Travels with Charley and John Steinbeck

May 25, 2010

I’m dyslexic. As you may not be surprised to hear, learning to read wasn’t easily accomplished by me.

I’m an author. I have self-published MAYNELY A MYSTERY — a cozy mystery set on Mayne Island.

How did I do that? How did I evolve from a reluctant reader to an author in love with words?

Well, let’s see…

My parents were ardent readers. My dad always had at least four books beside his bed — a bookmark in each. My parents read to each other at the supper table — they read to me. They shared books such as Good Morning, Miss Dove.

In elementary school, I had a devoted remedial teacher who focused on my gift of imagination to encourage me to learn.

In junior high school, I had an engaging English teacher who further developed my passion for story by offering books such as The Crucible by Arthur Miller, Tess of the d’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy Ethan Forme by Edith Wharton, and Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck.

She introduced me to John Steinbeck and I fell in love. I spent more and more time with him. I joined him as he and his French poodle Charley travelled the United States. He shared his stories and I wanted to share mine.

I wrote throughout my awkward teens — endless stories.

Writing became like breathing. Such a part of who I was that I couldn’t recall a time when I was without a pen.

I moved from Steinbeck’s books to others — many, many others. I forgot his voice.

Lately, however, I pulled East of Eden from my bookshelf. I rediscovered his voice and the debt I owe him.

Join me on my journey, visit:

5 Responses to “Travels with Charley and John Steinbeck”

  1. holessence Says:

    Leanne – I thoroughly enjoy you post.

    My husband and I are voracious readers. So much so that we haven’t had a television in our home for over thirty years. Bliss!

    I put a link to your blog on the Reluctant Blogger’s post today. The author (Jeff) asked people what affirmations they use. I shared with him the one I recently borrowed from you. Here’s a link to his blog:

    Laurie Buchanan

  2. Thank you, Laurie, it is so nice to hear from you again.
    Confession: I’m a TV junkie. I have been able to reduce my injections to under three hours a day. I don’t sit there idle, however. I sit, watch TV, and knit. How do you survive without Dancing with the Stars and Survivor? : )
    I have a set daily reading time each day, as well. And that’s about as much structure as I can stand…oh…yes…and of course my writing — bum in chair.
    Thank you for the link I will toddle on over there today.
    All the best,

  3. PragmaticMom Says:

    I wanted to share my list for reluctant boy readers at


    Pragmatic Mom
    Type A Parenting for the Modern World
    I blog on children’s lit, education and parenting

  4. Thank you for your interest in this blog. However, there’s a lot more fun over here —

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