Wolf Bound Update and Reflections on Winter

I finished the book a couple days ago and sent it on to my lovely betas. This week, I’ll be making corrections and additions, and then it will go to AJ for a final read-through. He always reads my manuscripts before publication; it wouldn’t feel “done” without his input.

So look for it in a couple or three weeks, hopefully by the end of May. Publication will be announced here and at the usual social media sites.

What’s up next? A story I started and then set aside when winter in St Paul made me lose interest. You may ask how weather can do that, but if you’ve ever lived through a long, cold winter (polar vortex, anyone?), you’d understand that it saps your energy and sometimes your will to live. Doing the simplest things is difficult.

Need to run down to the store for butter? First you bundle up: coat, hat, gloves, boots, scarf. Maybe a second pair of socks. Then you slip and slide down the stairs and along the sidewalk to the parking lot, where you scrape snow and ice off the car. If the plow has done a shitty job of it, you also have to shovel enough so you can get out without getting stuck. Everyone keeps a shovel in the trunk of their car if they live in such a climate. It sits next to the jumper cables you also own. You sit inside with the engine running until it warms up a little and the defroster clears the windows so you can see. This can take ten minutes or more, depending on external conditions.

Finally, you are ready for your “quick trip,” and you drive to the store on slick or snow-covered roads, gripping the steering wheel with tight fingers, hoping no idiots are sharing the road with you right now–you know, the ones with 4WD who think they can travel at normal speed and anyone going slower needs to be tail-gated–and you park at the store and trudge inside, trying to shield exposed flesh from a wind chill of -40.

The store is warm, so in moments, all that winter gear you put on starts making you sweat like a pig while you march to the back of the store for your butter (they never put it up front; they want you to see all the wonderful things you can buy while you pick up your basics) and you start to feel like you weigh three hundred pounds, but you dare not unbutton the coat or take off stuff because 1) you’ll lose something, and 2) you’re going back out into that deep freeze in a few minutes.

Butter in a bag, you gird your loins and leave the store. In those few minutes, the car has gotten cold, and if it’s snowing, you’ll have to brush it off before hitting the road.

The return journey is just as fraught with danger, and by the time you get home and strip off all the winter gear, you swear you’ll give up butter before doing that again any time soon.

That was winter in St Paul.

Winter in Florida: slip on a pair of flip-flops, get in the car, drive.


I was at R’s last night for Game of Thrones and the first episode of Penny Dreadful. Not sure yet what I think of the latter, but it started with a bloody bang. I left after eleven. I was wearing shorts and a T-shirt. I drove home with the windows down.

Oh yes, I am loving living here. I really am!


About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter, Google +, and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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27 Responses to Wolf Bound Update and Reflections on Winter

  1. Helle says:

    Good for you 🙂

  2. Brandilyn says:

    Welcome to The South, sweetie. Where shorts and flip-flops are year-round attire, and you don’t understand the need people have to constantly carry around hoodies and sweaters. I don’t think I could handle a northern winter, even a mild one, again. I lived through 3.5 and that was more than enough for me.

    • I’ve lived through more years of that shit than I care to remember. Grew up in it, stayed in it except for a brief time after high school… um, no more! I enjoy wearing minimal clothing and waking up to the same old boring sunny weather every day.

      • Brandilyn says:

        I am exactly the opposite. Lived in Texas all but about 3.5 years of my life, and that was only as far north as DC (I still remember my hair freezing on the walk from my car to the building for work… no thanks). I spent 4 years in central-ish Texas during undergrad, but other than that it has been spent south of I-10.

        • It always amazes me how seldom families will leave the area where they were born. I couldn’t wait to take a look around. I’ve been all over the country except the east and far west corridors. It’s so much fun to travel and talk to people, see new things.

          • Brandilyn says:

            On one hand I hate being so close to where I grew up, on another, now that I have kids, I like that the family is close. That being said, my sister moved her family to Seattle a year ago and, as you know, I am itching to move over seas. My husband, however is content where we are. *shrug*. Now traveling I live to do. I have visited so many places in the US and want to travel out of the country as well. That will, likely, have to wait until the kids are older, though.

