WEBVTT 00:00:00.000 --> 00:00:04.000 We at the WOU bookstore are delighted to have Maren Anderson here to day to share 00:00:04.000 --> 00:00:06.000 with you about her most recently published work, Fuzzy Logic. 00:00:06.000 --> 00:00:13.000 Maren came to Western in 2002 as an instructor and since 2009 has published 4 works. 00:00:13.000 --> 00:00:20.000 Somehow between shoveling alpaca poo, raising her kids and teaching, Maren still finds time to 00:00:20.000 --> 00:00:23.000 develop her imaginative ideas into brilliant stories for us to read. 00:00:23.000 --> 00:00:28.000 So, please join me in welcoming the creative, the delightful, Maren Anderson. 00:00:28.000 --> 00:00:30.000 applause. 00:00:30.000 --> 00:00:33.000 Maren Anderson: Hi everyone, thanks for coming. Welcome to my reading. 00:00:33.000 --> 00:00:42.000 This is my book, this is Fuzzy Logic. It's the 4th book that I've published. 00:00:42.000 --> 00:00:49.000 With a little bit of air quotes because there's traditional publishing and there's nontraditional publishing and I've done both, 00:00:49.000 --> 00:00:57.000 So, this came out in December and what I thought I'd do today, is I'd like to read 3 parts of it for you. 00:00:57.000 --> 00:00:60.000 But intersperse them with other talking. 00:01:00.000 --> 00:01:07.000 So I'm going to start out with a little of an origin backstory here for you. 00:01:07.000 --> 00:01:10.000 And the set up for this, 00:01:10.000 --> 00:01:13.000 is that the main character's named Meg. 00:01:13.000 --> 00:01:17.000 And she's gone through a really nasty divorce. 00:01:17.000 --> 00:01:25.000 And the only place that she feels comfortable anymore, she lives in the city, the only place that she feels comfortable anymore, 00:01:25.000 --> 00:01:28.000 is in the country on her grandma's farm. 00:01:28.000 --> 00:01:33.000 So, "I realized last summer that I felt happiness at nana's farm. 00:01:33.000 --> 00:01:40.000 I visited frequently during my divorce moping around the farm, petting the ponies I used to ride as a kid. 00:01:40.000 --> 00:01:44.000 And then one day nana led me by the elbow to her dilapidated pickup truck 00:01:44.000 --> 00:01:47.000 the one papi had kept running with bailing wire and spit. 00:01:53.000 --> 00:01:58.000 We drove through miles and miles of flat central valley cropland, just greening up for the spring. 00:01:58.000 --> 00:01:65.000 It reminded me when we were kids, all the cousins would pile on top of each other to go to a church picnic or a county fair, 00:02:05.000 --> 00:02:08.000 and we'd play crop identification with nana. 00:02:08.000 --> 00:02:12.000 She knew what each farmer was growing just by a few leaves poking through the soil. 00:02:12.000 --> 00:02:16.000 Corn. Soybeans. Beet. Garlic. Wheat. 00:02:16.000 --> 00:02:20.000 Nana would smile at the right answers and outright laugh at the wrong ones. 00:02:20.000 --> 00:02:25.000 The game got easier as the summer progressed but I still found it devilishly difficult 00:02:25.000 --> 00:02:28.000 to tell a garlic plantation from one growing sunflowers. 00:02:28.000 --> 00:02:31.000 At least for the first few weeks of summer. 00:02:31.000 --> 00:02:35.000 That day I wasn't even able to guess what the little leaves might turn into. 00:02:35.000 --> 00:02:42.000 Eventually, nana slowed her little pickup truck and pulled into a driveway marked by a sign that read "Ambrose Alpacas" 00:02:49.000 --> 00:02:52.000 She laughed "No, not at all. I think you need an alpaca adventure." 00:03:00.000 --> 00:03:04.000 I squinted at the windshield at what appeared to be a fuzzy white deer, grazing in front of us. 00:03:04.000 --> 00:03:08.000 It looked like the love child of tribble from Star Trek and a giraffe. 