Ronda Rich

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Somebody always has it worse

Features Columnist

Oh, the stories people tell. Not always good ones, mind you but the kind that will make you fall down on your knees and thank the good Lord up above that you don’t have a story like that.

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Everyone has a book in ’em

Features Column

Over lunch the other day with friends — all in the newspaper business — I mentioned that I occasionally speak at writers’ conferences.

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‘The Last Lap’ recalls early NASCAR days

The Dixie Diva column

Somehow I ran across an out-of-print book called “The Last Lap.” It is now 15 years old but tells an intriguing, timeless tale of the early days of America’s first stock car racers.

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It happened in Memphis

Features Columnist

It happened in Memphis. A lot of history and interesting stuff occurs in that magical city that sits grandly on the Mississippi River.

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Truth always honorable

Features Columnist

The waitress set down the cup of coffee and I poured cream into the hot, black liquid while quietly reflecting, pondering something.

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Story’s great, fuzzy on date

Features Columnist

My parents told great stories. I’ve told you that. How they would both weave long, intriguing tales from not much of a story or one that was so good to begin with that it took little embellishment.

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What’s in that bowl? Memories

Features Columnist

Just as Tink started up the stairs, stepping slowly and carefully as he balanced a bowl and a cup of coffee to keep them from sloshing, I appeared around the corner. I paused, watched and debated silently whether to speak.

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Triumph can turn to tragedy

Features Columnist

When Peggy Sue went away, just fell off the face of the earth with no warning or even a holler, we all wondered where she had gone.

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Mama always ‘figured it out’

The Dixie Diva column

Mama was stubborn. “Set in her ways,” is what country folks call it and, boy, was she. When she made up her mind, nothing stopped her.

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Shaped-note singing has a heavenly sound

The Dixie Diva column

One day over lunch, my new-to-the-South-but-thoroughly-loving-it husband commented on the choir singing at our church which is led by my brother-in-law, Rodney.

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Heaven’s blessed, but I’m distressed

Features Columnist

It seems too many loved ones recently have said good-bye to this vale of grief and sorrow and said hello to sweet eternity.

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My luck has to change

In the past several years, I have had as much luck visiting the historically preserved home of Southern iconic writer, Eudora Welty, as I would have had when she was alive. The front door is always shut to me.

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Third row has precious memories

The Dixie Diva column

To be just downright honest, I never expected to miss him this much. And, if the deeper truth be told, perhaps it isn’t just the loss of a singular man, though great and admirable he was.

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Just what will people think?

The Dixie Diva

A major New York publisher sent a review copy of a much touted novel called “If Jack’s In Love.” Because I write about the South and because this book had won the Willie Morris Award for Southern Fiction, the book’s publicist followed up with an email.

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Living a dream is the true reward

The Dixie Diva

It has long been my belief that the dreams tucked into our hearts are the compass we’re given to find our direction in life. Children know at an early age what they’re called to do.