6.28.14TracyEricSaturday night as part of my work for the Merola Opera Program, I had tremendous fun and the great privilege of interviewing the internationally acclaimed bass-baritone Eric Owens, who is teaching at Merola this summer. Besides being an amazing artist (his Porgy in Porgy & Bess at San Francisco Opera is indelibly etched on my memory), he is a tremendously nice person. He had a lot of fascinating things to say about singing, young artist training, and a career in opera, including the importance of appreciating the moment and not constantly worrying about what’s coming next or where one wants to be in five or ten years. It really resonated with me as a writer. I remind myself to savor things like the fist glimpse of a book cover, the arrival of ARCs, publication day. And most of all to enjoy writing the book. Publishing is such a crazy, unpredictable business that it’s easy to get stressed out or worry about where one wants to be or thinks one should be and to lose sight of the magic of creating a story (not that there isn’t a lot of hard work mixed in with the magic :-)).  As soon as I finish this post, I’m going to try to do that with my WIP!

Hope everyone is managing to savor the summer a bit. For those of you in the states with a long holiday weekend for the 4th of July, hope you have a wonderful time. If you have a chance, head over to History Hoydens where I’m blogging this week about some of the fascinating historical figures within 6 Degrees of Harriet Granville, who has appeared in several of my books.

photo: Raphael Coffey

Happy summer! Summer may not officially start for another ten days, but it already feels in a full swing. The Merola Opera Program, where I spend much of my life when I’m not writing, welcomed a new group of young artists last week. (There I am above with Mélanie when I got back from our Meet the Merolini event last Friday).

In around Merola events, I’m revising Malcolm and Suzanne’s next adventure. I haven’t blogged here in far too long, but i have been on History Hoydens talking about my trip to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and echoes of war in historical fiction.

ThatSummer

I’ve also found a bit of time to start summer reading. Last week, even though I really didn’t have time for it, I raced through my wonderful friend Lauren Willig’s wonderful new novel That Summer. Moving back and forth in time between 2009 and 1849, with pre-Raphelite painters and wonderful old English house full of secrets, it’s a fabulous treat for lovers of historical fiction and historical mysteries.

Hope everyone’s summer is off to a wonderful start and includes time for reading. What’s on your summer reading list?

 

 

 

 

 

I spent the weekend before last immersed in my Merola Opera Program life at our annual Spring Benefit Gala. This year’s theme was “A Night in New Orleans”, very festive and fun. It was a long day, beginning with setting up the silent auction and ending with packing up after the after party and getting to our hotel room just before two am. But though it was definitely not a writing day, this sort of event always makes me think about Suzanne/Mélanie and Malcolm/Charles’s world. From the, in Regency parlance, crush in the auction room to the formal dinner, the concert (a musicale) to the dancing after (all in a gown that grazed the floor) it was certainly more similar to their world than my typical Saturday night of a quiet dinner with friends.

Here, in pictures, is a summary of the day.

 

Upon arrival, Mel was very at home at our room at the Stanford Court.

Mélanie gave me a good excuse for a break while setting at the silent auction at the Fairmont Hotel.

Ready for the event to start

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

photo: Drew Altizer

At the after party.

Back at the hotel

Back at the hotel

TracyMelHotelClose

A relaxing brunch the next day.