It’s the day before Thanksgiving in America, which means that many of us are looking at a turkey that is refusing to defrost and thinking grumpy thoughts about cranberry molds. Not me; I’m thawing out turkey wings in preparation for making insanely good gravy to go with insanely good dressing and turkey. There will also be pumpkin custard and possibly garlic smashed potatoes. Then I’ll go back to making hats and scarves for Christmas presents and finishing Nita. It’s just that kind of day.
So this should have been up weeks ago, but as we all know, I’m forgetful, and I lost Deb’s book in the chaos. This is particularly bad because Deb has been an Argher forever, and I could never forget her in general. Argh.
Deb’s book is The Little Book of Cat Magic:
Deepen the bond between you and your cats as you practice magic together. This wonderful and witchy book is filled with a wide variety of spells, enchantments, and recipes that will improve the life you share with them. From finding and naming a new cat to working with a feline as a familiar, The Little Book of Cat Magic has something for everyone who loves cats and magic. Learn about cats throughout history as well as the myths, folklore, and deities associated with them. Explore spells for living with cats, improving their health, and saying goodbye when their nine lives have run their course. You’ll also enjoy crafts and divination techniques involving cats as well as paw-some advice from Deborah Blake’s extraordinary familiar, Magic the Cat.
Deborah Blake is the award-winning author of The Goddess is in the Details, Everyday Witchcraft, and numerous other books from Llewellyn, along with her Everyday Witch tarot deck. She has published articles in Llewellyn annuals, and her ongoing column, “Everyday Witchcraft,” is featured in Witches & Pagans. When not writing, Deborah runs the Artisans’ Guild, a cooperative shop she founded with a friend in 1999, and also works as a jewelry maker, tarot reader, and energy healer. She lives in a 130-year-old farmhouse in rural upstate New York with various cats who supervise all her activities, magickal and mundane. She can be found online at Facebook, Twitter, and www.deborahblakeauthor.com.
Remember when I asked you all to brainstorm names for Demon Island businesses? You were brilliant. I need more, a real estate firm, probably the only one on the island, and a bowling alley. And of course, anything else you can think of.
I was e-mailing with Krissie this morning (she’s in Vermont, I’m in NJ, we’re both buried in snow as we write books), and I thought about what life would be like without her. She’s always there for me–you would not believe all the stuff she did for me while I was in the hospital, including driving down from Vermont on about an hour’s notice)–and she’s always funny and wise and profane and sharp and she always tells me the truth, but she also tells me I’m amazing and I can do anything. All of which is to say, Krissie is crucial to my happiness, which means that friends are necessary for achieving a state of joy.
Well, friends and dogs.
You gotta have friends (there’s an earworm for you) because happiness shared is like happiness squared and cubed and wrapped around you like a warm blanket in winter (in summer it’s a cool breeze). Also, Krissie is a goddess.
Today is Homemade Bread Day. I feel certain “homemade” also includes freezer dough. Or those Panera frozen sourdough rounds. Or bakery bread you heat in your oven. Anything that smells like warm yeast as it bakes, really.
Oh, oh, you know what else is good? Banana bread. Or nut bread. Or banana nut bread. Cinnamon raisin bread. Toasted. Croissants. Cresent rolls. Crescent rolls with cheese. Crescent rolls with butter . . .
So I did one of the boring things I have to do when I get close to the end of a finished first draft: the outline. This outline is not one I follow, it’s the one that follows me. It lists all the scenes I’ve already written so I can see the plot lurches, the subplots I’ve dropped, the characters who have disappeared, the scenes I need to write yet. It’s the well-let’s-see-what-we’ve-got-here part of the process, done in Word in a table with three columns: Date and Time, Nita’s scenes, Nick’s scenes. Nick and Nita’s names are done in boldface, and then the characters I need to keep track of (Button, Max, Belia, etc.) are highlighted in different colors. It’s a nightmare, and it’s boring as all Hell (which is not that boring, I’m hoping), but it does help me see the holes in the book.
This book is the swiss cheese of narrative excessiveness.
So we’re halfway through November, (five days before the new Aaronovitch is supposed to land), and there’s a threat of snow outside, so I’m going to build a fire and lose myself in a good book, in this case, the one I’m writing. It’s still going all over the place, but I like it. That’s HUGE.
Monday I spent the day trying to get a timeline for Earth/Hell which means I did math. I happen to think math is beautiful unless I’m doing something like this with tables, trying to make two different timelines match. I think I’ve got it now, but creative it was not. Last night, I tried to figure out what kind of porn Ranger Rich would have under his bed. I decided to leave that up to the imagination of the reader since if there’s one thing I do not want to research, it’s porn. Today, I’m working on the scene where Marvella tries to burn Nita at the stake. I’m thinking that one might be a bridge too far for readers,, but what the hell, it popped up as part of the process, so I’ll give it a shot. Thank god I know how this book ends (I’ve written that scene already). And now back to trying to find all the scenes I’ve lost because I’m sloppy with the doc-naming . . .
Today is Sesame Street Day, a celebration of the kid’s show that debuted on November 10 in 1969. If you’re not singing, “Can you tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame Street” right now, you’re Oscar the Grouch. My fave? The Count, the guy I think of whenever I have to count something.