It’s difficult being comfortable with yourself. It’s even more difficult when you’re disabled. It means knowing your limits intimately. It means running into a brick wall for your efforts and licking your wounds in the wake of your failure.
For me, it means learning what acceptance truly means. I’ve pinpointed my struggles; I’ve explored ways around them. But the more I embrace both my talents and my limitations, the more people latch onto only one or the other. Some have an image of who I should be — this smart, talented, enthusiastic girl — and when I tell them I can’t always be that girl, they call it a waste. They call me a waste.
Others wax rhapsodic about how I prove autism is no excuse for laziness or failure. I’m an inspiration, they say; I overcame my disability. Me? I just gape. After all my years of difficulty, the last thing I want is for people to use my experiences to put down others who struggle. What’s so inspirational about accepting your limitations? When did I overcome anything?
I never overcame. I incorporated.
Michael Sand Joins Abrams as New Publisher
New York, NY – August 19, 2014 – Michael Sand, Executive Editor at Little, Brown is joining ABRAMS as Vice President, Publisher, Adult Trade effective September 22.
“Michael Sand is the perfect candidate to continue to envision, shape, and drive our adult editorial programs at ABRAMS. In addition to his consummate editorial skill and taste, Sand is an expert on and adept at nonfiction publishing with a focus on narrative, biography, memoir, art, and photography, as well as lifestyle and, especially, cooking and food. His skills and taste are a rare mix in today’s trade books environment,” says Michael Jacobs, President and CEO of ABRAMS.
At Little, Brown since 2006, Sand founded an impressive cooking list that includes the James Beard Award–winning The Flavor Bible by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg and Eleven Madison Park: The Cookbook by Daniel Humm and Will Guidara as among the imprint’s bestsellers. Sand’s experience in publishing art, biography, and American history produced such standout titles as Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera by Ron Schick, the New York Times bestseller Find It in Everything by Drew Barrymore, and Cartographia: Mapping Civilizations by Vincent Virga and the Library of Congress. In addition, he has overseen the Ansel Adams publishing program, including the New York Times bestseller Ansel Adams: 400 Photographs and the perennial category-leading Ansel Adams wall and engagement calendars. Sand began his career at Aperture, where he worked for 10 years before spending six years at Bulfinch Press.
“I have long considered Abrams the gold standard for visual books in this country. I am delighted at the opportunity to work with their talented team, to build on past successes, and to seek out new opportunities in a rapidly changing marketplace. I couldn’t be happier,” says Michael Sand.
I’m trying to spread the word far and wide about my August 30 book event at the American Book Center in Amsterdam.
Despite being Dutch, my first novel Otherbound is written in English and published by an American publisher. This summer, I traveled to the US to promote my book there, and it’s received rave reviews from several US review outlets … and now it’s time to launch Otherbound in my home city of Amsterdam.
Oddly enough, this is about a hundred times more intimidating. Ha!
Please tell your Dutch fantasy-loving, YA-reading, or queer-lit-hooked friends that they’re more than welcome! I’ll be reading from Otherbound, answering audience questions, and talk with author/journalist Julie Phillips about the process of writing Otherbound, the need for diversity in novels, and the challenges a Dutch fantasy author faces getting published by a major US publisher. (As there’s limited seating available, it’s wise to make a reservation on the website.) Afterward, I’ll sign copies of the book.
Hope to see you there!
Ode to Bruschetta
I don’t think so stale bread
I sliced you gingerly to avoid a shattering crumble
I was indelicate with a garlic rub
I doused you with olive oil
And then some more
And then again
Onto the skillet, high heat flame
Your edges are going to burn
Too much salt, the good heirloom tomatoes that cost too much, fresh basil sloshed on top
More olive oil, why not
And then, no time to open the wine
Bresaola, Rucola, e Grana Padano Tramezzino
Makes 4 tramezzini
Mayonnaise, homemade or good-quality store-bought
8 slices soft white bread (about 3 1/2 inches/9 cm square), crusts removed
2 cups (40 g) arugula
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces (115 g) bresaola slices
1/2 cup (50 g) shaved Grana Padano
Spread a light layer of mayonnaise over one side of each bread slice.
Place the arugula in a medium bowl. Add the oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper, and toss to coat.
Divide the slices of bresaola evenly among 4 of the bread slices and arrange the arugula on top. Top with the cheese, then cover with the remaining bread slices, mayonnaise-side down. Cut each tramezzino in half and serve.
#tbt from the Abrams vault: Self-Portrait: U.S.A. by David Douglas Duncan (1969)
From Tumblr Food Blog to Published Cookbook:
One thought struck me as I flipped through my sister-in-law’s copy of The Forest Feast: Simple Vegetarian Recipes from My Cabin in the Woods.
This cookbook was made for Tumblr.
I loved the vivid visuals, beautiful typography and elegant simplicity. Later, I discovered this cookbook was partly made from Tumblr. Author and photographer Erin Gleeson (forestfeast) has blogged “photographic recipe illustrations” on Tumblr since 2011. I’m not a vegetarian, but the visual recipes were so striking, I had to order this cookbook. So far, my wife and I made the cauliflower cheese steaks. They were simply delicious.
Cover photo by Erin Gleeson for The Forest Feast
Author Cece Bell Talks About Her New Book, ‘El Deafo’
Going to school and making new friends can be tough. But going to school and making new friends while wearing a bulky hearing aid strapped to your chest? That requires superpowers! In this funny, poignant graphic novel memoir, author/illustrator Cece Bell chronicles her hearing loss at a young age and her subsequent experiences with the Phonic Ear, a very powerful—and very awkward—hearing aid.
The Phonic Ear gives Cece the ability to hear—sometimes things she shouldn’t—but also isolates her from her classmates. She really just wants to fit in and find a true friend, someone who appreciates her as she is. After some trouble, she is finally able to harness the power of the Phonic Ear and become “El Deafo, Listener for All.” And more importantly, declare a place for herself in the world and find the friend she’s longed for.
Great “Books Beneath the Bridge” reading on the Granite Prospect steps in Brooklyn Bridge Park last night featuring writers from Sackett Street Writers’ Workshop: Marie-Helene Bertino (pictured, bottom), Scott Cheshire, Robin Black, Courtney Elizabeth Mauk, and Julia Fierro (pictured, top).