There’s nothing about COVID-19 and everything that’s going on that you haven’t already heard, so I’ll save it except to say that I’ve been a social isolation hobbyist for my entire adult life and I can assure you, you’ll come to enjoy it.
Also, those friggin’ kids on the beach need to read Poe’s “The Masque of the Red Death,” not that they’d get it or think it applied to them. I blame T-ball.
But on to the point of today’s post.
Happy birthday, Maine! The party may have been postponed (let’s hope it wasn’t canceled), but we love you and want you to know it. For those of you who may not know, Maine turned 200 on March 15. And she never looked better.
Maine used to be a giant appendage of Massachusetts, separated by New Hampshire’s 18 miles of coastline. It was born as a state out of an ugly and unfriendly marriage of convenience, the Missouri Compromise. And if you don’t know the details, the simple definition is that, because Congress couldn’t agree that slavery was an abhorrent horrific shameful stain on the union, they made a deal. Missouri could come in as a slave state and Maine could come in a free state. A little something for everyone.
But out of that graceless start grew the most graceful state.
We Maine crime writers are asked all the time why a state with so little crime spurs so much of it in fiction. There’s really no right or wrong answer to that, but more and more frequently I think what it is is that cool people who are creative and have imaginations want to be in this very cool place.
I’m lucky enough to live here, to have grown up here and to have been able to come back after the early part of my adult life in our neighbor to the west.
I try in my books to treat Maine with the love and care I feel for it. And if there’s one writing tip in here somewhere, it’s that if you’re going to write about a place you love, do it with love. Maine should never be the boring character or bad guy in your book.
But enough from me. Sappy gushy stuff is boring, too. That’s why I write mysteries.
I like to drive around and see the sights, and here’s some snaps I’ve taken over the past couple of years. I’ve reprsented every county in the state, believe it or not. And some more than once just for the heck of it. Happy birthday!