BETWEEN THE LINES

Two weeks without writing. Yikes.

August 27, 2012

Tags: vacation

Vacation is over and Iím home. I didnít write a word of fiction in two weeks; I canít remember the last time that happened. Usually I write on vacation. This time, I decided to take a break from my characters. My two delicious grandchildren might have had something to do with that decision.

Instead of writing, Iíve been time travelling - decades back in time - to recapture muscle memories long unused. Like the unconscious sideways sway my body begins the second 12-week-old Abel settles on my chest in the BabyBjorn. How to maintain that baby-sway while cooking a scrambled egg for four-year-old Josie or drinking coffee or checking email on my laptop. Not that we had email back then, of course. (more…)

Reading Kingsolver and Chabon

August 1, 2012

Tags: Barbara Kingsolver, Michael Chabon, Flight Behavior, Telegraph Avenue

Some books create worlds so complex and multifaceted that itís difficult to write cogently about them, much less reduce them to three or four or five stars. Sometimes my reactions are complicated too, and take time to sort out. Iím glad Iím not a book reviewer by profession; as a fiction writer, I read novels for enjoyment of course, but also to learn - to deconstruct a compelling voice, make mental notes about an unusual perspective or dissect a clever pacing device.

Recently, Iíve read advance copies (thank you, HarperCollins) of two admirable and complex novels: FLIGHT BEHAVIOR by Barbara Kingsolver and TELEGRAPH AVENUE by Michael Chabon. Iím still chewing on the varied delights offered by both of them, and still second-guessing my criticisms. (more…)