Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: On Folly Beach

The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.
Jacques Yves Cousteau

My girls

The house where we stayed

Morning coffee

Folly Beach downtown

After the rain

View from our pier - evening

View from our pier - morning

We had a wonderful vacation in sunny South Carolina. Now, getting back into the groove of home sweet home, finding shells in the washing machine that were hidden in pockets.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

TSS: Vitamin Sea

Dear friend,

..been away for awhile soaking up the South Carolina sun. Good tides bring good words. Be back soon.

What I'm looking at now

Thursday, June 16, 2011

This Writer's Life

Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.  ~William Wordsworth

Do you know what it feels like when you've left your heart on the page? You've looked at whatever it is you've written (maybe just a poem or a thoughtful note to a friend) and pronounced it good. I'm at that point now with my novel. Now, I'm waiting to see what happens next. So how did I get to this point?

1. It's been 3 months since I joyfully became agented for my new YA novel and got to write The Post I've Been Wanting To Write For Years.

2. It's been 2 months since I received the anxiety producing agent-requested revisions document. I've read blogs about these letters. What I came away with from other author blogs is that this experience is heady, yet scary and challenging. We writers WANT to get that kind of letter because it's a step-stone on the road to publication. But it's sort of like trying to prepare yourself mentally for the whole "What will I do if I meet a rabid bear in the woods?" Turned out, it wasn't so fearful. It was like having a coach say "Go stronger here. Keep going here. Give me 10 more push-ups here." And it was only a page and a half of notes. I took a deep breath and went to work. I was thrilled with the finished product.

3. It's been 1 month since I submitted the revisions.

4. I am still receiving rejections from other agents I submitted to in January. This isn't fun, but it's not horrible either. You just look at the email and say to yourself, "Really?" and confidently, yet kindly, hit the delete button.

5. It's now two weeks since my wonder agent said she's ready to submit the book to publishers. It's out there now, on eagle's wings. I like to picture an editor sitting in her overstuffed chair, a cup of Earl Grey at her side, savoring the words I've labored over for a couple of years. In this writer's fantasy, said editor becomes so drawn to the character, she's almost late for dinner with her friends. Over cocktails, she tells one of them she just read a story that made her cry. And smile.

A girl can dream.....

Are you waiting to hear a response about your work? If so, how are you passing the days? 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Photo Wednesday: Memories

You might remember this post from several weeks ago. It was a photograph of a painting my mother did of me and my sister on the beach in the early 1970s.

Just this week, I discovered this photo in my mother's photo albums. It gave me a bittersweet feeling. Next week, I'll take my own two girls to the beach for the first time in their lives. I wish my mother was still living. I wish I could talk to her about that day on the beach, about her paintings and about her experiences as a mother.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Sunday Salon: Why call it a "book"

Happy Sunday to everyone. It's a very hot day here in Texas. After a big Sunday meal, we are all settled in for a nice long read, which will unfold into a nice long nap and then a dip in the pool. But first, this blog post.

Who knows why our mind gets set on certain questions and ideas, but this week I sought out the answer to a seemingly simple question: Why do we call books - books? It's possible one of my children tossed out this idea. In any case, I went in search of the answer. Here's what I found:

The origin of the Latin word for book, liber, comes from the Romans who used the thin layer found between the bark and the wood (the liber) before the times of parchment. The English word comes from the Danish word for book, bog, meaning birch tree, as the early people of Denmark wrote on birch bark.

So there you have it. Now you, too, can impress your friends at summer cocktail parties with your vast knowledge of all things books. Maybe I'll run into you there and as we sip a cool margarita or sangria, we can not only talk etymology, but what we're reading now. Hey, I'll go first. I'm reading Beach Music by Pat Conroy. You?