Intrigued, I perused her site. Sounds fun! I decided, and signed up for the six-week cyber-fest, which is designed to connect unpublished writers with one another, and with potential agents and small presses.
First on the agenda is what Deana Barnhart has termed the “Meet and Greet” bloghop, in which we are directed to post today—Monday, Sept. 3rd—a mini-bio about ourselves, along with the answers to seven questions posed by Ms. Barnhart. The idea is everyone then hops around to all the other participants’ blogs to check out their Meet and Greet answers, and all the writers get to know a little about each other. Cool, eh?
Okey, dokey, here goes!
Leslie Karst is my name. Leslie means “low meadow” in Scottish; karst is the geologic term for limestone sink-holes. At five foot two inches, I stand relatively low to the ground. Make what you like of this.
My favorite Beatle when I was ten was Paul; later in college I switched allegiance to John. I adore anything with cream or butter in it, especially Explorateur cheese (which has a really cool, retro rocket ship on the wrapping) and sauce Béarnaise. I have a mint-green Bianchi Veloce road bike named Blanche (rhymes with “ranch”) that I love even more than my 10-inch Italian chef’s knife.
I used to spend my days drafting legal briefs, but now that I’m retired from the law I get to write fun things like mystery novels and essays about food and cooking.
Meet and Greet Questions and Answers:
Where do you write?
At a large desk in the study. The desk has to be large because it hosts a printer and scanner, as well as my laptop and variety of knick-knacks, including: a raccoon skull my friend Julie found while repairing her deck, some really bitchin’ quartz rocks I brought back from Alaska, and a photo of my dad with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (See also answer to next question, below.)
Quick. Go to your writing space, sit down and look to your left. What is the first thing you see?
A stack of books, containing, among other things, Pidgin Grammar by Sakoda and Siegel, Roget’s New Pocket Thesaurus, Ngaio Marsh’s Opening Night, and Murder in Paradise by Loos and Castberg. A bit farther to the left is Ziggy, our Jack Russell mix, snoozing atop the pillows on the couch.
Favorite time to write?
Mornings, after my bike ride or Ziggy’s walk.
Drink of choice while writing?
When writing, do you listen to music or do you need complete silence?
I need silence when I write, as I’m easily distracted. That’s why I have to close the study door when Robin has the Arts Channel playing on the TV.
What was your inspiration for your latest manuscript and where did you find it?
Hot lava, on the Big Island of Hawai‘i.
What's your most valuable writing tip?
Something I was taught the very first day of law school: Banish showoff words like “utilize” from your writing; the simpler “use” is always the better choice.
I will keep you posted with further GUTGAA updates. And any fellow GUTGAA participants who read this, if you post a comment I’ll be sure to check out your blog, too!
Thanks Deana, for creating and hosting the blogfest!