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Showing posts from January, 2006

I blame bush

For Amy's morning head. Yeah, I suggested the drinking game, but she didn't really have to play it. And drinking every time he said terror? Bad idea.

Sorry, Aimless.

SOTU? Will you watch?

I may force myself to watch the president at 9 pm. The good news is that it's on after bedtime for my bonzo #3 so I can play:

1. This drinking game

2. or maybe the Delay version of the drinking game.

(games mentioned on www.mydd.com)

I know there's a pool somewhere online for how many seconds into the speech the words 9/11 will be uttered. Right, found it here. Heh. Funny.

I wonder if there's one about how many times the phrase will be mentioned. Or how many times the word "terrorist" will be used.

If anyone knows any Democratic Rebuttal games, feel free to post them. I expect to be toasted, disgusted and/or bored by then. (note: if there isn't a Rebuttal Game, and you devise one, I don't think the words "Abramoff" or "scandal" uttered by any Democrat should rate a full glass of anything. You'd chug the whole bottle of whatever's in front of you within a couple of minutes.)

the blog makes my heart hurt

no, it's not acid you wiseacres. It's mother fear--heartache for other mothers.

I couldn't figure out why until I realized that this person writing about the war (he's also on my "blogs I read" list) sounded a hell of a lot like my 15-year-old boy and his friends. I'm not exactly sure what I mean--the words they choose? The things they notice? My kid and this guy share that voice of the young. I know, I know. The Morris guy's got to be in his 20s at least. But still. . .
I look at my kid who isn't shaving yet but has that shadow happening. Those people fighting and dying are just about his age. Only a couple of years difference. Jeeebus. Far too easy to see the kids I know there now.

And then I look at the refugees I work with. And the babies with that blank look on their faces. . .Oh Lordy Lord. I do wish some mother would be able to back George Bush into a corner and let go. Not Cindy Sheehan. Her anger has turned into something else. I keep envisi…
Best First Lines of Books. How many of these books have you read? I'm going to go back and count. But first . . . lines. . .

kate scurries to open latest document.


It was the traveler's first long-term assignment and he hated nearly every moment of it. Hmmm. Could be improved.

Here's the first line of Lori Devoti's current WIP:
It was the fear he smelled first, a pheromone-laden scent almost irresistible to the hell hound within him. She was here--somewhere.

Her two published books are contemporaries set in Missouri--clearly she can write a variety of genres. . .

SBD at least they don't envision the queen

I'm loathing heroines just now. I've read two books with the most hapless women as heroines. Well-meaning, loving and as damp as a sponge left in a bucket of lukewarm spit. Things happen to them. They are not catalysts in their world. Sure, they talk big. But when it comes to taking unpleasant action, they hesitate and hem and haw until they are rescued. God forbid they soil their feminine spirit by actually taking action.** It reminds me of the Disney movies where the bad guys always fall off buildings or trampled by elephants rather than get done in by the hero.

Here's my guess: the writers tried to hard to envision an imaginary Southern or Midwestern Reader.

I've gone to a couple of talks by a couple of authors who talked about writing with Their Audience In Mind as if they wrote for a bunch of people who exist in another world. Could be true, too. These writers are successful women. They said they deliberately model their heroines after their vision of their Reader--…

Political thing

I called the Hartford office of Joe Lieberman at 9:30 this morning.

My kid's the one who convinced me to call again. "My God, it won't be a democracy if he [Alito] gets in, it'll be an oligarchy. And he thinks it's okay to give the president more power?"

I pointed out that there are elections this year and that the Republican party might lose its hold on at least one branch of government--but I called anyway.

I've called Lieberman's office during working hours about six times over our years in CT and for the first time ever, I got recording asking me to leave a message, then another message that the mailbox was full.

When I got an operator I asked her why the mailbox was still full. She said no, it's full again. They're trying but they can't keep up with the calls. She didn't ask for my name or address, just my zip code. We wondered if she should drink coffee or lay off the stuff for the rest of the day. She said she didn't have time …

Today's Fab Web Find

Small Ads from the UK. I don't know-- is it a site or a blog? Scroll down and read them all .

Thought someone ought to know

The shooting pain in the diodes up and down my left side. . .

