Friday, August 31, 2012

Friday Evening

Compare this to Monday's photo taken at approximately the same time!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Monday, August 27, 2012

Found on Monday

an old sketch (!?) and a handful of sea glass

Friday, August 24, 2012


The shoes that I imagine my publisher keeps under her desk.

Late last night I finished the pictures for my book. I uploaded them to my art director's FTP site and went to bed. I couldn't imagine what it would feel like to wake up this morning and to be finished with something I'd been working on for nine months.

Well, woke up. I felt like going right back to sleep, so I did. I slept til 8:30. I checked my email. Lauren had written at 6:30 this morning saying HOORAY. (Actually she said "Huzzah! HUZZAH! All the art! Thank you LD! I'm off to fetch it now––can't wait to check it out!...")

I went back to sleep again, and slept the sleep of happiness. At 9:30 I woke up and finished reading my book (WHERE'D YOU GO, BERNADETTE). A little after 10:00 I had another email from Lauren concerning the sneeze page. The copyeditor had wondered why the dots were flying off the sneezer's shirt. Was the sneezer sneezing so hard that she was dislodging the dots? If so, they weren't sure it was working.

I got up and removed the flying dots, and then I didn't know what to do. I didn't have to do anything immediately. Although it's true: I hadn't paid bills in months, the weeds in the back yard were 3 feet high, my fingernails were inches long, my hair was a bird's nest, I hadn't started on taxes that were due last April, I needed to make teeth and eye appointments, stuff like that. But my book was done!

I ate leftover Thai and realized that what I really wanted to do was the same thing I do every time I finish a big project: go shoe shopping. But I had told Lauren that I would be here all day to take care of any corrections. But she hadn't sent me any corrections since the sneeze dots, and that was hours ago. I ate some cheese crackers and waited a little longer. Then I emailed her:

Hey Lauren, how's it going?
If you don't think you'll need me in the next hour or two, I might go to the shoe store.
Many x's & o's,

I copied my publisher. I didn't mean to, but I've gotten into the habit.

This is an outstanding example of what a great publisher I have. She wrote back herself:

She bailed on us already cause her bro is in town.

Then a few minutes later she followed up with another email that simply said:

Do you know about them?


There happens to be a Fluevog store 15 minutes from me and I didn't even know it. It's so dangerous out there! I tried on the blue pair of boots at the top, and also a sparkly pair of flats.


Oh well. We woke up today and our refrigerator was kaput. It hurts to think that for this inexpensive refrigerator, I could buy two pairs of Fluevogs. Or 13 pairs of Pumas in different colors from the Rack.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Today's Prompt: A bottle of pills

Once in while if you're fortunate, a book can do as much for you as a bottle of pills. I can't believe my luck lately: I've just finished reading a great book, and I've just started a book that's one of those I'm scared to read too fast for fear it will be over too soon.

The book I just finished is called HOW TO BE A WOMAN by Caitlin Moran. After I read the free sample I immediately bought it. I was so excited that I posted a comment on Facebook that said:

"Just downloaded HOW TO BE A WOMAN." Immediately Bobby wrote in response, "Good luck, Linda."

It's a book about living life with two X chromosomes. It's fun-loving, serious, and unabashedly feminist.

About the 2nd book! If I could write like anybody in the whole wide world––if you asked me that question today, I would say, "Maria Semple." Hers is the book I just started and it's called WHERE'D YOU GO, BERNADETTE. Wow, wow, wow, ha-ha, and wow. (Obviously I can't write as well as she does quite yet.)

My eyes are burning today because I stayed up until 2:30 a.m. reading it. I couldn't stop.

First thing I did at breakfast––before I even poured the coffee––was to bring it up and check the line at the bottom of the screen that shows how far you've read. I was so relieved to find I still had 2/3's to go. I immediately slammed it shut so I wouldn't finish the whole thing before lunch.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Happy Birthday, Aggles!

left to right: Aggles age 1, me age 4

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Saturday Part One

left to right: Judy's ten toes, my ten toes

Judy and I had side-by-side chairs at Nails Today. It was my first real pedicure. $23 for over an hour of soaking and massaging and softening and polishing.

Judy's new book is out! It is spectacular. Adorable and funny.

We had ordered French fries along with our pizza and kept waiting for them to arrive for the photo op. But they didn't arrive in time so we had to eat the pizza without them. Judy chose the Pt. Reyes Blue pizza with caramelized onion, fig balsamic vinegar, peppered walnuts, and arugula.

We agree about a lot of things, but pizza isn't one of them. Judy prefers her pizza 2 or 3 inches thick and I prefer mine thin and crispy. This one was a good compromise.

