greygirlbeast: (Eli2)
I seem to be developing a new loathing for "weekends" (id est, Friday night-Sunday), and I begin to guess why.

Comments would be good today, if anyone still reads LJ on Saturday.

Today, I have to get back to writing "Sexing the Weird," which I truly need to finish by tomorrow evening. Yes, it's about sex, and the weird, and weird sex. But maybe not how you think. Or maybe exactly as you think.

The only work yesterday were a couple of last minute corrections to the galley pages of The Drowning Girl. Then we had to rush out to the UPS place at Wayland Square to be sure the thing would be back in NYC on Monday morning. Forty-two dollars and some number of cents to get it there by then.

Anyway, after that we wondered...er, wandered (though I wonder a lot) about Providence for a little while, as late afternoon faded to twilight, just watching the last remnants of the day and the last remnants of autumn. I'm beginning to realize that autumn will never cease to make me melancholy. Doesn't matter if it's beautiful, but that should be obvious to anyone who stops and thinks about it. Indeed, the beauty of autumn may lie near the heart of why it inspires a sense of melancholy in me.

We drove up to Blackstone Park, but it was too cold to walk through the woods. We'd not dressed for that much cold. We took the road that leads south (well, we were going south; the other lane leads north), between the Seekonk River and York Pond. I glanced over at the shadows darkening the still waters of the pond, and spotted a lump moving across the surface that I first mistook for a large turtle (despite the chill), but soon realized was a beaver. Oh, before Blackstone Park, we stopped in at Myopic Books, which is next door to the UPS Place. My favorite used bookstore in Rhode Island. I was good. All I got was an 1883 book on the sea, Ocean Wonders: Our Summer at the Seashore and Lakes by William E. Damon (D. Appleton & Co.; New York; the book is inscribed in a beautiful, looping hand, "Lotie H. Palmer 1884") and a much less old children's book on horseshoe crabs, The Crab That Crawled Out of the Past by Lorus and Margery Milne (1966, Atheneum; New York). Looking at these books now, I think, gods, remember when there were innumerable publishers in Manhattan. Now there are about six. To the detriment of almost all authors. Anyway, I was good, as I said, and didn't get a couple of pricey books on the evolution of birds that I also wanted.

We got dinner from Mama Kim's Korean food truck. It was parked in the usual spot, near the corner of Thayer and George. It was almost dark. Spooky went to get the food (I had three gochujang sliders), and I sat on a bench, smoking and thinking about the ancient buildings around me. The silhouette of some Brown University tower was visible to the northwest. Spooky's still sad she didn't get the little fish-shaped, sweet-bean pancakes. They seem too peculiarly reminiscent of something Xtian for my comfort.

Later, too much freaking Rift. But we were finally able to "buy" the cool cold-weather outfits at Chancel of Labors.

Later still, we watched an odd film, Daniel Myrick's The Objective (2007). It was almost pretty good. Well, it probably was pretty good. But there was this horrid voice over, which felt tacked on, whether it was added in post production or was part of the original screenplay. It seemed to exist to a) tell us the plainly obvious and b) make the film seem more like Apocalypse Now. Anyway, voice over aside, great idea and some nicely unnerving imagery, especially the final shot. Then I finished reading John Steinbeck's The Log From the Sea of Cortez, because I only had twenty pages to go, and I was determined to finish (even if it did mean staying up until almost five ayem). Wonderful, wonderful book. Then there were the dreams, some oddly, disturbingly sexy, others oddly, pleasantly disturbing, and still others just odd.

Here are a couple of photos, the The Drowning Girl (+ cat hair!) and the 1883 book:

Covers )


Oddly,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Default)
I'm glad Lindsay Lohan's community service gig at the LA County Morgue is working out so well, because it doesn't seem like jail's willing to keep her even five hours. But, really, here's my thing: who gives a shit? Everywhere I go on the goddamn internet this morning, there's Lindsay Lohan skulking about, and it's not like I felt so fucking great when I woke up. I have to get Lindsay "I don't want to classify myself" Lohan, too?

