We’re adjusting to life without Bunny and Fluffy and finding that life does, indeed, go on.
And we are adjusting to a much smaller living space (discovering that we actually like the smaller space better!) and adjusting to the endless, endless, ENDLESS driving in order to get anywhere.
In case I wasn’t clear before — I am only renting this faraway house until I find a townhouse I want to buy back in “town,” as it were. So the endless driving won’t go on forever.
I am in the process of trying to streamline my schedule in order to settle back into writing again. I’m still a bit discombobulated by the many changes in my life — all during the last several months. The fact that I will have to move again in the not-too-distant future keeps me from really feeling settled in, but we’re getting there.
Also, just FYI, by “we” I mean myself and 8 cats… (The cats who will soon be earning their keep by being featured prominently in my upcoming mystery book, The Miracle Cats and the Case of the Purloined Passport.)
I’m guessing that with both Oscar-winning Judi Dench and oft-nominated-though-never-Oscar-winning Johnny Depp in the cast, their budget for creating a really splendid re-creation of the Orient Express train will undoubtedly be through the roof!! (YES! Diagram that sentence if you feel foolhardy enough!)
Also, at least in the tabloid gossip, Johnny Depp is rumored to be re-attached to his ex-common-law-wife, Vanessa Paradis. I have no idea of this is even partially true, gang, but I, for one, think it would be so great if it were true! For reasons I cannot reveal here, I am a Certified Expert on the number of times Johnny Depp has smiled in his entire life — the number is 5, by the way. And 4 of those times occurred while he was with Vanessa.
(Do you recall this photo?? This was the 2nd known time he smiled in his entire life…)
We shall see, right, gang? Meanwhile, life goes on… Have a terrific November 10th wherever you are, whatever you’re doing — and, most importantly these days, to wherever you might be driving!!
The final revisions were made yesterday to my TV movie script, The Tea Cozy Murder Club: A Murder At Parsons Ridge, AND I did the highly implausible: I wrote a logline that the producer said was “excellent”.
That’s a first.
Normally, my loglines suck. I usually marvel in awe at writers who can come up with a decent logline right off the top of their heads — or even right after they tinker with it for several days, laboring slavishly. I thought the one I came up with for Tea Cozy Murder Club was serviceable, at best. I imagined the producer would tinker with it until it was better than serviceable.
When he emailed me back and said it was excellent, I was dumbfounded. (“How can that be?” I wondered. “If I was the one who wrote it?”)
This is the logline (drum roll, please): The members of a small town book club that delights in solving cozy old whodunits suddenly find themselves with a very real not-so-cozy murder to solve.
Yes, you guessed it! The Tea Cozy Murder Club: A Murder At Parsons Ridge is a cozy mystery. (So is The Miracle Cats and the Case of the Purloined Passport — see numerous posts below.) Even though everyone the world over knows me for my super-duper killer award-winning literary erotica, I haven’t written in that genre for nearly 10 years, and I only read it now when I’m hired to edit it. Nowadays, I only read religious tomes (this one is jaw-droppingly awesome and needs to be read by everybody you’ve ever known), or cozy mysteries. (I’m currently reading this one, by Louise Penny.)
So, the great news is that the producer will be taking The Tea Cozy Murder Club to a meeting with a production company in L.A. next week! I will keep you posted on how much they love it.
On the Fluffy front (see post below about how my beloved Fluffy has advanced cancer): she is still with us and that makes it a great day! She is quite frail, though. This morning, at dawn, I scooped her up really gently in my arms and took her over to the screen door so that she could see the beautiful world that was awakening outside. It really was lovely out — and cool! 57 degrees! Fluffy was so alert and entranced by the outside world. The greenery everywhere, the flowers blooming and, most importantly, the happy birds chirping like mad.
I just love Fluffy. I will deal with my grief when I have to. For now, it’s just a perfect day.
Well, okay. On that note…Thanks for visiting, gang! Have a perfect day, too, wherever you are and whatever it finds you doing! See ya!
Since tomorrow is April 1st, it looks like it’s only been about 2 MONTHS since I last posted anything here (but what a fine and lively post it was! I hope you all listened to that wonderfully fun song! I am still listening to it in my car.) (Not exclusively — I listen to quite a panoply of Frank Sinatra tunes from the 40s & 50s while driving in my 19 (!!!) year-old car…)
Okay. Many updates occurred while I was absent from the blog. Some of them traumatizing — for instance, any and all developers and private real estate investors suddenly and without warning dropped all interest in commercializing my specific block on my street here in Gahanna.
This means that after keeping me in limbo for 3 and 1/2 years, telling me they were tearing my house down and re-zoning my block for commercial use, and hence my reasonably-foreseeable-future plans of moving back to New York — all of it came to a grinding halt.
It has something to do with City Hall, taxes, other residents, unhappy voters. So now I am basically working around the clock to afford all the many, many repairs this poor house needs to make it livable again.
I know that the absolute minute I get it back to being the sweet little dream house it once was, they will knock on my door yet again and tell me they are tearing it down. But you know what? We’ll just have to see what we see. I can’t live in limbo anymore with a house falling down around my ears.
The one-woman musical I’m working on with the actress in New York is basically done. Yay!! I think the premiere will be in Toronto, though, not New York City. I will keep you posted about that. It has something to do with funding from the Canadian Arts Council. But I can tell you, with complete certainty, that it is a GREAT show!! I am so thrilled to be a part of it.
Now she and I have 3 more plays/musicals to write together. I’m guessing that will keep me busy for a huge number of years. (The actress has been working on the above-mentioned one-woman show for maybe 7 years already. Writing, re-writing, workshopping it, performing it — it won an award in Canada already. Then I came on board to help significantly re-write it about 2-3 years ago. These things really do take forever.)
