Wednesday, December 28, 2016

A Journey to Barnes & Noble

In my family we are all readers. As we've grown older we've done away with the searching for just the right little doodad for Christmas since our homes are literally stuffed with stuff we've given one another. Now we gift one another Barnes & Noble gift cards at Christmas. Everyone is deliriously happy traveling over the mountain to Holyoke to visit the bookstore. My brother-in-law heads for the CDs at the back. My sister peruses the movies and British TV series boxed sets. My brother reads mysteries. My husband applies his GCs to his account to purchase books for his nook. My daughter heads to fantasy/mystery/sci-fi. I hunt for books with certain subject matter- circuses, carnivals, magic, pirates, ghosts- not necessarily modern. I also like books set in Victorian times, but only certain books. I occasionally indulge in a movie or a British TV series. Only rarely do I buy music.

Anyway- I got home from work this evening and Kelly asked me if I wanted to go to the bookstore with her. That's like getting off a plane and asking the first hungry squirrel if it wants your little bag of peanuts. Duh! We ate dinner and hit the road in her Honda HRV since I've been having trouble with night vision due to medication I'm on for RA.

The parking lot was practically a ghost town. We're due for a snowstorm tomorrow so everyone is jamming the grocery stores because one can never have enough milk and bread to survive that eight hours before the plows come along to clear the roads. I've heard horror stories about how people starved to death because they didn't have bread and milk for breakfast and woke to find themselves snowed in for a couple hours! Good God- they almost had to eat the goldfish they were so hungry! The other place that was hopping was the gas station near the highway. I guess you need to be able to syphon gas from your vehicle to ignite the hardwood floor you tear up to keep your house warm during a nor'easter because all that money you pay for oil, natural gas, electricity, propane, cord wood, pellets, etc. has been for naught. It has always been a curious phenomenon to me this lemming like rush to the grocery store and gas station in New England whenever there is a hint of storm on the horizon. When we lost power for eight days in 2011 my husband and I didn't roast the cats over a fire in the garage in order to survive. we ate cold cereal, moved all the food out of the fridge and freezer, burying it in the two to three feet of snow to keep cold, made peanut butter sandwiches...and waited for the power lines to be repaired, the trees to be cleared off the roads and stores to reopen, life to continue on.

Well- there weren't many people buying books (which theoretically can be burned if need be since book burning is a long standing tradition in some cultures). I found a new novel by Carol Birch titled Orphans of the Carnival that is right up my alley, so grabbed that. Nothing else on the second floor caught my eye, so I took the escalator back down to the main level and poked around in bargain books, finding a tall heavy book about Magic! Yahoo! Another good find! Circling around and poking further I came across a book called Where Do You Get Your Ideas? A Writer's Guide to Transforming Notions into Narratives by Fred White. I have no idea where the ideas for the 22 books I've written and published so far have come from. I have more novels and stories lounging on the dining room table basking under the glow of the ceiling fan light at the moment enjoying their idle time before they to have to go forth and entertain readers. I thought it might be interesting to find out where ideas come from since I have no clue. The final book that captured my attention was Who's (Oops) Whose Grammar Book Is This Anyway- All the Grammar you Need to Succeed in Life by C. Edward Good. Maybe I need to read this book in order to be a tad more successful in life. I'm going to hold Mr. Good to this promise that it's actually ALL the grammar I'll need to succeed. I do take things quite literally and do not like to be disappointed by false promises.

Kelly actually found the one book she was looking for right off the bat. I was looking at Orphans of the Carnival, had just lifted it down from the shelf under the fiction new releases header when she came over to show the book to me. I looked at her and asked, "Well, does that mean we're leaving now, or can I look around a little more?" She just rolled her eyes and walked away- I am my daughter's mother after all!

She found two additional books.

On the way home we passed a house on Homestead Avenue that had a plastic Mary, Joseph and Jesus in the manger lit up alongside their driveway. My brother had given me a plastic light up camel lawn ornament he found in someone's FREE box alongside the road. (I collect camels). I said, "I wonder what would happen if I put my camel there with Mary and Joseph. The King just ran down to the corner store to grab a coffee or something, he'll be right back." She just shook her head, but when we got to the corner on the left side is Twin Stop mini market, and on the right is KING mini market. Then she said, "Oh, look. He must be the King who brought the gold and he invested it in a mini mart. The Frankincense and Myrrh Kings are still trying to pawn their stuff because it doesn't have any real market value these days."  When you put two writer's together you get two creative people feeding off one another- and it can get pretty crazy very quickly!

No wonder my husband zones out when he drives when she and I are in the car with him- although on rare occasions he'll jump in with his two cents!

National Lampoon's Family Vacation has nothin' on us!

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