Eating Authors: Randy Henderson

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Randy Henderson

If you’re reading this on Monday morning (i.e., soon after it posts), please know that I have somehow managed to haul myself out of bed, visions of the glorious past four days at GenCon still dancing in my head, and dragged myself to the DayJob™ to toil away at vast amounts of data. Do Not Try This At Home.

Instead, I recommend you continue reading here, and meet this week’s EATING AUTHORS guest, Randy Henderson. Sorry, that’s about the best segue I can manage after completing three conventions in three weeks.

So what can I tell you about Randy? Well, he’s quirky. A self-described “milkshake connoisseur,” — seriously, what does that even mean? And what about malt? Huh, Randy, huh? — he took home the big prize from the Writers’ of the Future in 2014, and has since made a name for himself writing the Familia Arcana, a series of dark, funny, urban fantasy novels about Finn Gramaraye, a nice enough guy who gets framed for crimes of necromancy, and we’re off and running. The third book, Smells Like Finn Spirit isn’t due out until next March, but do go ahead and get started with the first two now, if you haven’t already discovered these books.

LMS: Welcome, Randy. As tempted as I am to ask you about your most memorable milkshake, I need to stick to the format and inquire after your most memorable meal.

RH: My most memorable meal was my first full meal on the factory trawler (fishing boat) Ocean Rover. This was my first trip to Alaska, where I would be working on the ship for months at sea.

Finn Fancy Necromancy

The first time I walked into the cafeteria, I was quite pleased and surprised at the quality and quantity of food options, and dug in heartily: jumbo prawns, corn, pasta, and a whole lot of orange juice, as I recall.

I was feeling pretty good as we headed out from Seattle, and somewhat cocky as we cruised along. The gentle rock of the boat didn’t bother me.

Then we hit open sea.

That was when I learned the difference between riding around the sheltered waters of the Puget Sound versus actual ocean. And the Ocean Rover was no cruise liner large enough to counter the effects of the waves. When you hit rocky seas, you felt it.

I was revisiting that meal for hours.

Bigfootloose and Finn Fancy Free

Gods, the orange juice. How it burned.

In the midst of my misery, a fellow crewmate offered the folk solution of swallowing some corn syrup to coat the stomach. If you have never tasted pure corn syrup, it is a thick, viscous, sickeningly sweet goo. I’m pretty sure that was a prank on newbie me.

I still have problems eating or drinking things where I feel I can taste the corn syrup.

Thankfully, the experience didn’t put me off orange juice though.

So while my favorite meals in memory are ones I had with friends, or certain romantic meals, that first meal on the Ocean Rover was certainly memorable.

Thanks, Randy. That’s certainly a different spin on the dangers of corn syrup.

Next Monday: Another author and another meal!

#SFWApro

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