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Another rough night last night. Is this becoming the insomnia journal? It has been before, so shall it be again. Spooky's calling my doctor in a bit to see if we can double the Prazosin tonight. Tiddley pom. Dreams I won't get into. I lay in bed until sometime after three, then took an Ambien (insuring I'd be a zombie this ayem), got up, and listened to the Audible.com version of Daughter of Hounds until almost four.

Yesterday (which followed a good night's sleep) was unproductive. I have a story due in at the beginning of July that must be both supernatural and noir. Which should be easy as pie for me. I've certainly done it before. But I'm having trouble finding the subject matter of this particular story, trying to avoid lame, done-to-death plots, like hard-boiled, world-weary male detective falls in love with femme fatale who, it turns out, really is a femme fatale (i.e., vampire, siren, succubus, werewolf, etc.). I am looking for the artful solution to this problem, one that won't make me yawn. Because I love the marriage of noir and dark fantasy, when it's done well. Last night, trying to sleep, thinking about potential stories, the title "The Maltese Unicorn" popped into my head. Gagh. No, I will not be writing a story called "The Maltese Unicorn." I wanted to punch myself in the face just for thinking of it.

My thanks to everyone who bid in the lastest round of eBay auctions. Another round will begin soon. Meanwhile, have a look at Spooky's sea-glass jewelery at Dreaming Squid Dollworks.

Last night we watched Olatunde Osunsanmi's The Fourth Kind, a film so stupid that not even Milla Jovovich could redeem it. And that's saying something. I actually enjoyed the most recent Resident Evil film, almost entirely because of the presence of Milla Jovovich. Don't get me wrong, I (obviously) love the "faked documentary" approach, when it's done well. Here, it's not. Never is it even halfway convincing. And don't get me started on the Sumerian ancient astronaut nonsense. Not a good movie, at all.

Anyway, enough for one morning. Comment if you dare. Lately, the number of those who dare has fallen off rather dramatically.

Comments

( 43 comments — Have your say! )
whiskeychick
May. 7th, 2010 04:11 pm (UTC)
.No, I will not be writing a story called "The Maltese Unicorn." I wanted to punch myself in the face just for thinking of it.

I have had those moments when in an insomniaic haze I've thought of ideas that are face-punching worthy.

You made me laugh reading your own story of such.

I look forward to a noir+dark fantasy tale from you. You do them so well.

Here's hoping sleep visits you at the appropriate time, place and length. I do so understand the battle with Monsieur Insomnia. He is such an evil one
greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 04:13 pm (UTC)

You made me laugh reading your own story of such.

I think the worse part was I actually considered doing it for about fifteen seconds.
(no subject) - whiskeychick - May. 7th, 2010 05:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - txtriffidranch - May. 7th, 2010 05:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
tsarina
May. 7th, 2010 04:15 pm (UTC)
I am now trying to imagine the Maltese Unicorn as a hard boiled detective story written in the voice of Lois Duncan and possibly involving a cult of teenage girls with Lisa Frank decorated Trapper Keepers and switchblades. It's really making my morning.
greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 04:19 pm (UTC)

I am now trying to imagine the Maltese Unicorn as a hard boiled detective story written in the voice of Lois Duncan and possibly involving a cult of teenage girls with Lisa Frank decorated Trapper Keepers and switchblades. It's really making my morning.

I actually had to stop and look up Lois Duncan, Trapper Keeper, and Lisa Frank...and now I wish I hadn't.

Edited at 2010-05-07 04:20 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - tsarina - May. 7th, 2010 04:52 pm (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - whiskeychick - May. 7th, 2010 05:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
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greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 05:00 pm (UTC)

I admit to laughing at the disgust over your Maltese Unicorn title.

If I punched myself in the face every time I had an idea that bad...well, there would be a lot of bloody nose.
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greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 05:30 pm (UTC)

How about a male fatale who really is a male fatale falling in love with a female detective, from his point of view?

Or just doing the whole thing lesbian, or with transgendered characters...

Problem is, yeah, role reversal/inversion is still pretty obvious.
txtriffidranch
May. 7th, 2010 05:19 pm (UTC)
Sorry: it's lack of time, not lack of interest. The Day Job just got particularly intense, I'm still unpacking from the move, and I'm trying to get my greenhouse and outside growing areas set up for a television interview at the end of the month. (When I say that my life could be videotaped and sold as some mutant fusion of Doctor Who and The Red Green Show, I'm not kidding.)

Edited at 2010-05-07 05:19 pm (UTC)
greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 05:29 pm (UTC)

(When I say that my life could be videotaped and sold as some mutant fusion of Doctor Who and The Red Green Show, I'm not kidding.)

Great. Now I have to go Google The Red Green Show.
(no subject) - txtriffidranch - May. 7th, 2010 09:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - whiskeychick - May. 7th, 2010 06:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
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fusijui
May. 7th, 2010 05:27 pm (UTC)
Having never emotionally matured past age 8, I have little choice but to ask, IS THAT A DARE?

Prazosin! One of the docs at my institute is big into prazosin-for-combat-related-PTSD research. Well, prazosin-for-anything, really. We're joking that he's trying to get them to put it in the HVAC system, but it's not that funny. Not a bad idea, really, either.

Re: the Maltese Unicorn, there's no requirement that your "supernatural and noir" story also has to be "serious and respectful", is there? Spade slowly and sourly unraveling the web of lies leading him to the rain-slicked ruins of Ġgantija, where lounges the cunning Maltese Unicorn itself, using virgins as salt-licks -- and is that a carrot in Sam's pocket?
greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 05:33 pm (UTC)

Re: the Maltese Unicorn, there's no requirement that your "supernatural and noir" story also has to be "serious and respectful", is there? Spade slowly and sourly unraveling the web of lies leading him to the rain-slicked ruins of Ġgantija, where lounges the cunning Maltese Unicorn itself, using virgins as salt-licks -- and is that a carrot in Sam's pocket?

