greygirlbeast: (Bowie3)
[personal profile] greygirlbeast
Please do comment; I'll be here all damn day.

It seems that all my family and friends in Birmingham are safe. I know a few people in Tuscaloosa, mostly at the University, and I've heard nothing from that end. But the devastation from yesterday's tornadoes is horrific, and I've had to make myself stop looking at the photographs of familiar places reduced to unfamiliar places. Tornadoes are a part of living in the South that I do not miss.

---

Dream images from last night are mostly lost, and those that remain are faint and almost indistinguishable from the background clutter of my mind. There was a beautiful mastodon skeleton weathering from a river bank. There was frozen Stalingrad during World War II.

All summer they drove us back through the Ukraine.
Smolyensk and Viyasma soon fell.
By autumn, we stood with our backs to the town of Orel.


No, the mastodon skeleton wasn't in Stalingrad.

---

Work was an odd and scatterbrained affair yesterday. Lots of loose ends and such, and today I have to begin a new piece for Sirenia Digest, because I am woefully fucking late getting to it. Oh, by the way, the snazzy new Sirenia Digest website will go live this weekend or early next week.

I mentioned that the ARCs for Two Worlds and In Between arrived on Tuesday. They include Lee Moyer's cover art, but brightness and contrast are way off, rendering the cover muddy and dark. And it's not the actual layout we're going with, so if you happen to see one of the ARCs, this is not what the final book will actually look like. I spent part of yesterday making corrections to the text, because no matter how many times you proofread a thing, or how many people len their eyes to the proofreading, it will still be filled with fucking errors. The manuscript is 210,209 words long, which breaks down to 965,432 individual characters, all of which have to be checked again and again. Also, it seems that the release date on the book has been moved from January 2012 to September 30, 2011. I had no idea.

I spent a goodly portion of yesterday on the cover for "The Crimson Alphabet," the chapbook that will accompany Two Worlds and In Between. I'd already done a cover, but decided I hated it and started over. The end result is very, very simple.

---

[livejournal.com profile] kylecassidy has announced the casting call for two projects related to The Drowning Girl: A Memoir. You can see his announcement here, but I'll also post his entry here in its entirety later. A book trailer and a still photography project. It's all fairly fucking awesome.

---

Last night, I left the house with Spooky, and we drove to College Hill. Spring is now in full bloom, and the temperatures have been warm enough that I am hereby declaring Cold Spring to have ended and Spring Proper to have begun. We stopped by Acme Video (complimentary Atomic Fireballs!), then Eastside Market, then got cheese burgers from Five Guys in Seekonk, Mass. I'm not used to driving out of state for burgers. That's going to take some time (and it's not something we'll make a habit of doing, either).

Back home, we watched Gaspar Noé's Enter the Void (2009). And I honestly wasn't impressed. If nothing else, the film needs at least 45 minutes trimmed away (running time, a whopping 161 minutes). This film manages to belabor pretty much everything it touches upon. In the hands of a skillful editor, it's possible that something worthwhile could be salvaged. If Lars von Trier and David Lynch had never heard of editing, they might make movies like Enter the Void. Also, it doesn't help that Nathaniel Brown, who plays the protagonist, has all the acting ability of a stalk of broccoli. There are plenty of arresting visuals, and some brutal, beautiful scenes, but even I can only watch psychedelic Tokyo sex scenes, shot from an overhead boom and lit with seizure-inducing, flickering shades of red, for just so long before the yawning begins. I hoped I would feel better about the film this morning, but, in fact, I find that I sort of loathe it; I suppose that's something.

---

I have about a hundred other things in my head, wanting to be spoken of in this blog today. Maybe later.

Disoriented,
Aunt Beast

Date: 2011-04-28 06:11 pm (UTC)
sovay: (PJ Harvey: crow)
From: [personal profile] sovay
It seems that all my family and friends in Birmingham are safe.

I am glad to hear it.

Also, it seems that the release date on the book has been moved from January 2012 to September 30, 2011. I had no idea.

Would you like me to help with this proofreading also? I am serious.

A book trailer and a still photography project. It's all fairly fucking awesome.

Damn. I don't think I'm suitable for any of the casting, but I approve immensely of these concepts.

Date: 2011-04-28 06:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Would you like me to help with this proofreading also? I am serious.

Thanks. We'll see, once the actual page proofs arrive.

