First, the Good News
Last week brought a byline I’ve been working literally years to see.
As an avid reader and fan of Tablet magazine from its outset, I’ve sent submissions and/or pitches–essays, poems, book reviews–to various editors for a very long time. With no success (though with gracious and friendly responses).
Finally, my persistence yielded something more: a dispatch from a terrific literary event—a celebration of Anzia Yezierska’s classic novel Bread Givers—that I attended last Wednesday evening.
But—(You Knew This Was Coming, Right?)
On the very same afternoon that the Tablet piece appeared—less than one hour later!—I received a brief email informing me that (yet again), I’d failed to win a grant that I’d applied for. In this case, persistence has evidently not yet paid off, since this is the third (or is it the fourth?) time I’ve applied for this particular grant.
This year, I thought I had a really good shot.
Guess I was wrong.
Advice for Memoirists and Hanukkah Lights
I spent Sunday at the Jewish Book Council’s Jewish Writers’ Seminar here in New York. And then I spent some time on Monday writing up a post for the Fig Tree Books blog summarizing some highlights from Shulem Deen’s superb keynote address, “Craft vs. Indulgence: Finessing the Memoir Form Beyond Telling Your Story.”
When I returned home, it was time to light the Hanukkah menorah (called a “hanukkiah”) for the last time this year. I think you can see why Hanukkah is known as the Festival of Lights. It’s really a minor holiday on the Jewish calendar. But it sure is a pretty one!