Monthly Archives: February 2011

Note to Self: Keep Going

The Uninspiring View

The view from my couch is not inspiring.  It’s raining on top of several feet of old snow out there.  I dropped off the car for new tires before Rini’s garage opened and walked home in the rain, over ice, falling once.  So far today, I’ve revised one page of Book 3, and I can already tell: it’s going to be work this morning.  Looking at glamour photos from the Oscars last night is not going to… Continue reading

To Love, Cherish, and Critique?

I asked my published writer friends if they show their writing to their spouses or loved ones, and out of twelve writers, five of us only rarely, if ever, show our work to our spouses, and seven of us regularly do.  A few of us show our spouses our writing every day and depend upon their feedback as an integral part of the writing process.

Showing your writing to anybody always involves trust, and when you show it to someone… Continue reading

Facebook, Amigas, and a Foreign Rights Deal

Thanks to the Internet, I’ve become friends with Eva Rubio, a university student in Salamanca, Spain, who blogged enthusiastically about Birthmarked last summer.  Eva was determined for Birthmarked to be translated into Spanish, so she and her friend Rocío Muñoz started a Facebook page aptly named Queremos que Birthmarked de Caragh M. O’Brien sea publicado en España and started collecting followers.  I thought they were unbelievably nice, but I didn’t hold out much hope.

When my family made plans to… Continue reading

O, Singing Pioneer.

My mother’s friend once invited me to lead a sing-along for the Pioneer Homestead Society at the Minnesota State Fair.  “She’s looking for someone young,” my mom said, which should have been a tip-off right there that the event was doomed.  Did you ever notice how you can say no to your mother, but you can’t say no to your mother’s friend?  I imagined this musty room of old people and some fellow dupe in an arm garter accompanying me… Continue reading

Advanced Kids

When I was in sixth grade, the Visitation nuns sent me to seventh grade Literature, which meant I had to go up the stairs to the junior high hallway and sit with older girls who didn’t like me much.  I was scared of them and intimidated by the teacher, so I picked one of the desks closest to the wall, kept my knees together and my feet under my chair, and didn’t say much. We read David Copperfield, Treasure Island,… Continue reading

French Dreams

Birthmarked in France, February 11

J’ai oublié presque tous ce que j’ai appris quand j’étais une étudiante à Paris il y a plusieurs décennies, mais parfois même maintenant je rêve en français et sens le mélange de l’échappement d’autobus, du pain, et des arbres d’eucalyptus sous la pluie. Maintenant, ma fille est une étudiante à Rennes, la même ville où Helène Bury la traductrice de Birthmarked vit. Nous allons prendre le café ensemble, nous trois, quand je visite la France… Continue reading