December 14th, 2009

Starting from scratch

Okay, I'm still trying to get traction on not one, but two, new books. Starting is hard!

This past year, I taught a mystery writing class at my local bookstore. And I decided to go back and see what I told my students. Like "Set a goal for your character and keep raising the stakes." That seems doable.

I'm also going to go through all the fodder I've collected over the past 20 years - a whole filing cabinet drawer of articles. Something in there is bound to spark an idea.

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I still think this is funny

I'm going through my file cabinet full of fodder. One article I've kept since 1994 about how people with self-diagnosed caffeine addiction reacted when their coffee, cola or tea was taken away and replaced with a pill. Half got exactly the amount of caffeine they normally consumed. The others got a dummy pill.

"Of those getting the dummy pill, most were functionally impaired for a day and a half. One person who had a manufacturing job made costly errors. Another could not bring herself to go to work. Another spent the afternoon in a dark office with her head on her desk. One woman called off her child's birthday party. Most went to bed early."

For some reason, the thought of that woman with her head on the desk still makes me laugh. I totally understand.

You can read the whole thing here.

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