greygirlbeast: (europa)
In a ludicrous and shameless exercise in the abandonment of empirical thought, embracing wishful thinking and superstition, I am posting the "Snow Miser" song in hope of bringing snow.

greygirlbeast: (Default)
Dreams that do not bear repeating; wield spite, and bury a dream in oblivion. Besides, this is one of those days when I have too many things to write about, not too few:

1. We have just passed that "magic" moment, the eleventh second of the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh year of the Twenty-First Millennium. Of course, I would argue to anyone so feeble minded to read any significance into all those elevens, alas, they actually missed the boat back in the year 1111 A.D.

2. With an emotion gently and precariously balanced between horror and bemusement did I, this morning, read the story of how the Corporation for Travel Promotion, via JWT and The Brand Union, and armed with a budget of 200 million dollars (!!!), plan to solve all of America's PR/image ills with a campaign so stupid it sucks the air from your lungs. Hideous logo aside, the resulting slogan — the "United States of Awesome Possibilities" — almost had me squirting sugar-free Red Bull from my nostrils. Did no one stop and consider that the slogan, an abomination in its own right, can readily be rendered as the acronym U-SAP? No, of course they didn't.

3. Yesterday is a day I would rather not write about. But I will write about it, just to carve another notch into the bedstead of stupid I have experienced. The good part of the day (or at least the "goodish" part) was me writing another 1,334 words on "Ex Libris." But Kathryn is checking the galley pages for The Drowning Girl: A Memoir against our photocopy of the CEM (copy-edited manuscript), to be sure that the copy-editor's changes with which I didn't agree had not been made. And...she discovered that someone had, seemingly at random, made NEW changes to the text. Changes in wording, in punctuation, and so forth. Now, this wasn't my editor, and it couldn't have been the copy-editor, so...have you ever seen a warthog with rabies? Well, then you don't know what I was like for an hour or so yesterday. This means, you see, that every page of text, every word, every punctuation mark, has to be read over again twice (galleys against photocopy of the CEM) before the galleys go back to NYC. Recall, I said yesterday they're due back on November 15th. There was a flurry of email and phone calls. When all was said and done, 1) it had been determined that no one has any idea who made the changes or on whose authority, and 2) that it was a horrible thing that had been done to my book (like I didn't know this from the beginning), and 3) that the production manager, being the saintly sort, would extend to deadline to the 21st of November, so that Kathryn has time to read every single page over again, twice. Anyway...yeah. Bullshit. But my thanks to my agent and my editor for helping me through this mess.

Later, after the new deadline had been established, granting me and Spooky those measly four extra days, Spooky and I read through what I've written so far on "Ex Libris." By the way, Subterranean Press will be publishing "Ex Libris," together with "The Yellow Alphabet," in a hardback cloth-bound "mini-collection," The Yellow Book (yes, a nod to Chambers), which will come FREE with the limited edition of Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart.

4) I may have mentioned that the ebook pirates are nipping at my heels again. Well, technically, they're nipping at the heels of my publisher. For my part, I'm ready to wash my hands of this whole ebook fiasco. Let the devil take the hindmost and all that. I just don't care anymore. NMP, because I choose for it not to be. Hey, this strategy is working just fine for the United States of Awesome Possibilities, in their approach to the country's absence of affordable healthcare, and towards the homeless, and poverty, too. So, it can work for me and ebook pirates. NMP.

5) And here we are on Veteran's Day, which I do not recognize. Instead, I continue to recognize Armistice Day, and on that note, as I do every year, I will yield the floor to the late Mr. Vonnegut:

I will come to a time in my backwards trip when November eleventh, accidentally my birthday, was a sacred day called Armistice Day. When I was a boy, all the people of all the nations which had fought in the First World War were silent during the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour of Armistice Day, which was the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

It was during that minute in nineteen hundred and eighteen, that millions upon millions of human beings stopped butchering one and another. I have talked to old men who were on battlefields during that minute. They have told me in one way or another that the sudden silence was the voice of God. So we still have among us some men who can remember when God spoke clearly to mankind.

Armistice Day has become Veterans’ Day. Armistice Day was sacred. Veterans’ Day is not.

So I will throw Veterans’ Day over my shoulder. Armistice Day I will keep. I don’t want to throw away any sacred things.

