Bookology is delighted to welcome author Sarah Sullivan for an October Skinny Dip. Look for Sarah’s A Day for Skating, illustrated by Madeline Valentine (Candlewick Press, available November 5th), a lovely book to read out loud before you go skating or to explain what skating is. Sarah’s picture book Passing the Music Down is a much-praised story about old-time fiddlers inspired by the lives of renowned fiddlers Melvin Wine and Jake Krack. It’s one of our cherished books. In All That’s Missing, Sarah’s novel, young Arlo’s grandfather is slipping farther into dementia, raising the specter of foster care. Sarah is a thoughtful, wise storyteller.
My philosophy: One day at a time. Do the best you can, but take time to be kind to others along the way.
I don’t believe in: saying “it can’t be done,” until you’ve at least tried, (unless a task involves exposing yourself or others to physical risk).
The movie I watch when I want to laugh: Nobody’s Fool.
If I could say one thing to my twenty-years-younger self, it would be: Hang in there. It’s going to get better.
I tell myself every day: Today you’re going to work on your novel, ride your bike or walk at least three miles, fix something healthy for dinner and stay away from the chocolate. I never actually check all four items off the list. Two is a good day. Three, I count as a win.
What’s on my nightstand:
- The Best American Short Stories 2011, ed. Geraldine Brooks
- The Pioneers, by David McCullough
- The Time of Green Magic, by Hilary McKay
- Essays of E.B. White
- Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout (okay, it’s not there yet but it will be, as soon as my pre-order is delivered!)
My hero is: I have several heroes. Ruth Bader Ginsburg is certainly one of them.
The scariest book I’ve ever read: Bag of Bones by Stephen King. The first time I read it, I was by myself at home and had reached a particularly unsettling point in the story, when the bell rang and there was a policeman at my door. He told me someone had just robbed my next-door neighbor and he wanted to know if I had seen or heard anything unusual. It was a very strange afternoon.
I yearn to: visit Scotland and Ireland. I want to see the castle in Edinburgh. I want to see the Shetland Islands. I want to wander the streets of Dublin and see the view from the cliffs of Moher. I want to see Cork where my great-grandfather was born.
The food I can’t resist: POTATO CHIPS. Can’t let them in the house unless someone promises to eat them all. Too tempting.
The piece of clothing in my closet I can’t let go: An Eddie Bauer raincoat that I bought at a clearance sale for twelve dollars. Sadly, I had to toss it out a few weeks ago. It was falling apart. But, for twenty-nine years it was the perfect coat to stuff in a bag or throw in the car for any occasion. I will never be able to replace it.
What I do when I want to feel joy: All I have to do is go outside. Taking a walk or riding a bike through my neighborhood cheers me up immediately. I can ride my bike in one direction to a city park or in the opposite direction to watch the sun rise over the York River. What more could you want?