Thursday, July 30, 2009

Universal Time

I'm a firm believer in the law of attraction—I've seen it work too many times not to be—but even I can still be taken by surprise by how well it works sometimes.

I've been happily without paying work since the first week in July. Happily, because when I don't have a deadline on a paying project, I spend all my working time working on Madison. Which means that this month, I worked nearly four solid weeks on my own novel, editing and writing, and refining. I purposely didn't go hunting for more paying work since we don't currently need the money and I really wanted to work on Madison. To be specific, I wanted to finish Madison.

Today, I finished! The writing is done! I have four new chapters of text (approximately 80 pages) to edit, then I start seriously sending out query letters!

Like the universe had been hold its breath for this moment, this morning, almost simultaneous with the thought that I was going to finish today, I got an email and a paying project is now on my plate. The timing couldn't have been more perfect. Thank you, universe!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A Writer's Life

I typically check two author blogs regularly: Laurell K. Hamilton's and Katie MacAlister's. Oddly, they both blogged about similar things today—what it means to be a full-time author.

I've gotta say, I've got it pretty easy right now. I'm working on only one book, I'm not promoting anything yet, I'm not on Facebook or MySpace, I haven't touched my website in a shamefully long time, I'm not editing another book, or working on the outline of a third. I'm not even on a deadline.

Seeing those posts was a good reminder to enjoy right now, my free time, my shorter workdays. There will come a time when I'm up to my eyeballs in writing work, when I'll need an assistant or two just to help me keep it straight. I really look forward to that time, but right now, I'll enjoy getting to go eat a piece of chocolate and chill in front of the TV.

Final Fight Scene done! Which means I have about 3,000-5,000 words worth of new text to add to the end of Madison book 1, and then it's done! Okay, it's done being written, and then there's another round of edits on the new text, but the hard part, the writing, is so close to being done!

After a slow start, everything flowed like magic today, well through my lunch hour. I'm not thoroughly burnt either, but I'm going to wait for a fresh mind for the final scene/wrap up. I'm so close!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Dialog Difficulties

I envy writers who have dialog flow from their fingertips onto the screen. I've been struggling today and yesterday with two scenes, both of which are dialog heavy. I've written, tightened, added, tightened again, changed the pace, change the flow, changed the speakers, changed the voice. Every time, it's an improvement, but it sure would be nice to have it come out perfectly the first time.

I guess I could say the same about all writing, but dialog has always been a struggle for me. There's so much to wrap up in the words. I try to capture the voice of the person, their mood, their speech style. Description can take a little more time, creep up on the picture or throw it in your face, changed by the tone of the scene, but dialog always needs to reflect the character.

I never paid much attention to my dialog in writing until I wrote a screenplay. The only real thing in a screenplay is the dialog. And mine was atrocious, bland, long-winded, and interchangeable between characters.

I've given it a lot of work in the intervening years and studied some of the masters (like Evanovich and MacAlister). I've gotten better. I still think I've got a ways to go before it flows easily for me.

Monday, July 27, 2009

More Than Human

I finished Jacqueline Carey's Santa Olivia in record time this weekend, and I've confirmed that Carey is no longer a one-world author for me. I loved Santa Olivia.

First off, it had Carey's great writing, great plot, and great characters. But beyond that, it had Carey's great imagination. The world she built was unique—a post-plague world unlike any I've seen before. She captured the desperation, the hope, the will to live, and the changes that would happen in the event of a plague.

But my very favorite thing was how well she created Loup, the main character, a daughter of a genetically enhanced man and a normal woman. Loup gets the characteristics of her father, a man whose genes were bred with animals, the equivalent of a science-made werewolf (who doesn't change with a full moon, but is a blend of animal and human).

Most authors have treated this animal-human mix as a human with superior strength (and usually a superior/larger sex drive). They've not really thought through the differences between human and animals beyond those of a physical level, and what it would be like for a human to have animal reactions to life. Carey, however, gave Loup a lot of the emotional properties of an animal, along with the enhanced physical capabilities, and it made her a fascinating character to read. I highly recommend this novel.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Rage Against the Cheap Plot Trick

I recently finished watching the fifth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. **Warning, several spoiler alerts ahead.** She died at the end. Just as Monarch of the Glen season three kills off a main character at the end, just as Torchwood kills off several main characters at the end of season two, just as Serenity kills off one of my favorite characters in a completely unnecessary twist. It's very depressing, to say the least.

It's my second to least favorite plot device. If a story has reached a point where characters being in immense danger is no longer extreme enough, and the only next step is their death, does that mean that the story is more real, or just that the author(s) made a wrong turn? I don't think I have it in me to kill one of my main characters in a novel. Does that make me a weak writer?

Worse yet, I know from my helpful Netflix that Buffy will come back. That's my all-time least favorite plot device—the trickery that the character is well and truly dead, buried, headstone and casket and the whole works, then miraculously returns from the grave. It's one thing to make the readers think the person died (in fact, it's one of the key steps of Campbell's Journey of a Hero), but to carry through with the death, then resurrect the character is cheap. It takes everything you've believed in before—the suspension of disbelief to fall into the author's world—and cheapens it down to a parlor trick. A "oh, you had a bad dream, and none of it really happened, Dorothy" moment.

Yeah, I never cared for the Wizard of Oz either, not even as a kid.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Ongoing Inspiration

A lot of the news out there for authors isn't positive. It's one of my main pet peeves with the publishing industry. Everybody seems determined to get their discouraging word in about how hard it is to be a writer, how hard it is to get published. Fellow writers love the topic of writer's block. Writing magazines love to emphasize the importance of winning contests, because how else could you possibly manage to get noticed and published in today's market. Lately, agent blogs and basic writer news sources have ramped up the negativity, explaining in detail how publishing houses are cutting back, being tighter, paying less, buying less—expected, of course, in light of the economy.

However, it's exactly what everyone's been saying for the last ten years. There's never been a point in my writing career where agents and editors have been saying, "Now's a great and easy time to get published." And it annoys me. I don't like being told that my dreams are nigh impossible, and I don't like people telling me it's harder than it is. People are still getting published. People will always be published. Yes, the formatting might change. Yes, the tastes of the audiences might change. Yes, there'll never be a ticket window somewhere that guarantees when your number is called, you get published. It's a job like any other in that respect.

Which is why I love running Number One Novels. I've got a lineup through the end of September of debut authors. Ever single one of them has a second book on contract, if not more. It gives me constant inspiration, and I think that's something this industry is really lacking.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Crowbars Aren't a Writer's Friend

The rewrites and edits on Madison have been going smoothly, wonderfully, even quickly. Until today. Today I got to a scene that had been shifted significantly, and it no longer worked. I edited one way. Stopped, switched directions. Stopped again and crowbarred it into place. Ick. Not pretty. The more I fussed, the more I realized that the scene plain didn't work. Not as it was. It was flawed in a major way, and it took moving it and reworking it a half dozen times to see it.

I stopped trying to write. I opened a fresh Word doc and stared freewriting. Freewriting for me is where I type everything that comes to mind, and lucky for me, my fingers can almost keep up with my thoughts.

It didn't take too long to realize the problem: the scene wasn't important enough any longer as it stood. I couldn't cut it completely, because it triggers a few key moments in this book and the next. Once I realized that, I pared the scene down to those events, then played the "what if" game. A few paragraphs of freewrite later, and I've got a different, better direction.

The new ideas are percolating. I haven't written anything yet. I need a moment to let it sink in, and luckily, I've the luxury of a little extra time. Tomorrow I'll know what, if anything, I can keep. Right now. I think at best I'll keep the general characteristics of the people in the scene, and that's about it. Not much to say for fifteen pages of text.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Book Purge

I horde books. There's something very pleasing about a full bookcase...or five. Seeing all the books lined up, alphabetized by author and shelved by genre, gives me peace or comfort or something I'm not in the mood to analyze. I started collecting books in my early teens, using some birthday money to buy my first bookcase. I don't collect anything else, not DVDs or shoes or music or men. I horde only books.

I have standards, though. I won't just toss anything on my shelves. I have to have read the book or be planning to read it (different shelves). If read, I have to have really liked the book. If I can't decide if I really liked the book, it goes. If I don't think I'll read the author's next novel, the book goes.

I was recently inspired to take a closer look at my shelves, to see if what I had was really what I wanted on them. I was surprised to find that there were many books that I'd moved with me many times but no longer loved. Authors who had been favorites of mine when I was younger, but whom I no longer read. Coffee table books that I'd gotten for free—and since I don't own a coffee table and am not a fan of large picture books stacked on flat surfaces, they've been shelved among the other nonfiction. Books that I read and loved a decade ago, that I've not thought about in nearly as long.

