Monday, May 11, 2009

Families and inspiration

Whenever I'm with my inlaws and they're driving me nuts, I joke, "Watch out, or I'm going to put this in a story." When I'm with my family, it's no joke.

I got a lot of material this weekend--four days on a rare trip back home for a family event and all the waiting around and confused planning and bad meals at "nice" restaurants (Macaroni Grill counts as nice?) and whose car are we going to take it and I saw an obituary for the aunt of somebody you never you heard of that goes with it. I told myself that once I got past this very-typical first novel I would stop trying to resolve my childhood trauma in fiction and start inventing some new stories. But I don't know-- there's still a lot there to work with. A trip back every couple years for a wedding or a graduation should keep my pretty well supplied for a long career.

Speaking of invented stories, I made the perfect choice for my travel reading. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon. It's the first thing I've read by him, and I'm eager to get his earlier books to track his progress up to this one. It was delightful all along the way and satisfying at the end.

And it met all the criteria I lay out the other day, including being just the right length. When I got off the plane, I had about 12 pp. left. I didn't have the courage of my convictions, though, and I ended up buying several books during the trip just in case I ran out. I hoard them the way some people buy tube socks on sale in anticipation of the apocalypse.

No comments: