A delightful friend and colleague of mine, Deb Siegel, recently shared with me a sort of photo essay of the various places she sat and read The Temple of Air this past summer while she was visiting her family camp in the Belgrade Lakes district of Maine (think On Golden Pond.) I don’t think she will mind if I share these photos with you, and also her very lovely note:
Besides just being a really nice thing for someone to do for me, this photo collection is especially meaningful for a few reasons. My brother Wesley McNair is the poet laureate of Maine. The title story, “The Temple of Air,” was first ever read from at Stonecoast Writers Conference (University of Southern Maine) where I was so lucky to have been part of the faculty for a number of years. (I’d love to come back; will you have me, Stonecoast?) The fine writer, editor, and founder/director of Fairfield University’s low-residency MFA Creative Writing Program Michael White heard me read from this story and suggested I submit it to an anthology he and Alan Davis edited, American Fiction: The Best Unpublished Short Stories by Emerging Writers. I did, and they published it. A number of stories that appear in The Temple of Air had their first outings at Stonecoast during faculty readings.
So it is a full-circle sort of thing that The Temple of Air got to spend summer days in Maine. Thanks, Deb, for sharing your trip with my book. And as always, to you and to everyone else–thanks for reading! -PMc