Friday, March 02, 2007

Making a Literary Life Friday: Community

Tuesday night, Amy (l) and Lynne (r) attended Patry Francis' workshop at Grub Street South at Buttonwood Books. As expected, the crowd loved her and lined up to buy her amazing book, The Liar's Diary. Thank you, Patry!

Yay for trying to hone our craft. Although family obligations prevented me from attending Patry Francis's presentation at Buttonwood Books, I know Amy and Lynne found it valuable! I read a piece on Patry's literary journey and found it (and her) to be inspirational.

Good news for readers: Kristy Kiernan's debut, Catching Genius, will be released next week, March 6. Buy this book, you won't be disappointed. Also, I wrote charming notes to several writers and received charming notes in return. This is something Carolyn See recommends we writers do -- not with expectations of any sort -- simply to send good thoughts out into the world. So, in honor of Carolyn See, the patron goddess of writers, how about you head on over to her website and write her a charming note.

I am brushing up my query and rereading Best American Short Stories 2006 edited by Ann Patchett; thanks to Amy for reminding us how fabulous it is! She cited Edith Pearlman's story; you can't miss Paul Yoon's lead-off piece, either. Or any of the others. Maybe next go-round I'll try the short story form, not because I will be faster at that, but because it is so gorgeous and challenging. I also have promised myself Best American Nonrequired Reading 2006, edited by Dave Eggers with the introduction by Matt Groening. How fun does that sound?

I want to begin by saying thanks to Carolyn See. Our Making a Literary Life Friday posts inspire me to take little steps each week that are impacting my writing in wonderful ways. I'm so glad she's pleased we modeled our posts after her not-to-be-missed book. I sent out two charming notes this week and received a charming response. I keep each correspondance I write and receive in a separate email folder. On days when doubt runs high, I read the kind and encouraging words of writers who know how it feels to navigate this writing life. And I went to two programs. Patry's was a lot of fun. Hallie Ephron's workshop on character development was excellent. I've been tweaking character traits all week.

Literary Events:
Carolyn See, whose fabulous book is the inspiration for Friday's MLLF posts, is doing a reading at the Auditorium Library of Bucks County Community College on Friday, March 9, at 8 p.m. in Newton, PA. If anyone is down that way, make a point to see her and introduce yourselves!


Therese said...

I'm so envious of Amy and Lynne getting to hang out with Patry in real time! She comes by my blog now and then (and I visit hers) but I'll be she's even better in person!

And I just finished THE LIAR'S DIARY, which I'm recommending to everyone I know! I like what you all are saying about writing notes, so maybe I should write one to Patry when I'm done here.

Lynne Griffin and Amy MacKinnon said...

You're right, Therese, she's even more fascinating in person. Don't you love charming notes? Writers are always grateful for a written embrace from a satisfied reader.

Anonymous said...

I loved Making A Literary Life, and I suppose it's time I told Ms. See!

And thank you, Amy, for THAT charming note to readers about Catching Genius. I was out, early, on the shelf at Books-A-Million last night, and I have to say, the feeling was amazing, truly amazing!

Lynne Griffin and Amy MacKinnon said...

Did you cry? I think I would cry the first (second, tenth) time I saw my book in a store. And, my goodness, what a good book. Catching Genius is both beautifully written and a goods story -- not a claim every book can make. For me, though, it was the ending that stayed with me. Congratulations, Kristy, you must be bursting.


Patry Francis said...

I really look forward to Making a Literary Life Fridays around here! I always come away inspired.

This week was even better because it recalled our meeting. Thank you Amy and Lynne for coming to my workshop. It was truly a delight to finally meet in person. I can't wait to read your novels!

Lynne Griffin and Amy MacKinnon said...

You are an inspiration, Patry. I think my favorite part about your workshop, other than the hope you gave the audience, was your PowerPoint presentation. Very innovative.