June 16, 2010

Squirrel Love (aka Me + Manfriend)

You know that thing that encapsulates your relationship so perfectly that you feel like it was made about you?

This would be that.

OK, not exactly (close). But it makes me really happy. And want my own tail to wrap Manfriend up in. (And my own kangaroo pouch, too, while we're at it. But that's a subject for another post.)

Characters That Bite

This lovely post by my best friend Eve got me all kinds of excited about TrueBlood. Not that it's out in Australia or anything: no, we're the last kid picked for the HBO series team. I love what Alan Ball has done with the Sookie Stackhouse series; the show, and the novels that inspired them, were the fantastical fluff that got me through my last semester of grad school. I just finished book #10 in the series and was struck, once again, by the kind of loyalty certain characters can inspire. It fascinates me that you can actually say to someone "Team Bill or Eric?" and have them nod sagely and give you an actual answer.

Say what you will about Charlaine Harris or Stephanie Meyer, you can't deny that they've created characters that almost literally jump from the page and into the waiting arms of their many many fans.

So what it is about these characters (OK, besides the blatantly obvious) that inspires so much fervor? What is it about any fictional character that makes them feel tangible, even lovable? What makes us cry for them, laugh with them, want to throw food at them (or eat it off of them)? For me, it's always about their voice. I'm nothing like Harris's Sookie - in fact, she drives me crazy half of the time - but I love experiencing the world through her particular voice. I can feel her attitude in every word she says, so much so that it makes her feel familiar. I'd love to create characters like that, ones that make you want to reach out and touch them.

Until then, I'll borrow this one.

June 6, 2010

Going To Rainbow

I had the chance to go to Rainbow Beach last weekend, a beautiful, quiet beach lined by huge sand blows. I stayed there with a girlfriend, Misty, which was a welcome infusion of estrogen. It's been so long since I enjoyed a girls weekend. We ate and drank (well, she's pregnant - I drank) and talked, talked, talked. It gave me a chance to think about what I want to accomplish in the remainder of the year. So I'm saying it here (thus making it more likely that I'll actually do it): I'm going to finish editing Spellbound by my birthday and novel #2 by Christmas. Take that, full-time employment.

Now, on to some pictures. I've been having a lot of fun playing with my new camera. Misty is an awesome photographer, so I got to pick her brain and learn about depth of field and manual shooting.

Attempting to play with depth of field. (I call it my 'go balls deep' picture.)

Storm clouds over the sand blow. We climbed one of these and the view was spectacular.

One of the most beautiful pregnant women ever.