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Pauses Along the Way

For the past nine days, a book club to which I belong has had the first chapter of my novel, Posted As Missing, in the spotlight. This brought a flood of reviewers and an inundation of comments, analyses and advice. The continuing rain made it easier to remain in Haastrecht as I responded to the comments.

On Wednesday, the skies cleared and I wandered into the centre of town for a look around and to visit the supermarket for supplies. The house in the foreground of this picture was built in 1656, when the Dutch still owned Nieuw Nederland, their colony in what is now New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. I prefer the peacefulness here.

With the fridge, cellar and larder replenished, I continued along the canal, pausing in a peaceful rural mooring just beyond Oudewater to continue responding to the comments on my chapter and interacting with the reviewers. A major criterion in selecting moorings these days is the proximity to a cellular antenna tower.

Friday afternoon, after I had caught up on the overnight comments, I continued along the Hollandse IJssel to Montfoort and found a free three-day mooring just beyond the lift bridge in the centre of town. The Albert Hein supermarket is a block up the street, iPhone connectivity is good, so here I stayed to finish my nine days in the spotlight.

The commenting deadline was midnight Sunday in the US Midwest, so the flood stopped with my breakfast this morning. I have much work to do now sorting through 955 comments totalling over 71,000 words. I am astounded by the quantity, but even more by the quality of the analysis, commentary and advice. I'll move along a hundred metres or so to refresh my free three-day moorage, then sit there sifting through it all and picking the winners for my Thursday deadline.

This is a different style of barging.

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