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Showing posts from October, 2017

A Fall Menu for Writers

Breakfast:  Pie à la modeMore pie if it's cold outside. More mode if the day is globally warmed. Listen to that old guy in your family who always said you should eat dessert first in case you die today. It's true.

Early Bird SpecialIf you wake up very early to write, or if you can't handle all that sugar on an empty stomach, then  begin noshing before dawn on something very savory, like chilaquiles with beans or green tea soba noodles with fermented-fish soup base. Wake up to new and interesting flavors.

Remember to save room for your pie and ice cream.

Lunch:  On Fire It doesn't much matter what's for lunch, as long as it's on fire. The food itself can be literally on fire, as in  flaming saganaki, or it can be cooked with fire, or it can be something that simply lights you up. OPA!

Is it cold outside? Do you have a fireplace or woodstove? Roast, sear, or cauldron-boil whatever you find in the fridge. Never mind cooking with love. That's all fine and good…

This Is What Productivity Looks Like

When my coffee table develops a sense of humor like this, you know my mind has been engaged. I like to consider it one of those "signs of creative genius," you know, like drinking too much, sleeping too little, or swearing like a sailor. (You can find a report of scientific evidence of every kind of adulting failure or personal vice as a sign of genius, and I recommend it. It makes you feel great without having to change your habits, like watching an episode of Hoarders instead of cleaning your house.) However, I think a dinosaur has laid an egg under an old magazine back there. Hmm.

I've been immersed in my novel these past few weeks, taking notes on archaeology texts, watching documentaries, filling in my outline, and sketching out scenes and dialog. It's been a slow process of deepening my settings and characters and weaving historical insights into my plot, with little new writing happening, but I've still pushed the manuscript over 35,000 words.

And now tha…

Still Hot

Still Hot, A List: OctoberMindyTillWonder WomanDem Shoes
1. October As my friend Esperanza says, October is still hot "because of these beautiful global warming days." Sometimes it's too hot for me to bake pies, and that ain't right, but we make do. I know it's weird, but sometimes we must resort to the pumpkin pie ice cream from Quality Dairy.

2. The Mindy Project Speaking of Esperanza, she subscribed to Hulu so we could catch up on The Mindy Project together. There is nothing in the world like this show, which bounces gracefully between potty humor and super soapy dramz. Plus a parade of hot, objectified men. We watched the classic "Diamond Dan" episode twice in a row even though we had both seen it before already. Sometimes that's what you have to do when you have talked and giggled through all the brilliant dialog. We wouldn't want to lose the... thread.

3. Till Lindemann Speaking of hot, objectified men, Till Lindemann's book of photog…

Raison D'être Made from Scratch

Some things are best made from scratch, like birthday cakes and cards designed by a first grader. Or Halloween costumes. Or historical novels. Or raison d'être.

This is the cake my daughter helped me bake and then designed and decorated by herself, for her uncle's birthday. (Later, it had sparkler candles on it.)

She also made him a card with a joke in it: "What did the pumpkin say to the person?"

There was no answer.

Pumpkins don't talk.


You know what's not hilarious? I've gotten so accustomed to having a friend near the site of a terrorist attack that I am not even shocked anymore when I log onto Facebook and see my feed start with "marked safe" posts about "the recent violent incident." 

I've taken a cue from my daughter, as I often do in times of bleak current events, to turn away from the horrors outside my direct sphere of control and ask myself, "What is the easiest thing I could do right now to create joy?&…