Peevish Pen

Ruminations on reading, writing, rural living, retirement, aging—and sometimes cats. And maybe a border collie or other critters.

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Location: Rural Virginia, United States

I'm an elderly retired teacher who writes. Among my books are Ferradiddledumday (Appalachian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story), Stuck (middle grade paranormal novel), Patches on the Same Quilt (novel set in Franklin County, VA), Them That Go (an Appalachian novel), Miracle of the Concrete Jesus & Other Stories, and several Kindle ebooks.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Cup of Comfort for Writers

Yesterday, I received an email from a publicist for Adams Media, the publisher who does the Cup of Comfort series.

Now I’m starting to get pumped about my essay, “Out of the Fog,” appearing in a Cup of Comfort for Writers. The publicist's email provided info about how I could promote the book if I wanted to (and I do want to). I’d already planned to read my selection at the Friday night coffeehouse that constitutes half of this year’s Franklin County Bookfest. (I’d have blogged about this event already, but we haven’t selected a name for it yet.)

“Out of the Fog” is creative non-fiction. That is, I combined several classroom visits I’ve done into one in which I explain to a class how I write. For those of you who already know how I write—yes, I included the desk cats, the border collie under the desk, the Peaks of Otter that I see through my study window, my faithful eMac, my truck, my iBook, my general disorganization, my un-writerly appearance when I visit schools, etc. I put all that in.

“Out of the Fog” started as a contest essay titled, “How I Write.” While its first incarnation placed second in the 2005 Wytheville Chatauqua contest and a rewrite won the 2005 first tier of the Virginia Writer’s Club contest, it didn’t do diddly at the statewide VWC level. Only an honorable mention. Consequently I rewrote the whole thing again, this time changing the essay's focus and expanding it to include the classroom visit. I guess the third time’s the charm.

When I visit English classes, I advise students to keep rewriting and revising. "Out of the Fog" is a good example of what happens when an author keeps rewriting. (See, kids—I didn't lie!) With a little work, what was once a merely OK essay becomes worthy of publication. (Note to my faithful blog readers: If you want to read the revised version, you'll have to buy the book.)

A few weeks ago, I got my check from the publishers. In July, I’m supposed to get my author’s copy. This morning I got the jpeg of the cover. The cover design has my favorite shade of blue on the cup. Is that cool, or what?

I spent most of yesterday afternoon looking up the addresses of newspapers that might be interested so Adams Media could send them complimentary copies and press releases to entice them to interview me. Last night I sent off my list.

Now, I've got to set up some signings.



Blogger CountryDew said...

Congratulations. That is very impressive. Good for you!

12:24 PM  
Blogger Jenny Rough said...

I look forward to reading Out of the Fog. I'm another COC for writers gal in MD...maybe we're close enough to do a joint event?

1:15 PM  

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