I love this photo because it was taken the summer after a horrible, horrible year.  It’s proof we can all smile again no matter how hard it seems at the time.

Heather Harlen is a writer and educator.  She is the author of the Marina Konyeshna thriller series (Northampton House Press).  Heather has been teaching for almost twenty years and has spent most of her career serving students  in an urban public school district as an English teacher.

She has an M.A. in creative writing from Wilkes University and a B.A in English and a secondary English teaching certification from Muhlenberg College. She is a National Writing Project Fellow and a member of the Penn State Lehigh Valley Writing Project.  .  She began her career in Moscow, Russia as a Peace Corps volunteer. She has taught 4th grade through graduate courses,  as well as professional in-services for fellow educators.  Her passions include writing workshop and project-based learning.  Heather lives with her husband and their cat in Eastern Pennsylvania, USA.

Find out about her writing at

Her blog’s name, Carry A Watermelon, comes from the part in Dirty Dancing where Baby tells Johnny she is at the party because “I carried a watermelon.” That watermelon is the threshold experience a la Joseph Campbell’s hero’s journey.  It took guts for Frances Houseman to carry that unwieldy fruit into that party and Heather hopes her life is full of watermelon opportunities. Or maybe that’s just reading too much into it and she really just wanted a Dirty Dancing reference as blog title.