Profiles for MSN.com

My series of articles for MSN.com Re:Discover included these character profiles as part of the Albuquerque travel guide.

→ Full Clip: Following a Passion, Preserving a Legacy. When tinsmith Jason Younis y Delgado goes to work, he brings Albuquerque history alive.

→ Full Clip: Discovering the Call of the Wild. Albuquerque Wolf Whisperer Stephanie Kaylan left her L.A. life as a professional jazz pianist and studio musician to settle in the mountains. (“And I ain’t moving!”)

→ Full Clip: Inspired by Albuquerque’s Hidden Treasures. Performance poet Carlos Contreras secured his place in Albuquerque history as a member of the city’s winning 2005 National Poetry Slam team.

→ Full Clip: Historical Hospitality at The Spy House. Kara and Steve Grant run the bed-and-breakfast where an American sold atomic bomb secrets to the Soviets in one of New Mexico’s most notorious espionage cases.

Reading with a Writer’s Eye: Clues on Craft (for Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market 2013)

Chapter in Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market 2013 (Writer’s Digest Books) by Tania Casselle.

“What’s your best tip for new writers?” That’s a question I’ve asked more than 50 authors in radio interviews, and they’re often quick to reply: “Read! Read a lot. Read with a writer’s eye.”

It’s advice that newer writers sometimes take with a grain of salt, perhaps suspecting that those already on the publishing ladder are just trying to sell more books. And even if we do take their advice, what does it mean to read with a writer’s eye? We don’t want to sound like someone else, we have our own voice and style. So how can reading other people’s work practically help with our own writing?

Chapter includes interviews with authors Pam Houston, Lisa Tucker, John Dufresne, John Nichols, Robin Romm, Tara Ison, Don Waters, Robert Wilder.

Book Review of Best of the West (for High Country News)

A Western State of Mind
Book Review by Tania Casselle of Best of the West 2009: New Stories from the Wide Side of the Missouri. Edited by James Thomas and D. Seth Horton

This impressive anthology showcases 18 stories from emerging writers and literary stars, selected from publications as diverse as The New Yorker and Hayden’s Ferry Review. Part of the pleasure in reading it arises from reflecting on what “The West” really means. What characterizes a Western story, beyond simply being set in the vast and varied lands west of the Missouri River?

Read the full book review at High Country News.

Georgia O’Keeffe Museum (for Hyatt Destinations)

“When I got to New Mexico, that was mine,” said Georgia O’Keeffe, and she proved it by capturing the essence of the red rock lands around her beloved Ghost Ranch and Abiquiu, about 60 miles northwest of Santa Fe.

→  Full Clip of Immortal Images for Hyatt Destinations magazine on the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. The magazine is published by HCP/Aboard, The Miami Herald Media Company’s custom publishing division.

Contemporary Native American Artists

Through the Photographer’s Eye:
Interview with photographer Kitty Leaken
by Tania Casselle

You’ve probably already seen the work of photographer Kitty Leaken, in magazines and in books including Cooking with Cafe Pasqual’s and Cooking with Johnny Vee.

When publisher Gibbs Smith asked her if she had any other book ideas, Leaken most certainly did. The result is Contemporary Native American Artists, with photography by Leaken and words by Suzanne Deats. It’s a colorful slab of a book, showcasing 18 outstanding artists, and portraying the artists’ work, the artists at work, and sometimes the artists at play. On a first flick through, you register that the production is gorgeous and the photography vibrant and powerful. But unlike so many lavish coffee table books that become a part of the furniture after an initial read (at least in my house) this one draws you back, draws you deeper, revealing new layers in the intimate visual and written portraits.

→ Full Clip of interview with Kitty Leaken about the making of Contemporary Native American Artists. For Local Flavor magazine, August 2012.

Taos School of Music (for New Mexico Magazine)

Taos School of Music Celebrates 50 Years

The mountains come alive with the sound of music again this summer when the Taos School of Music celebrates its 50th anniversary season, featuring the chamber music stars of today—and tomorrow.

Feature for New Mexico Magazine (June 2012) on the history and highlights of the Taos School of Music and the annual Chamber Music Festival featuring Jupiter String Quartet, Borromeo String Quartet, American String Quartet, and Brentano String Quartet.

Book Review of Brian Hart’s Then Came the Evening (for High Country News)


Tough justice, hard fate
Book Review by Tania Casselle of
Then Came the Evening by Brian Hart

Vietnam veteran Bandy, believing his wife died in the fire that destroyed their cabin, goes crazy with rage and remorse and commits a crime that makes the reader gasp. Bandy, who’s also half-drunk at the time, ends up in jail but he was a damaged soul before the novel even opens. As we quickly learn, Iona isn’t dead after all. Pregnant with Bandy’s child, she left him for another man.

Read the full book review at High Country News.

Book Review of Rick Collignon’s Madewell Brown (for High Country News)


The Stories We Believe:
Book review by Tania Casselle of
Madewell Brown by Rick Collignon

Madewell Brown is the fourth novel in Rick Collignon’s “Guadalupe” series, set in an imaginary village in northern New Mexico. But it reads as a stand-alone, even while spiraling back to explore the fate of a character introduced in Perdido, the second in the series. It’s bold that Collignon, as an Anglo, writes intimately not only about Hispanic culture but then adds in an African-American to stir his fictional plot.

Read the full book review at High Country News.

Book review of Summer Wood’s Wrecker (for High Country News)

Good-enough mothers
Book review by Tania Casselle of
Wrecker by Summer Wood

In her second novel, Wrecker, New Mexico author Summer Wood draws on her personal experience as a foster parent. Wrecker is a bruiser of a boy who “seemed to need to feel his body collide with the physical world to know he existed.” He’s born and mostly raised outdoors in a story that is less about him than about the adults attempting to guide this troubled child through the wilderness of life.

Read the full book review at High Country News.