When I was in the third grade my teacher gave us an assignment to come up with an invention. Mine was an innovative, practical, BRILLIANT way to quickly wake people up in the morning. I set an alarm to go off and had my sister, Casey, the “test subject”, lie in bed and pull a string when she heard the beep. The string released Tabasco sauce down a PVC pipe and into her mouth. “You asshole!” she said, popping right up and hitting me. (Casey routinely had her mouth washed out with soap when we . . .
“As most of you know,” I told the crowd at my book pre-launch party in Oregon a few weeks ago, “it took me ten years to publish Waiting at Hayden’s.” “Too long!” My comedian-sister, Casey, heckled me from the audience. While she was obviously kidding (she’s seen how much goes into writing and publishing a book) as I thought about her joke afterward I realized that on some level she was right. Of course it does take a long time to write a novel—or accomplish any big goal—especially since . . .