Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Crazy Cat Lady - or - Messing with kids and calling it Education...

Am I the only one who noticed this?

Sept. 1    Jen Knox on FB - I've got four new motherless kittens to give away. Anyone in San Antonio want a kitten? They are adorable.
Sept. 4     I've still got those six kittens....
Sept. 10   Yay! Found a home for one of the kittens. Seven to go.
Sept. 17   Gave away three of the adorable kittens to a great family. Anyone want one? Still have six left.
Sept. 20   Eight precious kittens looking for a good home in SA. Know anyone?

So...what? Jen is a wonderful person, is fabulous with animals. But, her husband is a math genius. I know someone in their house can count. What up then, with the wandering numbers... then I figured it all out.

Page five of the San Antonio Express News:
Neighbors are beginning to worry. Someone seems to be collecting kittens....

I've read Jen. Have you? Musical Chairs. Here's a link to my review.
Jen is a skillful writer. You believe what she tells you in those pages. I've known of her a bit more than a year and I swear to God, when I read her book I was sobbing, "I hope she's going to be alright...."
Hyper-real is an apropos description when discussing that book. You believe that you will read she died.

In other words, Jen could adopt out those kittens to the very same folks she 'borrowed' them from—and she probably is.
Let's go back to her book, Musical Chairs. It's not her only book. So if you've been craving another Jen Knox tome...there is another one, just released. To Begin Again. I wrote an entire feature on the point of Jen's renewed beginnings. She has several.

Then I remembered the cats.
Have you looked at the cover art for her first book? There are three cats on that montage. I swear. Evidence of a feline fixation, I tell ya.
(like that cover? So do I.) Oh, here's a link to her author page on FB.

Now that you know of two books...she has a lot more for you to discover. Jen is prolific. She has articles, poems, flashfiction and short stories published. They can be found in magazines, ezines, anthologies, textbooks. ? Oh, yeah. She's an educator. Jen's exquisite multiple beginnings have culminated in something akin to Nirvana. She writes, she gets published, she teaches writing. I crave such things, and she often says that she only stumbled into it all.

This is just one

The Chinese claim that cats are lucky. You do the math. Jen gets to see her words in print, and then gets to claim the awards those words have brought her.
Prolific, and Presented.

I have often argued that, given enough of a writer's words, we will know them utterly. Even if they write zombies, or Jen's personal pet-peeve, vampires. A writer is unable to keep themselves out of their writing; IMHO. Jen goes me one better. She has placed herself so completely in her own writing that you cannot find anything fictional about it. Even the poetry. Poetry, to some, is emotion expressed in alphabet.

Well, that's Jen. Even her story about a lingering love; re-sparked memories of a woman, given breath again by nothing more than dry entries in a notebook diary. Jen calls that a sad poem. I call it a sublime glimpse into Jen's mind. She reads her inner diary every day. She searches for the most meaningful lines, embraces them and then lives them again.

The cats? Don't you wish your own lazy hound had remained a puppy forever? Jen has found the secret to having kittens forever: borrow them, then give them away and borrow another.

She still has nine, still looking for good homes.

I wouldn't worry in the least about her influence on those college kids. They are in the company of a very sound mind.

Do your students call you Professor?
Yes, even though I tell them to call me Jen. Some students call me ma’am, which seems overly formal and makes me think those particular students can’t remember my name.

Describe one of your courses, and tell us why you chose that subject.
I teach creative writing. I make my student write something creative based on a prompt. Then, I tell them to do better (I’m a little more specific than this), even if they’re already great. When they begin writing better, getting more concrete and intense, telling more potent stories, I tell them to do even better. When they’ve done even better, I tell them to quit making me look bad. It’s a great gig.

Are you a Texan yet?
I don’t have the bumper sticker yet, no, but I do buy Texas-shaped cheese, and I like the smoky BBQ smell that’s everywhere.

“The em dash is what makes a 200 word sentence possible.” If that is an original thought of your own, I love you.
Thanks. I love the em dash. Some would think I love it to a fault. For the record, I’ve never written a 200 word sentence, nor will I, but I can’t imagine one existing without the em dash.

Name one literary classic you believe to be overrated.
I have to give kudos to any piece of writing that can stand the test of time. If a book bores me, it just means I’m not ready for it yet, or that it’s not what I’m into right now. I like to keep an open mind because what I read now is far different than what I read ten years ago. I’m sure this will be the same ten years from now.