00:03:08.000 --> 00:03:12.000 I followed nana out of the car, confused. "I've never seen one of these." I said. 00:03:25.000 --> 00:03:29.000 I spun around to see a tall thin woman I recognized from the summer church picnics. 00:03:29.000 --> 00:03:35.000 She smiled "Patti, Meg, if you'd called I would have brought the little ones closer so we wouldn't have to walk." 00:03:35.000 --> 00:03:39.000 Nana laughed "I could use a hike, let's go." 00:03:39.000 --> 00:03:43.000 As we made our way through the paddocks, the alpacas followed us. 00:03:44.000 --> 00:03:53.000 They sniffed the air as we passed and stepped behind us as we walked through the pasture. 00:03:53.000 --> 00:03:57.000 When we stepped through the gate, they clustered around the fence and watched us. 00:04:02.000 --> 00:04:08.000 Finally we arrived at a field with about 10 adult alpacas and several tiny versions bouncing around in the grass. 00:04:17.000 --> 00:04:20.000 It looked like nirvana. 00:04:20.000 --> 00:04:24.000 The grass was green, the trees were leafy and cool shade puddled under the branches. 00:04:24.000 --> 00:04:29.000 The alpaca moms grazed or dozed while the babies darted around their dames like an obstacle course. 00:04:29.000 --> 00:04:34.000 If their moms looked like fuzzy giraffes, the babies looked like they were made out of pipe cleaners. 00:04:36.000 --> 00:04:40.000 When we stepped, one or two of the dames raised their eyes to us 00:04:40.000 --> 00:04:46.000 confirmed our benign nature and then returned to grazing. And the babies bounced as if we weren't there. 00:04:46.000 --> 00:04:49.000 I felt the knot in my chest relax a little for the first time in weeks. 00:04:49.000 --> 00:04:54.000 I took a deep breath, it felt like I had never had air in my lungs before. 00:04:57.000 --> 00:04:63.000 I sat. And instantly realized I had sat in something other than grass. "Ew." 00:05:08.000 --> 00:05:12.000 I was too embarrassed to speak so I just moved to a cleaner spot. 00:05:12.000 --> 00:05:18.000 Nana and Minnie talked about someone I didn't know, so I watched the shenanigans of the babies and smiled. 00:05:18.000 --> 00:05:22.000 Even though my ass was wet and brown and smelly. I didn't care. 00:05:22.000 --> 00:05:27.000 There was so much evident joy in the field and I let it just wash over me. 00:05:28.000 --> 00:05:32.000 Then a brown baby noticed me. He strode over and stuck his little nose in my face, 00:05:32.000 --> 00:05:36.000 he blew warm moist on my nose and gave my chin a whiskery nibble. 00:05:36.000 --> 00:05:40.000 I blew back as I would have a horse and he bounded away like an antelope fawn. 00:05:56.000 --> 00:05:60.000 Minnie and nana walked laughing back to her house, leaving me crossed legged in the grass. 00:06:00.000 --> 00:06:07.000 I was surrounded by fuzzy, munching, humming, impossibly appealing creatures and I didn't want to leave ever. 00:06:08.000 --> 00:06:15.000 I decided I wanted two. "I'm paying for the vet bills and stuff" I said when nana handed me a cold glass "Of course you are" she said. 00:06:20.000 --> 00:06:26.000 I wasn't looking forward to explaining this unexpected livestock purchase to my mother or my city friends, but nana, 00:06:26.000 --> 00:06:31.000 Nana was one person understood completely. 00:06:32.000 --> 00:06:36.000 Applause. 00:06:36.000 --> 00:06:39.000 Alright so that's a little bit of backstory 00:06:39.000 --> 00:06:43.000 So I'm going to give you a little bit of backstory about this book 00:06:43.000 --> 00:06:49.000 because that's the first questions anyone's going to ask when we get to the question and answer session is "How'd you think of this book" 00:06:49.000 --> 00:06:52.000 And to do that back story I have to give you a little bit of my own backstory. 