Some Good Things Between Snow Storms
A while ago, I got an e-mail from a program for young incarecerated girls in San Diego. I was excited to roganize a great heist with my publicists at Little, Brown, and we procured a crate of copies of INTO THE BEAUTIFUL NORTH for the girls. They wrote me thank-you notes that got here this week. Man. It really reminds you why you write. Not Cadillacs, not big checks, not even awards. But simple human communication. To think that a book can bring some hope, laughter or even tears to a teenage girl in trouble makes me so happy.

Here, it's all flu and sinus infections. Kind of scary because I have to fly to AZ on Wednesday, and right now, it feels like my whole head will explode when the plane takes off. Like that scene from SCANNERS. What was that? That was author Luis Urrea's sinus cavity reacting to the cabin pressure! Wow, what a shame. Pass the mop.

Still, we had a good Valentine's Day. I got Cinderella an iPod Nano. Red. See, like some John Hughes movie, I used to make her mix tapes when we first met. How can you live and love without a mix tape? So the plot--slowed somewhat by the exploding sinus--is to load all the songs that were on these tapes on the Pod. And make playlists for each tape, so she can listen to them whenever she pleases. Cool, huh?

Hey--it worked. We're coming up on 13 years this June! Go, Tom Petty! Go, Love & Rockets! Go, Neruda! Go, Beau Jocque! Go, Caifanes!

I have been working hard, by the way, on Hummingbird's Daughter II. It's 1/3 done. Very difficult. But happening.

See you in Arizona.


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