Friday, April 23, 2010

English class blog    Please take a look at my Advanced English student´s blog.  The school is called Colegio Multicultural Siglo XXI.  Each week I suggest a theme that they write about.  Check and you´ll see they wrote about Sandra Gulland´s visit, and before that, about what they were going to do over spring vacation.  We write one week and correct the texts the next, so you´ll find some mistakes.  Remember, these are Mexican kids writing in English. 

One kid wrote about his vacation, that he wasn´t going to do anything "and I´m gay."  I told him I thought he was hysterical, and he laughed as well.  I actually think another kid wrote it and signed Diego´s name.  In fun, not as aggression.  Anyway, I like how nobody was offended, and how Diego has enough self-esteem to think the entry was funny.  So I left it. 

Mexican beach
Open the above link QUICK! and see what Miami Herald writer Andres Oppenheimer says about Mexico courting US retirees.   
Going to the beach tomorrow.  My client and friend, Pat, says Barra de Potosi is where all the 60s hippies ended up.  Last year, though, I only observed lots of Mexican families eating mesquite-grilled fresh fish and laying in hammocks oceanside.  We´re part of that group.  I feel pretty good that our 13 and 15-year old girls still think it´s a cool thing to go to the beach with their parents.  The no-frills ambience of Barra de Potosi does allow us to pack lightly - bikini, flip flops, sunscreen. 
My great friend and wonderful author Sandra Gulland visited my high school class on Tuesday and talked about writing Mistress of the Sun and her forthcoming novel, about another of Louis XIV´ mistresses.  I was proud that my students asked thoughtful questions.  Many stayed after the bell to continue to talk to Sandra.
My husband is finished college, yet he still gets up at 4 or 5 in the morning, accustomed to studying.  I think a trip to the beach is just what he needs to readjust his whole way of living after almost 5 years. 
I´m taking index cards, at Sandra´s suggestions, to outline all the scenes of my YA novel, which is retitled, Everybody Is A Star.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Notes from San Miguel in April

Saturday, we went to a Mexican asada or cookout at Centro Ecuestre Canales, where we keep our horses and ride.  First thing noted: a fancy, new double tier grill and sausages and arrachera and a tub of iced beer.  Nothing to complain about there. 

We were invited by Eugenio Canales, who gives my girls their riding lessons.  They are practicing diligently with him these days as there is a dressage competition at his place in mid-May.  The guests were Eugenio´s friends and nephews and his workers, who tack up the horses and keep things clean around the barn, and supposedly their families.  But the guys said their wives preferred to stay home. 

A guy who works with charro horses brought his lariat and showed us how he could jump through  while spinning it.  My 15 year old daughter demanded to be taught how.  As we rolled up tacos of meat and grilled peppers, it began to get dark and the electricity suddenly went out.  One of the caballarangos (ranch-hands) went for his truck to illuminate the party with headlights and music.  He only crashed into one parked car as he rearranged his.

Next, a charro rider (and nephew of the host) called Pollo said he would leave.  Another caballarango said, "If you leave, te voy a echar sillazos."  "Ni modo, ya me voy," Pollo said and headed for the street.  Sure enough, the caballarango, as promised, threw a chair at him.  Then apparently, more chairs flew.  The wind picked up.  Guests grabbed at flying napkins and held onto their beers.  When the lights came back on, it was late and only two horse guys were left. 

Can´t wait for the next Mexican grill.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


M husband just went off to play basketball in Dolores Hidalgo and I´m home alone (this never happens) to blog and lesson plan.  The girls are on a sleepover/campout. 

Update on my memoir:

- About four days ago, an agent asked for the entire manuscript.
- My retired editor pal and mentor doesn´t like the new title, Flirting in Spanish.

that´s all!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Future Shock

I couldn´t do it!  I´ve peeked at Authonomy twice yesterday and once today.  I even reviewed some books!  Now that I´m in three digits, the addiction has a new purer strain.  How can I give it up now?

At least I sent queries to two new agents.  At least I had lunch with my writer pal, Sandra Gulland and we talked about my Young Adult novel and what to do to bring it up to date from 1974 so it´s not considered historical fiction. 

I´m easing off.  I¨m finding balance.

My 15-year old daughter has Sight, as it was called in one of the books I read on Authonomy, or vision or preciense or a connection with other energies and dimensions.  We took a trail ride together yesterday and I said, "Now that I´ve dropped 65 pages from my memoir and changed the title, is it going to be picked up?"  Often, Carla will tell us if we are going to have a good day in our business, Jasmine Day Spa.  Results are 99% accurate.  Sometimes Carla doesn´t feel like looking into the future, but she was game yesterday.

"In about three months, an older blondish lady is going to want your book." 

"Is it going to sell a lot?"


"Will it be made into a movie?"

She was laughing at me and my anxiety by now.  "Yes, but that comes later."

So here it is, her prediction recorded.  We´ll see if anything is happening with my book by the summer.  I will stick to women when I send my agent query letters from now on.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

No More Book Stalking

Holy Week in San Miguel.  The banks are closed now until Monday.  Many businesses close on Good Friday, and there are solemn processions through downtown tomorrow, going from churches like the Oratorio and the Parroquia.  San Miguelenses dress as Roman centurians and angelitos and there is a Jesus with a real crown of thorns.  On Sunday, life-sized paper mache Judases hang from rope that goes from the Jardín trees to the police station across Calle San Francisco and are blown up with firecrackers. No fuzzy duckies here. 

My husband said to me today, "For the last month, you´ve been on the computer a lot.  Do you realize that?" 

Sheepish grin.  I´ve got to give up Authonomy, and get back to writing and sending queries to agents.  I´m going to do it.  Today.