End of the Year Thoughts

Hi everyone!

Here’s a belated Chrismukkah present for you all:

Three Confused Pugs @ Yahoo! Video
OMG TOO HILARIOUS.  I came across that at Cute Overload, which is maybe the best website on the entire Internet, if I haven’t mentioned it before.  :-)  (And if you’ve never been there, that’s your real Chrismukkah present!)

How were your holidays?  I hope they were splendiferous and fantabulous!  We were away from home last year, so this was our first official holiday in our shiny house, which means:

IMG_5628Our first menorah!


Our first Christmas tree!

So shiny and exciting!  Our menorah was a gift from our lovely friend Deborah, and I think it’s super-beautiful:

And at the top of our tree we put an ornament that was made for us by my wonderful godmother Adrienne:
So we can think of people we love while we’re making the house all warm and sparkly and holiday-happy.  Yay!  

Plus I got some excellent presents this year, including warm socks from Mom (this is a perfect gift for writers who work from home in cold climates like Boston, not to mention a lot cheaper than letting said writers turn up the heat like they’re always whining about, at least if they’re me) 🙂 and the thoroughly addictive Top Chef game from Adam. 

I cannot stop playing this game!  It’s ridiculously fun!  I had no idea how hilarious and entertaining it would be, although I love the show.  I think I’m even learning something about cooking, although I’ve made some absolutely horrifying things (I won a challenge the other day by making a mussels, orange, and carrot pizza with celery sauce.  GROOOOOOOSS!  But they wanted it to be orange, and it was certainly that!).  🙂

While lying around on the couch having quiet holiday time, we also managed to watch an absolutely brilliant movie that I cannot possibly recommend to you, because it is SUPER violent.  But I LOVED it.  


It’s called Battle Royale, and it’s Japanese, and it’s got a very similar plot to The Hunger Games, where teenagers are trapped in a game where they have to kill each other until there’s only one left.  I know, terrible, dreadful, shocking, what are we teaching the youth today, etc. etc., but FASCINATING.  Especially because in Battle Royale they’re all in the same ninth-grade class, so there are all these high school issues and crushes and friendships wound up in all the killing.  It’s one of those strange, original, unexpected movies that I tend to love, but don’t rush out and see it unless you can handle oodles of violence (and your parents say it’s OK!).  


That, by the way, is another example of how two writers can take the same basic premise and create two totally different, yet equally awesome stories.  I found yet another Noah’s Ark novel the other day, although I haven’t started it yet — and the book I just finished reading (The Children’s Hospital by Chris Adrian) is sort of a Noah’s Ark story, too, although a very surreal and unusual one.  What’s with the popularity of Noah’s Ark?  I always thought it would just be kind of damp and smelly and boring to be stuck on a boat with a whole lot of animals for forty days.  But luckily other authors thought differently, which is why there are so many good Noah’s Ark books.

And since there’s no new TV happening, we’ve been watching DVD’s, so we’re almost done with the last season of The Wire.  Which is breaking my heart because I want to stay with these characters always and I want them all to be OK and they totally won’t be!  SIGH.

So, yes, possibly I’ve been spending too much time holiday-ing and not enough time writing, but that’s what shiny new years are for, right?  Getting all inspired and organized and accomplishing things!

Have you figured out your resolutions yet?  I think I did OK on last year’s — I definitely went to India (yay!) and voted (YAY!) and I tried to write a sentence a day and I read lots of edifying books to get smarter, but I probably still need to add more sparkliness to my website (it’ll happen!  with Pet Trouble!  I swear!). 

But my ideas for this year’s resolutions are nebulous and all over the place.  Like, I want to go to China, but maybe not this year — after India I’m thinking we should do a smaller trip first, like Ireland or Guatemala.  And I want to visit more schools, but if I make that an official resolution then I’ll feel pressured, plus my mom might take me seriously and Do Something About It, which is v. dangerous.  😉

And I want to get another puppy, but Adam and Sunshine aren’t exactly 100% on board for this plan yet.  (IMAGINE not being excited about a puppy!  One of them is all: "no, I’M the puppy!  love ME the most!  I refuse to compete with anything as cute as me!" and the other one is like: "is this going to interfere with all the lying-on-the-couch-with-our-laptops that we normally do?") (I’ll let you guess which is which.)

So maybe I’ll just resolve to write as many books as possible this year.  I have all these ideas banging around in my head, and (heads up! writer-y advice coming at you!) one thing I’ve learned is that you should write something while you’re excited about it, because if you wait too long it’ll slowly trickle out of your head.  And then when you finally sit down to write, you’ll be like, why did I care about this story?  So even if it’s not perfect yet, write it down!

Starting with resolutions!  Or maybe instead of resolutions, make a wish list…what would you love to do this year?  What do you hope for?  Me, I hope you’re hoping for lots of new books about dogs, because Pet Trouble is coming soon!  Yay!  🙂

Happy Chrismukkah and Happy New Year, everyone!

Quote of the Day:
Reese: "Why would the universe make fun of us?"
Crews: "Maybe it’s insecure."