Mar 22, 2009

Susan interviewed on "52 Weeks To Find Him"

My Friend Neenah launched a website, "52 Weeks To Find Him," to try to find her Mister Right. She ended up on Good Morning America and all sorts of news sites, but in the process is asking her friends (married and single) for advice on finding the right guy.

She interviewed me about some of the stuff in my book relating to dating. Here's the video, enjoy!

Mar 15, 2009

There's a pink diamond of the heart?

Larry and I love our new town. A little village center, an ice cream store where kids hang out, and two indie coffee houses! But while Director Frank Capra may very well have based his Bedford Falls on Sierra Madre, he left out the Topanga part of this place.

Larry used to live in a cabin up one of our canyons, and he said it's a lot like Big Sur: hippies, VW buses, lookouts to spot the fuzz so everyone can put out their peace pipes. We saw some of the Big Sur element at the Wistaria festival today. But Friday while in the indie coffee house, I picked up a free newspaper that was sort of like Whole Life Times. Or High Times. Or a Whole Lotta High Life Times. I had to cut out this ad.

You too can enter the Sanctuary of the Pink Diamond of the Heart. You can also build the new Sacred Geometric Personal Energy fields.
But I'm guessing it may involve a whole lot of peace piping.

Mar 11, 2009

Billy Collins on "OMG"

I've only recently come to know Billy Collins and his poetry. Then last weekend at the IAM Encounter, there he was. Reading his poetry. He's like a cross between Coleridge and Steven Wright. He's my new hero.

Here are a few favorites.


Not only in church
and nightly by their bedsides
do young girls pray these days

Wherever they go,
prayer is woven into their talk
like a bright thread of awe

Even at the pedestrian mall
outbursts of praise
spring unbidden from their glossy lips.


“You are the bread and the knife,
The crystal goblet and the wine...
--Jacques Crickillon

You are the bread and the knife,
the crystal goblet and the wine.
You are the dew on the morning grass
and the burning wheel of the sun.
You are the white apron of the baker,
and the marsh birds suddenly in flight.

However, you are not the wind in the orchard,
the plums on the counter,
or the house of cards.
And you are certainly not the pine-scented air.
There is just no way that you are the pine-scented air.

It is possible that you are the fish under the bridge,
maybe even the pigeon on the general's head,
but you are not even close
to being the field of cornflowers at dusk.

And a quick look in the mirror will show
that you are neither the boots in the corner
nor the boat asleep in its boathouse.

It might interest you to know,
speaking of the plentiful imagery of the world,
that I am the sound of rain on the roof.

I also happen to be the shooting star,
the evening paper blowing down an alley
and the basket of chestnuts on the kitchen table.

I am also the moon in the trees
and the blind woman's tea cup.
But don't worry, I'm not the bread and the knife.
You are still the bread and the knife.
You will always be the bread and the knife,
not to mention the crystal goblet and--somehow--the wine.


I am the dog you put to sleep,
as you like to call the needle of oblivion,
come back to tell you this simple thing:
I never liked you--not one bit.

When I licked your face,
I thought of biting off your nose.
When I watched you toweling yourself dry,
I wanted to leap and unman you with a snap.

I resented the way you moved,
your lack of animal grace,
the way you would sit in a chair to eat,
a napkin on your lap, knife in your hand.

I would have run away,
but I was too weak, a trick you taught me
while I was learning to sit and heel,
and--greatest of insults--shake hands without a hand.

I admit the sight of the leash
would excite me
but only because it meant I was about
to smell things you had never touched.

You do not want to believe this,
but I have no reason to lie.
I hated the car, the rubber toys,
disliked your friends and, worse, your relatives.

The jingling of my tags drove me mad.
You always scratched me in the wrong place.
All I ever wanted from you
was food and fresh water in my metal bowls.

While you slept, I watched you breathe
as the moon rose in the sky.
It took all of my strength
not to raise my head and howl.

Now I am free of the collar,
the yellow raincoat, monogrammed sweater,
the absurdity of your lawn,
and that is all you need to know about this place

except what you already supposed
and are glad it did not happen sooner--
that everyone here can read and write,
the dogs in poetry, the cats and the others in prose.

