Late this past Friday night I put the finishing (for now) touches on the latest version of my James manuscript and sent it off to my agent. An editor is already interested, so I could have sent it directly to her, but before I did I wanted it to get a reading untainted by way too many hours of staring at index cards and spiral notebooks.

Also, like a pet cat with a dead bird it caught, I wanted to show off my latest effort to my new handler. I hope the new draft is better received than most dead birds are.

One-year-old F was sick for several days after Christmas, so I spent a lot of time with him slumped on my shoulder while I read a recent book about E.F. and slathered it with Post-It flags (in Day-Glo colors, I’ll have you know). I’ve since started reading a second book and expect a third to arrive from Amazon this week. So, my research for E.F. is well underway, and I’m even more excited about the topic than before.

On my lunch hours this week, I’ll be revisiting the Smith manuscript I revised last summer. It’s filled with facts and as many quotes as a semiarticulate, taciturn man (Smith, not me — I don’t think) could muster. But now I need to add a certain personal spin to his story to make it come alive. On the other hand, that sounds fairly involved — maybe I should be saving it for a five-day work week…