Dad, daughter to talk writing |

Dad, daughter to talk writing

Sands Hall
ALL | GrassValleyArchive

Sands Hall’s conversations with her father, Oakley Hall, are abuzz about the power of words.

Oakley Hall, who was the director of the University of California at Irvine’s writing program for 20 years, has written several short stories and more than 25 novels about the American West and San Francisco in the 1890s.

Sands Hall, a Nevada City actress, director and writing teacher, had her first novel, “Catching Heaven,” published in 2000.

Since “Catching Heaven” was published and her plays – an adaptation of “Little Women” in 1999 and “Fair Use” in 2001 – were produced, Hall believes she has even more in common with her father.

“We’ll talk about books and then say, ‘Oh, is that what you’re up to?’ It’s a great pleasure with my father to talk about the craft, the art of writing. We’ll ask, ‘Have you read this book or that?'” Hall said.

Her father also enjoys their conversations. “It’s very interesting. She’s a very educated and brilliant woman. Plus she’s a terrific teacher,” said Oakley Hall.”

Sands Hall’s recent conversations with her father have taken the writing references up a few notches. She’s working on a historical novel about the western United States, set in the late 1800s.

“We’re having great fun. We’ll see each other at a party and end up sharing our research rapture,” said Sands Hall.

She has followed her father’s advice since she was a 17-year-old “moping around.”

“I remember saying I just want to be a writer. He looked at me and said, ‘Sands, do you want to be a writer or do you want to write?’ That was a wake-up call to just shut up and write,” she said.

The Halls will talk about the business of writing during Wednesday’s monthly Sierra Writers meeting in Nevada City.


WHAT: Sierra Writers club meeting

WHEN: 6:30 p.m. Wednesday

WHERE: Community Room, Nevada County Library, 980 Helling Way, Nevada City



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