Stephanie Burgis
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This morning started out just perfectly. First, Patrick and I had a great joint writing session right after breakfast. This is the best time for me to write, and joint writing sessions are always the best way for me to get my writing done - we both retreat to our writing study (making as much use as possible of it before it becomes the baby's room!), the wireless network is ceremonially unplugged, Patrick sits down at his desk to write, and I curl up on the futon with my laptop, my Moleskine, and about four different colored pens. (I do have a desk, but I almost never sit there.) Usually Maya snuggles up at my side. (...Except, of course, when she has to bounce off Patrick's legs, tossing her toy at him in hope and impatience. She doesn't always understand the point of writing sessions.) This set-up is always useful because it means I can't be lazy and go online instead of writing - Patrick would notice if I plugged the wireless back in, and that would be embarrassing. And the fact that Patrick is hard at work on his own writing is wonderful motivation for me to get to work on mine.

But best of all are days like today, when what I'm writing feels like so much fun that, once I've started, I can't stop. I meant to stop at 500 words. Then at 700. Then at 850. I had other things I was planning to do afterwards, as soon as the writing was finished. But I kept cheating on my time limit - just a few more lines. Just another bit, just to show how she reacts when she sees them together. Oooh, that would be a fun thing for Step-Mama to say...but ouch, what Mrs. Carlyle is going to say right back to her! I ended up writing more than I have in ages, sailing through on the sheer momentum of the story, and I even - embarrassingly - giggled out loud at some of the lines that came out of my characters' mouths. It always feels horribly immature to do that...but I love my characters, even the horrible ones, and especially when they are being completely outrageous. It felt great.

And then, not twenty minutes after I'd finally dragged myself to a stop, I heard the mail arrive. I wandered out to the foyer to pick it up, was pleased to see two new rental DVDs from Amazon (Deadwood Season 2, Disc 3, ordered by Patrick, and Death at a Funeral, ordered by me) - and then let out a squeak of exitement. There was a birthday-themed package waiting for me, from the awesome Tiffany Trent. I unwrapped the package and found an absolutely gorgeous pendant made by my favorite jeweler in the world, Elise Matheson, and chosen for me at Wiscon - so it was an all-in-one combination of beauty, friendship, and a taste of my favorite con in the world, which I'd been so sad about missing this year. I can't imagine any nicer surprise.

I'm wearing it now and still beaming, over an hour later. Definitely the right way to start a Tuesday!

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