I’ve heard that you’ve tossed story ideas aside, because they didn’t come alive for you. That implies you write a lot. Do you get to write as much as you like?
Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of time to write. I have two jobs and quite a few other regular obligations. I can’t say I’ve ever tossed a story too far away, though I do leave them be when they’re not working. I don’t think everything everyone writes is good. And this is especially true for me. Sometimes ideas don’t take, and when this happens, I’ve learned to save my story and leave it be. Quality, liveliness, vigor: these should come before completion always, always, always. Wanting to finish everything just for a sense of completion often wastes everyone’s time (readers and the writer’s). I hope to get more time to write one day, but if not, I’ll keep writing in the meantime, the in-between time, and I can only hope I’ll stay humble enough to toss things to the sideline when they don’t work.

I read your poem Relapse. No one reading this needs to be told directly why it’s one of the most unique poems I’ve ever read. They should go find it themselves. What struck me was the support network you gave to Kathy; there are quite a few people reaching out to her. Did you know, it is almost exactly the number of concerned loved ones who supported you most in Musical Chairs? Relatives, friends, even a disconnected acquaintance offering assistance—they are all there.
Cool observation. Life is such a tapestry, but it takes a keen eye to see the patterns.

Define a writer.
A person who calls his/herself a writer.

Why not vampires?
I don’t have the skills to pull off a good vampire tale. Kudos to anyone who can.

I enjoyed your experiments with music and writing. What did you ultimately decide about tunes and your muse?
My muse likes total silence, and she gets moody when it’s not there. She admits to liking rap music, but it makes her want to write raps, and she’s no good at that. I really think my muse needs a therapist.

Where is Absurd Hunger?
It’s in the cloud (or should I say on the cloud?). I think I’ll publish it one day. I just don’t have enough emotional distance from the story yet. To be honest, I might just rewrite the whole thing. We’ll see. This is the freedom of not being under contract: I can always put out only my best work.

Is it the only writing you have attempted, from a man’s perspective?
Here’s one, here’s one (but be warned that it’s sad):   Ha! I knew perfectly well, you would take us back to that one.

Do you keep a journal or diary?
Not currently. But I’m a big advocate of others doing so.

(read this then look at the editor's words at the top again...he thought it felt real.  It was David; it was documentary.)

Have you kept anything from your childhood; anything you can pick up to hold, right now?
A Strawberry Shortcake doll is on my desk, staring at me right now. She’s not an intentional keepsake. It’s actually creepy the way she’s followed me around, and the way she still smells like strawberries. I’m thirty-two years old, which means she has to be about twenty, and still, she smells like strawberries!

Favorite food: Can you prepare it, or must you go out for it?
Caprese salad. I love fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and basil. It’s such a simple but perfect salad. I suppose I could make it, but I would prefer to a good Greek restaurant.

What are you reading right now?
Ayiti by Roxane Gay. Good stuff.

I really like the video work on your book trailer. Who is KnoxworX? Why do I get the impression you are also an artist?
My father did my trailer. He’s a remarkable visual artist. I’ve often tried to follow in his footsteps, but visual art never quite works for me. It’s funny because that art gene is in every one of my family members.

What is your favorite type of story?
The sort of story that makes me cry or throw things or look in disbelief and reread immediately. I like realistic fiction, the stuff that feels more real than nonfiction, the stuff that screams and whispers at the same time.

Are you a finicky writer, hardly ever satisfied with your words?
I like a few pieces. At some point, I’ve liked every piece that I’ve put out in the world; but as I write more and my own standards get higher, I tend to reevaluate my older work and expect more from future work. But this is all part of the game.

Does your husband edit for you, or will you let him?

No. He’s not much of a reader. He’s a math guy, and I love him for it, or despite it. His equations give me migraines, and I’m pretty sure my literary ramblings do the same for him. I’m thankful for this, actually. It means that no matter how bad a story is, he’ll love me just the same. It also means I can write whatever I want about him and he’ll never bitch because he’ll never read it.

