Monday, June 1, 2009


We bought our dining room table about ten years ago. The first thing I loved about it was the shape. I'd always wanted a round table so that diners could see everyone else while they ate. Round tables promote conversation and cause us to linger even after our plates are empty.

Saturday night we wouldn't have needed a round table. Kathi arrived in mid-afternoon so our conversation began on the screen porch with glasses of ginger white tea. Our backyard is the prettiest this time of year. The roses bloom so abundantly, they distract attention away from the weeds. Thank goodness! It wouldn't have mattered anyway. We were busy talking about our current projects. Both of us had recently sent our manuscripts to our editors and we were sharing that light feeling writers get when their manuscript is off their desk. It is a sort of false sense of relief because we know the manuscripts will return to us again.

I told Kathi about a thread that I'd added to my historical novel. I hadn't meant to share because I want her to read the book (again) when it's published. But we both agreed that sharing at this late stage is not harmful. It's that early stage when writers haven't put pen to paper and they want to talk out their books. Usually when they do, they never write the story.

At schools, I often tell young writers, "Save the energy for the page." Then Kathi told me about a friend whose dad was a minister. When her friend would ask, "Daddy, what are you going to preach about this Sunday?" her dad would say, "Oh, I can't tell you or the devil will steal it!"

I love that!

An hour or so later we moved to the kitchen so that I could prepare the meal. We popped in Kathi's son Cooper's wonderful new CD and chatted while I chopped tarragon and shallots.

We toasted Kathi's Newbery Honor and ate dinner in the dining room. Then we returned to the screen porch for Shannon's delicious chocolate mousse.

I don't know if Emily Post (or the Countess) would approve of my gift choice for Kathi's departure, but since Kathi wrote the delightful picture book, Watermelon Day I think a watermelon was the perfect thing to send on the road with her.

My hope to each of you this summer is to have a moveable meal with a good friend. And if you are a writer with a great story to tell, don't let the devil steal it!


  1. What a great pinch of wisdom, Kimberly! "Don't let the devil steal it!" Love it! Sounds like you and Kathi had a delightful visit. And that mousse really looked yummy!

  2. Crystal, I met Kathi a couple of weeks before my book sold. And the nice thing about this business is you do run into people on the trail. Kathi is the reason some of us meet for a writing retreat once a year. She's been a great part of my journey so it was such a special treat to have her visit my home.

    Travis--wise words. I just might give ever summer visitor a watermelon to leave home with.

  3. Would it be possible to get that Chocolate Mousse Recipe? Pretty Please!!