Theme week: Books in Context

It's nearly July, and people above the equator are sitting on the beach and reading. But books are not read in isolation. There's always something going on in your life, and that will color your perception of the book. And the environment you read in changes your view of the text. We've noticed that people … Continue reading Theme week: Books in Context


Change is Good

People can change, growing past wrongful ways in the name of what's right. We pass new laws. We adopt new language. That's the recipe for progress: putting justice ahead of habit, principle over precedent. --Frank Bruni, Op-Ed Columnist, New York Times By now, unless you've been on another planet, a remote desert island with no … Continue reading Change is Good

You’ve Got a Friend

I’ve always been a loner--the kind of person who’s happy to do things on my own. I’ve had one-person dinners, watched movies alone, even travelled overseas alone. And I don’t mind it. In fact, I’ve even enjoyed it. The solitary life of a writer has come naturally to me. The days spent holed up in … Continue reading You’ve Got a Friend

A Note of Caution

In last week's column, I mentioned the aphorism about necessity being the mother of invention. This week, I was reminded that we should be careful of that for which we wish. I have to laugh because it brings to mind a true story from some years back. I should also add that every now and … Continue reading A Note of Caution

Four Books by Simon Winchester

The Irish Island Korea by Simon Winchester, published 1988 Before writing the masterful volumes Krakatoa, A Crack in the Edge of the World, and The Professor and the Madman, geologist-writer Simon Winchester generated a series of travel books. I read this book out of a curiosity to see where one of my favorite authors started … Continue reading Four Books by Simon Winchester

A Writer’s Career Development Plan

My company has a specific tool for developing and analysing long-term career goals. They call it a Career Development Plan, and it asks all kinds of incisive questions such as: What type of work do you like? What are your short term goals? What are your long term goals? What skills and experiences do you … Continue reading A Writer’s Career Development Plan

The Joy of Laundry

Finally a day on which I could stand in my backyard with the first item of clothes in my hands and some clothes pins in my teeth! A day when I could take in a deep breath of warm air, and not even try to keep from grinning like a fool. You see, Mother Nature … Continue reading The Joy of Laundry


All good things eventually must end, but change can be good. You may have noticed that, sadly, Steven has decided to leave the Nose. Luckily, Kathleen Ronan, who's started writing here over the past few weeks, will be taking over for Steven on Mondays. We're also looking to expand the site. We'd like to update … Continue reading Changes

The Attention Whore

I’m an attention whore. There, I said it. I’m the one who puts up a post on Facebook then checks back every half hour to see how many likes it got. Or after I write one of these articles, I’ll be back every few hours to check on it. Did people like it? Did anyone … Continue reading The Attention Whore

Reflection and Appreciation

Three years ago I was picked up at a Korean airport in the middle of a rainstorm. My friends Kate and Chaz had already been there for a year and they took us on a combination bus and taxi ride to their apartment. The lights in Busan shone red and orange and yellow and reflected … Continue reading Reflection and Appreciation