Monday, September 13, 2010


I have a dilemma. Three projects all different. Like family members, I love them sometimes and choose to ignore them sometimes, especially when I have had enough.

The children: my previously published essays.
Head Slaps, Light Bulbs and Speed Bumps, the WTF, ah ha and oops moments of one women’s life. It is a collection of twenty-five years of essays, why I wrote them and the fallout. (Plus a few new ones).

The extended family:
Spaghetti Every Day, a collection of thirty short stories about women, some nice, some not so nice. From the despair of a son going to war, to a mother murdering hers they are about many things including birth, death, intoxication, and a secret which lives in the woods for generations. Each story, with the exception of one serves spaghetti as a main meal, a leftover or as in the case of two girls on spring break…well…lets just say it reappears after too many margaritas. No recipes.

My Parents:
In Their Words, is a memoir written by my mother, after her death regarding one hundred and twenty-five love letters I found buried at the bottom of her cedar chest two days after she died. The letters were written by my parents to each other while separated by WWII. Martha MacCallum of Fox news interviewed me about the letters on air which doesn't really mean much except that I have used up 60 seconds of my 15 minutes of fame.

My mother's memoir...the words are hers, the writing is mine. Does that make it simply a novel or the dreaded conundrum…the frey-tening beast which, believed by many agents to not actually exist…the fictional memoir?
If I am incorrect in expressing my mother’s assertions then as she always said, ‘shit in your hat and pull it down over your ears’.

I skip from project to project as my mood and best sense of writing guides me. Like I said I love them all but as I write this I am ignoring them, insolent as they are right now.

I am noticing I have not listed my novel, To Walk Among Strangers as a family member but it is, sort of, like a lost lover who had taken up far to much of my attention. It needs to stew. It needs to rest, I need to rest away from it. Until I trust again the effort I put into that book and believe again it is everything I hoped it would be, it sleeps. If it was all a waste of time then, I will shit in my hat and pull it down over my ears.