Wednesday, September 27, 2017

A Walk on the Beach and a Release Day

I had lunch with my marketing consultant today, and decided it would be a good day to treat myself to a much delayed walk on the beach after lunch.

I had several successes to celebrate:

Since today is release day, I'll share a bit more about Water into Wine. It is a sci-fi novella set on a distant planet, but I think you should check it out even if you don't read sci-fi often, because it has such interesting characters. 

One of the things I love about the book (and the other books I've read by Joyce) is the way it takes her culture and imagines it into the future. This is a pretty standard thing for sci-fi to do, but so often, sci-fi only takes white European culture and imagines it into the future. Chng takes her Straits Chinese culture and imagines it forward, which opens up new possibilities. I love reading science fiction from people writing from other cultures, because I think it expands my ideas about what the future might be.

But leaving all that aside, what this book is at its core is a story about a family trying to make a life for themselves amidst chaotic external circumstances they cannot control. It is probably obvious why that resonated with me right now! In Water into Wine, these circumstances are an interstellar war, and a real strength of the book is portraying ordinary people trying to just live their lives during a war.

If any of that intrigues you, please grab a copy of the book today. All the purchase links are on the book's webpage. You can also find links to it in Overdrive, so if you can't afford the book and still want to read it, consider asking your librarian about it. 

So, that's what I was celebrating. It was a nice walk on the beach. The weather was perfect. The shells weren't so great, though. I had a pretty small haul:

The shells were small today, including the sand dollar. It is roughly the size of my thumbnail.

However, right about at my turnaround point, I got a huge treat. First a flock of pelicans flew by. And then, while I was watching them, I saw dolphins out past the break! I watched them for quite awhile, since they essentially kept pace with me as I walked back towards my starting point.

There were dolphins at the second break line right before I took the picture!
After I lost sight of the dolphins, a lone pelican flew past quite close to shore, and I saw one of these guys:

I think the wildlife sightings more than make up for my small shell haul! 

Even without the cool wildlife, the walk would have been well worth it. I always feel the screwed up muscle in my right shoulder/neck start to relax a bit more when I'm walking on the beach. Walking also helps me work through ideas and decisions. While my celebratory walks on the beach really are about celebrating (you can read about the first one and see my logic), they are also a great way for me to make the space I need to think about my business strategy and plans at a higher level than "here's what I need to do in the next few weeks." 

So, happy book birthday, Water into Wine! And happy beach walk day to me.

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