Hell in a handbasket.

Yesterday, I sat here and tried to think of an idea for a 10k-plus word short story/novelette/novella sort of a thing (requests welcome), and....nothing. People think writers are bottomless wells of Ideas. And maybe some writers are. But speaking as an insanely productive author, occasionally you go to the well and there's nothing down there but dust and old spiderwebs. So, I sat and I stared at the screen, and I typed in a title, stolen from Milton, that I almost certainly won't use. It just sounded good. And there is not a single spare day this month (those so-called weekends) included for me to be not writing. Today, though it's in the list of the Last Ten Things I Want To Be Doing, I'll sit here and stare at this fucking screen again. How hard can it be? It's not like real work, right?

Speaking of which, I finally gave up about 5:30 p.m. (CaST) and loaded the van with about a hundred pounds (no, really; I checked) of books, mostly my comp copies of Two Worlds and In Between and carted them away to Pawtucket, to our second, and supposedly temporary, storage unit. The place was like a fucking icebox.

Please, I know it's hard to believe...

And I'm not even going to get started on how I couldn't get my fountain pen to work.

Last night, we read more of House of Leaves, to that wonderful line where Karen Navidson screams. I read more of The Log From the Sea of Cortez. I might have slept, because I might have dreamt. And fuck you, LJ, for not knowing how to spell dreamt.

Also, please, if you pre-ordered your copy of Two Worlds and In Between and you've not yet received your book, understand that telling me won't help. The book will come. I can't speak for Amazon.com, a company that's making a mint ripping people off (authors included), but I can speak for Subterranean Press. You will get your book. Be patient. Pre-ordering doesn't mean you get a book early, or at the same time as everyone (or anyone) else; it means you'll get a book.

Not Daring To Hope For a Better Day,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (sleeps with wolves)
Compared with the day before, yesterday was quiet and uneventful. This is a very good thing.

We completed the edits on Blood Oranges, and I sent the book to my agent. It took me longer to get around to sending her the book after I'd finished it (~65 days) than was needed the write the damned thing (45 days). The manuscript still isn't perfect. Mostly, there are probably a few unresolved continuity errors, but we can catch that in post.

Two more mammoth (no, really; tusks and all) boxes of Two Worlds and In Between arrived yesterday. It's odd to have such a HUGE and, obviously, personally important book out. Finally, after more than a year of very, very hard work beating this volume into shape. The books has received amazing accolades. But, already, it's completely sold out, with no current plans for another edition. This is the beautiful weirdness that is small-press publishing. Meanwhile, my homely books from the titanic NYC publishers just keep chugging along (Silk, for example, has now been in print for thirteen years and five months). Anyway, other than one copy of the limited edition that's been placed on my shelf, the rest of my copies are headed to storage.

Also, the final galleys (page proofs, whatever) for The Drowning Girl arrived yesterday evening, and they have to be back in NYC by November 15th. This is my last chance to make any changes to the text for the trade-paperback edition (due out in March 2012). But I won't even be opening the package until tomorrow.

Last night, I received the final (and delightful) version of Vince Locke's illustration for "Latitude 41°21'45.89"N, Longitude 71°29'0.62"W.", and that means that today will likely be Assembly Day for Sirenia Digest #71. Which means subscribers will have the issue this evening or sometime tomorrow.

Last night, Spooky went out into the cold, bear-haunted Rhode Island night to fetch us some dinner from Mama Kim's Korean BBQ (!!!), a local food truck. If you're in the area, you absolutely have to try Mama Kim's. Follow them on Twitter and/or Facebook to find where the truck's at on any given evening or afternoon. Last night, Spooky had fried beef dumplings and sweet-potato fries, and I had three beef bulgogi wraps. Yum. And THEN, kittens, then we embarked upon a Hank Moody binge of fucking epic proportions...of fucking. Oh, but how I love Hank Moody. I will one day write an appropriately debauched and lovelorn ode to Hank Moody. Both discs of Season Four of Californication arrived on Friday, and we watched the first (eight episodes, 30 minutes each). And then did our dailies in RIFT (mostly Iron Pine Peak). I read a tiny bit of The Log from the Sea of Cortez, and passed out well before three ayem.

