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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Good from bad

I once heard Helen Hayes say that money is like fertilizer -- it's just ...* unless you 

spread it around to help things grow. 

Well done, David Bar Katz.

Have at it, playwrights. Get going; money's on the line now and we need your best 



Rachel Vail

PS Helen Hayes used the appropriate curse word when she said it. 

She was in her late 80s at the time I heard this speech. 

She spoke without notes or hesitation but with an abundance of 

charm. She was completely awesome. But I've been asked not to 

curse here, so schools can come freely. I'm doing my best.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

A Valentine for My Brother, plus snow and Maggie Smith

Hanging out in the middle of a big storm, feeling very very done with winter.

Here's a valentine I wrote for my brother.

And here's a picture from my street:

And here is how I feel about the weather at this point:

How are you doing?

Rachel Vail

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Two Favorite Words

I don't let myself type "the end" until my manuscript really feels done. Since I tend to write about 50-100 words for every one that ends up in the eventual "FIRST DRAFT" I send to my editor, that means those 2 words don't show up for a very long time.

And then when I work on revising the draft I take "the end" off -- just delete them -- because, well, they're no longer true. I do huuuuge revisions. I love revising. I'm not making stuff up out of nothing anymore; I'm working on something that exists, characters that feel real to me -- making the story stronger, better, tighter, making the characters feel more real.

It wipes me out.

I closed a cabinet door on my head toward the end of the process and gave myself a big forehead bruise. I just kind of lost track of where my head was. Literally.

Not the first time I've done that, during revisions. One time it was the bathroom stall door in the ladies' room, when my husband and I were out to dinner with another couple, and I gave myself a black eye. I considered lying and saying somebody attacked me in the bathroom, to save myself the embarrassment -- but that seemed like it could lead down a bad path and also, I have promised myself the only lie I will tell is that one I admitted to above.


Hahahahahahaha. As if.

So I admitted last week and that time at the restaurant to having slammed my own face with doors. I am a hazard at this point in the process.

Still, despite the bruises, it's one of my favorites.

Here's another favorite: getting foreign versions of my books in the mail. This came the day I sent in my newest. It's the Chinese version of IF WE KISS:

It's very cool to be reminded there are others out there involved with these books. Hoping they aren't slamming their heads with anything.

So now I'm chilling. (Literally. So much weather.) I am good and used up.

More about lots soon.

Rachel Vail