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Hi all,
 
Confession: sending these always makes me nervous. I worry they come across as spam, like some book-marketing bot is sending them, not a real human. I promise it’s always just me, Molly, writing every word of them; I have no bots and no personal marketing team.
 
But to make it less spammy, I’ve decided to make the email more personal this time—because I realized I like it when newsletter senders give us a glimpse into their personal side. Thus, here are some regular-life updates having nothing to do with my writing:
 
  • For spring break a few weeks ago, we went to the Olympic Peninsula here in Washington and rented a house in the woods not far from the town of Sequim. Our first evening there, a BIG BLACK BEAR wandered right past the house! We didn’t see any other bears during our time there, and didn’t have time to get a picture, alas. But we were excited to glimpse that one, at least. The bear is an auspicious sign, I’m thinking: coming out of hibernation and into the light, the way the human world is beginning to feel, cautiously and variously.
     
  • Speaking of which, I’ll get my second vaccine shot (Pfizer) on Monday. I tend toward health anxiety, and I have heard enough side effect horror stories, so please only send me positive reports about yours or your friends’. :) Regardless, I hope you’re feeling well today!
     
  • Our two kids are 15 and not quite 12, so we’re hoping for the 12-15 age group to be approved soon. Parents of kids younger than 12: I really, really feel for you. It’s already isolating, and a lot of work, to raise young kids even without a pandemic going on. It’s hard to know what’s safe with a new and still evolving virus, and everyone has different risk factors and comfort levels. Try to be patient and loving with each other out there: remember, this won’t last forever.
     
  • It’s spring, my favorite season, and my garden and everyone else’s are looking their best. But those flower seeds I was so excited about growing? I have new advice: DON’T DO THIS. Not unless you have tons of time and don’t mind a lot of frustration. Yes, it’s much cheaper to buy seeds than to buy established plants. But there is no guarantee that the seeds will grow up into plants. Of my seedlings that have survived to be higher than an inch tall, none have yet grown actual flower buds. And it’s already May. So. Next year, I’m saving my time and laying out a bit more money and buying plants at the nursery. Oh well. It was a learning experience. I share my failure with you so that I can serve as a helpful warning.
     
  • Because of my recent interest in Chinese shows like The Untamed, and because my younger kid is now taking a term of Chinese as part of the sixth-grade curriculum, I too am I learning a bit of Mandarin Chinese. I’m using apps (Duolingo and Hello Chinese) and occasional other online resources. From a native English background, it’s highly challenging—especially the writing system—but I’ve been pleased to find that some aspects of it are simpler than expected. For instance, Chinese doesn’t conjugate verbs! Compare that to the 24-or-so verb endings I’ve had to learn in Spanish, French, or Italian, and in that respect, Chinese is much easier. On the other hand, there are the tones… Anyway, I will not be fluent anytime soon, if ever, but I’m enjoying the experience of learning something so totally different from what I’m used to.
 
As for the writing side:
  • I never got fan art before for my books, but something about Lava Red Feather Blue has inspired people this year, and I am thrilled. This week, a popular Instagram artist popped up with adorable art of Merrick and Larkin: not one, not two, but three pieces! Someone being moved enough by your words to spend a long time meticulously drawing and coloring the characters is such a giant compliment. I’m humbled and delighted!
     
  • All the Better Part of Me in its ebook form will be going on sale for 99 cents, starting, I believe, next Tuesday. I’ll send an email next week, probably a much briefer one than this, to remind you.
 
I hope that was all less spamlike. Let me know if you found it preferable to the only-about-writing ones!
 
Have a lovely weekend, and do your best to be calm, kind, and happy.
 
Best,
Molly
 
 
 
Copyright © 2021 Central Avenue Publishing, All rights reserved.


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