greygirlbeast: (white)
Cold out there. Cold and sunny. I think spring's decided to skip this year.

Here I sit, with my sour stomach and shakey hands and ringing ears, and the day ahead of me. And there's really not a lot to say about yesterday.

I spent the entire day looking for a story for Sirenia Digest #64, and I think I found something called "Random Thoughts Before a Fatal Crash." Today I have to begin making a story from the idea, stone and mortar and what have you.

It could be an awfully prophetic title. I didn't see that yesterday.

I think I might have drawn the cover for the Crimson Alphabet chapbook yesterday.

---

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire. In 1998, I wrote about the fire in The Dreaming #28, "Dreams the Burning Dream." This afternoon, Spooky and I will be ringing a bell at 4:45 p.m. EST, the exact time the first alarm bells were sounded a century ago. I'm a little disheartened that there's no official observance being held in Rhode Island, despite its history of textile mills, etc.

But it's not as if the dead hear bells the living ring. It's not as if the dead hear anything at all.

---

Huge thanks to Geoffrey who seems to have secured permission for me to quote Radiohead's "There, There (The Bony King of Nowhere)" in The Drowning Girl: A Memoir. I'm still waiting to hear from R.E.M.'s management.*

---

Some unexpectedly good rp in SL last night. I really don't do SL anymore. And, for that matter, I think SL all but destroyed any desire I ever had to rp anywhere. You can only be fucked over so many times before you simply cease to care. Anyway, thank you Blair, because last night was awesome.

---

Thanks to all the people who donated to the the Kickstarter project yesterday. We have 12 hours to go, and the project is 207% funded. I'm amazed. I was worried we wouldn't meet our goal, much less meet it more than twice over.

Gonna go write now.

* Actually, I just did.
greygirlbeast: (Default)
Well, we did get a dab of snow, but it all quickly melted. So, no harm done.

1. Yesterday was another day of editing. I thought I was done with the manuscript for Two Worlds and In Between, but then I realized there was, inexplicably, no story for 1998. So...I asked Bill if I could add one, and he kindly consented (all this was in yesterday's entry, I know). So I chose "Salmagundi (New York City, 1981)." Which needed a lot of revision (it was last revised in 2007). And that's what I spent the day doing. Truthfully, it's more complicated than that, but I'll let that stand as my synoptic history, my necessary fiction. Regardless, yesterday was another editing day. But, after dinner, the "final final" ms. went away to subpress, and now it's out of my hands. Cue huge sound of relief.

2. Thanks to the people who donated to the Kickstarter project yesterday! You guys are amazing. One last request regarding "The Tale of Two Ravens" and the birth of Goat Girl Press. We're a mere $35 dollars away from being 200% funded. Anyone want to pony up that last $35? You'd put a big ol' smile on Spooky's face.

3. The Green Man review of "The Steam Dancer (1898)" has been bouncing around in my head. And while it was a very positive review, and I'm grateful for that, something about it began gnawing at me. The reviewer wrote "...I must stress that this tale is depressing..." Only, it's not. Yes, it's set in a world that, I contend, is far more honest and believable than most of those conjured for steampunk. It's a world where the consequences of a reliance on steam power is plainly evident. It's also set in a rough frontier town in the American West. But the story itself, the story of the life of Missouri Banks, is one of triumph and joy. She is raised from squalor and sickness by a man who loves her, who literally puts her back together, and she celebrates her reconstruction in dance. It's not a depressing story. I suspect the more realistic setting - which lacks the deluded shine of so much steampunk - obstructed the reviewers view of the story, though it shouldn't have. Anyway, no...it's emphatically not a depressing story. It's a story (I don't believe I'm about to write this) of the triumph of the human spirit over terrible adversity.

4. Today, I have to find a story for Sirenia Digest #64. I've not had time to think about the digest, between finishing and editing The Drowning Girl: A Memoir and editing Two Worlds and In Between. By the way, everyone who keeps congratulating me on finishing the aforementioned books and saying that now I have breathing room...no. There is no breathing room. There's only writing, if the bills are to be paid and the deadlines are not to be missed. I wish there was breathing room. The air is getting awfully close in here.

