Chaos Attraction

Sue Grafton

2015-08-28, 11:10 p.m.

I left work an hour early to haul ass down to the Bay Area to go to a Sue Grafton book signing of the new book in the series, X. Despite the leaving an hour early thing, I still ended up leaving right before 5 p.m.--had to pack stuff, get gas, blah blah.
Now, I don't live in the direction that gets all that much traffic on weekends. It's usually terrible hauling up 80* on Fridays and slightly less bad going down on Sundays and I am usually doing the opposite, laughing at the traffic jams on the other side.

• Fun sport at this time of the year while driving up 80: Spot The Burners. Any car with a lot of bikes on it, especially fuzzy bikes or fuzzy furniture, anyone in a camper/motorhome/has a giant trailer.

It takes an hour 20 or so to get to the town the signing was in from where I'm at, so I reasonably assumed I'd arrive early because my side pretty much never has problems even on holiday weekends. So naturally the one time I need to be over there by seven, there's a fire on the freeway (in the plants in the freeway divide) on 80 and then several random slowdowns for no reason on 680. My GPS told me it was going to be over 2 hours when I turned it on, and it just kept getting longer and longer. WTF? But at any rate, i still got there and found parking by 6:35, so BOOYAH FUCK THAT.

Anyhoo, Sue Grafton was lovely and funny and snarky and into answering “dumb questions.” For the record: she has no set plans as to what she'll do when the alphabet books are done, she'll see what mental/physical shape she's in first and doesn't want to keep writing once she goes downhill, but she might just do standalones. The series was inspired by when she was wishing she could kill one of her ex-husbands. Kinsey is pretty much a younger version of her. Neither Kinsey nor the Pitts family will die before the end of the series. She has no idea how it's going to end otherwise or if Kinsey will ever end up with any guy—the character has a mind of her own and Sue just chronicles it all. X was going to be for Xenophobe and then she didn't write any foreign characters into it, so she threw out that idea and broke her own rule. One lady there's husband was all, “My wife wrote a novel but nobody's publishing it” and Sue said to move on from that one and go work on the next.

We had brief chats with her—I basically said I liked the books and it was cool to meet someone with the same birthday because I hardly ever do. Mom was all, “She does NaNoWriMo every year” and I was all, well, I still haven't written a good one yet.

They also had peanut butter and pickle (she recommends “bread and butter” pickles) there to eat and uh...this was surprisingly pretty good and I think I ate like six of them. Since Mom had already purchased the book, I bought Felicia Day's memoir and got a free ARC, “Not if I See You First,” which was amazing. (Read X and the ARC over the weekend, reviews to come.) Mom had a friend come along and we hung out with her for awhile, then the friend went home and we had dinner.

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