Thursday, March 31, 2005

Here I am! No longer MIA hopefully

Seth turned 11 months yesterday. My father turned 81. I’ve written 2 entries at home and never posted them. That’s how crazy I’ve been lately. I’m in the middle of moving offices so I’m not myself.

Today I’m sitting in my favorite coffee house, Kaveh Kanes downtown. They don’t charge for internet use like some other coffee shops that will remain un-named.

But this is truly a coffee house. I feel so Hemingway in here. It’s that kind of place. I love this place! It smells good! While I was walking over here form work, across the street, I looked up at the people sitting on the balcony of Cabo. It looked enticing for a minute because the weather is so nice outside, but I didn’t really feel like eating, just drinking coffee and having a snack. I’m going to stay here around 1.5 hours. It’s becoming my Thursday night deal, when possible. Rey takes care of the kids and I write for about a couple of hours, usually away from the distraction of home.

I am so excited. I did my reading last week and it went really well for me personally, although we didn’t have a huge turnout. I also had quite a few people hear me on the radio and that was cool. I was on the Nuestra Palabra show on KPFT the night prior to the reading. You can still hear the radio show on the archives on the website. Go to and then to archives. And then go to Nuestra Palabra 3-22 show.

But most importantly I feel really good about this novel and I feel like it’s going in a positive direction. I’m finishing up Chapters 3 and 4 simultaneously because I had never really finished Chapter 3. Carmen is the character I know the least. I really need to get to know her better So I’m finishing her up but at the same time I go back and finish Chapter 4 which is pretty much finished. It just needs some finishing touches on it. When I finish Chapter 5 I’m going to have a mini celebration of my halfway point.

Oh! Hey, I know what! I’m going to list here questions Angie came up with to ask me on the radio show. We didn’t have time to get to all of them so I’m going to share those questions and my answers here.

What women in your family inspire you? – My mother and my great-grandmother who I actually never knew. She was an amazing woman for her time.

  • What women in general inspire or have inspired you as a woman and as a writer? - Oprah, Isabel Allende, Sandra Cisneros, Julia Alvarez and Amy Tan. When I was in elementary school I had a wonderful librarian named Mrs. Deerborn. She encouraged me to read.
  • What has inspired you to become a writer? – My love for reading and my love for movies. I’ve loved to read since I learned in kindergarten.
  • How do you juggle being a mom, wife, having a career and writing?
    I have to prioritize, learn to pick my battles. I have to be flexible because with 2 small children it’s very hard to have a rigid schedule. I try to write for at least 1 hour every couple of days and I’ve learned to write with or without noise.
  • What would be your dream?- Every writer’s dream. To be published and to be successful. But I don’t ask to be a Stephen King millionaire successful. All I want is to make enough writing to do it full time.
  • When did you know you wanted to become a writer? – I always knew I wanted to be a writer but I think I was in denial and I repressed it. I wrote comic strips as a child, started short stories in middle and high school that I never finished. I even took 2 creative writing classes at UH as an undergraduate. I quit my job to write in 94 but I was too young. I wasn’t really ready to write. Now I feel ready.
  • What books from your childhood did you enjoy reading? - The usual, Beverly Cleary, Judy Blume, Nancy Drew mysteries but also some other not so traditional children’s literature. Lagrimas y Risas pulp fiction in Spanish, Victoria Holt novels- I loved period pieces. And my favorite novel was The Thorn Birds. I read that book when I was around 10.
  • What are your favorite all-time books/authors? – There are too many! Amy Tan’s “The Joy Luck Club,” Zora Neale Hurston’s “Their Eyes Were Watching God.” People who saw the movie a few weeks ago on TV need to read the book. It’s pure poetry!
  • When do you hope to finish your novel? – I’m aiming for December.

Friday, March 11, 2005


Sorry I've been MIA for so long. Life is just passing me by too fast! I can't believe my baby boy is 10 months already and my little girl turned 4 today (technically yesterday because it's after 12). It really does seem like just yesterday I was pregnant with both of them.

I can't believe it's going to be a year since my last reading at Nuestra Palabra when I finally decided what direction my novel was going to go. I'm reading again in a couple of weeks so if you're in Houston come and hear me read at 7 p.m. on March 23rd at MECA.

For those of you who know about my fabulous writer cousin, Oscar Casares, he has an article in this month's Texas Magazine. Check it out.

It's late and I'm exhausted. I was running after the baby all evening. He put a dime in his mouth once and one of Miranda's little plastic rings another time. I had to fish them out each time with one finger while he gagged, more from my finger than the object.

Rey watched the kids for one hour while I wrote and then I had kid duty until 12 when I finally was able to take a shower. He put the baby to sleep and I got Miranda ready for bed when I came out of the shower.

I know! We don't keep traditional hours. We don't put our kids to bed at 8 or 9 like well disciplined people. But to tell you the truth it works out better this way. The baby will still wake up at 7 but at least he sleeps through the night. Miranda will sleep late and she'll still be asleep when I take her to the sitter's but she won't be cranky in the late afternoon when she refuses to take a nap. It all works out in the end.

Work is interesting right now. I can't say much yet but I'll keep you all updated. When will I finish my novel so I can sell it for a lot of money and write full time??? I can dream can't I?