"Writing is problem solving." That's what my friend, author and journalist Joel Yanofsky , told my studentswhen he visited us last year. That line has really stuck with me -- because most days, that's what it feels like I'm doing at the computer: solving problems.
I am working on Draft 3 of Miracleville (a YA novel scheduled for release with Orca Books in spring 2011). I'd say my editor, Sarah Harvey , is pleased with my last revision. She has more questions and suggestions -- but not nearly as many this time. I've got eight problems left to solve, and if I stay on task, I'm hoping to be done by the end of the day tomorrow.
Because Sarah knows my next project involves writing about a large family, she recommended I read Hilary McKay 's Saffy's Angel. So I picked it up before my holiday and read it straightaway. McKay is a British author with a wonderful sense of humour. And Sarah was right, McKay does a great job of writing about a big family. There are four siblings, each one quite different from the others. I underlined some lines I loved so I could share them with you, dear blog readers (See! I think about you even when I am on vacation!). Here's one -- it's about Bill Casson, who is the kids' dad: "Bill Casson was on his way home. He was looking forward to it very much. Sometimes if he stayed away from the Banana House for long enough, it became the most desirable place in the world." Those lines, especially the last one, made me laugh out loud. It's true that when we miss a place (or a person), we love it more than ever. The trick, of course, is to love places (and people) when we're right there, close to them! How's that for today's deep thought?