Friday, August 18, 2017

Total Eclipse of the Sun

It's next week, and it's going to be amazing, and it's going to be ON MY BIRTHDAY!

But. . . what if it's not amazing? What if I'm in the totality zone, but not in the absolute dead center? What if the day is rainy? Or completely overcast? What if there is a total eclipse of the sun, and there is no sun there to be seen?

Because a once-in-a-century total eclipse of the sun that falls on MY BIRTHDAY can't be allowed to be a total bust, I've come up with a lovely plan to ensure that it will be fabulous, anyway. We are going to drive on Sunday from my home in Boulder, Colorado, all the way to Red Cloud, Nebraska, which happens to be the home town of Willa Cather. Willa Cather's Second Home is maintained as a bed-and-breakfast by the Willa Cather Foundation, and that's where we're going to stay, and I've made a reservation for Willa Cather's room where I will sleep in Willa Cather's bed.

This made me think of ways I can make my writing life be fabulous even if the final product ends up, in the eyes of the world, being a total bust (e.g., eclipsed in my never-to-be-published drawer). Number one on the list, of course, is having as much sheer fun in the writing itself as possible. For me, this means sometimes giving myself the treat of going somewhere special to write, in the company of other fabulous children's book authors.

So today I'll be driving down to the Denver Botanic Gardens for a write-in (actually, we're calling it a "write-out") of some local children's book authors. I'm hoping that I'll draft a dazzling concluding chapter of my current work-in-progress. But even if the chapter doesn't turn out to be quite as dazzling as hoped, well, there I'll be in one of the loveliest spots I know, together with some of the smartest, kindest, and most supportive people I know. I may not achieve writing totality, but a total bust? Well, that is simply out of the question.
Where I'll be writing today. . . . 


  1. Is is exactly this sense of wonder and excitement in events that define those of us who write for children. Happy Birthday and may the eclipse live up to your expectations Claudia! I hope to be viewing it from the college campus planetarium where I went for undergrad studies.

  2. Darlene, I like your eclipse plans, too. And I love that in these dark and divisive times, the whole country is wild with excitement over a two-minute alignment of sun and moon.

  3. Have a great birthday! I'll try to remember to wave at you from Omaha, where I will be enjoying a day to myself and probably viewing the eclipse with an eclipse viewer made from a cereal box.

  4. Willa Cather!! Happy birthday, Claudia!

    1. I'm here in Red Cloud right now, and everything here is Cather, Cather, Cather - and I'm loving it!