greygirlbeast: (stab)
There are days that are bad. There are days that manage to be worse than bad. And then there was yesterday. And all I will further deign to say on the subject (as discretion may not be the better part of valor, but it can sometimes be the author's best friend) is that there are times when the legal departments of major publishers are capable of demonstrating a degree of bone-headedness rarely exhibited outside the pachycephalosaurid dinosaurs. My great thanks to Merrilee and Anne for getting me through the day, and apologies to Kathryn, who had to endure the full brunt of my righteous indignation at Ground Zero. What the hell am I on about? When a band and a band's manager and a band's legal representation says, in writing, "Caitlín R. Kiernan has permission to quote our song in her forthcoming novel The Drowning Girl," odds are pretty goddamn good that said band and manager and legal representation have the authority to grant said permission. But, all's well that ends well, right? Okay, well my damaged schedule and colon might disagree, and it's not usual that I'm drinking in the afternoon, or that I have more than a single cigarette in a day. But...it was that sort of a day, and then some.

Please, today, comment, kittens. Just be kindly.

I'm lost, and the shadows keep on changing.

Here's a very fine and thoughtful review of Two Worlds and In Between: The Best of Me (Volume One), and it might surprise you how much I agree with it. Well, except the reviewer's feelings about narrative structure and the conventional endings of stories. But, yes, good review. Also, I think I shall be canonized as "Aunt Beast," which suits me fine. At least, this month it does.

So, yesterday was devoured by nonsensical bullshit. I've established that, yes. When it began, Kathryn and I were making another effort to complete the line edits to Blood Oranges. We will finish that today, or all the world be damned. There's only 20 pages remaining, for fuck's sake, maybe half an hour of work. And I will not be dissuaded by clueless lawyers!

Not sucky things about yesterday! They deserve mention. I received a copy of Michael Zulli's on beyond sublime book The Fracture of the Universal Boy (six years in the writing and drawing, and another Kickstarter success story!). You must own this beautiful book. What else didn't suck? Well, Vince Locke's illustration for "Latitude 41°21'45.89"N, Longitude 71°29'0.62"W." (Sirenia Digest #71). Yesterday, I discovered Unwoman, and that totally didn't suck. Last night, [livejournal.com profile] readingthedark came over, and that didn't suck at all. Our conversation about "sport fucking," that totally fucking rocked, and might be the seed for my next SF story. And my HUGE box of comp copies of Two Worlds and In Between: The Best of Me (Volume One) arrived via UPS.

Oh, and you need to see Helena Bonham Carter as Miss Havisham, in director Mike Newell's forthcoming adaptation of Great Expectations. Beautimous.

Anyway, I'm running dreadfully late today, thanks to yesterday, and the fact that I had a very early and long talk with my Dark Horse editor this ayem, and still have a modest hillock of email to answer beore Spooky and I can be done with Blood Oranges and get it off to my agent before day's end. But! I will leave you with two more astounding stills courtesy [livejournal.com profile] kylecassidy, from the October shoot for The Drowning Girl. These are especially excellent, and, I daresay, they almost show too much of what's to come:

Imp, Eva, and Abalyn )
greygirlbeast: (Default)
0. Comment. Please comment. I need the distraction.

0.1 I'm not replying to Facebook comments, unless they appear here on LJ. Sorry. I hate Facebook.

1. No, I'm not a "horror writer." I'm not sure who does and doesn't want to wear that label, and I don't care. We each make these decisions for ourselves, and that's how it ought to be. I don't much mind labels (as I've said before), if they are accurate labels. But calling me a "horror writer" ignores an enormous amount of my writing, and, worse, has the unfortunate effect of my being overlooked by fantasy and sf readers and editors who aren't into horror. I write dark and urban fantasy (the real stuff, not that PR crap), science fiction, weird fiction, erotica, and what the hell ever. Lots of times, it's horrifying. This does not make me a "horror writer" sensu stricto.

2. Okay, look. Either we, as a society, stop sexualizing the kids, or we, as a society, stop being paranoid and screaming kiddie porn at every innocent bathtub photo and every faint whiff of underage (and I include here reasonable teenage) sexuality. because, it's one way or the other. Not fucking both. I am speaking, specifically of Abercrombie & Fitch's "padded bikini 'push-up'" bra for very young girls. And, by the way, as I was writing this, Abercrombie & Fitch yanked the page selling the bra in question.

3. Yesterday, I wrote 1,489 words on "Some Random Notes Before a Fatal Crash." I might find the conclusion today. I need to, because I've got to pull Sirenia Digest #64 together. On Saturday, I'll be in Boston with [livejournal.com profile] kylecassidy figuring out the author's photo for Two Worlds and In Between.

4. Very good news regarding The Drowning Girl. I've officially secured (mostly through the efforts of [livejournal.com profile] readingthedark) permission from Radiohead to reprint lines from "There, There (The Bony King of Nowhere)" in the novel, lines that are crucial to the book. Penguin legal has approved the whole thing, so its a go. I'm still working with R.E.M.'s management, to gain permission to quote "Find the River," and it looks like that's also going to work out.

5. My thanks to Steven Lubold, Cassandra Brewster, and Sonoye Murphy for the recent and highly appreciated care packages. You guys absolutely fucking rock.

Contemplating Hurt,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (chidown)
Admittedly, I've never cared much for either the Legendary Pink Dots or Edward Ka-Spel's solo work. Spooky, however, is a great admirer of both, and last night she read me the following lyrics (printed in Ka-Spel's book Love and Loud Colours, 2002, though the lyrics date from 1989)...because, you know, I needed something to fucking cheer me up. They spoke directly to that terrible space where I am right now, and so I'm posting them here:

Weeping like the ghost of winter, we watch our tears kiss ash and turn to steam. We walk on hot coals where a stream meandered. Tarred and tanned. We flex and count the tumors on our hands - spreading swiftly now. For this, we've waited just a lifetime.

Sun blessed mirror shaded mad dogs. Blow a kiss we'll all fall over. Hunting the oasis but there's only cola - sensurround. A technicolour thrill - It costs a fortune, so it must be real. For just a little sip, we'll keep waiting (just a lifetime).

And some of us went underground. We dug a hole and settled down. We waited for the gentle sound of steady rain to soak the ground and rattle on our ventilator. Guess the time we sat there waiting. Yes, you guessed! We waited just a lifetime.

And dragons walked the earth again; paraffin was free. A fire-eater went insane and torched the final tree. Then one fine day the planet crumbled, just 'cause someone sneezed. For this, we waited just a lifetime.
greygirlbeast: (Default)
Just some lyrics that have been going round in my head all day...

lyrics )
greygirlbeast: (Fran3)
I'm sitting here, trying to wake up, and David Bowie's singing "Planet Earth is blue, and there's nothing I can do," and that sent me straight back to the continental-drift dream (see yesterday's entry), and somehow that got me thinking about James Lovelock and his Gaia Hypothesis (and really, hypothesis here should appear with quotation marks), and that led to thoughts of Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky, who was hypothesizing along these same lines long before Lovelock, and thinking about Vernadsky led to thinking about a song on the new Decemberists CD, "When the War Came," which inevitably led to thoughts of Vavilov (Nikolai Ivanovich), and then that reminded me of Vavilov Crater in the Hertzsprung Basin on Mars, which led me right back around to thoughts of the continental-drift dream. All in about five minutes, which is a fair look at how my brains rolls round and round before the coffee comes to rein it in.

By now, though, I've moved along to the Smashing Pumpkins:

Time is never time at all.
You can never, ever leave without leaving a piece of youth.
And our lives are forever changed,
We will never be the same.
The more you change, the less you feel.


Anyway...

Yesterday isn't a blur. It's a smudge. There are hardly any bits worth saving, much less mentioning here. I never did say anything about coming upon Eryut Village in Final Fantasy XII, did I? That was Saturday night...or Sunday morning. Oh, and thank you, Leh'agvoi, for all the drad new Fran icons. But I was saying, Eryut in the Golmore Jungle. Think Lothlórien relocated in the Amazonian canopy, if the Amazon were on some other planet where everything wants to kill you, and if the elves were digitigrade and had long rabbit-like ears. The place from which Fran came. A whole frelling forest full of Viera. If I am entirely mistaken about the mortality of mind and some conscious portion of ourselves remains after death, I should very much like it if Eryut were my Heaven. Gorgeous. The trees dripped with their haughtiness. I never wanted to leave. But leave I did, last night, to journey on through Golmore, fight a dragon thingy that looked like a moldy, moss-covered ankylosaur, and wind my way through the high, snowy wastes of the Paramina Rift to Mt. Bur-Omisace. By then it was two a.m., bedtime for nixars. That was the only bit of yesterday worth not forgetting.

