Thing 1: Inspired in equal parts by something I recently read and recordings I’ve been listening to from 1938-1942, I’ve come up with a fresh, invigorating — and maybe even workable — narrative approach to my Alan Lomax book. Luckily, I’ve done only two chapter drafts already, so it’s not like I’d have to rewrite the entire manuscript. (That may come later, should I go whole-hog with this new approach only to find it doesn’t work after all.)

Thing 2: I’ve taken the first step in researching a potential new picture book project I’m calling D.B. For this one, I’d be getting out and about and visiting with people and getting to know more about a certain type of heavy machinery — quite a bit different from staying up late with copies of old letters.

Thing 3: I’m on the hook to make a presentation next Tuesday night at a religious-education gathering at my church, and with a week to spare I’ve already got a draft written. Or rather, I’ve got several paragraphs written in sequence on several different nights, and it seems that they should add up to a coherent 5-7 minutes of something intelligible, perhaps even inspirational. But I really should confirm that. This will be good practice for the presentations I hope to be doing at conferences in the not-so-terribly distant future. If I get nervous, I’ll just look out at the congregation and imagine that they’re librarians.