Exhaustion has its limits. And, from here on, I mean to be in bed by two-thirty ayem, asleep by three, and awake by eleven ayem (excepting special occasions). No more of this almost killing myself with sleep deprivation. At some point, it ceased to be insomnia and became a simple reluctance to sleep. Blame the dreams, of course, and the clock I hear in my head, counting off the days, hours, minutes of my life. Anyway, yes. More sleep.

Turning Around,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Pagan1)
A blessed Samhain, and a Happy Hallowe'en.

Comments! Please.

This morning, I fully understand what it means to "wake up on the wrong side of the bed." Not my usual state of affairs. In some ways, this is worse than the dreamsickness. I woke about 10:30 ayem, after getting to sleep about 4:30 ayem. My throat was so dry I couldn't swallow and could hardly breathe, so I went to the kitchen to swallow something wet and rehydrate the raisin that slumber had made of my esophagus. And there in the fridge was a baking dish covered in aluminum foil (I always want to type "tin foil"). I stood there, trying to figure out what was hiding under the foil – without actually having to look. And then I realized it was the remaining two turkey drumsticks (id est, tibiotarsi) from the four Spooky baked on Wednesday evening. In the chaos of the weekend and the freak nor'easter, they'd been forgotten. At least one (and maybe two) turkey's had sacrificed their legs, and we couldn't even be bothered to have the decency not to waste them. I stared a moment, went back to bed, laid there a short while, unable to stop thinking about the wasted turkey legs, hungry people, murdered turkeys, and got up again. See, thing is, we don't waste food. Anyway, that seems to have set the tone for the day.

I was thinking a thought, but now I can't recall what it might have been. Thank you, meds. Really, I could stop taking this toxic shit. But then Spooky would murder me. Thank you, dear sweet filthy world.

---

And, I REPEAT: Okay, here's some news, so perk up those ears. I've been sitting on a secret for many, many months, and many of you know this. On November 2nd, there will be some manner of revelation, and on November 9th, all will be revealed. That's Wednesday, and then the next Wednesday. The NSA has agreed to declassify the files, and the MiBs will go public. The gag order will be rescinded. Some of you will not hear the news here first. Machineries are in motion that are far greater than am I. But...I believe there will be a lot of happy campers among you, and I think the wait will have been worth it. It's worn me ragged, keeping this secret. Feel free, today, to speculate!

---

Yesterday, I wrote 1,288 words on "Latitude 41°21'45.89"N, Longitude 71°29'0.62"W." I thought I'd finish it yesterday, but there's more to come. Also, sadly, I'm no nearer to a seeing a human body with lines of latitude and longitude. But...there went my train of thought again. Choo choo. Um. Oh, yeah. Sirenia Digest subscribers will be getting something very strange and special this month. Well, unless you hated Silk, in which case you'll just be getting something...very strange.

By the way, I would so totally fuck Tom Waits. True fact.

Meanwhile, it's not too early to preorder The Drowning Girl: A Memoir. On the other hand, it might very soon be too late order a copy of Two Worlds and In Between. Snoozers are frequently losers. Or they pay too much on eBay. Or settle for crappy Kindle editions.

A great line from The Log of the Sea of Cortez: "An ocean without its unnamed monsters would be like a completely dreamless sleep." Oh, to ever write a single sentence that sublime.

Also, if you cross the path of Rose Tyler today, do not fucking mistake her for Britney Spears or Christine Aguilera, or lasers will shoot forth from my bloodshot eyes, and those lasers will find you, no matter where you might be hiding. Respect the Companions, or die.

And Heineken? Fuck that shit! Pabst Blue Ribbon!

