The snowman my kids built with the neighbors is a congealed lump this morning, since the rain is coming down in sheets. Rain, thank goodness, not snow or freezing stuff. I like snow, don’t get me wrong. But the people around here go mad the instant there’s a flake or two on the road, not to mention the fact that I get freaking cold when the mercury drops below zero. Plus I was cranky, cold, and nauseous yesterday. It was only a mild stomach bug, but still. Dry heaving takes an enormous amount of energy out of one.

My semi-hiatus from blogging did me a lot of good. I got a lot of work done and was able to breathe a bit. Now I’m back in the fight, and it’s a good thing too. Under revision for two books, another book boiling in my brain–the creative muscles are totally different than the revision muscles, thank heavens–a Sekrit Project shaping up, review books coming in the mail, all sorts of Neat Stuff is about to happen. Now that I’ve rested a bit, I’m excited instead of terrified.

Well, maybe excited and terrified is a better way to put it.

The current thing taking most of my brain capacity is a read-through on a series to make sure I’ve tied up the loose ends I want to tie up, and left the ends I want dangling, dangling. Whenever I do this, I am amazed at some details. I remember writing certain passages, and others seem like they just fell out of my head. It’s a weird double-or-triple-or-more-vision to see the final form of something I spent so long soaking in and tweaking. Sometimes my notes (because I do take notes every time I’m forced to do a read-through) hold a smiley face, or a “That day was horrid, but I got some good writing in”, or “I REMEMBER THAT, IT HURT”. (That last one happens more often than you’d think.)

So today while the world drowns itself outside, I’ll be making notes on a legal pad and wincing in sympathy with one of my heroines. This will in all likelihood involve gallons of hot tea and several small snacks, some of which will be left uneaten as I wander away from them because I Have An Idea. I suspect watching me work on these sorts of days would provide a lot of amusement. You’ll have to just imagine it, though, since I refuse to install a webcam.

Over and out.

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lilithsaintcrow: (Default)
( Dec. 15th, 2009 12:49 pm)

Today is a day for clothes shopping. No, not for me. I’d rather have my skin peeled off in strips than go clothes shopping for me. But I do like going shopping for the kids. We’re doing the midyear school clothes basics tour today–jeans, T-shirts and solid sweaters, because they keep growing and this will provide a base for them when they Go To School. It’s going to be fun.

Sadly, it must be a banzai run rather than an all-day safari, because I’ve line edits to keep whaling at. Editing makes me cranky. I’m glad someone else has done most of the markup for me and I can just approve it or insert my own changes. This is the last big push before copyedits, so it will set me up for writing Dru 4–which is taking shape quite nicely, to the tune of 2K a day or thereabouts.

So, don’t expect to hear from me a lot for the rest of the week. Unless it’s a moderate amount of bitching on Twitter. That’s about all I have energy for.

Cover me. I’m going in…

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The Authorfest last night was a ton of fun. Thanks to everyone who came out–new faces and old! I got to see Aimee A., Marne O., Jay S. and his lovely wife, and Kristin B. (otherwise known as the Bravest Woman In The World) as well as lots of new fans. I got to sit next to the amazing Nina Kiriki Hofman, who was very very kind to the Little Prince. (She also had her Nebula with her, which was awesome to see.) Big thanks to Powell’s for hosting us, to Saint Peter Honigstock for putting the whole thing together, and to Lea D. for helping.

Plus, a special shout out to the 501st–you guys are rad. Especially the nice young man who let the Little Prince put his stormtrooper helmet on. He’s still talking about that, with a dreamy glint in his big eyes.

I was so busy from the moment I got there I was barely able to say hello to my tablemates and grab a quick hug from the Hendees. Fellow Dame Devon Monk was there signing up a storm, as well as the charming Alma Alexander, who I almost accidentally hip-checked. I am clumsy.

