greygirlbeast: (Default)
I can imagine nothing more wicked than the oft repeated insistence (from readers, publishers, editors, etc.) that an author must always love her or his work, if the work is to have value, during its creation or afterwards.
greygirlbeast: (Eli1)
We are being told the temperatures will rise as high as the mid eighties today, so we may have some semblance of summer. It was decently warm yesterday, May warm. I was able to leave the window in my office open long after midnight.

Today, kittens, whats about some comments? Show me LiveJournal might be on life support, but she ain't quite dead yet.

Good sleep last night, and, by all accounts, a good day yesterday, even if it was non-stop work from the minute I got out of bed (literally) until about 9 p.m. But I'm plagued by some ill disposition. When I woke this morning, it was only anxiety, but now I think it might be anger. And I know the meds are working. Sometimes, our anger is a sane reaction. Oft times, actually. Over breakfast, Spooky and I were discussing the subjective, culturally defined nature of evil. Me, I don't actually believe evil exists. At least, not Evil. Not Big E. Everything we see that might be labeled "evil" is, increasingly, accounted for by psychology, neurology, cultural anthropology, economics, and so forth. Evil is what men and women say it is. Likewise, "good" is no more than that which women and men should happen to deem good from this or that perspective, sane or insane. This isn't nihilism. And I only point this out because there are idiots who might say that it is, not understanding. Humans are best at not understanding. They excel in the realm of not understanding. A million or so years from now, if the last humans get a headstone, it should read "Homo sapiens sapiens, They Couldn't Understand." Yeah, irony intentional. Also, I hope the plaque is placed on Mars, where it'd likely last many hundreds of millions of years, free of the dangers of tectonism, etc.

The first Australian remains (a single vertebra) of a spinosaurid theropod have been discovered near southern Victoria's Cape Otway lighthouse.

Yesterday, the first part of it was spent working on the illustrations section for Two Worlds and In Between, and there were emails from my agent. And then I finally started writing and did the first 2,206 words on Chapter Four of Blood Oranges ("Walking Spanish"). Afterwards, I did a little work on Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart, and decided to subtitle the collection (which I hope will be out next year, but nothing is official yet) 25 Tales of Weird Romance. Still trying to decide whether or not that works. It's cheesy, yes. But I might be aiming for the Cheese of Irony. The cheese of showing ParaRom the Massachusetts State Bird. Anyway, Lee Moyer is interested in doing the cover, and we briefly spoke about it. After dinner, Spooky and I did the very last of the proofreading on the galley pages of Two Worlds and In Between. Then she had to photocopy all the pages we'd corrected, before we send them back (because the mail is even better at losing shit than they are at delivering shit). One must always have a Plan B.

Anyway, a consequence of our having finished with the galleys is that, by special arrangement with Subterranean Press, we are offering a copy of the Two Worlds and In Between ARC as part of Round 2 of the Big Damn eBay Auction. In fact, this is the very copy we used while editing the ARC, and some of the pages have corrections in my hand. You can go directly to the ARC auction by following this link.

I do hope there are people reading this month's selection from Aunt Beast's Book Club, Sara Gruen's Water for Elephants:



Because it's fucking awesome, even without spaceships, aliens, elder gods, or vampires.

And now...that's enough damage for the time being.
greygirlbeast: (Shah1)
The last two days have been a sort of...I'm not sure. Not so much a blur, as that implies they passed quickly, and they didn't. More like a smear. The past two days, I would say, are an utter smear.

I've begun a story called "The Jetsam of Disremembered Mechanics." I wrote 1,048 words on Friday, and only 685 words yesterday. I hope to do better today, as I presently have far too much to write to write this slowly. It doesn't help that I want to get started on The Wolf Who Cried Girl, but first I have to get through at least one short story. That leads me to have fears that I may not be giving the short story my full attention, or that I may rush it, and I am determined to do neither. Also, the Audible.com contracts were signed and sent back on Friday.

We've been reading Greer Gilman's splendid Cloud and Ashes. Last night, we finished the first section and began the second. I can't recommend this book strongly enough, even though I'm nowhere near finishing it. In fact, I've hardly begun. But the language and imagery are that amazing.

