I’ve decided not to pursue any of those five old manuscripts — in some cases not at all, in others at least not in the near future.

And you know what? It feels liberating, like I’m now completely free to focus on new work, rather than move into this new phase of my career dragging around old stories like Woodrow Call hauling the one-legged remains of Gus McCrae of back to Lonesome Dove. I’m surprised to feel this way, but glad. Glad I wrote those stories in the first place, and glad to be moving on.

Speaking of that new work, and my questions from the other night: So long as someone who finishes my picture book biographies and 1) wants to find out more about the subject and 2) doesn’t feel betrayed when they learn the things I left out, I figure I’ll be doing all right.