Lockdown: My excerpt opinion

I wrote about Thursday this morning, so if you’re a completist keep reading after this entry, or skip to that one before this. I know how particular you can be.

Friday I had a super light schedule. I actually had nothing on the calendar, and nothing needing my immediate attention, so I worked on a couple of stories. A donor story about a chocolate farm and a donor story about Hawaiian archaeology.

After work I watched the news and just chilled. It was a long, busy week, and I had time to breathe for the first time. I didn’t have any work due early next week, so I could probably take the entire weekend just to relax. I spun the new AC/DC album about six times — it was quite good, probably the best album they’ve recorded since the 80s.

I was ready to crank when we had our NaNo Skype session. The energy wasn’t very high; I think people were really tired. But I banged away on the keys while they chatted, and got 2130 words, putting me back on pace.

Of course most of what I’m writing is garbage, but underneath and amid the garbage are some good story ideas. I think with a lot of work, I can turn this into quite the readable cozy mystery. This month, I’m just going where it takes me and see what else I come up with.

Here’s a little excerpt of Friday night’s writing. You’ll see it has a little bit of rhythm and flow but lacks narrative and could really be trimmed to about half this length.


“Stacie, I feel stupid bringing this up, but you do know about the bookmaking, right?”

“What do you mean?  In the art classes?”

“No that’s bookbinding.  I’m talking about Martin.  He was kind of a wannabe bookie for a little while.”

“He took bets?”

“Yeah.  Nothing big time, just friendly wagers.  But a lot of friendly wagers among the faculty.”

“Did you make bets?”

“Yes, I placed bets almost every week during football season.  Little ones, like twenty five bucks here and there.  Never more than a hundred bucks a week.”

This was definitely it.  It had to be.  People were always getting murdered over gambling wages.  It’s why Hawaii is one of only two states in the nation with no form of legalized gambling at all, a fact many residents were frustrated wtih.  People like to gamble, and as long as they’re playing with their own money, why should anyone care?  I admitted I mostly agreed.

That government which governs best governs least, and all that.

“Graham, don’t you think this has to be it?  Martin was killed because he was a bookkeeper?”

“Bookmaker.  And no.  He quit doing it years ago.”

“Why?”

“He was doing it to make a few extra bucks, and because he loved gambling on sports.  I think he was using his winnings from taking our bets, and making his own.  But he said he gave it up becaue it was taking the enjoyment out of sports for him.”

“GRAHAM!!  This has to be it!  He was taking bets on campus.  He was making bets with someone else.  Somehow things got messy, Martin backed off, and someone killed him.”

“Years later?”

“Maybe someone had a grudge!”

“I guess.”


Breakfast. I drove down to Pancakes and Waffles for a Denver omelette and a mochi waffle, late in the morning. Breakfast and lunch, I should say. For dinner I used up the remainder of the elbow macaroni I bought for the Portuguese bean soup and threw some canned sauce on it, with dried garlic flakes, vodka, brown sugar, and red pepper flakes. It simple but yummy.

Crush Girl and I traded texts through most of the day about swimming, takeout, movies, and our Thanksgiving plans. Vicky texted me a happy Friday message. Reid texted me some info I requested about the pool hours at the park he directs.

That was it. An uncomplicated, mellow Friday. I need more days like this.

If you need someone to connect with, these pandemic days are likely to get crazier. So don’t go through it alone. Leave a comment and I’ll send you some contact info.

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