Almost didn’t make it into the office today. Hell, I almost didn’t make it out of the alleyway behind my house. I backed out of the garage and then spent a good fifteen minutes spinning my wheels in frustration before finally managing to work my way free. In retrospect, good thing I was delayed because, just as I was about to roll away, I received a call from Fondy informing me that I had forgotten my laptop and (more importantly) my lunch inside.
The laptop turned out to be of less importantance as we spent most of the day watching casting streams. So far, we have our Rush, Young, and Eli (official announcements on the latter two to come later this week). And, after today’s session, it looks like we may have our Tamara. We have two terrific candidates for both Scott and Stasiak, and a very likely Chloe. Otherwise, a fairly quiet day. Given recent developments, the writing staff now numbers five, but there is talk of adding at least one more newbie to the mix in addition to freelancers.
With the month of December behind us, I’d like to make quick mention of my two favorite reads of the past month. Just the other week, I was discussing the frustrations inherent in the writing process and yet, today, I’m singling out two authors whose stories are so imaginative, prose is so engaging, and books are so full of wondrous detail that I have a hard time imagining they ever hit the wall. I refer to Terry Pratchett and Jeffrey Ford.
Pratchett’s Guards! Guards! is one of the funniest books I’ve read in recent memory and, thus far, my favorite entry in his Discworld series. Our protagonists are the motley members of the City Watch, a lovably colorful crew who end dealing with a little more than your typical civil unrest when a dragon (the stuff of legend!) begins stalking the not-so-fair city of Ank-Morpork. Palace intrigue, errant magic, unlikely heroes, an inscrutable baboon librarian – this is Pratchett at his very best, delivering a narrative replete with comical misadventure, hilarious turns of phrase, and fantasy tropes skewed and skewered. If you like Pratchett, go get this book. And if you don’t like Pratchett – what’s your freakin’ problem?
The Physiognomy is an equally remarkable novel, a astonishingly imaginative tale compliments of Jeffrey Ford, one of the most inventive writers in any genre. For years, Physiognomist First Class Cley has served the Well-Built City and its enigmatic ruler, The Master, rooting out conspiracy and deception via the science of physiognomy, the assessment of character through the interpretation of an individual’s general appearance. But when he is dispatched to investigate the disappearance of a mysterious white fruit rumored to have originated from the Earthly Paradise, Cley quickly discovers that appearances can be most deceiving and his hitherto comfortable existence surreptitiously surreal. Original, enthralling, and wonderfully weird!
So, last night, I walk into the kitchen and find Fondy sprawled out on the couch, watching the season premiere of The Bachelor. Lame. I was about to move on when she called out to me: “Come watch with me and check out the women!” Well, in the interest of spending some quality time with the wife, I went and got my laptop, then settled in and joined her. Onscreen, the first delivery of desperate women arrived. I worked and watched, revising the opening scene to my script while, onscreen, the soon-to-be-laid lothario subconsciously signaled his interest (“Wow, you look beautiful.”) and lack thereof (“She’s a very special woman.”). Just as my interest began to wane, it was immediately restored by the promise of “The greatest twist in Bachelor history!” coming up after the break! As it turned out, it really wasn’t much of a twist at all and I was left disappointed and, frankly, a little misled. I was about to give up on the show when the voice-over announced “The most shocking rose ceremony yet!” coming up after the commercial break! Intrigued, I stuck it out. Again, I don’t watch the show so it may well have been “the most shocking rose ceremony yet”, but this only leads me to assume that all the previous rose ceremonies must have been pretty fucking boring. Still, I have to admit I was shocked by the fact that the doofus sent my favorite gal packing. “I can’t believe he didn’t pick Shelby!”I expressed my outrage at the early exit of my favorite hottie, expecting my wife to chime in in agreement. Receiving no response, I turned to discover the other couch was empty. Apparently, Fondy had left about ten minutes into the show and gone upstairs to work. Well, being the completist I am, I stayed for the tearful goodbyes (“Boohoohoo. It’s back to speed-dating and church potluck lunches for me. Boohoohoo.”) but DID NOT watch scenes from next week’s episode.
Though I hear it promises “The most shocking rose ceremony yet!”. So maybe I’ll just tune in for that part.