What else is sacred? Oh, "Romeo and Juliet," for instance.

And all music is.


And So It Goes,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Default)
And today is 10/10/10. Read into or out of that what you will. Having little, if any, use for numerology, I make nothing whatsoever of it, except that it is a calendric curiosity and inevitability. Like 9/9/09, or 8/8/08, and so forth. I wonder who thinks the sky is falling today?

---

Yesterday I finished the introduction for Two Worlds and In Between. Well, at least I hope that I finished it. I don't like writing these sorts of things. Anyway, it comes in at 1,541 words. I take George Orwell to task over that silly and too often parroted comment, "Good prose is like a windowpane.” But, also, I think writing instructors often fail to present the quotation in the context of the essay it has been taken from ("Why I Write," June 1946, originally published in the final issue of Gangrel, Summer 1946). Above all else, Orwell was a propagandist, which is not a bad thing. He had messages that needed speaking. And he needed them spoken very clearly (though, he was still awfully fond of metaphor, hence Animal Farm). But to think this applies to all prose, it was arrogant and short sighted of Orwell to think this, and idiotic for writers today to follow this edict.

I also cleaned up the keynote speech I gave at the HPLFF, because S.T. Joshi has asked to publish it (I can't remember where).

And that was work yesterday. I sat here and wrote and edited while Spooky went to South County to see her parents and her brother.

Oh, and thanks to Cat Conley ([livejournal.com profile] catconley, "The Awkward Marmoset") for sending me a copy of Greer's Moonwise. It was a pleasant surprise.

Last night there was far too much CoX. [livejournal.com profile] stsisyphus showed up, and may even have joined out weird little group of vampires and supernatural ne'erdowells.

---

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, which include the "napovel," written in the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport during our captivity there. All bids are much appreciated. We not only have to pay the taxes this month, we also have to consider the fact that both my iPod and cellphone were fried during the trip to Portland.

It's something of a mystery, and I know fuck-all about electronics. Neither will hold a charge now, and the iPod actually appears to have been wiped clean. I suspect my shoulder bag, at some point, came into contact with a strong magnetic field. I just don't know when it might have happened, or where. But as I rely heavily on both for writing, they will have to be replaced or repaired very soon. It may be the lithium-ion batteries only need to be replaced. I just don't know (and if you know anything about these sorts of conundrums, please say so).

---

I've been getting some good feedback on "John Four," which felt like a sort of story I haven't written before. So I was very nervous about it.

---

Somehow I forgot Sonya's ([livejournal.com profile] sovay) birthday. So, happy belated birthday, Sonya.

And now, more photos from Portland. I was amazed at the lushness of the neighborhood where we were lodging. Everything was green. I think of Rhode Island as being lush, but it can't compare to what I saw of Portland. So, here are some glimpses of the lushness and greenery:

H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival, Part 4 )
greygirlbeast: (chi3)
Please. No matter what your religious background or how righteous your intentions, DO NOT FRELLING PRAY FOR ME. Do not waste your breath asking your god or gods or goddesses for favours on my behalf. Do not bow down to stone idols or crusty images of the Virgin Mary on grilled cheese sandwiches and prostrate yourself in an effort to make things easier on me. No, I'm not kidding. It really, really pisses me off.

Why am I on about this tonight? Because.

I refer you to an entry I made back on April 3rd, "You can pick your friends, but you can't pick your enemies, or, it would seem, your audience." Oh, hell, I'll just repost it here. I wrote:

I sort of hate to come back after three days away from LJ/Blogger and cause a ruckus right off the bat, or right out of the gate, or whatever, but something's been bothering me for some time now. I resolved yesterday to deal with it, as tactfully as possible (which probably won't be very). It concerns a question which I've raised here before, in passing, regarding, well, realizing that one has readers that one would just as soon not have. And that's an inherently strange thing to say, I know. On the one hand, I need all the readers I can get. But on the other, I must admit that sometimes I wish readers who find me distasteful (or whatever) would spend their time elsewise. But...I'm being vague, and I have something specific in mind. A couple or three weeks back, I was checking who's reading the blog (I do this via Joule, because it's often helpful to see who's interested in what's being said here). Anyway, I have acquired one reader who, on or about the day she "friended" me, wrote of my fiction:

Too dark (see above) – I don’t know if I ever should read her work again. I haven’t since I’ve become a Christian – no light and hardly any air is a bad intellectual and spiritual diet.

and

would be ambrosia if she would breathe and create from heaven’s breath – as is, pretty amazing, but inhaling her work was always being filled with such a dark and dank cloud, a bad humor.

