As I write one of the last stories in my book, I’ve been listening to a lot of music. On a trip to the Poconos this weekend, I took advantage of a record player at the Airbnb house I rented — and a sale at the music shop in town — to stock up on a few records from the 1930s and 40s. Yesterday morning I listened to some late-20s Bessie Smith recordings. It felt good to listen to Bessie on this old album, through tinny speakers. Music has wound up having more of a presence in this book than I’d anticipated. I’m waiting to see how it manifests in this new story.