00:06:52.000 --> 00:06:59.000 I have an alpaca farm. I showed you a few slides of my critters up there a minute ago. 00:06:59.000 --> 00:06:63.000 And about a decade ago my husband and I bought some land west of here. 00:07:03.000 --> 00:07:07.000 And we decided we needed livestock, because what else are you going to do with land, we're not going to grow things 00:07:07.000 --> 00:07:13.000 so we should have some animals. And of course I wanted a horse because I'm a girl and I won the horse gene. 00:07:13.000 --> 00:07:15.000 Laughter. 00:07:15.000 --> 00:07:18.000 But my husband wanted something different and he thought llamas were cute. 00:07:18.000 --> 00:07:24.000 And then we ended up at an alpaca farm and then we fell in love and that was the end of that. 00:07:24.000 --> 00:07:27.000 Alpacas are smaller than llamas, 00:07:27.000 --> 00:07:31.000 and alpacas are basically Peruvian sheep, they're breed for their fleece. 00:07:31.000 --> 00:07:35.000 And they do look like a giraffe and a tribble had a baby. 00:07:35.000 --> 00:07:41.000 And they have very cat like personalities which fits us because we have very cat like personalities. 00:07:41.000 --> 00:07:46.000 So then when I was looking for an idea for another book, 00:07:46.000 --> 00:07:52.000 I realized that I'm the type of person who will read anything that has a horse on the cover. 00:07:52.000 --> 00:07:60.000 And so I've read lots of different things, but I realized that I'd never seen a book with an alpaca on the cover that was a fiction book. 00:08:00.000 --> 00:08:04.000 And so a little light when on and I was ooh niche. 00:08:04.000 --> 00:08:12.000 So that was the sort of the thunderbolt of idea of where that book idea came from. 00:08:12.000 --> 00:08:19.000 Yeah? Okay so, I'm going to read you a little bit more. This one, 00:08:20.000 --> 00:08:24.000 is earlier in the book but not backstory. 00:08:24.000 --> 00:08:27.000 This is Meg's first day on her new farm. 00:08:27.000 --> 00:08:33.000 So she divorces her husband, she flees the city, she buys an alpaca farm, almost sight unseen. 00:08:33.000 --> 00:08:37.000 And this her showing up on the first day, and she's about half way through the tour. 00:08:37.000 --> 00:08:45.000 Oh and Lou and Molly are the two farm hands that sort of came with the place, they live on the property. 00:08:45.000 --> 00:08:51.000 And they sort of take care of the majority of stuff because she realizes she knows nothing about alpacas 00:08:51.000 --> 00:08:56.000 and she didn't want to do it all by herself. So. 00:09:00.000 --> 00:09:06.000 The stud barn sat in far pasture, trim and dainty compared to the larger barn by the house. 00:09:06.000 --> 00:09:10.000 A number of alpacas grazed in the pasture, 5 or 6 brown and grey and white animals. 00:09:10.000 --> 00:09:17.000 As soon as we stepped through the fence, a huge black shadow shot from the barn and bounded toward us. 00:09:21.000 --> 00:09:27.000 And he started looking for carrots in Lou's pockets. "Mr. Ambassador must have his treats." 00:09:30.000 --> 00:09:33.000 I'm not tall but Mr. Ambassador could look me in the eye. 00:09:33.000 --> 00:09:36.000 Most alpacas only come up to my chin. 00:09:41.000 --> 00:09:45.000 I plunged my hand into 6 inches of the softest, silkiest fleece I'd ever felt. 00:09:45.000 --> 00:09:49.000 I pulled the fleece open like a book and saw little ladders of waves marching down to his skin. 00:09:53.000 --> 00:09:57.000 Mr. Ambassador was an inky light swallowing black all the way down to his skin. 00:09:57.000 --> 00:09:62.000 I thought of how awesome it would to feel to knit it into a luscious scarf or sweater. 