the day that was: Melissa Firman, George Shaw, Small Damages, Truth

Thursday, July 26, 2012

I began a blogging conversation with Melissa Firman of The Betty and Boo Chronicles so long ago that I can't remember the first prompt, the earliest words.  Melissa and I share many things—proximity (at least until a transfer took her west), friends, a love for our children, a love for books—and the first time I actually met Melissa was on a bitter cold night, when she came to a talk I was giving about the impact of place on my work.  She came bearing books, my own.  She has built, over time, an embarrassingly generous Beth Kephart library.  Even as she does so many things, for so many others, and even as she keeps her Facebook friends abreast of the special people in her life.

And so Melissa's words today, about Small Damages, are the words of one who has read an oeuvre with great care.  They are the words of someone who has carefully, patiently watched my work evolve over time.  Reading Melissa's blog post was, to me, akin to reading a scholarly piece.  I learned so much and became so absorbed in Melissa's thinking that it wasn't until the end that I remembered that she was writing about me.  This post was so exceptional that my publicist, Jessica Shoffel, sent an email earlier:  Making sure you saw this one.

I share Melissa's words at the end of a day of many emotions.  We honored our George Shaw this morning at a beautiful service in which grandchildren read, a son eloquently remembered, and family and friends and neighbors knit tight.  How proud George is, looking down, on his gigantic community.  His son referred to George as an extraordinary ordinary man.  My own son, sitting near me in the pews, said later that that is the best kind of man. 

After the service and lunch I came home to read Handling the Truth one last time, for it is bound for copyediting soon.  I'll never quite forget the note Lauren Marino, my Gotham editor, wrote last night to tell me that we are entering the book's next phase.  Having just sat here today and read all 61,000 words through again, I hope it is all right to say here that I am so at peace with Truth.


Serena said...

Wonderful day in many ways....

Unknown said...

Oh, my goodness ... this is really too much.

Melissa said...

Oh my goodness ... this is really too much. So glad you liked the review. :)

patti.mallett_pp said...

Peace is a wonderful thing. So happy to read this. (Heading to Melissa's blog now.)

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