There was a bit of talk here recently about how I'm not keeping this blog to pass on Sage Advice from the trenches regarding How To Become A Published Writer. However, I think I will now break with my own tradition and offer one unsightly dollop of advice. When you begin to sell stories and maybe even novels, you will be asked to write biographies of yourself. No, it's true. Generally, writers write their own little bio blurbs, the ones that you see on the dust jackets and so forth. It's sad, but true. But that's not the point. They point is that when — or, rather, if — you find yourself writing such a fifty -word encapsulation of your Life Until Now, take care. Think before you commit those thoughts to publication. Choose your words carefully. In parsing the fiction that is your personal history, consider how This May Look a few years further down the road. For groan you will, kupo, if you stumble into this all willy-nilly and topsy-turvy (as did I). For example, if you've worked as a hooker and intend to include that information, say that you were a hooker, not a "sex industry worker." If you were a stripper, do not say you were an "exotic dancer." And if you were a drag queen, do not say that you were, instead, a "female illusionist." Likewise, if you were a garbage man, do not say you were an "urban sanitation technician." If you were a drug dealer, resist the urge to say you were a "freelance recreational pharmaceutical consultant." Do not try to pretty up the past with double-speak. Just open your mouth and spit out the dirty truth. In the long run, you'll be glad you did. Better yet, just leave all this silly dren out and stick to the pertinent facts. Well, the "facts." No one wants to read the Truth, but neither do they want to read wordy attempts to dodge the truth. Avoid that which is irrelevant.

(Reading this back to Spooky, she just asked, "Now from whence to did that come?" to which I replied, "Shut up, you'll see in a moment.")

Do not include the name of your pet hamster, unless you want a terrifying phone call from Harlan Ellison.

Avoid politics.

And pause to consider, when making soaring declarations and proclamations of personal belief that will be printed in these bios, that fifteen or twenty or fifty years from now, someone may read said bio, and even though you are no longer head-over-hills in love with, oh, say Discordianism or the South Beach Diet, that's still what it will say, if that's what you wrote. And most readers perceive an author's bio, regardless of the year it was written, as The Present. Case in point, in the biography for To Charles Fort, With Love, I say that I am a transhumanist. I put it down for the benefit of all posterity (if any). And yet, having now read much more widely from transhumanist literature I discover that I am not a transhumanist after all. Indeed, I discover that, ultimately, I find transhumanism such a generally loathsome, damn near idiotic -ism, almost completely at odds with my deepest beliefs, that I feel I owe the whole world an apology for ever have included myself among them. I may have meant parahumanism (we'll see), but really, what I may have meant is neither here nor there, because it says "transhumanist" and it always will. It's in print, at least until the big space rock vaporizes all examples of The Written Word and I am at last freed from my unfortunate association with that spot of anthropocentric Apollonian nonsense. Stop and think. Blogs may be deleted or revised*. Printed author's bios are forever (or at least until the coming of said space rock).

You don't have to thank me. At least not all of you at once.

Yes, it's going to be an absinthe day...

*Unless they are illegally archived somewhere you cannot access. Ahem.

"Medusa"

Aug. 13th, 2006 01:00 am
greygirlbeast: (HelloSquid)
These lyrics have been stuck in my head since yesterday...

When all you have left are your memories,
And diamonds and pearls for company,
I'll be sailing to Saint Lucia on the ocean breeze,
With the moon and my scars for company.
In your bedroom you keep an iron cage
Where a blackbird sings her freedom song,
For you know the true value of having slaves;
They sing the saddest of songs.
Medusa, you robbed me of my youth,
Abandoned me on the tropic of solitude.
Seducer of the shipwrecked and forlorn,
You told me to undress,
Then crowned my head with thorns.
Medusa, you robbed me of my youth,
Abandoned me on the tropic of solitude.
Seducer of the shipwrecked and forlorn,
You told me to get dressed,
Then turned my heart to stone.

(Brendan Perry)
greygirlbeast: (new chi)
So, yes. It's true. We are now accepting subscriptions for the monthly erotic vignette subscription service. Please read the FAQ before subscribing and feel free to ask questions. The first issue will actually be the discarded original draft of Chapter Three of Daughter of Hounds ("Wild Things"), which I had to almost entirely rewrite when my previous editor lowered the 150K-word limit boom upon my head and the whole Sadie/Dogtown/Reverend William Welcome subplot had to be shelved for, well, perhaps another novel. The first issue should go out to subscribers sometime next week. The second, which will begin the erotica proper, will go out on December 10th. Please click here to subscribe. Thanks.

Today, I am completely obsessed with Gravenhurst's song "Cities Beneath the Sea," and hence, I am posting the lyrics, which I have been singing all day. It's beautiful and sad and terrible and ever so slightly Lovecrafty and so on and so forth:

I live on both sides of the mirror.
I feel the pain that destruction brings.
I want to help put everything in its place.
I want to destroy everything.

There are cities underneath cities,
Cities beneath the sea.
In deserted towns and burial mounds
There is beauty that no one will see.
And the magic of stones, when taken back home,
Is left on the beach.

The dead see through the eyes of the living.
The dead know all of our names,
Powerless to stop us repeating the same careless mistakes that they made.

Chorus (x2)

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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