I pulled all these from my shelves. The result: about seven or eight paper grocery bags worth of unwanted books (I don't have that many spare bags, so mostly they're stacked on the floor in the giveaway section of my library/dining room). All these books will go to the used book store and then on to good homes where they'll be loved and treasured again. It makes me happy. Plus, looking at all those holes in my shelves that can be filled with new books always brings a smile to my face.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sleepy Revelation

Do you ever have those nights when you're almost asleep, drifting along on thoughts that you're no longer consciously controlling and that are just this side of a dream, where frolicking in poppy fields with a silver horse you know is really the queen of England doesn't seem odd in the least bit, and then, completely unbidden, a thought rockets through it all so strong in its urgency that you're suddenly wide awake? I had that happen to me last week. With dire urgency, I realized, It's the middle of July and I've had only one peach this summer!

Now this doesn't seem like the sort of thing to wake one's self up over, but I love peaches. Not just any peach, either. They have to be fresh (read local). Peaches are rather tricky fruit. Unlike many that can be picked unripe and shipped from all corners of the globe with equal success, a peach picked too soon and sold partially unripe is quite a letdown. You've purchased and carried home and looked forward to this fruit, only to bite into it and get paltry flavor, pithy innards, or worst, an apple-like consistency. Hence, the short summer window to get delicious peaches picked locally, fresh and juicy, with a little give in the skin at the time of purchase and a need to be eaten within a few days lest they go bad. That's a good peach.

I've had summer crushes on kiwi and strawberries before, even the occasional month fling with plums, but my longtime love will always be peaches. (Peach margaritas are pretty tasty, too.)

Since that startling revelation, I've had at least three, and I plan to make the most of this great fruit season! (I've also done a lot of work on Madison recently, but who cares about that in light of the peach revelation?)

(Eek! I just accidentally posted this on NON. Wouldn't the fans there be confused to be reading about my love of peaches rather than a debut author!)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Hunger vs. Muse

I had a wonderful Madison-editing day today. I headed off to Borders with a very long chapter in hand, thinking I'd work for an hour or so and then return home. The chapter in question was previously the main climax of the story, but I realized (with help from a friend) that the story wasn't really complete there, so this chapter had to be changed to a middle-of-the-tale climax.

The editing went smoothly, the new story building in between what was already there, and then I wrote two and a half pages of new text to transition to the next chapter.

It was one of those writing sessions where I'd forget the people around me for chunks of time, where the story was vivid in my head, the sensations of the characters real. It flowed.

I worked straight through lunch and beyond, hunger unnoticed until I stood up to leave after finishing the entire chapter. When my hands trembled as I picked up my notebook, I finally checked the time and realized I'd been sitting there for nearly four hours! It's days like this that reaffirm why I love being a writer.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Forced Appreciation

For all that I can say that I appreciate having all the little things that make my life easier—electricity, running water, an ice maker—there's nothing like not having something I typically take for granted to make me truly appreciate it.

The last two days, our cable Internet (which is also our phone) was on the fritz, not working for most of the day, coming on for a half hour at a time. Basically, being all around annoying. I am extremely thankful that I wasn't trying to work, which involves much Internet usage, and that I didn't need to call anyone (since I don't have a cell phone or any sort of backup phone).

I'm really appreciating that everything is working fine today!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Belated Acknowledgments

It occurred to me a few days ago that I've been receiving ARCs (advanced reading copies) of several novels in the past two or three months, none of which I've mentioned on my blog. This wasn't because the books weren't good. It was simply because these books have the misfortune of not fitting into the reading requirements I've felt lately (mainly lighthearted and fanciful). Nevertheless, I'm really looking forward to reading these novels, all by new-to-me authors, but I have to wait until I'm in the right mood, lest I not give them their due credit.

In no particular order:

The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane is a historical drama that blends modern-day graduate student Connie's life with that of her ancestors, and Connie learns that there's a possibility that all those tales of witches weren't made up. Two things drew me to this book: the witches, and the fact that Katherine Howe wrote it for National Novel Writing Month, something I've participated in two years in a row, and the reason I now have two full Madison novels to edit. (Since I can't offer my opinion yet, I can offer my mom's, who read the book and enjoyed it.)

