The Midds is going into its fifth printing. Fifth! I am very excited by every last piece of good news related to this book. It never stops thrilling and amazing me, especially considering the history. My scrappy little book that could. I wonder sometimes if this will be my favorite book in my life. I hope not. I hope I have more good books left in me to write. I hope a few more favorites to come.
And so I spent the last week doing good solid research for the new book, more on top the reading and thinking I have already done off and on over the past nine months. I read Amusing the Million, and watched a documentary or two. Now I’m reading Luc Sante’s Low Life, which Rosie recommended to me, and it’s perfect, so well-written and engaging and chock full of details. Whether I choose to use those details or not is another questions, but it is nice to know the information. While I have felt like I have known this character emotionally for a long time, I have never quite felt like I was in the room with her physically. I am starting to get closer to that point.
After consuming all of it, I have been finding it difficult to walk the streets of the city in the same way as I have before. I keep seeing what was once there, or wanting to see it anyway. I focus on what remains of the architecture of the past. I imagine it will be the same as when I am old and I look in the mirror, expecting my younger self. It already feels that way at the age of 41. There are mornings I wake up and wonder how I got to this place, even though I feel more like myself than ever. I try not to look too closely. I prefer denial. Nothing angers a woman in her forties more than bad lighting in a public restroom. The shock of the real.
I’m going to LA tomorrow to do a few readings and meetings and also some book club events, which I’ve not done before, except for one Skype session with nice women holding wine glasses. My plan is to shore myself up for the winter with some Vitamin D, finish reading Low Life, and when I return, start to write at last. I think I will have enough in my head by then. How do you know when it’s enough? I don’t know. Honestly, I could read for years and years, but I just prefer to write because I like making shit up. So I am filling my notebooks, I am looking at the photos of the old days. Ladies in proper hats. Elevated trains on the streets of Manhattan. Drunks on the Bowery. I am plump with information. I hope I am ripe.