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Yesterday was a much-needed day off. On Tuesday, I wrote a very respectable 1,665 words and reached THE END of "Pickman's Other Model" (total word count, 9,892). And that made eight straight days of writing, and at least eleven days since my last "day off." I very much like how the story turned out, subtler than I'd planned, more suggested than shown — you know the drill. And you can read it in Sirenia Digest #28, if you've subscribed, and if not, that's easy to fix.

Obama took Mississippi, which I entirely expected, but am pleased with, nonetheless.

Yesterday, the postman or UPS or somebody delivered my comp copies of of the mass-market paperback 2nd edition of Murder of Angels. And even though the book has a street date of April 1st, Amazon is still not taking orders. I suspect this is because they bought so many remaindered copies of the tpb, the ones that I was supposed to be able to buy, but couldn't, because my former editor "forgot" to let me know, etc. Regardless, Barnes & Noble is now taking orders, and you can order a copy just by following this link. And if you can, please do, because I'd like these editions to stay in print a while. I like how the mass-market paperback turned out. I'd forgotten, until yesterday, that I actually began this book in 2001, then shelved it and wrote Low Red Moon in 2002, and only came back to Murder of Angels in 2003. How do you forget a thing like that?

Not enough sleep last night. I really have to make an effort to be in bed by 2 ayem or so until this upcoming appearance is done (no matter how unnatural going to bed at 2 may feel). Originally, today was to have been spent shopping, finding a couple of outfits for the trip to Maryland next weekend, because I've not made anything like a public appearance since November 2004 (except the Lovecraft documentary thing last April). But there's a bunch of the busyness of writing I must attend to today, instead. And it's actually a relief, because I hate shopping for clothes that much.

So, yesterday Spooky and I made a 2 p.m. matinée of Roland Emmerich's 10,000 BC (a date that marks the beginning of the Mesolithic, by the way). This is slightly odd, because I do so despise the films of Roland Emmerich. Still, I've seen most of them at least once. Independence Day? Hated it. The Day After Tomorrow? Hated it. Stargate and Universal Soldier and Godzilla? Let's not even go there. Anyway, I've had a thing for the "cave man" subgenre since I was a kid, and after seeing those gorgeous shots of mammoth and phorusrhacid birds, how could I stay away, Roland Emmerich or no? And I went in with the mindset that this was the sort of story that Edgar Rice Burroughs or Robert E. Howard or H. Rider Haggard might have written, a sort of big-budget Conanesque thing. And as it turns out, it is pretty much exactly that. And having gone in with that set of expectations, and much to my surprise, I actually enjoyed the film. It's not a Very Good Movie, but it's great eye candy, and it's exactly the sort of film ERB or REH would have written. It helps that I've had a thing for Cliff Curtis since The Fountain (2006) and Sunshine (2007). And that the creature SFX are really quite good. Yes, the science is shit. The history is absurd. The geography is even screwed up. And one could also make arguments concerning sexism and the problem of "Mighty Whitey" coming to the rescue, but, and still, taking the film strictly on its own merits, as what I think it was intended to be, it mostly succeeds, which is more than I can say for any other film this man has directed. Well, the no-sacrifice ending was sort of a cop out, that's true (and compounded the absurdities). Point is, I had fun, and I think, these days, films are so expensive, especially SFX extravaganzas (and 10,000 BC cost a whopping $140 million), and there's so much bullshit hype, that it's hard to just enjoy what should merely be a popcorn movie, a big dumb bit of fun. Anyway, I never thought I'd live long enough to enjoy a Roland Emmerich film.

Later, we had a good walk in Freedom Park (and saw two of our local red-tailed hawks). Then lots of rp in Toxia, and two more episodes of Angel ("Calvary" and "Salvage"). A decent enough day off, all in all. There will be fewer and fewer of these as June approaches. Anyway, yes, many annoying things to be done today, and the platypus just reminded me that talking about cave-man movies will not make them go away. Oh, and if you've said that you want to be part of the Sirenia Players, and you've told me so but have not yet received an invitation, please, please remind me again (and give me your SL username). Right now, we have 13 members, but more are welcome.

Comments

( 25 comments — Have your say! )
nykolus
Mar. 13th, 2008 05:40 pm (UTC)
OT
just had to let you know, i received my copy of ToP&W the other day and that it is quite a lovely book. i fondled and sniffed it for a few minutes before i could bring myself to rip the plastic off. i almost didn't want to. truly great job on this one. thank you.
chris_walsh
Mar. 13th, 2008 05:43 pm (UTC)
Not that it gets me to want to see it, but I liked that local critic Mike Russell called 10,000 B.C. basically a modern-day Ray Harryhausen film. Summing up: "It's really stupid, but it's an excuse for cool effects."
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 05:44 pm (UTC)
Summing up: "It's really stupid, but it's an excuse for cool effects."

Well said.

Edited at 2008-03-13 05:45 pm (UTC)
sclerotic_rings
Mar. 13th, 2008 05:55 pm (UTC)
Now I know for a fact that you're the cool little sister I never had, because I loathe clothes-shopping as much as you do. I can't even compare it to a trip to see the dentist, because I had such good experiences with dentists that I look forward to a good cleaning the way most people look forward to a trip to the beach. No, let's just say that I loathe clothes-shopping, especially the "try it on" trips as opposed to the "I know what I want, so can I get it now?" trips, so much that I'd almost sooner go to another Readercon before I'd go clothes-shopping. If I needed to get another business suit, I'd have to think long and hard, and that's even with the threat of having to be on a panel with Darrell Schweitzer.
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:06 pm (UTC)

Now I know for a fact that you're the cool little sister I never had

I always wanted an older brother with an acerbic wit and a broad knowledge of science, who also hates buying clothes. We both win!
sclerotic_rings
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:44 pm (UTC)
Cool. I'll get the papers set up, and we can adopt each other. You don't mind if I set up the birthday party early, do you?
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:08 pm (UTC)

You don't mind if I set up the birthday party early, do you?

Not as long as it's in Rhode Island...
sclerotic_rings
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:32 pm (UTC)
You're going to move up there that early? Wow. I would have figured that you'd be moving in and getting situated around your birthday, but I guess you're getting a bit more proactive on this than I would.
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:36 pm (UTC)

You're going to move up there that early? Wow. I would have figured that you'd be moving in and getting situated around your birthday, but I guess you're getting a bit more proactive on this than I would.

We'll be moving right after my birthday (which is May 26th), around the first of June, when our present leave is up. But yeah, it'll be here before I'm ready for it.
(Deleted comment)
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC)

How are you liking Year Zero, this time through?

I'm loving it. I think it truly is one of their best albums. And right now I'm wishing there was a Moby remix of "Zero-Sum."
(Deleted comment)
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:40 pm (UTC)

I can't understand why so many people disliked that album...

Perhaps because it said what they didn't want to hear, and projected a mood they didn't want to have to feel.
happyspector
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:00 pm (UTC)
Actually, ERB was about exactly the vibe I got from the trailers (I've yet to get a satisfyingly REH vibe in a PG-13 package... Damn near oxymoronic notion, I'd say [chris_walsh, are you with me on this? Paging Dr. Walsh!], with the possible exception of Chronicles of Riddick... and even that didn't totally manage it 'til we got the real version on disc).

Speaking of S&S-type stuff, I've been meaning to tell you I FINALLY got to read your Beowulf novelization. Now that my life is drawing and quartering my time and energies less, I'll have to write an Amazon review soon.

In brief, let me respond to your self-deprecation on it not being all your own: A novelization of a screenplay is as much the novelist's vision as a finished film is the director's. Neil and Roger wrote a great script. Robert Zemeckis made it into a fun afternoon at the movies. You wrote it into a novel that's rousing, poignant (often funny, often sad, sometimes both at once), exciting, suspenseful, always vivid and sometimes downright hallucinatory in its powerful imagery... I cared for and identified with both Beowulf and Grendel in a way I'd wanted to, but couldn't quite in the movie, and likewise felt for Grendel's mother... came away both profoundly chilled by her and with a sense of awe at the unsung history she embodied...

In short, it was that all too rare type of book that reminded me why I love a great rousing tale of heroic fantasy and adventure.
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:09 pm (UTC)

In brief, let me respond to your self-deprecation on it not being all your own: A novelization of a screenplay is as much the novelist's vision as a finished film is the director's. Neil and Roger wrote a great script. Robert Zemeckis made it into a fun afternoon at the movies. You wrote it into a novel that's rousing, poignant (often funny, often sad, sometimes both at once), exciting, suspenseful, always vivid and sometimes downright hallucinatory in its powerful imagery... I cared for and identified with both Beowulf and Grendel in a way I'd wanted to, but couldn't quite in the movie, and likewise felt for Grendel's mother... came away both profoundly chilled by her and with a sense of awe at the unsung history she embodied...

In short, it was that all too rare type of book that reminded me why I love a great rousing tale of heroic fantasy and adventure.


Wow. Thank you. The novelization/director analogy is sort of interesting, and had not previously occurred to me. I am especially pleased by what you said regarding feeling sympathy for Beowulf, Grendel, and the Merewife, as it was an area I went to especial trouble with.
happyspector
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:25 pm (UTC)
I am especially pleased by what you said regarding feeling sympathy for Beowulf, Grendel, and the Merewife, as it was an area I went to especial trouble with.