Date: 2011-04-28 06:31 pm (UTC)
sovay: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sovay
We'll see, once the actual page proofs arrive.

No problem. With any luck, it will be mostly unnecessary.

Date: 2011-04-28 06:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

With any luck, it will be mostly unnecessary.

Keeping my fingers crossed.

965,432 individual characters

Date: 2011-04-28 06:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tsarina.livejournal.com
So many characters. That's like my week of work, since I go through 180,000 per shift. Sadly, nothing I'm reading is as great.

Re: 965,432 individual characters

Date: 2011-04-28 06:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

That's like my week of work, since I go through 180,000 per shift.

Can I ask what sort of shift?

Re: 965,432 individual characters

Date: 2011-04-28 07:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tsarina.livejournal.com
I get batch assignments, 180,000 characters at a time and ostensibly about 4 hours of work. (Though usually it takes me less.) They are product reviews, questions about products, answers to those questions, stories about products, comments about other reviews of products, user IDs and the like. I read through them all and assign them codes based on all kinds of things like whether there's profanity or product suggestions or a million other things. I get all kinds of stuff, since we have over a thousand clients these days. (Essentially the company I work for manages the ratings & reviews on various websites for retailers and manufacturers.)

It's a really weird part time job. I have learned an awful lot about what people like and don't like about everything from televisions to cell phones to frozen foods to pants to restaurants. There's a lot of terribly written nonsense out there. Some is totally off the wall weird. Some of it is obviously spam or trolls, trying to sex up reviews of ice cream. Some people gush over their most favorite band or favorite shoes. (I would have never expected to get profanity laden vitriolic reviews of tomato plants that didn't live up to expectations.) Sometimes they are really funny, or really depressing. It is an absolute treasure of observation about people though and I read new stuff every time so it keeps me interested. I like it best when some company is having a contest and they want people to write stories for entries on some theme.

Re: 965,432 individual characters

Date: 2011-04-28 07:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com
It's a really weird part time job.

I think you just introduced me to an entirely alien world.
Edited Date: 2011-04-28 07:26 pm (UTC)

Re: 965,432 individual characters

Date: 2011-04-28 08:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tsarina.livejournal.com
It is sort of like watching an ant farm. A demented ant farm full of credit cards - it provides quite an interesting window on economy. I've learned that people expect to be disappointed when dining out (which seems baffling, but bears out statistically when breaking down the reviews) and that even when disappointed people are still happier buying shoes. People also buy the weirdest crap all the time. There's a line of incredibly ugly jackets sold on a home shopping network and I see reviews all the time that start "I own thirty of Pam's jackets so I can wear a different one every day and I just had to buy this..." I would give anything to poke through the closets of some of these people because this stuff is nuts.

Re: 965,432 individual characters

Date: 2011-04-28 08:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

A demented ant farm full of credit cards

Superb line.

I see reviews all the time that start "I own thirty of Pam's jackets so I can wear a different one every day and I just had to buy this..."

Not with a bang, but a whimper.

Re: 965,432 individual characters

Date: 2011-04-29 01:42 am (UTC)
ext_4772: (Palindromes!)
From: [identity profile] chris-walsh.livejournal.com
More love for

A demented ant farm full of credit cards

I'd never pictured that until now, but now I can very easily do so.

It is an absolute treasure of observation about people though and I read new stuff every time so it keeps me interested. I like it best when some company is having a contest and they want people to write stories for entries on some theme.

Ah, the reminder, I'm guessing, that story-writing is a learned skill...

Date: 2011-04-28 06:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] strange-selkie.livejournal.com
Right down 280. Crap I hope no one was driving into it. :(

Date: 2011-04-28 06:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Right down 280. Crap I hope no one was driving into it.

I expect many were.

Date: 2011-04-28 06:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] strange-selkie.livejournal.com
I do not know why they build broad, flat stretches of road like that -- perhaps they were tired of the Red Mountain Expwy being the tornado-sucker.

:(

Date: 2011-04-28 06:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jdack.livejournal.com
I had been paying so little attention to the world at large the last few days I didn't even know what parts of the south were getting hit.

Then someone mentions Tennessee and I about have a panic attack since a sort of ex of mine lives there. Funnily enough while I'm scanning twitter to see if she's posted, she uploads a photo of a tree that was apparently flung at warp speed into the roof of her front porch.

Frightening shit.

Date: 2011-04-28 07:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Frightening shit.

