Sometimes–no, more than sometimes–being a writer gets in the way of being. It seems that I am always doing, and doing becomes tiresome.
Because of the doing–meaning “marketing” my books, which I find to be consuming–I completely missed the passing of someone who was my inspiration–the well-known author, Carolyn See. I would have known about her passing if I had lived again in Los Angeles and read the Los Angeles Times. I would have seen her obit and mourned her passing by picking up and rereading my copy of her inspirational book “Making a Literary Life” with its yellowed lines and turned down edges marking her extraordinary advice.
Instead, I went merrily on my way, living in the dearth of information here in Northern Arizona. I may love it here, but I also love the Times, and miss the information it provides. Instead, I learned about her passing from Carolyn See’s daughter, also a well-known author, Lisa See.
Some background here: I bought Carolyn’s book back in 2006, about three years after its publication. Carolyn noted how to reach her–I don’t remember if it was an email address or a web page, but I contacted her and we began a correspondence of sorts–me writing her short notes and Carolyn sending me amazing post cards of the Los Angeles I grew up in and remember so well. Her notes to me were one of a mentor, pushing me to keep writing.
One day, almost a year ago, while cleaning out drawers in my office, I found the stack of postcards from Carolyn. Although our correspondence had ended, I never threw them away because they seemed so precious and Carolyn noted they were from a collection of postcards from her father.
Not long after that I received a postcard from Carolyn’s daughter, Lisa, announcing her most recent novel, “The Island of Sea Women.” And, there was a return address…
Read more about Carolyn and Lisa See in my next post.