The head is still on strike. Ears, nose currently not on speaking terms with me. Members of my immediate family think that maybe I should go upstairs now or maybe try out the not-speaking-terms-plan with them. Apparently they are not interested in hearing another word about how rotten I feel.

* * * *

I did manage to post the thursday 13 addresses in the thursday 13 post.

* * * *

Also I signed a petition and I called Joe Lieberman to stop the man who would make Bush king.

Work!

I'm behind on my deadlines so I'll add my Thursday 13-er visitors later. That TT thing is a blast. It's fun to see little bits of people's lives.

Hey, do you need a pup fix? Go look at my dawg here.

late, sort of

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Thirteen Things about KATE1. I went to Camp Rim Rock for three years. Oh, how I loathed that third year. I still remember the Cherokee Unit song "We're the unit on the mountain, you can always hear us shoutin' " and I sing it to annoy my kids. 2. I enjoy annoying my kids. 3. I shoplifted once and it was by accident. I told a lot of lies but never stole anything--on purpose.4. I love wasting time with this sort of thing. 5. The only two movies I ever walked out on: Grease and some movie staring the happy hooker, Xaviera Hollander. I think I left the happy hooker movie because my boyfriend wanted to. Or maybe I really was disgusted? I'm not sure. We were waaay young.6. I spent four years working as an artist's model (part-time). It was okay work, but I made more money working in a bar. 7. I wouldn't model nude any more. Not even for my artist friends. Especially for them. Ewk.8. I have many recurrent dreams about two houses. It's been more than a decade…

Sometimes googling yourself is FUN

I made a vow last year to:
1. stop googling myself
2. not check my Amazon numbers
3. never, ever call Ingrams again

I've done a good job too. The result is an increase of time and sanity.

Just now I thought it wouldn't hurt to google good old Summer. I hadn't done it before and just once wouldn't hurt.

I found a review of a Summer's Futurelove that's sAHweeeet**.


"I like so many things about this story that I don't know where to start. Futurelove features one of my favorite kinds of heros--one with less sexual experience than the heroine. Collins struggles to stay aloof as he has been trained to do, but he finds Candy very tempting. His inexperience was realistically depicted; at least, it seemed that way to me. And he learns quickly, hoo boy!Candy ends up experiencing a roller-coaster ride in this story as she tries to figure out where Collins is from. She's a delightful heroine with a great sense of humor. In fact, I smiled all through the story. Future…

care . . . managed

Parents later.
First we get Whine Part Deux.

I'm on antibiotics and was told "if you don't feel better in 3 days, call."
Day's the third day and I don't feel better. I called and left a message.
Several hours later:

Dr's office: Hello Kathy? This is Doc M's office. We can call in a prescription for ceftin if you're not allergic to it.
Kate: Nope, I'm not allergic so that's okay. Wait a sec. [picks up bottle stares at the cerfuroxime--the label has tiny print that says "generic for ceftin"] No, wait--I'm on ceftin.
Office: We can call it in to any pharmacy in town.
Kate: No, I'm already on ceftin. I don't need more.
Office: Then what's this note saying you needed an antibiotic? It says ceftin.
Kate: I'm on ceftin. It doesn't seem to be working.
Office: You haven't given it enough time.
Kate: I've been taking it enough time to contract a raging yeast infection.
Office: It doesn't happen that fast. One day isn…

burp

I swear at least ten of my extra pounds comes from Borek and baklava.

I like giving the ladies rides. I don't mind visiting...but they practically stand over me as they feed me and shove cups of really scary coffee into my hands. The message must have gone out: Kate likes this stuff. They make plates of it for me and insist on forcing it into me while they're watching (Fatima literally pushes the fork at me over and over) And then they give me a package to take home.

It would feel like I had a bunch of mommas but we're all about the same age, the ladies and I. Plus my mother couldn't boil water. The woman could put together a mean questionaire though. And she once wrote a book about my aunt's psychiatric half-way house. Oh, I got a great note about my parents. I'm off to find it.

speaking of effluvium

If you're not into politics, then consider it comedy. The Onion couldn't do better, except the guy is serious. This new word he invents, homosexualization, is pure genius. The gist (not jist, dammit)? Ya can't fight Islam when you have gay cowboys as part of your culture. The manly men are weakened. My comment to the admiring general: Best manly men line of thinking since the "precious bodily fluid" schtick in Dr. Strangelove.

