So, Lynyrd Skynyrd was at my gate at the airport on Friday morning. This did not make up for the fact that Delta was in an enormous snafu such that all flights were delayed and I couldn’t make my connecting flight and there were no seats on any later flights that could possibly get me to South Bend in time for my cousin’s wedding party on Saturday. Even if I flew through Cincinnati instead of Atlanta. Even if I tried my luck and flew standby. Even if I went home and came back later. No flights. Nada. Nichts. Niente.
On Wednesday I was feeling a bit melancholy, and I’d also run out of bagels (possibly related). So I went for a walk to the bagel store, listening to sad Ani DiFranco songs on the way. When I got there, the bagel store was closed, so I walked to the grocery store, where the bagels are less stupendous, but acceptable in emergencies. On the way home I wore my sunglasses and my sun visor because the light was blinding, and I crouched under my purple sparkly iridescent umbrella because it also happened to be pouring. Just your normal summer day in north Florida.
My title comes from a song by Patty Griffin, who’s on my iPod and in all my CD players at the moment, thanks to my friend Joan, who also happens to be one of my intrepid readers.
- I am the best person for the job. (I mean, sure, Joyce Carol Oates would do a way better job revising Fire, but then it wouldn’t be Fire anymore. It would be A Brilliant Work of Magnificence by Joyce Carol Oates.)
- It’s another opportunity to get at the heart of who Fire is and express that to an audience. Opportunities! We like them! Yay! (What? My enthusiasm seems forced? Look over there, a yak!)
- There is no need to make Fire lovable to everyone. Think of Fanny Price. I’ve never been able to love Fanny Price, but it doesn’t mean Mansfield Park isn’t wonderful. There can be good things about the book Fire even if Fire herself isn’t universally lovable.
- Besides, I love Fire. And Fire depends on me to do her characterization justice. So I’m not afraid to do what I have to do; I’ll jump into her head again; I’ll do it for Fire; I’ll figure out who she is, and let her be who she needs to be.
- Also? *thbbbbbbpppppt*
- So there.
- And my final point is this one.
I thought y’all might be getting tired of my book cover, so today I’m giving you my agent wearing a Graceling tattoo on her pregnant belly. Doesn’t it look great?!! Faye, if the baby turns out to be a Graceling, don’t blame me. And don’t name him Po. Apparently that means “butt” in German.
So, my earplugs are among my most prized possessions. Nothing is more important to a writer than a pair of earplugs when, for example, your neighbor develops musical ambitions, or someone starts blowing dust along the sidewalk with one of those damn leaf-blowers. My neighborhood isn’t quiet, and most days I put in the earplugs at some point. It helps me focus to be immune to audible distractions.