#Pitchwars Bio

Ahem. I’m feeling a little left out. And someone demanding these bios is a prospective mentor, so I am hereby COMPLYING.

A Brief Bio of Me:

Category: Places I have lived.
East coast (Delaware!), West coast (California, Oregon), the Midwest (Ohio, West Virginia).

Category: Hobbies, skills.
Words. Doing things left-handed, but never a circular saw. Unicycle riding (yes, indeed, I was that weird kid) Killer sudoku. DIY art and craft. Scrabble. Film photography. Cooking cicadas–well once, since you have to wait 17 years to make the recipe again. Comic-making.

Category: Jobs I have had.
Golf pro shop clerk, gherkin packer at a Vlasic plant, telemarketer selling some bullshit scammy “product”, many miserable office positions, temping, microfilming, singing waitress (bad idea, job giver of yore) paper-pushing.
Job I have now: small business owner. Pros: you are the boss. Cons: you are the boss.

Category: Writing.
Member of: SCBWI (DE/MD/WV), WV Writers Association, one awesome RL critique group, Scribophile.
How I write: in a super-stripped-down freeware program called Rough Draft. Don’t even think about curly quotes or color-coding shit.
When: 6:00-7:30 a.m. weekdays, plus Saturdays.
What: my current manuscript & pitchwars sub is about my fifth or sixth completed novel. I started on NaNoWriMo in 2004, and man, was there a lot to learn about how to write a novel. I’m almost there.
The current MS is the second with this main character; the first book I wrote was flawed but probably funnier. I am in the early stage of another novel with Penny, aka Queasy, the existentially nauseated teen who only wants to know what’s really going on. I wrote a pretty lame query; the novel is serious and somewhat complex, running on the themes of family pathologies, loss, big mysteries, first love, how bad people can sometimes be good, and a number of other things. Plus a lot of things, both literal and figurative, are lost or disappear during the story.

Category: Music.
Music I listen to now: Alison Moorer, Gillian Welch, Devotchka, Rasputina, Wilco, The Mountain Goats, The Drive-By Truckers. I know, I can’t keep up. These kids with their new music.

Category: Reading.
Favorite books. All of them, Katie.
Book I hated. None.
Influential writers (for my writing): Raymond Carver, Grace Paley, Kurt Vonnegut, Tillie Olsen. I spent decades reading short stories. Not that it always shows.
Mysteriously compelling ones: Michael Kohlhaus (Kleist), Left Hand of Darkness (LeGuin), The Edible Woman (Atwood), Jane Eyre, Berton Roeche essays. Honestly, I’d have to write an book about what I love about these works and authors.

And that’s it. My blog goes back many years, to my mommyblog days. You can read it. I ported it from blogger a couple years back and some posts and all the pictures are lost.

2013 Books, to Date

2013 Books, to Date I don’t even know where I got that list from March, but here is my official refrigerator list so far.
1. Flight Behavior, Kingsolver
2. Haunting of Hill House, Jackson
3. Ellen Foster, Gibbons
4. Maniac Megee, Spinelli
5. The Wooden Sea, Carroll
6. Feed, Anderson
7. The Peculiar Sadness of Lemon Cake, Bender
8. The Music of Chance, Auster
9. Republic of Love, Shields
1000 Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, Mitchell cannot get into this though I loved Cloud Atlas and others
10. Gone Girl, Flynn
11. Summerland, Chabon
12. Fault Lines, Huston
13. Goodnight Nobody, Weiner
14. Independence Day, Ford
15. Gone Baby Gone, Lehane
16. How Fiction Works, Wood
17. The Doctor’s Wife, Braddon
18. The Art of Detection, King
19. How Not to Write a Novel, Mittlemark, Newman
20. Absolute Fear, Jackson
21. Grace Paley Collected Stories
22. Lady Audley’s Secret, Braddon
23. Gun Machine, Ellis
24. A Grave Talent, King
25. Bird By Bird, Lamott
26. How to Write Killer Fiction, Wheat
27. Careless in Red, George
A bit light on history & science (as in NONE) but I did read Plato and a Platypus and I’ve got Made to Stick on my reading table. Also, Reinventing Eve, Shrub, and the autobiography of Damien Echols (sp?) of the West Memphis 3. That’s four more for 31 to date. I’m not sure I’m going to make it to 50 this year either.

This blog is such a lonesome place.

Here’s some fresh air
New (to me):
Site: Feministing I especially enjoy the Target: Women videos.

Music: Rasputina Oh Perilous World
It makes me smile when I listen to it.

Author: Jared Diamond
Guns, Germs and Steel (so many things are illuminated by these theories)
I suppose it’s Collapse that has a chapter on the corporate behavior of mining, coal & oil companies. He’s pretty far off the mark in regards to the coal companies.

I would talk about Joe Manchin’s speech at the Democratic convention but I missed it. I’m happy about Biden as the VP pick, although as a Delaware native, I might be a little partial. HRC neatly flipped off the Dem. Clinton-haters by being so awesome (I know, I know, she’s still secretly an evil, power-ravenous bitch) on her two nights. I’m also glad I missed Jay Rockefeller’s speech. I just don’t like that man.

Oh and here’s a local guy I’m supporting: Kim Wolfe for Mayor This town is so ready for some new people and new ideas.