News from Heidi
Here you can find news about the book, festival, and what's happening with Heidi.
I'm counting down the last 100 days before the book's publication with 100 Fun Facts about writing the book. Stay tuned by subscribing to my News feed. (See the tan box on the right-side of this page.)
Here are the first 10:
Look for the answer to the question right here on Nov. 16 --the day I think I might meet Barbara Kingsolver in person! I'm terribly excited.
99. This book has been 12 years in the making! I started a version of this book in 1997 shortly after I left corporate law.
98. I have worked on the book at 6 different artists colonies including: Jentel (twice), Djerassi, Ucross, Ragdale, New York Mills Cultural Center, and Hedgebrook.
97. When I was very stuck with the novel, I trained and ran a marathon to cure my writer's block. It kind of worked.
96. A deal with my buddy Laurie Braun to write 200 words each week and then read them aloud to her in-person or over the phone kick-started my writing too. Many of those 200-word passages are still in the book today. Thank you LKB!
95. There is a real-life Aunt Loretta; and she is beautiful too!
94. When Barbara Kingsolver called me last year to tell me that I'd won the Bellwether Prize, I didn't answer the phone because I thought it was a telemarketer. (She left a message--whew!)
93. I got a mean rejection letter from a literary journal that didn't like the chapter I was sending out as a story. That story ended up winning the Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition and is part of the book.
92. I like to write with blue ink best.
91. I got to meet Vanessa Williams a couple of years ago after she read a short excerpt from the book. She was so beautiful and so incredibly nice! Can I just say: I love her!
Stay tuned for more Fun Facts--the countdown continues next week! Maybe you have questions about the book I can answer? Let me know!
I had a ton of fun at the SCIBA Feast of Authors Awards Dinner. I ate dinner with Ron Carlson; sat next to Lisa See; and met Elizabeth Kostova when she introduced herself to me because of our shared connection with the Lois Roth Foundation. All in all a fantastic night!
I'm excited to do the book tour for The Girl Who Fell From the Sky starting in January. I'll be keeping you up-to-date from the road about my experiences with a podcast you can download easily on itunes. For now, I offer you this reading from the 2009 Bread Loaf Writers' Conference. It was a fun crowd! HeidiBreadLoafnews.mp3 . Photo by Brandon Stafford.
I was honored that EbonyJet.com chose my blog, Light-skinned-ed Girl, as the Favorite Blog of the Week on Sept. 18, 2009.
I started blogging in 2006 with the tagline: "a mixed chick's mixed thoughts on a mixed-up world."
I blog about biracial identity, the vagaries of race, and the Mixed experience—the whole "biracial thing." I also blog about the creative life—inspirations and disappointments—and travel.
Some of my favorite posts include my month-long series started in 2007 called "Mixed Experience History Month." Each May, I profile historical figures--innovators, artists, politicians, writers, etc.—who are mixed-race like August Wilson, Nella Larsen, and Isamu Noguchi.
I also blog about my writing process and about this wonderful journey I'm on now as I go from being an unpublished to published novelist (Feb 2010!--whoo-hoo). And I blog about my adventures, struggles, and obsessions.
In 2008, I blogged every single day for the calendar year. Now I post about two or three times a week--it's where you'll find what's really on my mind (and maybe it's on yours too).
Thanks to everyone who has checked out my musings. I hope you'll keep reading.
A million thanks to the wonderful booksellers and librarians of the PNBA. It was my first author event and I was thrilled to share The Girl Who Fell From the Sky with such lovely folks. I did a lot of talking and laughing. And I got to sign 150 copies of the Advanced Reading Copy that was distributed to Feast attendees at the evening's end. I hope you all enjoy the read!
Publishers Weekly, publishing's leading trade publication, counts The Girl Who Fell From the Sky among the season's most promising debuts. “This moving portrait of a young girl will remind readers of Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye and Jamaica Kincaid's Annie John,” says publicity director Michael Taeckens. Winner of the Bellwether Prize for Fiction, the novel is, says best-selling writer Barbara Kingsolver: “Haunting and lovely, pitch-perfect. This book could not be more timely.”
Other titles on the magazine's top ten include: Belinda Bauer's Blacklands, Adam Haslett's (a fellow Yale Law grad) Union Atlantic, and Victor Lodato's Mathilda Savitch. Read the complete story here. [PDF]
Los Angeles, CA April 30, 2009—The Coca-Cola Lounge featuring guest celebrities reigns as the largest West Coast Loving Day celebration hosted by the Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival at the Japanese American National Museum, 369 East 1st Street, June 12, 2009, at 6:30pm, in downtown Los Angeles.
The free mixer, sponsored by the Coca-Cola Company, features the Coca-Cola Lounge for drinks and cool fun while DJs Life and Vika spin decades of dance floor classics.
The Festival's Loving Day party celebrates the Supreme Court decision which affirmed the right of people of different races to marry. The party is held in conjunction with the 1000-person New York City Loving Day celebration hosted by Loving Day.
Inspired by a real event, this is the story of Rachel, the daughter of a Danish mother and a black G.I., who becomes the sole survivor of a family tragedy.
With her strict African-American grandmother as her new guardian, she moves to a mostly black community, where her light-brown skin, blue eyes, and beauty bring a constant stream of mixed attention her way. As she grows up and learns to swallow her overwhelming grief, she confronts her own identity as a mixed-race young woman in a world that wants to see her as either black or white.
In the tradition of Jamaica Kincaid's Annie John, Dorothy Allison's Bastard Out of Carolina, and Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye, The Girl Who Fell from the Sky tells the tale of how Rachel comes to terms with a past that is unfathomable and with a uniqueness that raises more questions than answers.
The Girl Who Fell from the Sky is the winner of the 2008 Bellwether Prize for a fiction manuscript that best addresses issues of social justice.
Look for it in bookstores in February 2010. You can pre-order the book now.
I will be heading to the Bread Loaf Writer's Conference this August 2009. More about the conference.