Friday, November 29, 2013


Our Thanksgiving holiday just happened here yesterday -- for readers outside the United States, it's an annual celebration of food, family, and televised (American) football. This year it's also been the unfortunate victim of the capitalistic tendency to get amped up about Christmas and the Christmas shopping season, to the point where stored were open on Thanksgiving Day, a concept that would have been unheard of just a few years back. You won't find me huddling in a parking lot line, waiting to join a mob rushing for cheap TVs -- no surprise -- since we still try to keep Thanksgiving around here as sane and low-key as possible. I"ve had my share of quiet ones, and I've had my share of busy ones, where every relative and friend of the family has a plate piled high and is pushed into any available seating they can find. Both kinds are excellent, but I can't think that camping out since Wednesday night -- yes, really -- is the way to go, not even in the mild late fall weather of California. Sorry, retailers: I'm eating leftover pie this morning with a coffee and being grateful for my family.

As is traditional in our house, and in many others, we go around the table before Thursday's big meal and each say something we're thankful for. Watching my kids roll their eyes at dad's dorky traditionsis just another gift I'm giving to them, one that I hope they'll remember and continue with their own families when they're seated around their own family tables someday. I usually point out that I'm thankful for them, and for time off from work, and for not going shopping, and for my wife's excellent cranberry sauce and for pie (I tend to cut loose in the pastry-baking department.)

And of course, dear Typosphere, I'm thankful for you all. For your expertise and experience, your good humor, your scholarship, excellent photography, and general cleverness. I'm thankful for NaNoWriMo and the chance to cut loose in the creativity department (always trying to finish before the pies) and I'm always thankful for the Brigade and their goofy madness. I'm thankful that we're able to rise above and shrug off labels like "hipster" and support one another without being egotistical or exclusive about it. I'm thankful for repair shops and repair links! I'm thankful for yard sales and church basement sales and thrift stores, and am equally thankful for the strength not to bring home every orphan machine. My wife is thankful for that, too.

Normal operations should be starting up again here next month. My NaNo draft is done, my brain is relaxed, and I think work might be getting back to a more normal pace again.

Monday, November 18, 2013

The Horizon from 46,425*

I can't see it yet, but I can feel it... the end of the NaNoWriMo sprint. The end of the story, and the end of the early-morning wake up call. Characters have changed, plots have shuffled around, details have filled themselves in. I'm just channeling the muse, trying to keep the plane level and the course as straight as possible.

Honing in on the horizon. That's me.

* Wordcount estimate puts me with about 3,500 words to go. OCR counting says I crossed the line a day and a half ago. I'm going with the estimates, because I know how many typos are keeping the Rhino aloft right now.

Friday, November 1, 2013


Morning came really early after canvassing the neighborhood with my girls for candy last night. I'm out of practice for sure, and those first few pages are crazy rough and confused. But I have coffee, and a rhino, and I've begun. Everybody raise a mug to the gods of momentum: may they see all Wrimos through the lean times this month.

November dreaming