The Shebooks Interview, and It's Official, It's On, It's a Whole World Out There

Saturday, May 24, 2014

You know that Shebooks publishing venture I've been speaking of? That ever-growing cache of stories and memoirs—written by women to be read in one sitting? That brain child of Peggy Northrop and Laura Fraser that has been releasing truly fantastic e-books for a mere $2.99 each, week by week, by writers like Hope Edelman, Jane Ciabattari, Ariel Gore, and Suzanne Braun Levine?

Yes, that one.

Well, a fully enhanced Shebooks site is now live. It features author interviews, videos, extras. It offers a subscription service (currently discounted), that allows readers to buy the books they want at a low monthly price.

(Shebooks is also launching a Kickstarter "Equal Writes" campaign this coming Tuesday.)

My own Shebook, Nest. Flight. Sky. On love and loss, one wing at a time, is the first memoir I have written in many years and many books. It matters to me. Launched early this year, it now sits on the enhanced Shebooks site with extras such as an excerpt, a reading guide, and an interview which begins like this, below:

What prompted you to write Nest. Flight. Sky.?

I teach memoir at Penn, I’ve written about its glories, challenges, and consequences in Handling the Truth: On the Writing of Memoir, I blog daily about life (Beth Kephart Books), and once, a lifetime ago, I wrote five memoirs. But it has been many years and many books since I’d dared to write the extended truth. By the time Shebooks emerged, I was desperate to speak. My mother had passed away. I had become obsessed with birds and nests, but I did not understand why. I believe that it’s only in writing toward questions that we find at least some of the answers. I wrote Nest. Flight. Sky. to find some answers.

Birds and nests have been a recurrent theme in your work. What is the origin of this?
Nest. Flight. Sky: On love and loss, one wing at a time is, indeed, about recurrent images. It’s about those birds, those wings, those nests that have entered into all the fiction I have written—one book after another, ever since my mother died. It all began with winter finches tapping on my windowpane in the months after her passing. It became a quest for hawks, for hummingbirds, for flight.
When did you first decide you were a writer? 

Do we ever decide that we are writers? Or do we just decide that we must write, that we will not be able to breathe if we do not? I’m not sure, even all these books in, that I am a writer. I think readers are in charge of that decision. I only know that, since I was nine, words and their melodies gave me a sense of being nearly whole.

To read the whole thing, go here.

And local readers, please join me and other writers today at Main Point Books to help celebrate the first year in the life of an Indie. I'll be signing Going Over and Handling the Truth: On the Writing of Memoir. For more on that, go here.


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