5. My great thanks for all the YA suggestions. But I should be clear that, from here on, I've only got time, just now, to read books set in the 20th Century, and, preferably, the first half of the 20th Century. Maybe I can get to the others later.

6. Yesterday morning we read more of Margo Lanagan's superb and brutal Tender Morsels, and last night we read more of Markus Zusak's very wonderful The Book Thief.

And now, kittens, I go forth to whip the word troll into submission...

In Perplexity,
Aunt Beast

Postscript (4:20 p.m.): I don't usually do this. But. If anyone has an idea, or anything remotely approaching an idea, for a vignette for Sirenia Digest #64, feel free to post it. Think of this as me taking requests. Well, at least considering requests.
greygirlbeast: (Narcissa)
We have snow coming. Between 3 and 6 inches. I'm really tired of this.

Anyway, yesterday Spooky and I worked all day and night, until 12:04 a.m. EST (and then I worked some more) to get the "final" manuscript for Two Worlds and In Between finished and off to subpress. And then, when I went to bed about 3 a.m., I realized there wasn't a story for 1998. I have no idea how that happened, but it did. So, today I'm adding either "Salmagundi (New York City, 1981)" or "Paedomorphosis" to the manuscript. Bill will be updating the book's page soon, with the final (there's that word again) Table of Contents.

It seems like everyone is very, very happy with both the collection and its cover. [livejournal.com profile] kylecassidy and I will be shooting the author's photo in Boston on April 2nd.

I think this will not be a linear entry. Too much exhaustion from last night has followed me through my dreams into this day. I'm struggling for coherency. Today is absolutely the last day I can afford to spend on the collection this month. And it can't be a day like yesterday.

---

Friday will mark the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire. In 1998, I wrote about the fire in The Dreaming #28, "Dreams the Burning Dream." On Friday, Spooky and I will be ringing a bell at 4:45 p.m. EST, the exact time the first alarm bells were sounded a century ago.

---

Only 59 hours remain in our Kickstarter "The Tale of the Ravens" project! Yesterday, one of the two remaining $500 slots was claimed, which leaves only one, and we hope it will be claimed today. We're very, very excited. Neither of us expected Kickstarter to go this well. I thought we might just barely make our goal. Which just goes the show you. Anyway, thanks to everyone who's donated so far, and again, please eyeball that last $500 slot, with which come many goodies.

---

Saw an awful — and I mean fucking awful – movie last night, after all the editing. Ray Gower's first (and I hope last) film, Dark Corners (2006). It stars Thora Birch. This is not the high point of her career.

---

Anyway, kittens, there's probably more I was going to say, but I'll say it tomorrow. When I'm more awake and less tired. Right now, I'm going to figure out how to plug a hole in time. But that's okay, I have my sonic screwdriver and a bow tie (bow ties are cool), a cup of coffee and a Siamese cat.

Blearily Trudging Onward,
Aunt Beast

Postscript (1:48 p.m.): The last $500 slot was just taken! But we have exactly one of the $150 slots remaining. Doubt it'll last for long.

Also, I desperately need a top hat for the April 2nd shoot in Boston, as mine was destroyed in a horrid freak accident. A lot top hat, like in the cover painting, like Johnny Depp wears in Dead Man. And there's probably no time to order one, so a hat shop or a loan would be ideal. My cranium's about 23 1/4" around (yeah, big head).
greygirlbeast: (newest chi)
Hubero was entirely unimpressed, just now, when I told him I was away to a hard day at the Office, and to have an extra-dry martini waiting for me when I got home.

Great comments yesterday. Thank you. If you want to keep it up, I won't mind.

Grey and drizzly out there, and, in here, yeah, I'm still exhausted. But I may have turned a corner. I no longer feel quite so much as though something is riding about on my shoulders. I think, last night, it crawled off me and slithered down a drain. We'll be symbiotes again at some later time. For now, I'm not so heavy.

It helps that today is the last day I'm allowing myself to edit the manuscript for Two Worlds and In Between, that tonight it ALL goes away to Bill at subpress. And since Bill has previewed the cover, here's two versions of the entire wondrous cover (behind the cut). We're still a ways from actual layout, of course. But, gods do I love this painting. Thank you, Lee! Oh, I almost forgot. Lee and I will be selling very limited-edition, signed prints of the cover; more on this later:

Changesonekiernan )


All day yesterday was spent editing the collection, right up to the time that Geoffrey ([livejournal.com profile] readingthedark) arrived. It was good to have company again, so soon after Sonya. There must be more people in my life. How's that for a fucking heresy? We got Lebanese takeout and sat up much too late, talking about magick, books, writers, movies, childhood, drugs, tattoos, gaming, and...tons of other stuff. We watched Antti-Jussi Annila's brilliant Sauna (2008) again, because Spooky had not yet sent it back to Netflix, and I knew how much Geoffrey would love it. I caught so much on the second viewing I missed the first time. It's a film that would hold up under many viewings.

Geoffrey is one of the few people on earth who already has a complete copy of The Drowning Girl, but he hasn't yet had time to read it. Only thirteen people have copies, at this point.

Meanwhile...

There are only THREE days remaining in "Tale of the Ravens" Kickstarter project. One of the last two $500 spots was claimed this morning, and we're still hoping the last one will be, too. The greater the margin by which we exceed our goal, the firmer footing Goat Girl Press will set out upon. Spooky and I are already thinking about projects we'll do after "Tale of the Ravens." And look at all the cool stuff that comes with the $500 donation. So, yes. Donate!

And now, kittens, I go down to slay this rough, unruly Other Beast, who is also me. Or, perhaps, merely to fuck it into submission.

A Skosh Less Weighted,
Aunt Beast

P.S. – STILL NOT A HORROR WRITER.
greygirlbeast: (starbuck4)
This is the morning after Utter Exhaustion. The sky is grey, and there's rain. It looks like spring out there, whether or not it actually is spring. We can work that part out later.

There are only nine days remaining in "Tale of the Ravens" Kickstarter project. We'd really like to see those last two $500 spots claimed. Look at the truly cool stuff you get! And, of course, the more we exceed our goal, the firmer footing Goat Girl Press will set out upon. We're already thinking about projects we'll do after "Tale of the Ravens." Spooky's studying all sorts of cool handmade bookbinding techniques. So, yes. Donate!

Yesterday, I started off by adding another 550+ words to the end of The Drowning Girl, the "Back Pages" section that's sort of like an afterword. Almost. The manuscript, which is now essentially finished, presently stands at 105,711 words. That's about 5,000 words longer than The Red Tree. Anyway, while I was working on the novel, Spooky and Sonya were already busy with line edits on Two Worlds and In Between.

By late afternoon, early evening, Sonya and Spooky had made it through the edits on "Postcards from the King of Tides," "Rats Live on No Evil Star," "Estate," and "Breakfast in the House of the Rising Sun," while I'd done only "To This Water (Johnstown, Pennsylvania 1889)" — I discovered long ago that having only one good eye makes me a very slow editor. But...that meant we were almost done. Sonya and I then read through "Giants in the Earth," which is, indeed, far better than the odious "By Turns," and I swapped the latter for the former.

That left only The Dry Salvages to edit. I was going to leave it for Spooky and I to tackle, but stalwart Sonya suggested she and I go ahead and start it, then finish it today (We hates the young people, Precious, so full of energies.) But first we went to East Side Market, lest we starve of having run out of food. At the p.o., there were two CARE packages from Steven Lubold, including new PJ Harvey and Arcade Fire, Peter's American Fantastic Tales (vols. 1 and 2; Vol. 2 includes my story, "The Long Hall on the Top Floor") and two volumes of bookbinding for Spooky.

Back home, after cold roast beef sandwiches and such, Sonya and I read the first 17,292 words on The Dry Salvages. We'll finish it early this afternoon, before she heads back to Boston at 5:30 this evening. And that means the collection will be about 98% ready to go to subpress. It's absolutely true to say that without having Sonya here the past four days (she arrived Saturday evening), I'd have been utterly screwed. She saved my butt. Anyway, after about eight hours of editing yesterday, Spooky played Rift, and Sonya and I watched John Carpenter's The Thing, because she'd never before seen it. There was laundry drama, too, because someone had left an immense load of wet laundry (I'm talking a metric assload) in the washing machine. Spooky and I got to bed about two ayem.

