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Author Karleen Koen

Big weekend in Houston. Started off with my “The Path to Publishing” class at Rice University’s Glasscock School on Saturday. Excellent group of students with lots of great energy, promising book ideas, and thoughtful questions. Sometimes I wonder if I get more out of the class than my students do — I always walk away reenergized and optimistic about writing, books, and publishing.

Afterward, I stopped at Brazos Bookstore, one of the best indie stores in the country and bumped into former Austinite and fellow “bookie” Jeremy Ellis, who’s now the manager at Brazos. What a coup for Brazos! Jeremy is an old-fashioned bookseller with stellar instincts.

Before leaving on Sunday, I met up with one of my favorite writer friends, the wise and wonderful Karleen Koen. In the midst of our catching up, we were discussing the “mushy middle” problem that novelists encounter (I’m raising my hands, folks!), and Karleen put it in perspective: “Writing scenes is a ballsy act,” adding something along the lines that you just have to go for it and not hold back.

So I’m taking all of that with me and definitely will be going for it later this week when I get back to working on Chapter 16, the point of my novel where things are rather wonky.

Love you, Houston! Be back soon!