Curiosity: forget “Cherchez la femme” (Look for the woman.) “Cherchez l’histoire.” (Look for the story.)
It’s been nearly a month since my last post; I’ve been busy flogging–both literally and figuratively.
My friend Carole and I got to be supernumeraries (what extras are called in operas) in Act III of Portland Opera’s just concluded production of Verdi’s Falstaff. I’m the woman on the left, in the photo above, the one whose face you can’t see at all. Fastaff, gloriously sung by Eduardo Chama, sang “Ai! Ai! Mi pento! ” (“Ow! Ow! I repent!”) three times as we flailed away.
They also let me write about being a “super,” as guest-blogger on Opera Beat on the Portland Opera website. If you haven’t already, please check out Adult Super-vision: On the set with supernumerary Diana Harris , Falstaff: More mischief than we bargained for, frankly and Falstaff: Even more mischief . The orchestra and cast were fabulous, I’m sorry not to have a few more opportunities to be right in the middle of it.
Meanwhile, I had submitted a recent piece to the Willamette Writers summer contest and Voicecatcher, a journal of women’s voices & visions. Voicecatcher responded that they’d like me to work with an editor to prepare it for their website. The catch is, pieces for their website must be no more than 1000 words and my piece is just over 2000 words. I’m accustomed to working within the Procrustean bed of word limits, but I had no idea how to cut the thing by ~60%. Fortunately, Marlene, my assigned editor didn’t either. She proposed, instead, that we run it as a “two- or three-parter.” The chief editor thought Marlene’s idea was brilliant; so that’s what we’re doing.
Meanwhile, Dell Isham, a member of my writing critique group, asked me to copy-edit his new novel, Knight’s Gold–a fascinating story involving state politics and Confederate sympathizers in Oregon–who knew? I’m about two-thirds finished. I wish I had the imagination to invent wonderful adventure stories about things that I know something about. But, instead, I’m trying to figure out an engaging way to structure my memoir.
And I won’t be working on that or posting any more blogs until we return from our impending trip–in about a month.