Adelina has gone back to that place where she goes when she is not guest blogging. To be honest, I’m a little fuzzy on where exactly that is. I do think she may come back and guest blog from time-to-time when she is not planting beets or jello wrestling.
May has been a remarkably busy month. Most of my free time has been devoted to the edits on my next book, Death and White Diamonds. A month ago, my publisher told me that much of the book is great. But there were a couple of story elements that were flawed. In essence, he challenged me to make the entire book great. I have devoted the month of May to taking up his challenge. The re-write is now finished. On Tuesday, I plan to proofread the changes one last time and send the file back to my publisher.
Did I meet my publisher’s challenge? That is not for me to decide. But I will say this much. A month ago, I thought it was the best thing I had written. Today, I know it is better than it was 30 days ago. Soon enough, I will start to hear from the people who really matter. From readers. So, as Adelina might say, there is that.
Today, my wife and I are celebrating our 34th wedding anniversary. I have no particular words of wisdom regarding marriage, except perhaps this quote from a refrigerator magnet. “If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” Or perhaps, it’s about the scene in As Good as It Gets, when Jack Nicholson says to Helen Hunt, “You make me want to be a better man.”
Anyway, what are we doing to celebrate? Last night, we entertained a few friends, but that was not about our anniversary. You don’t need an anniversary to cook mussels for good friends, four pounds of mussels cooked in white wine with grilled chorizo and fresh thyme. And you certainly don’t need an anniversary to enjoy a little blood-orange gelato. We didn’t push our chairs back from the dining room table until well past midnight, but this morning, I was on the computer at 6:30, re-writing one scene and adding a new scene that propels the story to an action-packed conclusion. This afternoon, I planted a euonymus and a butterfly bush in the perennial bed. My wife is, apparently, puttering in the vegetable garden.
When my second book was published in 2006 (A Minor Case of Murder) I dedicated the book to my wife. I wrote,
“Now that I write murder mysteries, I see dead bodies most everywhere that I go. On more than one occasion, I have recounted for my wife Carol the details of her gruesome and untimely demise. Carol listens and smiles and encourages me to write. She is a lover of good murder mysteries and seems to count my stories among the good ones. Carol is not my most objective reader. But I didn’t marry her for her objectivity.”
I no longer recount for Carol the details of her gruesome and untimely demise. But at breakfast this morning, I did tell her how Jon dug up a maggot-infested duffel bag filled with decomposing body parts.
Life is good. I hope it is good where you are too.