On Saturday, I found myself driving home from the far side of Dallas, which takes about three hours. There is a convenient place to stop at the halfway point, and by then I am usually ready to pause for a few minutes and congratulate myself for making it through Dallas traffic without hyperventilating.

On this occasion, it also happened to be lunchtime, so I stopped for a meal. While I was waiting for my order, I pulled out my Kindle because I hate just sitting in a restaurant by myself eavesdropping on everyone else’s conversations—entertaining as that can be!

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman caught my eye. I had read it when it first came out over six years ago, and I thought it would be fun to read at least the beginning again.

Well. That first chapter is so masterfully written, I found myself filled with both admiration and envy. I noticed that he didn’t necessarily follow some of the “rules” that people make a big deal about today, but I still couldn’t tear my eyes away. And please note, this is a young adult book—not even an adult novel.

I’m sure you guessed what happened. I couldn’t stop after the first chapter, or the second. I finished rereading the book today and I enjoyed every minute of it. It made me realize how far I still have to go. However, I also realized something else. This time through, I was much more aware of his Gaiman’s craftsmanship as a writer. I noticed more, and appreciated more. I hope this means that I too have grown as a writer in the last six years!


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