Saturday, August 24, 2013

the joy of work

Woke up this morning to see a raccoon climbing up the ivy on the wall outside my window, going home to bed after a night of marauding. Not in Mexico any more.

The weather is beautiful here in Toronto, though last night, for the first time in weeks, I had to go upstairs in the evening to find warmer clothes - sweatpants and a cardigan. Getting chilly at night. Summer is ... what is it it Joni Mitchell sings? "Winter's comin' in. "And he gets the urge for going' when ..."

Well I'm not going anywhere. I'm working, do not disturb. I spent the whole first day after my return re-reading and going over the notes of the friends who'd read the book. I started to wonder about finding an agent or a publisher, when it's ready. And then I remembered - I have an agent! I have a New York agent, Richard Curtis, a very nice man, a fan of my Gordin book who took me to lunch in NYC and eventually was sorry he could not sell it to a commercial press. He and I did not have any financial dealings, therefore, since I was the one who took it to the University of Syracuse Press. But we've kept in touch.

So I wrote him yesterday, telling him a bit about the memoir and asking if he'd like to see it when it's finished.

He would.

This is real. Giving it to critical friends is one thing; to a New York agent, is another.

So I have a goal - to mail it to him Labour Day. On or thereabouts. I've been down this route before, so I'm not in fairyland. When Richard called me in 2006, telling me he loved my query letter and wanted to read the manuscript, and then that he loved the book and wanted to get a good publisher - well, I thought fame and accolades, and maybe just a bit of financial compensation, were just around the corner. Turned out not to be the case. He may not like it, and if he does, may not be able to sell it. But I have a goal - a pair of interested eyes, a savvy mind. That means a great deal.

My brother, his partner and son are in town, and we are having a family barbecue tomorrow. I must go out and buy groceries, must water the garden. But otherwise, I'm unavailable. Go away.

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