Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Maternal Is Political

Today I received my contributor copies of the anthology The Maternal Is Political: Women Writers at the Intersection of Motherhood and Social Change. What a great looking book! And I am thrilled to have my essay appearing alongside the work of Barbara Kingsolver, Anne Lamott, Anna Quindlen, Nancy Pelosi, and Benazir Bhutto. Way cool. A huge thank you to editor Shari MacDonald Strong for putting together such an amazing anthology--and to my friend Linera Lucas for encouraging me to submit!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Feeling the Book Club Love

Andy and I recently had our first book club experience and it was amazing!

The wonderful thing about book clubs is that they are most often held in private homes, with a small group of attentive readers, there's food and drink, and no need to "perform" as with a public reading. The meeting is held primarily to discuss the book with readers who have already read it, who are discriminating and intelligent and have interesting questions. We even sold nine additional books to members who already had their own copies and wanted to share the book with others.

It was so amazing to see this articulate group of interested readers sitting there with their books all marked and tabbed and highlighted. I think they remembered more about the book than I did. And several members had marked specific passages where a quote or a lesson or even just a simple observation had come to them at the perfect time to help them through some difficulty in their lives. What could be better? This is why I write. This makes all those long hours at the keyboard worthwhile.

I feel so grateful to readers, strangers who voluntarily give me approximately 8 hours of their lives, attending to words on the page--words that I've written. Then they take the words into their minds and hearts and make the book into an experience that speaks to them alone. They finish my book. Did I mention that it's amazing?

Friday, May 02, 2008

Looking for a good story to read?

Check out the new website Five Star Stories that features new stories available on the web that have been nominated by the editor that published them (as the best of the issue) and are then critiqued by an established author. What a great idea! (I thought it was such a good idea, I volunteered to go first.)