Wednesday, January 12, 2005

“Before he came down here, it never snowed. And afterwards, it did.”

The Movie: Edward Scissorhands, 1990 (Caroline Thompson, screenwriter, from a story by Thompson and Tim Burton; Tim Burton, dir.)
Who says it: Winona Ryder as Kim, tragic sweetheart of Edward Scissorhands (Johnny Depp)
The context: Kim remembers her doomed romance, before Edward retreated from the world forever.
How to use it: To acknowledge the lasting effect of someone who’s gone.

"Bad weather's starting," I said this morning to Jerry the Postmaster. I don't think I'll pick up the Maine accent, but I do find myself imitating my neighbors' speech patterns -- no articles, no unnecessary words.

"I can tell by everyone coming in so early," Jerry said. It's true; I'd have stopped by the post office this afternoon, on my way home from the gym, but I can't count on being able to navigate the sidewalks later on. The snow is fine and powdery at the moment -- it gets in Dizzy's nose, and he snorts -- but it might turn to ice later on.

My friend and client Kent Harrington has launched the mini-tour for his new book, Red Jungle, and reports that it's going very well so far. With all due respect to my other clients, Red Jungle is the best book I've ever worked on -- have I said that already? I think I've said that already. Anyway, everyone should read it, and you can order it from The Mystery Bookstore by clicking here.

I've been reading a little too much lately, as strange as that sounds. I've read eight novels in the last six days, plus a screenplay and a friend's manuscript, and the effect is similar to having eaten an entire quart of ice cream in one sitting. The best of all this reading was Ken Bruen's The Magdalen Martyrs, the third in his Galway-based Jack Taylor series. Bruen's books are deceptively simple, spare novels that incorporate an extraordinary body of literature, from Emily Dickinson to Thomas Merton to Van Morrison. People call Ken Bruen a "writer's writer," but he's actually a reader's writer, because the more you've read, the more you get out of his books.

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