Thursday, February 23, 2012


On the radio: something worth loving.

Monday, February 20, 2012

The heat and the sauce.

Today’s revision goals: Turn up the heat.

There’s sideways love in the YA nov. “Sideways” in the sense that it’s not in the driver’s seat, but it’s certainly in the backseat leaning forward. Though the character has a hot streak that’s crucial to the story’s climax, he’s fairly laidback.

And so he should be. I don’t want him running the show. But I’d like him to be a little saucier. Make moments a little more tense.

Connor McDermott, help me to channel your unending hots.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Note to self:

Editing is not merely the elimination of words. I tend to do that: strip down until the sentences are clear and bare. But I have to not be afraid of expansion, though I worry it will appear meandering and fluffy.

The story begins to feel like a body patched together. A snip here, a new layer of skin there. Blazing pink lines and soft white scars.

Additional note to self: putting in thirteen miles over two days after weeks of not a whole lot leaves one’s legs tender. Very tender.

Copperhead Road

Firing new synapses is one way to turn mental traffic from one direction to another. Like teaching yourself this dance last night when you saw the way everyone else kicked, and you felt your toes start to tap.


Read: The Fault In Our Stars, John Green

Friday, February 17, 2012

may the odds be ever in your favor

February has been a month of bold moves.

The only way to better the odds is to give yourself enough options. Within two days, I had entered five different lotteries: a writing contest, two movie premieres, a marathon, a concert. The first was most important. The marathon, well, I could live without gaining entry. In fact, I probably have a better chance of living if I don't participate.

I tend to lurk. Not in the back alley way. More like quiet reading and research without raising my voice. Or without saying anything at all. I wait. And wait.

Until now.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

104 meets 24.

I thought it was a river, but it turned out to be a road instead.

self, meet self

I have to accept that some days (and, sadly, weeks), I am not going to run. I will try to wake up early, but it won’t be enough. There will be something else that I need to do. The voices of so many children who all need something immediately, hands reaching for me.

Soon, though. A time for black and electric blue sneakers. The hiss of cold air on surprised legs. The old slow way of rebuilding.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Real people, fake arms

The prompt: Rewrite "The meal was tasty" with a sound.

The response: "The morbidly obese man grunted as he bit into his eighth cheeseburger."

Wednesday, February 01, 2012


We sat the kids down today for an inspirational talk. At one point, my fellow coach compared the practice and time required to be a successful gymnast to the preparations needed in school to attend a good college. “In fact,” he said, “gymnastics is harder. Fear, pain, injuries.”

I used that same logic when I had to make a long drive by myself at night several years ago. I was afraid that my Internet maps and mix CDs and ice cream that I promptly spilled on the seat wouldn’t be enough. I’d wind up lost or struck by another car or just…I didn’t know, but just worse off than I’d be if I’d stayed put.

When I sat in the driver’s seat, I thought back to practice. Anyone can drive. Not everyone can do aerials on beam, I told myself, and turned the ignition.

After the talk today, I thought about my present fears. About how reluctant I am to press “send” on an email and receive no, thanks, not right for us or silence.

Anyone can click a mouse. Not everyone can turn upside down and back up again.

Here we go, February.