Writing My Way Through a Short Summer

So I recently returned from a trip to London, Paris, and Madrid. I took a group of forty high school students, parents, and fellow teachers. Great fun was had by all, and much exhaustion was produced. If you'd like to read about the trip, I blogged the whole thing here at:

Central High Europe Trip

Now, after some days of decompressing, I am finally getting started with a real summer break. My plan was to put in flooring, dry-wall, and a drop ceiling in an unfinished room in our new house, but according to the guy at H&R Block it takes two to three months to get the eight grand stimulus-for-buying-a-new-house-money from the gov'ment. Without that job, I thought I'd work on school stuff, paint myself a copy of Picasso's Don Quixote for my classroom, maybe paint the walls in the living room (if Paige and I can agree on colors), and generally sit on my butt until early August, when we head out to Cincinnati to see my family. It's my mom's sixtieth birthday (man, that sounds weird. Mom can't be sixty!) and she wants to go to Dollywood. As much as I'm looking forward to the time with the family, those of you who know me can probably imagine just how well I'll fit in at the Country and Western version of Disneyland. Imagine a half-naked, foam-cheese-hat-wearing, body-paint-covered Green Bay Packers fan screaming his head off at Wimbledon, or a golf tournament at Pebble Beach, or a televised chess match. That will be me. I haven't worn an earring in five years, but I'm thinking of finding my old skull and crossbones earring and putting it back in just to heighten the effect.

Anyway, that leaves a month in the middle for my summer. So I started the painting of Don Quixote, then realized that, as much as I love the painting and the story, I really should read the book. So I started it (spoiler: it's really good) and I got an idea for another novel. Now, I know I haven't finished the trilogy (quadrilogy?) I'm two books deep in right now, but since no one is nibbling at those, and this will probably be more marketable (what the hell do I know about marketability?) I've started writing this new one, and I'm going to see how much I can crank out over the next month. It's fun because I'm writing in the voice of a woman looking back on her high school years and a) I'm not a woman, and b) she's funny, so it's really challenging to get her voice just right. I considered teasing out the first few chapters here, but I know I'll want to do lots of editing before I take that leap, and, at the very least, I should let Paige read it before I completely humiliate myself. Still, I think the project has promise. Wish me luck!

Does one wish writer's luck? Actors are encouraged to break their legs (it's a dangerous profession). Should you wish me carpal tunnel syndrome?