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Yeah, that's a big long subject line, but it just seemed right somehow.

Yesterday, I did 1,416 words on Chapter Seven of The Red Tree. This finished the bit I was excerpting from Dr. Harvey's typescript regarding the serial killer Joseph Fearing Olney (1888-1926) and his murder spree (1922-1925). What I have to do today, the next part of the book, is, by comparison, a breeze. A significant factor in determining whether or not this novel will "work" depends upon whether or not its readers are bright enough to understand that when people sit down and write private journals, they do not, given the nature of private journals, include everything that a reader would "need" to know to understand it, or "want" to know to find the reading experience satisfactory. Or whatever. By definition, Sarah Crowe is writing something that she means no one else to ever read, and I cannot bring myself to cheat, on behalf of my audience, and have her toss in a bunch of exposition that would fill in the gaps all neat and tidy, but destroy the illusion that this is, in fact, an actual journal not meant to be read by anyone other than Sarah herself. Here's one of those places where I point to the fallacy of the "reader-writer contract." The story is my goddess (well, one of many). I serve the story and her needs. The readers are nice and all. Hell, I can't live without them. But they have to look out for themselves, because, as I said, I serve the story, not my readers.

After the reading, I had a nap while Spooky got Chinese takeaway. Then I had a hot bath. Then I edited a bunch of the photos from Monday's outing (behind the cut, below; more to come). Spooky baked an apple pie, and I filled a bottle with beach glass. Yesterday's reading was all scientifical: From Science (11 July 2008), "A Positive Test of East Antarctica-Laurentia Juxtaposition With the Rodina Supercontinent," and from the new Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (which I could finally get to, having finished the June issue), "New protocetid whales from Alabama and Mississippi, and a new Cetacean clan, Pelagiceti." For the second straight day, I did not leave the house.

And lots of World of Warcraft last night. Mithwen, the night-elf warrior, is now at Level 25, and Shaharrazad, the blood-elf warlock, is at Level 15. I've mostly been teaming up with Spooky (Syllahr, a Level 23 night-elf druid) for quests, and we're doing fine. But thinking of adding a third person, someone of a comparable level. I'll likely start a guild, just because. Maybe I'll call it "Wrath of the Goddess," or "Defenders of Elune," unless, of course, those names are taken. Last night, Mithwen and Syllahr (sisters, by the way) reached the Stonetalon Mountains via the Talondeep Path. Discovering the depredations of the Venture Company (all humans, goblins, and trolls, near as I could tell), we slaughtered loggers with merciless abandon. I am the Lorax, motherfuckers!

Later, we watched Tim Fywell's 2008 film adaptation of Sarah Waters' novel, Affinity. Victorian lesbians, spirit mediums, and con women. A gorgeous and moving, if ultimately flawed, film.

Anyway, here in Providence it's overcast and chilly. I think, however, that this is, ironically, the first warm office I've had since...since I left the first Liberty House loft in 2001. It doesn't look like I shall freeze this winter. And now, those photographs, because I must get to the words....





18th-Century graves in the Old North Burial Ground.



Old North Burial Ground; view to the southeast.



A headstone that had fallen over, and I had to brush away dead grass to photograph it.



Memento Mori



1738



The maples going red (view to the northwest).



View to the southeast.



Couldn't help but notice that the sandstone on this crypt is derived from the Triassic "red beds" of either Connecticut or Massachusetts.



Water pooled in the roots of a European beech.



From the Point Street Bridge, looking northeast up the Providence River, towards College Hill.



A lone cormorant, drying its wings.



The old pilings below Point Street Bridge. View to the north.

Photographs Copyright © 2008 by Caitlín R. Kiernan and Kathryn A. Pollnac

Comments

( 9 comments — Have your say! )
sa_jathan
Oct. 5th, 2008 04:48 pm (UTC)
Imitation of Christ
She doesn't have anything you want to steal. Well, nothing you can touch.

I miss the Richard Butler from this time. Gods, his beautifully haunting voice...

"Yesterday, I did 1,416 words on Chapter Seven of The Red Tree."

Here's hoping the rest of the month is as productive.

I am sitting down with SD September today. I am so looking forward to The Red Tree.
sovay
Oct. 5th, 2008 05:08 pm (UTC)
But they have to look out for themselves, because, as I said, I serve the story, not my readers.

Yay and amen. Also, I really want to read this book.

I am the Lorax, motherfuckers!

*ksnerk*

I think that needs a T-shirt.
greygirlbeast
Oct. 5th, 2008 05:17 pm (UTC)


I think that needs a T-shirt.


As do I.
whiskeychick
Oct. 5th, 2008 05:36 pm (UTC)
concur!

guess i best get my priesty up quick. but the words,they are slaving me away from any extra time. I long for the day when that is my first duty and not to working for the man, the kids, the hubby...blah blah blah.
tsarina
Oct. 5th, 2008 05:27 pm (UTC)
Give me private journals over exposition any day. I have to admit, my nosiness is not one of my most attractive qualities. But there is something to engaging, so satisfying to me about reading private words.
kambriel
Oct. 5th, 2008 06:36 pm (UTC)
I think, however, that this is, ironically, the first warm office I've had since...since I left the first Liberty House loft

I noticed that same kind of irony ~ that I was vastly colder inside the place we moved to in NC last year, than I was in Salem. That was certainly unexpected. Brick walls beat thin drywall anyday (well, except on the really hot days of course when it turns into a brick oven)!

Glad to hear you'll have a cozy place to live & work this Winter :)
humglum
Oct. 5th, 2008 07:09 pm (UTC)
Glad to hear you'll have a cozy place to live & work this Winter :)

We've got a gas fireplace in the parlor that is in the center of the apartment. I've been told by the woman upstairs and by our landlords (who used to live in this apartment) that the fireplace is enough to heat the whole apartment in the winter.

And, yes. I was quite shocked at how... ventilated houses in the south tend to be.
mellawyrden
Oct. 5th, 2008 07:08 pm (UTC)
you write:
"A significant factor in determining whether or not this novel will 'work' depends upon whether or not its readers are bright enough to understand that when people sit down and write private journals, they do not, given the nature of private journals, include everything that a reader would 'need' to know to understand it, or 'want' to know to find the reading experience satisfactory. Or whatever. By definition, Sarah Crowe is writing something that she means no one else to ever read, and I cannot bring myself to cheat, on behalf of my audience, and have her toss in a bunch of exposition that would fill in the gaps all neat and tidy, but destroy the illusion that this is, in fact, an actual journal not meant to be read by anyone other than Sarah herself."

& I flail about saying:
YES yes yes!! Write it the way you're writing it. The poetry is in what's there, and what's NOT there. Like archaeology, the matrix supports and describes what's missing.
(Deleted comment)
humglum
Oct. 6th, 2008 05:36 pm (UTC)


Yep. Got a paladin. She's a fierce little beast. I think we compliment one another nicely. Warlock with a minion and me with my healing skills and good armor.
( 9 comments — Have your say! )