Saturday, February 23, 2013

In thrall.

I knew I'd need a rainy morning to start this book. Little did I know I would finish it in that same morning. Half-memoir, half-mystery. Set in Chicago, a place I know, in the world of newspapers, a place I once thought I belonged. Is that why I loved it so? No. I loved it for its pacing, its writing, its careful release of emotion and longing. Oh, just go out and buy it. But I'm warning you: read it on a rainy day.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Many valentines.

The best part about the girls' Valentine's Day Championship Volleyball (yay!) Slumber Party wasn't the heart shaped pepperoni on the pizzas I baked. (Although they were genius.) The best part was watching a group of 13 girls from many different backgrounds and experiences, from various grades (freshman to senior) shed their cynical teenage selves to sing camp songs and do elaborate hand rhythms and chants at my kitchen counter. Think "Miss Merry Mack" only a thousand times more complicated. Think the cup scene performed by Anna Kendrick in Pitch Perfect. My husband and I were entertained, mesmerized, charmed. Just last week I watched many of the same girls strut off in high heels and tight skirts to go to a black tie party. And then, to see them morph back into girlhood again, braces flashing, hair ribbons flying, brought home the dichotomy of this time in their lives. Sometimes I believe our best selves are our campfire selves.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Here's the first paragraph of an abandoned novel. So many orphans on this laptop. And so many reasons for letting them all go. But when one door closes . . . well, you know the rest. Damn, this isn't bad either. Hmmmm. Jane was never certain if she chose the beautiful things, or if they chose her. She stood in front of her work table, about to begin, inhaling the last traces of ownership in the fabric stacks, the still-hopeful scents and colors of other people’s old clothing competing for her attention, wide-wale legs and cashmere arms curling into shapes that seemed to high-kick or wave at her, when a sharp knock on the alleyway door interrupted her.She frowned and looked over her shoulder toward the divided light window, but all she saw, at first, were wet cobblestones and the blinking spaceship tail light of an old blue Chevrolet.