More exciting emails happened all day, and I even called a couple of potential landlords. Man, if I could have a place lined up by the weekend! That would be huge.
I also asked Jeff Lockwood, one of the professors (who specializes in science and nature writing, among other things) for a summer reading list. Here's what he sent back. (Items with a * are books I already own, the rest are on the newest birthday wish list, along with snow boots, silk long underwear, and a mountain bike. Here that, Santa? I've already read the stuff in bold.)
*Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire
Wendell Berry, What are People for?
*Rachel Carson, Silent Spring
Charles Darwin, The Voyage of the Beagle
*Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
Loren Eiseley, Star Thrower (essays), The Innocent Assassins (poetry)
Jean-Henri Fabre, The Life of the Grasshopper
*Stephen J. Gould, Reflections on Natural History
*Aldo Leopold, Sand County Almanac
Barry Lopez, Home Ground
Konrad Lorenz, King Solomon's Ring
*Peter Matthiessen, Snow Leopard
Patrick McManus, I Fish Therefore I Am
* John McPhee, The Control of Nature
*Farley Mowat, Never Cry Wolf
Kathleen Norris, Dakota, A Spiritual Geography
*Michael Pollen, The Botany of Desire
*David Quammen, The Flight of the Iguana
Pattiann Rogers, Firekeeper
*Mary Shelly, Frankenstein
Gary Snyder, Mountains and Rivers Without End
*Henry David Thoreau, Walden
*HG Wells, The Island of Dr. Moreau
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass
Elizabeth Dodd, Spirit's Eye **
Joan Didion, Slouching Toward Bethlehem **
*John D'Agata, About a Mountain
** (I added those.)
In addition, the professor recommended three of his own books: *Locust, *Grasshopper Dreaming, and Prairie Soul, to help me get a feel for where he's coming from (which is only fair, since he's read my work).
With that in mind, today's act of being a writer is going to be to start reading. Up first, Silent Spring.