Can I pull it off? That's what I keep wondering.

First I spent a day gulping down coffee and combing through the entire novel. I fixed all the nitpicky grammatical corrections that Julie had scribbled in purple pen. This is called a line edit. Fortunately, I didn't have to slog through too much.

Like my own personal cheerleader, Julie actually took the time to write a few "goods" and "greats" in the margins:

I was blown away. Most editors wouldn't bother. But Julie isn't like most editors.

Next, I started writing new chapters. Not because I was specifically asked to do it...but because it feels more comfortable to me (rather than trying to insert new material into the existing chapters. I can always do that later...break up the new chapters into little pieces, if Julie requests it).

I'm trying to write with Julie's questions in mind. Hopefully I can pull together the missing pieces of my plot.

We still don't have a title.

Over vacation, I met a kid in New York who's chasing after my agent. Small world. Maybe he thought that I could help him wedge his foot in the door...but that's up to Kate, not me. He's writing a memoir about teaching English as a second language in Vietnam. We met on a drizzly afternoon for Aztec hot chocolate at MarieBelle in SoHo--the kind of drink that resembles a liquid candy bar. As we spooned the last dregs from our cups, wrinkly old Harvey Keitel stepped into the line. A bunch of giggly girls aimed their camera phones at him (pretending to snap pictures of their gawking friends). He left without looking at them.