00:10:11.000 --> 00:10:16.000 He pointed to the other alpacas in the field, "These are all his dates. The girls waiting to be bred to him" 00:10:24.000 --> 00:10:28.000 That's when he kicked me so hard in the shin that I fell on my ass. 00:10:36.000 --> 00:10:40.000 He pulled me to my feet, "damn, I forgot to warn you about his tail, I'm sorry" 00:11:00.000 --> 00:11:04.000 Lou looked at Basso and then shook his head "That one is just all hormones and no brains." 00:11:04.000 --> 00:11:07.000 He squinted at the barn, "You okay? I think I see a gate open." 00:11:12.000 --> 00:11:15.000 I couldn't hold it together anymore. 00:11:15.000 --> 00:11:17.000 That horse that broke my leg had been trying to kill me. 00:11:17.000 --> 00:11:24.000 No one had told me that the newly rescued horse had been beaten with a rake by his abusive owner. 00:11:24.000 --> 00:11:31.000 When I stepped into his stall to clean it as I had done hundreds of times before with other horses, he kicked me so hard 00:11:31.000 --> 00:11:33.000 I was flung against the wall and knocked unconscious. 00:11:33.000 --> 00:11:38.000 My friends were able to get me out of there but they thought I was dead. I woke up in the hospital. 00:11:38.000 --> 00:11:44.000 Basso of course had kicked me in the same leg, and it ached to the bone. What the hell are you doing here I asked myself. 00:11:44.000 --> 00:11:48.000 What made you think you could do this alone? 00:11:48.000 --> 00:11:51.000 I choked down my doubt and smiled bravely when Lou came back. 00:12:03.000 --> 00:12:08.000 It was a huge building by Berkeley standards but compared to even nana and papi's barn, it was petite. 00:12:08.000 --> 00:12:14.000 There was only one story for starters and it could have been configured into 8 stalls, but it was only set up to divide the girls into 4 00:12:14.000 --> 00:12:20.000 It smelled exactly the way a barn should. Hay, manure and animals. 00:12:20.000 --> 00:12:23.000 The scents triggered memories, the way that smells do. 00:12:23.000 --> 00:12:30.000 Of sitting in nana and papi's barn enjoying the cool shade and watching papi fiddle with some piece of antiquated equipment. 00:12:30.000 --> 00:12:34.000 It was his purpose in life to resurrect broken machines of all kinds. 00:12:34.000 --> 00:12:40.000 And seeing him coax life back into a radio or a combine harvester as I chewed on a sun hot apple, 00:12:40.000 --> 00:12:42.000 or a piece of hay was as calming as a day at the spa. 00:12:42.000 --> 00:12:45.000 I know, I've tired both. 00:12:45.000 --> 00:12:52.000 The barn storage across the isle from the stalls, and that is where we found Molly attaching a wagon to the tractor. 00:13:09.000 --> 00:13:14.000 I felt myself blush and was instantly angry with myself for it. I didn't have to explain to this bitter woman, 00:13:14.000 --> 00:13:18.000 that I'd noticed my own alpacas pooping in the same spot and wondered about it. 00:13:18.000 --> 00:13:22.000 Despite being angry, I said "I don't know as much as you Molly, but I'm here to learn." 00:13:25.000 --> 00:13:30.000 I'd always wanted to raise an eyebrow like that. 00:13:48.000 --> 00:13:55.000 Lou clenched the pipe in his teeth, put a hand on my shoulder "Molly will come around," he said 00:13:55.000 --> 00:13:60.000 when she drove away, "I hope so" But then Lou smiled and turned to door of the barn, "Here's some sunshine." 00:14:04.000 --> 00:14:07.000 I did the same and frowned when I couldn't hear anything. 00:14:07.000 --> 00:14:12.000 Lou shushed me before I could complain. So I listened some more, then I heard the crunch of tires on gravel. 