It's gray and drizzly outside, and has been since I rolled out of bed this morning. I've been sleeping well lately, which is lovely; but on mornings when I have to get up early it's problematic. I don't want to get up, which is a nice change from all those awful sleepless nights I used to suffer through.
I'm writing a lot these days, thanks for asking. I find myself wanting to work on short stories (right? Who AM I?) more than anything else, but am keeping my nose firmly affixed to the grindstone, as it were, and getting inexorably closer each day to finishing projects. Periodically I do freak out about everything I need to get finished by the end of the year (AIEEEEE!) but hey, what else is new, right?
I am now rereading James M. Cain's Love's Lovely Counterfeit
(I am thinking, despite my enormous and ever growing TBR pile) that a thorough reread of Cain is necessary; I've also never read all of Cain's canon--because of that I don't want to ever know there isn't more Cain to read thing I do with a lot of dead authors I love, like du Maurier and Highsmith--and I do love rereading his work. I do think he has had a lot more influence on me as a writer than I've thought or realized before; but I think his influence is more felt in my stand-alones and my short stories than in my series novels. Love's Lovely Counterfeit
is one of his lesser-known novels--everyone knows The Postman Always Rings Twice, Double Indemnity,
and Mildred Pierce
--but I remember this one, when I first started reading Cain back in the earliy 1980's, as one of my favorites of his (currently Serenade
holds that honor; really an extraordinary work, especially for when it was published originally; and I definitely need to read that one again), but I don't really remember what it's about; other than gangsters and politics in a large Midwestern city called Lake City (gee, I wonder which city that was supposed to be?). I started reading it again last night while I was waiting for Paul to come downstairs to stream an episode of Twelve Monkeys
with me, and this line:which was standard for hotels of the first class in cities of the second class
which I wish to God I had written. Genius, really.
It's really amazing what you can do with specific word choices and how you can make the rhythm of those chosen words create a mood. I can totally visualize that hotel lobby; because I have been in hotels of the first class in cities of the second class before.
And of course, reading the first few pages of this brilliant novel has given me ideas for several stories and book ideas already.
Perhaps I should get back to the spice mines else I'll never get to write 1/10th of everything I want to write.
Here's an Olympic athlete: