greygirlbeast: (Heavy Horses)
I better number this one. Well, after I mention an extraordinarily weird dream I had last night involving a secret society of women who were capable of accomplishing mind transference, and so, once a year, traded bodies. And I was being asked to join. But it wasn't this me, it was some other version of me. The the whole affair was far more sinister than it sounds.

1. On this day in 2001 I began keeping a "blog." I'd long kept a private, handwritten journal, and I found the whole idea of a public journal oxymoronic. You know, "public privacy." America had not yet completely decided that "transparency" in all things was such a hot idea. Well, I still haven't (in fact, I know just the opposite), but I digress. It's been ten years since Neil persuaded me to give this blogging thing a try. And...ten years later, here I am. Offhand, I can think of no other author besides Neil whose blogged longer, and he's been nowhere near as fanatical about it as I've been. I started at Blogger, then at LJ beginning in April 2004, then stopped updating to Blogger in 2006. I suspect I've made an entry for 90% of all the days since that first entry. So, wow. Sure, blogging isn't cool anymore, but who gives a shit about what the interwebs deem cool?

2. [Interlude] Jethro Tull season has begun!

3. Here I will slightly amend a bit from the entry I made on the 24th of November 2009: On this day in 1859, 152 years ago, Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life was first published (by British publishing house, John Murray). If any single book charted the course of my life, this is likely it. So, 152 years ago Darwin proposed a theory of evolution to explain the fact of evolution, and, of course, the theory is still evolving, which is the nature of science. And the creationists still don't get it. Maybe in another 152 years...well...let's not go there. My inner pessimist always wins. It's enough to marvel that so many years have passed, and we've made countless discoveries that would have dazzled, delighted, and humbled Mr. Darwin.

4. I just looked at my friends list (where fewer and fewer entries appear), and Elizabeth Bear ([livejournal.com profile] matociquala) has written (regarding the subjectivity of time in a narrative):

And thus, maybe a kiss deserves an entire paragraph in one circumstance... and in another, a battle no more than a sentence. It all depends on the subjective way that time dilates and contracts around your viewpoint characters.

And this is well said, but it set me to thinking – as these things always do – that subjectivity renders these sorts of observations all but useless. On the surface, I agree with the sentiment expressed here. Things get messy, though, when the author pauses to realize exactly how incredibly subjective readers' reactions are to...well...everything. What is too little detail for Reader A is too much for Reader B is just right for Reader C, or almost just right for Reader D, or...almost too much for Reader E. And so forth. There really are no happy mediums here. We can only write our voices, and what seems to suit us, and see how it all falls out in the end. That is, in my case, how many readers will feel as I do regarding detail and how long I've lingered on any given subject or event in any given scene. And, then, of course, I ignore the consensus and continue on my way.

5. Oh! Good news re: Rift. Trion appears to have responded to the outrage of many of its players as concerns the "Fae Yule" foolishness. An enormous amount of the Xmas trees, wrapped presents, and crap vanished yesterday with the latest hotfix to patch 1.6. Now, I can mostly avoid it by simply avoiding low-level areas and Meridian (the Defiant capital city) in Freemarch. Trion, it appears you done at least half good, after all. Oh, and gods, I got a glimpse (I quickly averted my eyes) of one of the Xmas themed rifts, complete with fucking snowman. To quote [livejournal.com profile] kylecassidy, "Sweet barking cheese." Pure cocksucking kitsch.

So, this evening, as the day winds down, this day on which we celebrate obesity and colonialism and the genocide of Native Americans, at the end of this day I can play Rift and pretty much be not be reminded of that which I wish to forget, namely the world's Xtian minority. By the way, last night Spooky and I played Indus (my Eth warrior) and Emris (her Kelari cleric) out in Stonefield. Emris is the only male character either of us plays (though, my main, Selwynn, a Kelari mage, is a strange sort of hermaphrodite). [livejournal.com profile] opalblack was with us (her Kelari rogue, Harlakai), but then suddenly vanished, and didn't reappear. Ah, but Spooky's talking to her now, so mystery solv'd.

