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Friday, November 26, 2010

Literary Weavings

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Hello dear readers!

Hope your Thanksgiving was full of good company and good food-- ours was!  I just got back from an action-packed trip to Madison, WI, and then Orlando for two fun conferences... more about those later....  Now, I want to share this very cool literary weaving activity that superstar reading specialist Sandra Kowalczyk used with her middle schoolers while reading Red Glass.

Me with the weaving on display:



Here's Sandy's description:

Inspired by woven textiles and carpets from Oaxaca, Mexico, where the novel Red Glass takes place, students collaboratively created a literary weaving.  Each student designed a strip of repeated symbols, colors, and quotes from  Red Glass to capture significant images and themes from the book.  Then students wove the strips together.

Close up:


Pics of Oaxacan women weaving (photos taken by Sandy on a trip she took to Oaxaca) along with a photo of the students actually weaving their strips together:


Sandy and me in front of another amazingly creative display she made with her class (this one features all my books!):


Here's another shot so you can see the parts covered up in the last pic.  Some of the absolutely delightful touches include The Indigo Notebook and The Ruby Notebook in spiral bound notebook form, plane tickets with Zeeta's flight info, first from Thailand to Ecuador, then from Ecuador to France!), a little pretend Rumi book (with a Rumi quote inside!), maps galore, Zeeta's passport, an Andean alpaca sweater, photos from Ecucador... Needless to say, I was completely blown away!

*Remember, you can click on the images to enlarge them!*

I love, love, love, when teachers and librarians do such creative things with my books.  It's such a joy for me!  Sandy's enthusiasm rubbed off on everyone at the school (Patrick Marsh Middle School in Wisconsin)... Her wonderful colleagues and students were bursting with great energy.  During the two (!) delicious Mexican-themed lunches they served me, I heard kids' and teachers' great comments and questions on Red Glass, The Indigo Notebook,  and Star in the Forest. Thank you guys!  I loved hearing about your connections to my books!

xoxo
Laura

Monday, November 15, 2010

My Horoscope...

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Hello dearest readers!
 
I wanted to share with you my uncannily accurate horoscope from the Lincoln Journal Star that my parents picked up as they were driving here (Colorado) from Michigan last week:

Cancer (June 22-July 22)-- You almost see the finish line for a writing project.  The editing process presents difficulties.  Enlist the help of an older, more objective person.

Hehehe!  Needless to say, the writing project is THE JADE NOTEBOOK, which I must finish by Jan 1.  And um, yes... "presents difficulties" is a nice way of saying "is utterly grueling at the moment."  And the older person?  My mom, of course.  In my NaNoWriMo-esque plan, I'm trying to get this latest revision to her by the end of November.

Speaking of which, thanks to everyone who came to my novel-writing tips event at Barnes and Noble yesterday-- you guys were great!  I have to say, you probably inspired me more than I inspired you.  (And as you probably saw on the handout, I meant to hold a fun little contest to come up with a snazzier title for the workshop, but I got caught up in the excitement of talking to you all, and it completely slipped my mind... sorry!)

A nice bit o' news: THE RUBY NOTEBOOK just got a Flamingnet Top Choices Award!  This is a really cool teen blogger award... all the reviews are done by teens, who designate their favorites as Top Choices.


Here's a piece of the review:

"The Ruby Notebook is a lovely tale of a girl who is lost in her own world, as most of us are. The reader follows Zeeta on her path to finding herself, perhaps learning more about themselves as well. The concept of the book lies in the mysteries of the fountain of eternal youth, which I find interesting. It was very easy for me to get immersed in the book and not want to stop reading. There were many plots and subplots that were all very well tied up by the end of the novel, but they kept you guessing the entire way through. I would recommend it to anyone who loves both mystery and romance genres." -- a 17-year-old Flamingnet Reviewer

Thanks-- I'm honored-- it's always extra-meaningful to get a good review from a teen reviewer! 

Speaking of reviews, the Denver Post featured THE RUBY NOTEBOOK in the Sunday book section.  Here's a quote from reviewer Claire Martin: "As always, Resau's narrative is lush, evoking Provence with grace and precision."  (Merci,  Claire!)  She also reviewed my friend Lauren Myracle's latest book, Violet in Bloom.... it sounds really good-- I'm eager to read it. 

On a side note, Lauren and I will be at the NCTE conference (ALAN workshops) in *Orlando* next week, along with a bunch of breath-takingly amazing authors. So thrilling to be in their midst... Just before that conference, I'll be at the International Children's Literature Festival in Madison, also in the midst of fabulous authors. 

And now, if you'll excuse me, I must do some laundry so I have something to wear on these upcoming adventures.  (When I walked out the door with Lil Dude to go to preschool this morning, he said, "Mommy, you can't leave the house in your pajamas."  I ushered him out, assuring him that it's our secret... if I wear a big coat, no one has to know I slept in these clothes...)

Okay, thanks for reading! 

xo
Laura

Monday, November 1, 2010

Internet-less Interlude

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Hello everyone!

Our DSL was down from Fri through this morning (Monday), which was interesting... on one hand, it was liberating, and made me really productive-- revising more of The Jade Notebook, playing more with Lil Dude, cleaning my fridge, scrubbing the floors, organizing our basement... Periodically, I thought, hmmm, if we had Internet access at the moment, I wouldn't be doing any of this stuff-- I'd be twiddling my time away online instead.  And mentally, I felt calmer, more focused-- just a relaxed state of mind.

On the other hand, our Internet-less state was pretty darn inconvenient-- I was clueless about event schedules, like the Day of the Dead festivities and movies and things like that.  But overall, it was a good thing. Ian and I decided to do more Internet fasts... maybe even every weekend (which is, I admit, a little scary to me!) 

On a different note, here's a pic of me and my welcoming crew for the Telluride visit I did a couple weeks ago.  These super-sweet girls made me feel very, very welcome!  Thank you!


I'm guessing some of you are doing NaNoWriMo (national novel writing month), which began today.  I'm doing my own version of it, as a matter of fact.  I'm on a strict schedule of revising The Jade Notebook-- a chapter a day-- so I can get it critiqued by my writers group and Mom in December, and have it in reasonably decent shape (*hope hope hope*) by early January, when it's due to my editor.  So far, so good-- got my chapter done! 

For you Fort Collinites, I'm doing a signing/workshop in celebration of NaNoWriMo -- Ten Novel-Writing Tips.  (I need to learn to come up with snazzier workshop titles, don't I?)  Anyway, it's Sunday, Nov 14 at 2 pm at the Barnes and Noble on College Ave.  It's the NaNoWriMo midway point, and hopefully it'll give you a nice little burst of energy to keep you going...

Hope your Halloween was spookily amusing.  Ours was... Lil Dude was a cuddly, fuzzy dragon and I was a dead Victorian lady (my old standby).  And today is Day of the Dead--  I didn't make an altar this year, but I saw some gorgeous ones at the library's Dia de los Muertos festivities.  Lil Dude and I stuffed ourselves with sugary pan de muertos and tamales, listened to calavera (skeleton) tales, heard our friend Gloria Garcia sing and read poetry, and walked in a fun parade, complete with a guitarist and giant puppets.... all in perfectly glorious sunny fall weather.

Have a happy week,
Laura