• My Great Gray Reading Chair – Don Draper replaces Mr. Carson I’m pleased to report that I’ve finally replaced my beloved old reading chair, which my then-boyfriend and I purchased on sale from Macy’s for our first San Francisco apartment back in 1999. It is a well-used chair that served us lovingly, kind of like Mr. Carson, but, like Mr. Carson,  it long ago began showing […]
  • On titles As some of you may already know, the working title for The Year of Fog was Ocean Beach. My publisher made it clear that there was no way the novel was going to come out with the title “Ocean Beach.” For one thing, my editor and the marketing folks found it redundant–as in, well, okay, yes, […]
  • I am the Common Reader: Virginia Woolf on pleasure, reading, & the survival of literature Despite her knowledge of Greek and her voracious reading of the classics, Virginia Woolf considered herself a self-taught reader. As a woman, she had been denied the illustrious Oxford education that the men in her family enjoyed. As it turns out, her lack of affectation, her insistence on taking pleasure in reading, is what makes her […]
  • Best website plugins for authors & writers Perhaps the number one way to engage with visitors to your website is to include a highly visible opt-in form that allows readers to sign up for updates or a newsletter. Blogging experts say that email lists beat out every form of social networking. Why? When someone follows you on twitter, they make no commitment. They […]
  • Better in French Why does everything sound better in French? I came across this charming youtube video of a French reader reviewing Le R’eve D’Amanda Ruth, the French translation of Dream of the Blue Room. (I love the French title, which translates as The Dream of Amanda Ruth.) My high school and college English isn’t intact enough for […]
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