Aye, one local critic said of the film something to the effect of "Turns the Beowulf legend into the story of the asshole jock who knocks up the slutty cheerleader." While that's a bit harsh on the film overall, there's an element of truth there, at least in the first half, which had some truly eye-rolling moments to that effect. The Beowulf who comes across in your book didn't give me that vibe at all, in fact felt much closer to Gerard Butler's characterization in Beowulf & Grendel.
kambriel
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:02 pm (UTC)
Not sure what kind of look you're going for, but you know I'm always happy to help if I can on the clothes-front, with a minimum of shopping-fuss for you :)
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:11 pm (UTC)

Not sure what kind of look you're going for, but you know I'm always happy to help if I can on the clothes-front, with a minimum of shopping-fuss for you :)

Thanks. Alas, I fear I need dull "street" clothes for this appearance, and will likely be settling for whatever I can scrounge from The Gap (gag) and Express (gag). But after we get to Providence, I'll be talking to you about real clothes.
deekskusting
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:03 pm (UTC)
Done and done. Murder of Angels pre-ordered from B&N!
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:07 pm (UTC)

Done and done. Murder of Angels pre-ordered from B&N!

I do hope that you enjoy it. Thanks.
stsisyphus
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC)
The arrival of ToP&W was a delightful surprise on my return from a quick trip out of town, so I'll be sitting that in the FuckingNext* spot of my bookpile.

Spooky and I made a 2 p.m. matinée of Roland Emmerich's 10,000 BC

I figured this would be the last movie you folks would go see. I mean, I'm crap with my prehistory knowledge, but even I couldn't deal with the ludicrous suspension of disbelief necessary for this film. Not to mention, I was just waiting for Whitey to bellow, "FREEEEEEEEDOOOOOOOOOOOMM!!" even during the trailers.

By comparison, I found The Bank Job quite a reasonable movie on many levels - the least of which would be anything resembling an action movie (which, praise Zod, it was not).

* As opposed to my "Next, Really", "Probably Next", "Pretty Soon", "Oo, I oughtta", and "Dammit, I Need to Read That", slots on said pile (which are the priority slots).
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:09 pm (UTC)
I figured this would be the last movie you folks would go see.

What can I say. I'm a sucker for crappy cave-man movies.

By comparison, I found The Bank Job quite a reasonable movie on many levels - the least of which would be anything resembling an action movie (which, praise Zod, it was not).

Glad to hear it. It's a film I'm looking forward to seeing.

Edited at 2008-03-13 08:10 pm (UTC)
sovay
Mar. 13th, 2008 06:44 pm (UTC)
Point is, I had fun, and I think, these days, films are so expensive, especially SFX extravaganzas (and 10,000 BC cost a whopping $140 million), and there's so much bullshit hype, that it's hard to just enjoy what should merely be a popcorn movie, a big dumb bit of fun.

"Came a time, saith the old tales, when the great ice sheets retreated and early man advanced upon the earth—a new man, named Homo Hollywoodus for the stylishness of his dreadlocks (extensions by Trog) and for the perfection of the teeth of his women (caps by Dr. Gnar of Beverly Hills). And, lo, these new people did hunt the woolly mammoth and the 'spear-toothed' tiger and did follow much too closely the plot laid down by the great shaman Mel Gibson in ‘'Apocalypto.' And they did call this new movie '10,000 B.C.,' and it was awfully dopey but also kind of fun."
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:05 pm (UTC)

"Came a time, saith the old tales, when the great ice sheets retreated and early man advanced upon the earth—a new man, named Homo Hollywoodus for the stylishness of his dreadlocks (extensions by Trog) and for the perfection of the teeth of his women (caps by Dr. Gnar of Beverly Hills). And, lo, these new people did hunt the woolly mammoth and the 'spear-toothed' tiger and did follow much too closely the plot laid down by the great shaman Mel Gibson in ‘'Apocalypto.' And they did call this new movie '10,000 B.C.,' and it was awfully dopey but also kind of fun."

Spooky was just reading me this review, actually, and my first thought was that people who choose to criticize a film, in part, for its dopey science, should get their own right. That is, it would be Homo hollywoodensis. Sorry. I'm in a pedantic mood. ;-)
sovay
Mar. 13th, 2008 10:20 pm (UTC)
That is, it would beHomo hollywoodensis. Sorry. I'm in a pedantic mood.

Yeah, like I'm going to complain.
girfan
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:04 pm (UTC)
Just to let you know, I found a copy of Threshold and bought it to help with your bills. (this was at a local bookstore, not online).
greygirlbeast
Mar. 13th, 2008 08:06 pm (UTC)

Just to let you know, I found a copy of Threshold and bought it to help with your bills. (this was at a local bookstore, not online).

Thank you!
( 25 comments — Have your say! )