Why coffee builds character

I am not a coffee drinker.

Yes, I’m aware it’s practically sacrilege to say so in a culture that prides itself on having a $20-a-day Starbucks habit. I never acquired the taste for it.

But the smell of it can hurtle me through time and space faster than the Doctor’s Tardis, dropping me into a seat at Grandma’s kitchen table. I picture the way she folded her paper towel — what served as a plate at breakfast, when she liked to have a little toasted sandwich to dunk in her coffee. I see her hands, knuckles swollen with arthritis, wrapped around the mug. My feet dangle and swing, when I don’t tuck them up on the chair braces, because in Grandma’s kitchen I’m forever ten years old, and I never did have that growth spurt.

And when I think about writing, I think about coffee — because coffee builds character. All of my characters have coffee moments stirring their memories and emotions. Their moments aren’t coffee in Grandma’s kitchen, of course, but it’s when they share them with me that I know I’m in the right place. The right space. The writing space.



Twitter. ‘Cause all the kids are doing it.

If you look around, you’ll see I’ve added a Twitter button. I’ll be tweeting about whatever comes to mind — mostly the day’s writing, I suspect, but don’t hold me to that — as soon as I come up with the perfectly profound, witty statement with which to start. So that’ll be happening after six rounds of edits and plenty of hair-pulling (and not the good kind, sigh).


Giving thanks

Aside from being able to enjoy Thanksgiving with my extended family, what I’m most thankful for this year is 1) writing a novel from start to finish and 2) successfully placing said novel with a publisher. Alice and her boys have been fortunate enough to find a home on the first try — a delightful surprise, and definitely one worth giving thanks for. I hope everyone is having an equally wonderful Thanksgiving!