About CortlandWriter…

After I retired in 2007, following 35 years of teaching middle school language arts, we IMG_6437.jpegdecided to make some changes in our lives.

Moving away from a busy, fast
-paced western suburb of Chicago, to a very small town several miles west, out among the corn and bean fields, where a brand new comfortable house awaited, my wife and I began the task of settling in to a very different way of living.

The result–all these years later–is that we enjoy it very much and don’t miss the massive traffic flow nor the constant hyper-speed pace of life in general. Small towns have their obvious limitations, but they also have so much more to offer.

Why  I blog…

Once established in our new home and surroundings, I discovered the blog world and soon began my own–Down Many Roads–whose focus is about my own writing journey down so many roads.

Of course, living here in northern Illinois, there is an abundance of topics about which to write and share in this blog: The beauty of spring in the rural land around me; the golden harvest every fall; the wild cold winters; my kids and grandkids.

The writing life…

Inspired by some wonderful teachers as I was growing up in Indiana and Ohio, I’ve pursued a dream of somehow fitting into the role of author. Those teachers brought literature to life for me, and I’ve never forgotten. My love of reading and writing came through them in those long ago classrooms!

Most weekday mornings now, after that first Sunrise over Maple Parkcup of coffee with my wife, I am busily at work on my MacBook Pro, hammering away in Scrivener, chasing that dream. It is most definitely an  exciting, ongoing process.

Published work…

In March of 2014, my second novel, THE GOOD LUCK HIGHWAY, was published in paperback format as well as a Kindle Edition and Nook Book. My first novel BLACK WOLF LODGE was published in 2010, and I’ve since written and published two short stories: “Hobo Willie” and “Pinewood Farm.” 


Come visit and stay a while and see where those roads take us!

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19 thoughts on “About CortlandWriter…

  1. Mark, first of all, thanks for following my blog! Secondly, our recent paths sound so similar. I retired in 2006 from the hectic and stressful life of working for attorneys for the better part of 35 or so years. I’d always loved writing but never had the time until … retirement! We live in a small suburb of Portland, OR, in the midst of 25 old growth Doug firs, some cedars, and one lone pine. Although we’re 10 minutes from anything, we’re secluded enough to live the life of hermits. Together 24/7, my husband and I enjoy what we’re doing each and every day. So, I know how good it feels to have that first cup of coffee and then got to “work” and have fun!

    I noticed the comment above from Candace Johnson of Change It Up Editing. I just happened to meet Candace face-to-face here in Portland last Thursday. Three plus hours over coffee, we learned a lot about each other and talk a lot about writing. She’s one lady who really knows her stuff!

    1. Thanks so much, Sherrey! You live in beautiful country from all I hear (never had the pleasure to visit…YET!) I am always looking to improve as a writer, and I look forward to gleaning helpful suggestions and tips from your posts. 🙂

  2. You’re an excellent writer, Mark, and the pictures are beautiful. I never thought I would want to hear about harvest or corn fields but somehow you make them sound like fascinating art forms—this is not an easy feat. I commend you and look forward to reading more from you as I’m now a follower of your great blog:)

    1. Thank you, Laura, for the very kind words! And thank you for joining my journey by following. Of course there’s much more to write about besides corn fields and harvests, and I will be sharing lots of those things along the way. Come back often! 🙂

  3. Hello Mark ,
    I enjoyed reading about you. Writing is one of my chosen activities post retirement. I published a couple of books through Partridge, the e-publishing wing of Penguin. The first was, Hartland- The spirit of a family,” which was about my immediate family and the second was,” Building Winning Partnerships,” which was about an outsourcing programme I launched a decade or so ago. Both these efforts were in the nature of just getting familiar with the world of publishing and marketing books.
    I am now researching and doing the pre-work for a book on the Anglo Indian community most of whom migrated from India to Australia, Canada and the UK from the seventies and onwards.
    I would love to read about the progress you are making on the book you are working on and your experiences with life around you and things that move you.

    1. Thank you,hari008. I appreciate your sharing much about your interests. The current book I’m working on is a rather slow go at the moment–fiction–but I’m making some progress. I think I need to lock myself in my writing room for the next month and get the thing done! At any rate, I hope you’ll come back often and share your own writing progress. Your present research project sounds fascinating! All the best!:-)

  4. It’s a nice blog! It’s great to read a blog of someone who’s spend his life teaching people and changing their lives into something meaningful! Great… wish you success and happiness in blogging realm!

    just a suggestion (I know it’s not asked for, but I’ll make it nevertheless cause it’s intended with good heart) …your pictures should be bigger, they surely look better on your blog!

    happy blogging!

  5. Where did you grow up in Indiana? I moved there from the South and graduated from Anderson High School in 1969, home of Indians. We had one of the largest high school basketball arenas in the states. I hear it was torn down now, so sad. I could not believe how big it was and how popular basketball when I moved there. Of course, football is that big down here. I loved living there and have many fond memories of Indiana.

  6. You certainly are right about the rabid enthusiasm for basketball, especially in that part of Indiana. I grew up in Huntington and can attest to the fact that basketball is a religion. The summer before I started high school (’64), however, we moved to Ohio, a football hotbed! I wasn’t very good at playing either, but have always enjoyed being a spectator from a safe distance. 🙂

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