It’s been a busy couple of weeks. A lot has happened, although not much writing has been done. I’ve been struggling to get back into a novel I wrote a couple years ago. I know it’s a solid story with sympathetic characters, but it’s been so long since I’ve worked on it that I just feel distant from it. So today I’m putting it on my Kindle and reading it from beginning to end. Hopefully that helps.

In other parts of life, my decluttering has been going well. If I keep up my current pace—way more than the 10 items per day I originally planned to get rid of—my massive decluttering should be done by midsummer.

I went to see Jane Goodall speak at my alma mater last week, and she was amazing. She really made you want to go out into the world and make a difference, and she talked about how important it is for parents to be supportive of their children and how her mother’s support helped her achieve her dreams. She encouraged the audience to help animals, help people, and help the planet, and her very life is proof that you can help both people and animals at the same time.

I’m also continuing my reread of the Harry Potter books. This week I’m on “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.” Every time I read those books, I’m transported. I’m at Hogwarts in Snape’s potions class, or I’m walking down Diagon Alley, or I’m crash-landing an enchanted car into the Whomping Willow. Everything about those books—the characters, the world, the details—enchants me as a reader. They inspire me not only as a reader, but also as a writer. I hope, someday, to write a book that affects readers the way those books affect me. I leave you with a quote from Alan Rickman, who plays Severus Snape:

“When I’m 80 years old and sitting in a rocking chair, I’ll be reading Harry Potter. And my family will say to me, ‘After all this time?’ And I will say, ‘Always.’”

So, not much of an ROW80 check-in here. Hopefully I have more to report in my Sunday check-in. Click here to check in with other participants.

Happy writing and reading, everyone!

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