00:14:12.000 --> 00:14:18.000 Lou nodded, "You'll get really good at hearing tires, there's no traffic so any car coming, is coming to see us." 00:14:18.000 --> 00:14:24.000 We stepped out of the barn to see a blue pickup racing up the driveway, kicking up a rooster tail of gravel and mud. "Who's that?" 00:14:36.000 --> 00:14:41.000 Lou went up to the truck and leaned on the hood as the vet collected his things and threw the door open. "Hi Lou" he said "How's things?" 00:14:41.000 --> 00:14:46.000 The two men shook hands like old friends, but they were quite the contrast in manhood. 00:14:46.000 --> 00:14:50.000 Lou was white haired and willowing, the vet was jet haired and broad shouldered. 00:14:50.000 --> 00:14:54.000 They both looked like they belong on a ranch and I felt like I was out of place. 00:14:54.000 --> 00:14:58.000 Like a new pair of shoes fresh out of the box that shouldn't be dirty yet. 00:14:58.000 --> 00:14:61.000 I absently put my hand on my damp bottom, again. 00:15:13.000 --> 00:15:17.000 He had a soft hand and gentle grip. Lou's hand was hard and horny with callouses. 00:15:17.000 --> 00:15:21.000 I smiled "I'm just here to follow up on a couple things" He said, 00:15:21.000 --> 00:15:25.000 And his brown eyes crinkled "Nothing to worry about" 00:15:25.000 --> 00:15:30.000 Didn't realize I was holding the vet's hand and grinning stupidly until Lou cleared his throat and said 00:15:36.000 --> 00:15:38.000 and I blushed like a 12 year old. 00:15:38.000 --> 00:15:45.000 Dr. Cody Arden put his hands in his pockets, "Is that so? Well, you better get a move on, things close early around here." 00:15:45.000 --> 00:15:47.000 Lou and I can take care of things. 00:15:53.000 --> 00:15:56.000 I never blush and yet my face still felt hot. 00:15:56.000 --> 00:15:60.000 Then it occurred to me that as the owner of the animals the vet was here to see, 00:16:00.000 --> 00:16:04.000 I should at least inquire which ones he was going to check. 00:16:04.000 --> 00:16:09.000 Instead of walking back and asking though, I stopped and watched Lou and Dr. Arden laugh about something. 00:16:09.000 --> 00:16:12.000 They knocked each other back and forth as they moseyed into the barn. 00:16:12.000 --> 00:16:18.000 And the hardwired aversion to shame deep inside me said, "there's a chance they're laughing at you cause your ass is wet." 00:16:23.000 --> 00:16:27.000 Applause. 00:16:27.000 --> 00:16:32.000 It sounds cool, but the first draft of this book took me 30 days to write. 00:16:32.000 --> 00:16:35.000 Because I do the NaNo WrMo. Which is the National Novel Writing Month. 00:16:35.000 --> 00:16:44.000 Where literally hundreds of thousands of crazy people get together in November and pledge to write 50,000 words in 30 days. 00:16:44.000 --> 00:16:48.000 Which is 1,667 words a day if you're doing it evenly. 00:16:48.000 --> 00:16:53.000 And it is this mad cap crazy, wonderful thing, it's really freeing. 00:16:53.000 --> 00:16:60.000 Because if I'm writing 1,600 words a day, I am not thinking about the details, I am trying to get the story down. 00:17:00.000 --> 00:17:04.000 And it's really awesome that way. 00:17:04.000 --> 00:17:09.000 So, that was the first 50,000 words of this book and that was great. 00:17:09.000 --> 00:17:17.000 And then it took me maybe another 2, 3 months to get the other the 10 15,000 words down and that was awesome. 00:17:17.000 --> 00:17:24.000 And then it took me maybe another 8 or 10 months to edit it into something that I thought was great. 00:17:24.000 --> 00:17:29.000 And then I handed it to a bunch of my first readers who were like "eh." 00:17:29.000 --> 00:17:34.000 And I'm like "what do you mean, eh? I worked really hard on this" They were like "eh, we don't like the main character" 00:17:34.000 --> 00:17:42.000 And I didn't know what to do. If your book's main character is broken, your book is broken. 