Complete this beginning:
The roses never bloom’d there, even as the season called them.
The author of a self-improvement bestseller stood over the area and declared the roses responsible for not believing in themselves; a religious leader stood there and said the roses were not there because they were not blessed; the roses across the street said that they could grow there because they were superior roses and what was planted there was a weaker type.
None of them saw the bud that appeared there a little late, none of them stuck around to know that the most remarkable roses grew there, off-season, nor that they were picked by a child who loved them, ran home with them, and offered them to his mother who had been having a particularly tough day.

Have you ever played a game of softball?
If so, I’ve blocked the experience from my consciousness.

Your book has just been praised, and you are stunned they had even found you. Who has praised your book?
Ellen Degeneres. Thanks, Ellen! No, no need to make a custom dance to accompany my book review. Well, if you insist.

Have you found contentment?
Yes! I find it quite often, and I’m grateful each and every time.

And with that...she becomes a philosophy professor....
Thank you, heaps and bunches, Jen.

Nearly all my guests have been friends, before I read them and called them into this corner. Jen was an acquaintance. (We know so many authors..don't we all?)
Musical Chairs made her a friend.
My review was raw truth—I read that book in six hours. It just stunned me that every word of it was a moment of this woman's life, and she wanted me to know those moments. Jen shared herself in ways that family sometimes cannot do. She has been praised as brilliant, brave, even demure...because the text is so bold and she merely presents it as something that happened to her, without grandstanding an instant of it. I hope her students read it and understand it for the example that it, and Jen Knox, truly is.

I hope you read it too.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Existing in a perpetual anecdote...

That guilt I have for not calling my mother? - I get that same guilt for not emailing one of my favorite authors,  Lisette "Molly" Brodey. She's going to have so much to say, she'll properly explode if I wait too long.

Researching authors is not usually necessary. By the time we arrive here together, we've interacted enough to make these conversations easy. But, I do ask around for some amusing stories about a guest, when I know there might be one lurking. Asking around about Lisette, I got eighty-three replies.
Such as,
"Did she tell you about the time she was stuck in the elevator with...?"
And this one,
"She didn't say anything about *** did she...?"
"What has she told you now?"
One of the quickest was,
"I don't care what she says, I wasn't there...!"
I'm giving you the wrong idea - aren't I ? Hehehe.  Here, this one sums it all up the very best; explains L.B. with these simple words,
"Why are you interviewing her? Everybody knows her already...!"

Lisette IS a story. She is page after page of amusement and delight. I will stop what I'm doing to read her emails. She probably thinks that I wait at my computer all day just to catch them. ( I do. ) So, what about that last response to my snooping...why interview her? Naturally - she's too interesting.

Lisette Brodey is interesting doing nothing. Some of you are nodding your heads.... So far, I've liked everything she's ever said. She's the type of person who you look for soon as you enter the room - "Is Lisette here yet?" She is one end of a streaming conversation, forever. No, I'm not describing a busy-body. No I'm not describing a scatter-brain. Lisette is a writer. She's writerly. It's exactly the kind of conversation you want to have - and look for....admit it. Not one ordinary word or moment.

Oh, come on! Really! I'm not being rude or mean...NONE of you have ever deleted a single Lisette Brodey email....
Have you. Hahahaaahaaa!

She blogs with an alternate personality, just to get it all said. Knowing that a single Ms. Brodey couldn't satisfy us, she created Molly Hacker. (Soon to appear in her own book, "Molly Hacker is too picky!") I believe that to be a brilliant bit of conversational skill. A fictional character with a blog; a substitute Lisette. Almost satisfying enough.Note that I said almost.

What would possibly go one better than spending a moment with Lisette, or Molly? How about reading one of her books when she's not available? There go those nodding heads again.....  Lisette is serious about every thought in her head. She is triple serious about every thought she writes down. Like I said - writerly. Haven't read her? Shame on you. You know something similar to her style of writing though. I hope you hear what I hear. You know already what Lisette sounds like on the page.
Where have you heard it?

"Twelve Angry Men"  "Grapes of Wrath"  "Gone With the Wind"  "Death of a Salesman"  "A Streetcar Named Desire"  "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof"  "On The Waterfront"  "Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf"

You've noticed the serious tone now, haven't you? Some of you had a ping in your head loud as an alarmclock. A few, "My god..."s were just whispered.

