Sunday, November 29, 2009

Famous Last Words of Calvino

Just finished The Baron in the Trees by Italo Calvino, and it ends with the greatest line(s) (it's all one sentence, but a longie):

That mesh of leaves and twigs of fork and froth, minute and endless, with the sky glimpsed only in sudden specks and splinters, perhaps it was only there so that my brother could pass through it with his tomtit's tread, was embroidered on nothing, like this thread of ink which I have let run on for page after page, swarming with cancellations, corrections, doodles, blots and gaps, bursting at times into clear big berries, coagulating at others into piles of tiny starry seeds, then twisting away, forking off, surrounding buds of phrases with frameworks of leaves and clouds, then interweaving again, and so running on and on and on until it splutters and bursts into a last senseless cluster of words, ideas, dreams, and so ends.

Here's to forking off!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Ghostwriting Credit?

I love this Craigslist ad for a ghostwriter:

Hello, I have written a * * * * book that needs some polishing. The reviews have been positive so far, but there is still something that is missing. I would be willing to pay something, but ideally I am looking for someone that wants to beef up their resume.

Ideally? Ideal for whom?

As I read it, Bozo wants a ghostwriter to do the work for free and not get credit (because ghostwriters do not get credit by definition), and yet somehow be satisfied that they can use the gig to "beef up a resume."

Bozo finishes by stating "This book WILL BE PUBLISHED." All caps.

I'd love to know if anyone actually applied for this gig.

BTW, I did send out query #150!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Checking In

I have neglected this blog shamefully, so here's a post. I've sent 146 queries to agent for my wonderful historical novel (yes, it really is wonderful. Read the first couple of chapters to find out!) I will try to bump that total to 150 over the weekend.

A dear friend in another state has found an enthusiastic agent for her nonfiction book, after about 150 queries. It happens! She's going full-speed ahead now, so fast it's scary.

Rather than a roller coaster, though, my writing life is a pretty still, sometimes muddy river...much like this, taken near Paimpont Forest in France--one of the sections of old forest still left. Not necessarily where my novel takes place, but close. The kind of site you would have seen 2000 years ago.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

October Afternoon

I'm such a lucky slob. I got to visit with an amazing 93-year-old lady, and this is the view from her living room.

No good reason to be there. I was invited along with friends and served coffee and walnut torte and ice cream. Just because at 93, this lady has learned that she can take all the time she wants to do what she wants, be it have company, cook tortes in spring pans, or sleep.

Here's something from an essay she wrote; I hope she doesn't mind that I quote this tiny bit:

We're each given our life, our own Great Adventure

our chance to learn, to accomplish deeds great and small,

some of which will matter.