I know I’ve missed a bunch of people that were there. I literally didn’t have a free moment the entire event. I was exhausted by the end of it, and had to get home, though I would have loved to go to at least two of the dinners I got invitations for, but I just couldn’t. I got home, made pizza for the kids, and promptly finished a short story, then crawled to bed.

Today is for sliding the revisions on Heaven’s Spite to the front of the queue, so I can have a workable first draft by deadline. No rest for the wicked, right? But I wouldn’t trade this job for the world. At least every time I revise a story I have a chance at getting it closer to what it was in my head. I may not ever get there, mind, but at least I can get closer.

Over and out.

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When I am so discombobulated I can’t even remember how to run my coffeemaker…

…you know it’s time for Revisions Deathmarch. The blessed caffeine is going to be hitting my bloodstream during the typing of this short post, so forgive me any irregularities. Oh, and check out Marjorie Liu’s post on the five stages of decline in a writer’s career. It’s well worth reading.

Want to win a signed copy of Betrayals? LiyanaLand has her contest up for one signed copy. She’ll also have interviews with Christophe and Graves later this week. Also, tomorrow is the launch date, so I’ll be running another giveaway. And the newsletter giveaway is still upcoming too.

Right now I’ve got revisions for the third Strange Angels book, Jealousy, on my docket. After that it’s revising Heaven’s Spite into a reasonable first draft. Then I get to dive into writing again, all while keeping my NaNo wordcount up.

Dear God. Eating and washing myself may become of secondary importance if this keeps up. One good thing about it: other stuff has kept me from having the usual pre-release jitters. Still, I’ll take the jitters over personal crisis any day.

Okay. I’ve got to get this opened up and start surgery. This revision looks like it’s going to be blood and guts all over. *rubs hands together with an evil smile*

Wish me luck.

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G’morning. The cold has finally retreated under an onslaught of vitamin C, fluids, an air purifier (since we’re cleaning rather extensively here at Casa Saintcrow, the dust is puffing up–what? Look, I have books. LOTS of books. Books get dusty.) and a decent amount of sleep three out of four nights. It’s amazing to be able to smell again. I always feel half-blind when I can’t smell. One realizes how basic that sense is when one loses it. It almost makes me want to read Perfume again, but that book would demand too much of me.

Instead, I’m on a huge Georgette Heyer kick right now. Finished Devil’s Cub two nights ago and am now working on The Quiet Gentleman. I love Heyer’s sly use of dialogue; I just eat it up.

I am also having some website problems. Apparently the server I’m on is buggy and has been buggy for months, and i finally drew the line and insisted on being moved to a new, more reliable server or I would take my hosting dollars elsewhere. Let’s hope the problem gets fixed–this is the first time I’ve been able to post to my blog for a couple days. Grrr. Web stuff always makes me feel like I need to SHE HULK SMASH. Especially when it’s web stuff I cannot fix under my own power.

Add this to the fact that I went grocery shopping yesterday and discovered several people who were the Center of the Universe, and no wonder I am crankily remaining home today. I seriously did loudly say at one point, “STAND RIGHT THERE AND CONTINUE TALKING, MA’AM. I’M FASCINATED TO HEAR WHAT HAPPENS NEXT. I WILL WAIT TO GO PAST YOU IN THIS PASTA AISLE. NO, REALLY, KEEP GOING. WHAT DID HE SAY NEXT?”

If you would have been there, dear Reader, you would have done the same.

It will take an emergency to airlift me out of the house, dammit. I’m just done with the outside world for a bit. (Except for sweet sweet electronic communication, I guess.)

Anyway. I’m hip-deep in copyedits for Betrayals, so this is short today. I just wanted to thank everyone who has been so supportive during the Recent Troubles. You know who you are. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I don’t know what I’d do without you guys.

Off I go to dig through Track Changes. I really thought I’d get some creating-time in this week. The gods may yet be kind. I remain hopeful.