Conversations in text that remain with you, and you can hear them now - moments of speech so pure they must be spoken from a stage or by a commanding actor. Characters who are alive in the most writerly way possible. They call it "stealing the scene" or "commanding the stage". No one makes a sound during the character's dialogue. In Crooked Moon, Lisette calls one of hers Frankie; Mary Frances to her brother. That character can stand and command the audience as any in the above mentioned classics. Frankie is real as you breathe, every time you hear her speak.

There is a moment in "Twelve Angry Men"; a story that Henry Fonda loved so well, he bought it, and produced the movie himself. The character is Lee J. Cobb's Juror #3, and the scene concerns the knife; the angle of the stabbing that made the murder. Watch that scene again. Then again. Henry Fonda is clearly taken back by the force of the acting from Lee Cobb. You can hear it in his voice. Cobb was the character, so completely, it couldn't have been captured in another take. The great Hank Fonda was reduced to a man in a damp shirt.

Here is the link to my review of this perfect story.

That is how Lisette writes characters. And, it's no fluke that I'm implying the strong comparison to a few classic plays....

Time to have our conversation with her...

How on earth do you find time for all the stuff you do?
Wow, that’s news to me. I wish I did find the time. I work a ridiculous number of hours trying to get everything done. Seven days a week. I almost never accomplish everything on my list, but I always make my deadlines for the things that must be done. Time, such an elusive little rascal; I so wish there were more of it.

Tell us about Molly.
Molly Hacker is the main character in my upcoming novel, Molly Hacker Is Too Picky! Since February 2011 (Presidents’ Day to be exact), I began blogging as Molly so that readers might get to know my snarky, picky, lovably, chatalicious character prior to the publication of her book.

A thirty-two-year-old reporter in the town of Swansea (an elegant, old-money bedroom community of New York), Molly is on a quest to find Mister Right, juggling men and work, and fending off self-serving matchmaking efforts by the town’s most visible socialite, Naomi Hall Benchley, whom Molly refers to as the “she-devil.”

Every Monday, Molly blogs about life at Every Wednesday, she puts on her reporter’s hat and interviews her creative peers. Molly is a busy girl. Personally, I could never find the time to do all that she does.

Squalor, New Mexico is your second-published book, but your first bit of writing?
Squalor, New Mexico is my first novel, but definitely not my first bit of writing. And it has absolutely nothing to do with New Mexico; rather, it takes place in East Coast suburbia in the ’70s. It is a coming-of-age story shrouded in mystery and tells the story of a family and their secrets through the eyes of Darla McKendrick, beginning from the time she was nine through sixteen.

While it’s classified as a YA novel, I never wrote it to be. For those curious about why the book has such an odd title, here’s a little something I wrote explaining it:
In the writing of this book, it was very important to me not to side with Darla or with her parents. Readers have had very different opinions about my characters, and that’s just the way I intended it.

I see you everywhere online. Is there a strategy, which you apply, or did you just dive in?
I knew my mother should never have chosen Ubiquitous for my middle name. I was certain I’d pay the price later, and as you see, I have.
Really, Joel? You see me everywhere? I try to do as much networking as I can, but my time is more and more limited. Strategy? Let’s see. Well, I try to be as visible on Twitter as I can. When it’s possible, I make an appearance several times a day, but I don’t stay on for a long time. I like to meet as many people as I can and if I only tweet at the same day every day, I’ll miss getting to know some wonderful tweeps out there.
When time permits, I enjoy reading the blogs and writings of my fellow authors/writers and helping some very deserving people to promote their work.

I also check into Facebook every day, both my personal and author page, but again, I don’t always spend a lot of time there. So, I guess my strategy would be to simply make the rounds and say hello to as many people as possible in the limited time I have. There are some fabulous sites/forums I would love to be involved with, but my time is ridiculously limited, so I just do the best I can. If authors spend too much time promoting, there will be nothing new to promote.

What about New York do you love most?
The energy. The electricity. The colors. The people (most of them). The lights. Central Park. The eclectic and the eccentric. The photo ops. The inspiration. The passion. There is no city that I love as much as New York. I feel so alive when I am there.

You have something cooking – career wise – besides being a millionairess author. Can we know what it is yet?
My main goal is to be a successful author. There are other endeavors that I engage in to survive, but nothing earth shattering, not yet. I throw things up against the wall every day in hopes that something will stick. When something does stick, I’ll be sure to let you know.