Angry Conversations With God hits store shelves today!

Today is the day I've been waiting for, for some time. And it's kinda surreal.

Never while writing did I think I was saying too much, being too open or too vulnerable. I felt like I was just telling the truth. Judging by the way people responded to my writing, or hearing me read/perform, it was a good kind of vulnerable.

But today I'm thinking, "WHAT ON EARTH HAVE I DONE?" I've picked up on one or two stray words of fellows and have second guessed myself.

I think it's probably "opening night jitters."

Anyway, I wrote the book that was in me. And you can get it, starting tomorrow! At a bookstore or website near you.

Actually, there are several dozen bloggers who are blogging about my book, between now and March 20. Many of them are going to give away free copies on their blogs! Check 'em out here...

Matthew Paul TurnerList Of The DayEric MetaxasVictorya Michaels RogersJosh ShippMark JosephAndrea AskowitzBilly IveyBryan AllainCaroline SprinkelChristy TennantDan MerchantDiane NienhuisHelton GoinsJack LeggJared BlankenshipJenifer James HallJohn FortsonJoy KennellyKaren PowerLisa MiltonLori RooneyMatt McKechniePenny CarothersSally Lloyd-JonesSean GaffneySpencer SpellmanWendy MelchiorAmy KopeckyMichael MeulsteeCharles Roberts

Mar 10, 2009

Susan's Radio Interview on 107.1

I just finished my radio interview with "Ian & Margery," on 107.1FM, Minneapolis/St Paul. You can listen to it here.

Mar 9, 2009

Susan on CNN, On Radio three times!

So I was on CNN Sunday morning. It came up very quickly, and unfortunately it was live from Atlanta. SO unless you were on the east coast, and up on the first day of daylight savings, you didn't get to see it. I'm trying to procure the footage or at least a link.

Meanwhile, I have two radio interviews scheduled, talking about my book, "Angry Conversations With God." Listen online at these links!

Tuesday March 10
1) WFMP 107.1 Minneapolis, the Ian & Margery Show, Hour 4. Listen at to my segment Here.

Friday March 13
2) Word FM Pittsburgh, the John Hall Afternoon show
4:15 pm Eastern Daylight time (1:15 pacific)
Listen Live Online. Or to John Hall's page and look for "Listen Live" button/

Tuesday March 24

WNIV 5:10pm Eastern Time
Host John Hall

Mar 4, 2009

Angry Convos in New York

I hate using "convo" as a contraction for "conversation." But convo is easier to type. So there it is. Last weekend I had the good fortune to present my book as a solo show in New York. Well I am working on a solo show, something i can tour in lieu of just showing up at a book store and signing books and reading a chapter.

My friend Christy Tennant lobbied to have me present at the IAM Encounter in Tribeca. Also in the line up were Nicholas Wolsterstorff, a braniac who teaches on Philosophical Theology and Art at Yale. Billy Collins the erstwhile poet laureate, and Helen Sung, a jazz pianist who's won Kennedy Center awards.

Can you say, Freak OUT! I was pretty freaked out. I would be trying my new material on them. Taking a 65,000 word book and putting it into a 40 minute show was gonna be tough. It's not just paring words; they are two different genres. Like for a solo show, you can't go on for days describing a house. Unless the book is "Gone With The Wind." But no one has done a solo show on Scarlett O'Hara. Uh oh. Now someone is going to do that.

Anyway, the transition between talking narrative to dialog between two characters (and when you re playing them both) ... it feels like you're jumping over a crevasse, and you may just fall down into that ice canyon and never be seen again. Only you do it on stage in front of hundreds of people and you'd wish you cold be unseen.

I had a great audience, the material worked, and I got to teach a class on non-fiction writing the next day. That was blast.

And then Billy Collins read the following evening and pretty much blew everyone away. And he both shamed and inspired me. Shamed me to think what I'd done the evening before approached poetic; and inspired me to feel some kind of lyricism toward the wet quiet streets I passed by on the way home.

Here's a little Billy for you. Oh to write that succinctly and well.