Oops…! Almost forgot to write this down, but I’m getting interviewed in five minutes!
Recently, I had the great honor and pleasure of being invited to the most beautiful wedding.
These are the bouquets I created for K and A’s wedding cakes:
The day of the ceremony, the bouquets were placed on the wedding cakes. Thanks to my talented friend C., and a long, sleepless night, I can post pictures of the cakes. Long story short, baking didn’t go as planned, but everything worked at the end. And that it’s all that matters. Much love to you, C.
After the ceremony I sealed the bouquets with a glossy finish and then mounted them on frames:
There’re moments in life when you feel pure contentment. Recently, I’ve been lucky enough to experience joy in different forms. Now, I’ve reached the next, blessed level, Authors’ Nirvana. E. J., a high-schooler who has recently read The Priest, is writing a book report on it. Inspiring a teenager to talk about a story on social issues is both humbling and exhilarating. I feel honored my little book was chosen. No other words are required. Thank you, E. Much love to you all.
I have a fascination for miniatures. When I was a kid, I used to build dollhouses for my dolls. They were made out of my cousin’s diaper cardboard boxes—the only cardboard boxes I could get my hands on at the time, and they were sturdy. I painted them, cut holes for the windows and the doors, used the partition sheet (used to separate the diapers) to make the floor, built stairs with folded and reinforced paper, glued fabric to make the curtains. Hours and hours of fun. Then I forgot all about them.
In the last fifteen years, I rediscovered the wonderful world of dollhouses. One of the thing that was immediately clear to me, after building several structures, is that, although a miniature, a 1/12 scale dollhouse requires space to be displayed. Space that not everybody can spare, especially when you build or collect them.
The Quarter Inch Scale is the perfect solution. Four times smaller than a regular inch scale dollhouse (1/12), this miniscule scale can be quite whimsical. It took me some time to build my quarter inch scale Condominium, a kit I bought at a Seattle dollhouse show, but I enjoyed the process of finding objects that could be used to make furniture and decorations. For example, I used a 1/12 scale teacup to make the lamp shade in the small sitting room. Glue gun drops became the pitchers displayed in the kitchen. Cutout from catalogs became rugs and wall accents. Beads became tomatoes; a game piece from Monopoly became the dollhouse in the girl’s bedroom. Scraps of laces and fabric became sofas and couches. Recently, someone made me notice that the miniature kitchen looks a lot like my real one. Maybe, in the next remodeling of my house—one is due soon, I’ll have the tile sink and the iron stove added as well, to match the rest of the room with my miniature one. One can only dream.
Quarter Inch Scale Condominium
I’ve talked about this little project of mine, here as well.
I think we’re close. Alessandro is a genius, and I don’t get tired to repeat how much I like his work. Maybe a tweak at the landscape… ? Not sure, which probably means it’s perfect as it is.
For my birthday, my DH surprised me with 20 hard copies of my novel. He worked with Alessandro to get the cover printed right and the final result is a work of beauty. When I uncovered the pile of books DH had carefully arranged on the kitchen table, I felt pure joy. Looking at the shiny cover made me ecstatic, but when I actually held a copy in my hands, I had an out of body experience. This is what happiness looks like:
And, this is me signing copies. Do I look the part or not?
Yesterday, I went to sleep and I thought, “I can’t wait to wake up tomorrow.” The mere idea of spending a whole day writing, reading, and editing made me smile. I consider myself extremely lucky, because I can do what I like and I’m surrounded by people who let me do it. Having a good editor and a good cover artist behind my books also help achieve peace of mind.
When, three years ago, I decided to start writing in English I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. To begin with, Italian and English require two different parts of the brain to be learned, spoken, and written. Moreover, writing a novel is a demanding affair by itself without adding the language challenge. But, I do like to be challenged and I’m a patient person. I write every day and I don’t need holidays or breaks from it, because it’s something I want to do. Writing energizes me. It’s my personal vitamin D.
I strive to reach 1000 words written every day, sometimes I end up with more, other times less. Since I embarked on this journey, I’ve written 800k words: 8 finished novels, and 2 short stories. Not every one of them will leave my pc. My first Nanowrimo’s attempt, 56k words, it’s an example of fantasy gone terribly wrong and isn’t salvageable. Although, it was a good exercise and I learned a lot from it. I’m constantly working on my writing until it reaches the point where I think it’s worth hiring an editor.
The Priest was edited by not one, but three different editors, plus the final proofreader. Being the first time I tried to publish anything, I didn’t know what I needed to get the novel out and I made a few mistakes along the way. Fortunately, when I thought the time had come for my little book to see the light of day, I was told by the editor hired for the very final pass before publication that there were several problems with the manuscript. She didn’t have any opening soon, but was nice enough to send The Priest’s first chapter to Amy Eye, so that she could give me an example of her editing skills. She is currently working on Pax in the Land of Women, and I already booked her for the third and final installation in The Ginecean Chronicles, which sums up what I thought about her editing skills. Lesson learned, catastrophe avoided, and all is well that ends well (literally translated from Italian).
Morale of the story: work hard, be scrupulous, and never give up. Eventually, you’ll find the editor who’ll make an honest writer out of you.
With Pax’s cover, Alessandro and I are in symbiosis. After having worked so hard for The Priest’s, creating this second cover is proving much simpler. Here’s the second attempt, and I can already say that we are on the right track. I think that the heading should match the one on The Priest, but we are close to the final cover.