….Toward the end of April 2008, and as the wind howled around my apartment, splattering the windows with rain, I was up much too late, making my first foray into the realm of Blog. So far, so good–the image at the top is a view of the landscape I grew up looking at in Illinois–the road in front of my house. Tolkien’s character Bilbo Baggins famously commented on roads, how the grandest adventures begin just beyond our front garden gate; how the path that leads through Mirkwood and to the very feet of the Lonely Mountain begins here: it’s this same lane running past our doorway.
Here we go, then, with our walking-sticks and our knapsacks! Come with me along this road. We’ll journey through memory, speculation, dream, and reflection. As we march, we’re sure to talk about fantastic occurrences, mysterious folk, fearsome monsters, unforgettable characters, and great stories. For you see, mostly what we’re going to talk about is fiction–the craft of producing it–the writing life. Which is, of course, a much bigger topic than most of us guess…so we may be on this road for a good while. I hope you packed a lunch!