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Tragedy. The ball to my Marilyn piercing fell off somewhere during the night and I can’t find it. Despite tightening it every day I’ve lost it, and I had to take the post out. *sigh* Which means it will close up, since I can’t get down to pick up another ball until, jeez, sometime this weekend? If I’m lucky?

It’s awful; I no longer feel like a pretty pretty princess. Still, a piece of metal on my face isn’t THAT important. Mostly I just loved how it looked and how it made me feel.

I still have my nose ring, though. World without end, amen. It’ll take more than rough sleeping to dislodge that. And to tell the truth, it’ll be nice not working around the Marilyn for things like moisturizer etc. I just loved it, though. I’m sad.

But not TOO sad. Today is for fifty more pages of revision, and if I get that done and get all other obligations (hoovering and the dinner party) out of the way, I will reward myself with some of the shiny pretty new project. It’s not something I’m getting paid for, which means I have to get it done in the cracks and gullies, but it’s awesome and has a great first line. Maybe it will turn out to be something, maybe not. Either way I’m having fun.

And I can always get my Marilyn repierced if I feel like it. It’s not forever. I’ll just have to be a pretty pretty princess only on the inside for a while.

There are worse things.

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Welcome to my random:

* It is very, very hard to sit still when one hears, “Oh, no…Get a towel!” It is even harder to sit still and listen to the kids cleaning up a mess they’ve made and hoping I haven’t heard. So much of parenting is keeping a straight face. I am fairly sure it’s just spilled lemonade on a pair of pants. Nothing that requires my immediate attention.

* I love Cleolinda’s Secret Life Of Dolls posts, and today’s SLOD just about made me crack a rib laughing. I needed that.

* Ah, yes. The lemonade has been mopped up. They managed to clean it up themselves and change into clean clothes. Then they came and informed me proudly that I hadn’t been necessary. Ah, the little darlings.

* It’s sunny again. What’s with the sunny days creeping me out? I get a little uneasy when I wake up to sunshine and birdsong. It’s like a Disney movie…but then I start looking for the zombies.

* I’m glad today was a light workout day–just a 20 minute run and some shovelgloving. That and some Midol have evened out my mood a bit. I don’t feel like running through the house with my hair on fire. This is good.

* I am considering canceling my subscription to W magazine. They used to have some really avant-garde advertising in there, stuff I could cut up and use for collages. But alas, no more. And I’m getting really, really tired of looking at everyone in there either needing a ham sandwich or preparing to shed their human form and bite their mate’s head off at climax. I’d rather read Cooks Illustrated and Scientific American, frankly. I suspect it’s because I’ve gotten old…

* After I finish reading the current crop of Tantra books, I think I’m going to go back and take another whack at Meditation Secrets for Women. I get so tired of male-centred philosophical systems; and Western writers writing about Tantra (because I can’t read the original texts) have a male bias all its own–the female is still treated as the exception to the male norm. As per usual. I need a palate cleanser.

* Next up on my personal reading quest: poetry! Anna Akhmatova, Sylvia Plath, and ee cummings. If the Plath and Akhmatova end up depressing me, I have a stock of Neruda and St. Vincent Millay on hand too. (Hey. Shush. I like Millay.) I have to finish Young Stalin first, though. No more Stalin bios, dammit. They give me weird dreams.

* Shiva the corn snake was fed yesterday. We defrosted a pinkie and got Shiva in a separate feeding container, then dangled the defrosted mousicle in front of him with tongs. (”You’ve thought of everything, Mummy!” Astronomy Girl said.) Everyone watched as Shiva struck, then everyone watched as he dislocated his jaw and the mouse went down in a matter of minutes. We waited until the mouse lump was somewhere in the middle of his body, then set the food container in his enclosure so he could slither out on his own–better than handling him right after he’s eaten, since he’s such a little guy. I thought the kids would be a little squicked, but they were just fascinated and watched the whole process with something resembling awe.