The Invention of Everything Else is also a drama, this one about Louisa and her relationship with Nikola Tesla, the inventor, and, if I'm reading the back of the book right, about Louisa's own journey of self-discovery through the bond she forms with this visionary genius. When I first saw the title, I really hoped that it was nonfiction. I have a fascination with people who create real, touchable things out of their imagination. As real as my stories are to me (and as real as other people's stories are to me), they're still not physically tangible. When I discovered that it was a fiction novel, the book lost none of its appeal.

The Lost Throne has all the appeal of The Da Vinci Code and Indiana Jones combined in a "action-packed, thrilling novel" about a top-secret elite soldiers-turned-citizens who must recover a lost treasure before it can be destroyed by those who seek to protect it from being discovered. Really, need I say more? I've not read Chris Kuzneski's other novels (Sword of God or Sign of the Cross), but I'm hoping that this will be my gateway book to a whole new author.

Die For You cuts really close to my romance/thriller threshold, but just reading the back flap still gets me excited to read the novel, which is why it's still in my to-be-read pile. Isabel's husband disappears, and from there, it's a string of escalating surrealism for Isabel: the police are of no help; she searches her husbands place of work, only to be knocked unconscious during an FBI raid on the place; all her husband's coworkers are found dead; Isabel's money mysteriously vanishes from her accounts; and finally the man who she thought she loved has been dead for years, and she's been married to a complete stranger. That's a lot to give away on the back of a novel, which hints that there's going to be a lot more story inside. (My mom also read this novel and confirmed that it's a good read. She also allayed my fears that it would be too scary.)

I was drawn to Sacred Hearts strictly by the portrayal of the protagonist in the novel's description. The story is set in the sixteenth century, in a convent, which is far from my usual happy novel place. The main character, Serafina (great name, right?) is "willful, emotional," and furious for being sent to a convent, and her rebellious spirit rabble-rouses from within the convent walls. I love a strong female protagonist, especially one that finds her true self from amidst her more violent emotions. I like the exploration of the rawer side of women, something that doesn't happen in the romances I typically read (though I'll occasionally come across it in fantasy novels).

As you can see, all these novels sound like great reads, but not necessarily light reads. And I've waited so long to mention them that I believe they're all out in your local bookstores, so check them out.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

True Blood

If you've been reading my recent posts, you'll know that I love Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse novels. It only made sense that I'd be excited about the release of True Blood, the HBO show based on those novels, which was recently released on Netflix. Yet, with half the season watched, I'm still not sure what to think.

I love the novels for their great balance of imagination, horror, action, and humor—humor being a big part. The voice of Sookie is enjoyable as much because it is so strong as it is for her particular quirks that are both amusing and relatable. Seeing Sookie on the small screen doesn't always translate.

I think my biggest hangup is simply a result of the network that produced the series. Had PAX or even ABC produced True Blood, I think they would have made more of an effort to balance the emotional elements of the story. HBO, however, is a dark network, happy to parade the worst, pile on a little horror/violence, a little sex—okay, a lot of sex and a lot of violence—and they're light on humor. They did a great job of capturing the drama of the characters' lives, and of exploring the horrific, but in the process, they lost a bit of the lightness that is classic in the tales.

I really wanted to like this series. I really wanted to see certain scenes and how they would interpret them on screen. But every time I finish an episode, I feel off. It was the way I felt when I would watch a Deadwood episode. Like the negative of humanity had been presented as all there was to people, like that rawness was the only truth there is, and it didn't sit well with me.

I haven't watched an episode in two weeks, and I'm still debating whether to continue it or not. What was your take?

Monday, July 13, 2009

Madison Success

I sat down today feeling decidedly uninspired to work on Madison. I chalked it up to one of those things that sounds better when you're not doing it (like most adventures—I imagine that the people who climb Mt. Everest get a lot more enjoyment out of planning and later telling their tale than they do during the arduous climb and mind-numbing, body-mutilating temperatures, but I digress). I started distracted after a plethora of morning chores that multiplied every time I finished one, and I finally pushed it all aside to work.

I wrote for 3.5 hours today and got 3,200+ words of a new scene down. It felt great. I went out for some exercise immediately afterward and figured out a few bits that I'll need to change before I go on to write the next scene, but it's so much easier to change and add to a scene that's there than it is to start fresh, so I'm not too worried about that. All in all, I'm feeling very pleased with myself. Today was definitely a success!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Restless Reading

I couldn't stick with Janet Evanovich's Full House. After praising her Stephanie Plum series, this earlier work fell flat. Which was completely unexpected since I've liked several of her other "screwball comedy" novels.

