Thursday, February 19, 2009

Speaking of Nancy. . .

. . . my friend Nancy Pistorius and I met for a writing date yesterday at Bistro Bella in Lawrence (Kansas). We took our laptops and spent three hours just writing, side by side. Nancy and I both have the problem of too many distractions at home, and a this was the perfect solution, especially with Nancy glancing up whenever she heard my keyboard clicks slow down and saying, “You are writing, aren’t you? I know you aren’t surfing the web.” She’s a taskmaster, but that’s what I need. (And in my defense, okay, yes, I did surf the web a couple of times. But it was for research, I tell you—research. I mean, if my characters start talking about the power of invisibility, I really need to have a grasp of which superheroes possess this power. Surprisingly, not that many.)

And speaking of Bistro Bella, WOW. Nancy knows all the good coffee shops. I’d never been to this one before—a sort of cafĂ©, coffee house, bakery combo—but it’s now one of my new favorites. It’s charming and comfy and hip (but not so hip that it makes you panic and slide back out the door when you realize your own hip factor doesn’t measure up), with tables and couches and plenty of plug-ins for laptop power cords. If you live anywhere near Lawrence, check it out. It’s at Kasold and Clinton Parkway, in the little strip mall just down from Hy-Vee.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Congrats, Nancy!

My friend and fellow children’s writer Nancy Pistorius is a fiction winner in the 2009 Langston Hughes Creative Writing Contest. She submitted the first pages of her novel, Peking Duck.

Nancy was honored on February 1 at the awards ceremony and Langston Hughes birthday celebration in Lawrence, Kansas. Hughes lived in Lawrence with his grandmother for most of his childhood.

Go, Nancy! I’m so proud of you.