August 18th, 2006

chi4

Something strange and beautiful in the trees.

On the 13th (last Sunday) we were walking beneath the old apple trees behind the cottage, and I happened to spot a spectacularly large caterpillar on one of the branches. It was at least 3 inches long, a bit larger than my thumb. A quick glance at the appropriate Peterson field guide identified it as belonging to the Cecropia moth (Hyalophora cecropia), one of the largest species of North American moths. Spooky got some photos (behind the cut):

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chi6

A Writing Post

As things wind down, I'm having to force my mind back to writing — to writing and the busyness of writing. This has hardly been a vacation. But then I never meant for it to be a vacation, precisely. I intended to spend at least half my time in Rhode Island writing and much of it finding things to write about. It just didn't work out that way. Too many distractions, too much incoming chaos, the absence of my usual surroundings...a lot of factors. I also didn't get nearly as much exercise as I'd hoped to get, and I somehow managed to frelling gain weight when I'd intended to lose a little. I blame the chowder. And the doughboys. And Penguin, because stress makes me eat. And I blame myself, for having no willpower whatsoever.

Our house-sitter called this morning to say that the page proofs/galleys for Daughter of Hounds had arrived in Atlanta. They are now waiting for me in my office. They have to be back in NYC by September 7th.

I also just sold the Czech foreign-language rights for "Riding the White Bull," which is pretty frelling drad.

It seemed I had a whole lot else to say when I started this entry, but my mind keeps wandering. My thoughts have drifted, like grinding tectonic plates. Ah, well. I suppose that's what the next entry's for.

Postscript: I also didn't get half as much reading done as I'd meant to do. But I did make it all the way through Stone by Stone: The Magnificent History of New England's Stone Walls by Robert M. Thorson (Walker & Co.; 2002), which really was very good, I thought. The book was made all the more enjoyable by the fact that I've had access to several very old stone walls here behind the cottage, convenient visual aids.