There are partitions today, in this entry, as I need them to stop the various paragraphs to come from flowing one into the other as my thoughts are presently flowing one into the other.
I am ever surprised at how few comments I get regarding Sirenia Digest. But. Regarding No. 13, setsuled writes:
I read "The Voyeur in the House of Glass" a couple nights ago and I thought it was really beautiful. It seemed to me to be a reflection of the relationship between writers, readers, and the publishing industry with feeling similar to what's found in your posts on that subject. But the story succeeds well in making a less clinical perspective, making a more visceral one. I'm not sure, of course, you intended for the story to be a reflection of the reader/writer/publisher relationship, but I liked, in any case, that no one component in the story—audience, Voyeur, or Barker—were directly analogous to reader, writer, or publisher, instead each seeming to have characteristics of all.
I must admit this analogy was entirely accidental, and I did not see it myself until you pointed it out. Now that you have, though, it seems quite a reasonable interpretation. Lately, my subconscious is running circles 'round "me."
There's a nice review of Daughter of Hounds up at "The Agony Column." Here's a short bit I particularly liked:
This is because Kiernan more than most has a handle on what Lovecraft did and did well. Kiernan knows how to conjure the outside, the ancient, those forces that are so different from us so as to cause madness. She started her journey into an unknowable past with Threshold, and with each successive novel she's become better and better at conjuring both the actions and the emotions – or lack thereof – of those who encounter it. To my mind, Daughter of Hounds is her best yet, one of those novels where you can pick it up and open it to almost any page and find yourself immersed in images that summon the outer darkness into your snug little life.
I would argue that the journey began with Silk — at least it did for me — but otherwise, yeah. Nice review.
I think my lit agent's run away to Frankfurt without me. Ah, well.
A very fine quote from Frank Miller (1983), courtesy coppervale: Good work is not produced by a democracy, or a committee. It's produced by someone who does what satisfies himself, without living on reviews and applause.
Here in Atlanta, the freaky weather continues. The combined effects of an unexpected El Niño and global warming. Buds on dogwoods and other trees. Clover and dandelions. Green grass and moss. The Narcissus are sprouting. Spooky's mom, in Rhode Island, reports that the crocuses are doing likewise. Last night we still had my office window open at ten p.m. (CaST). It felt like late September or early October, or a summer night in New England, but not mid January in Atlanta.
The dream came back this morning. The one from a couple of days ago — missing syringes, legless albino lovers, etc. This so rarely happens, that a dream recurs for me (a different phenomenon than "interdream memories"), that I think it should be noted. I would prefer to forget it. That same apartment with flickering fluorescent bulbs and wet tile (ceramic tile) floor. Everything so very white. In bed with the albino, in more ways than one. And she's talking about the war in Taiwan and "feedback holes," and I don't interrupt her or ask questions. A doorway opposite the bed, no door, just a black doorway, and I can't take my eyes off it. There's a phonograph somewhere in the room playing Marlene Dietrich. I know it's a phonograph because the recording's scratchy. Of course, it could be a recording from a phonograph, fabricated history. "You should get that leak fixed," she says, the albino, and then she laughs. The sheets are damp, as well. A telephone rings, antique black Bakelite, a rotary thing from the '40s or '50s, and while the albino (I cannot recall her name, if she even has one) is talking on the phone, I slip out onto the fire escape and sit naked beneath a clear plastic umbrella, because it's raining, and I cannot tell if it's night or day, and I watch the excavation going on behind the building. Bizarre sorts of earth-moving machinery. It all seems oddly organic, those machines, and I'm very cold and wish I'd put my coat on. Later, the albino's climbing out the bedroom window, which leads to the fire escape, and now she has mechanical legs. Thin black things that whir and whine, each with a three-toed foot that clings magnetically to the rusted fire escape. They remind me of bird legs. I ask her if the rain isn't bad "for the gears," and she laughs. She sits down next to me. She has a gun, a gun I never see very well, and she sits next to me and presses the gun to my right temple. She talks about politics. I wake shivering, and now, two hours later, I'm still not quite warm and still not quite here.
I cannot think about this all damned day.
Cold, tired fingers,
Tapping out your memories.
Dazzled by the new.
It was all that I feared.
That whirling room.
We trade by vendu.
Is falling from me.
My poor soul,
All bruised passivity.