Tomorrow, I'll send The Drowning Girl to my editor at Penguin. And within a day or two, Two Worlds and In Between will be delivered to subpress. Also, Lee and I are talking about offering a very limited edition (50-100 copies) of frameable signed and numbered prints of the collection's cover (which you'll see very soon).

And on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, I'm taking a much needed and well earned break, before I start work on Sirenia Digest #64 on the 21st. Oh, also, I'm adding "The Worm in My Mind's Eye" to Two Worlds and In Between, which has never appeared anywhere but as a short chapbook only available to those who ordered the limited of The Dry Salvages. Also also, yesterday I took lots of photos, and will do so again today, so tomorrow I'll post a sort of photo essay of the end of this editing marathon.

But now...I go forth with platypus in hand to finish up. After I extract Mr. Bastard (alias Hubero) from my lap.

Chat at 'cha later, kittens.

Blinded by the Light at the End of the Tunnel,
Aunt Beast

P.S.: Not to put too fine a point on it, but I AM NOT A HORROR WRITER!
greygirlbeast: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] fornikate writes, "I have found [Ayn] Rand is a great way to weed out people that suck." Indeed. Rarely can one find a useful, simple and reliable douchebag litmus test. But an appreciation of Ayn Rand does spring immediately to mind.

---

Today is another muteday, if only to atone for yesterday's failure. Yesterday, I became very frustrated over work, and had to start speaking. I might have exploded, otherwise.

---

Wonderfully rainy last night, with violent winds. I think the last scabby snow in our neighborhood is gone, gone, gone. Washed away. Okay, well, most of it.

Yesterday, was a day of panic recovery, a day of figuring out how to build a Tardis. I have nine days, but I need twenty. That sort of thing. Spooky read me all there is so far of the tenth chapter of The Drowning Girl: A Memoir, and then she read me the last section of the ninth chapter. Then I wrote a new closing scene for the ninth chapter, which came to 1,078 words. All that is left to do on the novel is to finish the tenth chapter (hopefully today), write the epilogue (hopefully tomorrow), read through the whole manuscript (much of it I've not read, or heard read, except in the writing of it), make about a zillion line edits, secure permission to quote three songs, and send it away to my agent and editor in NYC. Which is to say, the novel is very nearly done.

Two Worlds and In Between has become the much greater worry. We're still proofreading. Yesterday, while I wrote, Spooky proofed "The Daughter of the Four of Pentacles." Today while I write she'll proof "The Dead and the Moonstruck." That leaves "only" The Dry Salvages (a novella of over 30k words), "Stokers Mistress," "From Cabinet 34, Drawer 6," and "Houses Under the Sea." Spooky will do the latter for me tomorrow. Once all this proofreading is done, we have another zillion line edits to make before the ms. is ready to send to subpress.

---

A bunch of eBay books and other things I owe people are going out today. [livejournal.com profile] ashlyme, I need your address (if you've already sent it to me, I lost it, sorry).

---

Let me remind you of the Tale of the Ravens Kickstarter project. The good news is, we have 18 days to go, and the project is 164% funded (!!!). However, the farther over our projected budget we go, the better the finished product will be, and the better chance there will be of Goat Girl Press producing wonderful things after The Tale of the Ravens. There are still two of the four $500 pledge slots remaining, and we'd love to see those filled in the next eighteen days. Though, of course, any donation at all is welcome. Thank you.

---

Last night, being not at all in the mood for gaming, we watched two movies. The first, Ulu Grosbard's True Confessions (1981) is a pretty good, though somewhat odd, story built around the Black Dahlia murder. However, the film's set in 1947, and not 1948, and Elizabeth Short is referred to as Lois Fazenda. The movie, staring Robert De Niro and Robert Duvall, is based on John Gregory Dunne's 1977 novel of the same name, and I assume the changes were taken from the book. So, yes. Pretty good film. But our second feature was Malcolm Venville's 44 Inch Chest, which is utterly fucking brilliant (especially considering it was Venville's directorial debut). Imagine Twelve Angry Men crossed with Guy Ritchie's Snatch, and you're sort of in the neighborhood of this film. Sort of. The entire cast delivers amazing performances, but John Hurt and Ian McShane pretty much steal the show. Presently streamable from Netflix, and a definite must-see. Though, if the word "cunt" causes you too much discomfort, you might want to sit this one out. But it is, after all, a British gangster film. That, by the way— "cunt" —was the only word I was forbidden to use while writing for DC/Vertigo, which I'll never cease to find utterly fucking befuddling.

