. . . or how I spent my Saturday night. I can’t complain. I’d already been to a baby shower and a Kentucky Derby party (at which I won $50!) by the time this charming pic was taken by my photographer in residence. I am half in my jammies. The dog blanket is a mess. I’m on my second bottle of water. I’m listening to the beautiful soundtrack from Les Choristes. And having a good time! Truly. I’m going through the messy draft of my Work-in-Progress, working on the order of scenes (particularly looking at the best places to insert backstory), putting the dates of every scene into a calendar for ’06 (the year the story takes place), adding to my never-ending list of items needing further research, figuring out how old each character is in all the backstory pieces, etc. The zillion pieces of paper around me have the following headings: Research; Backtrack (this list is still very long, as I keep discovering ideas I want to plant earlier in the story, which is why I’ve never been one of those writers who can polish as she goes); What’s Missing?; Revelations; Dates (of birth, death and significant events); Slang (of the geographic area, of teens); and finally, a separate sheet for each character so I keep his or her looks, interests, and deepest, darkest feelings straight. Have I already told you I snitch pictures from Match.com for my characters? That seems slightly . . . I don’t know. . . creepy? Unethical? I hope not. It’s a great way to get Real Faces as opposed to those I used to cut out of magazines. Reading people’s Match.com profiles also helps me learn what, say, a thirty-year-old guy in a NC beach community might do for fun, or what kind of job a forty-year-old woman in the same community might have. John found it a bit worrisome that I was still checking out people on Match.com (where he and I met), until he realized what I was doing. I also snitch pictures of my characters’ houses from Realtors.com. Now you know all my dirty little writing secrets!