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Monday, July 21, 2014

Blog Tour de France

Old me, Paris 2012
...Or just a blog tour I am participating in while wishing I was in France.


Who looks this gorgeous after a mastectomy? WHO??

The lovely Ann Marie Giannino-Otis, author of the funny and frank blog Stupid Dumb Breast Cancer, invited me to participate in this blog tour. I had the pleasure of meeting Ann Marie during a HuffPo Live segment she and I (and Angelo Merendino) did about photography and BC. I was honored when this fabulous lady asked me to join her in this blog chain!

The next part of this thingy is to share with you some of my blogging pals. Here are they are:

Olivia Howell - The Lovely Sisters

Liv and I go way back -- college, to be precise, when we lived in the same theme house. Olivia runs The Lovely Sisters with, you guessed it, her sister Jenny. It's a kick-ass lifestyle blog, so gorgeous photos abound, but it also comes with a healthy dose of wisdom and realness, as Olivia also documents her life as a working mom. There's a lot of Latin in there too -- shit you can use to sound real smart and impress da ladies, like this beauty: ad astra per aspera, or "to the stars through difficulties."

Ashley Lucas - Cupcakes + Owls

Ashley is a fantastic artist and illustrator (and fellow Jersey Citizen to boot!). She's written and illustrated numerous publications for kids, and her blog is full of adorable crafts and activities for kids and grown ups. What I'm most excited about is her upcoming very-cute-but-not-for-kids picture book, Angry Artist (illustration above). Oh, so much to relate to!!

D. Allen - The Body Connected

"In an environment where all bodies—even those declared “dead” or “damaged”—were useful, respected, and beautiful, I felt at home."

D. is poet and essayist I met during our residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts last fall. D's blog is full of gorgeous, life affirming essays on nature and the body, like the recent "Wild and Searching Forms," from which the above quote was taken. D's band, The Sweetness of Gone, will similarly slay you. So just be ready with your tissues and waterproof gear.

The theme of this tour is writing process, and I have some questions to answer for ya. (Thank god...otherwise you'd get another weird meander through my brain like I posted last week!) So here goes:

(1) What am I currently working on? 

I'm in the final throes of my first novel, a little middle grade historical number. It's got a sassafrass 12 year old narrator, and it takes place on a farm in the 1920's. Basically my fantasy life.

My other project is more amorphous, and it's a memoir/research project, about the cancer experience, family history, and the history of medicine. I plan to work on this during my workshop with Cheryl Strayed (FUCK YEAH) this August.

And, you know, this blog.

(2) How does my work differ from others of its genre? 

I'll talk about the memoir project for this one. By incorporating the histories, I hope to recontextualize my personal experience. What does it mean, for me and all my rituals of medicine, that my great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandmother was a tried and convicted in the Salem witch trials? SOMETHING IMPORTANT, I'm sure.

(3) Why do I write what I write? 

It's all about understanding this madness. It's all about "You're okay, I'm okay." Or not okay, however it may be. It's about reaching out into the void, and screaming.

(4) How does my writing process work?

I don't drive, so I walk a lot. Phrases will materialize while I walk, and I repeat them as I step, branching off in strange directions. Those little nuggets can often become the nucleus of a piece.


  1. Awesome Emily! Can't wait to ready your novel... Sounds wonderful ;)