I have a birthday coming up this weekend, so I told Mr. Mary Kay what I want for my birthday is a sledgehammer and a dumpster. He was OK with this, since it’s lots easier to pick up the phone and order a dumpster than it is to go out and buy jewelry–and as we all know, with sledgehammers, one size fits all. So the family is headed down to the beach for the weekend, and the plan is that we will begin working on the Breeze Inn. The kitchen will probably be our first demo victim. I can’t wait to haul those cheesey cabinets outta there. In other news, I’m finishing up my four-day stint down at St. Simon’s Island. THE FIXER-UPPER seems to be coming along nicely, and I’m only six pages away from making my goal of reaching 400 pages. The target is 500 pages by the end of August, and this puppy will be done-or at least the first draft anyway. This seems like a lot, I know, but manuscript pages are different from finished pages, and I tend to write overly-long–and over-plot as well. I have writer friends who say they can barely squeeze out a story in 275-300 pages. Hah! I wish that were my problem. I guess I must sorta subscribe to the sculpting method of writing, whereby I spend months concocting this big granite lump of a an elephant and then have to spend more months whittling away everything that doesn’t look like an elephant. Fortunately, I have a superb (and understanding) editor who indulges my lunacy, and a superb (and crafty) agent who knows how to give me the time and space I need to get my job done.