Sep 19

So It Goes

Posted: under Life beyond writing, the writing life.
Tags: ,  September 19th, 2016

Right…I’m back over here briefly.   The new new book is now over 60,000 words, but there’s an interruption right now because page proofs arrived today and need to be worked on promptly.  And I have a Vatta short story to make jell for an anthology with a closer deadline than the book.  As often with short stories, it doesn’t want to jell.  It wants to either grow to a novel or shrink to an anecdote.  Neither is acceptable.

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Aug 25

Home Again

Posted: under Conventions.
Tags:  August 25th, 2016

I survived WorldCon by not doing a lot of things I normally do  (none of the evening/night events or activities), but I made all my panels and managed a couple of dinners with friends.   Aside from that I went horizontal as much as possible.    It may or may not have fended off con crud (certainly people near me were sneezing and coughing, and I sometimes sneezed or coughed without feeling sick–the air was dry, then there were storms, then it was dry and windy.)   Interesting people met on the trains and also at the convention.   I fell madly for the nearest (fantastic!) grocery store, Consentino’s Market and wished for a fridge and a kitchenette.  Wow, the meals I could’ve cooked.  And eaten.   Amazing produce.  Amazing cheese selection.  Amazing bakery.   Amazing meats and seafood.  AND they also had hot food and made custom sandwiches and, and, and…

A good crowd at my signing and at my reading.  Full table at the kaffeeklatsch.   Generally excellent panels.    Generally excellent co-panelists, etc.,  and good folks all around.   Some lovely things in the Dealers’ Room, but I ended up with books, as usual, even though very tempted by hand-painted silk scarves.  They just weren’t the right colors for me.   Larry Smith was in good form in his “book room” and sure enough…that’s where my money went.  The KC convention center is HUGE and there was a lot of walking on hard floors, some of it at speed (some of us gave up on the green room’s allures early on because our panels were so far from it, that it was difficult to get there on time if we got to the green room at the time recommended.  This is NOT a slam at the convention, which had to work with the rooms as they were.   Just a reality we dealt with.)   The one panel I moderated really didn’t need a moderator (thank you, kind panelists.)

I was accosted after one panel by a woman who mistakenly thought I was an M.D., and told me all her reasons for anger with the medical profession in a taut, hostile voice, on and on and on (she did have a very unfortunate set of circumstances) and finally said “So YOU’RE a doctor…!” and when I said I wasn’t, she was sure I was, and I finally convinced her…and that took the wind out of her sails only briefly, because then she went on and on into other miseries of her life until finally I had to go…and seemed disappointed I couldn’t stay and let her vent more.   Sad.   Wish she’d say all that to the specific doctors she’s sure mishandled things.

Feeling tired still, so that’s all the convention report here for now, except that there were Paks fans there, and some good questions about Paksworld stuff.




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Aug 14


Posted: under Life beyond writing.
Tags:  August 14th, 2016

I have only one more day to prep for the two-day trip to KC,  so tomorrow I won’t be logging on.  Then I’ll be gone somewhat over a week (two days on the train coming home, too.)     If any of you are going to WorldCon, I hope to see you there.   Meanwhile, if you’re being drenches in rain, please don’t drown…and if you’re stuck in the horrible heat, please be careful of heat injuries.


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Aug 04

Cold Welcome Cover

Posted: under artwork, Cold Welcome, the writing life.
Tags: , ,  August 4th, 2016

Cold-Welcome-coverComing in March 2017 Read the rest of this entry »

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Jul 26

Who Knew…

Posted: under the writing life.
Tags:  July 26th, 2016

…that visa problems might still exist in the far future worlds science fiction writers write about?  Surely future political entities will have better solutions than we have…won’t they?   (Plot Daemon says “Bwah-ha-hah-hah-hah-haaaaa….”)   And rules about who is really a citizen…and problems with missing paperwork…and what happens if you’re deported from your own planet and you haven’t ever done anything wrong there?

NewBook progresses,  still generating plot and complications in a healthy way.