By the way, as I wrote here (as a postscript) in 2008: Postscript: ...just in case anyone has forgotten since the last time i pointed this out, "Endeavor to be inoffensive to all who might have their feelings hurt at the drop of a hat" is not in my job description. In fact, I think it says something rather to the contrary.

6. Yesterday, I rehydrated, took it slow and steady, avoided caffeine, fought back the exhaustion, and wrote the first three pages of script for Alabaster #3. It's a good beginning. And Steve Lieber is hard at work on making my words into pictures. Cool stuff.

7. Back to the shuggoths! And later, William S. Burroughs.

Rolling along,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Default)
So, no Great Trailer & Photo Shoot for The Drowning Girl this weekend. Thank you, Hurricane Irene. Early last night, watching the grave weather forecasts, Kyle and I made the decision to postpone the whole affair. Which means postponing it until early October. Even if we could have reached Moonstone Beach (the area will likely be evacuated), I'd have never asked Sarah (who plays our Eva) to walk towards that surf, much less into it. So, there you go. But I do not argue with forces of Nature. They were here first, and will be here long afterwards. Forces of Nature have seniority.

But yeah, it's looking pretty bad here in Providence, and we'll spend part of the day laying in supplies for the impact. Fortunately, we have storm windows, and the walls of this old house were built with a crisscrossed lattice of steel to protect against this very thing (though it makes hanging pictures a bitch).

I got virtually nothing written yesterday. There was far too much commotion. Confusion. Calamity. All those good "c" words. Mostly, having to figure out, at the last fucking minute, what to do about the Great Trailer & Photo Shoot. Thus, I only managed to write a paltry 698 words on Chapter 8 of Blood Oranges. Nonetheless, I intend to have the book (plus epilogue) finished by the end of the day Tuesday (August 30).

I now have both of Vince Locke's illustrations for The Drowning Girl, and they're marvelous. Sirenia Digest subscribers have seen the first of the two, but no one (outside my publisher's offices) gets to see the second until the book is released next year.

Yesterday, my contributor's copy of The Book of Cthulhu arrived. As did the very beautiful edition of Shirley Jackson's The Sundial I'd ordered. Also, a care package from Madison Colvin in Savannah, Georgia, which included, among many other things, a copy of Angela Carter's Love (one of the few books by her I didn't own). So, thank you, Madison. Very, very sweet of you.

Last night, once the dust of difficult decisions had settled, there was some not exactly very good RP in Insilico, but it had a Season Five Dexter chaser, so everything worked out well. And I think the problem that caused the not exactly very good RP has been identified, so that it won't happen again. Then Spooky read The Stand, and I listened. We reached Chapter 38. And, for fuck's sake, I hate Harold Lauder. Sociopathic, maladjusted, plain ol' disgusting behavior aside, he makes me want to bathe. Oh, back to Dexter, Peter Weller is becoming William Burroughs. Has anyone else noticed that? Meanwhile, Deb Morgan is my latest profanity crush (I know most people don't get those, but I definitely have a profanity fetish; my last profanity crush was Al Swearengen). To wit:



And that was yesterday.

Battening Down the Hatches,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Default)
Okay. I admit it. It feels like summer here in Providence. Which is weird, because it's currently only 77˚ Fahrenheit.

I've been free of Second Life for almost three months. And what always happens when I finally pull myself free of that quagmire is happening again. Someone I know from Second Life starts talking about Second Life. When this happens, he or she does not have to say, "Oh, please come back." Not at all. He or she need merely make me think about SL, and the addiction starts sparking. My brain cells begin to crave, and I have to start fighting back or else succumb. I'm usually assured that it's better now. Better than this most recent time I quit "for good." Which is like saying, hey, leprosy's better now. You should try it again!

