Title and Tittle-Tattle

Some days, I think about retitling this blog "The Usual Crazy," as that would more accurately reflect the everyday state of my mind than the calm verdure of a Brooklyn Arden. I aspire to that verdure, though. The trees there would be gorgeous and arching and delicate, like the sycamores over Poets' Walk in Central Park, and everyone would lie on blankets reading books or toss Frisbees to happy dogs or do yoga. Mmm.
  • Returning to real life: I just accepted an invitation to speak at SCBWI-Illinois's fall conference in Chicago on November 15, 2008.
  • I'm also going to be speaking at SCBWI-New Jersey the first weekend in June. I don't know what topics I'll be covering for either one, so your suggestions are appreciated.
  • Actually, for June I was thinking I would do an updated submissions talk, since I haven't done one of those in -- yeesh! -- four years; or I would give the character speech again, since I haven't put it up on my website and therefore I can still use it. But I am a glutton for writing punishment, so if someone gives me a better idea I'll probably get all excited about that and go after it.
  • Elizabeth Bunce's A Curse Dark as Gold is garnering marvelously good reviews, including a star from the BCCB. Yay Elizabeth!
  • Last Friday James and I went to the movies together. We both saw a film about attractive young people in New York City, only his involved a rampaging, greedy monster without any apparent motive for the destruction, and mine involved Bill Clinton. (Republicans, you can thank me for that opening later.) His was Cloverfield; mine was Definitely, Maybe (not to be confused with Lisa Yee's next novel Definitely Maybe -- hers doesn't have a comma, and that makes all the difference). While D,M was a little contrived, it was both non-cloyingly sweet and yet admirably realistic about the occasional pain and confusion of romantic relationships -- the fact that you grow into and out of some people, and sometimes the timing isn't right, and there can be more than one true love for you in life . . . Altogether, a charming, nicely grown-up romantic comedy; and when James and I met up again outside the theatre afterwards, we were both perfectly satisfied with our selections. You can read an interview with the screenwriter/director of D,M here.
  • I'm off to Chicago this weekend to visit my dear friend KTBB, who's in the country for a medieval history conference. We plan to see the Chris Raschka exhibit at the Art Institute and eat pizza while watching the Oscars.
  • My Oscar picks: "No Country for Old Men"; Daniel Day-Lewis; Julie Christie; Javier Bardem; and, let's see, Ruby Dee, as the surprise sentimental vote. The thing I'm most looking forward to is the musical performance of the song from "Once," though. Love "Once."
  • End of procrastinatory rambling.