As I write this, we in Central Florida are experiencing one of the first big thunderstorms of the season. I’m sitting on the porch so I don’t miss any of it.
There was a summer I worked with my father-in-law at his auto body shop where it rained every single afternoon, right around 3pm, like clockwork. And when I say rain, I mean tropical downpour.
I think there are two things people aren’t prepared for when they come down here for a summer vacation at Disney World. One is the extreme heat accompanied by even more extreme humidity. The other is the rain.
Dark clouds will roll in, still off in the distance a little ways. And you’ll see the locals and the tourists who know start packing up their stuff. They’ll grab their kids and make a beeline either for the parking lot or for a restaurant before all the good seats are taken.
Then you hear the thunder. And then the bottom will drop. And chaos will ensue as all the other vacationers will scream and run for cover and buy overpriced ponchos and umbrellas and crowd in at the edges of the restaurants if there’s still room.
As long as you can be in the smart group, and as long as no one gets hurt, it’s hilarious. That’s the one reason I might want to work at Disney for a summer.
• I’m back to work on the Greysuits sequel!
The rough draft for the memoir I’ve been writing is basically wrapped up for the moment, so it’s all fiction all the time now.
Which is hard, actually.
My biggest problem with the non-fiction work was keeping myself interested in my own story. It’s so boring when I know it so well.
But with fiction, my biggest problem is deciding what happens next. I’m the kind of author who makes it up as I go. Not the kind that plans it all out in advance. I kind of wish I was that kind.
Maybe one day.
Either way, progress is happening and I can’t wait for people to read it.
• I’m reading We Are Legion (We Are Bob).
Actually I’m listening to it. Have you read it?
A few friends keep bothering me about reading it so I finally am. It’s good. I’m about halfway through so nobody spoil it for me, please.
It sort of reminds me of The Martian, which I really liked. It’s very engineery like that. Like lots of lists and what-ifs and detailed engineering problems and solutions. And definitely a sense of humor, which is a big part of the main characters’ interaction with their worlds in both stories.
A big difference, to me as a writer anyways, is the lack of a central driving question. With The Martian, the reader is constantly wondering, will he make it? Will he survive all this?
With We Are Legion, you get the same problems-and-solutions and ticking-off-list-items style of storytelling, but the central driving question, if there is one, is more about discovery.
What will Bob find out there? What conclusions will he reach about space and the future and humanity?
We’ll see. Maybe I’ll change my mind by the next chapter.
• I have a podcast.
It doesn’t have anything to do with Greysuits, or science fiction, or any kind of fiction. It’s about the pursuit of a more creative, adventurous, generous life.
The most recent episode is literally me reading a story I wrote
back in 2011 about an Appalachian Trail hike some friends and I did that only lasted a few days. It’s called Miles And Miles Of Appalachian Trials. I think it’s funny, but your mileage may vary.
I don’t know what summer looks like for you in your neck of the world. In fact, it may not be summer at all. You in the Southern Hemisphere are gearing up for winter, and if you live near the equator, summer doesn’t mean anything at all, does it? I guess it must mean something. Anyway, have a great month of June no matter what that looks like for you.