Spooky says if we had a front porch we could lounge around on it like a couple of hobos. Spooky has an obsession with hobos.

Yesterday...um. Still waiting to hear from my agent on Blood Oranges. But I did print out all there currently is of Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart, which is, incidentally, 318 pages, or 97,365 words, or 438,668 characters (no spaces), or 536,036 characters (with spaces), or 1,451 paragraphs, or 7,069 lines of text. My drooling idiot of an HP printer required a cartridge and a half of black ink to do the job. So, yes. I did that. And I proofed the first story, "The Wolf Who Cried Girl." I also looked at a few marvelous photographs [livejournal.com profile] kylecassidy took on Sunday (in the cold of June) of Sara Murphy, Our Eva Canning. Mostly underwater. But that's all a secret, and I can't show you. You'll thank me, later. They always do. I sweated some. I fantasized about places I wasn't.

Last night, we finished reading William Burroughs' Junky, including the "lost" 28th chapter of the manuscript. Yeah, well. It happens. Junkies lose stuff. Which is different than hobos, who can't even be bothered to remember they have stuff.

I should go. Please pre-order Two Worlds and In Between, if you've not already. And leave some stale bread out for the hobos. And, it just occurred to me how much time some writers spend trying to convince themselves The World Really Loves Them Always And Forever (And Is Their BFF And Will Never Forget Them), when in fact, mostly, the world couldn't give a horse's fanny about any of us.

Ta,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (stab)
Spooky just read me a review of Ellen Datlow's Supernatural Noir, which includes my story, "The Maltese Unicorn." Actually, no. She didn't read me a review, or even a "review." It was just some dipshit's blog entry. He took issue with the fact that Gregory Frost's "The Dingus" and my story both use the word dingus in different ways, and this confused the blogger. Because, you know, he doesn't own a dictionary or know how to use Google (never mind an obvious unfamiliarity with the works of Daishell Hammett). Honestly, how much longer do I have to endure unabashed human stupidity? It's as if people are PROUD to be morons. Anyway, I just timed myself. I needed only five seconds, using Google, to learn that dingus is:

Used to refer to something whose name the speaker cannot remember, is unsure of, or is humorously or euphemistically omitting - here's a doohickey—and there's the dingus. – and – Dingus –noun, plural -us·es. Informal: a gadget, device, or object whose name is unknown or forgotten.

Five measly seconds! The internet! Use it, motherfuckers! Maybe Google has become like libraries; cool people don't use it.

Meanwhile, in the Great State of Alabama, where so much of my life was squandered, I have the story of Republican state Senator Scott "Top of His Class" Beason, who is unsure why he called blacks "aborigines." Yes, you read that correctly. A brief quote from the article:

In one transcript, Beason and two other Republican legislators were talking about economic development in predominantly black Greene County and the customers at one of the county's largest employers, the Greenetrack casino in Eutaw.

"That's y'all's Indians," one Republican said.

"They're aborigines, but they're not Indians," Beason replied.


As kids these days are wont to say, o.0. Actually, the comment "That's y'all's Indians" might be the worst of it.

---

Kittens, there's no such thing as salvation. But if there were, it would be anger.

---

Anyway, yesterday I wrote something, but I can't yet tell you what I wrote, because it's related directly to that NEWS THAT IS SO GOOD, SO COOL, but that I can't yet announce. I emailed the first half of Blood Oranges to my agent. And then I spent a couple more hours editing the ms. of Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart. And that was work yesterday.

Oh, and, as it happens, my contributor's copies of Ellen Datlow's Supernatural Noir arrived, and this is an awesome book, which you must own. The beady eyes of the platypus, they compel you! Also, all modesty aside, "The Maltese Unicorn" is one of the best short stories I've written in years. Dingus!!!!!

