8 October 2010

Book tour kicks off in Vt. Izzy is shameless

Great crowd for "Rose" at Northshire

October 8, 2010 – Izzy and I kicked off the "Rose In A Storm" book tour at Northshire Books in Manchester, Vt., last night and drew an SRO crowd. Great questions, focusing on how a dog things, what I might say to inspire boys to write more (I said we should stop calling them stupid and dumping on their culture) and why did I leave urban life to go to a farm in Upstate, N.Y., and an "all-encompassing life with animals." Great questions. I said I didn't move to the farm for the love of animals, and that I didn't write about animals from the perspective of an animal lover. As a writer, I find the emotional geography between people and animals fascinating and under-portrayed, and so it has been very fertile for me.

We talked about life with Rose, the structure of the novel, and I also mentioned that I have two books scheduled for publication – a collection of short stories called "Dancing Dogs," and a book on grieving for animals called "Going Home: Help When Animals Die," due out next Fall.

Izzy worked the crowd with his usual skill, focusing on blondes.

I loved the questions and the crowd – a different kind of crowd, I think – and we went for two hours. I am getting a handle on how to talk about this week and can't wait to move further along on the tour. I'll get my chance shortly. At 2 p.m. Sunday, we will be at Borders Books in Saratoga Springs. Then next week, I go to Washington and Northern Virginia, to Borders to do a signing and talk with Rita Mae Brown, which will be a great treat for me. We sold a bunch of Family Farm notecards, and thanks to Christine Nemec of Redux for coming. The "Judy" notecard series is in, and will be up on the Redux site shortly. I'm taking some of these cards on the tour. They sell for $16, to benefit family farms.

Tag Sale

Michelle's pies and apple crisp

Michelle Rouse made a bunch of apple pies and apple crisps for her tag sale at Church on Sunday. She said Ed is tired and hinted that she wanted him to rest on Sunday – to "veg out" – and I got the hint and said I'd be back next week. Ed would never tell me that, so I'm glad I asked Michelle. Her pies looked amazing.

On Big Valley Farm

Corn is chopped, barn is cleaned

Dropped by to see Ed Rouse today and bring him a copy of my novel (I don't think he will read it, but Michelle will). He had finished chopping corn, was cleaning out the barns, was fixing a tractor, had been up all night with a sick cow. Nother day at Big Valley Farm. "Where you been?" he asked. I said hanging around with him makes me very happy to be a writer. He said he wasn't coming to the reading tonight at Northshire, but would catch me later at a local bookstore in Cambridge. Good man.

Fall, fading

Fall, fading

Got voice troubles already. Tonight, at Northshire Books, artist and gallery owner Christine Nemec will join me and she will be selling the Family Farm notecards for $16. Part of the proceeds to benefit farm aid and Ed Rouse would like some of the money to go to the American Cancer Society as well. Excited to get the tour going.

Creativity. Let the light shine

Let it shine

I believe we all have an inner creative spirit that often wants to come out, but can't. We don't think anybody wants to hear our stories, see our pictures or paintings, read our poems. I think we all have stories to tell and they are important. Let the inner light out and put your ideas out into the world, where they can make their own way. We never know if people will like what we create or not. All we can do is muster the inner faith and courage to do our work and put it out there. The Studio Barn embodies that idea for me.