Thursday, December 15, 2005

Lessons Learned

I seemed to have turned the corner on the cold. I can feel myself getting better, though I actually seem to sound worse. I'm hoping to be able to get back to work for real today. Yesterday I was too woozy to think straight, but last night I had a couple of book insights as I was falling asleep, so I may be ready to go. I can pick up my prints from my New York trip photos today, and I'm sure that will inspire me.

Speaking of New York, I had a number of not-necessarily work-related insights occur to me while I was there:

1. It's very difficult for me to have a conversation in a bookstore or any other room filled with books (like my editor's office). I try to focus on the person I'm talking to, but my eyes keep straying to look at the titles, and I have to fight the urge to stop in mid-sentence and pick up a book to look at it. It's even worse when I've got Book Brain and mix in the occasional moments of spacing out because something that was said or something I saw or even something I thought about sparked an idea.

2. I think I'm finally mastering the New York subway system. I don't have to consult the route map nearly as often, and I've learned how to get my suitcase through the turnstiles while barely breaking stride. My real accomplishment on this trip was knowing the station layouts well enough that I knew which car I should get on in order to be closest to the exit I needed at the destination station. I still have a little problem with the express vs. local issue. My "home" station is Union Square, and everything stops there, so I have to remember if an express will stop at the station where I need to get off. I haven't found that an express makes that much of a time difference within Manhattan. It does make a difference if the first train to come along is an express and I need to know whether I should board it or wait for the next local.

3. Charming Italian waiters make a meal more enjoyable. They don't even have to be young and cute. In fact, I think I enjoy it more from charming older men when I can be sure they're just being charming instead of hoping to pick me up.

4. I missed my chance to be on a reality TV show (darn). I was going to drop in on my favorite coffee shop, but they had a sign outside the door saying that they were filming for an MTV Lisa Loeb reality show, and entering the coffee shop meant you were agreeing to be filmed. I didn't care one way or another about being filmed, but it looked crowded and hectic in there, and one peek through the windows was enough to confirm the location detail I needed, so I skipped going inside. Only later did I realize that I might have been able to play up the Dallas connection (Lisa Loeb went to high school in Dallas) and maybe get some book publicity, but I was really tired and hungry and didn't want to deal with it at the time.

I was sure I had more than that, but I guess my brain is still fuzzy.

If anyone's wondered where the regular Thursday Out of the Blogosphere posts went, we're re-tooling that project and will re-launch in a different way next year. In the meantime, if you're looking for new paranormal releases, the info is still being posted regularly to the Out of the Blogosphere group blog.

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