the difference between cooking for one and cooking for a dinner party. Be generous. The wide world outside your intimate circle will ask you to do more than become self-aware. Readers will want to identify with the “you” who is fully created upon the page. The memoir is like an open door for readers to walk through and become you...And the reader has expectations. It's like the difference between cooking for one and cooking for a dinner party. Be generous.

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