Writing, Creativity, and Meditation: I’m in a Yogi State of Mind

When I was in my 20’s, a friend—I’ll call him Anthony—gave me a book called Be Here Now, by the Western-born spiritual teacher, Ram Dass. I was eager to dive into it because Anthony was totally gaga over the “amazing” concepts contained therein . . . um, none of which I’d been able to put a finger on, because I hadn’t been able to pin Anthony down to my satisfaction. 

So the book would be my way into Anthony’s head was what I thought, because the title meant nothing—it held no mystery or cachet for me (although Anthony did)—because where else could or would I be except where I was?

So in I went, leafing through the book before actually reading, what I always do with new books—and my heart sank looking at a drawing I didn’t get, which mirrored a man I didn’t get (Anthony, who, in the end, I shouldn’t have gotten).

But now here I am, many, many years later, with my own book out—a novel entitled The Angry Woman Suite—and I get “be here now.” I get it big-time, because “be here now” got me from “back then,” when I was a mess, to, well . . . here and now, where I like who I am.   

Yet, why, someone recently asked, has it just come up again? Why are you talking about it so much now?

First, it didn’t just. But I haven’t written about “be here now” much until now, because, for me, it feels a little like talking or writing about breathing—which could make me sound a little too much like Anthony lecturing on the right way to breathe. 

But the truth is, “be here now” never actually went away, because big truths never do. 

After Anthony, life eventually took me from being a scatterbrained, impulsive, unhappy, immature and romantic compulsive idealist (and those were my good traits) with a big ol’ stirring spoon in a drama cauldron the size of New Jersey to a relatively centered—and, according to others and I’m not going to quibble—calm, and mostly content (the three C’s) woman who learned to “be still.” To listen to the quiet (yes, that does mean turning off the cell, the music, the car radio, and the TV).  

And that, as it turned out, became my path: quiet. Not Anthony.  

But I didn’t even know I loved quiet so much until I forced myself to finish my first book after Anthony broke my heart (and I say forced, because as any novelist will tell you, it is extremely easy to turn away from finishing a book). But, come to find out, writing is a lot like meditation.

In fact, writing is meditation.

Just as it takes practice and focus and quiet to meditate, it takes focus and quiet to write. But here’s the B-I-G clincher:

Creating something from nothing, becoming fully absorbed in its creation, even separating from time and place during, causes us to secrete dopamine, a lovely fulfilling hormone that stills the “hysterical” hormones, cortisol and adrenaline.

According to Martha Beck, author of Finding Your Way in a Wild New World (Free Press), “. . . research indicates that we’re most creative when we’re happy and relaxed, and, conversely, that we can steer our brains into this state by undertaking a creative task.”

“Steer our brains”? Oh, boy. Who knew? Why isn’t this stuff being packaged and marketed?

And who needs a drama cauldron that invariably leaves its stirrer exhausted, unfulfilled, and unhappy, when real joyfulness is creativity—“be here now”—or, put another way, “mindfulness”—and why couldn’t Anthony just have said that?

Mindfulness is engrossing, beautiful, and ever-changing—and it’s habit-forming, so that after a while we even notice that the desire for creating becomes stronger (and the books and blog posts get finished).  

And another plus is that with practice, quiet, and continual creating, we become able to tune into the “here and now” even when not actively creating.     

On the other side (the dark side *smile*), my just-released novel, The Angry Woman Suite, a Kirkus Critics’ Pick, with enough drama in it to fill ten cauldrons, is available from Amazon.com in quality softcover, or from the Kindle store, and also via the Barnes and Noble website.   

The Angry Woman Suite, about a celebrity double murder in Pennsylvania, in the early 1900s, and the effects on three generations of two families, has also been nominated for a Global Ebook Award.  

Thanks for stopping by, and here’s to peace and quiet in a compulsive, noisy world. How do you “be here now”?

