In this ongoing series, we ask SF/F authors to describe a specialty in their lives that has nothing (or very little) to do with writing. Join us as we discover what draws authors to their various hobbies, how they fit into their daily lives, and how and they inform the author’s literary identity!
My dad has a story he used to tell about the Rose Lady. She was a regular customer at the upscale restaurant where he waited tables, and the whole staff could smell her coming from down the block. “She wore so much rose perfume,” he said. “It was like she’d showered in it. I think she’d burned out her nose and couldn’t smell it anymore.”
From this oft-repeated story, I got a sense that perfume was something tasteless and impolite. Something that you imposed on other people who weren’t entirely into the idea. This was reinforced by my mother’s perfume allergy, by the scent-free sanctuary at our U.U. fellowship, by my father’s disdain for the cloying, powdery Bath and Body Works lotion I insisted on wearing throughout high school.