Hmmm, I am usually game for this sort of thing and love to help other writers. But in the first half of my life, I never lived anywhere big enough to have a suburb. Now I live in the heart of Manhattan and love it. In between, I lived in a big sprawling LA-like city, Phoenix, where the burbs are an indistinguishable part of the urban sprawl. So I don't think I have anything to contribute. Best of luck on the project!
thank you for adding me. Your project reminds me of my book "Tu's doch" (Just do it) that was published with a German publisher that concentrates on how-to and inspirational books. A lot of their books are sold to women who find themselves in the suburbs, maybe with a child or two, and now try to find new inspiration, a new way of living, of making this different environment "theirs" and making it nurture them.
Hi Denise, I really love the concept of your project. Both my husband and I grew up in the suburbs but now live in a more urban environment. When we visit home or friends in the suburbs we're sometimes tempted to romanticize the big yards but we stop ourselves, remembering the loneliness we often felt even as kids and suspected our mothers felt more so. I think urban communities tend to be more accepting of differences--and inclusive of different classes, races etc.--so there's not the perceived pressure to fit in or as much risk of feeling excluded. And being able to walk to company--a coffee shop, for ex. means a lot to me as a writer. Anyway, can't wait to read your book....
Hi Denise, and welcome to She Writes indeed! Totally happy to be interviewed, thank you for asking -- I do like my life -- but the thing is, I don't live in the suburbs! I live in Brooklyn. I grew up in the Chicago suburbs, though... All best, Deborah
As someone who grew up in the suburbs but became a full-fledged NYC urbanite who can't imagine ever going back, I am fascinated by your blog/book concept. Thank you for friending me - I am so curious to read more!
When I moved to the suburbs 12 years ago, I had no idea it was going to be this tough, and the worst thing about living here is that the other women make it look so easy. I was overwhelmed by all of my responsibilities; yet, I was underwhelmed by the actual work. I soaked in the tub each night to get a few minutes alone and cried because I was lonely.
I was so freaked out by my new suburban life that one day I ran away from home. Yes, I literally "ran" away from home, like a little kid.
I bolted out the front door and just started running. I ran weaving through the neighbors front yards and back yards like a criminal under pursuit. I ran and ran and ran until I was finally stopped by a huge privacy fence. And that is where I sat on the ground and cried and cried and cried.
Eventually, I stood up and started the long, weaving, walk back home. All I could think of as I traced my way back home through my neighbors beautiful green lawns was "What are those women doing in those four bedroom colonials? And why are they so damn happy?"
Eventually, I picked-up the phone and asked one woman if I could spend time with her. To my delight, she welcomed me into her home with my camera and tape recorder. Then she introduced me to more women. Each shared a part of their life story, some big stuff and lots and lots of the fascinating little stuff.
My reinvention project, Success In The Suburbs, a blog and book-in-the-works, is the result of those meetings.
Shannon, thanks for your latest comment re the requirement for content within the nature writing genre. What we don't want are more descriptions of shimmering sunsets etc. I'm paraphrasing Mark Tredinnick below, an…"