I think I should one should ease into Longman's (snicker. Longman. snicker) article. Start with The General's link.

You go ahead. I'm going to the store to buy milk, more Kleenex and fancy-pants "he" soap for today's new washing maching. The workday is shot for me anyway--midterms at school mean I've got a boy around.

memo to self

when you feel rotten, do not read or post on political sites.

Cough Sniffle. Warning: MORE self pity

The cold turned into an ear and sinus infection. I have the horse pill antibiotics but they haven't kicked in yet.

The unexpected-snow-day boys are still deliriously happy and whooping and hollering and inciting the dogs to bark. There's a wrestling match taking place--a king of the mountain game involving the big exercise ball. As usual, it'll All End In Tears. In the meantime, I'm off to lock myself into the bathroom because it's the only room in the house with a working lock.

Destined To Be A Writer****

According to every single cover bio I've read lately--and for some reason I've read quite a few--authors declare they've always known that they were Fated to be writers. The moment they understood that such a vocation existed, writing became their goal. In the bios, they skip mentioning their current life and look back through the mists of time to That Moment They Knew.

"Patsy Writer knew she was a writer before she knew she could talk. She clutched a crayon and pretended to 'make books'."
"Imogene Author decided to become a writer when she experienced a triumphant moment in her second grade classroom. Her first story made her teacher and classmates rise to their feet and break into applause."


I didn't know I was going to write for fun until I was a grown up and it turned out that I was a pretty rotten painter (that took more than my four years of art school to figure out). Writing short stories was more fun than bowling or watching tv, and che…

I HATE washing machines, ALL of them

hate hate hate hate hate. Worse'n my opinion of Bill O'Reilly, more'n I dislike the dog next door (the one that bit my son and my dog), greater than my loathing for early rising, stronger than my aversion to flavored coffee . . . is my hatred of washing machines.

The pie is piled higher and at the top are the broken washers. . .WHEEEEE! CRASH.

New machine needs a new control panel. Good byeeeee, new machine! Hello, laundromat.

Way Too Much Fun.

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Oy, Merry, you've done it again. You've found another great time waster on the internet. Stinking work and numerous broken washing machines will have to wait. (Did I tell you that our brand new washing machine is flooking BROKEN?? DID I??)

Use your photo to make your own Romance Novel Cover--and other time wasters, like the Wanted Poster.

Okay, how about a birthday AND christmas present?

$70 million = $35 million per event. See? I'll even do the budgeting for you. Not so bad, eh?

Actually Andrew Tobias was talking about yatchs yesterday. What I really want is a combo yatch and one of these

Endangered Satire

Uh oh. Mel's in trouble. Our man Mel Gibson is being threatened by some dude with the same name:

I am litigation counsel to Mel Gibson. It has come to our attention that you are operating a purported "Mel Gibson Blog" at http://www.melgibsonsblog.blogspot.com. On behalf of Mr. Gibson, I demand that you immediately cease and desist any further use of Mr. Gibson's name, likeness, or persona[...] Under California Law, the appropriation of any persons name, voice, likeness, etc., commercially or otherwise, is actionable in a suit for damages[...]To avoid litigation over this clear violation of Mr. Gibson's rights, please cease the operation of this blog immediately and confirm the same to me no later than 5 p.m. tomorrow, PST.Clearly Mel touched a nerve. UPDATE: Hey, look--we're all Mel on this boat. I'd mess with my blog and turn into Melvina, I suppose, but Bec would have to rescue me.

spookyass weather

====wind

Hey SUISAN! Thank you for the yarn. I'm taking it into work this morning and I know it'll be a huge hit. Do you want anything made just for you?

UPDATE: Things I saw in the street today whilst driving through Hartford.
garbage cans
recyling bins
christmas trees, at least five
newspaper distribution box
hubcaps
garbage--lots and lots of garbage and paper
branches
part of an awning
mysterious metal objects

What Do You Say, Dear?

Anyone else remember those books? Illustrated by Maurice Sendak--I lovedthose etiquette books when I was a kid. The bears, the princess, the bearseating the princess. Politely, of course.