---

Back to the bit about the smear of the past two days. I think most of it can be blamed on World of Warcraft. Which is what I've been doing, mostly, when not writing. Our copies of the "Wrath of the Lich King" expansion arrived very late on Friday (thanks to an anonymous benefactor), just before dark. After the 3+ hour installation, we both rolled Death Knight characters, Morskalíi (me) and Morsophelia (Spooky) based on our Draenei alts (Kalíi and Ofelija, respectively). And I have to say this first...wow. Yes, the Death Knight "starting area" is beautiful, and suddenly, after more than a year on WoW, we found ourselves caught up in a game that was not only addictive, but intriguing and well-designed. Ebon Hold, Death's Breach, the attack on the Scarlet Crusade, Havenshire, and New Avalon, the climactic battle at Light's Hope Chapel, all of it was, for the most part, splendidly handled. We played far into the night (well, morning) on Friday (actually Saturday), until after 4 a.m. Then, last night, went back in and played the last part, ending up with the trip to Stormwind to beg for acceptance into the Alliance (and get pelted with rotten bananas). So, yeah. Cool.

However, I must also say that I was extremely disappointed that the whole thing only lasted about three levels (55-57). I was just getting the feel for it, when Darion Mograine turns on the Lich King and tosses the cleansed Ashbringer to Tirion Fordring (who do they pay to come up with these awful names?). Here I've created a character, devoted to the Lich King, and the whole thing is over after about six hours of gameplay. Sure, we still have a new character class, and now there's all of Northrend to play...but that's not the same. I actually spent much of the evening last night just tracking down and slaughtering the Scarlet Crusade, as Morskalíi, because, in my mind, she'd refused the betrayal of Arthas and was still devoted to the original cause of the Death Knights.

But, for me at least, there's a much bigger problem here. When I announced on Friday evening, via Facebook, that we'd received "Wrath of the Lich King," someone commented that by Monday we'd have Level 70 Death Knights. And I thought, well, probably not, but we'll see. Now, though, after playing 55-59, I can't imagine bothering to level Morskalíi any higher. Sure, she's probably the coolest looking character I've ever made, and the spells and weaponry of the Death Knights are great. But the leveling largely involves grinding through quests I've already played, and, more importantly, I simply do not have the free time* to devote that much of my life to WoW. I can't imagine anyone does (though, obviously, millions do). I'd rather go back to Shaharrazad (who, I suppose, is my "main") to finish up in Outland, then head for Northrend with her and Suraa (Spooky's "main"). It seems to me that WoW depends far too much on players who are willing to sacrifice gigantic swaths of their lives to repetition. I'm not in a situation to do that, even if I wanted to...and I don't. So, yeah, I wish the actual Death Knight portion of the game could have gone on at least ten levels. It was grand, watching people shriek and cower and run about in terror at the very sight of you. For once (after more than a year) the battle actually felt like a battle, and the "evil" actually felt like "Evil." Sadly, the end result is nothing much more than a weird paladin/warlock hybrid alt that I haven't time to level. I would even go so far as to say the defeat felt hollow— Mograine's epiphany and all us falling into step behind him —and running off to Stormwind begging for sanctuary...bah. Though I may never play her again, Morskalíi will continue her private war against the Scarlet Crusade, the Forsaken, and humanity in general, as she seeks reunion with her true Master, the Lich King. My alts will make their own moral decisions, thank you very much.

So, no Level 70 (or 80) Draenei Death Knight for me. And Blizzard gets points for the wonderful job they did with those three levels, but I'm taking half those points back for not stretching it out a bit more and finding a more satisfactory way to divorce the Death Knights from the Lich King, if, indeed, that had to happen.

---

Okay. Enough of this nonsense. Time to work.

* As it stands, time played with Shaharrazad equals 30 days, 20 hours, 5 minutes, and 50 seconds (over the course of about 14 months). So, more than a month. For Morskalíi, I played a total of 7 hours, 43 minutes, and 45 seconds (over the course of two days). I cannot help but wonder at all the ways this chunk of my life might have been better spent.
greygirlbeast: (Default)
...because my knurdiness knows no bounds.

The AD&D Alignment Test )

I am fairly happy with this result. And just to be annoying, I tag [livejournal.com profile] wolven, [livejournal.com profile] setsuled (just for dragging Radagast into this), [livejournal.com profile] sovay, [livejournal.com profile] grandmofhelsing, and [livejournal.com profile] tagplazen.

[livejournal.com profile] humglum scored Chaotic Neutral. Somehow, I don't think that's what Starhawk has is mind when she talks about balance.

Also, I'm wondering, how would the Firefly crew score? Mal must surely be Chaotic Good. Jayne might be True Neutral. I'm not at all sure about the others. Shepherd Book? Seems obvious, so it probably isn't. Same with Kaylee. And what about Zoe and River and...

Go to bed, Caitlín.

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greygirlbeast: (Default)
Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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