“Scofield’s sense of history and of place is unfaltering, unflagging....“
–Boston Sunday Globe
“Each story in SWIM is a gift by a master at the height of her talents.“
James Anderson, The Never-Open Desert Diner” and Lullaby Road
In three long stories, Scofield follows the journey of a young uprooted woman searching for selfhood, purpose, and belonging.
In “Oh Baby Oh” the woman—let’s call her “Baby”—hitchhikes from New York to San Francisco, to join a young man she met three years earlier. She learns that her underlying contempt for an unsophisticated man is a sure way to be seen as contemptuous herself. Only the kindness of a young couple saves her despair.
In “An Easy Pass” Baby spends a day at a tienta—the testing of brave bulls—on a bullfighter’s ranch. There, she thinks she knows her place, and feels safe. After all, she amuses her host, and asks nothing of him. But when she capes a calf in the ring, her powerful host, with a cruel sense of play, lets her know where she stands in the world where she does not belong.
Finally, on the island of Mykonos, long before it became an Adriatic hot spot, Baby offers her friendship and guidance to two young soldiers on holiday, asking for nothing but their company. The soldiers, Oklahoma hardshell Baptists, confounded by Baby’s insouciance, scheme to save her from a rootless life. In a fit of angry independence, she heads straight out to sea.
Upcoming Fall 2017
The Last Draft: A Novelist’s Guide to Revision
Also by Sandra Scofield
Plain Seeing (Harper)
A Chance to See Egypt (HarperCollins)
Opal on Dry Ground (Villard, Random House)
More Than Allies (Plume)
Walking Dunes (Plume)
Beyond Deserving (Plume)
Gringa (Permanent Press)
Mysteries of Love and Grief: Reflections
on a Plainswoman’s Life (Texas Tech University Press)
Occasions of Sin (WW Norton)
The Scene Book: A Primer for the Fiction Writer