On one of my loops, authors are relating Horror Stories about strangers, friends, family members and strangers backing them into a corner and reading their book aloud. The author's book, not the reader's.

Here's how I avoid it: I don't go to parties and I don't see much of my other-than-immediate-family. . . (unfortunately.)

But even so, a couple of times people have whipped out one of my books and started reading a section--usually a badly written one, or one allllll about sex--aloud. Oh, man, I'm hoping that Susan R. gets published some day just because I can't wait to pull that on her, the goober.

In blogs and on the loops, I've run across a lot of different ways to politely tell people that no, a writer doesn't have to have continous orgies to get the erotic bits i…

A Seller Speaks

Hey all you writers, she's only one bookseller--and not a bookstore owner at that--nevertheless, go ahead take note: Bookseller Chickdoes not like bookmarks. She does like some things and if you're wondering what they are, go ahead and check out her cool post.

I've done a long-winded bit about publicity before. A terribly valuable post. Terribly. Maybe I'll add this link to BSC to it.

Another Reason to Love the Internet

WARNING: another Body Parts Discussion, kids. Go Away Before You Get Grossed Out.

A while back I had a "name that body part for women" post. I complained that there were lots of slang terms for the penis, nada for the labia.

I guess I didn't look enough. For some reason I ran across this page today. What was I doing?early morning research? Oh no, I know. I read the phrase "panty hamster" and had to look it up--it's there, all right.

Anyway, that page has nick-names for womanly parts dressed, undressed, pre- and post-coital, on the rag, etc. It even has a list of nick-names for the part of the body between the genitalia and the anus. ("The perineum" for those who care about accuracy. The "taint" or "gruntle", for those who don't.)

here's a small selection from the infamous dirty slang page [their name, not mine]:
Labia visible through clothing
• Beetle's bonnet
• Camel's toe
• Monkey's chin
• Shark's fin (swimsuit…

what was the subject again?

Who cares? Smart bitches and RTB and Karen and all are wading in with lots of great squawking and carrying on about Amazon reviews and each other and previous events.

It makes me all warm and happy and reminds me of the days when I used to have real conversations with actual people. That sort of thing gets me so nostalgic. I even drank a beer to get the full flavor of being in a bar, ferfe.

But on to a more serious subject: are you people really that ignorant? Yet another so called "educated" person claimed not to know about Archy and Mehitabel. Get yourselves to the bookstore because yeah, a lot of Don Marquis's stuff is on the web and yeah, the socio-political world of his era is long dead. . . but don't you want to have a copy around to impress your next date? I thought so. Nothing will impress him/her more than poems by a guy pretending to be a cockroach. Trust me on this one.

what I want in my obituary: (a verse from the song of mehitabel, the alley cat)

i know tha…

Yet another "Kate is a Fraud" Day?

Yep, there're a lot of these days--way too many, if you ask me.
I'm going to go back to work, but first I have to stop for a quick whine about the fact that everyone on the goddamn planet writes better than I do and there's no point in my writing another sentence because it's all crap, crap, crap and I don't know how I managed to fool anyone for more than a minute that this useless shallow nonsense is worth wasting even a single sheet of cheap recycled paper.

Phew.

Now I'll go drink some coffee, eat another chunk of something yummy from my huge pile of Bajram goodies the ladies gave me** (bakalava, borek, smoked chewy mystery meat, pitak, and a few other mysterious sweet things) and then get back to work.

* * * *

later on: huh. Remember how I kvetched about Futurelove's first review which was on ecata? Daisy Dexter Dobb pointed out ecata's review of it --the book got 4.5. I don't think it's the same review, either. Weird. But this is me, notcomplaini…

Mark Your Calendar

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February 12 = Darwin Day!


UPDATE: and while we're waiting for D Day, you can watch this totally unrelated video. My kid is still laughing at it.

disillusioned.

Paperbackwriter has a few examples of writers as cheaters on her blog. My first thought? Sheesh, it's my day to learn about creative people and industries behaving badly.

You know about that scam where you pay $50 and your original "prize-winning" poem is published**? Okay, it's not entirely cheating or lying because you do get a nice leatherbound book of poetry. Turns out the borderline-scam of demanding pay for the prize is not just aimed at the wannabe creative types of the world.

