Yesterday was the sort of last-minute tedium I'd expected, getting the galley pages of The Red Tree ready to go back to Manhattan, the long letter I had to write detailing why I'd made the changes that I'm asking for (most were pretty obviously necessary). But, by three o'clock or so, it was done, and Spooky ferried the corrected pages away to the post office. At this point, the book truly is out of my hands, excepting all the promotional work I hope to do for it. Many of the problems with the galleys were formatting issues, which I think resulted from the way Penguin's having to rush the production schedule to meet the August 4 release date. But, hopefully all will be made right. As much as I care for this novel, I hope not to read it again for a long, long time. You guys get to read it next, and hopefully you will not be to thrown by what you find. It's different. I think it will be less of a surprise to readers of Sirenia Digest than to my readers who don't take the digest. I'd have never been able to puzzle my way through this one if not for all the ways I've grown as a writer since the digest began, all those experiments and stretching exercises it's allowed me to try.
Also, I did an interview about Stoker and Dracula for an Irish literary festival. And answered a bunch of email. It was a long, long day. Oh, and I've not left the house since April 30th.
Today, I need to begin a new short story for an sf/f anthology (TBA).
After the writing, before dinner, I watched an episode of Nova online, about the discovery in China of the four-winged, feathered dromaeosaurid theropod Microraptor and the evolution and biomechanics of flight in non-avian and avian theropods. Spooky made quesadillas for dinner; it was Cinco de Mayo, after all.
Later, we watched Kathryn Bigelow's Strange Days (2005; screenplay by James Cameron). I was very fond of this film when it was released, and it's aged fairly well in the fourteen years since. But there's no denying it's at least half an hour too long, maybe more. Graeme Revell's soundtrack is still one of its best attributes. And then there was a little WoW, not a lot. We did a few quests in Zangarmarsh for the Cenarion Expedition. Shah still doesn't trust the night elves, and likely she never will. There are a few WoW screencaps behind the cut, taken during the last three or four nights:
It was never a good idea, letting Shah look out for an orphan, even if it was Children's Week. In Tanaris, getting ready to take the kiddo back home to Shattrath. Suraa and her orphan are on the right.
Shaharrazad and her succubus, Drusneth, after the defeat of a Shivarra named Hathyss the Wicked.
Shah surveys the Bone Wastes and, literally, the edge of the world, and wonders why she didn't stay in Orgrimmar.
Also, a question from a reader. "Idoru-X" writes, "Just learned through old entries of your blog that back in the day Poppy Z. Brite and you were asked to pitch an X-files novel. I'm curious as to how that would have turned out. Could you perhaps comment on your blog on what the proposal was about?"
Sure. The proposal was written in July and August of 1995. It would have been a story called Dead Kids, about secret government projects and toxic waste spawning cannibalistic zombie street kids in New Orleans. I still have the various incarnations of the proposal, and I might even toss it into the next issue of Sirenia Digest, if Poppy doesn't mind.
Finally, is it just me, or has anyone else noticed that comments to posts on LJ are dropping off. I've been seeing this trend now for the last year, with my journal and those of other writers. I fear that actual blogs have become old hat, what with emergence of Twitter and Facebook. I've not seen an actual drop in people reading the journal; there are just far fewer comments. Just a thought. A thought and a question.