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Member Spotlight: Linda Rabben

author Linda Rabben and an image of her book Through a Glass Darkly

Why is writing important to you and why do you think it’s an important medium for the world? Coming from a family of writers, I’ve dedicated myself to writing from an early age. It’s the basis of my identity and my vocation. Writing is vital to the maintenance of civilization. Through writing we uphold basic human values of decency, integrity and compassion in the face of conflict, misunderstanding, intolerance and hatred.

What are your tried and tested remedies to cure writer’s block? I write something–from an email message to a book chapter–every day for at least 15 minutes.

What is your favorite time to write? In the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening and at night.

What’s the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever received and would like to impart to other writers? From one of my thesis advisers: “It doesn’t have to be brilliant; it just has to pass.” And from my colleagues at a human rights organization: “Better to do a few things well than everything badly.”

What excites you most about being a writer in today’s age? The conviction that every little bit helps. No effort, no matter how modest, is wasted.

Linda Rabben’s Through a Glass Darkly: The Social History of Stained Glass in Baltimore is out next month.