Who says what?

Novelist, mother, minister, and yoga teacher muses on books, babies, motherhood, and what matters with reverent humor.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

All the way to Hong Kong

Look! A dear, old friend of mine from high school got my book delivered to Hong Kong. And there it is. The Hong Kong skyline. And that, most likely, is as close as I will ever get to seeing the view myself.

But, don't you think the book looks good in that light? Very sexy. Very sophisticated.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

On life after birth

So I'm attaching this monster ship of a maxipad to my underwear, and, based on size and weight alone the thing ought at the very least to require staples if not full on nails and a hammer, when it dawns on me that if I continue to use these super size pads, I will fill every landfill on the planet.

But, hey, it happens. After babies, you get what my midwife cheerily called "a return to fertility." You know, your monthly friend. Little red friend from Kansas.

Anyhow, this little friend of mine has changed since the kids came along. She's not what she used to be, way back, when she was younger. I can't really blame her, I've changed too.

Whoa! Help! I'll have to write more later....the current is taking me downstream on my kayak of cotton--

Friday, July 24, 2009

Has this ever happened to you?

I opened the refrigerator door and located a glass container of jam. Opened it. Inserted knife. Oh, the hollow, sad sound of scraping glass.

Someone in my household had returned said jar to the fridge.

I guess they were thinking it could still be licked clean.

Say, if you had the tongue of a dog.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Eat Your Peas!

And butter. And cheese. And bread.

I don't want to have to say it, but I've got a skinny daughter. I'm wondering where I went wrong. Has it already started, the culturally prescribed rite-of-passage body-obsessed diet-crazed habits of girlhood?

I mean, she's only fifteen months old. And I'm standing over here like an Italian grandmother practically pouring lard down her throat. She walks around on legs like a new born fawn, straight shoots from the hips down. My son, on the other hand, had rolls you could hide your cash in, say, if you didn't feel confident enough to put it in the market.

Well, if you want an exercise in futility, tell a burgeoning toddler to eat her dinner. She is too young to bribe with dessert, too clever to simply take what you offer--if she doesn't like it, she spits it out--and too good to be left in her high chair until she eats what she's been given. I could not even get her to eat bread and butter. Until I put jam on it. And while she wouldn't eat yogurt before, she will eat it now with honey in it.

You can feel free to give me advice, but I'm sure I don't need it. If I want to fatten her up, I'll have to put her on my diet: chocolate, baked goods, and chocolate, for variety. But what do they say? Girls are made of sugar and spice? They are certainly not made out of peas.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

More on Motherhood

Thinking more about my yesterday post and comment interchange--here's a reprint of the fantastic Nantucket Today magazine article in which I scandalously refer to motherhood as a spiritual calling. And YES, you SHOULD buy the book!! And one small caveat--I wax a bit on what I love about staying home with my children, but I certainly do not now, nor ever have, believed all women should stay home. I feel all women should only do what EACH women feels called to do and I admire and respect mothers who do whichever.

Read the review here.

Monday, July 20, 2009

You Know Not What You Do

I have just finished The Ten Year Nap by Meg Wolitzer, a novelist I adore, and you may have to stop me because I have more to say than anyone has the time to read, but being frank, as one can be while blogging, I have to confess, I didn't like the book primarily because I DO NOT AGREE with this premise that our time raising our children is anything like a "ten year nap." Also, it was not at all funny. (But then neither is this blog post.)

What disappoints me on a large scale (like bigger than a billboard), is the fact that women continue to act as though raising children is not of any significance, pining away for something worthwhile to do. (Um, gee, I don't think there EXISTS more worthwhile.) The characters in the book are all, mostly, aching for a sense of accomplishment and purpose. Paying no attention whatsoever to the reality of their lives.

