Monday, October 26, 2009

Book Update

I just received a review copy of my Skyler book - Bethany read it in about an hour and found a handful of typo's for me. She's a remarkable editor.

I really like how the story came together. It's MUCH shorter than I'd wanted it to be, but when the story ended, it ended. I could go back through and make it longer, but I'm not sure that would make it any better. There are a few scenes I could maybe expand a bit... but I probably won't. It's actually a pretty tight little story if I do say so myself, with each scene moving the action along and developing the characters. Not a lot of extraneous bits.

And I was thinking how cool it would be to turn Skyler into a graphic novel. Anyone know any aspiring artists who might want to take on a project like this?

I also recently read the first Boomer Sisters book (Meet The Boomer Sisters) to Jenna as a bedtime story, and I have to admit, I didn't really like it. There are some good scenes in it, and some good ideas, but the book now strikes me as being deeply flawed. As I've said before, all my books are experiments, and as experiments go, MTBS was successful. But I really should rewrite it some day. We're reading the second book in the series now (The Boomer Sisters Meet Champy), and I'm enjoying it a lot more.

It'll be interesting to see what I think of Skyler 5 years from now...

Monday, October 19, 2009


I really enjoy the tv show Castle. I mean, how many shows are there where the main character is a writer? It's a nice twist on the detective / police / murder-mystery show.

Come to think of it, most of the cop/detective shows I like involve main characters who are not actually cops/detectives (Monk - he's a former cop; Psych - he's the son of a cop; Fringe - FBI agent + mad scientist & son; Numbers - the professor is the brother of an FBI agent; The Mentalist - he's a former psychic entertainer). Hmmm - that's a topic for another day, perhaps.

Anyway, I mention Castle because of an interesting literary tie-in. It turns out the fictional author Richard Castle (played by Nathan Fillion) has published a real book: Heat Wave. The book is featured in the show, and is also available at fine bookstores everywhere. I haven't read it yet, and I don't know who actually wrote it, but it looks pretty interesting and is getting some good reviews.

I just think it's cool that they broke the fourth wall in such an original and literal way.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Automatic Lights

One of the coolest things I've done to this house (or really, to any house I've lived in) is install motion-detecting lights in the laundry room.

This way, as soon as you step into the room, carrying a basket of laundry, you don't have to fumble around for a light switch (or, in our case, walk half way through a dark laundry room to the pull chain, while carrying a large basket of laundry). Instead, as soon as you open the door, the light turns on, automagically! And when you leave, a minute or two later, it goes out. The best part is, the fixtures only cost $10 each (I installed two).

I highly recommend this for any laundry room that is moderately large and doesn't receive natural light (i.e. our Basement Of Doom).

Monday, October 5, 2009

Trader Joe's

We've got a Trader Joe's grocery store nearby, and I love it there. It's small, not a huge selection, but they've got really good prices and stuff I can't find anywhere else. Plus it's just a really groovy environment to hang out in.

And one of the most remarkable things is a question I've heard several times at the checkout line. The cashier asks "So, did you stick to your list today?"

Really? Not the usual "Did you find everything you were looking for?" but "Did you stick to your list?"

It seems to me it's in their financial interest for me to NOT stick to my list. They make money if I buy extra stuff that I didn't plan to buy. But instead, they're expressing an interest in actually helping me, and wondering if I bought more than I'd planned to (and this question comes up even on a small trip).

Anyway, I just thought that was a cool question to ask.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Count Down Begins

Today is the first day of the last month in which I will be a Major. On Nov 1st, I'll officially be a Lieutenant Colonel.

Wow, that still feels weird.