Friday, October 28, 2011

kind of a big deal

Yesterday I spent my morning at Cornerstone Press's Stevens Point Office (actually, their only office, but it sounded cool to write it that way). I cannot tell you what a thrill it was to meet 20 strangers enthusiastic about my work. The ideas they're bringing to the project, the various networks and resources, the energy is really validating. A few things occurred to me as I drove home:

1) How cool for college students to bite off and chew a big, meaningful project. When I was at college, the only outlet for English students was contributing or running the campus newspaper--as you know, a newspaper is temporary--the news is constantly replaced with new news, so there's not a permanent "feel" to newspaper work. Compared to the people at the College of Natural Resources, who were busy saving species from extinction, improving the local wildlife refuge, creating boardwalks, studying Asian carp; liberal arts majors didn't have many opportunities to do much aside from writing essays and reading books. Important projects. I never had that experience. It's neat to see students get to own and manage a Big Project of Substance, like publishing and marketing a book.

2) The student editors BLOW ME AWAY. Besides being super nice, they have read my work with such close attention to all kinds of details that I know I'd never have caught at their age. Their professional ability is impressive as hell.

3) The marketing ideas they're tossing around are so INSPIRED! Everything I heard made me more thankful for this opportunity.

4) Whipped, Not Beaten will be available before Christmas. Just in case you were like Jen on the Edge and buying gifts for all your favorite aunts and girlfriends ahead of time.

5) Listening to people talk about my writing, how they related to it, how it affected them, made me believe in my work a little bit more. What a confidence-builder.

In short: I learned a lot, it was a good use of my day.

In other news, I'd sent this image to a few of my friends because it's kind of what I suspect about myself:

You know how you think you're really graceful and athletic, but in real life you're a flat-footed putz just clodding around and all that dexterity is in your head? (Maybe that's just me.) I've long suspected my running and my karate is like that. Not too pretty.

So the other day one of the karate dads sent me some photos he'd taken during our Black Belt test. Suddenly I feel less afraid of what I really look like--by some miracle (not photoshop), you can see in the image below that I'm actually OFF THE GROUND and the guy behind me? He's one of the brothers testing for his 3rd degree and we look a little alike. Except I don't have sideburns. Heh.

That's me in front, with the taped foot.

Thus I conclude based on the photographic evidence presented that maybe Mr. O hasn't been kissing my butt all this time and maybe I am qualified to go on to a 3rd degree. Huh.

Happy Weekend, all. I'll be back Monday with the latest news about yeti sightings in the Back 40 and pictures of my Halloween Costume.


  1. What a great thing, for both the students and you. Definitely different from when I was in college. (I was very briefly an English major.) Way to go!

  2. Okay, so awesome on the book!!

    That picture is so cool - you look totally fit :-)

  3. That karate photo is 27 kinds of AWESOME!

    Have you thought of making the whole Yeti search into a kids book? "The Yeti In Our Back Yard".

  4. Very impressive! Both the karate picture and the book. I cannot wait to read it. Happy weekend!

  5. That picture rocks.

    As does your book.

    Hooray for you!

  6. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, YOU ARE AWESOME!!! So excited for you! I can't wait to read your book! :)
    I love that poster you sent to your friends. I completely feel that way about myself. HA! But how nice that you have evidence that you REALLY ARE that cool! :)

  7. I'm so excited for you, both about the book and the karate.

  8. Thought the second running picture was going to be Phoebe from Friends:)

    You DO rock and it's so great that the students see that.

  9. What a great picture to have of yourself! You look so strong!

  10. That is one of my favorite pics floating around the internet! I suspect that I looked like that while doing intervals on the elliptical today ;)

    Way to go on that picture of your kick---you're not just off the ground, you're flying!!! Super Star!

  11. You look like a bad ass! And congratulations again on your book being published.

  12. You are amazing!!! A book deal!!!! How exciting!!! Just look at all these exclamation marks!!!!!!

    That karate photo is kickass! You totally rock in multiple ways.

  13. That is a really great photo of you. Very impressive.

    And that girl in the yellow coat? That's me. Except when I am shoveling snow, I look like the last photo in this post.

  14. More yeti sitings? I can't wait!

    The review process must have been amazing - and nervewracking, too.

  15. What ya mean kind of a big deal it is a big deal and don't you forget it.............

    That karate photo is way awesome there are times when I wish I knew how to defend myself.......not that I ever had to but it would be nice to know how.....

  16. Oh my word, you look like such a bad ass in that photo. I just show it to Pete and he agrees that he'd hate to tangle with you in a dark alley.

    I'm so excited that "Whipped, Not Beaten" is coming out so soon! I already have a list of people who are getting it for Christmas.

    But you never told me what you decided to wear for your all-important meeting... Did you go in wearing your black belt uniform so that everyone would know that you're a bad ass author who should be taken VERY SERIOUSLY?

  17. So happy for you! All your hard work in every area of your life is paying off. You deserve all the recognition you're getting now.

  18. HOORAY! I love it. I can't WAIT to read it. I'm so happy for you!

    Also, you look so kick ass in that photo. I'm terrified. xo

  19. Wow, how inspiring---both the picture and the book news!!

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  21. Okay, that photo is "My Mom Rocks" quality.
    How cool to be part of that learning process for student publishing--- especially since you see and appreciate the value in it.

  22. Yay and yay (love that picture ;-).

    Happy Halloween!

  23. Awesome kick photo and I'm still laughing at the photo of the girl in the yellow coat running.. LOL

  24. You look great. I feel the same way until I see my shadow and then I think who is the hunched over old lady.

  25. I am SUPER-impressed. Both about the book and the jump-kick.

  26. I am so excited for you.
    I've been out of the loop, but please tell me more about your book.
    I want to buy for Christmas.


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