        

Advertisements

Rejection: The Final Frontier

The two best pieces of advice I ever got about writing were: One, you have to know all the rules before you can break them, otherwise it shows; and, two, should you decide to take your writing on the road, you must believe that rejection is not about you as a person, otherwise you won’t last two minutes. 

The first piece of advice, about rules, is actually easy. If you care about words and stories—or building things, or sports, cooking, photography, gardening, whatever—you probably want to be really proficient at this thing you love. If you’re a writer, it’s natural to want prose that shows a command of punctuation, grammar, syntax, and rhythm—because anything less than complete proficiency here takes away from the main event: the story.

But the second piece of advice I got, about rejection—now this one just sucks eggs. Not the advice—it’s right on. It’s the subject matter. Ick. Every writer I know has agonized over rejection. Agonized. I once knew a writer whose query had been rejected eight times, and he absolutely couldn’t figure out what was wrong with them (you do know who them is, right?).       

But eight rejections is nothing. Eight rejections is just getting started. So’s fifty rejections, and a hundred.   

And unlike actors who go to audition after audition, their “out there” personalities under a spotlight, a requirement of their business, it’s not the same for writers.

Writers aren’t known for spotlights. The act of writing, of creating something from nothing, is a solitary cerebral endeavor, not an “out there” one. And so of course many, many writers’ basic natures are largely introverted—not to say we don’t like people, because that’s not the point or even necessarily true. The point is we require time alone, and often feel drained by the presence of others (it’s not personal; it’s who we are, and we often mesh best with other introverts or “introvert-hybrids” who get this). We’re also self-starters; otherwise, we couldn’t write.  

We’re also probably much, much worse at rejection than other artists, whose job descriptions put them front and center from the get-go.

So, yes, rejection can feel covers-over-the-head, chest-pounding devastating. Every submitting writer has been there. I’ve been there, and there’s just no other way of putting it: it sucks dozens of eggs and the hens that laid them. Literary agent Rachelle Gardner recently wrote a post entitled “Do You Have a Thick Skin?” and said, “I’m here to tell you: some of you will never develop a thick skin. But the important thing is: You’ll survive.”

Of course, if you want to excel, if you want to trump yourself, survival in and of itself won’t be enough for you. (my words).

Neither will the metaphorical suit of armor.

It will take all your bravery (dig down deep)—especially for solitary writers not heretofore necessarily known for their great balls of steel, though that doesn’t mean they don’t have them; they just don’t flaunt them—to get out of your own way and consider if the criticism or feedback you’ve received has merit. If it does, be braver still and get out of bed and go back to work. Just do it. If the criticism doesn’t have merit—and criticism is always subjective—still get out of bed and go back to work.

And, yes, it is hard to move forward when you’re not feeling the love. Is it ever. But if you’ve already completed a project, or have made inroads on one, you are already so waaaay ballsy, my friend, sticking to something so hard and making it look easy, meaning you can survive rejection and live to laugh about it, too (though it doesn’t have to be today).             

More about survival: The Angry Woman Suite, a novel about a celebrity double murder in the early 1900s, and its effect on three generations of two Pennsylvania families, is just out in print (in addition to e-book format) and is now available via Amazon and Barnes and Noble websites.     

Check out amazon.com/author/leefullbright—and thanks for stopping here. Comments are always welcome!

How do you handle criticism?

 

 

 

An Improbable Life: Baby Rae, My Writing Partner

I arguably have one of the world’s most neurotic dogs. Her name is Baby Rae Fullbright—Baby for short. (Baby is for “Nobody puts Baby in a corner,” and Rae is after my sister, Colleen Rae, who was with me the day I took Baby.)

Smuggled out of Tecate, Mexico as a puppy—a very sick, abused one—hers is an improbable life. That she survived puppyhood was the biggest improbability. But she didn’t survive unscathed. She has—how do I put this? Well, she has issues. Like a draining bathtub can send her into paroxysms of drooling and shaking. And she hates dogs. Considering she is one, how messed-up is that?

