Sunday, November 7, 2010

Mary-Mary, Never Contrary

Today was the Ing NYC Marathon and I’m proud to report that a former student of mine crossed her first marathon finish line. Good for you, Mary-Mary! Her name’s actually just Mary, but we call her Mary-Mary because she babysat the boys when they were little, and my younger son called her that. He did not like us to leave him with babysitters (even though it was usually just so Mark and I could practice with our band in our detached garage), but Mary broke through to him and became his “Mary-Mary.” She was, for the record, never even a little contrary. When Mark and I ran the NYC Marathon three years ago for Exercise the Right to Read, Mary-Mary joined a small group of us at a restaurant on Park Avenue, where I rejuvenated my exhausted body with a bowl of soup. I wish I could have been there for her today. Crossing your first marathon finish line really does make you feel like you can do anything—at least that’s what I’m hoping she’s feeling tonight. Anthony Edwards (who played Mr. Loski in Flipped) also ran NYC today as a vehicle to raise funds for his charity, Shoe4Africa. Mark and I met him for the first time when Flipped was being filmed in Michigan, and since I happened to be wearing my San Francisco marathon shirt, the conversation turned to running pretty quickly. He was fairly new to the sport and had definitely been bitten by the running bug. He’d do a take for a scene for the movie, then come over to us on the sidelines and talk more about running. Then he’d go back and do another take, then return to talk running. It was fun to have such an immediate bond with him. So congrats to Tony too! And Shalane Flanagan…wow! So enough about running, right? What about Night of Skulls? Well, I’m very happy to report that as of this morning it is “done” and submitted to Nancy. It’s 289 pages of headlong adventure woven through the bony fingers of Death. Plus, handing out nicknames like El Zarape, Ruby-Red, the Oversized Eggplant, Shovel Man, Teddy Bear, and the Vampire, Sammy is…well, Sammy! And it was great to spend more time with Billy Pratt. (I love that boy!) So I’m *big sigh of relief* really happy with the way it all turned out, and that it’s turned in. And I’ve got to tell you…I am SO looking forward to NOT sitting at this desk. I have so much to catch up on, and as long as it requires me to stand, stretch, lift, or move, I am looking forward to it. So until next week (when I hope to finally share some info on The Running Dream and the January book tour), thanks for checking in. I’m glad you do!


neonina05 said...

Congrats to Mary-Mary (how old was your son when he gave her this nickname?)!

I'm looking forward to The Running Dream! And I've gotta say, Wendelin, every time you update, you give some more information away, and I die a little more inside with anticipation for the next book! I'm totally looking forward to it!

Also, I've recently gotten my friend, Sarah, addicted to the SK series. She just as 2 more to read, and it'll take her about three days tops, with school. It's sad how it took her just a month to read the whole series and now we'll be waiting for a year for the next book ...

Anyway, Happy Reading (and Writing!)
~Your biggest fan,
(believe it or not, with some of the people on here, it's hard to beat, but I am your BIGGEST fan, I swear!)

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

Thanks Tessa :-) Don't mean to torture you, just hope to give you something to look forward to. Thanks for getting your friend into them. Sounds like she's devoured the books! Have a great week!

Unknown said...

I indeed had an AMAZING experience! Thank you Wendelin for being an inspiration and friend! Few things compare to such an accomplishment. I fondly remember watching your marathon just after I moved to NYC and am proud to have followed in running it as well!

I CAN'T WAIT for The Running Dream!


Anonymous said...

I too cannot wait for Sammy Keyes 14! I hate the suspense of waiting! Ahh!
Okay, I'm calming down now.
Congradualtions to Mary-Mary! I would never be able to run a marathon. I do not run willingly, trust me :)
I've tried to get all my friends into Sammy Keyes, but I discovered the sereis too late in life :( No one (but me) wants to be caught reading children's books in high school. But I have no shame!
And I'm still trying...
Can't wait for more on the tour in Naperville!

Elizabeth said...

Congratulations to Mary-Mary, that is an amazing accomplishment. And I'm glad that you got to connect and talk with Anthony Edwards, it sounds like it was fun! I just googled Shalane Flanagan, and her name seemed a little familiar, so when I read about her participation in the Olympics I was like OH!!! Also read this, "American Shalane Flanagan was second place winner at the ING New York City Marathon which took place on Sunday November 7, 2010. It is the first time in 20 years that an American woman has been so successful in this marathon." :D
YAY, you spent more time with BILLY, which means we'll get to spend more time with him! Thank you. I. love. Billy. Pratt. Congratulations to YOU for turning NoS in! And thanks for the info, I can't wait to learn more about The Running Dream!

P.S. The other night, I was chatting with my best friend and we were talking about how pictures can capture a moment, but you don't need them, the moment itself is what is wonderful, and one of your posts popped into my head, so I looked it up and shared it with him, and he thought it was "so awesome" and said that he was going to "favorite it so I can see it anytime I want". I just wanted to say that your words have stuck with me, and inspire me, and help me when I get caught up in what I cannot change or what is out of reach. And now, they've touched someone else. Thanks for everything you do,

N3WYORKD3VIL said...

Oh yeah...the marathon. I didn't have to go to church cuz of the streets being blocked and stuff...Walkiria is gonna kill me next week...

Mary, Mary, quite contrary
how does your garden grow..

I'm just gonna stop right now before I'm cursed and keep recitng nursery rhymes..

Pfft...when I typed 'Mary', I accidently typed 'Mark'. And that just reminds me of how much Mark from my class keeps bugging me. And that just reminds me of school...and some way or another, I connect that to Sammy Keyes..somehow. I don't know how...

Pooja Dimba said...

Awh how cute.. the Mary-Mary thing..
So is there any date that the SK 14 will come out?

Raisa Karim said...

OMG!! i LOVE you!!!!
have u read the hunger games?
i TOTALLY recommend it.
here is my website--


Raisa Karim said...

congrats to Mary Mary! have fun writing the next SK!!!!

Sam said...

AAAAAHHH!!!! W8!!!! im exited 4 sk 14 but i havent read 13 yet!!!! EEEKKKK!!!!!! my mom said she'll take me 2 borders over and over but she never does!!!!! (btw i luv ur name!)

Sam said...

awwwwwwwww...... how old ws ur son wen he gave her the nick-name? it sooooo cute!!!!

Alexa said...

That must be great to be pretty much done with The Night of Skulls! 'The Oversized Eggplant' that's so funny! Running sounds fun! Although, not right now.....I am lucky to get off the couch, i have a cold.........anyways, who cares about the germs inside of me driving me crazy? Everybody please cheer on my white blood cells (the little infection fighters). GO WHITE BLOOD CELLS! GO! FIGHT! WIN!

"Mary-Mary" that's a cute nickname :D. How old was your son when he gave her that nickname? I love writing, I have written some stuff of my own. Fiction is so hard to write! Plot structure is so hard for me to keep in line. I would love to become an editor (for like a publishing company) but office work would drive me crazy. I love editing things but I have to do something active!Who knows what i'll end up doing. It's a mystery and forever will be.

I'll be waiting for your next post and Sammy keyes to come out! See ya later! *Alexa*:D