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The writing life has its ups and downs, but on days like today it at least has the advantage of taking place largely indoors.  Because if I had to do my work outside on a day like today, I do not think I would get any work done at all.

Spring is a good time to write.  So is autumn.  Winter is great, so long as you can afford to keep the heat on.   But summer is not a good time for any sort of strenuous endeavor, even of the intellectual kind.

Summer heat waves don’t summon up the good times in fiction, either.  They bring us Southern gothic novels featuring humidity and honeysuckle and family secrets (a dead mule may also be involved at some point); and if the supply of Southern gothic fails, the dog days also have a stock of noir-tinged detective novels full of adultery, blackmail, and conspiracy to commit murder.

Only in children’s and young adult fiction, really, is summertime a pleasant source of adventure and romance.