00:17:42.000 --> 00:17:50.000 So as an experiment, I rewrote the first 650 words. Because originally the book was written in 3rd person. 00:17:50.000 --> 00:17:53.000 That is, "She was happy" 00:17:53.000 --> 00:17:57.000 I rewrote it in first person, as in "I was happy." 00:17:57.000 --> 00:17:65.000 And I sent the original 3rd person and the first person versions to about 5 or 6 writer friends of mine, 00:18:05.000 --> 00:18:08.000 And I said, with no context "Which one do you like better?" 00:18:08.000 --> 00:18:13.000 And long story short, I had to rewrite the whole freaking book into first person. 00:18:13.000 --> 00:18:17.000 And that took another 8 or 10 months. 00:18:17.000 --> 00:18:26.000 And I did the math, because I'm masochistic and from start to finish, with lots of little breaks in between, 00:18:26.000 --> 00:18:32.000 this thing took me 30 months to write. And then it took me another year to sell. So. 00:18:32.000 --> 00:18:40.000 I may have written the first draft in 30 days, but books are long processes. 00:18:40.000 --> 00:18:47.000 But it was such a better book for having rewritten it into first person and just rewritten it just one more time. 00:18:47.000 --> 00:18:55.000 And by the way, when I say I rewrote it, that does not mean that I did a find and replace for she and put I in there. 00:18:55.000 --> 00:18:59.000 Because when you're in 3rd person, you can pop into different people's points of view, 00:19:00.000 --> 00:19:04.000 When you're in first person, you cannot do that. And so I had to rewrite everything. 00:19:04.000 --> 00:19:12.000 So that you the audience, the reader, only knew what was going on from Meg's point of view. 00:19:12.000 --> 00:19:17.000 I'm going to read one more thing and then we'll do some questions and answers and stuff like that, okay? 00:19:17.000 --> 00:19:21.000 So, this has very little set up. 00:19:21.000 --> 00:19:27.000 Meg has bought her sheets but she had to go to Walmart for her sheets and she decided that was not, 00:19:27.000 --> 00:19:30.000 going to be a long term solution. 00:19:30.000 --> 00:19:33.000 I decided retail therapy would also help my homesickness some. 00:19:33.000 --> 00:19:37.000 I retraced my steps to Salem, the state capital, 20 minutes from the pie house. 00:19:37.000 --> 00:19:42.000 And it was funny how my GPS only began working once I was in a town that had more than one Starbucks. 00:19:42.000 --> 00:19:50.000 It directed me along the highway over a river, and upon cresting the bridge, hallelujah, a Nordstrom sign greeted me. 00:19:52.000 --> 00:19:57.000 I guess the state's senator's wives need a place to buy shoes I told the GPS lady. 00:19:57.000 --> 00:19:62.000 She silently chided me for such a sexist remark. But before I could actually start arguing with the GPA 00:20:02.000 --> 00:20:07.000 that some senators might have male wives, she informed me that I had arrived at my destination. 00:20:08.000 --> 00:20:14.000 Ah Nordstrom. It wasn't Sacs Fifth Avenue, but I still emerged with bags stuffed with towels, excellent sheets, 00:20:14.000 --> 00:20:18.000 some cookware, an electric kettle. Then I headed to the work shoe shop. 00:20:18.000 --> 00:20:24.000 Of course I bought shoes at Nordstrom's, but Lou said I needed something called Muck Boot. 00:20:24.000 --> 00:20:30.000 The sales lady actually sniffed when I suggested the 2 inch heels and the boots she showed me were impractical. 00:20:30.000 --> 00:20:35.000 The salesman pointed me to another store down the street that would have what I needed. 