Signs of the Times

It started with Hanukkah. When she was three, my first daughter came home from pre-school toting a dreidel and singing a Christmas carol. My Irish Catholic/English husband shrugged and gave the top a whirl. A month and a half later, she came home, plopped a red lantern on the table, and chortled, “Gung Hay Fat Choy!” My husband raised his eyebrows. “What?” I cleared my throat. “She’s wishing us happy…

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Writing Routine by Deb Tiffany

What You Need for Your Writing Routine: 1. The oldest, ugliest trousers imaginable. Mine are fleece and were at one point, I believe, actually my brother’s. Extra points if they’re saggy in the behind and knees. Double extra points if you dare to wear them in public, on errands, around people you know. 2. A vat of coffee. The stronger the better. My current brew is called “Jet Fuel.” For…

Thursday, November 13, 2008

For the First Time in a Long Time by Deb Tiffany

This post isn’t really about voting; it’s more about the aftermath of the election. As I watched Barack Obama’s speech on television, I was fascinated by the close-ups of faces in the crowd. There were college kids, and older people, a little girl perched on her dad’s shoulders. There were all kinds of backgrounds, all shades of skin. Some people were crying, some folks had their hands clasped or folded…

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Up in the Air by Deb Tiffany

I may be the only author in the world who doesn’t really mind if she doesn’t go on book tour. That’s not to say that I don’t want to sell a gazillion copies of my book and wake up to find it posted in the top ten on a bestseller list, I just don’t want to travel to do it and the reason is because I’m terrified of flying. Really…

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Horse Sense by Deb Tiffany

Okay, I’m embarrassed to admit this, but I find myself, at the very tail end of my thirties, going through my horse phase. I realize this is probably something I should have done when I was nine, but I can’t help it. For the past few years I’ve been besotted with everything equine. I love the reassuring solidity of horse muscles, and the way they blink their eyes. I love…

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Hard and the Sweet

I may have something slightly wrong with me because my “sweetest days” are all ones I’m simultaneously glad I never have to go through again, but am also sad I can never get back. Take my the first few months of my first daughter’s life, for example. Does anyone know what she’s doing as a brand-new mother? I certainly didn’t. My daughter was born screaming, and she didn’t stop for…

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Same Old, Same Old

We seem to live in a culture obsessed with the power of transformation. We have TV shows that tell us how we can redecorate our homes, magazines that tell us what kind of clothes and makeup to buy for which occassions, how to lose weight, how to gain muscle, how to make ourselves bigger and better in every way. Except, I don’t want to change. I think I’m fine, thanks…

Thursday, October 9, 2008

What I Didn’t Read on my Summer Vacation

For reasons I still haven’t quite gotten to the bottom of, the summer I was fourteen my mother decided it would be tremendous fun to take a little mother-daughter trip. On a train. From London to Hong Kong. Bear in mind that this was back in the pre-Glasnost Dark Ages. Reagan was in the White House. The Day After had just beamed its vision of post-nuclear civilization across America, scaring…

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Right Call at the Right Time

In publishing you have to take a lot of the wrong kind of calls before you receive the one you want to hear. Or at least you do if you’re me. To wit: I received my first bad call on top of a mountain. I was on cross-country skis, sweating my way up an incline, and it was just starting to snow. “Hello?” I screamed into my cell phone once…

Thursday, September 18, 2008

School Daze

Okay, so the title of my post is cheesy, but hear me out. Back to school isn’t just for kids anymore, and if any of you are moms out there, you’ll know what I mean. I have three kids: one in kindergarten, one in pre-K, and one about to start nursery school, and, man oh man, are the first few weeks back in boot camp/school hard for everybody involved. Here’s…

Thursday, September 11, 2008