greygirlbeast: (Narcissa)
Caitlín R. Kiernan, you will write a short blog entry! Yes, you will. Probably, no one's reading this thing today, anyway. Much less will they comment, so make it short. [I didn't.]

1) THIS IS IMPORTANT! Read it twice. Steam is offering Rift for a mere $14.99!!! That's 50% off! Plus, you play FREE for a month. Now, the offer will never get better than this, and we had a great RP session last night (thanks, guys). You can join us almost, if not quite, for free.

And really, say that you're here reading this and you don't want to take part in an interactive fantasy story written in part by me? You know you do. So, scoot over to Steam and toss them some pennies, download, sign in, create a Defiant character on the Faeblight shard, start grinding those first few marvelous levels, and join us on Telara. No, NOW. Go. I'll still be here when you get back.

2) Yesterday, I wrote three more pages of Alabaster #3 (though I still felt blegh). I should explain, that when I say I wrote three pages, that's three pages of the comic, which usually comes to about three manuscript pages, sometimes four.

3) I'm feeling much better, but it appears a lot of my exhaustion was a bug of the contagious sort, and now Spooky's caught it (as of yesterday). So, I got to say, "I told you I felt awful." But that's the only upside. She's miserable.

4) I'm not a hypocrite. I just like turkey. We eat it a lot (usually legs). But, yeah, yesterday Spooky made an awesome turkey breast (with cranberries, walnuts, apples, garlic, and onions), and we had mashed potatoes (POH_TAE_TOES?), English peas, homemade cranberry sauce (forget that jellied crap in the can), and apple pie. Days of leftovers. And unholy words were spoken to unspeakable gods while Ozzy Osbourne played in the background, so...none of this counts. Move along. Nothing to see here. Thank you. Drive around.

5) I mentioned this, right? Okay. Just checking.

6) This entry was going to be short, wasn't it?

7) I saw this yesterday, and I (no shit) almost cried: "Alabama’s Wealth of Fossil Dinosaur Feathers." Just read the article (after you've downloaded Rift). Suffice to say, I worked with the paleontologist who first noted feathers in the Eutaw Formation, after I'd spent many years urging collectors to focus on the Eutaw Formation (Late Santonian-Early Campanian) if they wanted to find a Cretaceous terrestrial fauna in Alabama. This is more than I ever dared hoped for.

8) The signature sheets for Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart (Subterranean Press, 2012) will reach me soon, and the signing will commence.

9) As I mentioned, great RP last night, the second scene in our rebooted storyline. The cleric Nilleshna called two more Ascendants to the Watchers of the Unseen and the Faceless Man's cause, a Kelari cleric named Emris and a Kelari rogue named Harlakai. And an old member was reunited with the guild, the Eth warrior Anaxakharis. They were all gathered together in a high alpine meadow on the border between Stonefield and Freemarch. Near the end of the scene, one of the guild's more infamous characters, Celinn (Kelari rogue) appeared from the trees and great and terrible weirdness ensued. The game's afoot...again!

10) We're running a Sirenia Digest special. Subscribe now, and you'll get #71 free with issue #72. In fact, if you subscribed any time in November you get #71. This is to be sure people reading the alternate first chapters of Silk will have access to the entire manuscript. So, take advantage of one of my rare acts of kindness. But we can't afford to run it beyond #72, so you only have until the 5th of December to get this deal.

And now...the mothmen summon me.

Astounded at Her Pre[science],
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Bowie3)
Not much in the mood for an entry today. We'll play a nice game of catch up tomorrow.

My thanks to everyone who has donated mine and [livejournal.com profile] kylecassidy's Drowning Girl Kickstarter project. At this point, it's 141% funded, and we still have twenty-eight days to go. And there are some amazing new rewards, soon to be announced. So, it's not too late. Also, people seem shy about those donations between $1-$14, but they ought not. Every bit helps, plus those donations grant access to the project blog.

Today, I am going to the sea.

Try to go seventy-two hours without using "lol," in any context (unless it's part of an actual word, such as lollipop). Maybe future generations won't thank you, them being doomed and all, but I'll sure be grateful.

Oh! One last thing. From Richard Horton's review of Ellen Datlow's Supernatural Noir, in the August issue of Locus:

Finally, Caitlín R. Kiernan’s ‘‘The Maltese Unicorn’’, which is as stylishly noir as any story here, is about a used bookstore owner who is friendly with a mysterious brothel owner, and thus ends up trying to track down a strange object – a dildo – for her, and gets involved, to her distress, with a beautiful and untrustworthy woman mixed up in the whole business. I thought this the best story in the book, and the story that most perfectly, to my taste, matched the theme.

Booya!

Lastly, thanks to [livejournal.com profile] sovay for news of this wondrous fossil, a plesiosaur found with an unborn plesioaur in its abdomen:

greygirlbeast: (Default)
This will probably come out all higgledy-piggeldy. this journal entry. But I will persevere, nonetheless. Any day that begins by reading a report of new fossils of the Early Miocene-aged bird Pelagornis chilensis, confirming that it had a wingspan of 5.2 meters (about 17 feet), can't be all bad. That's a wingspan roughly double that of an albatross.