I’ve heard that you sing while you write.
I don’t know who you’re paying for information, but you should demand a refund. Actually, when I’m writing, I have to have complete silence. I often act out what my characters are doing, so if they’re singing, then perhaps I might be, too. But it’s very rare.

I can go down a list of things I love about Crooked Moon. Top of the list is your characterizations. They are flawless. What do YOU love most about that story?
I’m very humbled by your kind praise. Truly. The characters in Crooked Moon are also what I like best about the book. I often feel as if I can’t take credit for them. As I’m sure is the case with many writers, during the writing, it often feels as if we are mere transcriptionists, eavesdropping on a conversation and quickly typing everything we hear—verbatim.

Okay, so once in a while I did go in and change a word or two, but the characters in Crooked Moon came to life by themselves. There are passages of short narrative in the book that I spent days writing. Once in a while, those passages would come to me magically, too, but never the way that the characters’ dialogue did. I love the characters because they are angry, scared, lonely, needy, confused, and loving. And they have secrets.

You finally have some time to write... do you have an outline that you visit? Do you read some of the previous bit of work? Have you been planning and plotting for a bit before you sit down. Are you picky about your space, your environment? OR, do you just go at it like a mad woman?
The first thing I do when I’m about to write is edit the previous day’s work to get me into the writing zone and into the story. There are exceptions. If I have a scene that is burning a hole in my brain, I can’t worry about editing yesterday’s work. All I want to do is get it down so I won’t lose the idea or the moment.

I like to know what I’m going to do when I sit down to write. That said, I love it when my story takes me to unexpected places, and characters give me the shock of my life. That’s so cool. But I do write each scene to advance either the plot or the character. If I don’t understand what I’m writing, I don’t expect my readers will, either.

The cleaner my writing space, the happier I am. My current desk is a lot bigger than the one I used to have, but still not big enough. But, yes, I will do a major clutter reduction before I prepare to write. In fact, just talking about this has given me a huge urge to clean my desk…NOW. Pardon me, I’ll be right back.

Ryne Pearson and I both were sad to see the kitty photo replaced. Was that a rented cat, or is it a Californian now, too?
Yes, I know that Ryne was especially despondent when I took down the photo on Twitter of my holding the cat to my cheek. In fact, previously, Ryne had blatantly called me “Cat cheeker!” on Twitter. Now the picture is just me. The good news is that my cat is right here by my side. She is a native Californian, unlike me, and for the record, I never rent cats.

You’ve said before, “…moving is really important.” Explain that.
I’m learning so much about myself from reading your questions. So, I’ve said, “Moving is really important,” have I? Well, I don’t remember *saying it, but moving IS important. Moving one’s body throughout the day and getting exercise is vital to one’s mental and physical health. Moving from a city or a home you weren’t crazy about to one you prefer is also important. Writing novels that are moving is really important if you want to stir emotions in your readers. Moving a cat off your desk (or your cheek) so you can get to your work is important if you want to be productive. Moving truly is important. How wise that was of me to say, indeed. :-P
*Link goes to L.M. Stull's blog.

True or False – your nails are painted perfectly at this moment.
They are painted, yes. Perfectly–absolutely not.

Have you ever been haunted?
I’ve been haunted by memories and regrets, but ghosts, I don’t think so. That said, I do know of people who have been, and I believe I may have had encounters. But an out-and-out haunting, no.

What was it like, growing up in Philadelphia?
Well, first of all, I grew up in a suburb of Philadelphia, not in the city itself, so that is a very different reality. It was a nice place to grow up because it had all of the elements that one would want in a hometown. And it was ninety miles from New York. I liked that a lot.

How often do you jot down notes for your stories?
Every day. I write down lines, phrases, funny thoughts, character names, and anything I think I might ever use. I go nowhere without paper and pen.

Name the one book, which completely melted you emotionally.
There are so many books that I have absolutely loved, but nothing comes to mind that melted me emotionally. Not recently. I sobbed for forty-five minutes, unexpectedly, after seeing the film Life is Beautiful.

Before you published your first novel, you had actually been a playwright. Was that a job, or did you have dreams of that success? Those influences are suffused throughout Crooked Moon, and you deserve praise for that text.
It was such a different world back then. I wasn’t really a playwright. I thought I might want to be one. I had one play that I spent years sending to theaters all over the country with no luck. This particular play began as a short story that I wrote at age seventeen. I never finished the story, but I turned it into a one-act play eight years later. I then gave the play to the director of Temple University’s theater. (This was MANY years ago!) He loved the characters and really “got” them, but said the play needed to be a two-act. He was right.