00:20:36.000 --> 00:20:40.000 I should have put my shopping bags in the back of my car before entering the other shop, 00:20:40.000 --> 00:20:47.000 Not only was I the only woman present, but I was certainly the only one with 100 percent Egyptian cotton towels bulging from my bags. 00:20:47.000 --> 00:20:53.000 A man in jeans and a hat, ambled over to me, gave me an up and down glance and smiled as if I was going to be a treat. 00:20:56.000 --> 00:20:60.000 I signed, instantly identifying him as a jerk. 00:21:04.000 --> 00:21:08.000 He didn't actually say little lady, but I heard it. 00:21:16.000 --> 00:21:20.000 He lead me to a wall, a literal wall of boots. 00:21:31.000 --> 00:21:36.000 I just adapted my normal shoe shopping technique, I substituted "doesn't leak" for "looks cute." 00:21:36.000 --> 00:21:40.000 He motioned for me to sit and then brought 3 boxes. 00:21:40.000 --> 00:21:45.000 I opened the first to see a pair of black utilitarian boots made of rubber and neoprene. 00:21:45.000 --> 00:21:48.000 I pulled out the ugly boot and tried to look at it appraisingly. 00:21:48.000 --> 00:21:53.000 It looked exactly like the ones Molly wore, I sighed inwardly, reminding myself 00:21:53.000 --> 00:21:57.000 that they'd soon be covered in manure and took the cardboard stuffing out of the toe. 00:22:02.000 --> 00:22:07.000 I leaned over to unlace my sneaker but before I could pull of the shoe, he plucked it off my foot. 00:22:07.000 --> 00:22:13.000 Then he cradled my heel just a moment too long before he slid the boot over my sock "How's that feel?" he said. 00:22:13.000 --> 00:22:18.000 I don't think he was talking about the boot. 00:22:18.000 --> 00:22:21.000 Before I could answer though, he pulled it off and slid on another trimmer boot. 00:22:21.000 --> 00:22:25.000 With his long fingers wrapping around my instep in between fittings. 00:22:32.000 --> 00:22:37.000 I never thought I'd find a foot fetishist in a utilitarian shoe store. 00:22:37.000 --> 00:22:42.000 I imagined the types of feet he must usually see and shuddered inwardly. 00:22:42.000 --> 00:22:47.000 I didn't even have a chance to register an opinion about the dainty boot either, because he slid it off. 00:22:47.000 --> 00:22:51.000 And replaced it with very, very cute red paisley rubber boot. 00:22:51.000 --> 00:22:54.000 And I said "Oh" before I could stop myself. 00:22:57.000 --> 00:22:61.000 By sliding his hand all the way up my calf to back of my knee. 00:23:12.000 --> 00:23:16.000 I had to sit again to take the boot off and replace it with my shoe. 00:23:16.000 --> 00:23:18.000 Making a big show of what a huge hurry I was in. 00:23:18.000 --> 00:23:24.000 I rushed to the check out counter, clutching the boot box and thrust my credit card at the girl who stood behind the cash register 00:23:24.000 --> 00:23:32.000 popping her gum. She smiled in a way that seemed either cruelly delighted by my encounter, or jadedly sympathetic. 00:23:32.000 --> 00:23:35.000 She handed back my card, "Dave took care of you, did he?" 00:23:42.000 --> 00:23:46.000 This time, her smile was definitely cruel. Bitch. 00:23:46.000 --> 00:23:48.000 Laughter. 00:23:48.000 --> 00:23:51.000 Thank you very much. 00:23:51.000 --> 00:23:58.000 How do you write things that are funny, especially the subtler kinda of humor? 00:23:58.000 --> 00:23:61.000 I don't know. 00:24:01.000 --> 00:24:06.000 To be honest, I try to write things that amuse me. 00:24:06.000 --> 00:24:14.000 And if I'm not chuckling while I'm writing these things, then it's not funny to me. 00:24:14.000 --> 00:24:20.000 And I have actually been trying to read up on how to write things that are funny, no body knows. 00:24:20.000 --> 00:24:28.000 We all have our techniques and there's ways to set jokes up but, 00:24:28.000 --> 00:24:35.000 mostly I write to amuse myself and if other people find it amusing, then that's awesome. 