Wingspread Ezine for April, 2022

“Spreading your wings in a perplexing world”
April, 2022                                                                              James P. Hurd

Please forward, and share this Ezine with anyone. Thank you.


  • Easter thoughts
  • New story: “The Girls at Torrey Bible”
  • A question for you to answer
  • Puzzler for April
  • Writer’s Corner
  • How to purchase Wingspread: A Memoir of Faith and Flying
  • Wingspread E-zine subscription information
  • “Words of wisdom”



Upside-down time. Jesus enters Jerusalem victoriously, only to be spat upon. Judas betrays him, but curiously, Jesus seems to have anticipated it. He forbids his disciples to resist his arrest, although he is the conquering king. He is a victim of human sin, but he declares he came to forgive sin. The kingdom has arrived, he says, and yet it seems the kingdom is smashed to the ground. He says “it is finished,” but he knows the finish comes after three days. The horror of the cross is transformed into a symbol of joy, a symbol that people wear on a chain around their necks. Upside-down times. And yet, Christians declare that Jesus came, lived, and died “for us.”

New story: “The Girls at Torrey Bible”

[An excerpt from my novel, East Into Unbelief, soon to be released.]

March came, the days brightened and the weather turned warmer and windy, the trees dragging their leaves like nets. Sean walked across the quad and up to his English class. He loved some of the poetry they were reading, but he would never admit that to his friends. And Christian Education class. Mr. Getsch’s lectures fascinated Sean—he taught them how to teach, how to start a file drawer. Or, maybe Sean just enjoyed sitting next to Linda Fuller from Manchester-by-the-Sea.

Slightly built, Linda’s brown hair fell carelessly to her shoulders, framing her brown eyes. Usually she wore a white blouse with short sleeves, her pleated skirt falling just to her knees. and black flats—casual but not sloppy.

Fascinating, exotic Linda. Sean loved her self-confidence, her brio. Fuller: Sean loved the name. It sounded English. He knew nothing about New England, but he loved her New England accent. She told him, “Yes—the town was founded in 1645, just after the Pilgrims . . . Mother belongs to the Daughtahs of the American Revolution.” She said cah for car; sneakahs for tennis shoes. Imagine growing up, not in Santa Ana, but in Manchester-by-the-Sea! . . . .

     To read more, click here:   The Girls at Torrey Bible | Wingspread (

(*Please leave a comment on the website. Thanks.)


What was the last good book you read and why did you like it? Please email the title and author to me at I’ll put some of the responses in our next Ezine. Thanks!

Puzzler for the month for April

(Thanks to Car Talk puzzlers)

Not long ago, I spent some time vacationing in a well-known place. It was also well known for pickpockets and other unsavory characters.

When I checked into the hotel, the folks at the desk were quick to warn me of the dangers of certain areas. They insisted that I would be much safer not leaving the hotel grounds, and I could spend all of my money right there.

I chose to disregard them, of course, and when I visited some of these areas, I saw signs all over the place warning people to be on their guard for pickpockets.

By the end of my visit, I found out that police reports about people who claimed to be pickpocketed had dramatically risen since the signs were put up.

And that’s the question: can you explain why pickpocketing rates increased in spite of the warning signs being put up?

Answer to last month’s puzzler: 

To recap, a man and his son get into a car accident and both are rushed to the hospital. The surgeon rushes into the operating room, takes one look at the boy and exclaims, ” I can’t operate. That’s my son!”

How could this be?!

Answer: The surgeon was the boy’s mother. (I know . . . that was too easy!)

Writers’ Corner

Watch for my upcoming novel: East Into Unbelief

Sean loses his father, his best girlfriend, his life dream, and finally, his faith. But how can he be a good atheist, especially when he’s stuck at Torrey Bible Institute? He can’t see it, but grace is coming . . .

Tip of the month: Natalie Goldberg recommends timed writing. Set a time (five minutes, twenty minutes, or . . .). Then just write. Here are the rules: 1) write continuously the whole time without stopping. 2) no going back to correct grammar or anything else. The goal is to turn off your logical, editing brain and drill down into your creative subconscious. Then later, you can pick out the gems and throw away the rest.

Word of the Month:  Thesaurus. A species of writer that went extinct due to using too many passive verbs and dangling participles.

 What should you do with people who complain about what you wrote about them in your memoirs? Anne Lamott counsels, “If people wanted you to write better about them, they should’ve behaved better.”

Schadenfreude: That warm feeling you get when you find grammatical errors in a well-published author’s work.

Buy James Hurd’s Wingspread: A Memoir of Faith and Flying  How childhood (Fundamentalist) faith led to mission bush-piloting in South America—and Barbara. Buy it here:  (or order it at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, etc.) 
See pics here related to Wingspread: Of Faith and Flying:

Follow “james hurd” on Facebook, or “@hurdjp” on Twitter

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Words of wisdom

Did some financial planning and it looks like I can retire at 62 and live eleven minutes.

I hate telling people I’m a taxidermist. When they ask what I do everyday, I say, “O, you know—stuff.”

I’ve finally told my suitcases there will be no holiday this year. Now I’m dealing with emotional baggage . . .

Pretty wild how we used to eat cake after someone had blown on it . . . Good times . . .

If you think nobody cares, just try missing a couple of mortgage payments.

Texter warning sign

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