Details, Details

This week started off with a crazy downpour that made me regret my conviction to take public transport. I skipped going to the gym, opened my laptop, surfed over to Amazon, and ordered myself an umbrella.

In all my years living in the PNW, I never owned an umbrella. PNW rains don’t usually warrant an umbrella, and carrying one just makes you look like a tourist. I relied on my high quality parka to stay dry. Not stylish, but it gets the job done. Of course, after ordering the umbrella and splurging on next day post, the rain slowed to a manageable drizzle, and I haven’t needed to open the umbrella once, even though I insisted on carrying it to work most of the week.

In case you are curious, I purchased a “bubble umbrella.” It’s clear plastic except for a black nylon band around the bottom edge. I love clear umbrellas. Since I’m short, it’s hard for me to see where I’m going if I have an umbrella over my head (yet another reason I’ve avoided owning one). With a clear umbrella, I’ll know if I’m going to run into anyone. I’m also hoping that I will be a bit more visible in the evening than I would be wandering around with a solid black umbrella.

Enough about umbrellas, already.

I am halfway through my Writing Skills Workshop (aka Grammar class). I still suck at comma placement, and I still love my long sentences. But I think I’m getting better. We had our grammar mid-term on Wednesday night. I didn’t have time to study for it. We’ll see how I did when the teacher hands it back on Wednesday night. (Ugh. I hate that we have class on Halloween and that I will have to miss all the little trick-or-treaters.)

I finished the book I started last week (A Discovery of Witches). The book ends on Halloween night, so that was timely. There is a sequel, which I will probably read…eventually — I’m a little sick of every author deciding that their book needs to be a trilogy. Trilogies are really on trend right now. In case you are interested, the book borders on being an “adult Twilight” in that the love interest of the main character is a vampire. But that is about where the similarities end. The main character is an adult, and a witch, and nothing like Bella Swan. The book-world is complex and rooted in history (the author is an historian — I think this is her first novel). This makes the book more interesting than your standard vampire romance, and it works well with characters that are centuries old (like vampires) or with long family histories that date to the Salem witch trials. But the romance part has a been played, repeatedly, in recent books of this genre, and it’s getting stale. Pros. Cons. Sigh.

Instead of jumping right into the sequel, I may pick up Mr. Penumbra’s 24hr Bookshop (recommended by Preston, and written by an ex-Tweep). The author recently visited Twitter to talk about the book (and hang out with his old co-workers). He read from several sections — different sections than what he usually reads. I think it will be similar to J Pod (which is not a bad thing).