Tuesday, February 10, 2009

interview with a woman reading a book about vampires

It's true. I'm halfway done with The Historian, clutching my throat while I read...

Jo over at Ecology of a Woman
has interviewed me--dang, she's good! I can't promise such revealing questions, but if you want to be next, leave a comment.
Here are the Interview Rules:
1. Leave me a comment saying "interview me."
2. I will respond by emailing you 5 questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them 5 questions.

Without further ado:

How do you find the time, motivation, and inspiration to write?

I buy the time--a day care takes Mr. G while Mr. T and Mr. B are at school for a few days a week. It's desperate--I type as fast as I can in a silent house and my writing time is the first to fly out the window when errands or housekeeping calls. I've also been known to stay up VERY late at night when everyone else is down for the count. I'm motivated by how fun it is to invent new people who lead lives that fascinate me--I write about the lives I'd like to lead so the process is escapism. And creating renews my brain and attitude in a way that crafting might for other types of people. Writing blogs can be done with kids in the house--all 3 boys play together well and I can write short pieces in the midst of their noise and chaos. As far as inspiration goes, I'm always finding people, situations, places and qualities that need to go in a novel or short story--good material is all over. The only problem is finding the time to produce all the crazy thoughts in my head.

In honor of the upcoming holiday dedicated to love--I am sure we would all love to hear the story of you and Mr. D!

The long story was posted over our anniversary last August. If you're dying to read the entire bit, click here, here, here, here and here. And here. Which is more than you probably ever want to know. The short version is this: I met him while tending bar to pay for college. My first teaching job was about 40 minutes from where he lived and we started to date when I moved to the west side of the state. My second teaching job moved me across the state, Mr. D followed with a proposal and sweet promises of never letting me down and giving me a good life. Naturally, I fell hook line and sinker and this year we'll have been legally wed for 14 years. We've seen fire and rain, ice, sleet, snow, some flooding and a few tornadoes. But most days with him are balmy, with sunshine and a breeze.

Sixty acres of land is a LOT! I am a little envious! What do you do with all that land? Tell me about your gardens!

It is a LOT. We've got 40 acres enrolled in federal, state and county programs--some of it is managed forest, some is freshly planted prairie recovery and forest recovery. Because Duck Creek runs through our land, we qualified for a program that pays for our efforts to create a healthy buffer along the waterway. Up by our house we've planted hundreds of trees and a prairie. We've got trails for walking and x-c skiing and riding our ATV. The gardens are by the house--I have huge beds of perennials and am redoing the vegetable garden because it got ripped apart last spring, so prepare to hear more about that in a couple months. My old vegetable bed is now all strawberries since they took over. I have a raspberry patch and pear and apple trees. We also have a pumpkin/squash patch up behind our neighbor's property--that's a communal effort by both of us. I cut flowers for my table all season and try to be generous with the produce when it comes--I also freeze a lot of fruits and vegetables.

We all know that you are an eco-warrior! Tell me about how you came to realize how strong a passion this was for you. Was it a single event of an ongoing theme? What was the catalyst?

I've always loved to be outside my whole life--and as a Christian, I'm constantly amazed by the diversity and specificity I discover in nature. My environmentalism is really a combination of celebrating God's gifts to us and protecting the spaces I enjoy playing in. Among my favorite books are John Steinbeck's Grapes of Wrath and he really nails how consumerism and "progress" destroy both the earth and people. I can't recall a single moment where I became sort of granola-y, it's been more of an evolution as I've learned more about the world and made the connections between politics, economics and ecology. I'm lucky to have married someone who feels as passionately about wide open spaces as me and we're both committed to preserving our little corner of the world for posterity (and bugs, bees, birds, & animals!).

You are quite a reader! What book has meant the most to you and why?

It's tough to pick one--any reader says that. Obviously the Bible is my moral compass and my spiritual foundation--as I reread it (2 chapters a night, no skipping around) I'm always surprised at what I learn and discover new questions along the way. Other books that I reread on occasion because they mean so much include Little Women because the Alcotts were my fantasy family, Frankenstein is visionary and genius the way it addresses science and ethics, Grapes of Wrath is laser-sharp and teaches one about poverty and "progress." A Room of One's Own encouraged my feminist beliefs. Walden is extraordinary and while I fear Henry David Thoreau was a bit creepy in real life, I love his brain. Mere Christianity deepened my faith.


  1. I loved this... her questions and your answers!

  2. Oh how fun. I loved the interview.

  3. How cool. I'm game - interview me!

  4. 1. I can't imagine having that much garden space let alone land.
    2. I just lent my copy of "The Historian" to a freind for her vacation - I LOVED it, could not put it down!
    3. Sure, ask away.

  5. The Historian! It has one of those endings.... ahem. Great interview. Have you read "The Screwtape Letters"?

  6. I read Little Women so many times I knew parts of it from memory! I wanted to be Jo when I grew up. Wait...I am grown up.

  7. Great interview! And I'm glad to know someone else who has read The Historian. I loved that book - must put it on my "read again" list for soon.

  8. Oh, fun. Reading your Q&A leaves me wanting to play along.

  9. Great interview. You make gardening sound wonderful.

  10. I enjoyed this so much, so I'm game. I need something to write about since I having a bit of a block. :)

  11. this may be a dumb question, but where can we read your fiction, Green Girl?

  12. If you'd still want to do another interview, I'd be happy to be interviewed


Spill it, reader.