Yeah.

a sort of ex

I have a few of those.

Date: 2011-04-28 06:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] seph-ski.livejournal.com
The tornado warnings that started around Dallas, TX extended all the way up to just a couple counties shy of me last night. I was up til well after 4am listening to the howling wind pushing into my house so hard the walls and floors were popping and creaking. Even with the weather radio on standby, I just couldn't sleep last night. We had tornadoes tear a path of devastation just four miles south of us last year, and there had been no warnings or sirens that time, so I don't really feel like I can rely on those things now. I hate tornadoes, and tornadoes after dark are especially terrifying. When I got up this morning and saw the damage to the southern states, I was sick.

On a -much- better note, I'm very excited about the book trailer. I can't wait to see it.

Date: 2011-04-28 07:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

I hate tornadoes, and tornadoes after dark are especially terrifying.

This was a frequent reality of my childhood.

Date: 2011-04-28 07:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jenjen4280.livejournal.com
i tripped across this while surfing yesterday... lovecraft house with tentacles made from legos. it made me smile. hopefully it'll brighten your day a bit too.

http://boingboing.net/2011/04/14/lego-lovecraft-house.html

Date: 2011-04-28 07:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] robyn-ma.livejournal.com
'No, the mastodon skeleton wasn't in Stalingrad.'

But what if it were? What was it doing there?

Story!

Date: 2011-04-28 07:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

But what if it were? What was it doing there?

Now I have to look into the geology of Volgograd...

Date: 2011-04-29 12:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] spank-an-elf.livejournal.com
Also, it doesn't help that Nathaniel Brown, who plays the protagonist, has all the acting ability of a stalk of broccoli.

My keyboard has wine on it again. I switched to drinking Pinot Grigio for that exact reason. I have a dreadful habit of taking a sip and not swallowing it. This dolt should know better.

I love your actors as food descriptions. A few days ago it was a bowl of Cream of Wheat, now broccoli. I look forward to what's next on the menu.

Date: 2011-04-29 02:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

I love your actors as food descriptions.

I calls 'em as I sees 'em.

Date: 2011-04-29 12:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] unknownbinaries.livejournal.com
Atlanta seems to have escaped the storms relatively unscathed, but I've been a recluse this week with no end in sight. Two comics in various stages of manifestation, a set of book illustrations and two personal pieces will do that.

They still make Atomic Fireballs?! I was a complete cinnamon-candy junkie of a child, and loved those.

Date: 2011-04-29 02:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

They still make Atomic Fireballs?!

Oh, yeah.

Date: 2011-04-29 01:27 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] waristerrorism.livejournal.com
The manuscript is 210,209 words long, which breaks down to 965,432 individual characters, all of which have to be checked again and again.

I love that sentence. *scrunchy face*

Date: 2011-04-29 02:02 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

I love that sentence. *scrunchy face*

It's sort of terrifying.

Date: 2011-04-29 02:46 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] catconley.livejournal.com
Ooooh, Five Guys. They're even better than Johnny Rockets, and I like those burgers a lot. Now I'm hungry again...

Date: 2011-04-29 06:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] humglum.livejournal.com

They are the best! And a "regular" order of fries is enough for 3 or 4 people. We had one 5 minutes down the road in Atlanta, which was so dangerous. At least here we have to drive about 15 minutes and cross the state line...

Date: 2011-04-29 09:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] catconley.livejournal.com
100% yes on the fries :) And a 5 Guys 5 minutes down the road from you? Oh man, that IS dangerous. I try to forget about the Seekonk one as much as possible for just that reason, but since it's a gorgeous night, I'm starving, and I'm thinking about it, there is a 99% chance that I'll be headed there as soon as I close my computer...

Date: 2011-04-30 05:59 am (UTC)
ext_4772: (Flavored Calories.)
From: [identity profile] chris-walsh.livejournal.com
If my office ever decides it wants Five Guys for lunch, I already know the nearest one is a 7.5-mile drive from the office. That's doable. (I'm a convert to their food, too. Also, I order food for part of my office.)

I once realized I was in a crap mood when I was so distracted by said mood that I didn't order any sauce for my Five Guys burger.

Date: 2011-04-29 02:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kaz-mahoney.livejournal.com
I love that you're working with Kyle. He is so damn cool & his photography always amazes me. To see two artists I admire so much collaborating like this inspires me!

There: a positive comment for the day.

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