August 29, 2017

Writers’ Conference, Killer Nashville. Driving home to Florida from the Killer Nashville Mystery Writers’ Conference in Tennessee, I passed through Southern Alabama. It is a place rife with sharp contradictions. I passed through towns named Opp and Verbena. Along their main roads, I saw abandoned mobile homes, rusted farm machinery, and tumbled unpainted shacks. In the next mile, vintage two-story frame homes lined the road, their porches supported by white pillars. The houses might have aspired to–but obviously failed–to attain the size and quality of antebellum Southern plantations; nevertheless, they reminded me of another era of stability and genteel prosperity, the 1950’s.
The unoccupied landscape was another unworldly venue, the world of Kudzu, ruled by those creeping vines capable of engulfing every twig, every struggling plant, and climbing fifty-foot-tall pine trees. Kudzu vines blanketed some areas of the countryside, transforming them into huge waves, undulating seas of leafy green, more alien, more impenetrable and more forbidding than any jungle.
Then the eeriest experience of all. I passed through a landscape of newer homes, large and well-kept, set back from the road amid acre upon acre of cut grass. It was a gently swelling grassy veld, almost like a park.
Sensations Continue reading

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December 5, 2016

Greetings, Respected Readers,

Yes, my blog and I had a tragic break-up due to “technical difficulties.” With the help of a computer guru, I am now back to network nirvana. I look forward to chatting with you all. Regards, Sharon Sterling

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March 31, 2013

Are You Made Up?

   No, no, if you’re reading this we know you’re real.  Don’t you?  But are you wearing your makeup?  In the 21st century, it’s a unisex question.  Following the lead of politicians and movie stars, plenty of hometown males are slathering on a bit of “BB” cream or eye liner before they hit the streets.  Why?  To look better; to feel better, of course.  My friend, a preppy New Englander, called cosmetics “armor for New York City,” imputing to them a magical, protective function as well.

The bare truth: the basic intent of makeup application can be classified as either decorative or remedial.  Product names clearly identify the intent of the purchaser.  Decorative:  Luscious Lashes, Scandal Blusher, Scintillating Shadow, Kiss-Me Lip gloss.  Remedial:  Age-defying Makeup, A Touch of Grey Hair Coloring, Young-again Lashes, Dark-shadow Eraser.  The demographics are spliced precisely on the age line.
I remember the good old days when a quick swipe of blusher and lip gloss guided by my Continue reading

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December 9, 2012

Some years ago I was a (politically correct) “returning student,” (read old person) at the local community college.  I had taken five or six fun and easy courses, each rewarded with an “A” and a ratchet up in confidence.  Finally I felt ready to take Beginning Algebra.  Be impressed.  This move demonstrated a bravery equal to falling on a live grenade, considering the fact that I have a math phobia and had managed to graduate high school innocent of even rudimentary contact with said algebra.

That first day in class I realized that my peers, most of whom were less than one-half my age, had taken algebra before and this class was designed for them, not an algebraically uninitiated like myself.  The teacher blithely rattled on about formulas, equations, real numbers, natural numbers and irrational numbers.  Perversely, she wrote letters on the blackboard, instead of any of the aforementioned numbers and some were embraced by parentheses, which I had foolishly assumed were used only to cozy up groups of words.  The teacher’s language was worse than gibberish.  I felt as if I were about to become an irrational number, so at the Continue reading

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September 15, 2012

   Hello, Readers.   I’d like to share some ideas, opinions and some deeper thoughts about life.  I’ll share my ideas about current events, about the challenges of being an author, and just about anything else that strikes our fancy.  This blog will be free of profanity, insults and other negative sputterings. Here is a brief bio for background:


     I was born in Colorado, the youngest of four siblings. Some of my father’s family lived in Colorado, but more relatives lived in Oklahoma and Missouri. Family stories had it that our great-grandmother (on mother’s side) was full-blooded Cherokee Indian. That heritage fostered my interest in Native Americans, and a particular love and respect for the Hopi, of north-central Arizona. However! Very recently, a DNA test, done by revealed NO Native American blood, and no other particularly exotic heritage at all. Sigh.

I received a Bachelor of Social Work degree from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona and a Master of Social Work degree from Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana. For the past thirty years, Arizona has been my home. As a licensed, clinical social worker, I worked in Continue reading

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