So Amazon has published my little thriller, BYLINE. My East Coast writing buddy Susan has posted a five-star review, the friends have expressed support and congratulations, and a few copies have been sold.
After reading and re-reading manuscript, proofs and revised proofs, I am a little tired of my own opus, especially when I find typos and things I could have done better. It’s not as if I thought I was writing about eternal verities or anything, but I thought I’d be more thrilled to have my shout-out living its own life.
Twice this week I’ve talked with a reporter from our local newspaper, which will be running an interview about the book this week. She is young and pretty, but she has written for the paper 26 years, she said. Both of us have always loved to write and have tried pretty much every way of putting words together.
She wanted to know how I jumped back and forth between playing the piano and trying to write news stories, poetry and fiction. I had to think about it, because certainly it seems that I flit from one thing to another, halfway between doing paying work and indulging myself.
In newswriting and music program notes, I thought, you tell about something. In fiction, of course, you try to show rather than tell. In poetry, you play with the musicality of language, and in music you deal with the musicality itself. “But what do they have in common?” she asked, knowing, of course, the answer.
Sue and I correspond almost daily about our current writing projects, but it was lovely to sit at the table and chat with someone else who thinks wordsmithing is worth while.
The reporter and I reached a comfortable silence. We looked out the window at Montara Mountain. “It’s great living near the ocean,” she said, “but I have to confess that I’m really a mountain kind of girl.”