The accompanying music isn’t the best, so maybe try muting it and playing something better. I went with “California Uber Alles”, which is conveniently included below in its own Youtube video.
I’ve been meaning to read Frank Herbert’s DUNE almost my entire life; I used to be fascinated by the pulp paperback covers in our library when I was a kid. For some reason the time never seemed right — I’m weird about books that way — and then two weeks ago I pounced on it. I’ve had people tell me it’s a dense read, and this is somewhat true. There’s total world invention, many characters, a massive plot, a new vocabulary, and plenty of scientific-political-mystical complexity. And yet it’s extremely easy to read, and captivating start to finish. Halfway through, I knew I was hooked on the whole series, and I went out and bought Herbert’s five sequels. Onto #2.
Fun fact: DUNE was originally rejected by twenty publishers, and was finally released by Chilton Books, which was known for publishing auto repair manuals.
We’ll be greeting customers, helping holiday shoppers find good books, signing our own novels, and just pitching in. Please come see us and support a local bookstore this holiday season. I might remind you that you cannot meet dashing, early-middle-aged authors at an online megastore.
Writing: I’ve figured out the high-level plot and done most of the essential research, so now I’m taking it chapter by chapter, conjuring all the major and minor beats, structures, and details. Working on chapter 6 today.
Personal: My middle-age aches — sore knee, shoulder blade prone to muscle seizure — in fact may have been caused by a lumpy fifteen-year-old mattress and a broken box spring. If scorpions had nested in the sheets, I would not have slept worse. Last week we got a Sleep Number bed, because it was affordable (and gloriously reviewed by Consumer Reports), and it’s been a very good three nights of sleep so far. No aches.
I won’t know for a few weeks if the old bed was truly causing the pain — though it’s suspicious that my aches were all on my left side — but I’m hopeful. I’ve wanted to exercise my legs to strengthen my weak knee, but couldn’t exercise my legs because of my bad knee. In sum, this bed could be a fountain of youth.
I’m still experimenting with the firmness setting. I’m a side-sleeper, so I’m supposed to go softer for proper support. My ideal number seems to be in the 55-65 range. It makes me feel wimpy, to be honest. I imagined myself to be a 100% firmness type of guy, as if I’d really prefer to sleep on corrugated iron.
Writing: I’m going to compress two years in my characters’ lives into one year to make the story more urgent.
Nature: Overcast, warm, yellow-leaved.
Personal: Attending last night’s WWE event with my son was a blast. Two cage matches, good times. Also my cold is getting better.