Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Fourth book in hand



My author copies arrived last week. That's always a happy occasion, the frosting on a writer's cake, to hold a finished product in both hands. It looked good inside and out. I always have an odd feeling, wondering how on earth my manuscript finally made it to reality. The book is listed on Dandelion and Barnes and Noble websites, but last time I checked it hadn't made it to Amazon. Once a book is listed for sale, that also helps convince me it's real.

As a writer I try to make each book different from the last. I like writing in different genres and trying to make the book interesting, regardless of topic. This book about my maternal grandmother's life was a real challenge. Failing myself is one thing, but failing my grandmother and her descendents is quite another! I stewed myself silly worrying that this project would not work as visualized.

At first I wrote in third person as a narrating onlooker into her world. One night I woke up in the middle of the night thinking third person was all wrong. Grandma was a born story teller so why not let her tell the story in first person? So My Name is Esther Clara shares her life from birth to death in first person, in her words. I lived inside her mind, so to speak, became her as I wrote. She lived again, and will continue to live through this book.

Those of you who are lucky enough to still have your grandparents, decide today to talk with them about their lives. My grandparents weren't rich or famous, but they lived the most amazing lives. I'm so thankful they shared stories with me, so grateful for their wisdom and humor, so blessed to share their DNA.

OK, enough of my shameless self-promotion. But I'm not really promoting myself. I'm promoting Esther Clara and her patient husband Herb. I want the world to know them as I did.

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I enjoy good writing by writers and poets who are not famous. My mother said I was born a hundred years too late. The older I get, the more I realize how right she was.

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