The Wedge of the San Rafael

The Wedge of the San Rafael
Someone has to live here, in the middle of desert beauty. Might as well be the Kellys.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Beware the Coddling Moth

Ah, 'tis the season. My daughter, Liz, took a call this afternoon from our next door neighbor who told her, "Tell Martin it's time to spray for coddling moths." Kathy hung up, and Liz was mystified. I suggested to Liz that quite possibly our little hamlet of Wellington, Utah - home of the gotcha speed trap - is also a center of espionage. It sounded like code to me. We have a password in our family, which I dare not divulge, or I would have to kill you. It is not coddling moths, however.

When Martin returned, he cleared it up. Apparently the coddling moth is something that attacks apple trees, ours specifically. Kathy works for the Carbon County extension agency, which deals in coddling moths. He also told us that last year, Kathy delivered this message: "Time to spray for moddling cloths." I'm not sure which one I like more.

Barring a real kerfluffle from the coddling moths, the garden is mostly planted now. I was sent on an errand this morning to locate zucchini seeds. Believe it or not, they were hard to find. Fast forward to August, when everyone has waaay too many zucchini, ranging from tiny to submarine. In August, you can't even give away zucchini. It's the only time of year people lock their cars around here, for fear someone will sneak a zucchini or ten into the backseat. It appears that people are planting way too many zucchini right now, which leads to overpopulation in August.

I'm no gardener. I leave that to my husband, who enjoys gardening. We have a perfect division of labor. He plants it (I helped when forced, but I whine a lot), and I cook it and can it.

Massive change of subject. Usually my transition is much more polished, but hey, there are coddling moths, er, coddling close by, and I need to get this done. I've added book covers to this blog. The good folks at Cedar Fort - Angela Olsen principally - did the lovely one for Mrs. Drew Plays Her Hand. Some equally talented folks in Seattle did the one for Daughter of Fortune, also an improvement on the original.

Mrs. Drew will be out in September. It's one of my Signet reprints. Roxie Drew earned me my first Rita Award from Romance Writers of America. Daughter of Fortune, set in 1680 in the Spanish colony of New Mexico, is my first novel, published in 1984, I think. It's a bit hard to find now. A while back, a hardback copy was for sale on Amazon for $200+, but I can't imagine anyone actually paying that. Anyway, it'll be available in paperback and ebook from Camelpress in July, I believe.

Be kind. It's a first novel. Then, as now, when I sit down to write, I receite my mantra: "This is not Hamlet and I am not Shakespeare," before I start to write.

In September, Signet is releasing Libby's London Merchant as an ebook. Ditto with One Good Turn in November, the sequel to Libby. I don't do sequels too often, but that was a much-requested one.

Right now, I'm reading about Comanches, preparatory to completing Book One in The Spanish Brand series. I'm calling it The Double Cross. You'll have to buy it to find out why.

There's a flutter at the window. Coddling moths must have escaped from the apple trees. (Now there's a secret code phrase. If Jeremy Ritter will drop by for dinner some night, I'll share it with him for the next Bourne movie.