Friday, February 29, 2008

Wever women to speak at civic center - MP NEWS.NET

byMira Cash-Davis
Nancy Harless, a retired nurse practitioner from Wever, has authored a collection of 21 short stories titled "Womankind: Connection and Wisdom around the World"....Harless began traveling as a nurse. She has traveled "always on a shoestring" even in retirement, because she enjoys it. In her book "Womankind," Harless retains an innocent writer's voice. She reveals a facet of her own good will in the light of each story..... In another story, Harless asks about an end to the shootings in Serbo-Croatia. A Serbian woman replies, "Oh, Nancy, you are so ... what is the word for like a little girl ... innocence?" before explaining to Harless the code of retribution among the Muslim Albanians. ....... Even in dire circumstances, Harless finds her own hope at the bottom of the proverbial box of chaos. She provides readers with an orderly, digestible view of the world's differences through her lens of not only tolerance for now, but hope for later......

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Woman who writes about women visits Albert Lea

Albert Lea Tribune - by Sarah Kirchner

Nancy Leigh Harless spent the last 10 years traveling the world and dedicating her time helping others in foreign countries. During her travels she met a lot of women, each with her own story to tell, which Harless captured in her journals. ....Harless was in Albert Lea Friday afternoon, outside of Book World in the Northbridge Mall, sharing her stories, signing books and reading some of her favorite passages. She brought many pictures of the women she met in her travels.
“Womankind” is a collection of short stories from Harless’ work across the world as a women’s health nurse practitioner.....Half the stories in the book are from Harless’ nursing experiences and half are taken from the women she met. ....Harless’ first trip, with her husband, was in 1997. A native of Iowa, she and four others went on a group study exchange to Guatemala and Belize. On that trip she saw both extremes of the countries, the poor and the very wealthy.
“That experience changed the way I want to travel,” she said, and exposed her to the need in the world.....Everywhere Harless went she said there were women with stories to tell and someone to tell it. “I have an ear for so many stories, so now it’s time for a voice,” she said....
The writing came after the travels. Harless and her husband didn’t know during their trips that a book would come out of it, even though she recorded all her experiences in her journals. However, those journals were kept for herself, with no intentions to publish a collection. Over the 10 years of travels, a few minor works had been published in nursing journals.....“Each of the women taught me something or retaught me,” Harless said....Harless toured Iowa and Nebraska with her book. Friday was her first time in Minnesota, and she chose to stop in Albert Lea.

Sunday, February 17, 2008


Theses are excerpts from the article written by MAry Stegmeir in the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier on Saturday - 2-2-08.

In 1997, Nancy Harless and four other Iowa professionals spent a month living in Belize and Guatemala through a Rotary International exchange program. "I've seen poverty here in the United States, but even our poorest are rich by the standards in Guatemala and Belize," said Harless, who visited villages without running water and worked in hospitals where trash lined the hallways. "Nothing would ever be the same for me again."

The nurse immediately started planning a return trip to Belize with her husband, Norm. In 1999 the couple opened a women's clinic in Punta Gorda. And over the next nine years, she visited 15 countries, often using her trips to do service work and learn more about the world. .....

Her experiences off the beaten path are recorded in "Womankind: Connection & Wisdom Around the World." ...."If there is an overall theme to the book, I would say it is one of hope," said the retired 60-year-old. "I think the world can be changed one person at a time. That's the only way it's going to happen." .....

"I think the book appeals to people's curiosity about other cultures," said Emily Longseth, merchandising manager at Waterloo's Barnes & Noble store. "We all have challenges, and we all deal with them in different ways." .....

"One of our editors described it as an 'I am woman, hear me roar,' book," said Kyle Kent, a managing representative with Tate. "Through her stories, (Harless) talks about the connections that all women share, no matter where they live." ....

"We might speak different languages, we dress differently, we eat different foods, but at our basic core we are all alike," Harless said. "All the women in the book care about making a better life for themselves and their families."

We can read the entire article on-line at and search the archieves 2-2-08.

Monday, February 4, 2008


Winter 2008 has been a long, cold hard one. I received an email from a friend last week. She said,"Isn't this this perfect weather for writing!" Somehow I just can't muster up her enthusisam, so I want to go on record right now as saying - THIS IS THE LAST WINTER I WILL STAY HOME IN THE MIDWEST! Next year I want to be doing something like in the picture to the right - swimming in the ocean with my sister!

Hope you are staying warm in your neck of the woods. We had a blizzard last night ocmplete with thunder and lightening. Something about that is just plain wrong.

River Lights 2nd Edition

River Lights 2nd Edition


Norm's Masterpiece