Tuesday, June 23, 2009

greetings from park city, utah!

It was no small thing to have my manuscript critiqued yesterday by my Screw Iowa writing group--we spent hours on my 200 pages of Kicks Like a Girl and what a relief to learn that it's mostly good and just needs a little work! I'm trying something new with point of view (because I'm so sick of women's fiction told in the first person) and while I didn't totally pull it off in the first go, I now have outstanding advice and suggestions to make it viable. Predictably, I have to cut a few characters and tweak a couple of scenes--no biggie since they all agreed who to cut and how to tweak. Incredibly, I've learned that my second sentence in every chapter should be my first--something that results in the most brilliant and sly narrative voice this side of Jane Austen. (Did that sound kind of braggy? I thought so, too. But believe me, if this book ever sees the light of day I think you'll agree.) The true awesomeness, however, was to learn from my 4 dear readers that my book is funny--and I have the karate bit spot on with a good dollop of social commentary on love and marriage and sex and intimacy.

But enough about the writing stuff.

My journey here through sky and airport termnial gave me time to read a book and watch people. The whole time I sat in O'Hare I kept thinking, Is that Hotfessional over there? and That's an interesting gentleman ... WWBP (What Would Blackbird Post)?

And now I am here. With a glorious view of the mountains, my nostrils sucking in that fresh pine-tanged air. Nina has cooked up a storm. When you stay with an Italian whose passion for cooking and writing are on equal par with each other you can count on gaining 5 pounds a day. I'm beginning to fear she's fattening me up to sell me to a witch living up the trail in a cottage made of candy. Seriously, she's feeding me so much I'm turning down dessert.

We're having a grand old time, the five of us--Mariana and Lauren are experiencing Major Life Changes (no, I don't mean that in a menopausal way) that make us excited for them and proud of their courage. Marni is as perfectly swell as ever. Nina glows and fusses and regales us with food, hospitality and sharp insights on love, writing, books, life and cooking.

In short, I'm good. How are you?

26 comments:

  1. Lovely to hear you are enjoying yourself and you must be very excited about your book which sounds really interesting!

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  2. I'm good, too. Taking some time off from the blogging grindstone. It feels good to just be experiencing life for while.

    I'm glad to hear your review process is going so well. Sometimes it can be terrific to put your work before discerning readers, but it does take courage! Good for you!

    I hope you enjoy your time in Park City. I hear it's beautiful!

    :D - Julia

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  3. All is good on your estate. Your "nosy neighbor" is keeping an eye on things from her patio window. I'm hoping to get back there today to pick the berries. Enjoy your vacation...you're missing some sweltering weather here! :)

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  4. Oh honey! If I'd have known you were flying through O'Horror yesterday, I would have stuck around in the airport just to find you! ;-)

    I, for one, can't WAIT to read your book.

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  5. It's great to hear from you! I'm glad all is going well.

    You'll be pleased to know that I haven't run the eco blog into the dirt in your absence. No sponsorships from Hummer or McDonald's, I swear!

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  6. All is good here...The boy hit two homeruns this week so the mood is light and cheery. Off to the beach to maintain my summer glow

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  7. When your book hits the shelves I'll be in line to buy it!

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  8. YAY!

    That's so fabulous! I'm glad the critique went well, and that you and the girls are having fun as it is. Girl time is super important! (Especially for someone who lives with Team Testosterone!)

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  9. Wow...I'm jealous of your girl time...in the pretty setting of Utah. That's great to hear that you got some constructive feedback on your book!

    There is a nursery out here that I drive by just about every day, and it's called the 'Green Goddess' - and I know you're the 'Green Girl' - but I always think of you when I see the sign. :)

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  10. It's such a satisfying, productive, GOOD feeling to work with other great people on a happy project. Sounds like you are having a wonderful time!

    But, um... turning down dessert?? I've never heard of such a thing!

    I'm having a good week, thanks for asking - very busy between work and VBS but it's all stuff that makes me smile.

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  11. Sounds exciting. And may I say that I really don't like to read novels in first person at all. Often I flip open a book I'm considering and if it's in fp, I put it back.

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  12. Yeah! Glad to hear the trip is going well for you.

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  13. It all - book, friends, food - sounds wonderful!

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  14. One rarely goes wrong discarding the first sentence - or paragraph, even. It's only warm-up.

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  15. Yeah!! So glad you're having fun and excited about your book! Can't wait to hear more about the 2nd sentence instead of the 1st - very intruiging!!

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  16. Oh, no, don't stop writing about your writing--I swear, you made it fascinating! I'm trying now to imagine chick lit written from non-first-person POV and still being compelling. Interesting.

    Hey, and chica? I have no idea where I've been as a reader (er, not being a good reader of anyone), but HI.

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  17. Sounds like you are having a wonderful time!

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  18. Feeling wistful just hearing about the Italian food, let alone the rest!

    On the book front....can we get a preview?

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  19. Congrats on the great feedback for your book.
    Interesting about the first sentences - I just read the same advice for last lines, too...it's easy to go one sentence too many.

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  20. This sounds so amazing and brave. I can't wait to read it.

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  21. Mmmm. Sounds lovely to spend days honing your craft with good friends and the yummiest sorts of munchings and crunchings.

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  22. Everything sounds amazing! The book, the food, the everything! Keep it up!

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  23. I can't wait until your book is published so I can read it!

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  24. I loved all the stuff you wrote about Utah, the Screw Iowa gals, and me! a picture of a bidet? Now that's something!

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  25. That's so great that you are part of this group. I never realized just how hard writing is until I started working on "The Geriatric Prom Queens". On one hand, it's easy because I love my characters so much but making the time to write and staying focused is hard. I'm only about 80 pages in but I keep plugging away at it. You rock!

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  26. I'll be the first one in line to buy your book so I can read brilliant and sly narrative voice. Cannot wait!

    Go, you!

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Spill it, reader.