It’s not so much a list of accomplishments as a portrait of a life

I’ve been many things throughout the course of my life, and I suppose they all add up to who I am now.

I am a small-college-town, Ohio-born daughter, a wife, a mom of cats. I am a global product manager by day and a writer in all the spare moments, the nooks and crannies of time I can steal for myself.

I was a student and I have the degrees to prove it (BS in Magazine Journalism, MBA in Marketing, what seems like many years ago) but my love of learning is perpetual, eternal. …

Travel, freedom, symbolism, and escape

It used to be you could hop a train to just about anywhere. You’d have your choice of an express or a local, with regular, dependable routes.

These days, it’ll take you 15 hours to get from Harrisburg, PA to Cleveland, a 325-mile jaunt through the Allegheny Mountains.

I, unfortunately, know all about this because I researched taking a train home after an unexpected emergency room stop during a business trip. I was unable to drive my rental car back to Cleveland but was worried about flying with severe, newly diagnosed sudden onset vertigo. …

When friends die, music helps us grieve and carries us through

How do we explain the passing of people in our lives who were supposed to be immortal? I’ve lost two dear friends since mid-April, one of them just this morning: First Rob, a blazing star black hole supernova, and then Mark, a kind, never-met-a-stranger, hippie teddy bear (if it’s even possible to describe legends in so few words).

My peripheral vision plays tricks on me as if I could catch a glimpse of their shadows, to my left and then my right, painting postcard memories of times when all of us were so very much younger but maybe wiser too.

Surprise! Money isn’t one of them.

In some ways, it’s almost comical — News Break, the platform writers love to hate. Whether in Medium articles we’ve written (myself included) or posts within the Facebook News Break Official Creator Community, we grumble and moan, carp and whine.

We complain that our articles aren’t published fast enough or protest when they’re rejected and we don’t know why. We tell anyone who will listen that we’ll be out the door once the coveted base pay is discontinued.

Of course, there are a few chipper folks in the Facebook group who remind us that we should be grateful for the…

Perfect for your post-pandemic party, when you’re ready

I was asked, recently, whether I have a signature dish, something I’m known for making. My response was that really, I don’t. One of my flaws in the realm of cooking is that I enjoy trying new recipes so much that I often forget to go back and make the things I like again.

But I suppose, back when folks regularly had potlucks and parties and such, they often hoped I would bring my baked spinach dip.

I’ve been making this simple but delectable dip, adapted from a Taste of Home recipe, for more than a decade. People often ask…

Shut Up and Write Has Been a Pandemic Game Changer For Me

Amidst the devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic, we find the occasional silver lining. Organizations unable to continue meeting in person took their game online, and those of us who might have been hesitant to show up for a live event (Hello, I’m an introvert — nice to meet you!) were bold enough to participate through the relative safety of the world wide web.

Had it not been for COVID-19, I might not have searched the Internet for online writing groups. I was quickly directed to

Thanks to Dean Jones, aka The Well Seasoned Librarian

Those who know me the best are well aware that my often-bubbly exterior hides a shyness and social awkwardness that can sometimes be paralyzing.

I’m pretty open about that because I know I’m not alone and I think it’s important to remind ourselves that we never know what’s going on behind the outer layer somebody presents to the world.

While I have a distinct and often-pesky rebellious streak, it can be difficult for me to venture too far outside my comfort zone. If anything, the pandemic has amplified that tendency.

I’ve rarely left my house in the past 14 months…

Refresh your evening meal with dishes traditionally served in the morning

I’ve always enjoyed eating breakfast foods at odd times of the day. I was the kid who wanted cereal for an after-school snack, and my mom’s pancake suppers (made in the electric skillet, of course) were high on my list of favorite meals.

Likewise, I will eat just about anything for breakfast, much to my husband’s bemusement. I don’t typically care for sweet things in the morning, though, preferring savory fare like scrambled tofu and vegetables or eggs with hearty grains and sauteed greens. In a pinch, any dinner leftovers will do (including a cold slice of pizza).

When I…

Keep It Simple Cooking Series

Sure, you can!

It’s still chilly in Northeast Ohio. Once the temperature rises (and my temper along with it) it’ll be months before I’m willing to turn on the oven in my non-air-conditioned home.

But for now, I’m craving comfort food, and meatloaf fits the bill.

After my husband and I stopped eating red meat at home (for the most part), I embarked upon a quest to find a turkey meatloaf that reminded us of our childhoods. One where we wouldn’t think about the fact that it was made with turkey and not beef.

Turns out all I needed was my mom’s old…

Live Concert Series

Sometimes the journey is even more memorable than the event itself

I didn’t know it at the time, but I fell in love with Cleveland back in 1998, more than a decade before I’d actually move here. Life and fate have a tendency to pull us along circuitous paths — very few straight lines and neat little boxes tied up with bows — which can drive those of us who like a good plan a tiny bit insane.

My husband and I, who’d been dating for a couple of years at that point, went camping on Lake Erie’s Kelleys Island, as we often did in the late 90s. Strangely, we camped…

Kathryn Dillon

Life’s a journey. Sometimes a peaceful hike in the woods, sometimes a screaming joyride down a dark highway. I’m on a quest to discover my truth by sharing it.

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