So I turned it in to a two-act play, but he never found time to read it. The characters are strong, quirky people with flaws and secrets, and I’m going to novelize the play and turn it into my fourth novel. I’m in the midst of expanding the story and am very excited to begin writing this soon.

In collaboration with two others, I wrote the book for a full-length musical comedy. I also wrote four screenplays but never did anything with them.

What is your favorite play?
I love Long Day’s Journey Into Night by Eugene O’Neill, and I really love a lot of musicals. Fiddler on the Roof really touches me, and I’ve seen it on stage five times, including once with Zero Mostel. And I had orchestra seats. I love Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie, too.

Shakespeare or Stephen King?
Eugene O’Neill and Neil Simon. Charles Dickens and Thomas Wolfe.

Should new authors query to agents now, or should they go directly to self-publishing?
This is an extremely personal decision. I don’t think there is any one answer. The good news is that for writers who want to query agents, it can be done and over with SO much more quickly than it used to be — in most cases. I remember the days when I often had to print fifty pages (or the entire manuscript) of my novel, print out every letter, pay for postage to each agent, and then pay for the postage on the return envelope. This was extraordinarily time consuming and expensive.

Now, authors can be rejected much more quickly. Seriously, though, because the process is far more streamlined with email submissions, an author can always try his or her luck with agents and, if that doesn’t prove successful, make the decision to self-publish without wasting years in the process. As I write this interview, I saw an article today that said that one in six Americans own an eReader. I remember just a few years ago when I knew ONE person with a Kindle. The changes in that area are staggering. The world of publishing is changing and evolving.

I would just advise each author to do his or her homework, study the options, and make the decision that feels best for him or her.

I’m giving you a fantasy trip – expenses paid – anywhere in the world. Where are you going?
That all depends on who is going with me. I’m tired. I think I would go to some place incredibly beautiful where I could relax. Peru, Fiji, Tahiti. Oh, it’s hard to choose, especially because I really love the hustle and bustle of cities, too. And if I don’t say Melbourne, Australia, my friends Lisa and Ross will be really hurt. So let me add that city to the list.

In Hamlet, the prince takes a simple prop and makes a whole man of it. “Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio…” In Crooked Moon, you took a simple house, and filled it with Aunt Emily. We never meet her, but she is real as Yorick. Does that surprise you? hear a reader was touched in that way?
Yes, it does. I am so touched by the compliment that it’s almost hard for me to believe. I had a very good sense of Callie’s aunt Emily and wanted her spirit to shine through, but it never occurred to me that a reader would notice her in that way. Thank you. That is truly praise supreme, and coming from such a gorgeous writer as yourself, even more special.

Who is leading you now, Lisette Brodey, or Molly Hacker? What comes next?
Molly is leading at the moment, but I’m going to be passing her soon. As soon as her book is published, I’ll not only be writing novel #4 that I spoke about, but I’ll be knee deep in other projects as well.

Give me an answer, and I’ll write the question….
No one was more astonished than I was when I made the decision. I remember the day clearly. At 8:30 a.m., the sky opened up, and a torrential rain fell on the city. I had been mulling over my decision for months, and now there was an obscene amount of rain falling, and I was still clueless about what to do. I remember turning on the radio on my way to the appointment, and the first song I heard was “Cry Me a River,” by Barbra Streisand. I really thought the cosmos was playing a trick on me, teasing me, but somehow, the raw emotion in that song helped me to come to my decision, shocking myself and everyone involved. I wish I had a more definitive answer for you, Joel, but that’s how it all went down.
Question is: Which City has the best pizza: New York City, or Hollywood?

Thanks so much for having me. You’ve been a gracious and patient host. I really enjoyed doing this interview.

Thank you, Lisette. We seem to share the race to get the most done in the least time possible. You might be winning.

Pick one of Lisette's books, folks, and get to know this lady. She will amaze and entertain you.
Watch for her novel, Molly Hacker Is Too Picky! this fall. If you strike up a conversation with her, and she tells you what her fourth novel is about...drop me a note. I'm dying to know.