She fears men, eyeglasses, hats, bicycles, scooters, towels, riding in cars, looking at cars, screen doors, wind, leaves, and lizards (the teensy ones!)—and that’s nowhere near a complete list. That’s a “just getting started” list.   

She is the unlikeliest cattle dog (normally brave and energetic—but also loyal and incredibly smart). She is lazy (except she loves to “dance”). And she’s the total house dog (she doesn’t do rain or cold—and cold is anything less than 68 degrees). She sleeps on a down pillow. Wherever I am, she is. Unless I’m working at the office. But at home she never lets me out of her sight. Never. When I get ready for the office in the morning, those big brown eyes of hers are almost comically mournful watching me, as if I’m never coming back. It’s pitiful, actually. You’d think after eleven years she’d get it: I am coming home. I’ll always come home to you.     

But her world has rocked a little more than usual the past two weeks. I’d some Kindle pages to read (many pages, actually; for reference, the print version of my novel is 370-odd pages), and formatting to modify as necessary and turn back around in a week or so. This is a different kind of work than creative writing, where I take lots of little breaks and read aloud to Baby, for the rhythm of words and phrasing (and, yes, she always approves); where she and I are “partners.” But galley-type work is intense, extremely focused, as in no interruptions, please.

Well, I finished (in fact, I just finished!), but I know Baby’s missed our regular “talks,” and those silly “dances” we do while I cook dinner (no time for cooking!), or the workouts after (that’s my sad, pensive Baby above . . . ouch).

And, yes, I’ve missed her, too. She’s a special old girl in spite of her issues. Or maybe because of them. She’s my friend—my best friend. She gets me. I get her. She even understands English. The only thing she doesn’t understand is that she’s not ever going to be abandoned again, or hurt; otherwise, this dog is so smart you can have a conversation with her. And she doesn’t chew furniture, or pee on the rugs.

She just waits for me—and now I’m back. And we’re getting ready to dance.

New Release Critics’ Pick: The Angry Woman Suite

Hi all, First off, a big SORRY to my poor dear friends reading this and already so over hearing the following, BUT—    

Just. One. More. Time. (promise) . . . so here goes:

My soon-to-be available novel, The Angry Woman Suite, about a Pennsylvania murder and its effects on two subsequent generations, was named a “New Release Critics’ Pick” by Kirkus Reviews last week (google Kirkus online newsletter of 1/4/12).

I did have champagne for dinner that night . . . and that’s all, just champagne.  

Second, while I’m so obviously aboard the “all about me” train tonight, I’d like to talk more about The Angry Woman Suite, starting with the lovely cover design by artist Laurie Fuller, which several people have asked about, as in who is this beautiful woman?

Still others have asked if The Angry Woman Suite is biographical or partly autobiographical (no, it’s not; it’s fiction, although it incorporates many historical elements); and others have asked about the title, if it means what it sounds like; i.e., a bunch of pissed women off their meds.    

The novel’s title refers to a famous suite of (ten) portraits that figure predominantly in the novel’s plot. This collection of paintings is called The Angry Woman Suite.  

The woman on The Angry Woman Suite cover is Magdalene Grayson, the model for this suite of portraits.    

The novel—mystery and love story and coming-of-age (three intersecting stories)—is told by three narrators in different time zones (between the early 1900s and 1968), in Pennsylvania.

Magdalene Grayson is not a narrator, but she is pivotal to the lives of all three narrators.

She is the love interest of one narrator, Aidan, and the mother of a second (more about him later). The third (and lead) narrator is her step-granddaughter, Elyse, who is the glue of the novel (and we know everything about Elyse, every thought in her head, from page one, on). But Magdalene remains a bit elusive, which is why I chose not to make her a narrator: I wanted her elusive. She is a beautiful cipher wrapped up in a riddle—and I think the book’s cover art captures her mystery.

