I have a few things to say this week. Let’s get the bad out of the way, first.
My hometown of Baton Rouge is experiencing a disaster that can best be described as “Biblical.” Intense rain from a tropical wave stalled out over the Florida Parishes and dropped an obscene amount of rain over the entire area. Over the past few days I’ve scrambled to get in contact with my father and my brother’s family in Baton Rouge, who have literally lost everything to the floods.
It’s an enormous area that’s been completely engulfed in flood waters. Happily, the death count is low…very low for an event of this magnitude. But the suffering is incalculable. The house I grew up in is underwater. Every neighborhood I bicycled through, played ball in, or took a bus through is flooded. The economy of the area may recover some day…
…and this whole event is triggering savage memories of Katrina. I’ve been through this before. The memories are still fresh, it seems. So it’s been a hell of a weekend for yours truly. If you have the means and the compunction, please consider extending a hand.
In happier news, my wife and I co-hosted a panel at the Hub City Teen Writer’s Conference in Hagerstown, MD. Our panel was titled “Mastering the Modern Myth: Elements of Folkore in Paranormal and Urban Fantasy.” I knew going in that this would be a great panel… but I had no idea exactly HOW FREAKING AWESOME it would turn out. We ran a gamut from Werewolves to Fairies to Vampires to Zombies… exploring their folkloric histories and how the implicit meanings have evolved during modern times, and what that means to our society today.
We had a great crowd of teens who soaked it in like a freakin’ sponge. It was a fantastic natural high! So, I extend my thanks to the coordinators for having us, and am eager to package this sucker up and do it again somewhere else very soon!
In other news, I’ll be joining my wife and a heaping handful of other talented authors TONIGHT in an online live broadcast. Come watch me blather away on Yea Though I Walk, and chat with me on the Facebook event page. I’ll pregame with just enough whiskey to keep myself cogent and entertaining.
(just kidding…I’ve already started)