By Jeanne Adams
Let me say right off the bat that I adore Winter. Fall and Winter are my favorite seasons, followed quickly by Spring.
What about Summer, you ask? Its my least favorite. I hibernate in summer because I just wilt in the heat. I'm a mountain girl, I like it cool. I adored Romance Writers of America National this year in lovely, cool San Francisco. Ahhhhh.
(Usually, I dread National because I have to dress up and be professional in the heat. And summer RWA in DALLAS? There are not enough fans and AC made to make that bearable. Urg.)
Okay, that's off track. Back to Winter and snow. Snow!!! I so want it to snow, snow, snow. It's been sleeting, we got a mild ice storm on Tuesday - bleech on ice storms - and we've had a dusting of flurries, but no snow. Where is it? It's 32 degrees farenheit. C'mon!!!
Blame global warming or the melting glaciers or something, but personally I am going to indulge in a serious pout.
I want to sled, and make forts (I think I'll make it a bit bigger than the one pictured with the cats!) and have a wicked, wild, crazy snowball fight with my sons. I want to throw the snowballs into the air and get the dogs to chase them. Back in '96, just prior to my move to DC I got caught in a blizzard in Virginia. (I lived in NC at the time) It was an absolute blast. I was at a dog show and there were about twenty of us stuck in the hotel along with a skeleton hotel staff, a night manager who'd been on when they shut the major roads, and a whole lot of dogs, large and small, who were ready to have a blast in the snow.
Have a blast we did. We built snow forts and snowball fights with perfect strangers who quickly became allies or enemies over the walls of two, four-foot-high forts. Snow diving by the dogs - Dalmatians - quickly became a game of spot-the-spots. Trust me, it's REALLY hard to see a Dalmatian in the snow! If you don't believe me, check out this YouTube video of Bailey, whom I believe is a Dal crossbreed. :> You'll LOL. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0sUL0KCIc48
That same year, I'm told, there was cross-country skiing on the mall in DC. The monuments were all snowbound and my friend, also with Dalmatians, loosed her dogs on Capitol hill to romp in the snow. A LARGE time was had by all. She has pictures of them running up and down the capitol steps. Wheeeee!
I also want to see my new dog, Diver, the Irish Water Spaniel (IWS) in the snow. A fellow IWS afficianado, Jeremy Kezer took these fabulous pictures of his girls, Fiona and Selchie, in the Massachusetts snow right before Christmas. (Maybe I should move to Massachusetts. After all, the Adamses are originally from Boston...and they had snow BEFORE Christmas.) IWS don't care if it's wet, cold, snowing or sleeting. If there's play to be had, they are THERE. Grins. They are a fabulous fun breed and I am loving being an IWS-mom. Ha! BTW, you can check out more wonderful pix of Jeremy and Kim's dogs here: http://www.chanticoiws.com/index.html (Jeremy was kind enough to give me permission to use these cool shots. If you'd like to see more of his work, check out www.jeremykezer.com)
Anyway, I want to play with my kids and dogs in deep, wonderful fluffy snow. The real stuff. I know Banditas Tawny, Kirsten and Susan had snow at the holiday, as did many others. Alas, DC had none. (Can you tell I'm pouting again?) The saving grace here is that the "real" winter in DC doesn't start until February. President's Day snowstorms are common. Snow for the Ides of March? Oh, yeah. Then, like flipping a switch, April becomes Spring and before you know it, it's hotter than a...well, let's use a phrase I first heard in a little store in my North Carolina hometown:
DC in Summer is hot as the devil's doorknocker. (Do I need to mention hibernation again? No, didn't think so.)
So what's all this got to do with writing?
HAHAHA. Just kidding. In some of the best stories I've ever read, the weather, the seasons and even the landscape play a huge part in how the character's feel, how the story evolves, and even the ways in which the author twists the tale to heighten the emotions of the characters. Nothing like a good blizzard or wicked storm to throw your hero and heroine together. Then again, nothing like a good stormy power outage or icy roads to heighten the fear when the villain is on the loose either!
What's the best book you've ever read where the weather played a part? Any good snowbound books? Any good ice storm books? Are you writing one where the weather plays a part? Or, better yet, are you looking forward to a storm to get some writing DONE? Ha!
Since it's nice and cold and I can mail chocolates without them melting...I'll pick a random winner to get a box of Godiva! And that's S'no joke