Well, I’ve finally finished beta reading From the Ashes, the third book in the Shape-Shifter Chronicles.  I feel that with each successive manuscript I am making fewer comments and suggested changes, which is both pleasing and rewarding.  It also helped that I made a concentrated effort to stick closer to one chapter a day, even going so far as targeting six chapters for last weekend.  I knew I’d be busy most, if not all, of this past week, so I wanted to ensure that my work for Lauren Jankowski didn’t fall too far behind.  Plus I really wanted to get this off my plate so that I have one less draw on my time and attention.

In other news, I was downtown again yesterday, this time on and around State Street.  Not quite the Mag Mile (Michigan Avenue) but close enough.  There’s a mall on State called Block Thirty-Seven – I remember noticing it a few winters back when it was far emptier and much newer.  Because it was raining, my mom and I decided to wander inside for a bit.  Among other things, we learned that this is the location of the Chicago Design Museum, up on the third floor.  If I recall correctly, that one has free admission.  Unfortunately, it wasn’t open.

What was open, down in the basement, was Turning the Page, a used bookstore.  It’s quite clearly a new establishment and probably operating on a shoestring budget from the looks of things.  The store is a way for a charity to raise money and promote reading.  It’s not a large space, nor are the books exceptionally organized.  They do have them broken out by genre (and I mean normal genres, not paranormal romance or any of that subdivided shit) but there’s no alphabetization or other kind of sorting within those shelves.  I did see a mindboggling number of Forgotten Realms novels though, likely more than I’ve ever seen in a single place before.  Still, I managed to find three books I hadn’t read or heard of by authors I knew, which made me happy.  Even better were the prices.  My one hardcover was $4, but the two mass market paperbacks were $1 apiece.  I felt the hardcover was a bit overpriced for what it was in contrast to the rest of the books in the store, but that was easily offset by the undervaluation on the paperbacks.  Who can argue with three books and city of Chicago sales tax for $6.62?

As for Sun Sword, I’m still working on that.  These are not short books.

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