Oh, and here are photos from early, early, early on Sunday, as the nor'easter struck our street (struck, street – cute), and one from the next day (for some reason):

30 October 2011 )


Irascible,
Aunt fucking Beast
greygirlbeast: (Bjorkdroid)
Yes, weird, wet weather. And here we all are, in the aftermath of this somewhat unusual nor'easter. We're lucky; we didn't lose power, though a lot of Rhode Island did (~20,000 as of 7 ayem this morning; power is being restored). Though, honestly, I don't think I've found it as disturbing as have many who've lived here a long time, who seem to perceive it as a singularly peculiar storm. Maybe, this is simply because I don't know the local weather patterns. It was odd seeing the snow on green leaves, and the wind was very loud, and now the ground is strewn with a carpet of dead green leaves; we got possibly two or three inches of wet snow, almost all of which has now melted. Oh, and the worse thing about this storm? The coining of the obnoxious neologism "snowtober."

And my head is in about seventy-five places at the moment.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,131 words on a new piece, "Latitude 41°21'45.89"N, Longitude 71°29'0.62"W." It's a sort of mad tumble, trip-over-itself style. I'm enjoying it, and trying to resist subjecting the finished story to a "cut up" technique before it appears in the Digest. I'm also fascinated that a piece of erotica can bear a longitude and latitude designation as a title (Harlan did this before me, of course, with "Adrift Just Off the Islets of Langerhans: Latitude 38° 54' N, Longitude 77° 00' 13" W") and now I want to see the human body drawn with lines of both, mathematically precise, that any point on any given body can be pinpointed. All is need is for a model (who will model nude of course), a geographer, and a mathematician to volunteer. Anyway, this is the story Vince will be illustrating this month, by the way. And again, my apologies that this issue, #71, will be so late.

---

Bitter cold is coming tonight. Forecasts of 26˚ Fahrenheit for Providence. I'm thinking a lot about the Occupy Wall Street protesters, and their resolve, and how they have weathered this. How I'm sure various cities hope the cold will end the occupations:

From the ows website:

It's been dumping snow here in NYC all day, high winds and 3 inches of slush on the ground. With the NYPD and FDNY confiscating six generators on Friday and this unprecedented October snow, those occupying Liberty Plaza in downtown NYC are in need of emergency supplies crucial for cold weather survival (and occupation).

Please note the list of winter donation needs provided. I would be there myself if my health allowed. Fuck the career. I would be there if I would be anything more than a burden. So, from a distance, to quote Peter Gabriel, "I will do what I can do." And, of course, we have the horror stories coming out of Oakland and Denver.

---

Heard new Kate Bush last night. The jury is still out. Mother and I are still collating. Also, we watched the first episode of NBC's Grimm, and as I said of Twitter last night, it is almost not awful. Maybe, in time, it will even be...less almost not awful.

I think that's all for now. I almost fell asleep last night reading The Log from the Sea of Cortez (1951). A wonderful book.

Amid Weird Autumn Weather,
Aunt Beast
greygirlbeast: (Barker)
Someone's comment to this morning's entry, and my response to it, made me track down this quote again:

What is the common touch that it is supposed to be so goddamned desirable? The common touch is usually an inept, stupid, clumsy, unintelligent touch. It is only the uncommon touch that amounts to a damn. (John Steinbeck, 1949)
greygirlbeast: (mirror2)
Certain thoughts have been very much on my mind of late, and this evening I came across the following passage, which sums it all up much better than I ever could have done:

To be a writer implies a kind of promise that one will do the best he can without reference to external pressures of any kind. In the beginning this is easier because only the best one can do is acceptable at all. But once a reputation is established a kind of self surgery becomes necessary. And only insofar as I can be a more brutal critic than anyone around me, can I deserve the rather proud status I have set up for myself and have not always maintained.

(John Steinbeck, 1958; from Steinbeck: A Life in Letters, eds. Elaine Steinbeck and Robert Wallsten; New York, Viking, 1975)

I think I will have my bedtime early tonight.
greygirlbeast: (white2)
This quote, of which I was instantly very fond:

I do hate feeling the hot breath down my neck. There are two distinct crafts, writing and writing for someone. The second requires a kind of second sight with which I do not seem to be gifted. In writing you put down an idea or a story and then see whether anyone likes it, but in writing for someone you must first, during and after, keep an invisible editor sitting on the typewriter shaking an admonitory finger in your face.

