greygirlbeast: (Default)
Here in Providence it's a balmy 53˚Fahrenheit, bright and sunny.

And today, as the world "falls back," I remain upright, and Caitlín Standard Time begins for the eighth year. All this actually means is that I prefer Daylight Savings Time and so remain on it all year round. I'm not a morning person, and this way I keep more sunlight in the evening during the loathsome winters. CST has become even more important since the move north. By the way, if you hate DST, and find CaST bizarre, I truly do not care, so there's no need to say so here.

Yesterday was an eight-hour workday, almost all of it spent answering email and getting Sirenia Digest #71 ready to be PDFed, and then I sent it off to Gordon ([livejournal.com profile] thingunderthest) for the actual PDFing. And I also did an interview regarding the BIG DARK HORSE TEASE. The interview will appear online Wednesday, same day as Dark Horse spills more specifics. I'll keep you posted. There are many interviews in my immediate future. Anyway, yes, very busy Saturday (weekends, what are those?). Alas, oftentimes, the first PDF of a Sirenia Digest has errors, and a second is necessary. But, still, I should think the digest will likely go out this evening. Not too late to subscribe and get in on #71! It's cheap!

Today, I need to begin the long short story, or the novelette, or short novella, or what-the-hell-ever that I'm doing for the chapbook that will accompany the limited edition of Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart. By the way, that chapbook will include not only this new, long story, but "The Yellow Alphabet." No release date yet. I'm guessing Summer 2012.

Speaking of subpress, I'm getting a lot of reports from people who ordered Two Worlds and In Between from Amazon.com, who are now receiving emails stating "Due to a lack of availability from our suppliers, we will not be able to obtain the following item(s) from your order..." That sort of shit. I have no idea why this is happening, but I do know it's happened before with Amazon and subpress editions, which is why I never link to the Amazon pages for those books, but directly to the subpress pages. I've said before, to be sure you get the book, always order these volumes directly from Subterranean Press. All I can do is notify subpress that it's happened...again. Which, of course, solves no one's problem, now that the book is completely sold out. I can apologize (not that it's my fault), and I do, but I know that doesn't get anyone the book they pre-ordered, expecting that pre-order to be filled. Honestly, the situation pisses me off, but there's nothing I can do. When subpress begins taking orders for Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart, ignore Amazon. Order directly from the publisher.

Now, if you did order directly from subpress, and your order hasn't arrived yet, be patient. It will. All the copies are not sent out at once. Subpress handles too many titles to do that. Pre-ordering doesn't mean you get your book early; it means you get your book. I am the author, and all but two of my comp copies only arrived day before yesterday.
---

Last night, we streamed last week's episode of American Horror Story from Hulu (Zachary "Husband #1" Quinto!), then finished Season Four of Californication. For my part, as much as I adore this series, I'd have been happy with it ending at the ending with Hank driving, literally, off into the sunset in that last episode of Season Four. The story may not have been finished (no story ever is), but it was a good place to stop telling it. However...seems like there will be fifth and sixth seasons, though, at least, the story will skip ahead two years. Then we read the prologue and first chapter of House of Leaves (because it's November), then I read some more, and was unable to sleep until almost 4 ayem (perhaps your 3 ayem), only to wake at ten ayem (possibly your 9 ayem). So, I'm not at my best today. Of course, I probably will never be at my best again. My best probably ended in 1995. Those people who tell you that "40 is the new 30" are either a) seriously deluded, b) have amazingly good health care, or both.

We just realized we missed the Rasputina in Boston on October 28th, because we were at the Iron Pour. At least we did something. However, I will make the VNV Nation in Boston on December 4th. Stalk me there and die.

And now...the words.

Next,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Default)
Still overcast, but warmer today. Oh, wait. I see a glimmer of sunlight.

Yesterday, I wrote 847 words and found THE END of "At the Reef." I don't know why I've been referring to it as "On the Reef," because that's not the title.