Later we read more of Suzanne Collins' Catching Fire, which, I am happy to say, has completely recovered from those hurtfully dull first three chapters. Also, in my YA novels I will do all I can to avoid the recap infodumps. They piss me off to hell and back.

---

And now, kittens, it's time to make the doughnuts. Comments! Especially about Sirenia Digest #63, please.

Yours in Joyful Sin,
Aunt Beast (the Haggard and Weary)

The R-Word

Feb. 11th, 2011 10:20 pm
greygirlbeast: (Bjorkdroid)
Neil tweeted about this, then Spooky pointed me to it. Brilliant. Lately, I am utterly amazed at the wonderfulness of so many Kickstarter projects...like this one: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Robotic Edition.

(I'd have posted the video, but something about the embed code hates LiveJournal.)
greygirlbeast: (Default)
The snow is piling up again. But it's only cold, not bitterly cold.

Spooky and I have are both amazed and very, very pleased to see that pledges to The Tale of the Ravens Project have, in less than 24 hours, amounted to 51% of our goal. We are extremely grateful. Whatever doubts I may have harbored about using Kickstarter to fund those projects that can find funding nowhere else are being set aside. You guys rock. There are, though, a couple of questions that have come up, which I'll quickly address:

1. When you make a pledge to the project, it's just that— a pledge. Your card will not actually be charged the amount that you've pledged until (or soon after) March 26th, when the Kickstarter drive ends.

2. Someone asked how much we'll be charging for the finished folio/book. Quick answer: We're guessing that no more than 50 copies of the folio/book will be printed, about half of which may end up going to backers at the $150 and $500 support levels (29 copies, maximum/10 are currently spoken for). The remaining copies would likely run about $150 dollars each, considering production costs and time required to make them. Prints will also be sold, and an as yet undetermined number of copies the text-only chapbook will be available.

3. We cannot reserve copies. The only way to be sure you'll receive a copy of the finished folio is to pledge at the $150 or $500 dollar level.

4. You must create an account with Kickstarter to pledge, but that's very, very quick and easy.

Just click here to pledge. Also, here's a link to the Kickstarter FAQ. Again, thanks to everyone who has pledged so far! And yes, we are now calling ourselves Goat Girl Press.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,460 words on Chapter 5 of The Drowning Girl: A Memoir. I'm likely within four days of finishing the chapter. However, today I may set it aside to work on Sirenia Digest #62, then come back to the novel on Thursday.

[livejournal.com profile] readingthedark braved the nasty weather and slick roads last night, and so visited with us after all. We got take out from the Palestinian place. I had a really good, very spicy beef shawarma. And we talked, and talked, and talked. I read him the most-recent seventeen pages of the novel, and was relieved that he liked them. He headed back to Framingham about 4 a.m. CaST.

Oh, also, I got on Spooky's laptop long enough to create an elf in LoTRO. Don't know if I'll ever actually get to play her, but it was still cool. Mithrien of Lorien. Now, time to brush my teeth, watch the snow fall, have some hot cocoa with Kraken spiced rum, and get to work.
greygirlbeast: (Default)
1. More snow. And still more on the way. We should have gone to the market last night and we didn't, so somehow we have to manage that trick today, though the driveway hasn't been shoveled. By the way, in the comments to yesterday's entry— after my quip about it being colder in Antarctica than Providence— [livejournal.com profile] amandakcampbell noted "According to the Weather Channel's website, McMurdo [Station,] Antarctica is 12˚F today, with a windchill of -5˚F." Admittedly, it's presently summer in Antarctica, but still.

