La Dolce Vita and Beyond

Those of you who follow this site regularly (both of you–hi, Mom!) might have noticed that I haven’t posted anything much here for a while. In fact, the last of my “weekly updates” was weeks ago. Let’s just say I’ve been busy.

I spent September 21 to 27 celebrating my sister Jody’s wedding (held here in Wisconsin) at a reception in Castellaneta, a small city in the arch of Italy’s boot. It was the first vacation I’ve taken since the summer before my wife Ann became pregnant with quadruplets at the end of 2001, and it was fantastic. I don’t have the time to say much about it right now, but it included great food and drink in belly-busting and liver-damaging quantities, swimming in the Ionian Sea, and stumbling through Matera (a UNESCO world heritage city and the location of the filming of The Passion of the Christ) until 5 AM, capped off with a whirlwind walking tour of Rome that wandered through the less prosperous quarter late one night. My new brother-in-law’s family treated us like royalty, and I really can’t wait to go back again. I can’t thank them enough, and it was a real thrill to meet all the people in Jody’s life.

After I got back, I had to finish up my revisions for Marked for Death, the first novel in my Eberron trilogy, and that occupied almost every waking moment until last Wednesday. Right now, I’m dealing with a few sick kids and a sick wife as I try to wrap up the Origins Awards Task Force work and get rolling on a half-dozen other projects. This includes two collectible card games, a bit of roleplaying game writing, outlines for four different novels, a pitch for another novel trilogy, and the first three chapters of a book about life with quadruplets and more. Whew! The life of a freelancer is never dull.