I wish that I had written a series of books, one every year, about a continuing character (maybe not a private detective …) I like predictability; I’m not easily bored; the character would be my old friend. That I chose to write dozens of books, all stand-alone stories, only occasionally mentioning a character I’d written about before, says something about my wish to punish myself but also about the quality of my mind: I always want something new.
That’s why this blog won’t be about one specific thing, but about many things – about whatever runs (or limps or crawls) across my mind.
Today I’m considering bugs, which I loathe. I think I loathe them more than the average person. I think I have mild entophobia, a serious and persistent fear of insects. I’m offended when National Geographic tries to enlist my support for these maligned and cruelly hunted creatures. Please? If we were supposed to get on the side of insects, they would look like polar bear cubs instead of miniature monsters. As Annie Dillard wrote long ago, fish gotta swim, birds gotta fly, and insects gotta to one horrible thing after another – all of them stomach-churning. I do, however, have a soft spot for the creature most people who fear creepy-crawlies fear most – that is, spiders. They’re not bugs. They’re arachnids (eight legs not six …) And they’re fierce little predators who never met a fly or mosquito or silverfish they didn’t like – that is, like to trap, wrap up in silken rope and suck out their blood. So, we’re on the same side.
Further, my most favorite character in fiction, the wise and clever Charlotte A. Cavatica, was a gray barn spider, specifically an orb weaver. She was a true friend and a good writer. She was, of course the hero character in E.B. White’s immortal classic Charlotte’s Web (Harper), which is the 78th bestselling book of all time and maybe should be the tenth … or the third.
I hope that on this website, Jackie’s Web, you and I will have a small friendship and my books and stories will be able to trap you in their web.
Some digression huh?? It might only have been a paragraph but it went way out across the world of possible topics. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.