Friday, October 12, 2018
Inherit the Wool
Inherit the Wool is out into the world. I celebrated with an Impossible burger and a cappuccino at the Medici in Chicago. The Impossible burger is a new veggie burger, actually vegan. I’ve been a vegetarian for over 35 years which means I haven’t had anything but veggie burgers for all that time. Veggie burgers are shaped like hamburgers and but that’s mostly where the similarities end.
Impossible burgers are different. They actually seem like meat – the taste, the smell, the texture. I’m pretty easy to please, but when my meat eating family heard about them, they tried them in L.A. and were won over.
Chicago weather lived up to its erratic reputation. It was in the sixties when I got here, went up to the eighties for a couple of days and today was blustery and cold. Tonight the heat in the building went on. I have been watching the leaves on the tree outside my window go from green to mostly yellow in the few days I’ve been here. The sidewalks are littered with leaves and last night the strong wind sent them fluttering down.
I have been paying a lot of attention to the details of everything here as the new thing I’m working on takes place in Chicago in October. Actually my main character Veronica Blackstone lives in my place. So, I have been mentally redecorating it for her.
I went downtown today to meet my dear friend Penny. We have known each other almost all our lives and it’s fun to share memories. I had another reason to go downtown. Penny lives in the area where the murder takes place in the new thing I’m working on, so I was checking out balconies on high rises since the victim meets her end by going off of one. I was amazed at how many of the tall buildings had balconies. Some were on very high floors and frankly seemed a little creepy to me.
I also wanted to walk down Wabash Avenue. The elevated train runs down the middle of the street, well, actually over the middle of the street. I have seen it a million times, but never really looked at it. Because I was going to describe the tracks over head with the rumbling trains, I wanted to really look at it. It’s always hard to know exactly how to describe things. Too detailed and it gets kind of boring, but too vague and nobody will be able to picture it. As I was looking at a train going down the tracks, I thought what a weird set up it was and I noticed that some of the supports holding the tracks up looked like giant bug legs.
I was looking for a location for a dance gym that is in the story. Wabash Avenue and really all of downtown Chicago has been going through a lot of changes. The kinds of stores have changed. The grand looking building that used to house my dentist is now part of the University I went to. Retails stores have disappeared along with a lot of the restaurants. I imagined that the dance gym would be in something that was formerly retail space. Wouldn’t you know it, I passed exactly what I was looking for. It’s always easier to describe something you’ve actually seen.
It is also fun to look at places and think of how I would describe them. It is like seeing everything in a fresh way.
It keeps life interesting.