There was only one thing to do: go out and buy Charlaine Harris's From Dead to Worse, which was the book that I was missing before I can read the book I coerced Cody into buying for me. I bought this one myself, so I've already broken my no-book-buying rule. Sigh. What's a girl with an addiction like mine to do?

Indulge is the word that comes to mind. I'm several chapters into FDtW and loving it.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Admiration for Brevity

I'm naturally long-winded in my writing. I do a lot of trimming and a lot of word swaps to find the one word that says what a sentence used to say. I really enjoy that part, because I feel like I'm refining my writing into something more perfect, something that pulls the reader along without them even realizing it. I want to be one of those authors that people stay up all night reading because they simply can't resist the next line.

For me, Janet Evanovich, especially Evanovich's Stephaine Plum novels, is that type of author. She's a master and an inspiration for me. She packs so much into each novel, so much action, adventure, and humor. She's got enough romance to keep me happy, too. But more than that, she gets the most out of every word—descriptions that fit into a sentence and scenes that fit on a page, and all of it feels as complete as if I'd been standing right next to the characters, and she didn't have to beat me over the head with pages and pages of filler text. It's all very impressive, and I try to make myself go slow enough to appreciate it, as difficult as that is.

I just finished Seven Up, and I normally don't like to read the same author back to back, but I'm going to be forced to this time. And by forced I mean this: Remember when I coerced Cody into buying me a book so I wouldn't break my self-inflicted rule of no book buying for three months? And remember how it had to be the next Charlaine Harris Sookie Stackhouse novel? Well, it turns out that I don't have the novel before the one that Cody purchased for me (something I discovered after reading two pages of the new book and discovering a huge spoiler!).

Having had my heart set on a Harris novel, and not having one to read, I roamed through my to-be-read piles and did the first-line test to see which appealed to me. Evanovich's romance novel Full House won because she mentions polo in the first sentence, and I was just telling Cody that my list of things I want to do before I die is up to two things, and one of them is play polo. (The other is do some bungee jumping stuff like in the first Lara Croft movie.) I'm looking forward to a funny read, and while this tides me over, maybe the book fairy will bring me the missing Harris novel.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Roads of Research

There's a part of me that never wants to stop attending school of some sort. I don't necessarily like the structure of school or the inflexibility, and anyone who knows me knows that I didn't always focus on the learning part of school when I was in it so much as the grade. But I like the idea of never stopping actively learning.

Writing has given me some strange knowledge that I never expected to learn. In the course of the Madison novels I've worked on, I've researched assorted animals, some real, some imaginary, some long extinct, most exotic. I've taken notes at veterinary hospitals (and, oddly, been far too prophetic about what would happen to a few animals in my life, which has made me leery about writing bad things about animals). I've learned police lingo, as well as that of World of Warcraft fans.

Most recently, I'm going to have to figure out the abilities of cell phones. Unlike 99% of the population of America, I don't have a cell phone and neither does Cody. So I don't know how to change ringtones, if it costs money, and if you can send pictures to email addresses. These are things that Madison would know, though.

I did have a weird moment yesterday when I realized I needed to do some research on knives and I thought that I would just pop on down the road to a store called Accessories and More. Only, that's the name of a store in my novel that would sell knives, and no such store really exists. Yet there was that moment when I envisioned myself walking down the store aisles and talking with the men behind the counter who are far more knowledgeable about knives than either Madison or I ever will be. It was a bit surreal for a moment. And then a bit of a let-down when I realized the research wasn't going to be that easy.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Madison Time!

Yesterday and today have been devoted to Madison, and I've loved it. After the incredibly busy June month in which I worked on Madison a whopping two times, I've really enjoyed these days of focusing on my passion! I'm still editing book one, but today I reached a part where I've got to write a couple of new scenes—scenes that I've been looking forward to since I realized they were missing. I'll most likely write those tomorrow. I thought I'd get to them today, but I've been editing by hand (mainly so I can leave the house—I don't have a laptop, so computer mobility is out of the question), and I haven't wanted to pause to implement anything. Now it seems important to do before I continue on writing, mainly because I think it'll save a boatload of confusion (and time) later on.

I got in about three hours of work today in between all those other things that were also put on the back burner (like cleaning the bathrooms). I'm looking forward to getting more done tomorrow. I thought I might get another chapter entered into the computer tonight, but after my afternoon exercise and then scrubbing the tub for a half hour, I'm done for the day.

