Updated October 23, 2006

Maureen F. McHugh

My grandmother, father and uncles, c. 1920. 
From Time Value and Houses. 


Zhang Limin's son, 1989. 
From Essays on China

My last update linked to my blog where I talked about having Hodgkins. That's so much old news. I'm healthy and fine now.My blog about the whole thing is called No Feeling of Falling.

Where I get my Ideas with thanks to SFF Net and Minicon I mean, I don't much like romance novels anymore, and haven't since I was in my late teens, but I really liked the idea of having a handle on difference. But I had one idea. Remember, this is about where my ideas come from? And that idea was that romances are porn for women. If you notice how long it took me to get this one rather meager idea, you get a clue as to why the question, "Where do you get your ideas," get hard to answer. Particularly when asked by a serious middle school student.  

A frivolous essay on the Anti-SF Novel and writing, delivered to the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society Sept. 12, 1997. Another way to say this is to say that the purpose of the quest, besides collecting enough plot coupons to get to the end of the book, is to right a tremendous wrong and bring order back into the world or kingdom. Sometimes, as it is in Tolkien, the order is a less glorious order--maybe you've got men in charge instead of elves with all the reduction in aesthetics that implies--you know, instead of palaces among the trees we've got Elvis paintings on black velvet. 

Life as the Evil Stepmother, a cautionary tale.We joke about me being the evil stepmother. In fact, the joke is that I am the Nazi Evil Stepmother From Hell. It dispels tension to say it out loud. Actually, Adam and I do pretty good together. But the truth is that all stepmothers are evil. It is the nature of the relationship. It is, as far as I can tell, an unavoidable fact of step relationships. 

Fiction to read, and in association with Amazon.com, for sale on-line. "The sound of rifles was like the cracking of whips. Like the snapping of bones. My da and I came outside to shade our eyes from the sun and we watched the outrunners for the Tekse Clan come into the Mission. They made a great deal of racket; brass clattering, the men singing and firing their guns into the air. It started the dogs barking and scared our renndeer.

They came to buy whiskey. Or so we hoped. Sometimes when Tekse outrunners came, they just took it. They were all men of course. Clan outrunners were all bachelors. They did foolish things.

"They have a lot of rifles," my da said.

They had more guns than I had ever seen. Usually when outrunners came they had one or two guns. Guns are hard to get. But it looked as if almost every outrunner had a rifle." From MISSION CHILD (Avon '98)

Musings on The Self-World of Depression, or why are so many people depressed, anyway? If it is the human condition, is a fault in the neurological wiring? Is it the result of environmental stress--we humans are evolved for significantly different conditions than the ones we live in. Is there some ecological advantage to having some people depressed? Depressed people are probably less energetic, less likely to be the ones who go over the hill and explore. Maybe we depressed people provide a counter-balance to the more energetic. Maybe we sometimes survive because we sleep late rather than go out early and get killed. I don't know. It's hard to say what might be an advantage. Sickle cell anemia survives as a genetic problem because it is sometimes an environmental advantage against malaria. Someone born with two sickle cell genes doesn't survive long enough to reproduce, but one sickle cell gene makes a person somewhat resistant to the malaria parasite. It also makes the person sickly, but in many places in the world, malaria is such a problem that even some resistance is worth the disastrous effects of the illness. 

A very brief essay on Time, Value and Houses

Smith the dog. The obligatory picture of my pet. What would a personal webpage be without a picture of my dog? And a brief meditation on owning my first dog.

An essay about China, where I spent a year, and about Chinese food. (I spent a year in Shijiazhuang, China, teaching English at a teacher's college.)

Some essays on writing.

Bibliographies, Introductions and Miscellaneous Matter including bio and photo.

Favorite Links

The Credits: Maureen F. McHugh (mcq@en.com)