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Welcome!

LitPark will re-open in September

by Susan Henderson on August 23, 2007

Folks have been asking when LitPark will re-open, and the answer is: The last Monday of September. But hey, why not enjoy some re-runs!

LitPark Question of the Week – Best-selling authors and unpublished writers chime in on these topics:

Phobias * Near-Death Experience * Where? * Mistakes * Writer Communities * Hope * Now What? * Independent Press * Generosity * Nice! * Zodiac * Style * Professional Jealousy * AWP * Controversy * Hair * 80s * Luck * Collaboration * The Pitch * Vacation * Balancing Art and Family * Fantasy and Science Fiction * The Book Tour * Snippets * Telling Mom * Setting * High School Secrets * Your Hidden Side * Out-of-the-Box * Aliases * Obsession * Self-Doubt * Risks of Truth-Telling * 9-11 * Your Space

LitPark Interviews – Don’t miss my favorite drag queen, my rockin’ book cover designer, or the history of Neil Gaiman’s hair:

3 Trees * 60 Writers Quiz * Adrienne Brodeur * Alexander Chee * Amy Bryant * Amy Wallen * Amy Wilentz * Angela Stubbs * Aquadisiac * Aurelio O’Brien * Bach-Boy Henderson * Backspace * Bonnie Glover * Brad Listi * Brian McEntee * Bruce Bauman * Bruce Benderson * Buck Lewis * Cameron McGill * Candice Night * Carrie Hoffman * Claire Cameron * CLMP * Corey Mesler * Create Now! * Daniel Handler * Danielle Trussoni * Danny Gregory * Daryl Darko * Douglas Preston * Elizabeth Crane * Ellen Meister * Emily Maguire * Enrico Casarosa * Eric Spitznagel * FAWM (Songwriters) * Frank Daniels * Gerard Jones * Gina Frangello * Green-Hand Henderson * Greg Downs * Halloween Special * Harper Perennial Lit Chicks * Heather McElhatton * Heather O’Neill * Heather Pena * Hillary Carlip * James Spring * Jeff Swanson * Jeffrey Lependorf * Jill Gurr * Jim Tomlinson * Jolene Siana * Jordan Rosenfeld * Josh Kilmer-Purcell * Joy Nicholson * Karen Dionne * Kate Gale * Kelly Braffet * Kevin Sampsell * Laura Benedict * Lauren Baratz-Logsted * Lauren Cerand * Lemony Snicket * Lori Oliva * Marcy Dermansky * Maria Dahvana Headley * Mikel K Poet * Mom * Neil Gaiman * Norman Mallory * Olympia Vernon * Owen King * Pasha Malla * Patry Francis * Pearl Harbor Pop Pop * Peter de Seve * Rachel Resnick * Ritchie Blackmore * Robert Westfield * Robin Slick * Ron Currie, Jr. * Ronnie Del Carmen * Roy Kesey * Samantha Dunn * Sarah Hall * Sci-Fi Humorists * Scott Snyder * Seth Greenland * Shawn Decker * Stephanie Lessing * Susan Henderson * Susan Straight * Suzan Woodruff * Tao Lin * Terry Bain * The Man Eating Neil Gaiman * Thom Didato * Tish Cohen * Todd Zuniga * Tom Jackson * Tommy Kane * Watch Josh! * Wayne Yang * Writer’s Relief * You

LitPark Weekly Wrap – My wrap-ups have led to discussions about patrol camp, hitchhiking, and peeing on apples. Have a look:

Summer Vacation ’07 * Close Calls * Where We Live * Mistakes that Changed Us * Community * Hopeful * Taking Our Next Steps * Independent Streaks * The Tysha Effect * Joy and Pain * Our Signs * We Got Style * We Want a Turn * How We Make Use of Conferences * Our Controversies * Authors and their Hair * Our Lives in the 80s * Just Our Luck * Group Effort * Our 2 Sentences * How We Balance Our Time * Our Favorite Spec Fiction * Introverts at the Microphone * Our Unfinished Brilliance * Our Mothers * Places that Capture Us * Our High School Days * Our Hidden Selves * We Don’t Like Boxes * Our Disguises * Our Obsessions * Pummeling Ourselves * Who Owns Our Truths? * Our Shared Trauma * My Space, Your Space

You do not need to be a writer to play at LitPark. All book lovers, artists, directors, singers and people who love to talk about the creative process are welcome. See you in September!

