Both Ruth and Don are here from Hawaii and safely nestled in Sonoma County for upcoming readings from their respective books from Saddle Road Press (Woman With Crows and A Red Woman Was Crying) in the cities of Cloverdale and Sausalito and with Saddle Road Press sister Michelle Wing (Body on the Wall) and I in Berkeley.
I am very eager to celebrate also with cover photographer Robyn Beattie! I'll see her next week for Sonoma County's November Butterfly launch. I'm thrilled to be featured in several locations: Coffee Catz on Monday, November 10th and Moe's Books in Berkeley on Tuesday, November 11th. Visit my Events page for details; preferably pre-register for the Coffee Catz writing workshop (so I know how many paper dolls to make). Or just come on out for the reading.
Launch day started beautifully with a message from a new writer friend overseas informing me she'd ordered a copy! Imagine! First Butterfly out over open seas! And of course, following that blessing, in true Feral Mom, Feral Writer style, November 1 was rife with challenges to surmount on the way to the launch. First: the daughter to rescue from her Halloween sleepover, her neck stiff from having slept in her friend's dog bed (her choice, the horrified sleepover mom informed me, yep, sounds like my girl). She flinched, head pasted to her shoulder, for the whole twenty minute drive home to the refrain of "ow, ow, ow" in response to the car's every swerve. Next: the middle son: to shepherd to soccer, stepping over his 523 individual pieces of candy sorted by wrapper to tear through four laundry bins in search of matching socks and plundering cupboards for stale water bottles. And last but not least: the youngest son to prepare for an ice-skating play date. More rummaging in clothing archives for long pants which frankly we haven't worn since we lived in Sonoma County...followed by the requisite coaxing of hand-washing, hair combing, and please-&-thank-you drills.
By 12:30--with two hours to spare--the house was mine, just long enough to cut out six strings of paper dolls for workshop participants which turned out to match perfectly the number of students, including walk-ins.
My red scarf gave me fortitude for the next potential disaster--the husband, returning from the soccer match, never made it home in time to retrieve my lovingly delineated driving directions note from the kitchen table. He texted me two minutes before the workshop started from the iPhone repair shop (only my husband could destroy a phone bound in a Life Case--nothing new under our roof--see Feral Wife: Two Chainsaws, The Ocean and an Untended Husband). In my new role as busy author, I confess, I directed my husband to my website for directions (side with me? Maybe? I had writers at The Inkspot table to tend in the moment).
As much as I love my children and my husband, I wasn't prepared for how sweet it felt when they did finally come sauntering in to catch the last few poems, my husband's cell phone buzzing so many times I finally said, "Who is that guy?!!!" We all cracked up good naturally and poems, I promise, were delivered in peace...What a blessing to read to an audience of writers I'd had the chance to meet in workshop for a bit.
I continue to welcome any and all permutations of support for November Butterfly. I am funding the book tour myself and am performing as the marketing team, which involves the wearing of an entirely new bouquet of hats for me (so far a creative and playful adventure with much love and support from many writers I've come to know over the years). I'd love to be directed towards any additional reading, review, radio interview, or teaching opportunities. Here's a link to my Events page where you can read a bit about my workshop/reading structure. A copy of November Butterfly comes with the writing workshop fee and the readings after are usually free or come with a small suggested donation amount.
If you'd like to support Saddle Road Press itself, order the book directly from me through my Contact page on my website. The book is also available in paperback or Kindle editions through Amazon. I'd welcome your customer reviews on the Amazon page as well.
I invite you to check out the poetry prompts I've been writing to accompany Section I of the book (poems for iconic women). Try them out yourself or if you teach, try them with your writing students. I'd love feedback about how the exercises go and/or I'd love to come visit your writing class. Here they are:
Ophelia, Circling Possible Futures and Alternate Endings
Additional Links of Interest:
Poetry Rules; Bava caught my eye with some crossover poetry interests and with the title poem for her collection, They Talk About Death (for Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton). Her chapbook They Talk About Death is just out from Blood Pudding Press (and won the 2014 Blood Pudding Press Poetry Chapbook Contest); I've devoured the poems and adored the special care with which Blood Pudding Press packaged/presented her book. The cover art, Yellow Carousel Horse, by Erin Wells, is stunning.
I took the top one; the typewriter lives at San Diego Writers, Ink, at The Inkspot. The image for "Before the orange," of course, is by Robyn Beattie.