So moving forward with what I love best about writing fiction, creating characters, two excerpts from The Angry Woman Suite follow. Both concern Magdalene Grayson from Aidan’s point of view. But the second excerpt, which shows Aidan’s new, wavering perception of Magdalene, reveals as much about Aidan as it does Magdalene.     

We meet Magdalene briefly when she is in her early thirties—but then, moving back in time, we get another, different picture of her through Aidan’s eyes, when she is sixteen—and it is not love between them. It is not even like.

What it is, is disdain on both sides.   

Because Magdalene is one of those people born observant and curious, and so she questions everything. She will listen, but all the while she’s likely to be thinking, “I wonder when the bullshit ends and your real story begins?” The much older Aidan finds this threatening to his walled-off existence.

This is what Aidan says about Magdalene when she is sixteen, in 1916:

“And from the back of Magdalene, I could tell nothing. I saw only a fall of long blond hair, the way she straightened her broad shoulders, and the dirt on her skirt where she’d been sitting . . . when she turned back around, her pale eyes were anguished. Other than that, she looked fine, same as always: large and awkward for a sixteen-year-old. What I didn’t see was that Magdalene Grayson’s bigness was smooth and symmetrical, even classical. I didn’t see it because, primarily, Magdalene did not impress me, never had. And I had my reasons (and it’s a long list). Let me condense it for you: Magdalene was difficult. She was damn difficult. Even as a first-grader she’d been difficult, restless and moody, regularly declining participation in the schoolyard, not wanting to be in my band, looking at me with disdain, as if she knew more than I.”

But a year later, on the eve of America’s entry into WWI, at Magdalene’s wedding reception—and Aidan has not seen Magdalene during this year—this is what he has to say about the woman destined for imminent widowhood, who will subsequently and unintentionally start a war on their own rural home front while having to choose between two men, and shield her disfigured sister from murder charges. . . .

Again, this is a year later, at Magdalene’s wedding reception through Aidan’s eyes:

“. . . But then, when they were almost on us, Magdalene turned her head. Our eyes locked, as did the breath in my chest.

            “I’ll close my mouth,” Jamie whispered in my ear, “if you close yours.”

            Her beauty was more spectacular than even Lothian’s. Whereas Lothian’s face was soft and oval-shaped, Magdalene’s had become chiseled angularity, fine and even—yet she wasn’t just beautiful. She had mystique, something rarely seen; it was something in her eyes. Tendrils of pale hair escaped the white snood she wore, making a halo around her damp forehead and flushed cheeks, and I sensed rather than heard Matthew’s own soft exclamation when she laughingly brushed Frederick’s cheek with her lips, lips that were wide and red and ripe, parted slightly, teasing, yet weirdly circumspect . . . 

            She was real, the dream existed, and of course she was not a good woman, this lovely dream of mine. How could she be? She’d been a challenging child to put it mildly, so she couldn’t be long-suffering like my mother, or generous like Sahar. No, Magdalene Grayson was interesting. She was inquisitive, fractious, self-absorbed and judgmental. And to top it off she was totally out of reach, and the absolute worst thing in the world for me.

            Of course I wanted her.

            Exhilarated, I looked closer and saw those pale eyes weren’t actually unkind; how could I have ever thought that? It was question I now saw in those eyes, and suddenly I also saw the rub . . .”

 Okay, so what’s the rub? Well, The Angry Woman Suite will be available at the end of February, so stay tuned.

 Not nice, huh? *smile*

However, what the rub is not, in this story, is truth. And the truth is that sometimes when we fall in like/love/lust—as Aidan’s apparently beginning to do—we are compelled to square that decision with a previous assessment. I mean, who’s going to say to him or herself, “I’m attracted to so-and-so because no one sets buildings on fire the way s/he does?”   

No sane person. So the first assessment has to be modified. Also, this last bit of narrative suggests our walled-off Aidan possesses at least a modicum of vulnerability.     