Oh, P.S. Nicole Krauss, I read THE HISTORY OF LOVE this summer and I’ve never loved a book more. Just wanted to say thank you for writing it.

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Welcome back! Or just plain welcome!

by Susan Henderson on September 1, 2006

Do you like the new digs?

Okay, I’m not done decorating yet but it’s been too long since I’ve had company so I opened the doors anyway. Welcome!

If you’ve been a regular reader of my blog, you can be pretty certain I’ve missed you. If you’re new here, welcome, and feel free to introduce yourself. It’s a friendly crowd – talented and generous, too!

What is LITPARK.COM?

It’s a literary playground for writers, readers, thinkers, artists, musicians, and everyone who feels at home here.

What to expect?

Mondays – A question of the week, starring you!
WednesdaysUnique interviews with authors, artists, songwriters & more!
Fridays – A chat about you and us!
Saturdays – Special guests and hot topics!

That’s a lot of exclamation marks – sorry, but I’m excited because I know some things that you don’t know.

Thank you to Mr. Henderson who came up with the page design, using my grandmother’s old typewriter. And thank you to author, Terry Bain, who built this blog for me from nothing but a desperate list of demands.

I’ll keep it short today so you have time to poke around and subscribe and invite your friends. Unless ”¦

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Maybe you have a little more coffee left in your cup and don’t feel like doing your work just yet. Maybe you’re even wondering what I did on my summer vacation? Well, okay. For those of you still reading, I’ll tell you what I’ve been up to.

I started to outline and draft my third book. For a moment there, I was in my zone, watching the book write itself.

Then my family and I set off for South Africa – but first we stopped in England.

We went to Mr. Henderson’s childhood home and stood outside the gate, afraid to knock. (Also, what does one knock on?)

We hung out with our boys’ godfather and had Thai food at a pub with my favorite Pasha Malla, where we watched France beat Spain in World Cup soccer.

We went to Brighton Beach to eat fish and chips, slide down Helter Skelter, and look at sand sculptures featuring the history of Rome.

On to South Africa, where we were met at the airport by Mr. Henderson’s childhood friend. (They were boy scouts together). Cape Town looks more like Honolulu or San Francisco than the South Africa you see in, say, Sarafina!

I wonder: Has anyone noticed that Mr. Henderson set the wrong year on the camera?

It was winter there, meaning jeans and a sweatshirt felt fine to us, but many of the locals wore knit ski caps and heavy coats. Since I didn’t pack a sweatshirt, I spent most of the vacation in clothes I borrowed from our 6’3″ host.

I should mention it’s really windy there! Most pictures of me feature hair in my mouth.

We saw everything from penguins to whales to elephants to warthogs. See how the warthog goes down on his wrists (elbows?) to eat?

The kids rode ostriches. (Ostrich steaks are delicious!)

What else? I did a reading. (Afterward, someone said it was “a humbling and redemptive piece. And if it’s true, you’re so brave to write it!” What did she mean by that?)

I babysat our friend’s two-year-old. (This I did a lot.)

My oldest (Bach-Boy to you regulars) was very affected by the townships and small children traveling miles along the highway to collect firewood.

My littlest (Green-Hand Henderson) sat in with a local band and jammed on a guitar made from an oil can.

We visited Robben Island, where my heroes, Nelson Mandela and Robert Sobukwe, were imprisoned.

We left changed.

Back in New York, I sat on an editor’s panel with C. Michael Curtis (The Atlantic), Charis Conn (Harper’s), and Jessica Brilliant Keener (Agni) at the Backspace conference. I was nervous and my teeth chattered when I spoke.

I wrote photo essays for thenervousbreakdown.com. Some are up now; some will go up later.

I worked a little more on the new novel and then got stuck.

I was occasionally an emotional wreck regarding the two books I’ve written that exist only on my hard drive.

I missed you guys and felt impatient to blog again.

I visited my parents in Virginia and got my first tattoo at Kings Dominion amusement park.

It was only an airbrush tattoo, so it’s already washed off.

We played soccer, had visitors, went to open-mic, and adopted a greyhound named Steve. I read lots of galleys, went to readings, bragged to my friends how I wasn’t ready to send my boys back to school, and a week later thought I’d die if my boys didn’t go back to school and fast.

That’s pretty much it. Summer is nearly done and I am done with summer. Bring on the acorns!

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Okay, that’s more than enough. Now for you. Tell me what you did on your summer vacation.

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