          • Travel broadens the mind. I believe that to be true. It allows you to see the similarities between all of us, no matter where we live or what language we speak, as it points out the differences. Inevitably, everywhere I went, people were helpful and friendly.

  3. Patricia says:

    Theo, you’ve made me appreciate my Florida weather with your chilling Drive for Butter tale. I really am curious about “Wolf Bound.”

  4. Helena Stone says:

    Reading how happy you are in Florida is making ME giddy. Of course I don’t get the extreme temperatures thing at all. Here in Ireland any day over 77 is deemed a heatwave and the coldest I’ve ever experienced (in Holland) was -3 or there abouts and that’s more than cold enough for me.
    I’m delighted to hear we, the readers, will be benefiting from your move as much as you have. Can’t wait for ‘Wolf Bound’ and any subsequent book.

    • MN is considered a temperate weather region. I beg to differ. Any state that can go from 92 in summer to -30 in winter is not what I consider temperate. The extremes are really… extreme.

      I suspect I will set more books in Florida in future. And how much do you wanna bet MN shows up once in a while? The Blue Paradise is set in Florida but the MC comes from MN. He remarks about the winter there.

      In my YA book, still in process, the MC also comes from MN but lives in Florida.

      I think I see a trend here. 🙂

  5. Jaycee Edward says:

    This totally made me howl. It’s SO true! Only I beg to differ about the 4WD people. I LOVE to drive on treacherous roads and I’m good at it. I think it’s fun. If I’m alone. When there’s traffic, I’m extra careful but there is always some idiot in a car that thinks he has better control than I do in my 4WD and rides my ass.

  6. valjo44 says:

    The “Butter Tale” is definitely a lot funnier now you live in Florida. It would have made me laugh even if you were still stuck in the snow but I would have felt guilty about it :)!

  7. Allison says:

    The idea that I’d never have to *get ready* to take the dogs out is a wonderful one. The sheer volume of time spent on planning and accomplishing simple tasks when the weather is like that makes me miss Atlanta. I don’t think I could ever live in Florida though, humidity and I are not friends. Ha. 😀

    It is wonderful how happy and more relaxed you are. It makes me smile every time you share that with us.

    • I’m definitely loving it. Weather has such an impact on most people, including me. I love seeing the sun every day, and on those rare cloudy days, it’s soothing to the eye. The sun here is harsh. I don’t mind, but a break now and again is welcome.

  8. You are SO making me want to be in Florida! It’s even hot-ish here now (southern Ohio) but FL still sounds so much better. Palm trees & that salty ocean breeze, mmm . . . I want to watch Penny Dreadful too, recorded haven’t had time to watch it yet – I’m looking forward to it. Looking forward to Wolf Bound too 🙂

    • I still don’t know what to think of Penny Dreadful. Often, it seemed to shock for the purpose of shocking. There was a lot of blood and gore. I did like Josh Hartnet; that boy grew up to be one handsome man.

  9. diannegray says:

    I totally understand the difference, Theo – going from a cold climate to a warm one is fantastic! 😀

  10. A.M.B. says:

    Thanks for making us all jealous about your new climate! Enjoy it! Good luck with Wolf Bound.

  11. Carole says:

    I took a walk around the neighborhood last night with the dogs & it was a beautiful breezy 84 degrees out as the sun was setting. Perfect!
    So so glad you are enjoying yourself & that you are all settled in. Seem to be starting somewhat of a routine also. Really nice!!! Couldn’t be happier for you. The creative juices will flow freely now that your brain is not constantly frozen.

  12. Jinai says:

    Florida seems so good for you. I am glad that this move is proving to be very positive. I remember the cities when you barely had room to drive down the street as the snow and parked cars were crowding the road. There were always the adventurous kids that would try and grab your bumper and go for a ride AND the snow would turn gray-black from ??? exhaust? Me, I am just looking forward to hearing about your MC’s from MN. 🙂

    • Winter in the city is ugly. In movies it always looks so nice, but the reality is the snow is dirty. And then there’s the slush. Now that I don’t live there anymore, I can go back to thinking it’s pretty.

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