A vacation story of lessons learned

Princeville, HI, 2021

Before March 2020, anticipating travel elicited an excitement that could have been bottled up and sold. I’m a planner. I married a planner. My wife Judy and I would sit at the kitchen table with a map, guidebooks, phones, and laptop to discuss at length all we wanted to see…

An experiment in self-awareness, self-restraint, and self-improvement in an attempt to rewire my pandemic brain

Photo by Peter Berko on Unsplash

Introduction

Almost a decade ago, I sat relaxed on the back deck of a Baltimore rowhouse with two best friends discussing the future. We were under the influence, listening to Steely Dan, and imagining what’s next — careers, marriages, and big moves ahead.

The conversation cracked some shell, shedding light on…

Underrated Stories Presents

Raise a pint to a new year, new friends, and an unexpected glimpse into the Emerald Isle’s hospitality

Photo by Aldo De La Paz on Unsplash

From the author: I began writing this story before COVID hit the United States and before international travel ceased to exist. I finished it now six months into the crisis as I reflect upon all the times I’m glad that I didn’t hold back, say ‘No’, or ‘Next time, maybe.

A trip to New Hampshire’s Mount Isolation inspires the confidence to face a difficult decision

Brendan Marshall, 2020 — Mt. Isolation, NH

She’d circled this summer weekend on her calendar with bright, red ink way back in April. Though, now, with abundant uncertainty surrounding the ability to travel, rent vacation homes, and visit restaurants and wineries, a cancellation was imminent. …

Dissecting process and a continuous love affair with the craft

Brendan Marshall, On Writing, 2020

Introduction

Where do you write? Is there a favorite space of refuge in your crowded mind? A breakfast nook where the sun shines at the perfect forty five-degree angle in the morning? An office, three-season porch, or dining room table where your muses meet daily to collaborate and create?

Are you…

Photo credit: Brendan Marshall, 2020

A letter of gratitude to a bike, a community, and an oasis in the desert of quarantine 2020

Dear Peloton,

To all riders, instructors, and the greater community: working out is hard.

Maintaining sound physical health is a habit built over time — a daily commitment to a lifestyle founded upon personal resolve.

The love affair with a sweat-soaked t-shirt earned from a long test of endurance is a grind…

Brendan Marshall

Author of The Underrated Writing Project — a collection of short stories, creative non-fiction, and poetry about this life. Seeking the perfect cup of coffee.

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