Sunday, July 31, 2005

Roundup

Glad to be home for a bit

These weeks are filled with book events and work-related duties. I’m glad to be back home for a bit, even if the office is knee deep in paper. Coming up on August 11 is a signing at the new Barnes and Noble in Jacksonville. Located at St. John’s Town Center, the store invited me to sign with several other authors from the area. Dorothy Fletcher, who’s also signing, and I will have information about our new writers’ retreat, Wordstream. Dorothy and I are teaming up to facilitate these retreats every few months or so, always in a location by a river. We’re aiming at a writing experience, as opposed to a standard workshop.

Savannah

Savannah was great. The Barnes and Noble at Oglethorpe Mall is a big, bustling super store. The traffic was insane. Yesterday was a sales tax holiday in Georgia, so everyone was out picking up back-to-school books and supplies. As is often the case, my new book Killing Earl sparked some interesting conversations. I talked with several parents whose children are experiencing hard-to-diagnose illnesses. It’s becoming more evident to me that dealing with the medical profession can be perplexing even for those of us who are educated.

A highlight of yesterday’s event was meeting a young man named Jared who is from a small Georgia town. Jared is a serious writer. He picked up my poetry book, and I gave him some information. I thought about him today. I’ll bet that one of these days, he’ll be signing his own book.

After the event, I went with fellow writers to Belford’s . It’s a fine restaurant near City Market. They do their crab cakes tall rather than flat—they’re supposed to be the best, and they surely looked that way. Ken Bell, Joyce Dixon, Janet Carr-Hull, Kathryn Wall and I (with my husband Ran and Kathryn’s husband Norman) really had a good time talking shop. A fine writer, Joyce Dixon is also the ultimate nurturer for Southern writers (well, we’re calling Kathryn Southern because she lives here now and we keep forgetting she’s a transplant). Joyce’s Southern Scribe is a great literary resource for all writers, and we thank her for organizing this event.

Net nuggets
A source of valuable information to me lately is Jim Amaral. I know Jim through Southern Scribe. Jim’s our Computer Guru. I’ve been looking at laptops, and he’s really helped me out. Jim writes a column, Cybermac for The Columbus Dispatch.

My friend W. Thomas Smith, Jr., has been named executive editor of World Defense Review, Reporting War . This news site is updated twice weekly; a variety of viewpoints and positions are featured. I read several articles. Dr. Alma Bond’s feature America’s First Woman Warrior caught my eye for two reasons: the woman warrior angle plus the fact Dr. Bond reviewed Killing Earl recently. I don’t know this distinguished writer, but her article is fascinating. I printed it for my daughter who’s interested in empowered females, being one herself.

You’ll note some new links I’ve added on the right column. One, Sarah Weinstein’s blog offers a wealth of information about writing and the book biz. Check out her post of July 26, and the breakdown on sales outlets for a sample best-seller. I’d no idea the impact Wal-Mart can have on book sales.

Finally, I've added a new page to my Net site, Patient Communications. The page offers tips for dealing with chronic illness.

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