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Two by two, hands of blue.

Up too early. But not as early as Spooky, and there's a story there. I'll get to it in a moment.

I have been seized by a terrible panic, that I have to get back to work now, or certain doom will descend upon me. And, really, it's only a slight exaggeration. I only have a few months to finish a novel I've hardly begun. I have to keep the digest going. I have other deadlines. Moving to Providence negated none of that, cardboard canyons or no cardboard canyons, exhaustion or no exhaustion. The movers still have not come with our furniture, by the way, and the novelty of the air mattress has worn thin. We were told we could expect the truck here by Friday, at the latest. So, hopefully, we'll hear something today.

You know what's really annoying? Well, then, I'll tell you. I keep this journal primarily to promote my writing. That means, oftentimes, I keep certain opinions to myself, knowing that if I speak my mind on those subjects, I'll alienate readers (or potential readers). And lately, I find myself wanting to opine on a great number of touchy subjects. But if I succeed in alienating readers, I have defeated the primary purpose of this journal. So, I ask you — how many here would stop reading if I just opened up and really spoke my mind? On anything and everything, from Hilary Clinton's refusal to step aside to the wholesale rape of the environment by humans to 133t-speaking idiots on Second Life? Of course, no such poll would ever be scientific. I'd need, literally, thousands of replies, and I'd likely only get a few dozen, maybe a hundred if I bothered to set up a poll. So. Just thinking aloud here. It's a curious sort of Catch-22. Some will say I'm not giving readers enough credit, but many, many times I've had people email to say they will no longer read my LJ or my books because I've said X, Y, or Z. And, yes, I do need readers who do not share the same views as I do. Otherwise, I would starve on the street.

As for yesterday, it was chilly and rained hard all day long. A wonderful, steady rain. It was Byron's last day in Rhode Island, and what did he want to do with it? Go to another location of Newbury Comics, this time at Providence Place mall. It's like an annex of Nerd Heaven (though, of course, the original location of Newbury Comics is on Newbury Street in Boston). My feet still hurt, so, mostly, I sat outside the shop and watched people. I used to do a lot of people watching. They can be more interesting than watching birds, every now and then. Some moron tried to shoplift from Newbury, him and his girlfriend, and they got caught. And I marveled at the droopy jeans. When the hell is this going to cease to be cool? Seriously, when the crotch of your jeans is down to your knees, it's time to see a therapist about those feelings of penile inadequacy you suffer from.

So, yeah. I watched surly teens. Surly white teens. Surly black teens. Surly Hispanic teens. I'm not sure where all the surly Asian, Middle Eastern, and Indian teens were. Maybe they only sulk about the mall on Fridays or something. Anyway, Byron found the special edition of the new Weezer album, which was problematic, as he'd bought the regular edition (five tracks shorter) in Warwick the day before. Solution? He bought the limited, and then gave me the regular. And, yes, it rocks.

Back home —— it was raining too hard to make the trip to Lovecraft's grave at Swan Point —— I finished reading David Rains Wallace's Neptune's Ark: From Ichthyosaurs to Orcas. A really wonderful book, and I recommend it highly to anyone with a general interest in the evolution of secondarily marine tetrapods along the western coast of North America. Maybe I'll try to write more on the book later, as I feel it deserves a more thoughtful comment than that. It got me through the long drive up from Atlanta, it and HPL —— "The Colour Out of Space" (one of his very best) and "The Lurking Fear" (not one of his very best).

Here we come to the part of the entry that explains why I'm not very awake, and why Spooky's worse off than I am. Byron's flight out of Providence was scheduled for 5:59 p.m., but bad weather to the south —— in Virginia, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere, delayed the flight an hour. We sat with him until almost seven, then swung by Whole Foods to get some dinner and other essentials. And then, later, while I was having a much needed bath, Byron called to say that, because of the weather, the flight had been canceled. So, Spooky had to drive back to the airport to retrieve him. While she was gone, I read the start of Joss Whedon's Fray and started breaking down some kitchen boxes. When the two of them returned, Byron and I sat and talked a long time about comics —— my feelings about having done The Dreaming and the mess that it became, DC/Vertigo editorial policies, comics in general, and, finally, The Red Tree. Because I can rarely resist a captive audience, I read him the first two sections of Chapter One. And then there was bed, about midnight, because Spooky had to get him back to the airport for an 8 ayem flight, which means they had to be there by at least 7:30 or so. Blegh.

