Welcome Gentle Readers

This blog tends to wander from its main purpose -- updates on my fiction. I do have updates and excerpts of my work. But I also write about my obsessions -- food, friends and pop culture and my weird life in Los Angeles. Enjoy!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Frenzies, Pirate Vampires and More Countdowns

What's Cooking

The cooking frenzy I had hoped to 
have happened pretty much all week long. I didn't think it would last that long, but I kept having to stop and rest between dishes. Strangely, the most exciting thing I cooked this week was completely unexpected. Whilst picking up some herbs and veggies for the soup stock, I found actual green tomatoes in my supermarket. I have never seen those on the west coast before. Frankly, I think I've only run across them when we were in Georgia visiting relatives. Dad liked to cut them up and put them into collard greens. I prefer them cooked. Thus, I pounced upon them to make myself a batch of fried green tomatoes. Actually, I pounced on them early in the week, but didn't make that dish until yesterday. My appetite was off most of the week. I didn't want to cook them until I knew I was going to eat them. They were well worth the wait. Meanwhile, the rest of the frenzy consisted of making dishes like chicken pot pies, Brian Boitano's calzone style beef Wellingtons., and a couple of pasta dishes. All of the recipes lend themselves to single serving portions and all were freezeable. After I make a couple of soups, I'll be well prepared for times during chemo when I don't feel up to cooking. It was a good week. I really needed the cooking therapy and I turned out some really good food.

Year of Fun – Adam and The LA Farmer's Market

This week was difficult physically. Most of my plans were thwarted by my uncooperative body. However, I did manage to keep an appointment that was very important to me. That was a meeting with a former Borders #93 peep and fellow writer, Adam. I was surprised and pleased when he found me on Linkedin  a couple of weeks ago. The last I'd seen him, he was bound for a return trip to Amsterdam with ambitions to enjoy all it had to offer. My fellow Borders peeps agreed with my assessment that he might never come back from the smokey haze. Imagine my surprise to find he has a serious gig at the Writer's Guild of America. Strangely, as we began to interact via e-mail, I realized that I knew his e-mail address from the event Jon and I attended to see Ron Moore's talk on Battlestar Galactica (highpoint of my Month of Fun from last year). I didn't recognize his last name. But then, we never used them at Borders. Adam had always been among my favorite co-workers. He has a surfer-dude mellow to the point of catatonic verve, but he was always the smartest person there when it came to fiction and lit. Oh, and he's gorgeous. None of that has changed over the years save for allowing his smarts to show more now. I was also delighted to discover that he is a wine connoisseur – he even has a webiste to advise the uncertain, and he's a foodie! We had one of those rare and wonderful conversations about writing and food and wine that make LA magical for me. And I now have a new connection with a much missed friend. We plan to cook together sometime this fall.

As if that weren't enough to make the trip to mid-town worthwhile, there was the Los Angeles Farmer's Market. I was in search of ingredients for premium chicken stock. I'm talking backs and feet, kiddos. The feet being weird on a roasting pan and in the pot, but this stock is all unctuous and jiggly without being reduced, so I've got a vat and a half of it. Ah, there will be some soups made for the frozen larder this week! And then there was the applewood smoked bacon from Huntington Meats. Maddeningly good. I also found a shop that I'd never seen before. Mr. Marcel's Pan et Fromage is a terribly dangerous place for me. It has too many imported French products that I would love to use in my cooking. The only reason I escaped the diabolical establishment with most of my money was that I couldn't carry all that I wanted to purchase. My bearer, aka Jon, wasn't on this trip. So my purse was safe – for now. I did buy some lovely country pate and a freshly baked batard. Pure happiness.

Countdown T Minus 13 Days

We've been tweaking the look of DraggonTV.com. It is a very handsome site. I will sing the praises of those involved when we launch. Suffice it to say, a great deal of the talent is in Ohio. We'll be uploading the initial videos this week to work out the bugs. The Demon Under Glass Interviews are being edited. A few more will be shot this week, I hope. Meanwhile, we prep for the photo shoot. Years ago, when everything was wrapped for Demon Under Glass, we auctioned most of the costumes and props. Foolishly, we thought that once a film was done, you move on. Since then, I've learned better. We hang onto everything we can store, because we never know when a re-shoot will come up or a publicity shoot. Thus, we need to re-outfit Doctor McKay down to his Caduceus. Most of that load is handled by Lucy Doty's medical wardrobe supply at her wondrous Central City Studio. That leaves clothing the Vampire. There are plenty of casual clothes that make what he already has look good, I wanted something additional to show that he was from another time. Thus, Jon and I found ourselves in a local costume house looking at the frock coats and cravats of a Victorian gentleman. I had considered an 18th Century pirate look. Then, I had to discard the notion, and not just because Jon quipped that my first choice is usually pirate wear. I admit that the pirate look is always among my choices, it isn't always the first choice. The pirate image is a very strong one in pop culture. The term pirate would come before vampire. Simon is not a pirate vampire. It would be a very impractical thing for a vampire to be a pirate. To be a successful pirate, one would have to be able to raid at anytime of the day or night. And it would be hard for a pirate to work in the close confines of a pirate ship without anyone noticing the not coming out during the day. Being from a time of great superstition, most pirates would have dumped a vampire into the drink. Likewise, I didn't think a cowboy outfit would work either. There's the monicker of a cowboy vampire – not good at all. And, again, there is too much in the way of unsheltered open expanse. I think Vampires would have been city dwellers until the west had better transportation and more population and buildings. But I'm rambling At any rate, the Victorian gentleman looks the most like a Vampire to me, and the actor looks good in that type of clothing. We did find something that looked cool – though Jon wouldn't go for the cape – and will fit the actor. Everything is coming together. I just hope that the Caduceus I ordered from Ebay arrives on time. All I have to do now is a shot list to make sure I get the type of photos I need. I will post one or two pics next weekend, but the rest won't go up until DraggonTV.com goes live.

On the web series front, I've been slogging through the scheduling program. It's a new one for us and quite comprehensive once all of the data is entered. That is just a long and tedious process. I should be finished by the time of the photo shoot. Then I have to deal with getting a go ahead from the various guilds before we cast the rest of the parts. This is all very dull though necessary.

Book Update

I'm working my way through the first draft of A Solder's Destiny at an acceptable pace. I'll likely post another excerpt with the next blog.

Stay Tuned!


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