2. Yesterday, I wrote 1,139 words on Chapter 5 of The Drowning Girl: A Memoir, and reached the far side of the very difficult and pivotal scene. This morning, I feel sort of ambivalent about the scene, and I have no idea whether or not I did it right. But today I will proceed to the next scene. Also, yesterday, my editor and I spoke about the novel, via email. The tentative release date is March 2012. The title is now set in stone.

3. And now, without further adieu: Spooky and I have embarked upon our very first experiment with crowd-sourcing. For a long time, we've been talking about doing a picture book sort of thing based on her raven dolls and paintings. Hopefully, with the help of Kickstarter and your participation, we can make it happen. To learn all the details about The Tale of the Ravens Project, follow this link. It's all pretty self-explanatory, but I'll gladly answer any questions you may have. I've been very impressed, seeing what can be done with Kickstarter, and if this works, there's a second and more ambitious project, a non-publishing project, I hope to be able to fund for 2012, but only if this first effort succeeds. So, please do have a look. Give us all your money, and we'll make something marvelous for you in return.

Note that your card will not be charged until and unless the project is completely funded. Regardless, you won't be charged until on or after March 26th. You also have to register at Kickstarter to donate.

4. The plan had been for [livejournal.com profile] readingthedark to drive down from Framingham tonight for a visit, but I think this weather is going to prevent that.

5. After dinner last night, I proofread the text for the Kickstarter page, so Spooky could hit the launch button. Also, I watched the first ten minutes or so of Jaws, as it's relevant to the next bit of The Drowning Girl, to what I'll be writing this afternoon. I'd forgotten that the first attack takes place at sunset. I remembered it happening at night. Which is why we research.

6. Last night started with WoW, and, after about two hours, Shaharrazad, my blood-elf warlock, reached Level 85*. Suraa reached 85 night before last. Anyway, booya and all, but it was a bittersweet sort of achievement, as it occurred during the idiot "Harrison Jones"/Goblin Hitler fiasco. There were a couple of comments yesterday that I thought did a pretty good job of touching on why I've lost patience with Wow. [livejournal.com profile] laudre wrote:

I mostly enjoyed the Raiders pastiche, but the things that I didn't like, I really didn't like; by the time I went through it with a second character, I was sick of the nigh-constant deprotagonization and the endless cut-scenes. My characters -- one, a green-skinned dervish of elemental fury, and the other, a shapeshifting master of natural power who stands and holds the line against endless waves of enemies, who have faced down giants, dragons, demons, and eldritch horrors that would shatter lesser minds -- would not cower in fear of a self-important, pissant goblin with a fucking rocket launcher. Let alone need to be "saved" by Harrison fucking Jones.

And [livejournal.com profile] lee_in_limbo wrote:

I haven't progressed very far in it, but I find I rather like LoTRO. It's not quite as addictive as WoW, but at the same time, it seems to move at more my speed (something my wife isn't as keen on), and I haven't run into the kind of uber-jock mentality that was putting me off high-end WoW content. I'm sure it's there, but there's less drive to reach end game content in LoTRO for me, because I don't know anybody there, and don't particularly care at this time. I just want to be immersed in an interesting environment with interesting storytelling. WoW keeps almost getting there, but then smirks and ruins the whole thing. I love humour, but this cheeky NatLamp attitude loses its appeal.

The comparison with National Lampoon is apt, as is the "uber-jock mentality" bit. World of Warcraft: Cataclysm isn't a heroic fantasy MMORPG, but an MMORPG that has become, at best, a crude low-brow spoof of heroic fantasy. There's a whole essay in this, about, among other things, the inability and unwillingness of gamers to suspend disbelief and about those who cater to the lowest common denominator. But it'll have to wait for another time.

Anyway, after WoW, I had a few good hours of rp in Insilico, with yet another incarnation of the Xiang AI, who's run afoul of a bounty hunter (thank you, Tracy). Molly and Grendel have, for now, returned to London.

And now...doughnuts (no, not literal doughnuts).

Today's a good day for comments.

Yours If You Can Stand Me,
Aunt Beast

* Total actual time played to reach Level 85: 52 days, 19 hours, 36 minutes, and 18 seconds.

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greygirlbeast: (Default)
Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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