Previous month:
January 2007
Next month:
March 2007

The Writing Life

Well, after years of not broadcasting anything about my personal life
and hardly even having an author photo, now my personal writing life (as opposed to my personal personal life) is like all over the web!

Here is Cecil Castelluci's You Tube video "I Heart YA" -- see me, John Green, Cecil, Maureen Johnson, Cassie Claire and Holly Black "write".
Or not.
And here's Maureen posting on the same day about our activities.

Book Shelving Meme

Little Willow's Bookshelving meme -- can't resist!

How do you organize your books? By genre, by last name, by title, by publication date?
By category and projects -- then within fiction, by century.
So: cookbooks, picture books, reference books, parenting, travel, grad school, amusement parks, social criticism, physical culture , children's literature and history, fairy tale collections.
Then Adult fiction by 18th cent, 19th, 20th/contemporary. Teen is a separate section.

Do you have a shelf reserved for your favorite books and/or authors?
No, they're just chunked in. But I have two separate shelves for books I have not read yet.

What is the first title and author on your bookshelf?
That assumes I have one bookshelf rather than (quick count) nine.
First one on the first I cast my eye on: The Pecking Order, by Dalton Conley.

What is the last title and author on your bookshelf?

Again, hello? There are so many shelves! But on the same one I looked at before: Designing Disney's Theme Parks.

What genre dominates your collection?
General Fiction -- 19th century and contemporary. (I pretty much skip the mid-twentieth century)

Which author is the most represented? (You own the most number of books by . . . )
Charles Dickens.

You own all of the books written by . . .
Jane Austen. And no one else! I was quite surprised to realize this. There are authors I have read to completion or near-completion (Iris Murdoch for example) but I give their books away when I find a friend who needs to read them.

You own the entire series of . . .
I don't! I'm not a series gal, I guess, at least not to the extent of completion. However, here are some series on my shelves in partial form: Piers Anthony's Xanth; Meg Cabot's Princess Diaries; P.G. Wodehouse's Jeeves & Wooster; Ian Fleming's James Bond.

ALAN bookclub

Gacked from here, there and everywhere:

Join the ALAN Book Club and become part of a new online group of readers unlike any other on the whole planet! Here’s how it works.
Once a month, the third Wednesday,
9 PM Eastern Time,
we will meet online in the ALAN Chat area to discuss a particular book.
The following Wednesday at 9PM, we will have the pleasure of hosting the author of the novel we discussed for a full-blown Q&A session.

So what do you need to do to join in this fun?
First, read the novel on tap for each month.
Second, send one question for discussion to the moderator at least the day before the scheduled chat. Third, log in before 9PM to make sure you can solve any technical difficulties. Fourth, join the chat at the appointed time and see what happens!"

You can join the bookchat by clicking here. No password is required for log-in! And the first book is SANDPIPER.

China Dolls

Chinadollscover2CHINA DOLLS by Michelle Yu and Blossom Kan just came out, and its authors are on the GCC with me. They are cousins!

If you came to my novel Fly on the Wall because you were interested in books that represent the experiences of Asian American women -- this is the (adult) book for you. They wrote CHINA DOLLS because "not only are there the stereotypes of the Asian woman as this docile, submissive person, but these women have to deal with the expectations of their own culture that they will be the perfect wife, mother and supporting cast for their future husbands. So, as if dating in and of itself isn't hard enough, these girls have to contend with these false images perpetuated by both Asians and non-Asians alike."

Here's the pitch:
With the traditions and family closeness of The Joy Luck Club
and the sass, girl friendships and humor of Sex and the City,
comes a novel about three Asian-American women balancing
and one another in New York City.
Read an excerpt here. And check out the authors' joint blog.

Booklist says: “Yu and Kan's heroines are eminently likable, and their adventures in love
and on the job ring true.”

So -- they stopped off and took
The Fly on the Wall Survey
questions by me, answers by Michelle Yu and Blossom Kan
(but really more Blossom)

1) If you could be a fly on the wall somewhere, anywhere – where?

We would want to be in the writer's breakdown room of any TV show.

2) If you could have one superpower, what?

I would want to be indestructible like Claire on "Heroes; Michelle would want to fly like Nathan.

3) What is your superhero name? Why?

Michelle's is Yucatan (because her last name is Yu). Mine is BK Broiler (my friends think I get pretty fiery sometimes).

4) Who is your favorite superhero?

My favorite superhero is Wolverine. Michelle's is She-Ra.