Thanks for coming by, and more on The Angry Woman Suite characters later—and, oh, my “metaphor,” the wooden ship! More on it, too. I’ll walk down to the bay and get new photos (see my post of 1/4/12), and be back with you in a week or so.  

It’s Fiction, Not Memoir

New business: This photograph is under consideration for the cover of The Angry Woman Suite. Like it/don’t like it? Don’t be shy . . . first thing off the top of your head—good? bad? Do you feel the “wistfulness”? Feedback appreciated!   

Penquin’s online community Book Country has launched a plethora of tools for authors to digitally publish, with distribution to all major outlets that Penquin distributes to. . . .

Barnes & Noble’s Nook Tablet is making its appearance sooner than initially announced (sharing the love with Amazon’s new Fire).

Old business: Some time back, a non-writer friend, an avid reader, was looking over a very rough first draft of The Angry Woman Suite for me, a story with a double murder at its core (emphasis here for a reason), told by three narrators in different time zones.

One of these narrators is Elyse Grayson, a young girl at the start of The Angry Woman Suite, and eighteen at its conclusion. The other two narrators are males. Now, as I’ve written before, Elyse Grayson had me from the beginning of the story. She is the glue of this book, and the character I relate to. I didn’t want to leave her when the novel ended.    

Is that because Elyse is female and has understandable issues? (rhetorical question)    

Francis Grayson, on the other hand, her stepfather, was the most difficult character to move forward from a first-person point of view. First off, it was über difficult being male when I’m not, and, second, having to stay in Francis’ head for any length of time made me a little nutty—is that because he’s male (redundant) and has issues?

So this friend (the one who’d read the first draft of The Angry Woman Suite) and I were at lunch one day, menus still in hand, when she leaned over and asked almost conspiratorially, “Lee, did all those things really happen to you when you were a child?”

I was speechless—seriously speechless. “But this isn’t a memoir—”

“But what about Francis? Isn’t he—?”   

Since then, as The Angry Woman Suite has grown, and been read by more people and critiqued and commented on, I’ve heard again and again, “How much of this story is you; is any part of it true?”

Okay, so here’s the deal: other than writing these blog posts, I write fiction. Stories. I make things up. 

There is no double murder in my background.

Are you kidding? If there were, I would write a memoir—and a sequel.

As for creating characters with foibles and neuroses, well, ever since I can remember, I have watched and listened to people and wondered, “Really, is what you just said truth or bullshit? And if it’s bullshit—and you are looking like you’re believing your own shit —then which hat did you just pull that one out of?

And this, seriously, is the genesis of my storytelling. I make up stories to explain the otherwise (to me) unexplainable.

So, yes, there are people in my stories who are reminiscent of many real-life people I’ve either appreciated or puzzled over. We all work with the tools we have, what we can lay our hands on, what is familiar; what we know. And, like everyone else, I’ve had good and bad influences in my life—those influences are my tools.  

But, again, excepting the historical references to the American Revolution, The Angry Woman Suite is fiction.

And fiction is an art form I’ve loved from the very first Louisa Mae Alcott “big girl” novel (Rose in Bloom) my mother gave me when I was eight, to the novel we talked of as she lay dying (The Last of the Mohicans).        

Thanks for coming by—oh, and one other thing, and yes, it is about me *smile*: I met my Telemachus editor today. Her name is Karen, and she’s brilliant. She turned 40 pages back around to me thisfast—so there’s much to do (but it’s fun). Except I haven’t quite figured out the sleeping thing, as in where it fits in. I’ll be back on Monday—comments appreciated!

Writing Sexy Scenes and Cutting Corners

I once heard John Grisham say in an interview that he runs away from writing sex-explicit scenes because the first one he wrote made his wife laugh.  

Which made me laugh.

Because I can relate.

I haven’t written much about my husband DDF, because his struggle is so heart-rending that even for a writer who naturally loves words, I’ve run away from the sad, powerful ones needed to adequately convey DDF’s journey from brilliant, athletic, curious and at the top of his game to, now, a fetal position most of the day, and unable to read or write, or speak coherently—a once beautiful man largely “trapped” by a progressive neurological disease.