I was walking home from school with my neighbor the musician who writes and plays scores for television and he casually mentioned that he's up for an Emmy.

Wow! Oh WOW. This is big time. This is The Pulitzer Prize for television. WOW!

I jumped around for a couple of minutes (and nearly busted my butt on the icey sidewalk) but then he said, "I've won a couple of times before but I've never sent in the money."

Huh?

Turns out that after you're nominated, you have to send…

SBD: chocolate works better

I was going to write about the reviewer who uses many!! exclamation marks, mixes your/you're, its/it's, their/they're and then expects her opinion on someone else's writing to be taken seriously. . .but really? Duh.

After that, I toyed with the idea of HEA vs the poignant and memorable tragic ending supplied by a bus and how that book is taken more seriously just because of the damn bus . . . but no, that was trite too.

What about the sprinkling of comedy in a mostly dark book? Why does it drive people nuts? I mean if Shakespeare can do it then why can't . . . oh, honestly. Yawn.

I have better luck with chocolate.



Simple but Effective Brownies
4 squares of baking chocolate (unsweetened)
1 1/2 sticks of butter or margarine
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 cup flour
1 or 1.5 cups semisweet chips.

Melt baking choc and butter
Mix everything together.
Bake in a 13x9 pan for about 30-35 minutes

Checking for doneness via the toothpick method doesn't work well because of the melty chocolate ch…

doug steps into the twilight zone

Luminaries visit his blog and mm takes off her clothes. But I'm still waiting for a visit for some real names. Like what about Henry Kissinger? He's got time on his hands now he's retired. Or John Wayne--he's got nothing but time, not sure about the hands.

Ah blogs.

Could it be nepotism? 83!

Mrs. G gave me an 83!

Mrs. Giggles's review of Futurelove

For those who think 83 isn't great shakes: go to Mrs. G's site and you'll see how rare the higher numbers are--although she's been handing out more 80-90s lately. She's mellowing in her old age, perhaps?

I really didn't think Futurelover was her sort of story, and I wonder if she likes it in part because I announced far and wide (and to her) that she gave me the idea.

and damn straight--the story Futurelove was inspired by her virginal hero passage in this rant. How could anyone NOT read that passage about the sexually clueless hero and not get inspired? I get a fit of the giggles every time I read that selection from her Very Bad Romance Novel.

Anyway. It kills me that my story got a grade almost as good as Bone Deep, which is my favorite book of the last couple of months (and I've already read a lot of books lately. Boys' time off = Kate's reading time).

For what it's worth, Somebody Wond…

My Christmas Present

I love having snotty adolescent and pre-adolescent boys. I mean it. Sometimes the eye-rolling is gets old butwhen they show their lack of respect in amazingly creative and funny ways, I have to applaud. And when they turn that smart alecky goodness into cards and projects for me? Oh, it just turns me into apuddle of happy Mother Goo. Boys one and two (15 and 12) got together and made me a gift. I wish I could add their lovely festive Christmas border. Heck I wish I could add the numbers.



A List of Five Hundred (Give or Take) Things we Like Less Than Kate Rothwell

Che Guavera
Nouns
Adjectives
Pronouns
Adverbs
Lemon Custard
Flan
White Mice
The Mason-Dixon line
Gettysburg
Fredericksburg
Antietam
Shiloh
The Seven Days Battle
Stonewall Jackson’s Shenandoah Campaign
Strength for now
Strength for later
Strength that you kinda put in the back of the fridge with the old Chinese food till it grows a fine layer of mold, and then you take it out and say “What the hell is this?”
Sasquatch
Solitaire
Crazy Bruce
Paper hat…

Two Pathetic Things: One potentially Important

I read this article by a man who ended up on the no-fly list. He wrote a book critical of the Bush administration--could it be a matter of political payback? Who knows? Maybe he ended up there because his name is common. No matter how he ended on the list, he ought to be cleared once and for all. He's not out to blow up any planes, he should to be able to get the heck off the list and it's pathetic that he and the other Americans who've proved they're not enemies of the country can't get their names erased. They can't even find out how they got on the list to begin with.