I, of course, was very happy with this because he was eating a rodent. Things that eat rodents are Good. We all know how I feel about rats. Things with naked tails and beady little eyes freak me out. I know rats are smart and make good pets, but the atavistic shudder I feel when I see one…no. Just no. I’m happier with the snake.

And that, my dears, is all. Revisions for Flesh Circus are in my future. I like being busy, and I’m in a revisions sort of mood. Kismet books are hard on me emotionally, and I think I’m ready to get this one revised and out the door…and make some headway on something else. I’m itching to write something new instead of endless revising.

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So Shiva the corn snake is burrowing and hiding, probably to cope with all the unexpectedness of yesterday. The UnSullen freaked out last night because he couldn’t find the snake, but I put my foo down and told him to go to bed and leave the damn thing alone. This morning he changed the water in the vivarium (daily water changes are necessary) and lo and behold, there was Shiva. Right where I said he’d be. I suspect once we get a climbing branch for him, he’ll hang out on that and stop burrowing. Right now, though, he’s just taking a moment. I don’t blame him. Must be awful frightening for a little guy.

For those of you who asked, right now he eats pre-killed mice. Frozen pinks, to be specific, that should be defrosted in a plastic bag under warm running water. Live prey is not a good idea for him, since he’s so ickle. And frankly, I don’t mind snakes but I think I’ve mentioned how I feel about rodents. I have no qualms about feeding Shiva little rodents. This is part of why I don’t mind snakes–I look at them and see efficient rodent control.

I was feeling pretty down this morning, hopped on the treadmill and that’s helped. I should take exercise equipment as a tax deduction. If I could just find the way to make it fly…but I suspect the guvmint would not appreciate that. I am not rich enough for the IRS to ignore me and I suspect I never will be.

ANYWAY. Today there is shopping for a certain little boy’s birthday presents, since his party is soon. I even got him a pinata. Awesome fun–I never got a pinata when I was little. I suppose I could take a halfhearted whack at one now if the kids insist.

And that’s all the news that’s fit for printing in my neck of the woods. The revision, she is not going so well–I am beating my head against a brick wall, the way I usually do at this part of the process. I’ve got a week, plenty of time. Plenty of time.

I’ll just keep repeating that until hard work fixes the story. Argh.

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lilithsaintcrow: (Default)
( Mar. 11th, 2009 10:05 am)

No, it’s not so fine sometimes. But when it’s good…well, then it’s the best.

Back soon.

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lilithsaintcrow: (Default)
( Mar. 10th, 2009 11:57 am)

I’ve finished the first pass of revisions for SA 2, and now I’m embarking on the second, more fine-tooth-comb pass. So, erm, I’ll be back in a bit.

Last night I took the Princess (who wishes to be referred to as Astronomy Girl from here on out) to see Coraline. She absolutely loved it, and if she is Good (and when is she not? Both my kids are very, very Good) I will buy her the book and maybe introduce her to some other Gaiman. (Suggestions welcome. My favorite is American Gods, but I’m told I’m in a minority.) I was pleasantly surprised to find that the movie didn’t ask adults to check their brains at the door, and of course it’s almost impossible to mess up such wonderful work as Gaiman does.

Okay. I’m outie. Hacking at the jungle of prose…

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lilithsaintcrow: (Default)
( Mar. 2nd, 2009 11:52 am)

I’m currently in the wilds of revision. Can I make a book better in 18 days? Or will my head ’splode? We’re going to find out.

I’m also reading Outliers in between gulps of manuscript, and washing it all down with Foreign Affairs. Is it just me, or has the tone of articles in FA substantially changed with a new administration in Washington? (Bloodcult, I should email one of the articles to you; it links to what you were talking about the other day with the credit crisis. Or do you get FA? Oh, hell, I’ll just link it. Enjoy.)

So, blogging might be spotty for a few days while I tear the innards of the book out and tell the future I mean, ah, rearrange them. No divination by revision here.

See ya around…

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lilithsaintcrow: (Default)


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