• 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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Someone Left the Cake Out in the Rain

Worked all weekend uninterrupted on my revision. So deeply in my own head amazing. Down to the last three chapters, also the most difficult in terms of, well. everything. This is where the roosters crow, where everything has to pay off, where I want you to cry or get an enormous lump in your throat. I’ve probably rewritten fifty or more percent of the book. Tried to eliminate confusion, howlers, lapses in time line, sharpening dialogue. Making sense. Finding exciting verbs. Using the word jettison. Running a few new similes up the flag. Pulling some poetry out of my ass to give the thing the ring of truth.

How do you make something ring true?

13 Responses

  1. simple as making it ring true by being true?

  2. No idea about the ring true stuff, but now I have a MacArthur Park earworm. Not a bad thing.

  3. “How do you make something ring true?”

    Tell the truth. Change the names to keep from getting sued. Anybody asks, say, “It’s fiction.” Anybody asks, say, “It’s as true as you want it to be.” Shun the airy persiflage.

    • Tell the truth. Duh. Thank you. So good. So smart. I kind of forgot.

      • I don’t need this shit, Betsy. Fare thee well.

        • Wait, what? I was humbled by what you wrote. Truly. I apologize for my off key comment. I went back in and got somewhere with the scene I had been struggling with. I’m so sorry for offending you. Please don’t go.

          • Thank you for emailing me, Betsy, so we could clear this up. It was a misunderstanding. Sometimes I get too prickly. But I’m back.

  4. It’s hard to do, but for me, it’s when I find myself feeling the emotion I’m going for on a re-read. (Whatever that emotion might be) Word choice is so important – but it sounds like you’re doing/have done the work to make it so.

  5. Sincerity, but only if it’s real (sincere?).

  6. I’m prone to melodrama, so I’m always trying to dial that back in favor of more understated reactions, which feel truer to how most of us get along in the world.

  7. To thine own self…
    From that, the true bell rings organically.

  8. You just know when it connects. You feel it, they feel it.

    Page 174, three lines down.
    “This game, I think, is intimate. You can’t be anything but yourself.”

    You play the game well my friend, depend on that, remember that.

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