Consider the month of February. It is an odd and joyous month. Christmas is over but bills still trickle in. The New Year already feels a little worn. Odd.
Spring is just around the corner and summer is on the horizon. Joyous.
February is the month of odd days. How many? 29? 27? 21? Where’s the rhyme when I need it?
My last few books came out in February. Odd or joyous, who can say?
My husband and oldest son are Aquarius types. Their birthdates are the 8th and 9th days of February. Twenty-three years ago my husband, in the hopes of having my son born on the same day as he was, fed me a spicy burrito. It brought on labor, just not fast enough. Oddly joyous?
The point is that things that make us happiest, things we remember, are always a bit odd and a bit joyous.
There is an author I admire. His name is Richard Jordan and he writes a mystery series about old Hollywood and a wonderful woman named Polly Pepper. His latest novel, FINAL CURTAIN, is a Polly party. A veritable gala of memorable characterization.
Polly is such a delight because Richard adores the charmingly odd lady. Every word he writes about this woman is joyous. From her ever-present champagne to the disappointing revival of an acting career that embroils her in a murder investigation (a director is clubbed to death with an Emmy), Polly is Polly. Odd, joyous, charming, challenging. She is a readerâ€™s delight; she is a character-in-waiting for some smart and talented actress. Rita Wilson, are you listening?
Just like February, FINAL CURTAIN ends too quickly. And, as February flies by me, faster than I care to admit, I am beginning a new project. As I do so I will be inspired by the odd month of February, by Richard Jordan and his joyful Polly and I will write with abandon. I will let my imagination spread its wings and will not allow the rules and agent warnings and ever-changing market forces to clip them.
That will be oddly, joyously, fabulously satisfying. This will be writing as it should be.