6) Recommend us a superhero movie.

X-Men without a doubt!

7) If you could turn in to any animal, what? Why?

I would say a lion (because of the whole "King of the Jungle" bit, plus I'm a Leo). Michelle would want to be a fox.

8) Do you (or have you ever) read comic books? What? When?

Michelle hasn't but I read X-Men comics - the stories of these young outsiders trying to deal with their mutant superpowers AND puberty is an affecting one and like I said, I love Wolverine!

Hank Green's Survey

YA novelist John Green's brother Hank (Hi, Hank!) suggests we viewers of Brotherhood 2.0 fill out his survey. So here it is!

1. Your name:
E. Lockhart.
Or maybe not.

2. Your Web page:

3. What have you been up to this past year (please be as detailed as possible, because we actually want to know)?
writing novels. parenting. cooking dinners for lots of people. trying to be healthier. possibly succeeding. yoga. trying to be a good person. avoiding a nervous breakdown. listening to cheesy musical theater songs without shame. making piñatas out of papier mache.

4 How much longer do you think you'll be doing what you're doing?
years and years.
only maybe not the piñatas.

5 Why are you doing it?
writing books? it earns me money and it makes me laugh both at once. I have stories to tell.
the making of piñatas is only intermittent, and it amuses many people I love, including myself

6 What do you want to be doing?
Oh, I am doing it.
I just wish I had more time off from doing it.

7 What's next in your life?
I am spending 5 weeks in the country this July.
Tomorrow I am writing in a coffee shop with John and Maureen.

8 How You Doin'?

9 What's the best book you read this year?
Very hard to answer. This year is also quite young. Oh, you know what is AWESOME and so short that none of you should spend a single nother day without reading it? Wolves, by Emily Gravett, winner of the 2006 Kate Greenaway medal.

10 Describe a perfect day?
sleep late. yoga class. dim sum with my family. nap. go to the beach and read a mystery novel. Then have a dinner party.

11 Assuming that all things come to an do you think humans will go extinct?
from a surfeit of television

12 How are you feeling about kids these days?
those cheeks! those cheeks!

13 (- In this space, compose your own question, and answer it -)
What book do you have coming out in May?
Dramarama, thank you for asking!

14 Ambrozzo tastes better than anything else, what does ambrozzo taste like?
Affedelice cheese on olive bread.

15 If you were a cliché, what cliché would you be?
You talk too much, homegirl, you never shut UP.

16 What is your least favorite part of any given day?
Clean up.

17 Do you enjoy science fiction?
On film, not in novels.

18 Cheese or Chocolate?
Cheese cheese cheese, oh, cheese, I love you

19 Where would you live if you could live anywhere?
Cape Cod, perhaps. But being a New Yorker, I have constant and exceedingly vivid fantasies of living elsewhere – and I never go.

20 What was your first concert?
Oingo Boingo at the Seattle Center

21 If you could start a business that would be instantly successful, what kind of business would it be?
A meat-substitute that would be so good we could eliminate industrialized farming and which would spur a return to local, community-based agriculture and the humane treatment of animals in our society.
I also might like to have a little cookie shop.

22 Invisibility or Time Travel?
Time travel, of course. I love that book The Thyme Garden by Edward Eager.

23 What's wrong with the world?
It's so hard to help people who need help.

Higher Power of Lucky

Go check out the As If! blog on the subject of how one anatomically correct, non-slang word (scrotum) is making teachers and librarians consider keeping a book out of classrooms and libraries -- and that book s The Higher Power of Lucky, chosen by the American Library Association as the best book of the year written for children, and honored with the Newbery award.

It is not a dirty word, people. It is just a body part that almost half the population has. If a child old enough to read the book doesn't know the name for his own bits, that's already making me sad.

And the idea that schools and libraries would not want children to be able to read the best book of the year because they're scared to name the bits of human beings (once! nonsexually!) -- well, I really do think those people are making the wrong decision.

oh, it's prom time NOW

Okay, I think I mistakenly said that 21 proms was coming out in MAY -- but it's not. It's supposedly coming out in March, and you can buy it already in lots of stores! It's out, babies, and I am so proud to be in it!

"These were some of the best short stories I can ever remember reading! "

Me! Cecily von Zegisar! Libba Bray! Sarah Mlynowski! David Levithan! Jacqueline Woodson! Holly Black! Daniel Ehrehnhaft! Ned Vizzini! John Green! and that's only a few. This is such an awesome line up of writers.