I'm usually not suited to comedy, though it's not a bad approach. I'm just rarely good at it. I rarely even watch comedies...
(no subject) - fusijui - May. 7th, 2010 10:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - chris_walsh - May. 8th, 2010 01:02 am (UTC) - Expand
slothman
May. 7th, 2010 06:16 pm (UTC)

A story title like “The Maltese Unicorn” could be a challenge: just how far do you have to get from the glittery-rainbow unicorn before you stop feeling like punching yourself in the face and start thinking “I kind of like this!”? I’m reminded of the line in Poul Anderson’s Operation Chaos about no red-blooded American male being willing to admit he’s qualified for the unicorn cavalry...

One thing that I learned from playing Ars Magica is that you can find amazingly weird things in original sources (Pliny the Elder’s Natural History is much, much weirder than any Monster Manual); Richard Garfinkle managed to have great fun with that in Celestial Matters. The only data point I’m dredging up right now, though, is that technically “unicorn” could refer to a rhinoceros...

greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 06:17 pm (UTC)

The only data point I’m dredging up right now, though, is that technically “unicorn” could refer to a rhinoceros...

Or a dildo.
(no subject) - tinkbell - May. 9th, 2010 01:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
martianmooncrab
May. 7th, 2010 07:34 pm (UTC)
really is a femme fatale

when reading noir, they always seem to use the female spider theme for that ...
miakodadreams
May. 7th, 2010 09:03 pm (UTC)
Secondary characters
I tend to find the stereotypical main characters of noir a little hard to identify with, but the secondaries have a lot of potential that gets brushed aside. I'd look at them -- the detective's secretary, or a clever and perceptive waitress from his favorite diner, that sort of thing. (Yes, I did just flip through the Arkham Horror investigators for inspiration.) Love that game...
greygirlbeast
May. 7th, 2010 09:37 pm (UTC)
Re: Secondary characters

I tend to find the stereotypical main characters of noir a little hard to identify with,

Never been a problem for me..which may not be a good thing, I know.
valdary
May. 7th, 2010 09:24 pm (UTC)
My first thought on seeing Maltese Unicorn was of those little malt flavoured balls covered in chocolate, maltesers, so I was envisioning a weird Willy Wonka style story with unicorns sculpted of Cinder toffee.

Though thinking about it "The Falcon's Malteser" is a very good children's detective book.

I am tired also, though only because of watching late telly for inconclusive election results.

Hope you get back into a sleeping groove.

mojave_wolf
May. 7th, 2010 09:51 pm (UTC)
Is it horrible that I can actually imagine this being a decent story?

Of course, my first thought was to imagine it as a pure humor piece, which isn't normally your style (in anything I've read so far, anyway), but I could see you doing it not in a "funny ha ha" spoof way, but more in a "funny ha-wait, omfg that is so sad and why am I bleeding to death and this really isn't funny at all" way. I still think that story could work.

Also, I was about to recommend An Evil Guest until I remembered your blurb for it was one of the reasons I picked it up (my kind of thing exactly, but I usually for some reason can't appreciate Gene Wolfe the way others do. This wound up being the first thing I liked by him since There Are Doors back in the 80's).

& appropriately enough for this post, I just finished Farewell, My Lovely" on Tuesday.

I watched the first Resident Evil for lack of anything else to do at the time, and suprised myself by really liking it. I still really like it. The second one, not so much (tho I've seen worse movies, and with you on the yay Milla Jovovich). Haven't seen the further sequels.
jessamyg
May. 7th, 2010 10:29 pm (UTC)
Fourth Kind
And Fourth Kind looked like it might have been a film I would enjoy... thanks for the warning, but curiosity will still probably get the better of me. "The Maltese Unicorn"? Better to avoid I think!

Peter H
cimeara
May. 7th, 2010 11:34 pm (UTC)
Wellll... "The Maltese Unicorn" -could- refer to quite some MacGuffin, if you go Hitchcock instead of Chandler.

I support the Red-Green Show as awesome, though it's superficially very corny.

It will be cooler nights this weekend. Maybe that will help? We shifted rather quickly to summer weather and I found the adjustment hard to take.
cimeara
May. 8th, 2010 02:36 pm (UTC)
Ah. Apparently someone went Sherlock Holmes with it, according to IMDb.
chris_walsh
May. 8th, 2010 01:17 am (UTC)
Would going meta work? Call it "Supernatural Noir." ...with that period, to make it seem final and stuff. Think what Charlie Kaufman did with Adaptation, if that would inspire you.

Or think of it this way: would this be the sort of story Sarah Crowe could write?
stardustgirl
May. 8th, 2010 01:43 am (UTC)
I'll dare, though I usually subscribe to the idea of better to remain silent and thought a boring twat than to open my mouth and remove all doubt. Or something like that.

I had no idea what Prazosin was, so I went to Wikipedia and found:

Since 1983 prazosin has revolutionized the management of severe scorpion stings.

I'm not sure why I find the Drug Marketing Speak so hilarious, maybe because I'm hearing this in my head in the voice of Johnny Fever from WKRP.
fusijui
May. 10th, 2010 05:34 pm (UTC)
I work in research, not marketing. So I can only claim credit for involvement in the clinical trials that demonstrated the efficacy of a drug, not for the name given that drug: e.g., lubiprostone. (4 tha win!!!)
( 43 comments — Have your say! )