Ten writers for children. All with something to say.


My Summer...

It's hard to believe summer is already at an end!  I wish I could say I finished a manuscript or signed a new contract or am about to launch a new book, as some of my fellow spuds are doing. My summer has been busy, but not filled with much time for writing.  The day after school was out my husband and I headed to the Outer Banks of North Carolina for a week with both our children and their families.  It was a wonderful week, especially with my brother looking after our parents so I could relax.  Here's a photo of all of us on the beach at sunset.

That same week, I began teaching an online writing workshop through McDaniel College's graduate certificate program in Writing for Children and Young Adults.  It was a busy 8 weeks, but I think I learned as much as my very talented students, and I hope to continue as an adjunct, teaching in the program.  In fact, I've been asked to be a faculty advisor for one of my students during her MLA final project--writing a young adult novel.

Throughout the teaching, I was also planning and preparing for our annual 2-day regional SCBWI conference, which went off without a hitch in mid-July.  We had an amazing line-up, including keynote authors, Richard Peck, Deborah Wiles, Sally Walker, and Bobbie Pyron; editors Mary Kate Castellani of Walker Books/Bloomsbury, Stacey Barney of Putnam/Penguin, Christine Peterson of Capstone Press, and Rotem Moscovich of Disney Hyperion; and agents Quinlan Lee of Adams Literary Agency, Molly Jaffa of Folio Literary, and James Proimos of Welcome Literary; and a very talented illustrator, Jaime Zollars.  Here's a photo of me with Richard Peck at my home for the faculty dinner the night before the start of the conference.  What a joy to have him here in person!

I also managed to get away to Los Angeles for the 41st annual National/International SCBWI Conference, which was another amazing week, jam-packed with marvelous speakers and good friends in the writing industry.

Any spare time amidst these many endeavors was taken up with helping and caring for my parents.  Just yesterday my husband and I helped move them to an assisted living facility 10 minutes away, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they will settle in well.  The apartment is tiny, but we worked hard to make it as homey as possible with their own furniture, paintings, and other well-loved belongings.  I will, of course, be seeing them frequently, but I hope to have a lot more peace of mind knowing that they have capable caregivers available at any time day or night.

I'll close with a lovely photograph of my father with my youngest granddaughter (his great granddaughter), Piper Drew Hemingway, on his lap a couple of weeks ago.  It's one of his happier moments over these past difficult months.

Ooops!  I forgot to say that I now have my mother's 7-foot harpsichord (built in British Columbia by Sabathil & Son) sitting in the great room of our log cabin!  It is a "French Double" with a hand-painted soundboard made of Canadian Cedar, an American Black Walnut case with gold banding, and Rosewood double keyboard.  I'll post a photo in a future blog post.  In the meantime, I try to slip some practice time into my busy days as a way to calm my mind.


Stephanie said...

I love the photos:) How cool to meet Richard Peck, he's amazing. Sounds like a great summer!

Lauren said...

Edie-- I love the photos and the stories that go with each one! What a beautiful family on the beach together! I spoke with Richard Peck years ago-- he is a wonderful speaker- your regional conference sounds busy and filled with talent! I am glad you made it to the summer conference in LA too! What a busy summer you have had. The photo of your dad and granddaughter is lovely and moving. I am glad you can find some peace at home, knowing your parents are being well-cared for nearby. And now I can picture the harpsichord with the hammer dulcimer, the organ and many other instruments in your living room! Magic!

Christy said...

Edie, this is all so full--quite astonishing that you could pack so much in. Your dad looks great in that photo! So good that you have them in a place where they can receive the care they need. You did well making it homey for them.

I remember that beautiful harpsichord. Your cabin is just the right home for it now.

mark said...

Sounds like a little bit of everything for you this summer, Edie. I love the idea of having a harpsichord in your cabin -- music can indeed be soothing and rejuvenating, a good way to take a break from writing and/or life!

john said...

So happy to see that picture of your dad again, Edie. I hope things go as well as possible during this transition and I'm pleased to hear all the things you are doing to keep things flowing into your life while you look after your folks.