November 5th, 2005


sleeping woman types journal entry (in her sleep)

Yesterday, I did 1,231 words on Chapter Ten of Daughter of Hounds. I'd hoped to do 1,200 words, so I guess occasionally we really do get what we wish for — and then some. Today, I hope to do another 1,200 and extract myself from the jumble of soup cans and proceed down the aisle towards THE END. That sentence will make perfect sense to the initiated. Last night, at 2 a.m., I was lying awake in bed, talking through the end of the book with Spooky. All the possibilities and unrealized realities seem to have narrowed down to two paths, and now I have to make a choice between the two. It may not seem like much of a dilemma, but with only about 10,000 words remaining to be written, I find it very disturbing when the choices begin to appear as simple as this or that. I begin to worry that I'm allowing apparent dichotomy to blind me to other, less obvious options. Another thing that disturbs me. On Thursday, I was checking back through the ms., doing a continuity scan, and I discovered two long blocks of text highlighted in red. I have no idea whatsoever why I highlighted the two sections. They are clearly related to one another (same characters, same setting, same ideas being worked through), but red highlighting usually means I've found something wrong and mean to come back and fix it later. Only, here, in this case, I have no idea what I thought was wrong with these sections (probably because I highlighted them months ago). They seem fine. Perhaps it will become clear when I read through the ms., start to finish.

I have a rough sort of plan for the next three months or so. This month, I finish the first draft of Daughter of Hounds and send it off to my editor, try to find time to write the short children's book I thought of on Halloween night, and get the erotic vignette subscription service ready to launch. Then, in December, I write "Bainbridge" and do everything else that has to be done to get the ms. of Alabaster ready for Subterranean Press. I'll also be writing the first four vignettes for the sub service. In January, the service launches (unless it happens sooner) and then I spend the whole month editing and rewriting Daughter of Hounds (I've never done this with a novel before). In February, looking ahead, I have a short story to write, and it'll be time to start getting serious about the Next New Novel, whatever it shall be.

Speaking of the monthly erotic vignette subscription service (Bev Vincent has suggested I call it MERVISS, which I have to admit appeals to my inner NASA scientist, even if it isn't very sexy), I think I may have inadvertently caused some confusion yesterday when I announced that subpress will be sponsoring the project. Spooky and I, not subpress, will be collecting subscriptions via a new page at All subscription fees, minus a small percentage that goes to PayPal, will come directly to me. Subpress has not asked for a cut of the income derived from the subscriptions. Also, if you've indicated interest via the poll, the phorum, or e-mail, you have not yet actually subscribed. However, when we're ready to begin accepting subscriptions, you will have first crack at the limited number of slots available. We expect to begin accepting subscriptions sometime in the next few days. I'll announce it here and e-mail all those who've indicated interest, at least all that I have e-mail addys for (if you think I might not have you e-mail, or that I might not have the e-mail you wish to use for this particular purpose, write Spooky at, and she'll make a note of it). But I promise, everyone whose taken time the last week or so, since whenever the poll began, to express interest in the project will be able to get a subscription.

I'm having some sort of weird trouble updating to Blogger. Hopefully, that'll get worked out later this afternoon.

Yesterday afternoon, about six p.m. (Caitlín Standard Time, which is now an hour ahead of everyone who fell back), Spooky and I took Sophie to Freedom Park. Though I was very dubious of the undertaking, Spooky got her a harness and leash. There's no way on Earth this cat's gonna stand for a leash, thought I, but I was wrong, wrong, wrong. She hardly seemed to notice it and was extremely happy to be out in the Great Outdoors, despite all the dogs roaming about the park. If the weather's good this evening, we're taking her back, and Spooky will get some photos. Sophie was pretty much an outdoor kitty the first seven years I had her, but when I left Athens and moved back to Birmingham in '97, she became mostly an indoor cat. It was good to see her clawing trees again, instead of clawing furniture. We sat beneath a huge old oak, acorns and leaves falling around us (if was safer than sitting beneath a nearby pecan tree), while the squirrels chattered angrily overhead. It was nice.

And we had a good Kid Night, afterwards. We played a little FFX, watched all three Wallace and Gromit shorts (A Grand Day Out, A Close Shave, and The Wrong Trousers) and then another Outer Limits episode ("Don't Open Until Doomsday").

Okay. Time to make the frelling doughnuts. Please have a look at the eBay auctions. Note that the lettered edition of The Five of Cups includes a great deal of material not in the regular limited edition (a discarded prologue, deleted scenes/text, and extensive notes for a sequel, The Queen of Cups, which I shall likely never write), plus Monster Doodle Sculpture #4. The copy of In the Garden of Poisonous Flowers that we have up is the lettered edition, signed by both me and Dame Darcy (and it's one of the last few copies I have to sell on eBay). And there's Silk for a mere $9.99! Have a gander. Thanks.

Addendum: Before the Dinsoaurs

So, despite what they might be teaching the kiddos in Kansas these days, life on Earth was not pooped out over a mere six days some ten or fourteen thousand years ago at the whim of an overachieving, ominipotent white male god with too much time on his hands. Instead, it evolved over billions of years and way more cool stuff happened than that silly business with the snake and the apple. You can see some of it in a new Discovery Channel special airing this evening — Before the Dinosaurs — which takes a look at the animals that existed, well, before the damned dinosaurs. From the people who made the amazing Walking With Dinosaurs, Before the Dinosaurs (apparently called Walking With Monsters in Canada) uses CGI to recreate such ancient wonders as sea scorpions and sail-backed pelycosaurs. Don't miss it. Tonight, 7 and 11 p.m. (EST). This stuff really makes the creationists squirm...