Skip to main content

Writing Exercise #2 for Setting as Character

Today I tromped all over San Francisco to collect sensory details, photos (and a snack or two) from each of the neighborhoods that my novel's characters live in.  Now, they are not real people, but they do live in a real city, so the fun of it all is finding little details that I would never have noticed before because I'm trying to look for them through my character's eyes.  I discovered a few inconsistencies that I'll need to go back and fix (silly things like the wrong bus line, or the fact that type of architecture doesn't appear in that 'hood), and found a few details I will want to pepper the text with.  Mostly, I just had a really fun time walking all over the city (I clocked 6.5 miles of walking!), and BONUS, the water in my apartment was shut off for the day so it really was the perfect excuse to get the heck out.  Oh, and the weather was about as gorgeous as could possibly be.  Okay, now I'm just annoying myself with my own happiness.  Here are some pics from the day:
This little tree is JUST about to bloom.  Don't forget to turn your clocks forward this weekend!


Pretty Dolores Street with all its palm trees


In the Mission, murals are everywhere.  This one invites you to have an oceanside moment.

Gorgeous door in the Mission

Ah, Pop's.  I raise my glass to you.



A favorite taqueria and its accompanying mural

Dynamo Donuts for late morning snack!  Holy moses, that molasses guiness donut was good!!  Please also see the Gibralter: a drink that originated here in SF

View from back porch of Dynamo Donuts includes the strangest cat walk ever.  No porch: just a two-by-four leading to his cat door.  

Stop sign art made from shedding palm trees

Just liked the lines on this place

And now we come to Alamo Square with the prerequisite shot of the painted ladies.

Poppies!! 



Intersections: Muni art

I'm gonna go soak my feet now.  Have a great weekend!!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The 2018 Iceland Report: Part Last

The exciting (or at least the inevitable) conclusion of Part One and Part Two of Icelandic awesomeness....


Day Six: Ekra Cottage/ Lagarfljótsvirkjun to Höfn
This day was all about epic scenery. Kilometer after kilometer of stunning beauty. The ever-shifting sweeping views afforded us herds of wild reindeer, giant snowy fjords, a mossy valley, snow blowing across the road like dry ice, lava rock, waterfalls. It was a total feast.













Our halfway point was Djúpivogur which houses a collection of giant roadside marble eggs, each one fashioned after a particular type of bird's egg.



We arrived in Höfn and checked out the harbor and the free museum (a welcome respite from the windy harbor) before checking into our guesthouse. Which we had all to ourselves. We made one last meal of fusilli and bell pepper (fusilli meal #4 for the trip for those keeping track - I'll be taking a good long break from fusilli now) and read. I found a left-behind copy of The Silence of the Sea by Yrsa Sigurðar…

Time, as understood in the fourth trimester

Having a baby is not unlike accidentally slipping into a science fiction universe, everything you know is so completely upended. I wrote an essay about how my sense of time shifted out from under me in the first months of my daughter's life. 



Excerpts in italics are from the essay The Beginning Of Time, by Stephen W. Hawking

1.
The time scale of the universe is very long compared to that for human life. It was therefore not surprising that until recently, the universe was thought to be essentially static and unchanging in time.

The Longest Shortest Time is the name of a podcast on parenting that I heard about several years before becoming a parent and filed away mentally. “The days are long but the years are short” is another phrase used to both comfort and cajole new parents. The implication is that parenting shifts your experience of time, as if life simply advancing in years wasn’t enough to do the same. One hour of an infant screaming inconsolably after her two month immunizatio…

Quarterly Reading Report: Q2

The end of the second quarter snuck up on me: it feels like only three weeks have passed since my last quarterly report. Part of the speedy passing of time was from all the good books I've been reading lately. I've already told you how much I loved re-reading The Magic Summer. Here are my other favorites from this season:

Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal, by Mary Roach. This gem is from one of my favorite local authors. Mary Roach's sense of humor should really get it's own zip code, it's so wonderful. I learned a great deal, sometimes about things I wasn't sure I wanted to know (like how to properly use flatus in a sentence), and I can't tell you the amount of times per week I find myself thinking about the nutritional content of my dinner compared to my cats' on account of this book.


As a delighted listener once said at a reading she did: "You keep writing books about exactly the thing I'm most interested in, except I didn't know I…