But there’s a reason I’m writing about DDF now (instead of more about indie publishing and mystery men as promised, but we’ll get back to those later).

The reason is last night.

I do all my reading in bed, so last night’s pick was an indie novel someone told me I should take a look at. It has generated mixed buzz, but I started it with high hopes, because I love that every writer now has the opportunity to get his or her best stuff out there via the indie revolution; to share a dream with the world—and that we, the world, now get to experience all visions—nothing is closed off to writers or readers any longer.  

But I was so disappointed—and I wanted to take this author, who is such a capable writer by the way, by the shoulders, and tell her, “Please, please, please, no cutting corners. Use an editor or proofer next time out, because you lost me with this one—and you didn’t have to.”

The first lead she used incorrectly (instead of led), I chalked up to a typo—and I can live with typos. But the next dozen leads she used incorrectly all led to what the author must’ve considered a requisite sex scene, which for the life of me, I couldn’t see the point of, so mired was I in the misuse of a dozen freakin’ leads.

And that’s when I missed my old DDF—again. I wanted him back—I wanted to be able to elbow him and say, “Wait—listen to this passage,” or “Oh dear, what do you think of this?

It’s a funny thing about marriage.

Or any long-term relationship. The things you think about when it’s ending; things you already miss. Little things: a certain look, a half-smile, a cocked eyebrow. Intimate, intrinsic, positive “us” things—magic things that no one else in the world sees or hears.

Because it’s a shared “language” understood only by two.   

DDF and I’d have giggled in the old days, but not in a mean way, not at this author’s misuse of lead (which, unfortunately, undermine her credibility, and just ten pages into her baby)—but at me.

No cutting corners. . . .

To backtrack, DDF and I have known each other for forever; perfect at times and other times not, but even when we have been imperfect, we have loved each other. No cutting corners. We met unexpectedly through a friend, and discovered we shared a love for books. DDF introduced me to Gunter Grass and Vonnegut, and I introduced him to Michener and Wouk. We read Irving Wallace’s The Seven Minutes at the same time—different copies of course—and hardly came up for air during, and then talked non-stop over wine and dinner after. We had a “glue”: it was books. Not only novels. We read everything: art, history, biography, philosophy. When we weren’t working or biking or skiing, we were reading or browsing in book stores.

We’d read passages from books to each other, and I’d share ideas for my own writing, and he would chide me for not using an editor, because I thought I knew it all (ouch). Or I’d throw a sex scene in (which he’d laugh at), because, hey, doesn’t everybody do it? Isn’t it expected, even required? Doesn’t sex sell books, movies, music?

Sometimes, but it doesn’t feel manipulative when . . . 

. . . it moves a story forward, or offers a better understanding of a character or characters, or if the plot itself hinges on it.    

And that’s what DDF intuitively knew—and probably why John Grisham’s wife laughed too. If a writer’s uncomfortable with a subject, it’ll show—and if s/he’s throwing sex in “just because,” it will show. Gratuitous always shows.

And, second point: everybody needs to hire an editor before putting their stuff “out there”—even if you’re an English teacher, because: 

People, we cannot see our own screw-ups.

If you love your story, make it shine. If you don’t love it, holler for the cavalry. And I’m not talking just books here. Our bigger stories are our relationships–and we need to give those everything, because we can’t unring the bell. So, no cutting corners, and no assuming we know it all (even if we actually do). 

One other thing about DDF:

I haven’t read the big love-sex scene from my novel, The Angry Woman Suite, aloud to him, because today’s DDF would have to struggle to comprehend a scene and I don’t want to add to his frustration.

