Since I have been writing my novel, I am simultaneously a more generous reader and a more critical reader. Weird bizarre books that I would have impatiently tossed aside hold me as a reader because of the author’s bravery in trying to write it. I think wow – lot of sweat here, I better honor it by reading it. Or books that are more about the writing than the plot, I am fascinated. Books that I would have considered yummy page turners get tossed because I can read and feel that the author did not really work very hard on the writing but simply took the existing tropes and used them with out a lot of thought. When I read my favorite authors who are writing in the same general arena as I am, I get terrified. I become paralyzed as a writer because wow – those books are amazing – those characters are rich, interesting and amazing. So, then I have to breath deep a couple of times and shake it off and mutter to myself “here to have fun writing, engage some readers and that’s it”. I figure it’s all in the hands of my characters – if I manage to let them do their thing and polish them so you can see and feel them – it will all be good. Sometimes they take me places – I am not sure quite how they led me there. Thinking of the last week. I ripped up the outline for the end of Naberius. Huh, who thought that would work? It was more of a suggestion anyway – the characters just took off in another direction. I think I am back in control. Someone popped into the story and he was supposed to be a pretty much cardboard baddie but he walked in and I thought, “Oh wow he is very interesting isn’t he …”. I am hoping readers will agree. Anyway, I am eyeing my growing digital pile of books to be read – I have to rank them but if a favorite author comes out, I will just toss them all aside anyway. Someone has recently suggested some fairly dark memoir/fiction books and they were amazing but I couldn’t read them straight through. They kind of amazed me with their honesty – I had to stop myself from writing them Stuart Smalley type e-mail – you are a good person, you’re smart and you should like yourself, big hugs! I consider myself a moody reader – I am pretty much the same way with picking restaurants. NO Chinese tonight – so tired of Chinese. I am really not dissing Chinese food – I just don’t want it right now. I admit to hardly watching TV – occasionally I will binge watch but generally I am happiest with a book, any book.