Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sunday Salon - Author Study, working out and writing

Sarah Dessen
As a reading teacher, I always felt that an author study was a great way to help students recognize the author's voice and growth. Sarah Dessen has always been one of my favorite authors to study.  First, her work is brilliant.  Her characters are well developed, plot is interesting with enough twists and and turns to keep your attention and her writing has developed enough over time to see the maturity of a seasoned writer.

As a writing teacher, I adore any author who allows their fans an inner look at the world of writing.  Dessen's blog is a great resource for teachers who love to demonstrate that authors are real people, not stuffy old men living in libraries.  Her commentary is funny, and very appropriate for the reader of her books.  Like her voice in her books, her blog is very real.  She's also great at keeping her fans updated on Twitter.   Her commentary on Twitter covers not only her writing, but world events as well.

What Happened to Goodbye  What Happened to Goodbye is the latest from Dessen.  I was disappointed that I had to wait to wait 'till July to read it, but real life crept in and my own writing deadlines, coupled with work and the hubbie's surgery have kept me insanely busy.  

   My first caveat is that there is nothing this woman has written that I've not adored.  Knowing that, I went into this book expecting something awesome.  I was not disappointed!

 I was pleasantly surprised at the wonderfulness and the depth of her newest piece.  This book is so real.  A young woman is tarnished by the public divorce of her parents.  Her constant moving from place to place doesn't help McClean in the healing process.

 Dessen makes her characters so real that you carry them with you after you've finished the books.  I really liked using her books as a way to show the strength of a well developed character and an authentic voice.

Working Out - Avon Breast Cancer Walk
  I've managed to maintain a decent workout schedule as I prepare for the 39 mile Avon Breast Cancer Walk.  Even after The hubbie's surgery, I 've walked at least three miles daily.  Next week I'll keep up the three miles on weekdays, but up it to 5 miles on weekends.  Our team is still struggling to raise money for this walk.  We always make it in the end, but we need at least $1800 each to be able to walk.  You can donate here if you are interested.  Even if you just donate a small amount, it all adds up in the end!

 Next week I'll be attending and speaking at a writing marathon.  I need this as I'm struggling to finish a long-term project.  August 3rd I'll be speaking at University of Houston Clear Lake to their graduate writing students.  I'm looking forward to spending the time focusing on my own writing, while also working with a few awesome writing students.

Enjoy your week!

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