Here's the second and more pathetic fact. As I read it, I wondered how I could get on the no-fly list too. I wanted a good excuse to not even be able to get on airplanes. (Turns out he's on the watch list, which means he has to get to the airport early and expect a fair amount of grief. Oh. I thought he could no longer fly the friendly skies.)

happy release day!

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No, I'm not getting out of jail. This book is available today. I glanced at the text and at once picked out the dreaded Repeated Word. Ack! No! I thought I'd found it! I thought there was only One Per Book! But I'm hoping it's just nerves. Does this book make me look fat?

For a short time, until I can figure out how to change the page, the excerpt at Summerdevon.com is not PG-13. Let that be a warning to you. (Sorry, it's not particularly hot. Hardly seems fair, does it.)



blurb: Time-travel agent Collins is preparing for a routine assignment to the past when rebels kill his commander and force him back in time, unprepared. With no sex-suppression drugs and incomplete training, he’s stranded in a strange old world.

Candy was almost resigned to her humdrum life until a man in a strange black get-up dropped onto her park bench. If he wasn’t gorgeous, and wounded, she might listen to her common sense and run. But curiosity and kindness have always been her weaknesses, and…

Amor Clandestino

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This is interesting. . .I didn't know I'd been translated into Portugese.

Araminta sabia que não seria vista com bons olhos nos círculos sociais que Griffin freqüentava. Ela não sabia como nem onde buscaria forças para recuar... mas jamais aceitaria menos do que o amor incondicional do homem por quem se apaixonara perdidamente!

What are those two doing snogging in the country? I think they never leave NY.

Anyone know how to search these pages for authors?
http://www.sybook.co.kr/
http://www.ast.ru
http://www.raamatukoi.ee

you'll have to BEG me next time

Ta da!
Well, I thought it was a fun idea, she grumbles.

And the entries I did get were pretty great, every one of them for once. But the thing about the winner is that she managed to get a sense of the subject in her story. Fiction, yes, but like all good fiction, containing that essense of Truth.

It's no use bellowing like that, Doug. MM is the winner.

MM-- email me (use the link at the top of the page) and tell me what size shoe you wear so I can send socks. I'll need a snail mail address too, but it's worth letting me know where you live, MM. I recently got an email from a woman who wants to drive two hours just to look at these socks, so we're not talking your ordinary footwear. I still owe some to Sam, too. Drat, I'm bad, bad, bad.

Anyway, due to low turn out, y'all will have to beg me to run another contest. Sniff, pout. I'm gonna take my ball--and socks--and go sulk at home.

first, SBD

Smart bitch? No, not at the moment. I'm too fuzzy brained for that label. BUT I do know a lot of them and I'll yammer about a few, 'k?

First--a whinge. Summer's 2nd book has its first review: 3.5 stars at ecataromance. Excuse me. I get 5's there. Absolutely. I pay good money for those stars. That's a joke, okay? I don't bribe reviewers. (hey, I haven't figured out the appropriate sum yet.) The real complaint I'd have would be as a reader browsing the site. The reviewers there don't describe what put them off the book. The star rating might say pleh, but the review is always positive. (As a writer, my favorite aspect of the site is that the reviews are always positive.**)

Okay, back to smart bitches. Smart fan bitches. There are the originals, of course, Sarah and Candy.

I belong to reading lists devoted to specific authors and some of the people writing messages on those lists are funnier and more clever than the original author. Yes, Georgette Hey…

my new year's resolutions

Only one:
Don't make any New Year's Resolutions.

I always break them**. See? I've already done it again this year, and even faster than usual.

At least last year I waited a hour before breaking into the bag of chocolate chips after making the one about "Cut Back On The Chocolate."

Tomorrow, I'll announce the winner of the $*&$## contest. You still have time to enter, ya scaredy cats.That's the reason, isn't it--fear. Not because no one visits my blog. Nuh uh. I know you're out there.

You're not entering because you haven't broken free of your fear of rejection.

Well, listen -- start small! LET ME GUIDE YOU ONTO THE ROAD TO SUCCESS!!
Enter my contest by 4 pm tomorrow and, with that small step in presenting your writing to the world, you'll gain the confidence to collect your rejection letters from editors and agents.

And once you finally do get that best-seller published, you can send me a copy inscribed "for Kate. I would never have m…