Of the TIME book of your choice:
Charlotte (It was random, I promise!)
Just email me your choice at hryan at whdh dot com and tell me your address!
It’s time for DRIVE TIME! Charlotte McNally discovers big problems in the world of wheels—including an expose
into the dangers of recalled cars. (Yes, it was written before the Toyota recall.) And to celebrate the publication of book 4 in Hank’s best-selling mystery series, those who comment will be entered into a drawing for an ARC of the Agatha-winning book one, PRIME TIME (or the TIME book of their choice!)
Award-winning investigative reporter Hank Phillippi Ryan is currently on the air at Boston's NBC affiliate, where she's broken big stories for the past 24 years. Her stories have resulted in new laws, people sent to prison, homes removed from foreclosure, and millions of dollars in refunds and restitution for consumers.
Along with her 26 EMMYs, Hank’s won also won dozens of other journalism honors. She's been a legislative aide in the United States Senate (working on the Freedom of Information Act) and at Rolling Stone Magazine (working with Hunter S. Thompson).
Her first mysteries, Prime Time (which won the Agatha for Best First Novel, was a double RITA nominee for Best First Book and Best Romantic Suspense Novel, and a Reviewers' Choice Award Winner) and Face Time (Book Sense Notable Book), were best sellers. They were both re-issued this summer from MIRA Books.
Of the IMBA bestseller Air Time (MIRA Sept. 2009), Sue Grafton says: "This is first-class entertainment." Drive Time (MIRA February 2010) just received a starred review from Library Journal, saying “Realistic and compelling…Placing Ryan in the same league as Lisa Scottoline…)."
Her website is http://www.hankphillippiryan.com/
Do You Fool Yourself? by Hank Phillippi Ryan
Television is all about TIME. Getting breaking news on in time. How much time there is until the next deadline. How much time they’ve allotted for your story. How much time there is until someone is going to tell you you’re late. There is no late in TV.
I’ve been a TV reporter for more than 30 years. And as a result, if you want to know what time it is, don’t ask me. I only know what time it is for me.
I see you looking baffled. But here’s what I mean. I don’t know what time it really is—because I’m fooling myself about it. And somehow, it works. How can we fool ourselves? I mean, we should know, right?
For instance. The alarm clock-radio on my nightstand is set nine minutes fast. So when it rings at 7:30, the time I usually have to get up, I creak open my eyes, try to focus on the green numerals, and my brain yells: GET UP! It’s 7:30.
Then there’s a pause, while the other half of my brain happily reminds me that it’s really 7:21, and I delightedly hit the snooze.
Why? Why not just set the clock for the real time? Then set the alarm for, say 7:21, then hit the snooze for nine minutes and get up at the real 7:30?
Because then I don’t get the precious nine “extra” minutes of sleep.
There’s a clock in the bathroom where I do my hair and makeup—I set that one about 12 minutes fast. Here I’m fooling myself to get me to hurry up. I look at the clock, mid-mascara: it’s 8 o’clock already! I panic. Hurry! Then I realize it’s actually just twelve minutes until 8 o’clock, and I have plenty of time, and I can relax a bit. I’m no longer behind—I’m ahead.
Does that make any sense? Do you do that?
I do it with the clock on my wall at the TV station where I work as a reporter—I set that fast, too, but it makes sense in the world of unmissable deadlines. I suppose. I can’t be late, so if the clock is fast, it’s less likely that’ll happen.
My husband says: why don’t you just set the clocks to the REAL TIME? And I see his point. Kind of. But faking myself out works for me.
I also fool myself with money. On payday, I enter the income into my not-so-perfect checkbook register—but I put the deposit amount as less than it really is. So I have a little pad.
My husband says—why don’t you just write down the real amount? So you know how much money is actually there? Not some theoretical amount? Yeah, I see his point. But that doesn’t work for me.
I also hide money from myself in my wallet. The other day, I unzipped a little pouch on the side and there was the secret 20 dollars I had tucked there for emergencies. But I had forgotten it was there! So much for the emergency idea. But see—I’ve done that several times. And I always forget it’s there. Then I’m always delighted to find it.
Is reality so complicated and unmanageable that we have to fool ourselves into making it all work? My little self-trickery makes me happy, and it makes my life work very nicely.
Do you face reality? Or do you have your secret ways?
Here’s my office, since we’re sharing work spaces.
On the desk are two rocks, one inscribed “patience’ and the other “imagine. There’s a bottle of wine that’s a gift from Sue Grafton, and the mirror that I figure is the feng shui answer to the problem that my back is to the door.
Out the window, two huge maple trees.
These are the bookshelves.
This is what used to be the floor in front of the fireplace. (I can find things, though. I really can.)
And my chair with nametags from conferences. (Do you save those?)