Category Archives: Beginnings

‘Certain Liberties’ Publication Day

‘Certain Liberties’ Publication Day

Just in time for your summer reading list, Certain Liberties hits shelves today! It is available to buy from and other online book sellers worldwide. It also comes complete with a section dedicated to book club questions!

Thank you all for your continued support and encouragement as Emily Alden prepares for her debut performance! You can find the Kindle and paperback editions on Amazon. Both are easily accessible from my Amazon author page.


“In this historical novel set in the 19th century, a young woman of uncommon musical talent longs for the freedom that’s typically reserved for men . . . The author masterfully sets the historical stage – the United States as it devolves into the Civil War – and she addresses the issue of slavery with nuance and rigor . . . a riveting storyline. Emily is a delightfully complex mix of defiance and prudence, as she learns early in life that “there’s a very narrow line to negotiate between freedom and responsibility for women.” . . . Stark’s prose is reliably lucid and consistently faithful to the setting . . . An emotionally affecting and historically edifying tale.” – Kirkus Reviews


A small request: When you order one of my books from Amazon, I would be forever grateful if you would leave a review for other readers to see. In this digital age, Amazon reviews are in direct relation to the online visibility of a book. The more people review the book, the more people will see it in their book search. Thank you!

Start Here!

The red arrow leaves nothing to doubt. It points at the start of the labyrinth to the true beginning of the maze. I don’t much like the look of it. This is not the gentle, fun beginning of a child’s puzzle from my girlhood memories. I can already see there’s trouble ahead and I haven’t… Continue Reading

This Old House

This old house feels so new. ‘Born’ in the 1800’s, two years after the end of the civil war, to be precise, it nonetheless has the fresh energy and hopeful lift of youth.  Of course, identifying when an historic house was built always raises more questions than it answers. What signified the start of its… Continue Reading

What’s The Difference?

A group of seven seemingly disparate people came together recently to begin a creative workshop experience unlike any other; at least, none they’d come in contact with before. The idea germinated in a lecture given on a Mozart concerto at the Julliard School. I had the good fortune of stumbling on it at the invitation… Continue Reading

Spring in our Hearts

by Sidney S. Stark Whanne that April with his shoures sote (Sweet Rain) The droughte (dryness) of March hath perced (pierced) to the rote (root)… Canterbury Tales. Prologue. Line 1. The prologue to Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (above) is familiar to most of us who remember it from our struggles in eighth grade English class.… Continue Reading

Lifelong Learning

by Sidney S. Stark The phrase came into focus for me at my first college graduation. That matriculation was a two year foray to acquire an associate’s degree. In 1963 two years seemed like more than enough of a commitment as I was burned out from my academically competitive high school years. The reduced timeframe… Continue Reading