Long day ahead of me. For one, I have to deal with at least some of the backed up email. But I shall leave you with a photo, me and Spooky out front of the house, taken late on Tuesday (we have the second floor). It's not the best photo in the world, because I was tying my shoe, and it was taken with a Blackberry, and there's some weird foreshortening going on, but...I like it. It is so rare that Spooky will let me post a photo of her. For that matter, it's rare these days I want to post a photo of me. Photo (by Byron) behind the cut:


( 87 comments — Have your say! )
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Jun. 5th, 2008 02:06 pm (UTC)
For what it's worth, I would not stop reading if you spoke your mind here. I would love it.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:14 pm (UTC)
I've heard it all before, but speak if you must. Oh shit! I just tumped my coffee over all over my desk. Didn't get on computer. Gotta go.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:15 pm (UTC)
I for one would not stop reading if you spoke your mind here, no matter how much I disagreed with your thoughts. I respect your opinions as an inteligent, thoughful human being and would love to hear more of them.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:25 pm (UTC)
hey, it's your journal. say what's on your mind. if i don't wanna read it, i ain't gonna read it. won't stop me from buying your work nor subscribing to the digest cuz i think you're the bomb-diggity.

nice pic too.

and just because: http://www.raycaesar.com/pages/GalleryIndex.html
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:26 pm (UTC)
I would love to hear more of your opinions on life, the universe and everything, but I also understand the fear of sharing too much and alienating the less tolerant of your readership. On the other side of the equation though, sharing more of yourself could also expand your audience when people hear there's an author out there that shares their philosophies. There's also the argument that you might be able to clear more space in your head for writing if you express the things that are bouncing around in your head holding up your attention.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:29 pm (UTC)
I wouldn't stop reading. This is possibly due to having met you IRL. Don't know. Just write what you want to write-I'll still be here!
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:31 pm (UTC)
I know some folks solve the whole "this is for my work n stuff but I want to post personal things as well" by starting a strictly personal journal which is a bit harder to get to. Not sure if you'd like to go that direction, but it's an option. Put me in the voices that wouldn't mind you speaking your mind here.

Plus, that is a great photograph. I think you two look good.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:37 pm (UTC)
I doubt I'd stop reading, since I read writers' journals to get to know the writers, and opinions are certainly part of anyone.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:39 pm (UTC)
You know, I honestly wish I could say that it wouldn't matter what opinions you voice, because it shouldn't, but then I rememembered how I lost my taste for Orson Scott Card's novels after I read a particularly vile essay of his on homosexuality (not that I expect you to write anything like that). And, yeah, Dave Sim on women - that sort of spoiled Cerebus for me as well.

What I CAN say is that it MOSTLY won't matter to me, as a reader, what you say. Mostly I'll just think it's interesting - that's why I love reading author blogs, after all. But should I read something here that really, really go against my grain then it might.
Jun. 5th, 2008 03:00 pm (UTC)

then I rememembered how I lost my taste for Orson Scott Card's novels after I read a particularly vile essay of his on homosexuality

See, I didn't like OSC's fiction to start with, but, yes, he has written truly vile things about homosexuals, and he's one of the few author's I wouldn't read because of his politics, his attitudes towards gays and lesbians (though I didn't read him, anyway).

At any rate, thanks for the candid reply.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:42 pm (UTC)
Here's hoping it does warm up for the weekened. :)
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:52 pm (UTC)
Few things are worse than some pig-person deciding that giving an author 75 cents eighteen months after buying a book from a store gives him or her the right to demand either silence or compliance with political or aesthetic opinions.

I hear it so often, I even have an lj icon about it.
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:56 pm (UTC)
Few things are worse than some pig-person deciding that giving an author 75 cents eighteen months after buying a book from a store gives him or her the right to demand either silence or compliance with political or aesthetic opinions.

Nice. Thanks.

Edited at 2008-06-05 02:56 pm (UTC)
Jun. 5th, 2008 02:55 pm (UTC)
I'll keep reading.
Jun. 5th, 2008 03:00 pm (UTC)
I love this photo, it makes me so happy!

Also, I finally have a moment to read, so when I can scrape together the change to get a couple of your latest books, I will do so- SO, you have gained a reader, in a sense, so you can afford to alienate at least one.
Jun. 5th, 2008 03:01 pm (UTC)
Spooky looks like she's been out clubbing all night and is waiting for a cab to take her home. You look like you're forming a harsh and unpopular opinion about your shoe that will cause all your readers to stop buying your books.

I would say, write about anything in your journal except your shoe. We all have fond and sentimental feelings about that shoe, and if you write mean things about it we'll all abandon you and read Dean Koontz.
Jun. 5th, 2008 03:03 pm (UTC)

I would say, write about anything in your journal except your shoe. We all have fond and sentimental feelings about that shoe, and if you write mean things about it we'll all abandon you and read Dean Koontz.

Yes, ma'am. Note to self: The shoe is sacrosanct.

Edited at 2008-06-05 03:04 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - robyn_ma - Jun. 5th, 2008 03:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
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Jun. 5th, 2008 03:04 pm (UTC)
I think most people here would be ok with you voicing your opinions simply because you don't seem to be the type to suddenly start promoting crazy nazist ideals or something like that. Honestly, if writers won't voice their opinions, who will? :)

I got into your writing recently, on recommendation from my husband. I wouldn't stop reading, mostly because I don't think I can. :) Your books are awesome. I don't know how to explain it, but when I read them, it makes everything in my life ... sharper, if you will.

Great photo.
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( 87 comments — Have your say! )