It's been a long time since I read a P.D. James novel, but I'm going to pick one up again very soon. I heard Ms. James interviewed by Jian Ghomeshi on CBC radio this morning, and she was gracious, wise and very articulate. Every writer can learn something from her. (You can listen to the interview here.)
Even after all her success and many books, Ms. James (Phyllis) still has moments of self-doubt and relies on people around her to tell her if a piece of work is any good. Imagine that, at 91 years of age!
I appreciated her vitality, humility and perseverance. What a great role model! Now, I'm off to find one of her books. (I hope I'm still writing at 91.)
Yesterday, I read a funny article in Publisher's Weekly called, Holiday Gifts That Writers Will Actually Use, by Hannah Gersen. If you're stuck for ideas, check out her post for some great gift-giving tips. My personal favourite:
4. John Cheever famously donned a suit every morning in order to write. But as Ann Beattie recently revealed, and as a generation of bloggers already knows, most writers wear awful clothing while they are working. Help your writer friend out by giving her a beautiful robe to cover up her bizarre ensembles. Even if she already has one, she probably hasn’t washed it in a long time, and could use another.
And while I'm on the seasonal theme, I have been checking out Christmas/Winter books for the youngest book lovers in my life, and have come to the conclusion there are very few that I would consider buying. Perhaps it's time to write one myself. (Will ponder that idea over the holidays.)
I have been hearing about Desolation Sound for years. It's the most northerly community on BC's Sunshine Coast and, from all reports (in spite of the gloomy name), it is a stunningly beautiful area. I had hoped to get there last summer, but never actually made it. So, imagine my thrill to find a new book about the place. (I can live vicariously.)
The book is Adventures In Solitude: What Not to Wear to a Nude Potluck and Other Stories from Desolation Sound by CBC Radio host, Grant Lawrence. It is funny, poignant, well written and filled to the brim with tales of interesting and quirky people who have lived in or passed through Desolation Sound over the years.
The stories span several decades and comprise an eclectic blend of writing that includes larger-than-life characters, wild frontier escapades, a reverence for nature, and an abiding love for family and friends. What more could we want?!!!
It was a book that surprised and delighted me, and convinced me I must get to Desolation Sound very soon.
To find out more about Adventures in Solitude, go here. You'll be dreaming, too.