Sunday, February 18, 2018

The List



I’m often making lists. Sometimes it simple, like what I need at the grocery store. Others it can be more complicated, with projects and deadlines for work. At times I’ll have one going for my writing.

Recently my friend Liv sent me a text that read ‘If you had a playlist of songs specifically for riding your motorcycle, what would you include?’   

As Barney Stinson would say. ‘Challenge accepted!’




Since riding a motorcycle drums up visions of open roads, I opted for those with a driving beat and a faster pace.  

 ‘Get Out of Denver’ by Seger was first, followed by ‘Rockin’ Down the Highway’ by the Doobie Brothers.  ‘Tenth Avenue Freeze-out’ and ‘Thunder Road’ by Springsteen. ‘Call Me the Breeze’ and ‘Gimme Three Steps’ by Lynyrd Skynyrd.  ‘Pretending’ by Clapton. ‘Roll with It’ by Winwood,  ‘R.O.C.K. in the USA’ by Mellencamp and ‘Johnny B. Goode by Berry.  Those were just the first ones that jumped to mind.  There are plenty more in the archives to choose from.

I could go on, but you get the idea. Music is like breathing for me. You gotta have it. Different types of music help set the mood, whether it’s in life or in writing. I don’t know if that’s true for others, but this is what works for me.

Making lists and notes crops up in the books too. Here’s a scene from “Why 319?” where Chene finally gets a break in the case of the serial killer.

I was the first one at the squad at six. With a fresh cup of coffee and two bagels inside me, I was energized. The caffeine was churning when Kozlowski walked in twenty minutes behind me. He slumped into his chair and started working on his own coffee. His eyes went to the large brown bag filled with bagels. I’d brought in a dozen for the squad. I hadn’t bothered with cream cheese.

“Do me a favor.”

“This early on a Wednesday morning, it better be good.”

“Call Megan and Laura and tell them to get here right away. Then wake Pappy and tell him we’ve caught another break.” Normally, Cantrell was in early, but yesterday he mentioned a district conference on his calendar for today. He had planned to hoist a few drinks in Barksdale’s honor last night.

Without a comment, he called the others. Since he didn’t know yet what it was about, he didn’t waste time trying to answer their questions. He took great pleasure in rousting Cantrell from his bed.

“Pappy said one hour. It didn’t sound like he was alone. He also said it better be worth it, and if you start without him, there would be hell to pay.” He extended a hand across the desk. “Give. You ain’t gonna make me wait an hour.”

“What about Cantrell’s warning?”

“Letting me read it does not qualify as starting.”

I flipped him the folder. There were copies ready for the others. Inside was the little bit of information I was able to garner this morning. I made a list of which steps we should take next, and how I would break them out among the team. While he was reading it, I went over the notes, rearranging a couple of points here, adding a few things. Koz scanned the list. He made a couple of suggestions and propped his feet on the desk.

“What do you think?”

“I think you’re on to something. But this is a twisted piece of work, isn’t it?”

“Yes, it is.”

“You think this is the one?”

“I think within forty-eight hours we’re going to find out.”


I haven't heard this one in a while, but since I mentioned the Doobie Brothers great hit, it seems appropriate to share it.  Hope you enjoy it. 





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