In an admirable example of “ask and ye shall receive,” I recently expressed a desire to have my book banned, and a longtime reader complied. She didn’t hesitate in banning my book on her blog.
Thank you, Stephanie. You’re awesome.
And really, she’s more than a blogger: I consider her a friend. How could I not? We’ve been reading one another for years (though until recently, she took an extended hiatus from blogging), and back in 2016, she and her husband met up with me and Tara in Portland while they were vacationing there. It was a fun night that included fried chicken, moody piano music, and (because this was the city that embraces weirdness), creepy undead people in the bathroom. You can read about it here.
I love meeting bloggers IRL. There have been at least a dozen over the years. Maybe someday I’ll even get to meet you.
Even better than Stephanie’s book banning was the inspiration she has given me to move forward with a sequel to No Time for Kings. I’d been toying with the idea for a while and have what I think is a pretty good idea; with her encouragement, I am beginning to feel excited about revisiting characters I’m quite fond of. There was always that thought in the back of my mind that one day I might continue their story, but I wanted to explore other options first. We creative types don’t like to get pigeonholed, and while I have yet to publish Dream Sailors, that itch has been scratched. I think I’m ready to take the plunge now (well, not right this second, but soon). Maybe I’ll do the whole NaNoWriMo thing this year.
By the way, if anybody is interested in being a beta reader for Dream Sailors, let me know. Maybe that’ll be the nudge I need to either go all-in on getting it published, or shelving it instead.
My parents left today after a nine-day visit. I think they were concerned they were overstaying their welcome, because my dad wrote this on our weekly menu planner for today.
Which is funny, but also, a little sad. Are we happy to be able to enjoy our normal routine once again after a week and a half? I’d be lying if I said no. But it’s also sobering to think we probably won’t see them again for at least seven months.
Their trip was booked long ago when we’d planned our family reunion, which would have taken place during this stretch if not for Covid. Everybody else cancelled, but they soldiered on, and it turned out to be a smart decision because they avoided all the off-the-charts unhealthy air quality that resulted from smoke from the PNW wildfires, which has finally dissipated after eight days. Unfortunately, we had some of that smoke out here, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as what they had to put up with.
Plus, you know, we enjoy their company.
My favorite day was probably yesterday. We went out to lunch and then visited the D.C. Booth Fish Hatchery in Spearfish. Afterward, we stopped at Belle Joli Winery to pick up our fall wine pack, followed by a scenic drive through Vanocker Canyon. The fall colors are popping already—probably because of our early snowfall and cold temps.
And then, when we came home, we lounged on the patio with beer, wine, cider, and bourbon, depending on our personal preference. I grilled Hawaiian chicken and beat my dad at corn hole. Couldn’t have asked for a better day!
Next weekend, Tara and I are headed to Sioux Falls. We’ve been looking forward to checking out South Dakota’s largest city for some time now, and figured we should take advantage before the cold and snow sets in this winter.
I’m going to leave you with a pun, because I’d really like to go out on a high note.
Q: What do Winnie The Pooh and Alexander The Great have in common?
A: The same middle name.