Yet, I think my old DDF would say it’s a pretty good scene. In fact, I see the old DDF with my mind’s eye (I see him a lot this way): the cocked eyebrow, the bemused half-smile, the pride in me. And I still hear this man who now has such difficulty speaking, because after so many years with someone, you can hear the unspoken, that contextual backwash of a long shared history. And this is what I hear him saying: 

“Well, kid, you finally nailed the damn scene. Took you long enough, but it’s honest and it was needed–and you’re not rubbing my nose in it. Good—no cutting corners.”

The man knew how to say stuff: brief, to the point.

“No cutting corners.”

I post on Thursdays and Mondays, and sometimes more, but sometimes less.

 Hello gorgeous

 

 

The Angry Woman Suite Comes In From The Cold

Happy Halloween! And thanks so much to all of you who sent encouraging emails and/or left comments at my Oct. 27th post.  

For those checking in with me for the first time, my back story is that I’ve written a historical-commercial novel called The Angry Woman Suite (about a double murder in the early 1900’s, in Pennsylvania, and subsequent fallout on two generations). The novel, both mystery and love story, garnered very good reviews, and a literary agent.

But back stories, like life, never have straight trajectories, and this one is no exception. In my case, my agent left the publishing business (I’d nothing to do with it, I swear! I’m not that powerful!) . . .

. . . though e-readers are. . . .  

And so my new paradigm became a sudden and succinct bottom line of no agent = no contract. The Angry Woman Suite went from promising, front and center, to Nowhere Land, out in the cold—and took me with it.

What to do next? Well, after some impressive dithering and waffling on my part, I met two men whom I’ve introduced via previous posts: potty-mouthed Josh, who looks a little like Ashton Kutcher on a bad day, with glasses (which is still an excellent look). Josh is a successful non-fiction writer who told me to get off the dime (and with the program, with digital publishing and a blog).

The other man is Tim, who’s a much shorter, much younger version of Obama (though I’d bet Baby Rae’s next chicken treat Tim’s never seen the inside of a business suit). Tim’s a rumpled genius. A kind, rumpled genius who put my blog together (and never once laughed or snickered, at least so I could hear, at my lack of computer skills).  

And now here I am—and if someone had told me a year ago I’d be a blogger, I’d have sniggered and said odds are I’ll strip to my skivvies and run half-naked through Balboa Park first—and we all know that’s never going to happen.  

Put another way, never say never.

My last post ended with Parts 1 and 2 of scary things to try before I die, so coming up next, naturally, would be Part 3 of what I now call The Angry Woman Suite Project—as in Manhattan minus the bomb stuff.

I pretty much thought I’d get at least ten blog posts out of the arts of dithering, waffling, whining and attendant nuances before moving forward with Part 3, which was to name who will format my baby (The Angry Woman Suite) and put it out there—but here’s what’s happened: another never.  

I met a third man. Actually, I met two more men. One I can’t talk about—yet. Mystery man.

(Hint: I knew him a long time ago, in school, and could never have predicted what he’s become since, or how it could affect the “project.)    

The other is Steve Jackson (aka Mr. Wonderful, and he is). Steve is the voice for Telemachus Press. I’ll be writing more about Steve and Telemachus as we go along, but for now my headline in the sky reads:

The Angry Woman Suite is coming in from the cold.  

So, Part 3 of the “project” has been implemented—already! I have a publisher, and I’m very excited at the prospect of working with Telemachus.

Know what’s odd? My entire writing life has been mostly shadowed (in a good way) by women; i.e., my mother, teachers, my critique group, my agent, my editor. But have you noticed that all the new people in my “project” story are men? Four—count ’em—four. And I’m just getting started.  

Poor me. *smile*     

Thought for the day, courtesy of Kristin Lamb:

“Learn to have a healthy relationship with failure . . . if we aren’t failing, we’re not doing anything interesting.”

Next post will be more on digital publishing and coming in from the cold; mystery men, and Telemachus Press.   

I post on Mondays and Thursdays, and sometimes more, but sometimes less. “See” you next time, and be good to yourselves.

Have fun tonight!