June 17-June 30, 2013:

Who knew Scotland could be so glorious? Two solid weeks of sunshine. One rainy midnight. Perhaps, I began to muse, I turned right when I should have turned left, and have ended up in Spain. Ah, but they speak such good English here!

I have used the time wisely–writing a lot, weeding the garden, seeing movies, going to hear a medieval opera in which my cello-playing friend Claire played in the baroque orchestra, wrote some more and some more and some more. Went antiquing with friend Debbie (scored an Arts&Crafts box for the house and some presents for others); went around the St Andrews garden scheme with friend Christine.

But mostly I wrote.

And what am I working on? As usual, a variety of things: fixing a HUGE sagging middle in the second book of the SEELIE WARS trilogy with Adam; worked on the first book of a graphic novel series (also with Adam) called STONE COLD: Hounds of Hell; worked on several parts of THE GIRLS’ BIBLE with Barbara Goldin; revised the revisions of  NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC’S ANIMAL STORIES book with all three of my kids. Backed and forthed with J. Patrick Lewis on a proposal for a second LAST LAUGHS book. Revised my poems (while waiting on Rebecca Dotlich’s poem) for a new book proposal called THE TEAPOT GOSSIP. Managed a proposal for a new BAD GIRLS type book (with Heidi) for Charlesbridge so fingers crossed there as well.Of course, the problem with working with others, is I get frustrated when they are not as fast as I am.

So I worked on some new stuff of my own, a picture book called BIRD BOY and another picture book called WILD IN THE CITY but both are pretty saggy in the middle so slow going there.

Wrote a lot of poetry–for my now 260+ subscribers to the daily poems, and reworking two major adult poetry books. (Well, major for me, not for anyone else.) THE BLOODY TIDE political poems for HolyCow!–mostly titivating and moving poems around. And a book of poems about the writing that began life as THE BLUE LINE, morphed into THE TREES COMMIT, took a side jaunt as SISTER COYOTE’S FIELD GUIDE TO THE WRITING LIFE and seems to have found its voice as SISTER FOX’S FIELD GUIDE TO THE WRITING LIFE: Poems About Being A Writer.  About fifty poems in each book. Both editors–Jim Perlman and John Patrick Pazdziora have been incredibly attentive and helpful as I flap about trying to write the poems and then write them better and then fall about in passionate fits trying to make them better still or move or remove them or adding new material. I can hear them muttering to themselves, “Finish, damn you!” but both of them are just plain too nice to say it aloud.

Saw the first glorious full color picture for THE STRANDED WHALE as well as the dummy. Candlewick will be bringing this out, I assume ither late 2014, or early 2015.

And saw the book dummy for a proposal for a book I wrote, HOW TO TAKE THREE TROLLS TO TEA with pictures by Tara Chang. And a couple of other projects are moving closer to being contracted for (I’m looking at you, Bonnie V and Yolanda!)

More anon.


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