• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies When I set out to learn about my mother's bridge club, the Jewish octogenarians behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, their gen, and the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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Ground Control to Major Tom



Sometimes one of my writers will fall into a hole. If they are writing a book about blankets, suddenly the whole world, they are convinced, is obsessed with blankets. They will see something in the newspaper about horse hair blankets and send me the link. The craft museum is staging an exhibit about quilts! See! A famous designer is using old blankets to make ponchos. Every conversation they have gets steered toward blankets. Guess what was on TV last night? Yup, Beach Blanket Bingo.

I call this rapture of the deep. It’s something that happens to divers when they have either gone too deep or don’t get enough oxygen and their thinking is impaired. I call it rapture of the deep because it’s all consuming. I’ve worked with writers for long enough to know that rapture is part of the process of immersion. It’s always a relief, however, when they start coming back up for air.

Have you seen the rapture?

13 Responses

  1. Yes. With pirates. Story coming soon, mateys.

  2. I’ve seen the movie starring Mimi Rogers and David Dukovny..

  3. You mean everybody is’nt obsessed with the Madoffs and the Great New England Hurricane of ’38 ?

  4. Oh yeah. Writing obsession is a rapture I can believe in.

  5. I started a response but realized it would be, like the half-dozen previous responses I’ve made on this blog, 100% rapture. Sheesh. So here’s that response minus the rapture:
    I see_____ in ________ and __ ___ _____. My forbearance for _____ is ________ but I probably exhaust people. The intimate ____ we all ________ is sharp in my _____ but I am not sure what the rules are about ____ and _____. Not sure anyone knows. I am an _______ sometimes, I guess. A compassionate _______, I hope.

  6. Sadly yes, except in my case I think it’s more like the plot bunny. And then I try to make myself believe my bunny’s not on the wrong trail. I might insist to myself for a long time that I’m not going in the wrong direction, and that’s when it becomes the rapture, i.e. refusal to acknowledge there’s a problem here.

  7. Just hole after hole after hole! Love the holes. It is only holes.

  8. “Have you seen the rapture?”

    In a way. Or in ways. Something like the rapture to which you refer. I think. Due to my military background, there was a time when I could not look at a piece of terrain (i.e., the landscape) without thinking about how troops could be deployed upon it. When I first got into the legal profession, everything I saw was a potential lawsuit. After I received a certain form of literary training, nearly everything I read had something wrong with it and I could tell you exactly what it was.

    Christ, what a bore! No wonder I don’t get invited to parties.

  9. I remember a college prof of mine once told me about an old colleague of his. The man had been working on a book for more than twenty years and it was over 1500 pages. He said nobody would ever read or publish it–he had become obsessed. I wonder if anyone has ever encountered someone similarly afflicted…is there any way to throw a life line down that sinkhole? Is there any coming back?

  10. Yes, especially when I’m out floating on air. Everything seems so wonderful and logical that I know I have captured the essence. I have piles of scrap paper that hold astonishing insights. I grasp beauty for awhile, like firmly holding a child’s hand while crossing a busy street. All is well until I return to earth and see what makes sense to me doesn’t offer insight or, worse yet, is incomprehensible drivel.

    Most gets fed to the woodstove, torn up paper burning bright for a few seconds then turning to ash. Some words, though, find their way onto another page and my soul is grounded, barely.

  11. Oh. So all the tow trucks, operatic references, flowers, buttons, my favorite shade of green and overheard conversations regarding Mardi Gras Indians that I notice these days aren’t signs from the Muses to sustain my various WIPs and other creative pursuits? Can’t accept that notion; too depressing.

  12. Rabbits, I tell you. Rabbits everywhere. Nothing but horrid rabbits and their giant rabbit buck teeth gnawing. chewing, gnashing at my manuscript. I fight them.

    I draw lines of ink around my paragraphs as with trails of turpentine so to keep snakes out of Aunt Mamie’s azalea beds.

    My novel _The Treason of Bunnies_ is a 125,000 word farce in the style of _Candide_ which will appeal to men under thirty, bored, and with excessively groomed facial hair.

    Of course, I seek representation. Who doesn’t like bunnies?

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