And yesterday was a good writing day, thanks to having slept. I hear people who seem to boast about their insomnia. "Oh, hell. I haven't slept since 1979!" You know, like it's a point of pride. Maybe they're just scrabbling for a silver lining, but it never feels that way to me. Anyway, I did 1,319 words on my piece for The Thackery T. Lambshead Cabinet of Curiosities. I should finish it today. It doesn't really have a title yet, but concerns a very grim artifact known to some as the "Castleblakeney Key," and it's written entirely in excerpts from letters, scientific and other academic journals, books, and the like. I think I like it a great deal. It's just been a bitch to write. Not sleeping hasn't helped.

I've decided that the trip to Manhattan needs to be postponed until after the HPLFF. So, early or mid October. I spoke with my agent yesterday. Now I need to get in touch with Peter, and with my editor at Penguin.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, if you've not already. Some of the auctions end tomorrow. Also, Spooky has begun making Halloween decorations, so you may want to have a look at her Dreaming Squid Dollworks & Sundries shop at Etsy.

---

When I was in my late twenties and still living in Birmingham, I ran in certain circles. Circles within circles, for that matter. High society for Southern drag queen débutantes and grande dames, a coterie of queer druggies and hustlers and bartenders. Lesbian bouncers and pool sharks. The day began at sunset and ended at dawn (so winters were preferred). It was another time and another place. It was vile, and it was degrading, and it was beautiful. I find I am capable of being both nostalgic for those circles, and grateful I lived through it all. Many of my friends didn't. They died of one or another of the inevitable hazards of being part of those circles. We all thought we would live forever, and we thought that world would last forever.

There was a man who went by the name of Rocky. I have no idea what his real name was, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't Rocky. I thought he was handsome as hell, and I had a crush on him. He wore leather bomber jackets and styled his hair in a pompadour. He drove these antique Mercedes-Benzes, so I imagined he was wealthy. Turns out he wasn't. He was a chauffeur and a heroin dealer. But I still had a crush on him.

Our paths finally crossed one night, because someone told someone who ran with Rocky that I had a crush on him, and I suppose it amused him. I won't be so arrogant as to imagine it flattered him. So, that night, he drove me around the Southside of Birmingham in one of those beautiful old cars. I was wearing this ridiculous, tattered wedding dress I'd found in a thrift store called Memory Lane. After the drive, we went back to his apartment, and I shot heroin for the first time. It was also the last time, because it was so good, so utterly better-than-sex good, that I knew if I ever did it again, I'd wind up addicted. And I was already on pills and booze. Anyway, I threw up, which wasn't very ladylike, but Rocky was cool about the whole thing. I sat in the same chair for hours, numb and thrumming and staring at the city lights, flying on that dose of smack. Rocky was a gentleman. I can't remember a single goddamn thing we talked about.

I have all these memories in my head, and I think I want to start writing them down. All these people and places that I've hinted at in my books, that I've fictionalized, But at forty-six, I begin to feel the tug of mortality, and I think of those memories being lost forever. I think of what Roy says at the end of Blade Runner, just before he releases the dove: I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched c-beams glitter in the darkness at Tannhäuser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time like tears in rain.

Yeah, sounds pretty sappy. But still. I think I'm going to start writing those things down here, from time to time. I hope I don't embarrass my mother too much. Though, it's hard to imagine that's even still possible these days.
greygirlbeast: (goat girl)
The heat is coming again tomorrow. Already, we're making plans for chilly hiding places. But for now, the day is bright and mild, only 72F and breezy.

Yesterday, I wrote another 1,277 words on "The Maltese Unicorn," and finished the opening part of the frame that, well, frames the story. An interrogation cell somewhere within the Drancy Transit Camp, just outside Paris, in October 1941. Today, I jump back to May 1935 and New York City.

Late yesterday, on our way to the market, I checked the date on the house that caught fire on Thursday (it's got a historical registry plaque). It was built in 1898. For one hundred and twelve years, that house has weathered fuck knows all, and we can only hope it weathers this fire and is soon restored.

Last night, we reinstated the tradition of Kindernacht. At some point, it sort of fell by the wayside, and lately, we find ourselves missing it. So, last night we had hot dogs and tater-tots, then watched Byron Haskin's Robinson Crusoe on Mars (1964) and Edward Ludwig's The Black Scorpion (1957). As for the former, Spooky fell in love with Mona the Monkey, and I marveled at a film that's exactly as old as me. Anyway, a perfect Kid Night double feature. Oh, and the Black Scorpion disc also included the "prehistoric sequence" from Irwin Allen's 1956 documentary, The Animal World, which I'd never seen before. Willis O'Brien and Ray Harryhausen collaborated on it, to bring to life (via stop-motion animation) several dinosaurs, including Ceratosaurus, Stegosaurus, Allosaurus, "Brontosaurus" (i.e., Apatosaurus with a misappropriated camarasaurid skull), Tyrannosaurus, and Triceratops.

Also, a thank you to Barb Moermond, for the marvelous "Ceiling Cthulhu" T-shirt that arrived day before yesterday. The package also contained a chunk of Ordovician limestone, riddled with the fossil remains of gastropods and brachiopods, from her backyard near Madison, Wisconsin. I've been able to determine it came from one of three marines facies, the Galena, Decora, or Platville formations (Middle to Late Ordovician). The rock was deposited in a shallow tropical sea, at a time (roughly 475-445 million years ago) when Wisconsin was part of Laurentia, located a short ways south of the equator. So, thanks, Barb.

Time to spank the platypus.

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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