Saturday, May 21, 2011
My Buddha has been doing cartwheels (in a detached sort of way) here, there, and everywhere and I am just now getting caught up with all the changes going on. (Okay. I'm not even close to getting caught up. Still back at, Wow! I have an agent!) So this will be a mostly newsy post so that I'll at least get you caught up.
The novel. Last you heard, I was zip-a-dee-doo-dahing through the Redwoods after a week of areyoufrigginkiddingme? news about The Underside of Joy, which will be published by Dutton in January 2012. It will also be published in 12 other countries, in 12 languages, including Hebrew and Chinese.
I am still...there are no words...at least not in English. I will have to ask the Chinese translator.
But. (There is always a but.) My dear friend and writing sister, Ellen, has been very ill. Her gorgeous book, The Sandalwood Tree, came out April 5th and was greeted by a mass of wonderful reviews. I was able to spend the first half of April with her -- time I already treasure. We talked and talked, as we have for more than 15 years. We talked about life. And about death. And about writing, always writing. To get a glimpse of why I love her so much, read The Sandalwood Tree.
And. (There is always an and, too it seems.) While I was visiting my beautiful, talented, funny friend, I got some amazing news. The Underside of Joy was chosen to be one of six books discussed at the Book Expo America Editors Buzz Panel.
But. As you know, with good news often comes more work, so we've been rushing to get everything done in time for BEA, which is in NYC May 23-26. As I've mentioned before, I'm a bit of a barnacle and not particularly adept at rushing, so I've been a few miles out of my comfort zone, leaping here and there over hurdles like a gazelle. (Picture, if you will, a gazelle wearing clogs. On her way to NYC.)
Fortunately, my edits went quickly and smoothly and were done before we heard the news. Next up were the copyedits, cover design -- which I love -- and author photo. My website is done. Isn't it cool? (More about that later.) And I finished making changes to the first pass galleys: my words, typeset, looking more and more like a real book. Holy Moly.
And...This week, Publisher's Marketplace posted my first review, and it's lovely. Huge sigh of relief. You have to be a member to access it there, but if you really, really want to read it and don't want to pay the $20 monthly fee, I've posted it under News on my site. Absolutely free. No membership required.
See? A newsy post. A little light and breezy. But in the middle of it all, here I am, not able to articulate the depth of sadness I feel about my writing sister's struggle that lies below all the happy news and excitement. If I were to try to name it? I guess I would call this the underside of joy, too.