(By the way, I’ve been taking tons of pictures in NYC. Feel free to explore my Flickr account to view them!)
First of all, congratulations to Celine Chapus of PurpleTopHat.com, who has made it into Comic Con San Diego‘s Artists’ Alley! This is a HUGE deal – entrance is by jury only, and tickets just for membership are sold out a year in advance. Woohoo!
Second of all, I am indeed home, as I said, and incredibly grateful to be. My husband and Celine came to fetch me, showing up as a complete surprise on Thursday night. I could not possibly be more grateful.
Speaking of Duane, he has a terrific possibility of a job in Keene, NH. The only downside? It would require moving. On the other hand, Keene is lovely, and we’d still be in NH, which is the goal. We shall see what happens!
So just for now, goodbye, Manhattan. Grandma is all right; my parents are there with her now, and that’s good. I don’t know if I need to take a turn with her again soon, though that might happen. It never rains, but it pours.
As for writing, book two is coming along well. Anybody want a completely random snippet?
The tunnel swung upward at its end. Alex gripped the edge, took a deep breath, and pulled himself up to peek.
It was the throne room. Stained glass ringed the white dome overhead, casting light onto the checkered marble floor. Directly below him, the throne loomed like a half-remembered nightmare, onyx-black and shiny. Wide, paper-thin bands of gold jutted from its base like petals, most of which were jammed into the walls and floors as if clinging for dear life. A few had come free, however, and undulated teasingly at the guests.
One of them flipped briefly up at Alex’s hiding spot; Mab did not miss much.
Grateful she hadn’t revealed him, Alex took the hint and stayed low.
In the middle of the room, out of the throne’s reach, two long tables cut the space into thirds. Napkins folded like birds hovered above each plate, their cloth wings flapping over numerous wine glasses and varied silverware. Beings sat at those tables. Some looked vaguely human – though they were usually too perfect, too symmetrical to pull it off – but most did not even try to resemble humanity. Too many limbs, too many faces, numerous eyes (or too few), fur, scales both big and small –
“Thank you, thank you,” said Robin, Owen’s sixth seneschal in the last two months, flitting among them like a hummingbird in a well-equipped garden. He wore Unseelie red today, and in a mockery of anti-human sentiment, it was precisely the uniform of a Medieval page. Even his hair hung in a smooth, light-brown bob around his chin. Never losing his smile, he danced from a cat wearing boots to an enormous horned beast in kimono and sash, bowing appropriately for each culture and offer tiny magic treats pulled from thin air.
Alex eyed him warily. The first seneschal had refused to go anywhere near the throne, which didn’t work for obvious reasons. The second had difficulty with languages, which made communication with other world leaders impossible. The third was what Steven called a ‘rebound,’ and couldn’t seem to do anything right. The fourth –
“Ha ha ha!” cackled a brown creature with numerous folds of fat and one staring eye. “Fun treat! Fun!” He made a grab for Robin’s head.
Robin deftly avoided him. “Treats are good for everyone!” he replied, and offered a small cake in his stead. The ogre-thing accepted it, which was probably best for everyone.