A little over a year ago, a writer named Laura Stanfill interviewed me for her "Seven Questions Series" on her blog "Laura Stanfill. Writing. Reading. Community". It was a fun interview, and I enjoyed answering her questions on blogging and the difference between middle grade and YA fiction.
Fast forward 12 months. Laura is a visionary and had the idea to collect all her interviews, as well as invite other writers to pen what she calls "flash essays," and gather them together in book form. She decided that the focus would be on Oregon writers--of which there are many: this state is fertile ground for scribes. She also decided to set up her own publishing company, Forest Avenue Press, and print her books using some spiffy new technology, the Espresso Book Machine, located in the Purple Room at Powell's Books.
So it was that on Tuesday a whole bunch of us gathered giddily at Powell's to watch "our" book appear, literally hot off the presses. The cover, designed by Gigi Little, is beautiful--and there's some crazy good flash essaying going on between the covers. Laura has plans for readings and other promotions. A journalist in a former life, she is just amazing with her press releases, and has been a tremendous editor as well as an advocate for her writing "tribe." As she says in her Foreword:
"Oregon is full of writers who support one another. The forty two authors in this collection all live in the state or have roots here. They are novelists and journalists. They are essayists and travel writers and poets. They are funny, smart, sad, and wise. Some have been traditionally published. Some have been published by small presses or literary journals. Others are unpublished. And yet we all commit the same brave act--confronting the blank page every day. No matter what the cost, no matter what the outcome, we set our other obligations aside to write. And that's something to celebrate."
Thank you, Laura, for welcoming me into your "tribe." I got a great thrill seeing my name "on the page."