#362: A Picture Book Challenge

Workers putting letters up on State Theater marquee. Reads, At the Bijou, Night _____, Oscar Nom Best Picture
State Theatre, Traverse City, MI

We started recording for our new season of BookSmitten last month, and I’m especially geeked because my co-hosts and I will be doing something some of us have never done before: writing picture book manuscripts(!) It’s a sort of homecoming for me, too, to the kind of working-in-the-open that was the genesis of this newsletter. We’re bringing on experts to guide us through the process (and have a couple of really excellent interview guests already booked). You can listen to the teaser here and subscribe in your favorite podcasting app. The first episode will air later this month.

In other news, it was a stunningly gorgeous day today. Sun and low 60s – almost bikeable, if not for the wind. Julia and I went out for brunch and a bagel re-up (a new Sunday ritual), and afterwards I did a bit of yard cleanup ahead of spring garden planting. Same for the website, actually, as I get ready to migrate over to Ghost (is this migration something you care about? I sent a brief heads up to members but can write about it in more detail if it’s of interest!). Overall, a nice end to a week that also started well: a new short story of mine was accepted for publication in the annual Fiction Issue of the Detroit Metro Times.

In other other news, we’ve been watching this year’s Oscar nominees, and a standout so far has been Drive My Car, for its examination of grief, language, the unscriptedness of life … but really for its 1987 Cherry Red Saab 900 Turbo, the epitome of an “endowed object”:

Promo still of two Drive My Car characters standing next to car
Drive My Car (2021)

What a beauty. Here’s a nice article about the film and car.