Highlights From Afternoon Tea at Sawgrass

Many thanks to Susan Bridges, owner and operator of Sawgrass Bar, for another successful literary-fueled event! She hosted an afternoon tea with a vegan cuisine tasting last Saturday and man, was that spread fantastic.


I enjoyed a warm, honeyed white tea, a decaf version of a minty, spicy oolong, and the party rocker itself, a kava ginger peach smoothie. Kava has the same effect on me as a crippy hydroponic: muscle relaxing, tension relieving, ooo-la-la feeling from eyebrows to toes.


I read from I Blew Up Juarez, Chapter 21, where Johnny meets the surly, enigmatic Jossara Urestoguei (pron. urr-est-oh-gay). This was a fusion of two burgeoning concepts: how to get two women who fundamentally hate each other to get along, and, how to educate someone too affixed to the tangible about how time and space really works.

As I read the section aloud, I recognized my ex-publisher’s writing style (she had a nasty habit of re-writing segments without my approval), and my growing inner irritation ended up voiced into the work. So, if anyone noticed a sear of animosity during the reading, you’re pretty empathic! Congrats.
Next time, I’ll stick to the parts I know are my original, approved, compositions!

I feel her event was a great concept. We need more heroes like Susan in the Tampa Bay area; supporters of the arts as well as small business ventures!

Galleries credit: Susan Bridges, Sawgrass Bar. Friend and Like on Facebook for more event photos

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Time To Get Schooled on Science

Original Post Date August 07, 2013 at 12:02 PM

Von is back to work, and in study mode. The author describes what to look forward to in the next few months. Study group, anyone?

student_xingIt’s 1 AM.

I quietly unlock the front door, and softly lower my boogie bag to the ground. Before I even take another step, her voice whipcracks across the room.

“Where have you been? You were supposed to be home hours ago!” Her tone is set to Obnoxious Roommate.

“I know, I know. What can I say? It was an awesome vacay. Christmas in July, we called it. My crew is the model of efficiency when it comes to partying.”

“We’ve got work to do!”

“I know…”

“Scenarios have changed!”

“…I know…”

“My character arc has shifted! You have chapters to rewrite!”

“…I know, Johnny…”

“So get to work!”

I ignore her demands. “I’ll grab a bath, a good night’s sleep, and I’ll deal with you in the morning. Now….SHUT UP!”

I’ve been battling with my protagonist, Johnny Saucedo, ever since. In a good way, productive way. I’ve been able to articulate more clearly the whys without getting too expository, keeping the action heavy hitting, keeping the narration concise, up to The Main Event. And now we’re at the point where I have to introduce my theory. How a superspecies can come to us, manipulate us, but we remain unaware of them, thus assuming we’re alone in the Universe. Gotta approach this delicately, like baking a souffle. Gently fold in metaphysics, blend in quantum mechanics, and issue just the right amount of social philosophy, before setting it all in the oven to cook. Then, once it’s nice and fluffy and rested, slam it into the reader’s face!

It’s time to go back to school, a la Rodney Dangerfield. Fitting, seeing that Fall 2013 semester is about to kick off. As is college football. There’s a small window of opportunity for me to study concepts and collect relevant data before I get waaaay too distracted from Thursday to Sunday, every week, for the entire season. I know. Johnny’s gonna give me hell.

20130807_101524Thanks to my writing partner, I’m re-reading A Brief History of Time and soon after that, going to start on Quantum Mechanics. I completed a significant amount of philosophical studies in 2012, so I just have to re-visit my scribbles. Oh, this is gonna be quite the scientific project for the next few months.

And, because I’m a zealot, The Summer Reading Challenge is still on. Diamonds Are Forever was a better movie than the book, and if you remember the movie, then you know that ain’t sayin’ much! So on to From Russia With Love. Summer officially ends September 22 and I have nine more novels to complete. Like I said. Zealot.

Welp, good that I got the vacation in, because we’re navigating the Firefly towards the precarious unknown where Johnny lives. What wonderful adventures await!