Saturday Part Two

For Part Two I'll use today's prompt which is actually a photo instead of a word or phrase. The photo shows a girl on the street trying to make a phone call. (Write for 10-12 minutes and send to your partner.)

Rudy, a brand new friend, had invited Tom and me to his house at 5:00 this afternoon. He said that it was supposed to be sunny and he wanted to cook out. I knew 5:00 would be cutting it close because Judy and I were going to be in East Bay all day. When we accepted the invitation I let Rudy know this, and asked for his phone number just in case.

But he didn't e-mail it to me, and I didn't want to press him.

I was scattered and excited after Judy dropped me off at home. The bridge traffic had stalled, and it was almost 5:00.

We had never been to Rudy's house. Tom asked me for Rudy's address so he could print out a map to his house. I scrambled through some old e-mails and found it. I yelled it to Tom in the next room, and ran into the kitchen to find a phone book. For some reason at the time I thought it would be easier to find Rudy's phone number in the book than on line. It was probably the first time I'd used a phone book in two years.

I was surprised to find his name listed. I wrote the number down so I could call him in the car to let him know we would be 20-25 minutes late.

Tom grabbed the ice cream (Strauss Dutch Chocolate--but honestly, just for your information, Ben&Jerry's Coffee Heath Bar Crunch is much better and half the price.)

I didn't change clothes or even wash my face; we just jumped in the car. Tom drove, and I called Rudy. The phone number in the phone book turned out to be his OFFICE phone number!

When we got near the street, Tom asked me to look at the map. We figured out how to approach the street, turned onto it, and then Tom said, "What's the address?"

"I don't have the address. You mean you don't have the address?"

"But you gave me the address! Did you not write it down?"

"No! I thought you were printing out the map." The address wasn't on the map.

"Park the car and let's just walk up and down the sidewalk. We're so late I bet he'll be looking out his window and he'll see us."

12 minutes is up at.

p.s. But let me go on to say that we had the most magical evening once we finally figured out Rudy's address.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Gina and Me

Gina and me; lunch by the sea.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Sea Glass and Gumbo

The tide has been low in the evenings the past week and I've been bringing home glass by the pocketfuls. (Plus one green guitar pick found over by the fire pits.)

The present is a book for Nina, who starts preschool soon!

Last night Emmy and John had us over for our birthdays and we had a stupendous meal.

Soon as we walked in Emmy herded us over to the appetizers. Crackers, cheeses, gigantic salted nuts, a fresh fruit salad, 3 bottles of wine standing by. My place card at the table was a huge box of Mary Janes, and Tom's place card was a box of Sugar Babies.

John had seafood gumbo on the stove and cornbread in the oven. A pear cobbler baked while we ate. Everything was gluten-free. Do you believe these people? The wine flowed.

After dessert John took everyone's blood pressure with his new blood pressure kit and we all rolled on the floor laughing.

Emmy sent me home with a bag of homemade chocolate chip cookies.

It took me 6 times longer today than it usually does to do any one thing. I did not venture outside this evening nor did I want for one drop of wine.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

My Team

My publisher, Catdog

My art director, Hazelnut

My editor, Patch

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Proofreading and Shoes

my new shoes

Are you like me? Do you wait until you've sent an e-mail to proof it?

That's fine if it's a friendly e-mail, but business is different. Especially if you spell your literary agent's name Ruben instead of Rubin, and in the same e-mail ask if he'd like to take a peak at what you're working on.

Why is it so hard simply to print out an e-mail and proof it? Because it takes an extra 60 seconds, that's why!

A note is one thing. Manuscripts are another. Here's something I've recently taken to heart: When you're writing a story--Anne Lamott says this--don't worry about wasting paper. Print like crazy. If you're really worried about all the trees you're killing by the tons of paper you're using, she suggests sending a check to the Sierra Club.

It helps so much to see something you've typed onto the screen printed out on paper.

But here's a spectacular thing I recently learned on my own: If I write something in my studio and print it out, it really helps me to be able to read it with fresh eyes if I go into another room. If I take it into another room and sit in a different chair. The light will be different too.

Of course it's best if you can put the story away for six months and then pull it out and read it. But if you don't have that luxury, going into another room and sitting in a different chair under a different light can help a lot. And if you have a new pair of shoes you can change into, that accelerates the process.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Indoors Outdoors



Where would you rather be?

Me? Indoors, for sure! I trudged 2 miles down the beach and 2 miles back this evening. In my down jacket and earmuffs and gloves. I'm sure the beach looks healthy and romantic––and I feel so lucky to live here––but I would rather be at my computer than anywhere else on earth.

I love the project I'm working on and I can't wait to be able to tell you every little thing about it. I'm not positive, but I think it's getting close to that time.

Though it was fun to run across this in the sand.