00:24:36.000 --> 00:24:41.000 Otherwise, I think back on things that have happened, 00:24:41.000 --> 00:24:50.000 to me, or things that I've read or things that I've watched that made me laugh, and then I steal them outright and stick them in the book. 00:24:50.000 --> 00:24:56.000 So, like the foot fetish actually came from Sex in the City. I just took it out of that 00:24:56.000 --> 00:24:61.000 cute shoe shop and put them into a utilitarian shoe store, which made it even funnier. 00:25:01.000 --> 00:25:05.000 But yeah, I'm a writer and so I just steal wherever I can. 00:25:05.000 --> 00:25:10.000 Stephen King, she thinks that every writer has a reader. 00:25:10.000 --> 00:25:13.000 And imaginary reader that they're writing for. 00:25:13.000 --> 00:25:20.000 Wife or husband or something like that? No. I write for myself to amuse myself. 00:25:20.000 --> 00:25:25.000 And that's served me relatively well. 00:25:25.000 --> 00:25:34.000 I love my husband, he is about half way through this book, it's not his genre, it's not anything he's interested in, we just don't cross that way 00:25:34.000 --> 00:25:40.000 So, no I'm a mostly write for myself and if other people get a giggle then that's awesome. 00:25:40.000 --> 00:25:44.000 I edit for other people. 00:25:44.000 --> 00:25:48.000 Does that make sense? I read things aloud. 00:25:48.000 --> 00:25:57.000 I put the editor's hat on, and the editor's a different person from the creative person and the editor in my head 00:25:57.000 --> 00:25:64.000 is terrifying. Wants everything to be correct. I wrote the Comma Book with Kate Ristau 00:26:04.000 --> 00:26:09.000 and I have something I have to uphold. They're out there. 00:26:09.000 --> 00:26:15.000 And so I've got an editor that I edit for, but the writer's just me. I just write for me. 00:26:16.000 --> 00:26:18.000 And if you guys like it then that's awesome. 00:26:18.000 --> 00:26:23.000 How I separate the creative from the editor, because she has trouble. 00:26:23.000 --> 00:26:28.000 And absolutely, if I let the editor in, she wrecks the creative person. 00:26:28.000 --> 00:26:38.000 I tell student that its like, I imagine them as two girls at a party and my muse is this flowy gauzy hippy chick 00:26:38.000 --> 00:26:45.000 and she's got flowers in her hair and she's wonderful, but if she sees the editor come in, with her pencil skirt and her librarian bun. 00:26:45.000 --> 00:26:49.000 And her severe pencil stuck in her hair, she leaves out the back door. 00:26:49.000 --> 00:26:52.000 They cannot be in the same room together. 00:26:52.000 --> 00:26:59.000 That's one reason why this writing fast thing is awesome because you cannot edit, and write fast at the same time. 00:26:59.000 --> 00:26:66.000 You only can write in this straight line, and so the techniques I've developed to allow me to do that, include 00:27:06.000 --> 00:27:14.000 writing as if, so like for instance, I just wrote the end on a manuscript, which is total disaster, it's such a mess, 00:27:14.000 --> 00:27:21.000 About two thirds of the way into the book, the sidekick decided that it didn't want to be a boy, it wanted to be a girl. 00:27:21.000 --> 00:27:27.000 And so from then on, fortunately the name is Bailey, so I didn't have to change the name, but I had to write in big brackets, 00:27:31.000 --> 00:27:36.000 And when I go back to edit, I'll have to work on the first half of the book, to make Bailey a girl. 00:27:36.000 --> 00:27:38.000 Cause she's a man in that part of the book. 00:27:38.000 --> 00:27:44.000 But instead of going back and fixing it, I just went forward and that's one of the techniques I have. 00:27:44.000 --> 00:27:46.000 Thank you very much for coming. 00:27:46.000 --> 00:27:49.000 Applause.