What happened to me the other day: I come back from the grocery store. I have a car full of groceries including milk, cheese, frozen yogurt--you know, COLD things--and I discovered as I put the baby in the car seat at the store that she is soaking wet (through her pants). I am feeling a great senseur of urgency about my work, necessity, and, of course, purpose. I need to get the groceries in the house, unpack them, get the baby dry and clean, and entertain the toddler meanwhile or at the very least keep him from destroying himself or something in arm's reach and just at that moment, a door-to-door Sierra Club guy walks up the driveway and wants to talk to me, and I think to myself, HE thinks I can talk to him because I am simply "staying home."

I told him I don't have the money. My husband does. When he persisted, I told him I'm not sure we even like the Sierra Club. I said, AGAIN, I have a soaking wet baby and some thawing frozen food in my car. This may not make the national news, but it's as pressing and necessary as anything. And please, won't the women wake up from the thorny stem of feminism that has poked them into slumber like a reverse fairy tale, and realize that life is not happening SOMEWHERE ELSE. It is happening here, among the detritus of home life, as well as in the boardroom, and that somewhere, food needs refrigeration and that if you are the one to keep it cold, you have a purpose. A very fine purpose, in fact. Keeping frozen yogurt cold and edible may, actually, make this world go round. Never mind the act of service in cleaning a tiny, baby bum. (But p.s. if you pay attention you will be rewarded with a sense of purpose.)

Coming off of soap box now. Stepping down. Walking away from the silence of the computer.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Is this fun? I am having so much fun these days. (Minus moments of boredom, exhaustion, tedium, you know, the stuff of live.)

I have a new favorite person: Eliot Baker. He's a staff writer of Nantucket Today magazine. A father of one about to be a father of two who's read my book (and liked it!) In addition to being a funny, lyrical, interesting writer, he's a fan of mine. (Go, self-absorption, go!)

Here are a few things he said about THIS LITTLE MOMMY STAYED HOME.

Illuminating the dark corners of motherhood in “This Little Mommy Stayed Home” with light prose and breezy language, Wilde goes where no chick-lit has gone before.

The quick hits of lean, raunchy comedy tantalize readers like bites of spicy chocolate as protagonist Joy McGuire reclaims her femininity from drooping body parts amid a floundering marriage and illicit love interests.

Joy charms the reader with her wit as she punctuates smoldering inner monologues with punchy dialogue. Her cynicism is matched only by her disillusionment (which ultimately sublimates into a disarmingly authentic self-awareness).

But Wilde dives into that aching, sleep-deprived psychology head-first and smiling. Her gift for humor and comedic timing allows for an effortless foray into potentially-dangerous territory. She won’t shy away from sexuality or nasty thoughts, but Wilde knows how to temper the bad stuff with good humor. And she can be counted on to whisk her readers away from anything too dark before it becomes a bummer.

Now what could be better than that?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Announcing the "I'm a Mess" Motherhood Championship Contest

Well, I love new mothers. I just do. I see them, braving the strange world, small, blinky-eyed little new thing in their arms, and I want to--I want to give them all sorts of unsolicited advice. God, it's hard to be bossy.

Seeing as I can't do that (and shouldn't do that), I am announcing a new contest exclusively for first time mothers with babies under one year. (Terribly selective, I know, but I'm looking for the Joys among us. [That's the main character in my novel.])

Here are the rules.

1. Submit an essay by email only to samanthawilde@live.com.

2. You may write an essay about a new mother you know or about yourself if you are a new mother.

3. No more than 800 words.

4. Write why you are a mess (messy, tired, bewildered, on a steep-learning curve, drinking lots of coffee, eating lots of chocolate, etc.). Be humorous please and not totally depressing.

5. Then you must include some of the things/skills/gifts you have gained in your new mothering experience. In other words, why you are in fact a CHAMPION mother. And YES, go on and praise yourself. I WANT you to. It will feel GOOD to see how much you have gained.

6. DEADLINE: September 1

7. You must include your name and email address. If your essay is chosen you will be notified by email and will need to send along a mailing address.

I will pick TWO winning entries.

The winners will each receive a signed copy of THIS LITTLE MOMMY STAYED HOME and have their essay published on this blog.