Last night, we were planning to go to AS220 to see Brown Bird play (with three other bands), but after the writing, and a bath, and dinner, I discovered I was too tired to get dressed, much less leave the House. It pissed me off. But I can't be surprised. I just wrote two short stories (or vignettes, I'm not sure) in seven days. Not to mention the usual background writerly work. So, anyway, I wound up in bed, too exhausted to do anything but read and moan about being so old and tired. Oh, and then I slept like crap last night.

At least we can still see Brown Bird in November, when they open for Raspuntina's upcoming Providence show. Maybe I won't be exhausted that night. I am truly in love with Brown Bird. I want to marry this band and have their children.

---

What did I read? Three more stories from [livejournal.com profile] ellen_datlow and [livejournal.com profile] nihilistic_kid's Haunted Legends: Carrie Laben's "Face Like a Monkey," Gary A. Braunbeck's "Return to Mariabronn," and John Mantooth's "Shoebox Train Wreck." There is a truly sublime line from the latter. "The dead really don't haunt the living. The living haunt the dead." One of those lines I wish I'd written. But I didn't. I can only admire the skill of the author who did.

This anthology's getting some weird reviews, people complaining because, they say, it purports to be a book of ghost stories, but some of the stories aren't ghost stories. Now, to begin with, Haunted Legends doesn't claim to be exclusively a collection of ghost stories (sensu stricto). The theme of the book is actually urban legends. At the very top of the cover is printed "Local legends and ghost stories..." Note that "local legends" comes first. That said, many of the stories actually are ghost stories, more than I would have expected from an anthology for which the authors were asked to write stories based on urban legends, and not specifically ghost stories. Book reviewers who can't bother to read the books they review need to stop reviewing books.

---

Today I wish I could stay in bed. But I need to address the copyeditors queries for "The Collier's Venus (1893)," which will soon appear in [livejournal.com profile] ellen_datlow's Naked City anthology. And answer email. And read over and correct "And the Cloud That Took the Form" and "At the Reef." So, yeah. Work. The platypus is a harsh mistress.

Congratulations to William Lindblad of Plano, Texas, who won both my items in the KGB readings benefit auction.

As I write this, the podcast poll stands at 97.3% in favor (143 votes) and 2.7% (4 votes) against. The four who voted against did an admirable job of explaining why they voted against my doing podcasts. Most likely, I'll do one at some point in the next few weeks and see how it goes. And then figure out if I'll make a habit of podcasts.

---

Harlan Ellison is selling his first typewriter, a beautiful old Remington. As I said on Facebook yesterday, Harlan has done me many kindnesses and was a tremendous influence on my own work. I consider this typewriter invaluable, but would happily pay five times the $5,000 it has been insured for, if only I had that sort of money. If only I were a wealthy woman. I can only hope it goes to a museum or collector who appreciates its value and will care for it.

---

Last night Spooky pontificated on the relative merits of various brands of pumpkin ale. Me, I don't drink the stuff, but she loves it. She decalres Dogfish Head the best, and Wolaver's the second best, but isn't impressed with Smuttynose (despite the cute seal on the bottle). I think she's indifferent towards Saranac. She says, "It's weak."

A quote now from yesterday's entry: Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, as nothing has changed since yesterday. That is, the IRS hasn't decided we don't have to pay taxes, after all. That is, they haven't sent back the check Spooky wrote. Speaking of Spooky, I reiterate, all those cool Halloween thingumies in her Dreaming Squid Dollworks and Sundries Etsy shop will be taken down come November 1st.

Last of all (until the next entry), though I love WoW, I'm sickened by the kids (at least, I hope they're kids) who spew "faggot" and "queer" and "gay" and "homo" over the various chat channels, employing these words as though they are the worst imaginable insults. They swamp the chat channels with this shit. It's almost enough the make me quit the game. I've disabled almost all the chat channels, and I mute the individuals. But still. Are gamers today, as a group, really this homophobic?
greygirlbeast: (Default)
Thanks to the new (very expensive) medications, my insomnia is vastly better than it's been for years. But last night, I was awake until sometime after four, and then only got to sleep because I'd taken Ambien (which I dislike doing). Then I woke from a nightmare at eight, to construction noise from next door. And that was it. No getting back to sleep for me. I got up so the tossing and turning wouldn't wake Kathryn. So...now I have to manage to stay awake until tonight.

