Can you solve this puzzle?

Sudoku in progress
Sudoku in progress

About a year ago, I got hooked on the KenKen puzzles in the Sunday New York Times.  When that addiction got out of control (I began printing extra KenKen puzzles to have enough to solve during the week), I solved the problem — by adding Sudoku.  I started with a puzzle or two.  Then I bought an entire book of the things.  It did cut down on my Ken Ken use.  But I got even more addicted to Sudoku.  The saddest part is that I’m terrible at numbers.  More than once I’ve stayed up most of the night trying to solve a single KenKen puzzle (and note the use of “trying to”).  For what it’s worth, I have gotten to the point where I can solve “Very Hard” Sudoku.  But not quickly.  And I keep thinking that when I fit in the last number, something more will be solved.  So far, no luck.


Completed "Very Hard" Sudoku puzzle.
Completed “Very Hard” Sudoku puzzle.




The Next Big Thing

Matthew Lippman has tagged me to join The Next Best Thing, started by poet Elizabeth Scanlon.  It’s an ongoing network of self-interviews in which each writer with a book coming out tags another set of writers, so that we might all know what everyone’s up to lately.  This is mine . . .

What is the working title of the book?

 The title of my chapbook is Folding Water.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

 I was on the subway heading home late at night and decided to record my family’s subway trip from Russia to Brooklyn.  (Okay, maybe there isn’t a train between the two.  Not anymore . . . )

What genre does your book fall under?


What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

Goldy Hawn, Woody Allen.

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?

 The only known book with instructions on how to fold water.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

I started some of the poems about three years ago.

 Who or what inspired you to write this book?

 I’m one of the only ones still alive who knows the stories my family carried with them from a shtetl near Kiev to America.   I wanted to honor those stories.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

 It will shower you with marzipan rain.

 Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

 Published by Finishing Line Press.  To pre-order, just click here.

My tagged writers for next Wednesday are:

Darla K. Crist

Ellaraine Lockie

Corey Mesler

Samantha Priestly

I can tag only one more — please let me know if you have a book or chapbook of any kind coming out this year or so, and I’ll tag you.  First come, first served!

The Month of Ice

Bryant Park, photographcourtesy of Rick Moore
Bryant Park, photograph
courtesy of Rick Moore

Here in NYC, February is the month of ice — the 28 days I spend dreading I’ll freeze permanently.  It would be realist to worry about frostbite, but no, I have nightmares that I’ll ice over into The Incredible Frozen Woman, perpetually on display at some Lapland ice bar. 

So what do I do about it?  I ice skate.  Go figure.

Proof that I really do skate.  Photograph courtesy of J.S. Graustein.
Proof that I really do skate. Photograph courtesy of
J.S. Graustein.