What’s it like when a Steelers fan lives in Ravens territory?
How do you find Italian biscotti in a grocery store repeating to the clerk three times what you’re looking for…then get only prefab biscotti?
Even with better weather, nautical scenery, crabs and oyster seasons, there are always things to miss from one’s hometown—the ‘burgh.
Loriann Hoff Oberlin finds herself using both careers these days. A Robinson Township native and graduate of Montour High and Westminster College, she moved to Montgomery County, MD in 2001.
While living and working in Pittsburgh she taught writing through many continuing education programs and wrote for regional and national publications.
Yet after completing a master’s degree at Johns Hopkins and establishing another career, she decided to return to the keyboard with a project she began 20 years ago living in Pittsburgh. Just published, it's called Letting Go: The Maryland Shores.
“I hadn’t created anything beyond a short article or progress notes for eight years,” she reports, with Overcoming Passive-Aggression co-written with Congressman and Dr. Tim Murphy her last book. “That had to change. Across the big bridge, one’s mind relaxes and so when we moved to the Eastern Shore, I set a goal.”
“Now with more life experience, an ear for dialogue, and a greater sense of relationships, I changed much, and created realistic characters in a particularly tense time in DC/MD history, navigating life’s difficulties in general…sometimes the Chesapeake...and had a lot of fun pulling Pittsburgh elements into the book!”
Already an accomplished writer of nine books, she used a pen name to separate her non-fiction and fiction efforts. “It’s not a high-security-clearance secret,” Oberlin says. “Lauren Monroe represents—Monroeville (outside of Pittsburgh) where I lived before moving; Lauren because I always liked the name.”
Letting Go: The Maryland Shores combines nautical and medical themes, life in and around the Beltway, coupled with a bit of romance and favorite Pittsburgh remembrances. “With the winter we’ve all had, it will have you thinking spring,” she reports.
The novel’s Facebook page educates and entices others to Maryland’s shores with a blog as well. The book is available for $4.99 on iBooks, Nook, Kindle and in paperback.