It’s so nice to be able to accept my invitation to join the #WIPBlogTour from my writer friend Jane Rosenberg LaForge (@JaneRLaForge), author of An Unsuitable Princess. Most invitations ask so much more of me, like the invitations to send money to UCLA, where I did time some years back, or the invitations to buy my child a 16-week tutoring session at 10 percent off thousands of dollars. (If I act now.)
I do have a few works in progress, though I think of progress in a very Zen way, as in it’s sort of happening but also requires that I just close my eyes seriously for a lengthy amount of time, and try to focus on nothing at all. It’s really helpful to be Zen about it instead of metaphorically hitting your head against the wall (or actually doing so).
’ve completed my third novel, *Your Actual Life May Vary, at long last (and several times, too). It’s a darkly comic look at suburbia, at finding the perfect community here in the Golden State, one that’s homey and welcoming and familiar, even though no one you actually know lives there. My characters encounter eerie theme parks, toxins, big-box stores, some ugly California history, child stealing, and new communities built on land that basically tends to give way. I like to think of it as Little Children meets Little Miss Sunshine, with a neon moment or two of The Simpsons thrown in. *Your Actual Life May Vary is in search of its forever home with an independent publisher, after having repelled a ridiculously large number of NY editors, but (I like to think) in a really good way.
Next up: The Girl in the ’67 Beetle returns me to the lighter, funnier, no-head-injuries-required days of my first two novels (Life a la Mode and Latte Lessons), and follows a writer/illustrator charged with updating Goldilocks for the next generation while facing a choice-of-three situation of her own: you know, one person of interest is too old, one is too young, and one is “just right.” But just right isn’t necessarily what the new Goldilocks wants right now. Because basically, who needs another silly Goldilocks story? No one, unless this Goldi’s working on the something serious like the Goldilocks Planet paradigm: the search for an ideal planet identical to ours, one that’s just right. And maybe a Nobel or two. It’s Geek Goldi, and it’s about time.
After that I’m going to work on Gesundheit, a novel about a hapless allergist who discovers a cure for allergies but finds himself up against drug companies large and small, and an ex medical partner/wife, who doesn’t want him to succeed. He’ll also become the new guru of the West, or at least of Berkeley, where his practice is. A guru for the sneezy and runny-eyed. No co-pay required.
I’m happy to nominate three more writers to blog their works in progress at #WIPBlogTour: Jill Yesko, @Jillyesko, author of the gritty-grimy Baltimore-set Murder in the Dog Park and God Spelled Backward; Rich Klin, @RIJAKL, author of Something to Say: Thoughts on Art and Politics in America (with photographs by Lily Prince); and @RickMumma, whose latest novel, Fire Answers Fire, is a sharp mystery available for your e-reader.