Happy Yule, Jane Quiet, Elena & Providence

The solstice is upon us and it pays to remember that the longest night also means it’s time for the return of the light. Here’s my perennial offering on Anglo-Saxon Yule that ended up online without my putting it there. At least they credited me as author.

I’ve got another piece up at Polite Company Magazine: a humorous account of a medieval saint.

Waking up at Elena’s can be an interesting experience. I am glad not to have been in the room with the evil clown lately. Instead I get the knitted giraffe…

And of course, pin-up boy, Gunnar Hansen…

As well as the Spider-man bedding and if lucky, a puppy. Shaq certainly enjoyed the Spider-man comforter (or perhaps just the belly rubs). The three pups are a lot of fun and of course, as Elena always says, “I’m a mom!” so visitors are very well taken care of. It’s nice. Thanks so much for all the food and fun!

Yesterday, once we could tear ourselves away from the pups, we headed off to Providence and the John Hay Library. We needed some visual references for Jane Quiet and to fill in some of her back story. I’m excited that Elena is ready to work on it again — the story we have in mind is a knock-out! Here’s Hay himself with a jaunty holiday bow. Seems that students rub him on the nose for good luck on exams, which makes it shiny. There was a terrific exhibit on Hispaniola in the gallery. We chatted with a librarian who was very helpful and gave me the card for the librarian who’s the primary curator for the occult and magic collections — a good resource. We’ll be going back soon with specific volumes to look through (maybe that Danse Macabre bound in human skin!) Elena snapped some photos for reference. They had a copy of the Audubon book on display. Huge!

Next to the library is the little memorial for H. P. Lovecraft, a Providence legend and influential horror writer. I always refer to the “Lovecraft effect” in that city, which seems to mean it’s impossible not to get lost. We had GPS and we still got lost (turns out there’s two different Prospect Streets in Providence).

So we had a great Indian lunch and snooped around the bookstore (though a drama section that has neither Beckett nor Stoppard doesn’t speak highly of their selection process). Re-energized by the trip and all the ideas we bounced around on the drive, we decided to work on storyboarding the new adventure we’d plotted out. So here’s Elena sketching away while I was writing dialogue. She’s a wonder — I so admire her skill and how she can capture emotions. I’m so excited about this story — all I can tell you is Egypt

Home again to a crying cat, good things in the mail and a boatload of email to wade through. So little time, so much to do!