Small world.

I ran across an interview of Silvia Moreno-Garcia yesterday (publisher of Innsmouth Free Press, which I love), and was mildly amused to find that the blog running the interview belongs to one of the people that I ran into at a convention last year. I’d lost his card, so it’s nice to find it again.[1]

(Also, if I trip over Ian Rogers’ name one more time in the next week I am going to need to get Every House is Haunted next, just because the frequency illusion[2] effects are getting a bit surreal. (It’s on the list to get anyway, but I would ideally like to finish a couple more books first.))

Also, I finished a short story draft last night. It’s a horribly clunky draft-zero draft, but it’s a draft. I’m thinking I should set it aside for a week or so and then try to make it a little less horrible–I know usually people advise longer, but I think that perhaps the time gap from draft-zero to first-draft can be a little shorter. In a lot of ways it feels more like shovelling than chiselling detail.

[1] This was a theme for said convention. Annoyingly. I must organize better in future.
[2] Also called the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon, a term it took me a ridiculously long time to find, because for some reason I was stuck on “cognitive bias”.

Like pulling teeth. With marshmallow pliers.

I have been picking away at a story. It is currently at four thousand words and change.

I would guess about thirty-eight hundred of them need to be rewritten, and of those, right now, I feel like it would be optimistic to say that only two thousand need to be burnt outright. Burnt. And there’s a subplot or merging course of events or what-have-you that I know how I want to involve but haven’t actually done anything with, and a creeping embarrassment at the prose and the setup, and…

I am torn right now between calling it off, hammering out a final scene so that there’s something to tear apart later, or sketching out a point form list of what I need to have happen next. (I am bravely putting off sinking into a funk of “oh my god I can’t do this”, since it always knocks my schedule for a loop, really.)

Have you been here? What do you do?


Since we’ve finished watching Leverage, I’m looking for a new TV show.  A friend recommended Alphas, which I’d heard nothing about.  Looked up a very quick summary–it appears to be people with low-level superpowers who are working to stop other people with low-level superpowers from being bad guys.

Having seen the first episode, I have to say I like it.  Five of the six Alphas are very well-drawn; a little simple so far (which is fine for the first episode), but distinctive. The sixth is a deliberate cipher, so that’s fine.  The moral ambiguity with Red Flag and Rosen’s superiors is the kind of thing I’d expect to come up with this setup, and I’m glad it’s being established so early.

Small spoiler and additional note after the cut:

Continue reading “Alphas.”

A bit of a dull day.

It feels a little like I’ve been wading through molasses. There are things I would like to have done that I am not ready to do, and other ones that I got distracted from and did not get done.

On the other hand, I did get the screens for the living room windows washed. And sorted out the natural gas leak from the meter without freaking out. And I updated someone’s website for them. Finished Black Wings, although I didn’t write a review for it yet. Got up at a reasonable hour. Dressed and left the house. Took out the garbage.

(It’s an “accentuate the positive” kind of day; or at least I am making it be one because I am trying to avoid the doldrums.)

(In relation to this: I will note that a Google image search on kittens noses flowers is occasionally a helpful stopgap. Some of them are so cute.)

Also wrote 500+ words, even if they are in serious need of revision. And I think I just got a twist in a short story, and I don’t know if it’s a good one or a bad one to use.

First book finished of 2013

Johnny Halloween: Tales of the Dark SeasonJohnny Halloween: Tales of the Dark Season by Norman Partridge

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Perhaps oddly, I liked the one of the two straight-up non-supernatural stories in this collection the best. The titular “Johnny Halloween” is something I’d expect to run across in a decent noir anthology.

“The Man Who Killed Halloween” was well-done; it didn’t fit with what I was expecting from the book (non-fiction!), but it’s a decent and evocative piece. Together with Partridge’s introduction, it provides a thoughtful basis for the contrast between Ricks and the October Boy.

Actually, now that I’m thinking about it, this may be why “Three Doors” and “Treats” (which I’ve read before, along with “Black Leather Kites”) didn’t stand out for me quite as much, although they’re both good stories and would normally be the kind of thing I’d expect to be my favourites. The trio of Hallowe’en/Jack o’Lantern-titled pieces echo each other on the question of masks, and real monsters, and the deceit that lets the latter go unpunished, and their supporting each other makes them stand out above the rest.

(Please pardon the fact that this is both terse and a bit shaky; I’m trying to practice writing reviews, and I clearly need to practice writing reviews.)