Saturday, January 1, 2011

Gringa in New York: post-hippy time

I am never happier than when I am in the middle of writing a book (now: Cleans up Nicely ) and I am never more disssatisfied (like watching a great dream dissolving). A whole new cast of characters from the mid-70's, but impossible to include them all, plus the material is at times in danger of being too rich, like a decadent chocolate cake with whipped cream. But the best part of this book for me is getting into the visual art of the time, like the paintings of vaginas glued with thrift-shop fur. Our artist heroine did not do this one! Strangely, the first full-length bio of Alice Neel (aka Malice Neel) has just come out. Neel is a major minor character in Cleans Up.

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About my latest book, a novel, "Gringa in a Strange Land." Set in Mexico in the early '70's, a(n American) female on-the-road adventure, a coming of age tale, but also a kind of love letter to southern Mexico, especially the Yucatan, during the tempestuous counterculture and - many of us thought - the edge of a new era throwing off repression, war and dictatorship (man, were we wrong.)