John Dixon’s Phoenix Island

John Dixon attended the grad school program in which I’m currently enrolled. He was gone before I started, and other than on social media—where we once had a conversation about the joys of tomato sandwiches (fresh, homegrown tomatoes on toast with mayo and pepper, of course)—we’d never met. When Phoenix Island was released (January, 2014) it went on my To-Be-Read…


Let it go. Her daily mantra. Sometimes hourly.

Her brother doesn’t return her call? Let it go. She leaves yet another message, the fourth or fifth—she can’t remember which—in three days.

Wet towels on the bathroom floor? Let it go. She gathers up the mess and dumps it in the hamper.

A car rear-ends her at the stoplight? Let it go. She smiles, exchanges insurance info, calls the tow truck.

In the end, a small thing breaks her. Insignificant. Anyone else would ignore it. She can’t. She lets go and wonders who will clean up the mess.

My response to a prompt from the fabulous Lana Hechtman Ayers. Drafted in Pemaquid, Maine in June, 2013 and edited into a drabble.

Drabble (plural drabbles): A short story (fiction) exactly 100 words long.
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Happy Father’s Day

New Fonts from Designer Brian Willson

While I was sleeping—a.k.a. immersed in grad school—my friend Brian Willson (not a Beach boy) released three new typefaces based on historical scripts.

Abigail Adams was inspired by the handwriting of the second First Lady and first Second Lady of the United States. For Botanical Scribe, Brian turned to the script of Belgian artist and botanist Pierre-Joseph Redouté, who, despite being court artist to Queen Marie Antoinette, kept his head throughout the French Revolution. Nineteenth century statesman, orator, and social reformer Frederick Douglass’s writings on John Brown’s raid at Harpers Ferry provided the inspiration for Douglass Pen.

View the gallery above (click on any image) to read what Brian has to say about these fonts. Visit the 3IP Type Foundry to find more of Brian’s historical penmanship fonts, including Old Man Eloquent, drawn from the handwriting of Abigail’s son, John Quincy Adams.

Extra Credit

SUBJECT: Extra credit essay, World Music

Dear Professor Lannister:

As you ordered, I am writing for your approval of my extra credit essay, “If I Was a Song, What Song Would I Be?” I’m sorry. That’s not what you called it. You called it “My Musical Identity.” I’ve chosen the following three prompts from your list of required points: Philosophy of Life, Relationships, and Hobbies. The song I chose is “Psycho Killer,” by The Talking Heads.

Joseph Barclay

p.s. I met your daughter at a party last week. She was adorable. Sorry about your loss.

Drabble (plural drabbles): A short story (fiction) exactly 100 words long.
Find more at


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