Christmas is coming. This will be our second holiday season in our new home in Tryon, so we know what to expect and look forward to it.

The Christmas Stroll happens this week when all the businesses in our tiny town open their doors one evening and people literally stroll from one to the next for a cup of punch or a cookie (or a glass of wine and some brie in the fancier places). Santa’s there as well as street musicians. It’s as quaint as you’d expect from a small town and rivaled only by our New Year’s Eve festivities where we drop a disco ball from the clock tower with a fishing pole at 10:00 because midnight is just too late for most folks. It’s such fun that we raise and drop it a couple more times for good measure.

Have I mentioned that I love it here?

By the way, I had an amazing experience at that writers’ conference in Raleigh last month. It was my first. I learned a lot, but the more I learn, the more I realize how little I know. It’s a fascinating business.

My weekend was filled with workshops, panel discussions, and open mics. I met so many interesting writers and editors and agents. It’s a whole new world for me and I’m soaking it up.

I got some great feedback about my novel (what I call my “book book”). And I got an amazing suggestion from an editor for another book, which of course, I loved and have already started working on. She saw me at an open mic reading a funny monologue I’d written for Meanwhile Back at Café DuMonde a while back and asked for more. One thing led to another and now I’m writing funny essays while I continue to edit my book book.

It’s too chilly to work on the front porch, so I’m in my office with a perfect view of our backyard. The birds flock to our little feeder right outside the window and the Chihuahuas flock to the heating vent at my feet.  

Happy holidays.