Archive for November, 2010

I love doing radio…

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

And I especially enjoyed doing this interview with Mitch Teich, for WUWM’s Lake Effect, in Wisconsin.  I got to talk about Penny Dreadful, helicopter parents, small towns, and the line between middle-grade and young adult books…

And then, in the supplemental audio, I got to read from the book, and talk about how the world movies too fast for living.

Give a listen!

By the way…

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

Mose is five now.


How on earth did that happen?

3 days to Hanukkah! Me in the St Louis Post-Dispatch…

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

Is the deep concern in the Jewish community about intermarriage warranted?

I equate it to the question about the future of publishing. I personally love books, and it makes me sad to think about the end of books. But I believe, in reality, it’s the story that matters, and whatever happens, the human instinct to tell stories will survive. With intermarriage, I do believe that whatever else happens, the truth that Judaism is a good and important and positive force in world — and that people are affected by that and feel it — needs to exist. Whether it’s the value of Judaism or a story, whatever shift may come, I can’t imagine why it wouldn’t survive. I’m an eternal optimist. At the end of day, I do believe whatever forces of the world are against them, literature and faith will rise to the surface for a reason.

And if you like that Xmas tree menorah, you can buy it at Modertribe! I myself prefer the recycled-guitar menorah, or the shove-it-in-a-whiskey-bottle menorah!

Book bits: Thanksgiving is over…

Friday, November 26th, 2010

I’ve got a few more little things to be thankful for:

There’s a wonderful Penny Dreadful  review over at Kidsread!

The fabulous sales reps at Random House (most of all the amazing Sarah Nasif) are featuring me at Random Acts of Reading!

Baxter in the JTA Hanukkah roundup!

Penny is a holiday-fave at WORD!

Baxter at the Cybils!

Hooray for Hooray for books liking Penny!

Baxter got himself a little Apartment Therapy.

Penny finds herself in KIdzworld!

Best of all, Penny is on the Indienext Winter list, alongside books by tons of writers I really admire, including folks like Linda Sue Park, Lemony Snicket and Maira Kalman, and Cynthia Voight (one of my ALL TIME favorite authors), and (better yet) my brilliant friends Kate Messner and AS King!

So much to be thankful for…

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

Stick a fork in me.

I’m home.  Home from the road. Home to my messy house and my unpaid bills and my cranky cat and my needing-a-walk-dog and my astounding amazing family.

The trips were so good, totally worth it. I visited with great people in fun places, and met with hundreds (maybe thousands) of kids and sold hundreds and hundreds of books.  I got to drop in on warm, diverse Jewish communities and I got to see old friends, and new ones.  I visited bookstores and libraries, and toured schools.  I was interviewed for radio shows, and profiled in actual print newspapers. I slept in fancy hotels and caught up on all sorts of bad television.  I felt deeply lucky to have such an experience.  It was everything I dreamed it might be.

But now, I just want to be home. Home. Home.  I want to make a turkey in my pajama pants. I want to drink a glass of wine with my husband. I want to watch my kids tear around in the unraked yard, chasing after the dog/dragon, wielding wiffle ball bats/ swords.

My new book is done.  Done!  We even have a rough sketch for the cover.  My travel is (mostly) over.

Now I get to rest, regroup, restore. I get to clean the house, and maybe even get my hair cut.  I get to wake up, at the start of each day, surrounded by all the things and people I love most.  I get to eat oatmeal. Drink coffee. Take a walk.  Complain about the all the things I need to be doing.  I get to live my “normal” life. Over and over.  Day after day. For a bit.

Right now I can’t think of any feeling more thankful than that.

Penny Dreadful being an Indienext pick for winter is just the icing on the cake!

Elsewhere: word-juggling…

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

I’ll let you in on a secret—I’m not really an author. Actually, I’m a poet who has managed to trick a bunch of people (including some very nice editors and a terrific agent) into believing I’m an author. I’m sneaky like that.

For me, the work of writing prose is hard. All those words! My novels tend to shrink a lot, before they grow. I revise and edit myself so heavily that the pages melt away. My background in poetry, and my love of precise language, doesn’t lend itself well to the mad dash—the word-sprint—you have to do when you draft a novel.

But picture books? Ahhhhhh, picture books! Picture books are so much like poems. With their economy of language and their image-heavy text

What goes onnnnnnnnnn…

Monday, November 15th, 2010

In my heart!

I’ve been traveling too much this fall. Too much to write. Too much to blog. Too much to practice my silly uke.

But most of all, too much to relax.

Tonight, for a few minutes, the boys and I messed around with the computer, and happened to catch (while fooling with the camera) something that resembles relaxation.

The song, in case you’re curious, was one of our own spontaneous invention.  Called, “The sad sad death of the nice death fury.”

Remember when I said it’d be a crazy fall???

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

Well it is! And I’m in the thick of it. Just back from Denver for a few days, to watch Lew have croup (poor boy). Now I’m in Detroit, typing this in a hotel room.  Later in this week I head to Milwaukee, and after that home for the Atlanta Jewish Book Fest.  Then I head out again, for  Bridgewater, Louisville, and Virginia Beach.

So not much time for blogging, or anything else. If I owe you a package or email or something, I haven’t forgotten.