me in the piazza

I'm a writer, publishing both as SJ Rozan and, with Carlos Dews, as Sam Cabot. (I'm Sam, he's Cabot.) Here you can find links to my almost-daily blog posts, including the Saturday haiku I've been doing for years. BUT the blog itself has moved to my website. If you go on over there you can subscribe and you'll never miss a post. (Miss a post! A scary thought!) Also, I'll be teaching a writing workshop in Italy this summer -- come join us!
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Yippee Ai Oh Kai Yay

Bloggin' at ya from the great, if red, state of Texas. El Paso, to be precise. First time here. Left Coast Crime convention, at which yr humble correspondent is one of 2 Guests of Honor (the other being Paco Taibo, and if you haven't read him, you might want to remedy that). This GOH gig is a blast. They put you up in a nice big room and give you a basket of goodies when you get here. You get interviewed on stage a couple of times and everyone buys your book, which is the best part.

What I've seen so fasr of El Paso is a strange place. I go to a lot of US cities and most of them have pretty depressed downtowns, with NY, Boston, Seattle and SF notably different in the regard. I've never seen anything like this, though. We're in the city's best hotel, across the street from the Art Museum and the Convention Center. Up the block is another large hotel, empty and abandoned. Along the street, more buildings in the same state. Some have occupied storefronts, but many storefront businesses are closed, too. (Some of these buildings, by the way, have some of the most beautiful terra cotta ornament I've ever seen. If I can get someone with a camera to shoot them I'll put the photos on the website.) In most places, as the downtown goes down hill once-beautiful buildings get put to ignoble uses. But rarely is real estate so worthless that abandoned buildings don't get torn down.

I'm figuring that wherever the life of El Paso takes pplace, it's not down here. I'm going to get out and see more of the city and surroundings, including the Ciudad Juarez across the border, in the next couple of days, and I'll let you know.

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