Yesterday, I did as little work as possible. But I did do a small bit of last minute editing on "The Maltese Unicorn" and sent it away to the anthology's editor. But mostly it was a "day off," after the insanity of Sunday and the big push to finish editing the short story.

I read Chapter Four of Gaining Ground by Jenny Clack ("Setting the Stage: The Devonian World"). I read the first part of Tales of the Slayers (Dark Horse), and especially liked "Righteous" by Joss Whedon and Tim Sale. Spooky made chili for dinner. Afterwards, we watched two short films by Nacho Cerdà, who directed The Abandoned (2006)— Genesis (1998) and Aftermath (1994). Both were very well done, though I was far more impressed by Genesis. Then we played WoW, leveling Gnomnclature and Klausgnomi to 30, before switching back to our main toons, Shaharrazad and Suraa, who we left stranded in Icecrown a couple of months back. That was yesterday. Oh, and the toilet broke. No, wait. That was day before. Night before last. Whichever.

Spooky got the new Rasputina CD yesterday, Sister Kinderhook, though I've yet to listen to it.

I know it's the future, and the world sucks extra hard now and all, but...my life would be at least 3% less annoying if the internet were not plagued by idiotic emoticons. Right now, I think the worst offender is— XD —though, I have to admit— o.0 —is a close fucking second. Oh, and— <.<, >.>, and >.< —are also nigh unto unbearable. These emoticons pretty much brand the user a total moron, even if the user is, say, Stephen Hawking. I actually sort of miss the days of ;-P and :-) and :-(. Things were so much simpler back then.

There are people on Earth, right now, who honestly believe all sentences should end with "lol."

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, which end this afternoon. Thanks.

Er...and I have a few photographs from the Museum of Comparative Zoology, before the day went to crap:

13 June 2010 )
greygirlbeast: (grey)
What's remarkable is not how much I complain in this journal. It's how little I complain in this journal. The more the years pile up on the far side of -0, the less I see the point in getting myself bent out of shape about this or that or what the hell ever, and the less I see the point in publicly broadcasting my annoyance. That said, I am now going to complain.

What the fuck's with this weird depersonalization/reductionism going on in America (and elsewhere, I expect), whereby almost anything and everything is described as product (plural and singular). I see someone talking about making cookies on television, and they don't say, "We want to make the best cookie we can." No. They say, "We want to make the best product we can." And that product is not to be sold and eaten by people, or even customers, but by consumers. You see it online, with webzines talking about content, not articles, stories, photographs, etc. I see it in publishing, with everything coming down to a matter of how many units have been moved, rather than how many books have been bought. I'm not even sure precisely why this makes me so angry, except somehow it seems to work to devalue everything and everyone. It all becomes only interchangeable bits, with little or no intrinsic value.

And I do think words matter, and are not to be be swapped about willy-nilly. Sure, shorthand can be convenient, but when it stops being shorthand and becomes common speech, meaning is lost.

Yeah, whatever. I mean, nobody much seems to mind, right?

Meanwhile...

They illuminate the land,
and they make me think of you.
What sunk silently to the depths of a mystery?
A clue that only one scientist knew?

Who knew that the sky is now found to contain
Benzene and methane and chalk,
And bloody mud, muddy blood from the sky,
From the sickly sweet wings of Edith's Checker-Spot Butterfly?
They die in the ocean.
Their legs are broken.
The rain slows their flight as it soaks their wings.

In microphone, we'll listen for thunder.
The telephone will dial a number,
To deliver a, a clearer picture of weird wet weather.
This puts all previous discoveries in doubt.
These are the things we have theories about.

Overhead, two sky titans they collide in slow motion.
Then, over the Ice Tongue, fluid flows.
A one thousand foot thick chunk of sediment is exposed.
Your own special home.

A choking, vapor-laced haze obscured by acid rain,
Enveloping everything, on the edge of the Milky Way.


— Rasputina, "A Retinue of Moons"
greygirlbeast: (chi2)
Another eight hours this morning. I think my body has finally rebelled against my mind and is forcing sleep upon me. If that is the case, I am grateful to this body (and rarely have I ever voiced that sentiment). Now, if I could just find the wake-up switch.