---


Late last night, we watched a movie. Now, here's the problem with Hal Hartley. On the one hand, he can make a brilliant film like No Such Thing (2001), and on the other hand he makes turds like The Girl from Monday (2005) and (the film we saw last night) The Book of Life (1998). Imagine a film devoid of acting, a script, art direction, cinematography, direction, sets, all production values...well, most that stuff you find in movies. Instead, it's just a garbled story about Jesus deciding the end of the world is a really bad idea, and you have The Book of Life. Now, the good news is threefold: 1) Polly Jean Harvey plays Mary Magdalene, and she at last tries to act in one scene, and is cool to look at the rest of the time; 2) William S. Burroughs adds a voice-over as a hellfire-and-brimstone radio preacher; and 3) the film is, mercifully, only 63 minutes long. Honestly, kittens. Not worth your time or the cost of a rental. Watch Henry Fool or No Such Thing again if you need a Hartley fix.

Fuck. I have to work today. Throw comments at me. Maybe something will stick.

Angrified,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Narcissa)
Today, Ferris Bueller's Day Off is twenty-five years old. That is, today is the 25th anniversary of its theatrical release. Fuck, I'm old. I told Spooky we should play hooky today, do nutty shit like lip syncing on parade floats, and then destroy an expensive car. Sadly, she only laughed.

"Bueller?...Bueller?...Bueller?"

Le sigh.

I hereby open the floor to comments.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,430 words on Chapter Three of Blood Oranges (a chapter which, by the way, is titled "Bobby Ng, Alice Cregan, and the Troll Who Lives Under the Bridge"), and reached page 102. It was pretty much all a conversation with the troll yesterday. Today, I have to find the end of that conversation. I let [livejournal.com profile] readingthedark have a look at the pages last night, and, afterwards, he declared "Holy shitfuck. You've written literary crack." I'm assuming that's a good thing. Anyway, he's driving down tonight for a visit.

Please allow me to remind you of the Big Damn eBay auction. Because, you know, I'm still waiting for Everything on Earth is Free Forever Day, but it's a slow train coming. Also, have a look at Spooky's Dreaming Squid Dollworks and Sundries Etsy shop. All her paintings are on sale (limited time) for 20% off! Coupon code: ART20

It just occurred to me that the loathsome emoticon o.0 is actually a broken infinity symbol, and that's got to be some sort of profound. I blame the Illuminati. For breaking it, not for my revelation.

Gods, it's only noon thirty, and already I've mentioned the Soggy Bottom Boys.

Yesterday, Spooky stopped by Myopic Books and procured for me a belated birthday present – the 50th-anniversary edition of William S. Burroughs' Junky, because a bitch cunt of a snatch, who otherwise shall not be named, absconded with my copy back in 2005 (along with many other favorite books), and because I've been needing to read it again. In part because Siobahn Kerry Quinn, the protagonist of Blood Oranges, was a heroin addict before getting bitten by a werewolf and then vampirized on the same night. Oh, and last night, we watched Trainspotting, which I hadn't seen since the '90s. Obviously, not exactly a coincidence. I can hardly draw off my own experiences as a heroin addict, having only shot up that once and all. It's not that I dislike needles. And smack really is better by a hundred times than the best sex you've ever had. It's just I was meant for greater things, like growing old and bitter and more properly wicked.

Junkies, by and large, aren't wicked people. Sure, they'll rob you blind, but isn't that the American way? Isn't that the cornerstone of Capitalism? I ask you, isn't highway robbery the very platform upon which this great nation was founded? Isn't that why Richard Nixon rode out against Che Guevara at the Battle of Little Bighorn on that venerable Christmas Day in 1932? Isn't that why Mister Fred McFeely Rogers wore cardigan sweaters?

What the hell am I on about? Oh, and now Spooky's singing the theme song to Captain Kangaroo, but making up her own lyrics.

Maybe we'd best pause here, to reflect and twiddle our collective thumbs.

Twiddlin' and Reflectin',
Aunt Beast

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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