Today is the ninth anniversary of the inception of my online journal (whether we call it a blog, LJ, whatever). That's nine years, which sort of makes my head spin. It began at Blogger (where the first three years are still archived), then moved to LJ sometime in 2004. Nine years. That means if you're twenty (and I have trouble believing anyone's that young), you were only eleven when I made the first entry. I've probably made entries for 90% of the days in the last nine years. Off the top of my head, the only blogging author who's been at this longer than me is Neil. If I say that my writing career began in 1992— which is usually where I start, with the writing of The Five of Cups —my career records the second half of that eighteen years.
I've not been well the last few days, and I think most of it can be attributed to the insomnia, which is about as bad as it's ever been. I'm lucky to get six hours a night. And yet, on Sunday I wrote 1,040 words on "The Prayer on Ninety Cats," and on Monday I did another 1,224 words on the story. Yesterday, I took the day off, because I was feeling very bad and hadn't gone Outside since November 17th. I may be able to find The End today, or it may be tomorrow. Either way, it's an odd and ambitious and I hope very effective story. It's part loose biography (Elizabeth Bathory), part paean to old movie theatres, part screenplay, part dreamquest. And it's sort of written in second person, as per sovay's request. It will either be a feather in my cap or an impressive failure. The story will be appearing in Sirenia Digest #60.
Yesterday, we took in a matinée of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One. And what do I think? Having slept on it, I'd say that it's the pretty decent first half of what will probably be a pretty decent movie made from an utterly wretched novel (I say that as a Harry Potter fan). I think the filmmakers should have tried just a little harder to make the first half more like a complete film. It suffers the same way that The Matrix Reloaded suffered. Unlike a lot of geeks, I'm a geek who actually likes the last two installments of The Matrix, but only when they are watched back to back, because each one is half of the same film. Anyway, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One is beautifully filmed, well acted, and as scary and sad as it ought to be. I was mostly relieved that, unlike the book, Hermione doesn't spend the whole time sobbing.
I haven't done much reading the last couple of days, but I did finish the second Farscape graphic novel, Scorpius: Let Sleeping Dogs Lie, and "The Structure and Evolution of the Sauropod Tooth Battery," which is mostly concerned with Nigersaurus taqueti, one of the oddest-known sauropod dinosaurs (and one of my favorites).
I have been catching up on "television." Do we still call it that? Mostly, Spooky and I watch "television" on her laptop, on DVDs or streaming from Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and PBS. Anyway, the BBC Sherlock Holmes is fucking brilliant, and big props to Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, and the team of Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat. Awesome. And a very sexy Holmes.
The latest episode of Frank Darabont's The Walking Dead was an improvement over the third episode, which was just a little too "soap opera" for my taste. The episode's climactic zombie attack was nicely handled.
We're working our way through the latest season of Doctor Who. The transitions to new doctors are always hard on me, but I'm liking Matt Smith quite a lot. To me, Doctor Nine (Christopher Eccelston, and still my favorite), was the Angry Doctor. David Tenant was the Ecstatic Doctor. And now I'm thinking of Matt Smith as the Befuddled Doctor. Also, very much liking Amelia Pond (Karen Gillan).
Hammer Horror "scream queen" Ingrid Pitt is dead at age 73. She wrote the introduction to The Mammoth Book of Vampire Stories by Women (2001), which included my story, "So Runs the World Away."
And now, on the subject of the Cataclysm WoW expansion. The big 4.0.3 patch went live last night, which means we are now in the age after the sundering of the world by the dragon Deathwing (yeah, they really could have found a better name, like maybe "Deathwing" in Latin, at least). But, mostly, I think what we've seen of the expansion so far is pretty damn awesome. The rebuilt Orgimmar is a vast improvement, and the destruction wrought upon the world is impressive. They've even made the goblins look better, so I will definitely be rolling "Punkmuffin" as soon as I may.
I do have a couple of complaints. First, Blizzard should have specified how much time has passed since the cataclysm. Looking at the reconstruction of Orgrimmar alone (and there are many other factors I could cite), a minimum of ten years has to have passed, and maybe as long as twenty years. I know most WoW players do not think in terms of story, because most WoW players are not roleplayers. Most WoW players think rp is silly and beneath them. But I am a roleplayer, and this is important to me. Also, because so many quests were dumped and so many added, I've gone from being about seventy quests from getting Loremaster of Kalimdor to being many hundreds of quests from getting Loremaster of Kalimdor. That means the equivalent of maybe 200 hours of game play simply...lost. This could have been handled much, much better. But, these things aside, so far, this is a very fine expansion, far more impressive than Wrath of the Lich King.
Also, Eyes of Sylvanas (my Horde guild on the Cenarion Circle server) is still seeking members. And if you don't play WoW— and want to invite a giant time suck into your life —now's a great time to start. You can get the first two games for $5 each, and Lich King for another $10.
Okay, time to make the doughnuts. Comments welcome, just so I am reminded people are still reading (after nine years)...