I asked Anne Leigh Parrish to tell us something about the origin of the stories in her new book:
stories in All The Roads That Lead From Home take place or are associated with the fictional town of Dunston, New
York. Dunston represents Ithaca, home of
Cornell University, where I was born. At
fourteen I moved out of state. When I went
back, many, many years later, I found the town had never left me. It was a shock to feel how strong my memories
were, and how deep they went. One way or
another, the stories I wrote afterwards set themselves there.
"The Dunston in my collection may resemble
the real town only on the surface. There's the lake, the rolling hills, the brutal winters. The campus and the gorges appear, too, also
the problem of student suicides that made the papers last year. To my mind, an outline of place is enough to evoke the fuller substance,
if rendered carefully. I hope I
"As I was seized by the past, so are
the people in my stories. A woman is
visited by her mother's ghost who takes up residence in order to deliver a
cryptic message of redemption. Another
grapples with a long-held belief that her father doesn’t love her. One is haunted by a lie she told as a way to
cope with her sister's death.
"Overall I'd say that my goal with the collection
was to suggest that while roads take us away from home, they can, quite
unexpectedly, return us to what we left behind and what might claim us once
For more information, visit Anne's website, Anne Leigh Parrish, or her book's page at Press 53: All the Roads That Lead from Home.