7-Year Itch Special!

It’s been 7 years since 500 Acres and No Place to Hide, More Confessions of a Counterfeit Farm Girl came out. It debuted on Labor Day weekend, 2011. Five months earlier, on April 13th, Stu died. I will be forever grateful to my editor  for getting a really, really advance copy of the book for him to see before he passed.

As you can imagine, the book tour for 500 Acres was very difficult for me. I was grief stricken, exhausted, too thin, and wracked with panic attacks. For example, I could drive, but only if I didn’t try to breathe at the same time. Consequently, I feel as if I never gave the book the push it deserved. Of the two I’ve written, it’s the better book. It’s funny and sad, just like real life. Maybe it’s too late now to encourage people to read it but, hopeless optimist that I am, I’m trying anyway.

In honor of the 7th anniversary of the publication of 500 Acres, I’m celebrating with my first ever 7-Year Itch Special.  If you missed 500 Acres (and therefore have yet to discover “Cluckster’s Last Stand” and what “Looking for Dick in All the Wrong Places” is really about), here’s your chance to get a signed copy for yourself or a friend who could use a little more laughter in her (or his!) life.

See the “Buy Now” button below? Once you click it, you’ll be taken to Susan McCorkindale, LLC’s spot on PayPal. Then:

  1. The lovely people at PayPal will ask for your credit card information, email, and shipping address (the $25 fee covers the book and all costs associated with getting it in the mail lickety split).
  2. I’ll receive your order summary and drop you an email asking to whom you’d like the book inscribed and where you’d like it shipped.

A little complicated but nothing an always and forever fake farm girl can’t handle. Thanks so much for celebrating with me and remember: books signed by the Author make great gifts!

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Hoping there’s a manuscript in this mess


On one hand, I’m proud that this coming Labor Day will mark four years since 500 Acres And No Place To Hide came out. On the other hand, I’m really disappointed that I’ve yet to write another book. I used to be rather prolific, really organized, and hyper-focused. These days I’m the poster woman/wife/mom for manic. One minute I’m at my desk writing, the next I decide to get more coffee, become distracted by the dishwasher, start to unload it but stop because I have a thought I need to write down before I forget, race to my office, pass my son’s room, remember his rugby shorts are in the dryer, dash down to the basement to retrieve them, throw in another load, fold everything, race back upstairs to put it all away only to discover a dirty bowl and spoon on my son’s dresser that sends me back to the kitchen where the half unloaded dishwasher awaits and I smack myself in the head for forgetting about it.

It’s tough to get a book written in this condition.

I have, however, filled dozens of notebooks like those pictured above with essays, snippets of conversations, and random thoughts, and have book ideas, lists of titles, chapter notes, and even entire chapters written and saved in more than two dozen files on my computer. I was looking at a lot of it this morning when it crossed my mind that there might be enough material for a new book. Of course I suddenly needed more coffee, went to the kitchen, decided I’d be much more inspired drinking out of my favorite orange and white coffee mug, couldn’t find it, realized it was in the dishwasher, began unloading the dishwasher and, well, you know the rest.

I’ll look at it all again tomorrow. I plan to make my coffee in my office so I don’t have to go to the kitchen. This should work until I need to use the bathroom, decide the towels need to be washed and if I’m doing them I might as well gather all the laundry, run down to the basement, and, you know, never come back.

S. xo

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Perfect for your beach bag (and your friend’s)

beach chair yellow

My beach bag is a mess. In it I’ve got a sticky tube of sunblock, melted lip balm, bug spray from 2009, broken hair clips, over-stretched hair bands, a comb missing several teeth, a brush that could be worn as a wig, crumpled (but not used) tissues, band-aids that have long since lost their ability to aid anybody, and several paperback books filled with sand.  Two of those books, believe it or not, are the ones I’ve written. I like to walk up to women who are sitting on the beach reading and say, “Forgive me for interrupting, but I just finished this and it’s a terrific summertime read. Would you like it?” Nine times out of ten they say yes, and I give them a copy of 500 Acres and No Place to Hide.

According to several top book reviewers, 500 Acres IS a great summertime read. If you’ve read it, thanks. If you have a friend who hasn’t, and is headed to the beach or lake for one last Summer escape, why not get them a copy? They’ll have to stick sand in it themselves, but they’ll thank you!

From Story Circle Book Reviews:

Summertime. A perfect time for a memoir that is light-hearted and fun. McCorkindale’s humorist look at life in the slow lane is a great fit.

This is a sequel, but certainly nothing in the book requires you to have read the first one. The author’s approach is self-depreciating as well as funny, and the serious elements (e.g. her husband’s battle with pancreatic cancer) are dealt with in such a way that you can laugh and cry at the same time, and feel comfortable.

My own father used to say “I’m just a country boy trying to get along in the big city.” Well—McCorkindale is the complete opposite; a city girl trying to get by on 500 acres of beef cattle, outnumbered in her household by her two sons and husband.

“How many kids does it take to close the one and only gate that keeps the cattle in the pasture?” the author muses. Her answer? “Two. One to say, ‘what gate?’ and the second one to say, ‘I didn’t open it.'” With this sally, the intrepid McCorkindale takes on the farm. A woman a tad too obsessed with designer footwear and crow’s feet around her eyes, she is still able to bring a biting wit to her descriptions of farm animals, bad weather, and wearing Prada to do chores in the barn.

She mourns the loss of Taxi Takeout and made-to-order lattes, and in each essay in this book she takes a original look at her life in the country, complete with crowing hens, stinkbugs and Kudzu. She deals with her frustration with her writing: the local newspaper that has stopped printing her articles and owns up to the fact that her local readers feel she has gone to “the dark side.” Readers have complained that she is “…a bit bawdy, rather ribald, even risque…pining for bigger breasts and a smaller butt, my unabashed enthusiasm for high heels, tattoos and margaritas…even my reminiscences about high school boyfriends…are verboten. Taboo. Who knew?”

McCorkindale’s obsessions with personal looks, glamor, fashion and beauty may be a bit off-putting, but she writes ’em as she sees ’em. You may wonder about her style, her vision of child-rearing and her methods of dealing with a terminally ill husband, but you can’t deny that she has a strength in her humor, a veracity to her approach, and a refreshing ability to make a life for herself that she never planned. You come away from the reading of 500 Acres with a smile and an appreciation for someone who constantly makes lemonade when life gives her lemons.

I recommend this book for any woman, at any age, who wants a fun summer read that will also provide some introspection and self-evaluation!

by Laura Strathman Hulka
for Story Circle Book Reviews

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