So the Big News is BIG (or going to be)
For those of you who haven't seen the pics on Facebook, this is our new Bernese Mountain Dog puppy - also the reason why I'm hungry. She hangs out in the kitchen during the day for several hours at a time to get her used to being alone, and if I go in to eat, I am sucked into cuteness and my morning is shot. So I starve.
Thus far she can sit, lay down, shake, and roll over - though that one is often only haflway since she loves belly rubs. What we need to do is figure out a way for her not to have to go outside at 5am. Suggestions?
3 FUN FACTS ABOUT BERNESE
- Bernese mountain dogs get their name from the area where they hail: the Bern canton in central Switzerland.
- In 1850, cheese plants opened and folks wanted to move large shipments. They enlisted Bernese to pull carts filled with dairy products and bread to different farms, often on their own.
- They can haul 1000 pounds,10 times their own weight. Uh, yes so they can weigh 100+ lbs - gulp - but as you can see from this pic, she's on the "smaller" side. #allrelative
In travel news
My lady Karena (and I know, you are thinking "how did she land this foxy lady?" answer: BLACKMAIL) and my son flew to Barcelona. He has now decided he wants to spend his gap year there. Tapas will do that to you.
While there, we saw quite a few Catalan flags hanging from balconies. Our impassioned chocolate tour guide told us about the efforts to of Catalonia to gain independence from Spain. It reminded me a bit of how some feel in California...
In Award Season news
SUGAR LAND snagged an IPPY, so I'll be in New York the week of May 26. And, I was awarded a two-week VCCA Writing Fellowship in Virginia, which I'll be taking after New York to finish up my next novel (which is a near future book - more in the next news). YAZIMTHRILLED is the best word I can come up with. Or DAMNNEARTINKLING. That's good too. :)
Hey folks! The last leg of the SUGAR LAND tour is coming up, starting with two Atlanta events that share a conspicuous theme: Wine, Whiskey & Words on March 16th with a loose, lively Q&A and, well, wine and whiskey (or bubbly water!) and Books & Booze at the City Winery with Posman Books on March 19 where rumor has it THEY CRAFT A COCKTAIL INSPIRED BY THE NOVEL! Just a tad excited about that ;)
Following that I'll be at the Virginia Book Festival (which is FREE) on March 22 then AWP in Portland, OR along with 18,000 others.
Oh Give Me a Home Where the Dairy Cows Roam...
...and the roosters crow all day long! And that is what I have now here in Muttenz, Switzerland - where I live half the time. Karena, my ladyfriend (shown on the big screen reading next to me in the opening image to this little ditty), is threatening to do a COW CAM - more on that should it happen. They do frollick, after all. Meanwhile here they are, right outside the window where I'm writing this...
Who Does It Best?
As you may know, Karena and I recently moved to Basel, Switzerland (yes, right before my book launch - yikes). We kept the house in Portland since we work between the two pretty often, so that had many of you asking me on my book tour "Which do you like better?" Tricky question really... so I decided to do a list of Who Does What Better: Basel v. Portland. (And yes, those are the names on coke in Switzerland - who is Reto?)
Amazing-ness from the West Coast book tour
Here are a few images from readings with Jillian Lauren and Siel Ju at Book Soup in LA, a banter with Kate Carroll de Gutes at Powell's in Portland, and with Charlie Jane Anders at the amazing Writers with Drinks in SF (three bucket lists CHECK)! More touring to commence in the Spring...