CARLSBAD — Leucadia provides the backdrop for Teresa Link’s first book, “Denting the Bosch: A Novel of Marriage, Friendship and Expensive Household Appliances” published by St. Martin’s Press. The storyline deals with the ups and downs three couples experience as they transition from the California dream to lives as empty nesters, coping with divorce and economic hardship.
Link will sign books and discuss her work at 7 p.m. Nov. 13 at the Carlsbad City Library’s Ruby G. Schulman Auditorium, 1775 Dove Lane. In addition, Write Out Loud will offer a reading by founders Walter Ritter and Veronica Murphy as well as actors Linda Libby and Eddie Yaroch. “Teresa has been a friend of ours, and has been a reader for us, too,” Murphy said. “The book is funny, insightful and wonderfully descriptive. I want all my friends to read it because they are going to understand the characters, empathize with them and get angry at them — it’s an emotional story because it’s about life.”
Link lived in Solana Beach and Leucadia from 2004 until last June when she got homesick and returned to the East Coast. She assures old San Diego neighbors and friends that they have nothing to worry about.
“The book is completely fiction — completely made up,” she said. “While it was the first novel to be published, it was the third to be written. The first things we write about are autobiographical so we can teach ourselves. By the time I wrote this book, I was capable enough as a writer to trust my imagination and had already exorcised those autobiographical impulses.”
Link said she learned how to write from her father, an English teacher, who would give her high school books to read as a young child.
“He was a vocabulary maven,” she remembers.
Her mother was a journalist who grew up in San Diego and had a column in Women and Guns magazine.
“She has an encyclopedic knowledge of fire arms and the arsenal to prove it,” Link explained. “She was always huddled in the study doing product evaluations of guns, sights, targets and outdoor equipment and would happily run into the woods to try them out.”
Link first chose a career as an actor, graduating with a B.A. and B.F.A., then performing the classics in regional theatre as well as touring with Phantom of the Opera in Scotland. She also did soap opera work to pay the bills.
After a divorce, Link said she turned to writing, realizing it was when she was happiest and most productive.
“I’ve always been a writer — as a child I would write about fluffy clouds,” she recalled. “I think most of us don’t trust things that come easy. I became an actress first because it was difficult for me.”
Initially, Link wrote television scripts and soap operas and, eventually, travel articles. In addition to being an author these days, she blogs for the Huffington Post and writes for the Modern Love column in the Sunday edition of The New York Times.
Link says she begins writing about 8 or 9 a.m., with tea and a pad, and can continue all day. At bedtime, she gives herself questions, which she says are often answered when she wakes up.
“It’s in sleeping that my writing gets stoked,” she explained.
Her advice to new writers is to write all the time, anything that comes to mind, in journals, letters and blogs. It’s important, she says, to make writing a daily habit. The second tip is to read.
“It’s astonishing to me how many students don’t read books,” she said. “Read pamphlets and books from different centuries. Read the Bible. You begin to imitate certain voices. That helps you find the nuggets that become your own voice.”
Link will be in San Diego the month of November promoting her book and offering a one-day workshop on Writing Dialogue on Nov. 17. For more information, visit sandiegowriters.org.