Addendum July 26 Comment posted by Elizabeth:

Lordy, lordy, this is being fun. No, the characters aren’t having fun. There’s frustration on all sides. Officialdom is annoyed with people who don’t tick all the boxes, fill in all the blanks, sign on dotted lines, get things notarized, and then stand patiently in line for hours… (yes, I was caught in a bureaucratic paper-pushers’ delight a couple of weeks ago, and got to watch other people have a worse time than I did. Then watch a nearby city’s evening news report on the “new mega-center” that the online stuff kept directing me to because it was “faster.” It wasn’t faster; it was jammed and people who weren’t there at 5 am weren’t going to get whatever it was they needed done. Thank you SO much, Texas legislature.) Anyway.

For the writer, the chance to make use of such experiences is one of the things that makes them bearable. The other thing is knitting. Knitting is perfect when you have to wait…and wait…and wait…and wait.

People who say they aren’t patient enough to knit sit or stand in line jittering and fussing, and miserable, while I am adding rows to a sock. It becomes a game. How many stitches or rows can I do before the line moves again? How many while waiting for my number to be called? And it amuses others who are waiting, at least some of them. At least one person in any room is either a knitter, or a relative of someone who knits/knitted or crochets/crocheted. Someone will ask what it is, or if the yarn is wool or cotton, or comment on the colors. And often we can get a lively discussion going that’s not about how slow the line is.

Post & Comment mirrored from Universes blog

31,000 words now

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Jul 17

The Dun Mare’s Grandchild, Episode 4

Posted: under Background, Story.
Tags: ,  July 17th, 2016

When the storm passed, they rode on, over the melting lumps of ice and the wet grass.  Oktar’s sheepskin, sodden with rain, hung over his horse’s rump; he walked, leading his mount, his bare feet so cold from the ice he could not feel the bruises.  His grandfather rode ahead, not speaking to him, but muttering continually to the horses, who bobbed their heads as if they understood.

Home was too far behind to imagine, that cold night.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Jul 12

The Dun Mare’s Grandchild 3

Posted: under snippet, Story.
Tags: ,  July 12th, 2016

When he had the flasks full; Oktar splashed back to hand them up.  His feet were bruised by rocks, aching from cold.  His grandfather looked down at him.  “Drink one swallow.  Then give flask. Catch your horse.”

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Jul 11

Nose to the Grindstone (Mirrored from Universes blog)

Posted: under Craft, the writing life.
Tags: ,  July 11th, 2016

In the “where are we now?” category, the book is, as of today, at 16,000 words (still short fiction of the novelette  or novella type)  and 83 manuscript pages.   The good news is that story is flowing.  It’s going nonlinear in the “threaded plot” sense, as Aunt Grace, Rector of Defense, has just gotten home to find her place booby-trapped, while Ky, at dinner in another location, is about to be unpleasantly interrupted by the persons who rang the doorbell there, and a character from Cold Welcome has taken on a new identity. Read the rest of this entry »

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Jun 26

The Dun Mare’s Grandchild, Part Two

Posted: under snippet, Story, the writing life.
Tags: , ,  June 26th, 2016

As light revealed the land around them, Oktar knew they were north of the town, riding north, winterwards as the horsefolk said, and the reason he hadn’t been able to feel the rein was that he had none–his grandfather held Oktar’s horse’s rein as well as his own in his one good hand.  The horses moved at a brisk walk, ears forward, alongside a stone wall with sheep on the other side of it.  Oktar turned to look behind.  Nothing of the town showed but a blur of smoke in the distance.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Jun 22

Important Notice

Posted: under Life beyond writing.
Tags:  June 22nd, 2016

In spite of a post on an entertainment website about Gordon Lightfoot, no, I was not his second wife.   I’ve been married since 1969 to the same man, who is not (and, no disrespect to Mr. Lightfoot, I’m glad of that) Gordon Lightfoot.   Most of you would have figured that out yourselves, if you’d ever run into the post, but since it’s out there,  someone who knows you like my books may pull a “Did you know…?” on you and you can help me out by stomping on the rumor if it’s still alive.  (It’s on an internet site.  It will be there forever.)

I’ve informed the site, but who knows if they’ll bother to make any correction.  So I’m being pro-active or something similar.   (mirrored on Universes blog)

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