A Few (Somewhat Dated — It’s Fine!) Links

Friday, September 7, 2012

It’s been busy ’round here this week. I’ve been working steadily on some writing projects, including a new novel.  (Sidebar: Aiming to post my MMM F.A.Q. early next week. That one of the Qs that I’m F. A’d is about my writing — what kind of books, articles, stories I write. Will address this a bit in that post, so stay tuned!)

Along with writing, I’ve also been reading quite a bit:

  • Fiction — Gone Girl! It’s important to note here that I read this 400-pager in under a week. That is big news, if you look at my life. Ha! Anyway, you’ve gotta read this novel too, so we can talk about it, all spoiler-y and stuff. The book’s movie rights have already been snatched up by Reese Witherspoon’s production co. A friend and I have been playing a fun game of “Who’d You Cast?”)
  • Long interviews with fiction-writers — This new Granta Magazine interview with author Zadie Smith is good. Her first book in seven yearsNW, just came out. Had to to chuckle at this line from the interview:

“That’s what a novelist is: someone who does the same thing every day while things decay around them. In their pyjamas.”

  • Then there was this interview in The Paris Review on one of my all-time favorite writers (she’s Canadian!), Alice Munro. Though Munro says many great things in this piece, there’s a section where she talks about when she writes that struck me, because it’s as if she was writing about me these days — constantly trying to carve out a good chunk of time to write, and often piecing together an hour here with another one there:

“When the kids were little, my time was as soon as they left for school. So I worked very hard in those years. My husband and I owned a bookstore, and even when I was working there, I stayed at home until noon. I was supposed to be doing housework, and I would also do my writing then. Later on, when I wasn’t working everyday in the store, I would write until everybody came home for lunch and then after they went back, probably till about two-thirty, and then I would have a quick cup of coffee and start doing the housework, trying to get it all done before late afternoon.”

  • On the non-fiction side, I’ve just, just, just cracked open Teach Your Children Well. I’ve only made it through the intro and the first few pages of Chapter One, so nothing to report there… yet. Have any of you read it yet? What say you so far?
  • Then there’s The New York Times. Fine! I’ll say it: I only got around to reading the Sunday paper on Thursday. But I did it, so …  just let me be great. Two links to share there: This story on how “one person’s work-life balance can be another’s work-life overload.” And this utterly heartbreaking photo story looking at the Young and Homeless (according to the story, there are 1.6 million homeless children in the U.S.)
  • Lastly, to lighten the mood a bit, there was a funny bit from writer and memoirist J.J. Keith on Huff Post Parents: her advice to new mothers. It’s not the typical, which makes it fantastic. This might be my favorite tip:

If you don’t control your tendency to be controlling you will imprison yourself. Go ahead and try to be perfect if you want, but don’t blame the institution of motherhood or your baby when you go two years without finishing a sentence, sleeping through the night or having sex.”

Also, the fact that her parenting philosophy can be summed up, she says, in one word — “Really?” — is brilliant.

That’s it. Enjoy the reads, friends. Feel free to leave comments about any of the above below.

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