Do you know those students? The ones who say things and you think, oh yes, that’s what I meant to say, but they actually said it better than you could have? Andrea Lani is one of those people.
I met Andrea in one of my early online Motherhood & Words classes, and then she took an advanced version of the class, and each time I read her work, I was wowed by her. (She’s now finishing up her MFA in fiction, so watch out people.) But she’s not just a talented writer, she’s also a mom to three boys, has a day job, publishes a zine, takes fabulous photographs, and can craft just about anything into anything. Honestly, whenever I visit her blog I feel so terribly lazy. (That’s not to say, of course, that she’s bragging about her skills–she’s not that way at all.)
There is always a part of me that’s nervous when I know my students are reading my work. Because what if they hate it? (On a bad day I imagine copies of my books flying over shoulders and mutterings that sound a lot like “I knew she was full of shit.”) Which is why I’m so happy if instead they say nice things.
Today, my blog tour stop is over at Andrea’s Remains of the Day. Andrea writes:
In her essay “Talking About Mothers” Sara Ruddick writes, “In writing as in living, it is difficult to describe the pleasures of motherhood without sentimentality, to discuss the inevitable pain without false pathos, to balance the grim and the satisfying aspects and to speak of each honestly.” Kate Hopper has hit that sweet spot in Ready for Air. As I read, Kate’s love for Stella, her fear, her exhaustion, her frustration, all radiated off the page, and always felt completely genuine and not sentimental. Now I’m going to go back and read Ready for Air again, much more slowly this time, to try and see how she pulled it off.
Thank you, Andrea, for your powerful writing, your envy-inducing crafting, and for being part of the Ready for Air blog tour. I’m grateful! Please go check out Andrea’s blog, friends. And from there you can click on links to her published writing.