John Steinbeck (1952; from Steinbeck: A Life in Letters, eds. Elaine Steinbeck and Robert Wallsten; New York, Viking, 1975).

I could not have ever hoped to have said it better myself.
greygirlbeast: (white2)
There's not much good to be said for yesterday, unwriting wise. I did add about 300 words at some point, because three thumbs are apparently better than two. I am fairly certain that the Mordorian Death March at last and finally ends tomorrow. There will be aftershocks, to be sure, and I will deal with them as they arise, but I will be free to get some rest and then move on to the work that has been languishing — The Dinosaurs of Mars, the "Onion" screenplay, Joey Lafaye, etc. So, today as I snip and cut and disfigure I will at least be doing so full in the knowledge that the surgery is almost done.

Though it seems to be taking me forever to read, I'm very much enjoying the Jay Parini Steinbeck biography. I was especially pleased with this bit I read last night — What is the common touch that it is supposed to be so goddamned desirable? The common touch is usually an inept, stupid, clumsy, unintelligent touch. It is only the uncommon touch that amounts to a damn. (John Steinbeck, 1949) Over the years (and sometimes in this journal) I have lamented that I do not have the common touch and never shall; these three sentences make me feel a little better about it. Also, we finished Lemony Snicket's The Austere Academy, which I think is my second favourite of his so far, after The Reptile Room.

I am enormously flattered that [livejournal.com profile] docbrite has seen fit to name her new baby corn snake, in part, after Deacon Silvey. As for her long entry of this morning, I don't think she would want me commenting upon it. I will say only that there's a good reason I've spent many years trying to convince would-be fiction writers that there are hundreds of much easier ways to be miserable, that the life of a writer is neither romantic nor glamorous, and that garbage men and office temps have it better than most professional novelists. The publishing houses of NYC have always been a harsh mistress, but since the 1970s or so, they have become another sort of beast altogether, one that chews first, spits wherever it pleases, and asks questions latter. But this is turning into a commentary, which I already said it wouldn't do.

Oh, and Superior Court Judge Ronnie Batchelor has ruled that the Harry Potter books will remain in Gwinnett County school libraries. Honestly, someone needs to adjust poor Laura Mallory's meds.

---

After taking my rest at the edge of the deep rift or fissure where Suregait forced me to pause in my blind retreat from [livejournal.com profile] setsuled and his orcs, when the sun was rising again, we rode east, hoping to discover the end of this mighty crack in the brittle skin of Gorgoroth or at least an unguarded goblin bridge across. But we searched that way to no avail, and shortly after noon turned and retraced our path westwards. By late afternoon we still had found no crossing, but I did locate a ledge, wide enough for a horse, leading down into the fissure. I thought perhaps we might have no choice but to make our crossing by entering the crack and hoping that a similar ledge could be located on the far side, the route by which we might manage our exit back to the surface. But this seems now to have been only my latest deadly error in judgment, for we are lost, and at least an entire night and day must have come and gone since entering the fissure.

After searching in vain for a corresponding, ascending path, I led Suregait along a narrow side branch or, were this a river and not but a dry crack in the world, I might say tributary, which seemed, for a time, to rise, bearing us up from those black depths. But too soon it proved a dead end, pinching out with at least two hundred feet still remaining before we might have regained the surface. By then the sun was well down, and it seems that neither the light of star nor moon can reach us here. I do not believe I have ever known or imagined such a profound absence of light. I am writing this by the stub of a candle from Suregait's saddle bag, where I also found my flint. When this wick is gone, there shall be no more light until the dawn.

