A close family friend had just passed. At the wake, in my grief, I believe I may have overindulged because that night I fell in my kitchen and broke my tailbone. Knowing I'd be laid up for over a month, and knowing likewise that I cannot live on Freecell and reruns of House alone, I did the only other thing I could think of while flat on my back: construct! I came up with eight themes, threw the puzzles together with little care, and submitted in a package.
To my ever-growing appreciation and delight, one of my themes was acceptable to Mr. Shortz's impeccable taste, though the construction and non-thematic entries were "subpar." (They were being polite; it was a nightmare!) I resubmitted three or four times, taking suggestions for improvement, one rejection being due, to my total mortification, to exceeding word count! How green am I? But this is my first puzzle, and I can say with near certainty that that won't happen again; shame is a powerful thing!
When I devised the theme for this puzzle, I intended it for a Thursday, which is all I will say about its content. My fondest hope is that it might be universally enjoyed.
Meanwhile, I'll return to toiling in obscurity and newfound wrinkles at my other passion: writing country songs in a small Oregon town for a fan base of three, one of whom is my mother, and will keep wondering daily why all of Nashville isn't knocking down my door.