May 17th, 2013

house of leaves

"When my last friend should leave me..."

Brown Bird's David Lamb has become seriously ill from a condition that has yet to be diagnosed. As a result, he and MorganEve have already had to cancel the remainder of their tour after he wound up hospitalized in Houston. They've returned to Rhode Island and are awaiting the results of further tests, and having to deal with the $29,000 medical bill that's already been incurred, plus lost income from the canceled tour dates. The band has set up a donation page. Brown Bird has brought Kathryn and I both a tremendous amount of enjoyment, and we urge you to consider making a donation. Thank you.

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Day before yesterday – which would be Wednesday – I didn't begin Chapter 12 of Boxcar Tales, as planned. Late on Tuesday night I'd had a bolt-from-the-blue revelation about what's actually going on in the last third of the story, which meant that I had to do rewrites to #9 and #10. Yes, this is called making work for myself. But this idea is so, so much better than what I originally thought was going on. This is also a great example of how I make it all up as I got along, with virtually no forethought-outlines-etcetera. Anyway, I spoke with my editor, and he said, yes, it wasn't too late to make the changes. Fortunately, Steve Lieber had not drawn that far ahead. So, I spent the day rewriting – which I loathe doing. But, in the end, I was sure I'd done the right thing. So, I sent the rewrites along to David Chabon, my editor at Dark Horse, and, by the way, Michael Chabon's brother, along with the script for #11. Plus, Danielle Stockley – my editor at Penguin – and I have begun trying to put together decent flap copy for Red Delicious, because what the copy writer came up with was...well, I said it "sucks." But that's a very me thing to say. Plus more work on the Centipede Press edition of The Drowning Girl: A Memoir, so a hectic, busy day on Wednesday.

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Is this the way my mind works,
Forwards, always forwards?
Is this the way my brain waits,
Backwards, sideways?
~ Wye Oak

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Yesterday, the temperature here in Providence soared to 82˚F, and thank fuck. Spooky and I left the house and just...wandered. I couldn't afford a day off, but I took one, anyway. We went back to Paper Nautilus Books (again, I was good and bought nothing) at Wayland Square. We walked up and down Thayer Street. We drove and listened to Wye Oak and R.E.M. I went into a head shop for the first time in years. The sun was brilliant and white and hot on my winter-pale skin. I looked at green trees and ancient houses and birds. I thought about the sea, and we should have gone. Anyway, at Paper Nautilus I decided to take photos of things that were not (well, mostly things that were not) books. Marvelous and ordinary things you might not expect to find in a bookshop, but which help to make Paper Nautilus so cool. This is just one reason I hate the sterility of ebooks.

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I have notified my agent of my very, very tentative thoughts of writing a fourth Siobhan Quinn novel. If writing Cherry Bomb doesn't kill me. Partly, this is because I'm nowhere near emotionally ready yet to write another novel of the same caliber or personal investment as The Drowning Girl: A Memoir, nor have I an idea yet for a novel of that sort. Were I to do this, it would possibly be called Wild Strawberries. But it's just an "if." Treat it as such.

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PLEASE have a look at the current eBay auctions, which end today. I have remiss in speaking of them. Thank you.

Loving the Sun and Air Through My Window (Even If It's Much Cooler Today),
Aunt Beast