I have also finished writing my TV movie script for The Tea Cozy Murder Club!! It goes off to the producer in L.A. on Friday. He is excited to read it and I am super-duper excited to send it to him! This is an idea I have been developing for about 4 or 5 years. Now, I need to start writing the novels that go along with the TV movies (there is, at the very least, a series of 4.)
The mystery book series I’m writing with my illustrator friend in Brooklyn is still moving forward (The Miracle Cats and the Case of the Purloined Passport). We had to put it on hold, though, momentarily, until I completed the script for my other project because the producer’s assistant emailed me and asked if I was planning to wait on sending it until after the producer retired….
Anyway, so I finally had to stop juggling everything at once, and write one thing at a time. But now we are back to The Miracle Cats. Here’s the latest illustration. It is “Sister Thomasina”:
I am also researching and putting notes together for a one-man play I want to write. I will go over more of those details as it goes along. But I’m very excited about it. It is somewhat connected to my ministry, but I won’t say more than that, lest I send you off on a complete tangent that would be wholly inaccurate.
Now that I’m done with school and staring down several years’ worth of paying off student loans… I am now learning Ancient Greek, and re-learning Biblical Hebrew (which I studied as a child, so a lot of that comes back to me). Anyway, learning them both at once is not really so daunting as it might seem because they have similarities. Sort of. Plus, I am strictly doing it on my own time and at my own pace, so it is really invigorating and fun.
I doubt I will ever learn enough Ancient Greek or live long enough to translate the Septuagint on my own, but we can dream, can’t we??? I’m already planning to write my own version of The Jefferson Bible (my minster at church refers to my plans as The Lewis Bible and it may well be that!). And I fully, fully intend to do this and maybe even publish it online! We shall see…
So, that’s it. That’s it. That’s where I’ve been. It is completely, 100% thoroughly safe to say that I am exhausted. But that’s how it goes sometimes.
Right now, it’s a wonderfully rainy spring morning. The birds are singing outside my window and the many, many cats who live here are planted at the screen door, looking out at the beautiful, wet, singing world. I hope it’s just as peaceful and promising where you’re at today, gang. Thanks for visiting! See ya down the road.
As excited as I was for my Halloween night at home, I spent it entirely differently than I had thought I would. (See post from Thursday.)
Yesterday morning, I decided that I was going to be diligent and do homework all afternoon, but that plan lasted until about 12:15 PM when I found I could no longer resist the temptation to go down to the family room and watch the episode of Father Brown that I had DVR’d the night before. And once that happened, I was not going back to that homework idea…
However, none of the Halloween movies appealed to me this year. And when I noticed that Amazon Prime was offering free streaming of Radio Days, one of my most very favorite Woody Allen films, I dropped everything and watched that. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen that movie since it came out in 1987; I have lost track. But I never get tired of it. IT is so charming and uplifting. And the soundtrack is to die for (for me, anyway — someone who loves to live in the past!)
Which reminds me that another one of my favorite films is on tonight — on Turner Classic Movies: Dame Margaret Rutherford in Murder Most Foul!! I have to say that Dame Margaret had the strangest take on Miss Marple ever, but it is still really fun to watch her movies. She made 4 Miss Marple movies — this one is the one where she joins a local theatrical troupe in a small English village in order to, of course, solve a murder. It is really fun — made in England in 1964.
Even though I’m going to DVR this, I will probably stay up and watch it tonight, since tomorrow we set the clocks back anyway. I won’t miss any sleep.
This weekend is the final weekend of the course I’m taking in school, so I have a final project to write, plus 3 other shorter papers to write. Then I have one last course to take and I graduate (still on track for magna cum laude!). Kind of hard to believe that, come Christmas, I will suddenly have so much free time. I am going to spend all that free time packing and throwing stuff away and getting ready for yet another out-of-state move. This will be my 4th long-distance move and hopefully it will be my last. (Well, I don’t mind if I move to another house, I just don’t want to move out of state again. It is a lot to deal with, especially now that I will be transporting a colony of feral cats with me.)
Although, I have to say, they get less feral all the time. Here is a shot of Weenie on my bed last night, while I was watching Hetty Wainthropp Investigates. He is very comfortable around me, although most of the time, he won’t let me pet him. He’s getting better about that, though.
Okay, I guess I better close this and start working. I’m going to make a pot of butternut squash soup (the easiest soup ever — boil the squash, an onion, celery and a carrot, 4 small peeled potatoes, sea salt and a dash of red pepper flakes for about 30 minutes, then puree it!), finish the laundry, then get crackin’ on all that homework.
Have a wonderful (meaningful?) All Soul’s Day, wherever you are, gang! Thanks for visiting. See ya!
[Fantastic opening credit music to Murder Most Foul!]
I just wanted to take a minute to plug a friend’s new book, gang. If you enjoy historical fiction that’s meticulously researched, and if you love murder mysteries that just pile on more and more and MORE mystery, I really think you will enjoy this book.
It takes place during the era of Jack the Ripper in London, and there are also some really great sections in Paris that center around the Eiffel Tower, which is still under construction in the book. There are political uprisings and mysterious murders and illegal grave-digging and kidnapping and sword fighting and ghosts and madhouses and an illicit romance, and also all that gory Jack the Ripper stuff. Oh yes, and fast pursuit and gun shots on a train!
It got off to kind of a slow start, because it is completely written in the tone of a bored upper class Englishman from the 19th Century. It took a chapter for me to get into that voice. But all of the sudden, the story just took off and then I couldn’t put it down. It was a really FUN read to get lost in. And it is the first in a trilogy, so I am really looking forward to the next installment, which I heard is due in March 2015.
Heirs of Glory just came out this week. You can buy it in paperback, hardcover or Kindle at this link.