Yesterday, I wrote a very respectable 1,304 words on The Dinosaurs of Mars. And pondered exactly what would (in detail) happen to the human body if suddenly exposed to Mars' mean surface-level atmospheric pressure of only 600 Pa, or less than 1% of Earth's.

We waited until well after dark to take our walk, and so missed the worst of the heat. The moon was wonderfully bright. Afterwards, we indulged in the pleasant familiarity of Firefly and Deadwood. Two eps of the former ("Our Mrs. Reynolds" and "Trash") and one of the latter ("Deadwood").

I spent a couple of very frustrating hours in Second Life. It pains me to see the waste of so much creative potential. It galls me to encounter dozens and dozens and dozens of beautiful, ingeniously constructed worlds that are little more than "ghost towns." I begin to suspect that Second Life is one of those things that humanity is simply not yet, in general, ready for, and maybe it never will be.

Good and welcomed comments to yesterday's entry, regarding Sirenia Digest #19 and other things, so thanks for that. More today would not be so bad. Talking with phosphor voices helps get me from one end of the day to the other.

I am enjoying the new Rasputina album, Oh Perilous World. I think this might possibly be the best yet, overall. And here I think I've run out of blog entry for now. The platypus says that's just as well.
greygirlbeast: (Mars from Earth)
This thing called story, squirming in my head like an eel. Ever as slippery as an eel. An eel with nipping teeth. And the more I clutch at it, the more easily it slides from my fingers. Or, put another way, no word count for yesterday. Despite a multitude of distractions, I did read through "Bradbury Weather," seeking an entirely new direction for The Dinosaurs of Mars, which I hope I've found. The day will tell.

Vince has finished his illustration for "The Steam Dancer," so today and tomorrow we'll be getting Sirenia Digest #19 ready to go out to subscribers. I think the "Steam Dancer" illustration easily falls into a list of my ten favourite illustrations Vince has done for the digest. So, anyway, expect #19 sometime tomorrow, most likely.

My thanks to Bob Strootman of The Dunwich Whores and Jonathon TeBeest of Rasputina for getting me and Spooky on the guest list for the August 1st Atlanta Rasputina recital. I think the last time we saw Rasputina was November 1st, 2003, at the now sadly defunct Echo Lounge in East Atlanta, so we are looking forward to it. Howard Hughes shall risk the company of other persons and sally forth.

Spooky is looking for her shoes, because she has to go to the post office.

Last night, a good and unremarkable walk about Freedom Park. If anyone should doubt the need for green spaces in cities, hesheit need only stroll past Freedom Park just after sunset on a hot June night. There is always cool, fresh air flowing down towards the surrounding concrete and asphalt, air that must be at least 15F cooler. We did spot one bat, and pondered the near total absence of fireflies in recent years, compared to how extremely common they were back in the '70s when we were kids. Later, we did some Second Life, and by the way — Second Life turns four-years-old today. And I have been a part of it for a mere twenty-four days. Anyway, last night was actually quite exciting. After bumping into [livejournal.com profile] sleepycyan (thank you for the marvelous gramophone!) in New Babbage, I was walking in Caledon, Victoria City, enjoying the night air and considering a bit of shopping, when the sudden arrival of an armed Colonel and Lieutenant heralded the coming of that dread black beast that has so terrified the Caledonian countryside of late. The brute charged our group twice, and it's a wonder we escaped with our second lives. I have photos from the encounter, which will be posted at some point. Later still, Spooky and I watched an episode of (speaking of) Firefly ("Out of Gas"), then went to bed about 2 a.m.

And now it's time to make the doughnuts.
greygirlbeast: (tentacles)
I have to admit that I'm kind of excited about a number of upcoming "big budget" sf films, including:

The new version of Richard Matheson's I Am Legend...

...and The Invasion...

...but mostly, I'm thrilled at what I've seen of Danny Boyle's Sunshine.

Meanwhile, before I seek that which is bed, here's a pretty little something:



Tomorrow, kiddos.

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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