Before I forget, correction. I had the wrong figures on Friday. The quote calls for 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. The message is the same, just ignore the math. And thanks for noticing.

Anyway, my thought today is nice people. There just aren't enough of them in the world, and I often wish I were better at being one. On Saturday a man I'd never seen before gave me the nicest compliment I've had in months. He did it just to be nice, and it made me think what a great place the world would be if there were more people like that. People who always find something good and comment on it. People who listen. People who give you the benefit of the doubt. People who send lovely cards with sincere, personal messages. Those people.

Someone who read my short story in DYING IN A WINTER WONDERLAND expressed surprise that I have a "criminal" mind. I guess that's a compliment; she thought I was nicer than that. All I can say is that writers of crime fiction are generally nice people despite the evil thoughts that lurk in the creative segment of their minds. I haven't yet met a writer I was afraid of, although I suppose we're all capable of murder if the conditions are right (or wrong) enough.

It's the Christmas season now, so concentrate on being one of the nice people and try to ignore the gossips, the bombers, the fault-finders, and the just plain nasty. They're out there, but like Thurber's purple cow, I'd rather see than be one.

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Comment by Peg Herring on December 3, 2008 at 10:44pm
Thanks for the kind words. I'm sure S. King and D. Koontz are really nice guys, and they've done pretty well with it!
Comment by J. F. Juzwik on December 3, 2008 at 4:04am
What a terrific post. I totally agree. As far as I'm concerned, if you want to get technical about it, it takes much less energy to be nice and agreeable than to get angry and get ugly with people. My son (who is an adult) read one of my crime fiction shorts years ago (the first one I had published) and when he was done, he asked me who I was - really. He had thought I was just a 'nice mom' and had no idea such dark thoughts were roaming around inside my head. We had a good laugh about it, but I considered that a fantastic compliment because the story made an impression on him and he really got involved with it and the characters. That's why we write anyway, correct? I think that's quite an accomplishment: being 'generally a nice person' and yet having the ability to create human 'monsters', and I'm proud to be one of those.

But in the real world, and especially during this holiday time, let's take the easy way out and be good to each other. Keep the dark, the evil and the nasty between the covers of a book where they belong.

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