Monday, July 6, 2009

No Question, Only a Comment

Normally I'd answer the question posed at Number One Novels today, but there's no question, and for a very good reason. Today, debut author Kandy Shepherd will be frequenting the blog to answer questions posed to her. It's the best day of the week to drop by and enter the contest.

I don't think Shepherd will have free time the rest of this week to come back, considering her book launches on Tuesday, so grab the chance while you can!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Restless Night Keepers

I just finished new-to-me author Jessica Andersen's novel Night Keepers, the first in The Final Prophecy series about a race of people whose sole purpose is to save the world from demonic destruction come December 21, 2012.

Given my strange fascination with the prophesied apocalypse, my flirtation with history, and my love of paranormal romances, this book had a lot of compelling elements to it. And I could spend a blog praising the author's devotion to hot male leads (and female, if you're into that), good solid writing, amazing depth of research, etc., but my final impression is this: it made me restless.

More accurately, I'm not sure if I was simply restless when I read this novel or if its rhythm and pace made me restless. I've got book two on my shelves, but I'm going to take a break between these two to determine if it's Andersen's writing or me.

I might have chalked it totally up to me, except for the fact that there were too many times when I was reading the novel when I was irritated by the shift in character focus. This is not a novel that focuses on the two main characters and their quest and troubles in finding love. Night Keepers bounces between a cast of characters, delving to inconsistent depths in their lives before flitting off to the next character. Obviously, as the first in a series, Andersen needed to build the world, and given the circumstances, bring together a host of characters for some pretty amazing battles. I found myself often wanting a little more depth or time with the main characters, and either a consistent less or more depth with the secondary characters.

I felt scattered at the end of this novel, but I don't feel like writing this book or this author off (as I was tempted with Benson). I think knowing a little more what I'm getting into, I'll wait on the sequel until I'm ready for a large-cast, more plot-focused novel.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Heroic Dreams

Jessica Andersen's magic- and warrior-filled novel must be wearing off on me, because I've had some spectacular dreams lately. The best was one in which I was interviewing before a panel of department heads at a local college for a position in their graduate program to write my next novel and simultaneously obtain my graduate degree in creative writing. In the dream, I argued incredibly eloquently (far more so than the two other interviewees who where there at the same time), but it was my incredible skill against the demons that really made me shine.

Yes, you read that right. Demons attacked the campus, and using some pretty spectacular magic, I burned a circle through the wall, much like you'd cut a window with a diamond blade, so that it fell away to reveal the outside world. We were on the top floor of a very tall building, now looking out over a city not unlike New York. The demons were huge, somewhat like the Transformers in non-car form, but fleshed and winged and flying. And I took each of them out while my companion interviewees ineffectually threw magical grenades that fell to the ground and hit nothing.

I totally landed that graduate position!

Friday, July 3, 2009

One Week

That's how long I lasted: one week. One week of no book purchases, and then Borders put out their first-ever 50% off coupon for the latest Charlaine Harris novel. I couldn't pass up a deal like that, could I?

Yes, yes I could. But only after letting Cody know that it wouldn't be breaking my self-imposed rule if he purchased it for me. And then forwarding him the email with the coupon. And then threatening (email) tears if he didn't buy it for me.

Which prompted Cody to ask me why I decided upon this book-buying limitation in the first place. Honestly? ... I couldn't remember! Something noble. Something about not needing any more books. Something about how I had plenty to read.

Still, a goal is a goal. So with Cody having purchased this one book (at this incredible deal—TikiBird, you were so right about being lured in by the next coupon!), I'm back on track. Cody fears that come the end of September I'm going to crack and buy so many books they'll be piled to the ceilings, taking up all the floorspace in the house except for tiny pathways that allow us to get from room to room.

One can only hope.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Sidecar Dreams Updated

Shaida recently left this link in the comments to Sidecar Muse. Following the link, I found this delightful sidecar:

The Laverda sidecar has now become my ideal sidecar, from which I could view the passing scenery, write the latest Madison novel, and be comfortable. Added plus, Cody would still get to ride a motorcycle, feel the bugs impact his helmet (I'd make him get a full-face helmet), and savor the wind against his head-to-toe leather outfit (again, if he's going to be exposed to possible road rash, he's going to be geared in the most protective clothing I can find).

Cody's seat.

My new "office."

I think that I'd write some pretty crazy stuff strapped into this vehicle! Now to convince Cody that we need it and figure out how to get one to the US.