Web diary: 'One Author's Life'


Miss Dreamsville: An American Novel?

August 23, 2013

Literary, Historical, Women's, and Southern Fiction: My novel, Miss Dreamsville, has been described as all of the above. I don't mind what it's called as long as people read it, yet looking at how reviewers and readers categorize fiction is intriguing. (more…)

Are Writers Superstitious?

August 5, 2013

Who me, superstitious? Just because I sign all of my book contracts on my "good luck" clipboard? I prefer to think of it as a tradition but, yes, it is in fact a superstition. The story behind my special clipboard is this: I signed my first book contract on it, as did the Delany Sisters, and look how that turned out! More than two years on the New York Times bestseller list. You don't want to mess with that kind of karma, so ever since, I sign contracts on it. Not that it's the prettiest clipboard around - it's made of wood, with no metal parts, which, my dad says, means it was probably made during World War Two. It was one of several clipboards my dad had hanging around his home office, and when I was in junior high and for some reason needed one, the humble clipboard with the scuffed edges was assigned to me. A more common superstition among writers is that many (myself included) will not talk about a pending deal, no matter how juicy. My friend Audrey and I are in absolute agreement that we must speak only in hushed voices, if at all, about something great that may or may not happen, lest we jinx it. And then there's my friend Kaya: for good luck, she writes her novels while wearing a pair of wool socks knitted by a librarian. I admit that I am somewhat relieved to hear of other writers' superstitions. Makes my magical clipboard seem a little less peculiar!