Fifty Odd Women Writers over 50 Blog Tour
Fifty Odd is featuring women writers over 50 each week for 50 weeks. Each guest answers questions about her writing subjects, her writing inspiration, her purpose for writing, and her current books and upcoming writing projects.
This week Laurie Boris is the featured writer.
Women Writers over 50 … Laurie Boris
Laurie Boris is a freelance writer, editor, proofreader, and former graphic designer. She is the author of three novels: The Joke’s on Me, Drawing Breath, and Don’t Tell Anyone. When not playing with the universe of imaginary people in her head, she enjoys baseball, cooking, reading, and helping aspiring novelists as a contributing writer and editor for IndiesUnlimited.com. She lives in New York’s Hudson Valley.
Links to Laurie Boris’s books and websites:
Laurie’s newest novel:
And previous releases by Laurie Boris:
Laurie Boris … Women Writers over 50
When did you decide you wanted to be a writer?
I didn’t decide as much as evolve. At first I wrote because it was fun, because it was a way to let off steam, because I wanted to see if I could write a novel. Then I wanted to learn how to write a better novel. From there I was hooked.
What or who inspired you to write?
I’ve been writing since I could hold a crayon, pretty much. But that first big “aha” spark came in my mid-twenties. I’d just quit an unfulfilling job as an assistant art director of an ad agency. My boyfriend at the time, a musician, said, “What are you going to do with your days?” His tone made it pretty clear that I wouldn’t be spending them with him. Nothing like a dare to light a fire under me. Between freelance gigs, I started writing. Really bad short stories at first, but I got better. I liked challenging myself.
What do you hope to accomplish with your writing? (i.e….save the world, make people laugh, share knowledge, make a living, etc.)
I want to entertain readers, show them life through someone else’s eyes, take them out of their pain for a while, and make them laugh…depending on the book.
What is your favorite part…(paragraph…page…line) from one of your books?
Estelle had found the first lump by accident on the morning of Adam’s wedding. The night before, Charlie had given her a pill and she’d overslept. She’d rushed through her makeup, painting on eyebrows and coloring her cheeks. She’d been zipping herself into her dress, but it didn’t sit right in the bosom. As she slipped it this way and that and adjusted her bra, she felt something hard and uneven in her right breast, like the end of a chicken bone. She thought about all those medical shows, the books she’d read, and the women she’d known who’d gone through such things. They compared the size of their tumors to food: a pea, an orange, a grapefruit. This lump was nothing that familiar and nothing that round. This was like a knuckle, a dagger, a hand grenade. She sat on the edge of the bed and smoked three cigarettes in a row. The phone rang twice and each time she just sat on her damask spread and smoked.
The first time the answering machine picked up, the caller didn’t leave a message. That was Adam. Adam didn’t leave messages.
The second time it was Charlie.
“Hi, Mom. Just seeing when you want me to pick you up.”
This is meshugge, she thought. People do this every day. People got married. Other people dressed up and traveled for hours to see the bride and groom recite their vows and step on the wine glass. They ate fancy food and slipped checks into the groom’s pockets. They smiled, wished them well, gossiped about the in-laws, and debated the couple’s chances in the car on the way home.
Estelle didn’t know about that Liza. There was something wrong with the way she was raised by her father, like a boy. Adam needed a woman. But she seemed like a smart girl, a practical girl. Estelle hoped to God Liza was smart enough to figure out how to make the marriage work.
The phone rang again. If she didn’t answer, the boys would think something was wrong and rush over. She couldn’t tell them, not on Adam’s wedding day. Whatever her opinions about Liza, Adam seemed happy. She wouldn’t make this the day he found out the time bomb went off.
It was Charlie, asking how she’d slept.
Fine. She’d slept fine. “Your father,” she said, “may he rest in peace, he couldn’t drop dead on the golf course like everybody else? He couldn’t go quietly in his sleep? No, he had to have a massive coronary in the middle of synagogue on Yom Kippur and make the newspapers and scar the entire community for life.”
“I’m sure he didn’t do it on purpose, Mom. Although if you have to go, it might as well be memorable.”
“Adam could have gotten married anywhere. A catering hall. Or that beautiful park on the river. But no, he had to pick Temple Beth Make-the-rest-of-your-mother’s-hair-fall-out.”
“You need more Valium?”
Estelle lit another cigarette. “Bring the bottle.”
What have you learned from writing?
It’s hard work at times, but deeply fulfilling. Nothing I’ve experienced—the lousy jobs, the bad relationships, the less-than-great choices—has been for naught. It’s all writing material.
What are you working on now…or what is your next writing project?
I’m lightening up a bit, literally and figuratively, by writing a novel set in the background of the weight loss industry.
Women Writers over 50
Thank you to all the women writers over 50 who are participating in the Fifty Odd blog tour. I am very honored to learn more about these talented women. Please support them by buying their books.