I believe this rift must have been opened during the final eruption of Orodruin, when the One Ring was cast into the Forge of Sauron and unmade. It is a labyrinth, Inwë, and I have passed entrances to what I take to be ancient tunnels, leading yet deeper into the rotten flesh of Mordor. I paused at one and listened, thinking I heard the distant sound of running water. My thirst had grown so great that I almost followed that path wherever it might lead me, but Suregait blocked my way, though her thirst must also be terrible. I hear things in the darkness. I fear I am not alone in this dreadful pit. I was mad to take this road. I was mad to ever have come within twice a hundred leagues of Mordor or to have accepted this impossible quest. And if I was not mad then, I must be mad now. Mad with fear and with thirst. And with guilt and doubt, as well, for I can not conceive why Radagast would not have rejoined me, save his shame at my deserting the imprisoned Easterlings. I will stop writing here, Inwë. I must conserve what little remains of the candle. I may need it farther along. I will try to sleep now and hope to dream of the shining Vales of Anduin, of brave horesmen with green shields emblazoned with golden suns and flying green banners with fine white horses painted upon them.

---
greygirlbeast: (tonks!)
I think this will be a short entry. The Mordorian Death March resumes in earnest today, and I have only ten days remaining to find its conclusion.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,473 words on "Untitled 27" and finished the vignette. If I could pick but a single word to describe the piece, I think that one word word be intense. If nothing else, it is intense. It doesn't woo you, doesn't hold your hand and buy you candy and flowers and take you to a movie. All in all, it's more like the pieces in Frog Toes and Tentacles, I suspect. I would like a different title, and maybe I will find one. This evening, I'll do a little editing on it and send it away to Vince to be illustrated. Sirenia Digest #18 will also include my long "short" story "Houses Under the Sea."

I have zero enthusiasm for this stroll into the grey wastes of Nurn, and I see nothing to be profited by lying about a thing like that. Belatedly, it occurs to me I might have found a boat willing, for a price, to take me across the Sea of Núrnen to Thaurband or Nurngost and I wouldn't be taking the long way around. But I shall not now cry over spilled milk. Just shut up and walk, Kiernan. You have only ten days left, which is both the good and the bad news.

Down the way, the road's divided;
Paint me the places you have seen.
Those who know what I don't know
Refer to the yellow, red and green.


A decent enough walk yesterday. And after dinner, an episode of Nature I'd not seen about an herpetologist's search for very large crocodiles in Asia, Africa, and Australia, specimens over twenty feet, and the question of whether or not the trophy slaughter of crocodiles before hunting bans and restrictions began might have removed the "giant gene" from various populations, since the largest specimens were (artificially) selected against. And then I was up until three thirty reading the Steinbeck biography. If nothing else, Steinbeck's misadventures and general shiftlessness during his twenties and early thirties make me feel a little better about having been such a grand fuck up during that portion of my own life.
greygirlbeast: (imapact1)
"Man has solved his problems," Old Jay went on. "Predators he has removed from the earth; heat and cold he has turned aside; communicable disease he has practically eliminated. The old live on, the young do not die. The best wars can't even balance the birth rate. There was a time when a small army could cut a population in half in a year. Starvation, typhus, plague, tuberculosis, were trusty weapons. A scratch with a spear point meant infection and death. Do you know what the incidence of death from battle wounds is today? One percent. A hundred years ago it was eighty percent. The population grows and the productivity of the earth decreases. In a foreseeable future we shall be smothered by our own numbers. Only birth control could save us, and that is one thing mankind is never going to practice."

"Broth-er!" said the patrón. "What makes you so damned happy about it?"

"It is a cosmic joke. Preoccupation with survival has set the stage for extinction."


Sweet Thursday, John Steinbeck (1954)
greygirlbeast: (Bowie1)
There has been an unexpected change of plans, and it looks as though I won't have to spend the remainder of March proofreading. I will likely get started on Dinosaurs of Mars, instead. Anything at all is better than more proofreading.

Yesterday was quite decent as days off go. My days off usually go sort of askew and frustrating, so yesterday was a nice exception. It was also the sort of day that makes me laugh at things like that LJ "50 movies in a year" challenge. First, we made a 1:40 matinee of The Host. It was awesome. Someone called it Jaws meets Little Miss Sunshine, but I think it's a lot more like Godzilla meets Little Miss Sunshine. Anyway, I was very pleased.

