My New Marketing Plan

When I get ready or brave enough, I’ll hire this women to be my publicist. I’ll plant her in all the Barnes & Nobles across the country: “Have you not heard of Ruthie Marlenee? How can you not know? You work here! What kind of a cockadoodie bookstore is this that you don’t even haveContinue reading “My New Marketing Plan”

I’m Bi

I woke up this morning thinking that finally it might be cool to be bi-racial. I mean, what a fairytale to be able to marry a prince (just a wee bit of  sarcasm)! But then I wondered if I was using the term correctly. You see, I’m half white, half Mexican and lately it seemsContinue reading “I’m Bi”

Sixty is the New Forty Says the Aging Writer

I’ll be sixty in a week. There I said it! And I can throw myself a pity party if I want to! There’s a lot written about the emotional, spiritual and physical aspects of it all. To that end, I’ve chosen to write specifically about the two goals I’ve set that I must accomplish inContinue reading “Sixty is the New Forty Says the Aging Writer”

The Glass Castle Shatters My World

As the credits for The Glass Castle rolled, so did my tears. Once in the lobby, I excused myself and entered into a bathroom stall where I bawled my eyes out. Watching the The Glass Castle felt as if a scab was being ripped off as my tears flowed into the toilet (the loo isContinue reading “The Glass Castle Shatters My World”


At the center of the current chaos is a statue memorializing Robert E. Lee. It depicts the Confederacy’s top general, larger than life, astride a horse, both green with oxidation. In addition to many of Lee’s atrocities, soldiers under his command at the Battle of the Crater in 1864 massacred black Union soldiers who tried toContinue reading “METAL GODS”


June 24, 2017: My daughter is in labor today. And all of a sudden I’m remembering my labor with her. March 8, 1982: Earlier that day I was hanging out with a friend, Sue who was also pregnant, but not due for a couple of months. Sue was an expert, having survived something like aContinue reading “LABOR: SOMETHING WE ALL LIKE TO FORGET”


Wearing my running shoes and favorite stretch pants, I was almost ready as I drove across the valley, still groggy and with a cup of coffee in hand. But when I arrived at the Universal Studio train station and then circled the parking lot, it became clear I wasn’t going to find a spot. IContinue reading “I GOT WOKE”

Seeking Refuge Today, when you’re thinking about marching north to the farthest regions to live amongst an indigenous people in the frozen Arctic, perhaps you’d like to read a book about a man who did. “Seeking Refuge,” by John Stark and Ruthie Marlenee. Available on Amazon.

Surro-Ghost Writer

Feeling like an empty bag nowadays; skin crumpled up like a piece of paper. I have delivered a story—someone else’s child, the one I carried for almost nine months–to her mother. Had I known the pain of separation, perhaps I would not have taken on the role of surrogate writer (ghostwriter) in the first place.Continue reading “Surro-Ghost Writer”