So go on, reach out and touch me with your essay. New mamas, you are already champions, but if you have time to write an essay, you really will deserve an award.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Aren't You Ashamed of Yourself?

Yes, I am. I'm terribly ashamed of myself. If I had my own reality show I'd be in the headlines right now: Mother Acts Childish. But, thank God, I am not on TV. I do not have to be scrutinized by the masses for the normal, garden-variety imperfections that I sport like freckles.

We went to dinner. That's how it all began. Except it was WAY past bedtime for those among us who deem it fine to fart in public (my children, but thank you for thinking that I am a) that young and b) that liberated and unselfconscious). Cranky doesn't do justice to their state of being. Spilled: not just one but TWO miso soups. Overheard: shushing from the childless people beside me. Reaction: the embarrassing mother behavior that makes us all want to turn away. In other words, cross words, cross face, a lot of huffing, whispered threats, and one hearty, I-am-so-put-upon sigh.

The big kid spilled the soy onto the table. The little one put her hand in the burning hot soup and tipped it over. The big one moved the table and spilled the replacement soup. The little one screamed "POTTY" at the top of her lungs (I mean, for AWHILE, like we're attracting attention awhile). The big one covered himself in sticky sushi rice. The little one threw crackers on the floor and laughed. Do I need to go on?

I don't even want to tell you the price of that Japanese dinner. When we got back, my husband and I looked at one another surprised that we had lived through it.

And to think I'd been planning on getting dressed up for this meal! Check please.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Thank God for the Kid

As you all know, I'm on tour for THIS LITTLE MOMMY STAYED HOME.
(Oooh, sounds so good, doesn't it?) Actually, I'm with my husband for a conference and up for a book reading at the local Borders. I visited the store today with wet (from rain and lake play) children where I was greeted with a great picture of the book and announcement of the event on the door.

But then, I couldn't find the book.

Now, I'm a humble person. (Ah-hum.) So I wasn't going to go searching or ASK. God forbid I ask for my own book. Instead, I moved on to the kids section where I spent a lot of time delineating the differences between book stores (NO, you can't take it home) and libraries (where you can take it home but you can't step on it).

As we moved out, two wet umbrellas, two tired children, one slightly bewildered looking woman furtively searching for her debut novel, my son said: "Look, Mama, it's the same baby." He tugged on my hand to pull me back and pointed at an enormous display that contained--you guessed it,

MY BOOK. And even better: ONLY my book.

Wow. It was like Danielle Steele or something, they had so many copies. I was tempted to take a picture but couldn't endure such a display of self-gratifying humiliation. (Or something like that. Don't expect fancy words. These feelings are new for me. I don't know what to call them.)

I sauntered out. Still with two wet children and two wet umbrellas and myself. But, hey, I sauntered.

So if you're in the heartbreakingly beautiful state of Vermont, come on Thursday at 7 p.m. to Borders in Burlington and after my reading (which I promise will make you wish you'd worn Depends--if your post partum body is anything like mine [from laughing, not from free drinks]) and I will sign a copy just for you!

Friday, July 3, 2009

You Can't Be Serious?

Being funny is really hard work.

It's much easier to be serious. Seriously. Melodrama just flows from me. Sap. Sentiment. Self-obsessed misery.

But I have to work really, really hard to write something funny for all you virtual people out there. And STILL I can't get taken seriously.

Comedy is for the dogs.

Woof. Woof.

P.S. Novel is out. THIS LITTLE MOMMY STAYED HOME is a totally serious, deep, probing account of the great mystery of motherhood in all its complex, inscrutable ways. Adrienne Rich move over. I will depress the heck out of you. I mean, when you're sitting around using your precious free-time to read a novel, isn't depression what you're after?

P.P.S. Here are some fun blogs I've visited lately: www.maggiemarr.com. www.robertaisleib.com/blog http://www.joannerendell.com/. http://grannypantychronicles.blogspot.com/
There are others! I'll try to get them up soon.