I found it very odd that this individual (who I'm not naming, but who will surely recognise her words) would feel this way about my writing and yet "friend" me. I mean, isn't that just sort of odd? Anyway, I checked her journal again a couple of weeks later and found the following, which she wrote after having seen V for Vendetta:

I mean that as a writer. I don’t want to enshrine and glorify darkness, I want to focus and craft form for light, give people something to see through.

It was a film with a very political agenda. It was bloody and pathological, too, and it twisted and blurred goodness, and made sexual perversion morally equivalent to married, heterosexual love, which bugged me not because I don’t love people involved in those lifestyles, but because (I’ve been in them, and) it’s not so, and so it’s not fair to sell people a bright lie while you draw them deeper into bondage.

To which I must reply that it's one thing if you don't want to read what I write, if you cannot see that, almost always, I am writing about the light, if only from very dark places, but it's quite another thing to be a homophobic zealot using Xtianity as your shield. To put it bluntly, I really don't want this person, or anyone who would sympathize with the vile things this person has written, the bits I've quoted, reading my stories or novels or even this journal. Indeed, this upset me so badly I have considered making the journal "friends only." But that rather defeats the purpose, as this journal is not my private journal and is being written for my readers. I regret that LJ does not permit me to block LJ users from reading as well as from posting. Am I being unreasonable? I'm emphatically not saying that this person should be forbidden from publicly saying the things she's said, though I find them loathsome and hateful, striking at the very heart of who and what I am. I merely wish she did not read this journal. Frankly, it gives me the creeps, knowing that she's reviewing my thoughts and judging them by the narrow yardstick of her fundamentalist religious beliefs. It is my hope that she will read this and "unfriend" me at once. Of course, that doesn't mean she might not still be reading, but at least she will not be doing so disguised as a "friend." I feel that I only need tolerate intolerance just so far.

---

Now, on September 22nd, I see (via Joule) that the very same creepy person, who has not "unfriended" me, whom I'd really rather not read my journal (or my books) wrote:

Oh yeah, this is way cool: I was praying for God to help Caitlin Kiernan have less nightmares, and her post today says she slept better and the nightmares weren't as severe.

No. This is not "way cool." This is just dumb. And it's sad. This is the worst sort of "magical thinking," an exquisite leaping to unfounded conclusions, and a damn fine example of someone who cannot quite fathom the relationship between cause and effect. Which is to say, dear, I'm sorry to burst your glittery Xtian bubble, but the reason that my nightmares improved and I slept better was because I took the imidazopyridine Ambien (zolpidem), which not only makes it easier for me to sleep, it also has the rather fortunate side-effect of making it difficult for me to recall my nightmares. I've been on and off Ambien since 2003. I never take it for very long at a time because a) I don't need another addiction and b) it's expensive.

Personally, I think praying for someone you know full well doesn't want to be prayed for, especially not by you, is damned inconsiderate. And no, it's not the same as someone wishing me well. It's not like this person said, "Oh, I do wish Caitlín Kiernan's nightmares would get better." She actually believes that she talked her god into getting inside my head and fiddling about with my psyche and making my bad dreams go away, and now she's out there bragging about it!

May we here pause to consider the concepts of spiritual violation? Psychological rape? It doesn't matter that I know she's just some loonie who's had way too much Jesus juice and way to little critical thinking and that I know the true reason why, in that instance, the dreams weren't so bad. It's still offensive, and I would like her to stop. Please. Now. I'm asking nicely. Go away. Leave me alone. Take your ignorant, silly superstitions and burden someone else with them (if you must).

Besides, I'll have you know I get some of my best stuff from nightmares.

Long has it been rumoured (and sometimes stated outright) that Caitlín R. Kiernan isn't a Very Nice Person. And I'm sure what I've just said will likely be no small bit of evidence to bolster those claims. But, you know. What the frell. I'm tired and I'm annoyed and right now I honestly do not care if the "blogosphere" consigns me to some dustbin of the perpetually cranky and ungrateful.

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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