Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving update

Happy Thanksgiving! Everyone in the family is home and cooking. Damian is making maple baked beans (he got up at 5:30 with me as I started the turkey); Sabrina made stuffing and is working on roast vegetables; Rhianon is making pumpkin corn bread and mashed potatoes; Leo made soup; David's helping everywhere; Owen is making "squash cigars"; and my nephew Peter is coming over to make green bean casserole. Our neighbors are coming over later with pies the kids helped make yesterday. What a blessing to have grown-up children who like to cook! I got to go back to bed and sleep in.

This has been an extremely productive period for me. I went on a long book tour/trip to Boulder, CO, which I still have to blog about. There I was hosted by Mary Golden of Cool Girls, a science and art club for girls in grades 1-5. I talked to Noyce Scholars from all over Colorado, ran a Lexicon Villages event in the Crestview School, visited two Cool Girls club sessions, and spoke at the Boulder Bookstore. Mary and I also attended a session of the Boulder Writers' Group, heard the Bioharmonics sing in a cafe, hiked a little, and visited a number of people working on getting more girls into science and computers. A very rich time at the edge of the mountains, mostly in the bright sunshine. I even learned about lenticular clouds.

There was even quiet time to write. I turned in the second draft of The Desperate Case of the Diamond Chip, which will be the first book in Tumblehome Learning's Galactic Academy of Science series. It's a mystery adventure about electronics, featuring science history and time travel. We're currently in a rush to get a galley of that book ready (and translated into Chinese!) in time for the Taiwan International Book Fair February 1st. We also expect to have two or three more books lined up for the fair, and we're planning to publish six books in 2012, including two science biographies, three science mysteries, and one science fiction graphic novel, all accompanied by hands-on activities. This is progress much faster than I originally expected. There are now eleven of us working on Tumblehome Learning in various capacities.

Since coming home, I've been working on a children's adaptation of The Man Behind the Microchip, Leslie Berlin's excellent biography of my father. Leslie and I will be working on this project together. Immersing myself in this has been an emotional experience, helping me get to know my father better even as I relive memories of my childhood.

Meanwhile, my work with various nonprofits has continued. Soon I hope to be posting pieces on the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, the Coastal School for Girls, the Concord Consortium, and others. But for now it's back to Thanksgiving dinner preparations.

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