So my kittens, I was making toffee a short time ago, which requires lots of butter heated on high for a long time, and you have to stir it constantly and watch it like a hawk or it’ll burn. But my cell phone rang, and God only knew where it was (my coat pocket, as it turns out—and the coat was, of course, nowhere NEAR the kitchen). I thought I had time to run for it, but the butter began to burn, so I darted back to the butter. I missed the phone call, but saved the batch of toffee. And as I did I thought, “Huh. I kind of I like the smell of burning butter.” And soon, because I end up turning everything into a song—I really can’t help it—I started singing “The SMELL of burning but-ter…” to the tune of that (hilarious and prurient) old song by the Bay Area’s own The Tubes:
The smell of burning leather
As we hold each other tight
As our rivets rub together flashing sparks into the night
At this moment of surrender, darling, if you really care
Don’t touch me there!
“Don’t Touch me There,” is, of course, about the least Christmas-y song there is. But now it’s absolutely stuck in my head, and I’m trying desperately to dislodge it by listening to Johnny Mathis sung backed by a sort of celestial chorus. He’s singing about “raindrops on roses and whiskers on kid-dens.” I passionately love Johnny Mathis, especially at Christmas. He has the most aggressive enunciation of just about any singer I can think of.
To make up for the fact that I very likely got “Don’t Touch Me There” stuck in your head, here’s one of my top favorite Christmas songs. Vince Guaraldi is another San Francisco native, and all of his music is shot through with a sort of irresistible wistfulness. This song is beautiful, and I’m sure you’ve heard it three million times already this year, but click on these words and here it is.
Ah. Do we feel cleaner now?? LOL.
Are you going nuts, darlings, getting ready for the holidays? I’m writing (and writing and writing and writing), planning POP promotions, answering emails, baking, wrapping, attempting to coordinate holiday get-togethers, and trying to prevent my cat from printing endless test pages on my printer by planting his big furry orange butt on the test page button. I found five test pages yesterday, and solved the mystery today. I think the printer must be warm, hence its appeal. Also, it annoys me, which appeals to my cat, becuase he finds it hilarious when I'm annoyed.
Have I mentioned that I’ve seen my cover for The Dangers of Desire?? Do you remember the hyperbole I launched into when I saw the POP cover? Well, the DOD cover…I mean...holy cow. LOL. There are no words. Wait, maybe there are a few words: It’s incredibly beautiful. Soft and unbelievably sensual in warm reds and golds. A work of art. My heart about stopped. I’ll share it in due time -- when it's final. :) But I’m feeling really blessed, I’ll tell you that much. And I’m absolutely loving DOD, the story, too. I think the cover really, really fits it.
I feel blessed across the board right now: in covers, in my great publisher and editor and all talented staff at Avon, in my lovely agent and his great staff, in my wonderful friends and readers, in my fat orange cat. I'm thinking about you guys right now, and hoping your holiday is relaxing, safe, satiating, and occasionally hilarious. :) Wish me luck with the next batch of toffee. xo...julie