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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Guest Author Margaret Finnegan and "The Goddess Lounge"


In my novel The Goddess Lounge, an Altadena mom attends a "goddess consultation" at a notorious LA coffee house/knitting salon/menstrual palace called The Goddess Lounge, and from there on out madcap adventures ensue. On my blog, FinneganBeginAgain, readers ask me to find goddesses to help them with issues as diverse as career advancement to leaky plumbing.

You might wonder: Margaret, what's up with all the goddesses?

I'm glad you asked! I believe we live in a world that lacks historical memory.  We throw out the past like it's old Kleenex. The problem is that if you only have your own personal past to provide context for your experiences, then whenever some new tragedy strikes you can't help but gnash your teeth and wonder how you of all people became so particularly and cruelly ill fated. Your partner leaves you and you gnash.  Your career falls apart and you gnash. Your child/parent/best friend/self becomes painfully ill and you gnash, gnash, gnash.

You know what helps with the gnashing? Stories, ancient stories that remind us that loss, pain and hardship are timeless and universal. The only problem is that, in the old stories, hardship turns men into heroes and it turns women into crazy ladies or dead crazy ladies. Which is why women need better stories. Enter goddesses.

Being a goddess was no cake walk. Husbands cheated on you. Children died and betrayed you. You encountered humiliation, sadness, sorrow.  But you didn't go all cat lady and die. You muddled through. And you didn't get a boob job to please a man or feel guilty for wanting something just for yourself. You knew your invaluable worth, and you expected others to know it too. You were better than a hero. You were a goddess.

Want to be a goddess? Here's what you do: Look around, and in the places of your life where you find disrespect and ingratitude, say: "I am a goddess. I will not put up with this shit." And in the places of your life where you find hurt and pain, say: "You poor little thing, come hide under my wings. I am a goddess, and you are safe."

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Meet Margaret at a book signing and reception for The Goddess Lounge:

Saturday, July 21
Three o'clock to four-thirty in the afternoon
SPACE Arts Center
1508 Mission Street
South Pasadena, CA 91030

A portion of all proceeds will go to SPACE art scholarships.

Watch a trailer for TheGoddess Lounge (narrated by Pasadena Daily Photo's own Petrea Burchard).


18 comments:

Shell Sherree said...

And again, you inspire me, Margaret. Thank you.

Margaret said...

So excited to be visiting today. Thanks, Petrea.

Latino Heritage said...

Love your line about personal past and context for experiences. Look forward to reading the book.

Tony Van Helsing said...

Brilliantly put. We are very self centred at times and like you say, all our troubles have been experienced by others before us.

Petrea Burchard said...

I'm excited to have you here today, Margaret. I love this entry. Stories have always been my salvation and I love your take on the ancient ones.

altadenahiker said...

I'll be there, you goddess you.

Jean Spitzer said...

Well said.

Pasadena Adjacent said...

I'll be there too - but can we put a moratorium on "cat lady" The ladies collect dogs too. Ok, maybe dogs the size of cats, but none the less.

Margaret said...

PA: Consider the moratorium set, although there is a difference between cat lady and crazy cat lady. Collecting dogs is just good sense.

Petrea Burchard said...

There's a dog that lives around the corner from me that I want to collect. Boz says no. And I have competition for him. All the dog ladies in the neighborhood want to steal him from his yard.

Margaret. Question: Is it kosher for me to bring my already-purchased paperback of "The Goddess Lounge" for you to sign on Saturday, or is that just plain rude?

Deb @ Paper Turtle said...

What a great summary of what you do and why you do it, Margaret. Carrie and I would LOVE to be at your book signing...dumb ol' miles between us.

I ordered your book from Amazon and I do need to figure out how to get you to sign it. One of these days we'll pass through Pasadena again and you can sign it while we eat pie together. ~sigh~ Someday...

Margaret said...

Petrea: Of course you can bring your previously purchased copy! Absolutely.

Deb: I will send you a book plate! Soon! I still have to get some. But I will!

Katie said...

I wish I could attend on Saturday Margaret! I bought the paperback version and am absolutely loving it. I don't want to read it too fast as I want to savor your wonderful writing and great story. I know I'll be buying many more copies for gifts and will be spreading the word about a hot new writer. Have fun on Saturday and let me know if you'll ever be doing a reading in the SF area!

Ms M said...

Great Guest post, Margaret! Always good to remember our goddess natures. Wish I could attend your book signing, but the commute is a little long :-) I hope it is smashingly wonderful!

Susan Campisi said...

Great post, Margaret. This goddess stuff really works. I went through a tough emotional ride recently, and I found strength in the goddess stories. Thank you. I'll definitely be at the book signing.

Petrea Burchard said...

Thank you so much for posting here today, Margaret.

I had dinner tonight with a mutual friend of ours. I'll let her fill you in on the details. But she told me she was reading "The Goddess Lounge" in a restaurant this morning and three different people came up to her and asked about it. Cool, huh?

Margaret said...

Thanks to everyone for your comments and good wishes. I should mentioned that I am always humbled by the generosity of the blogosphere, which is one of the reasons I dedicated my book, in part, to my blog readers. Thanks, all.

Petrea: I'm blushing at your anecdote. Can't wait to learn more.

Shanna said...

Yes to history!!! You said it well, of course and I am expecting to be there today to hear you in person.