#ROW80 Round 4 2012: Trick or Treat!

I’ve never really been much of a Hallowe’en guy. Maybe the best time I had on the day was the year that I bought an awful-looking rubber mask and, realizing I couldn’t see without my glasses, put them on over the mask. Chicago being where it is, it could be eighty degrees on October 31 or there could be a foot of snow on the ground. I’ve seen both.

Today also marks the 25th anniversary of our departure from Chicago to come live in Atlanta. Everything was loaded on the truck by noon, we loaded the five cats we had at the time into the car, kissed my in-laws goodbye, and departed, determined to spend that night in our new home. We made it to Chattanooga at about 12:30 AM on November 1 and stopped at a Waffle House for a coffee and bathroom break. We walked in and realized that we were the only people not in costume. Twenty-five years later, we have no desire to move back, especially when we hear on WGN that the temperature is going to be some large negative number in the dead of winter. Trust me, we do not miss that one bit.

Anyway, here’s the update:

Spend an hour writing every day: I did this two days out of seven, and have 2,381 words of the next story written. Still have to get better there, but I have progress.

Visit other bloggers and give them encouragement: Have definitely been doing this. Sometimes in preference to writing.

Spend half an hour three times a week on Twitter: Again, I’ve been doing this, though I haven’t been tweeting a lot. I’ve noticed that my feed consists largely of political tweets and tweets about Superstorm Sandy (and if any of you are affected, you’re in my thoughts), as well as tweets about the World Series. Everything is bound to calm down by, what, end of the year? Following hash tags seems to be my best bet.

Learn to read like a writer: Not so much. I did read How to Write a Dick: A Guide for Writing Fictional Sleuths from a Couple of Real-Life Sleuths by Shaun Kaufman and Colleen Collins, which was well worth it, because I’ve had this character for years who’s done just about everything and decided to make her a PI. If you are also so inclined, get the book; Kaufman and Collins present a good deal of information about what being a private investigator is really all about. I finished that this afternoon and returned to Crossed, which has been more confusing than Matched, its predecessor, as it’s being told from several characters’ points of view. Mary got Karin Slaughter’s most recent book, Criminal, from the library, and something tells me that I can learn a lot from reading her. I’m familiar with the characters in her books, I’m familiar with many of the settings (she’s from the Atlanta area as well, and her books are set in Georgia), and, most importantly, I like her books.

That’s my update for this week. Again, if you’re in Sandy’s path, stay safe.

10 thoughts on “#ROW80 Round 4 2012: Trick or Treat!

  1. I read MATCHED, but I haven’t picked up the sequel. I liked the first book, but not so much that I just couldn’t wait to read the next one. Maybe someday.

    I’m a baseball fan myself, but I only watched the last game of the World Series. It was an exciting one, though!

    Good job with the word count; best wishes getting more there. It’s hard to just nail down that writing time. Have a great week, John!

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    1. I made my first extended trip to Atlanta in December 1984. At the time, Mary and a few friends of ours were saying, “gee, you’re lucky, it’s going to be cold up here!” When I got to Atlanta, it was colder than it was in Chicago. The payoff is the extreme heat and humidity during the summer, not to mention all of the convective activity (i.e. thunderstorms and tornadoes) from March to October.

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      1. I’ve decided that every area has weather that is challenging. we have snow and winter but no tornadoes or hurricanes and flooding is very unlikely on the edge of the mountains.

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  2. Maybe it is because I’m still “young,” but I can’t live without a normal winter. Lived in Puerto Rico and Miami, FL for a winter (didn’t see snow or feel cold). HATED IT! It messed up my sense of timing. And Halloween is my favorite holiday. If I would have driven up and seen that, I would have gotten a 2nd wind and been all, “Party!” 😉

    I wish you luck getting in more writing. And I think your choice for the book about sleuths is reading like a writer, because what non-writer would read that? (I’m stretching it, I know.) So, to me you have aced 3 out of 4 goals and that’s great. Keep up the good work.

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    1. I think a lot depends on your idea of a “normal” winter. In Chicago, it could be warm and rainy one day and the next there’d be a foot of snow on the ground and the temperature would be so low that wind chill no longer matters. I was in Puerto Rico one year around Columbus Day, and the guy I was working with said that it was freezing. To me, 80 degrees is great.

      Thanks for the encouragement!

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    1. Thanks! I remember when I first moved here that it’d get cold, and people would say, “it’s so cold!” and I’d think, this is nothing. Now I’m the same way. I like living where, when it snows, you just stay in the house and wait until it melts.

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