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Ah, sweet Saturday. I love how the bedroom is filled with morning light when I awake (not that pre-dawn darkness of the weekdays)…how there’s no set agenda (at least, not today)…how I can shuffle around in dingy slippers and my pajamas for as many hours as I like…and, if there are things to do, there are plenty of hours stretching ahead in which to do them.

The evening with the Keys was delightful: A wet winding road climbing amidst redwood trees and autumn darkness. A slick porch, a wood stove, a brown-eyed dog named, Tobasco. Picturesque pozole piled with avocado, cabbage, and crema followed by key lime pie topped with fresh whipped cream. Red wine, sparkling wine, hot toddies. Debates on the definition & evolution of hippies…on the teaching styles of past professors…on the roots and effects of Catholicism. And five bags aligned on a table, plucked away, one by one with a hug & good-bye.

One of the Keys stayed over in the “blue room” (my creative corner of the house…and a spare bedroom), rather than making the two hour drive back home late last night. She’s a dear friend and it was great to have her company this morning, talking about upcoming vacations, what so-and-so said, and mostly how to deal with our current writing challenges…all over way too many cups of coffee. She’s now on her way home and I’m sitting at my desk in the blue room. Thanks to our discussion, I almost feel like attacking my novel and forcing it into submission…no, it is not a loving relationship right now.

Blue room

Tonight at a local bookstore there is a reading by Kelli Stanley from her new book, City of Ghosts, the third in her Miranda Corbie series. The setting for her noir-style novels is 1930’s and 40’s San Francisco, and her heroine, Miranda Corbie, is a “thirty-three-year-old private investigator, Spanish Civil War nurse and ex-escort”…and that’s just the beginning of what’s compelling about Stanley’s writing. I briefly met her and had a sit-down meeting with her agent at last year’s Mystery Writers’ Conference. I really should go this evening…but the minute I say “I should” do anything, I balk. I’m also learning, since I started this blog, that Saturdays are my sanctuary days. I need safety from my notorious shoulds, self-judgement and guilt…even if just one day of the week.

So, if I get dressed and make it to the reading tonight, great. If I never dressed, use up on all the coffee beans in the house, and watch movies all day, that’ll be great too. Because sweet Saturday is sanctuary.

If you want the grit of San Francisco and a fantastic noir female detective, check out all of Kelli Stanley’s books at her website:


And if you’re a mystery writer, the Mystery Writers’ Conference at Book Passage in Corte Madera is a must: