Arranging priorities

Hi everyone,

Yesterday was a good day for finding ideas. The first came while watching a taped segment of Saturday Night Live. It’s not really an idea for a story but a way to tell a story that appealed to me. I’ve tucked it away until I think of a way to use it. The second came from reading the newspaper. I think I’ll get a book going based on that one. Earlier in the week I was reading about a subject I’m working on with Charles Ghigna and stumbled across a somewhat related idea that also appeals to me.

I don’t know when I’m going to have time for any of these new thoughts. I still have one that came from kidding around with Jeff last time we were in Florida together. Jane Yolen and I have the beginning of a collaboration waiting for us to both have time to finish. On the flights to and from New York I decided to rewrite my middle grade novel with a desert setting and know how I’m going to do it so I’m eager to get back to that one. I still have a few poems and texts to write for my book with Laura Robb and any day now Mary Jo Fresch and I should hear back from our editor and learn how much tweaking, if any, he’s going to ask us to do.

Over the next few weeks I have a lot of traveling to do so it’s going to be hard to put together a lot of time in useful blocks. Writing on planes is never as practical as sitting here at the keyboard in my pajamas. Sooner or later I’ll get to all these priorities but for now I’m struggling to put them in the best order.

Coming in 2020

Hi everyone,

Yesterday I got a peek at the full digital copy of my next book, a partnership with Jane Yolen that got its start here on the blog. It was one of those days when I posted something that amused Jane, who responded in kind, to which I answered, etc. until we took our game off-line and turned our play into a book. I can’t show you any of the wonderful art by Anjan Sarkar, but I’m delighted by the whole thing and look forward to seeing this one in print come April or so of next year.

Jane’s killer rhyme scheme

Hi everyone,

Yesterday Jane Yolen laid down a challenging rhyme scheme in her contribution to September’s poems inspired by VINE. Here is it again in full. I liked the aabbb pattern in each of the first three stanzas and to make it more interesting, Jane uses the same opening line for each of those stanzas and the same line for each of the three transitional lines between stanzas. And then she wrapped up the whole affair with a witty couplet, cc. Wow!

Jane Yolen
September 1, 2019

Vine Thoughts

Every day I think it fine
To end up with a little vine.
But truth to tell (and this will stink)
I actually do not drink. . .

Which leads me to another think.

Every day I think it fine
To end up with a little whine.
(But truth to tell (and wink, wink wink)
I think a whiner is a fink.

Which leads me to another think.

Every day I think it fine
On darkest chocolate to dine.
But truth to tell this makes me drink.
So into depths I start to sink.

Which leads me to another think.

Every day from now I’ll try
To stick to veggies and stay dry.

©2019 Jane Yolen all rights reserved

With thanks to Jane, here’s my effort to follow her pattern.

Vine Lessons
David L. Harrison, September 2, 2019

When I was young and tasted wine,
if some was good a lot was fine.
The more I drank the more I bought,
till one night as I grew besot,

I had another vine-fed thought.

When I was young and tasted wine,
tipsy I kissed a sweet fraulein
and she kissed me till we were caught
and a painful lesson hubby taught.

I had another vine-fed thought.

When I was young and tasted wine,
I learned the grape is not benign.
The morning after’s not so hot.
My stomach churns, my brain is rot.

I had another vine-fed thought.

Every day from now I’ll try
to stick with vodka until I’m dry.

©2019 David L. Harrison all rights reserved

What’s on tap for this week

Hi everyone,

Mary Jo Fresch and I are wrapping up our book and will send it off to our editor at NCTE by the 15th. Laura Robb and I have now signed our contract with Corwin and are about to send our editor there the first three chapters for her review. This week I’ll be working on Chapter 4.

But that doesn’t mean it’s all I’ll do. I have some new ideas that want attention — a fun idea suggested by son Jeff Harrison and a collaboration with Jane Yolen that had to be put aside while we both focused on higher priorities. I hope to scare up enough time this week and next to advance the cause for those two. I also have ideas on the back burner for two other projects that have some editor interest. Those will need to wait a while longer, but I think about them often to keep my anticipation growing.

In snatched moments I like to sit somewhere and give my muse a chance to show me future projects. Each week brings new excitement because of such times.