Thanks to all my dear friends, former students, colleagues and the lovely ladies of Lambda Theta Alpha for turning out this afternoon. It was a very nice group and I was happy to see people I haven’t seen in months (even years!). I read “Muchacha (After Jamaica)” and “Failed Secrets”–two of my favorite stories that happen to be very short and thus, book-signing/reading friendly.
“Muchacha” is modeled after Jamaica Kincaid’s amazing story “Girl” from At the Bottom of The River. Reading “Girl” inspired me to create my own “Cuban” version since I could hear, quite vividly, all the lessons and messages that had bombarded my girlhood. And of course, our mothers aren’t the only ones compelled to give us unsolicited advice and warnings–cousins, aunts, neighbors, family friends and so on. Everyone, especially the older woman, is quite easily encouraged to provide direction and guidance. And it’s a good thing–generally.
The other story I read, “Failed Secrets” is more serious and about a woman who leaves Cuba in the 1950s and creates a new life for herself in “el norte” because her life on the island is precarious.
So, today marks the beginning of a busy season for me. Next Thursday, I’ll be at Inkwood Books in Tampa for a reading and signing followed by events pretty much every week thereafter culminating in the Miami International Book Fair. I’ll be at Michigan State at the FemRhet Conference, at Winthrop University in South Carolina, at the downtown Orange County Public Library and Georgetown University. Please do check the Calendar of Events tab at the top of this page for all the specifics on time and place. Looking forward to meeting more folks and sharing stories.