Hi all! Today I asked Catriona McPherson five questions. I knew Catriona would be game. If you aren't familiar with Catriona, she is Scot living in California, one of my most favorite humans on this planet, and a multiple award winning author. The Reek of Red Herrings (A Dandy Gilver mystery published by St. Martin's Press) recently won the Lefty for best historical and is nominated in the same category for the Agatha's. Quiet Neighbors (published by Midnight Ink) is a finalist for the Mary Higgins Clark award and the Agatha award for Best Novel.
And without further delay, here are the random questions and Catriona's awesome answers.
Is your desk messy or clean?
Very organised, but not exactly tidy. I've got piles of things that need to be dealt with, with post-it notes on top telling me the date they need to be dealt with by, and they're backed up by notes on a whiteboard. And I've got a "The Bairn from The Broons" (Google it) bag where I put receipts to enter into my tax-preparation folder. And then there's a wire basket of stuff I'm going to need to refer to in some way but an email will alert me (so it doesn't need to be a pile with a post-it note). On a separate desk is everything to do with the work-in-progress and it does get a bit lively towards the end of a draft.
Have you mastered gluten free baking?
I haven't really mastered anything-free anything, or tried. Fat, dairy, gluten, meat, sugar . . . I kind of love all those things best. I am making leavening-free vegetables for a Passover Seder at fellow writer Eileen Rendahl's house on Saturday and I can do vegetarian and vegan food for guests. BUT! I once made a hasty vegetarian meal for a pal's boyfriend who mentioned it for the first time when he saw my lovely roast chicken hitting the table. I found out ten minutes later he ate fish, from a chippy (in Britain) that fries in beef dripping. He shrugged as if he was being adorable. They broke up.
You just won $1,000 in the lottery. What do you do with it? (follow up) You just won $1M. What do you do with that?!
$1K would sink into the maw of this house without hitting the sides. We need new doors and windows, an exterior paint job and one day should really move the dumpster-dived bath out of the garage into the master-bathroom. And then there are the things I'd like to do: refloor, put a deck and pergola along the front. I live in the Ugliest House in California and it would look a lot better with a heavy veil.
$1M. See above plus a pool. I think Neil and I would make great lottery winners. We would both keep at our same jobs (writer and biology professor) and we'd stay in the same house. I wouldn't change my car but I'd worry less if it made funny noises. I think that's my answer - I'd worry less.
If you could travel anywhere in the world right at this moment, where would you go?
Back to Hawaii! I went there for the first time for Left Coast Crime this spring and fell in love. I'd like to be there again (with the $1M from above) and have time to explore instead of being at panels. Or, as ever, Edinburgh, to surprise my Mum and Dad. I've never been anywhere in Africa. Hawaii-Africa-Mums's would keep me out the way of the builders doing my floor and pool, right?
If you were a baseball player, what song would you choose for your walk to the plate?
Baseball question, eh? I got the baseball question right at the pub quiz in Davis on Monday night. Let me explain. I wasn't listening, and Eileen (her again) leaned forward and said "Catriona: name a baseball player." I said "Alive or dead?" She said "Alive" I said "Madison Baumgartner", which was the right answer. Dead would have been Babe Ruth. Those are my two baseball answers. A song? Hmmmmmm. How about J.J. Cale's "A Thing Going On" - which there wouldn't be.
Thanks for joining me today! Next week I will torture some other poor soul. Have a great week. :)