Douglas Arvidson is a past winner of the WICE/Paris Transcontinental International Short Story competition. His short fiction has been published in Paris, Prague, and in literary magazines in the United States and he was recently invited to be a staff writer for the Prague Revue, a cutting-edge, online literary journal ( The novels in his fantasy series, The Eye of the Eye of Stallion, include The Face in Amber, The Mirrors of Castaway Time, and A Drop of Wizard's Blood. His new novel, Brothers of the Fire Star, was selected as a finalist in the ForeWord Reviews 2012 Book of the Year national awards and as a finalist in three categories in the 2013 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards: Action Adventure Fiction, Historical Fiction, and Young Adult Fiction. It has become part of the pantheon of Pacific literature and is now included in school literature programs. Brothers of the Fire Star is an adventure story set in the Pacific during World War II and concerns two boys of different races and cultures who escape the island of Guam in a small sailboat when the Japanese army invades. They must then struggle to survive as they master the secrets of the ancient Pacific navigators. Appropriate for young adults as well as adult readers, Brothers of the Fire Star is available on Barnes & Noble, ( and Visit the author's website:

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Writer Back Home: Dark Rain, Green Grass, A Wet Old Cat

Blessed rain. Profound rain. Wet-cat rain.

I come back to this: wet and lush where once was brown, dessicated crab grass and thirsty birds. After two weeks in the eye-searing, brilliant-white, tropical light of the Florida Keys, this morning's sodden Virginia is a balm to the eyes and soul. At Noon, the sky is dark and hounded by thunder, the rain heavy and pounding, the world outside happily drenched after so many months of drought. I leave the door open so I can hear the wet happen.

My intentions for this day were good. I was going to take a break from writing and get cracking on scraping and painting the garage (I feel vaguely guilty. Terry has painted half of the inside of the house already). Can't do that now. I was going to pay a conjugal visit to my masted mistress, the lovely sloop, Seawind. Better stay away from her with all the lightening around. I was going to get a haircut. Think I'll put that off. No one who matters will see this old head today.

So, what then, to do with a rain day? When I was teaching, on such a day as this, the principal would announce a "rainy day recess." It meant kids stayed in their classrooms instead of going out to play. The teachers would groan and roll their eyes while the kids started climbing the walls. But I'm retired from all that and have better things to do. I think I'll play some music (Speaking of conjugal visits, I haven't touched my Martin guitar in two weeks. In the Keys I was playing a Yamaha classical).

And now, I'm going to get back to the re-write. Moody, dark, and damp are good for writing.  As for the wet cat, his timing could be better. He doesn't decide to come bounding into the house through the cat door until he has gotten doused. I spoke to him about it but he's twenty-one years old and too old to learn new tricks. Then again, maybe there's a certain wisdom in letting the rain get you wet once in a while.

1 comment:

  1. I like rainy days. They are great for taking photos in the garden or during a road trip when I find abandoned farmhouses.