Author: Lauren Miller

Parting Ways

After several months of hard deliberation, I am now in the process of transitioning out of my role as Director of Communications for the St. Louis Writers Guild (SLWG), a position I’ve held for the past four years. This was announced at the December 2018 meeting but I’d like to take a few minutes to expound on this decision in more detail. I first got involved with SLWG over six years ago, when I began writing for their literary journal, The Scribe, as a reporter on guild events. Over time, I had several pieces published in their journal and anthology, and went on to be the content editor for an annual anthology, The Scribe 2016. Earlier this year, I announced that I would be partnering with SLWG in launching a new literary journal, 1764. Since that time, I was privileged to read a number of wonderful entries by talented writers, as part of this project. If I were not busy enough, this summer, I also began a literary internship which has been an amazing opportunity …

The Practice of the Brown Scapular

The first time I saw the scapular, which looked like two woolen squares attached to a few ribbons, was around the neck of one of my younger cousins. She was a cradle Catholic and I found it positively bizarre that anyone would choose to wear such a thing. I recall asking her about it once and in her gentle way, she smiled and acknowledged that it was just something she was led to do, that she found worked for her. It left me completely puzzled. Did she sleep in it? Shower in it? What about someday when she’s old enough for prom…won’t it clash with everything? How on earth does one begin to find a dress to pair with that mousy, scratchy brown wool? I was mystified. If I’m being completely honest here, I waffled between thinking Catholic practices and beliefs were curious but misinformed, or downright idolaters (sorry). I read a wonderful article recently by someone further along in the practice of wearing a brown scapular than I am (in my three months? now) …

2018 Newsletter #5

Here’s seven updates as to what’s been going on in my life over the past week. Estimated reading time: < 7 minutes. I’ve been… Watching: Million Dollar Menu, a show on Netflix about investing in the restaurant business. It has more of a discussion on the financials than Kitchen Nightmares, a bit like if that show had a crossover with Shark Tank. Not much time for TV this week but what I’ve seen of the show so far, I like. Reading: I’m working my way this month through several entries from a literary agent I’m working with. While I can’t give specifics, I am really enjoying the process and drawing on my background as a writer and as a book reviewer to help me try to make educated, helpful critiques. Eating: Vegetarian! Trying out new things on the menu this week, including a really good creamy spinach soup with roasted carrots, onions, bowtie pasta, and of course, spinach. And on my “must-try-at-home” list, a grilled cheese from one of my favorite local restaurants (whole wheat …

Savior on the Nile

In a dream once, I saw a reed basket carrying Moses upon the bloody Nile. Moses, the precursor of Christ, and thought of the consecrated host and the cup acting like the vessel on the river, bearing likewise precious cargo. On the outside, it looks the same. But like Miriam, we know what is contained within! Will we recognize the day of our visitation?

2018 Newsletter #4

Here’s seven updates as to what’s been going on in my life over the past week. Estimated reading time: < 7 minutes. I’ve been… Watching: Agatha Christie’s Crooked House. Wow. My husband predicted the killer in the first 15 minutes maybe? I was still guessing right up until the very end. I guess that means I need to brush up my perception skills. This has made me really want to sit down and actually read her mysteries when I’ve got the time. One of these days… Listening to: Lauren Daigle again (what can I say? I get into moods…) If you know of any Christian artists similar to her, hook a girl up please! Eating: homemade candies, a surprise from my mum on a recent visit, and scotchies. I love a great oatmeal-butterscotch cookie. Visiting: the family farm. It’s mid-August and the grasses are dry from drought but there’s nothing like watching hummingbirds feed, or a groundhog rooting about in the brush, or a young fawn, ears alert, crossing a road. InstaBrowsing: Catholic posts. Especially …

Entries Close on 1764 Debut Issue

Hey guys and gals, as you may recall, I launched a literary journal (announcement) with the St. Louis Writers Guild and July 31st was the deadline for entries. Over the past week, I’ve organized all of the qualifying entries by category and submitted them to the selection committee for consideration. Now begins the process of reading the entries and finding the best fits for our debut publication. As a reader, what I’ll be looking for is quality writing, original voices, writing that struck an emotional chord in me (because hopefully it’ll do the same for our readers). And if it has a chunkier word count, so much the better. We have a literary journal to fill! Thank you in advance to everyone who submitted for our debut issue (if you’re reading this post). Keep an eye on this space for more updates. For more information on 1764, see our website at http://www.stlwritersguild.org.

2018 Newsletter #3

Here’s seven updates as to what’s been going on in my life over the past week. Estimated reading time: < 7 minutes. I’ve been… Watching: Luke Cage SS02. I liked it better than its first season, and better than The Defenders or Iron Fist. I still think that Jessica Jones and Daredevil have stronger antagonists. Listening to: Lauren Daigle’s new hit single, “You Say”. I love how real Daigle gets with her lyrics. She just launched the lyric video this week too so if you’re a mega-fan, you can begin memorizing the lines (lyric video here). Eating: the most amazing British confection I’ve never heard of before — a Victoria sandwich (for the uninitiated like me, it’s buttercream frosting and strawberry preserves sandwiched between layers of sponge cake). Next time, I’ll take photos to share. Visiting: a British-themed tea house that serves you generous portions (see above comment about food) and tea by the pot. I want to go back next time on a rainy day, snag a seat by a window early, and bring …

2018 Newsletter #2

Here’s seven updates as to what’s been going on in my life over the past week. Estimated reading time: < 7 minutes. I’ve been… Watching: Probably more Netflix than I ought. I need to spend more time reading. Listening to: I’ve started listening to Podcasts on my phone. I’ve found several great lectures online by Fr. Timothy Gallagher (I’ve blogged about him here before), and it’s nice to see what else he’s been working on. Eating: the most amazing confection I’ve never heard of before, a Victoria sandwich; and scones the size of a hamburger!!! Both available from a little tea shop (British-themed) in our part of the city. The tea was quite good too. I’m looking forward to going back. Visiting: A new (to me) park down by the riverfront. We went for an evening event but I’d love to go back and stroll along the riverside paths. The haze around the river valley is lovely to behold. InstaBrowsing: Feminine Reverence, and similar. I also have been looking at Pinterest for ideas on making …