Daily Archives: March 5, 2014

Thought for the Day – March 5, 2014


“It’s like driving a car at night. You never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” – E. L. Doctorow

I give an awful lot of workshops and presentations at schools throughout the Maritimes – and sooner or later somebody ALWAYS asks me how I write a story.

For me a story – or a novel – or even a poem – is like a journey.

I need to know where I begin and where I am going.

I always think back to the days when I used to hitchhike across the province – or even across the country a couple of times. I always had a little sign with me that read – NEW GLASGOW or YARMOUTH or VANCOUVER.

I’d walk backwards down the road with my sign cradled in my arm and my thumb stuck out. I knew that I was starting in Halifax. I knew that I was going to end up in Vancouver. All I had to do was keep walking until I got there.

Same with a story.

Once I know the opening scene and the final scene all I have to do is keep on walking until I get there.

yours in storytelling,

Steve Vernon

Hammurabi Road new

On Lent…

I’ve always made jokes about Lent.

Stuff like – “I’m giving up Lent for Lent this year.”

I make no excuses. We never really made that big of a deal about Lent while I was growing up – even though we were church-goers. And as I grew older I tended to grow away from the church just a little.

I have always been a believer in the idea of God – I’ve just always been a little allergic to those folks you meet who take the whole thing just a little more seriously than I care to.

Still, now that I have begun writing about the Bible stories I feel that I would be demonstrating a strong degree of hypocrisy if I didn’t get to know that side of life a little bit better.

So for this year I have decided to observe and accept Lent as best as I can.

I had rode from work on the bus yesterday thinking about this very thought. I had made up my mind that I would give up sugar for Lent. Heck, I am overweight and it would not hurt to shave a few calories that way.

But then – this morning – I got up out of bed and heaped a plateful of leftover pancakes and dumped some syrup on top of it. I fried an egg and put ketchup on it.

Then, over breakfast, I asked my wife just when exactly did Lent begin.

Hey – I hadn’t heard ANY announcement.

I figured I’d just find out when it started so I could get busy and get ready for it.

“Today,” she said. “It starts today.”


Isn’t that just like a fellow? Start driving down the road without bothering to read the map.

Well – I decided that I needed to re-evaluate my Lenten observance – SO – I have decided to give up pastries and candies for Lent.

Sugar is a bit of a demon for me and by golly I love a cake or pie more than you could imagine but from now until April 17 I am going to give up PASTRIES and CANDY.

I will make an exception for my wife’s birthday cake. I will have a piece of that. But other than that I am saying “No thanks” to PASTRIES or CANDY.

That includes chocolate, durn it.


I don’t know if this will make me a thinner person. There’s that whole love affair I have with bacon to consider.

Yours in storytelling,

Steve Vernon


Uncle Bob's Red Flannel Bible Camp - From Eden to the Ark

Miles and Miles of No-Man’s Land

I came across this blog entry over at Libba Bray’s own blog and it bit a chunk out of my heart.

Libba Bray

This is the hardest blog I’ve ever attempted to write.

For the better part of eight months, I have been struggling under the thumb of a rather intense depression. This is a monster I’ve battled many times in my life; it is not new. Yet, this has been a particularly brutal one, and I’m not out of the woods yet.

As a writer, I try to write about everything. But it’s hard to write about depression. For one, there’s the fear that the minute you say, “I’m suffering from depression,” people will look at you funny. That they will nod at you with wincing, constipated face, place a hand on your arm and say, with all good intent, “How are you?” And your pain will war with your desire to be “normal” and not looked at funny by sympathetic people at parties. So you will answer, “Fine, thanks” while you’ll…

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