Unfortunately, then we stopped by Videodrome and rented Eragon, because I just had to see for myself. Gods, what a dull, lifeless, unimaginative film. What artless crap. Right off the bat, I could not stomach the flavourless Dawson's Creek stench of Edward Speleers. Could they have ever found a blander countenance to foist upon the world? At least Jeremy Irons was pretty. There was hardly any John Malkovich at all. I think he was ashamed to appear in more than four scenes. This is the worst fantasy film I've watched since I tried to watch the abomination that the SCF made of Ursula K. LeGuin's The Wizard of Earthsea. Oh, sure, Sienna Guillory was hot, but that hardly made up for the overall crap factor (OCF) of Eragon. And then there was that gawdsawful Avril Lavigne song over the closing credits. I suppose I could wonder if the books are any better, but I suspect I'd only be wasting a perfectly good bit of wondering. Seeing Eragon was the sort of disheartening experience that makes me never want to write another word. Especially if the Christopher Paolini books are even half this bad. Maybe that's counter-intuitive. Maybe seeing crap ought to make me want to write something better. It doesn't, though. It leaves me with a nasty "why bother" feeling. After all, I've spent the last fourteen years writing stuff that's better.

But, fortunately, Netiflix had brought us Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny, which, it turns out, is the perfect antidote for Eragon. I made myself ill with the laughter.

At some point, we also finished Cannery Row and began reading Sweet Thursday.

And the digital camera seems to have died. The damned thing's only three goddamn years old. Not even. What good is all this technology if it breaks down so quickly and so quickly becomes obsolete? I bet anything it would be far cheaper for us to buy a much better digital camera — buy a better one for less than we paid for the one that just expired — than it would be to have this one fixed. That's just the sort of unspeakably vile world we live in.

Lately, I find myself in the mood to go Luddite again. No technology post-1945. That sounds about right. No more cellphones or digital cameras or computers of any sort, no more goddamn videogame consoles, no scanners or fax machines or iPods. No CDs or DVDs. And no fucking internet, word wide web, LJ, MySpace, Blogger, Amazon.com hooptedoodle. I'll write on an old Royal typewriter or with pen and paper. There's a lot to be said for pen and paper. I'm at least half serious. I'm sick of all this mindless electronic consumption in the name of Faster and "Better". Fuck faster and "better." Fuck all the plastic, the silicon, the petroleum by-products molded into chic designs. Fuck LCD screens. Fact: I'll never write a book half as good as Ulysses. Fact: James Joyce did it without a goddamn laptop.

It's like all this magical 21st-Century medicine that no one can actually afford.

I suspect this will pass and soon I'll be drooling over MacBook Pros again, which is an awful shame.
greygirlbeast: (Default)
Today we will begin proofreading Silk, and it's going to weird as hell. Like going back to a town where you lived most of your life after being away for ages, only to discover that you're the only thing that's changed. I have said this before, but there was a time when this novel was almost all the world to me. Anyway, I'm going to track our progress through the photostat (which seems, oddly enough, to be taken from the 1998 mmp, not the 2002 tpb) with one of those goofy-ass Zokutou word-meter thingies. Just keep in mind I'm counting off pages, not words. Here is where we begin, grey on grey:

Zokutou word meter
0 / 354
(0.0%)


Ideally, this needs to be done by Friday. We shall see.

Let the tyranny of commas and hyphens begin.

Some preparatory work on The Dinosaurs of Mars yesterday. Reading mostly. I fear I have so much material for this novel, so much background, so much I want to put in, that the "story" will be entirely overwhelmed. This is why, usually, I try never to begin a story with plot, but with simple mental images or with characters. Plot, more often than not, is the enemy. Give it as little "screen time" as you can get away with.

The sun is bright this morning. The trees are going green.

Last night, Spooky and I began reading Steinbeck's Cannery Row (1945). It's one of my very favourite books, and at the moment I am more in need of old comforts than new discoveries. I think we read the first six chapters.

If you've not yet picked up a copy of Daughter of Hounds, today would suit the occasion, says Herr Platypus.

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

February 2012

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