And I don’t even have to go to the mall (although I will anyway).

I’m telling myself to write a collection of short stories, each with a title corresponding to the titles of the tracks on Madonna’s Like a Virgin album.

I’m currently writing “Like a Virgin.” I’m about halfway through.

Other tracks, in case you need reminding:

Material Girl
[Like a Virgin]
Over and Over
Love Don’t Live Here Anymore
Into the Groove
Dress You Up

I’m a fan of structure. Anyone who tries to make plans with me knows that my weekend is booked by Wednesday. I’m interested in structure beyond the form of the text, but more in the form of the project. I just started reading Salvador Plascencia’s The People of Paper, which is a structural book akin to another favorite of mine, Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves.

And just as I warned everyone, once I started reading fiction again, I started writing it.

It finally happened.

I just gave up and started writing fiction.

I took a three-day vacation from work, which was wonderful and overdue. A line popped into my head—a first line—and I started writing a story. I’m about halfway into it. It’s going pretty well, I think.

Other vacation highlights: laying out by the pool and earning a very, very dark tan; cleaning my house; catching up on my TV shows; doing the Vancouver section of LOCUSPOINT.

Also, wasting several hours preparing for a presentation for class that I didn’t get to give because we ran out of time.

And: retail therapy. Gap, Express, Nordstrom. Bought several work shirts, two pairs of hot pants (not “hot pants” but pants that are hot), some socks, a tie. Got some grown-up man cologne. Had a nice lunch.