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A Writer's Jottings

Gardening as a Kind of Playfulness

Now that April is here and the ground has thawed, growth is beginning in the garden again. As always, I'm racing to keep up by raking brown leaves off borders and exposing green sprouts. 


This spring my essay, "Gardening as Play," about the time I asked myself whether to give up writing for gardening, is in the wonderful literary magazine, Reinventing Home. In it, I ask how to weigh the easy pleasure of gardening against the more elusive satisfaction of writing, and how to compare the private playfulness of growing plants with the public experience of being published.


Only after recoiling at the prospect of tending a famous neighbor's garden did I give up the idea of abandoning writing and gardening for pay. By then I had discovered that writing as work and gardening as play beautifully balanced each other. Each has made it possible to keep doing the other for almost four decades.


With warm wishes,



News About Four Tenths of an Acre: Reflections on a Gardening Life


My gardening memoir was first published by Random House in 2005. Every spring since then it has found new readers. It is "an elegantly written yet also edgily realistic account of small town, small garden life," according to Kirkus Reviews.


Signed first-edition hardcover editions are currently for sale at The Hickory Stick Bookshop in Washington, Connecticut, at Oblong Books in Millerton, New York, and at Johnnycake Books, in Salisbury, Connecticut.




News About Word for Word: A Writer's Life


I was recently spotted also signing copies of Word for Word at the Hickory Stick Bookshop in Washington, Connecticut (above).


A foreign rights agency, DropCap, is representing Word for Word this month at the London Book Fair: Book Exhibition 2022.


Now that Word for Word has left my hands and is on its own, your stars and reviews on Amazon and Goodreads help keep it aloft. Thanks!

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