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Maida Vale Publishing

Family Stories

Family Stories

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By Judith Serin

Short Stories - Memoir - Paperback

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The short memoirs in Family Stories begin with:


They may not be true. They grow for years from a few words you heard on a summer evening when you leaned sleepily against your mother’s side as she talked with friends over your head. Or you have told them so many times that you can’t remember the first telling. They become trees with dark branches, rustling leaves you can hide in. You fall asleep in these trees and dream. Maybe you dreamt parts of some stories; maybe you made some up completely. Now there is no one you can ask.


This collection welcomes readers inside the warm, funny, confusing, and deep experiences of one person’s perspective on their family. You’ll recognize your own moments in these memories while feeling your way into a family that’s not yours—and the joy, wisdom, and heartache in knowing others more intimately, with recollections of family, history, connections, and revelations. These second-person memoirs are accompanied by family photos, so readers see the family and also find the universal in the personal. The creative nonfiction in Family Stories is indirectly autobiographical. Readers enter the life of the author through the lenses of family, art, and illness—things that are important in the life of the author. In “Memories of Art,” the personal history of the speaker entwines with paintings, dance, and music. Memory then takes on a more hazy feel—alongside beautiful watercolor illustrations from Masami Inoue—in the section “Dream Geography.” “Days of Sky” wraps up the collection with reflections during a time of illness. Family Stories captures the wonder and mystery of our relationships, our hearts, and the power of the arts.

Judith Serin’s fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction have been published or are forthcoming in her collections Gravity (2022, Eyewear Publishing), Hiding in the World (Diane di Prima's Eidolon Editions), and Family Stories (2024, Eyewear), and in numerous journals and anthologies. Serin taught writing and literature at California College of the Arts for many years.

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