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Comments would be good today. Thank you.

At last it can be told. As you know, constant readers, I wrote a novel titled Fay Grimmer, meant to be the second Siobhan Quinn novel, the sequel to Blood Oranges. As was likely obvious from my daily entries here, it didn't go well. In fact, it went badly. Very fucking badly. In fact, much to my agent's chagrin, I repeatedly, publicly, referred to the novel as "wretched." Which it is. But I finished it, sent it away to my editor, tried to forget the whole sordid mess, and get on with my whole sordid life. And it didn't work. I couldn't get on with anything. I could only hate that manuscript more with each day, and the thought of it being released into the world became intolerable. And, finally, I did what many would probably consider just a little bit unthinkable: I emailed my agent to request that she please contact my editor to tell her that I would be writing an entirely new Siobhan Quinn novel to take the place of Fay Grimmer. That was last Tuesday. The twenty-second. THis is the "very bizarre turn of events" to which I previously alluded.

Anyway.

No one panicked. No one yelled at me. I'd talked it all through with Kathryn to be sure we could handle this financially. My agent was extremely supportive. And my editor, though she says she's fond of Fay Grimmer, is willing to give me until the middle of March or so to turn in a new novel. Which was my proposition. Give me until the middle of March. So, it's settled. It's not that I don't care about all the time and work and stress required to produce Fay Grimmer; it's that I cannot stand the thought of the book being published. The sequel to Blood Oranges has to, by definition, be at least as good as its predecessor. The new novel will be titled Red Delicious, but I'm saying nothing about the story. Except that it's not about fucking fairies. I'm done with fairies. Except maybe for the occasional bit of short fiction.

So...yeah. That happened.

---

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Note that we only have a few copies of the trade paperback edition of the Alabaster short-story collection (2009).

---

Sunday morning, after weeks of existing in a state of numb, flatline depression relieved only by intoxication and brief spells of anger and manic nonsense, working all the while...after all that...Sunday morning I turned my head away from the keyboard, glanced at the bookshelves on the north wall of my office, and told Spooky we were going to Moonstone Beach. Which is what we did. Moonstone, and Harbor of Refuge, and Point Judith, and Narragansett Beach. We hadn't been down since Hurricane Sandy did so much damage to the southern shoreline of Rhode Island. We left the house and drove south, under a blazing white sun and a wide, carnivorous sky. The land was crusted with old snow. Wide white fields. Smothering blue sky. But we reached the sea. Blue above; grey-brown below. Sharp contrasted world. At Moonstone Beach, the storm sliced away the dunes protecting Trustom Pond, and the pond was breached. Which, of course, has completely altered the ecosystem in the wildlife refuge (which includes breeding areas for endangered plovers and terns). But this is what nature does. It tears up beaches, and ecosystems evolve. It's only a problem when humans get in the way...okay. Not going there just now.

Fuck. My head hurts. I have work to do. And I'm not up to a travelogue. We went to Moonstone. We saw a Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator), a new bird for both of us. The topography of the beach was entirely altered. We could see wrecked houses, very big, very old houses, to the east. I stood and stared at the freezing sea, and tried to let the crazy bleed out. Not much of it did. To the south, Block Island was startlingly clear against the horizon, girded by a shimmering mirage. Beautiful. Our faces went numb within ten or fifteen minutes. Then, as I said, we headed east, then back to Providence. Harbor of Refuge was hardly recognizable; parts of the jetty, massive granite blocks, are simply missing. Narragansett Beach was mostly erased when the storm surge topped the seawall.

Yesterday was spent mostly at the Atehnaeum (after brunch at the Classic Café), still trying still the noise in my head. There were flurries when we went in, wet and nasty. When we came out, near sunset, there was a heavy fall of large, fluffy snowflakes. Today, I'll post photos from Sunday, and tomorrow I'll post photos from Monday.

























All photographs Copyright © 2013 by Caitlín R. Kiernan and Kathryn A. Pollnac



Today, I go back to work on the script for Chapter Six of Alabaster: Boxcar Tales, which I have to finish by Friday, at the latest, so I can begin work on Red Delicious.

Hang On, Kittens,
Aunt Beast

Comments

( 40 comments — Have your say! )
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shanejayell
Jan. 29th, 2013 06:55 pm (UTC)
Planning to buy Blood Oranges as soon as I hit a bookstore. *lol* Assuming it actually has hit there. Will look, anyway.

Sorry to hear you felt the need to scrap it. Good luck with the 'new' book two!
greygirlbeast
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:01 pm (UTC)

Assuming it actually has hit there.

The release date is 2 February, book it will likely be in bookshops a few days earlier than that; hell, it may be there already.
sfmarty
Jan. 29th, 2013 06:58 pm (UTC)
Hanging on. I don't comment much, tho I am always here. I have rheumatoid arthritus and my hands hurt..a lot. As a reader I really appreciate your integrity. I have subsequent books by authors I like and have wondered what led them to release dreck. Money, I suppose, but erg.

I often go to the ocean and just sit and absorb.

Anyway, know that I have been an admirerer since the old GEnie days.

greygirlbeast
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:02 pm (UTC)

I have subsequent books by authors I like and have wondered what led them to release dreck.

Yep. Money.

Anyway, know that I have been an admirerer since the old GEnie days.

So long ago...
eluneth
Jan. 29th, 2013 06:59 pm (UTC)
I'm very, very sorry to hear about the upset surrounding Fay Grimmer. The whole affair sounds wrenching, but I wish you the best of luck with Red Delicious (which is a tantalizing title). (Relatedly, I just re-read "As Red as Red" in Haunted Legends, and enjoyed it just as much as the first time around. The cadence of the narrator's voice works wonders there, and so many of the images flicker with such strange menace. Of course, I've always been particularly unsettled by the idea of something staring in at me through a window...)

Thank you for sharing the photos, as always. I'm fascinated by the textures in http://www.caitlinrkiernan.com/012713-8.JPG
greygirlbeast
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:03 pm (UTC)

. (Relatedly, I just re-read "As Red as Red" in Haunted Legends, and enjoyed it just as much as the first time around. The cadence of the narrator's voice works wonders there, and so many of the images flicker with such strange menace. Of course, I've always been particularly unsettled by the idea of something staring in at me through a window...)

Thank you!
readingthedark
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:00 pm (UTC)
I'm relieved despite the madcap nature of your new deadline. I know how much that book didn't mean to you, if you know what I mean.
greygirlbeast
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:04 pm (UTC)

I know how much that book didn't mean to you, if you know what I mean.

I do.

And did you get Black Helicopters? You never replied?
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greygirlbeast
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:10 pm (UTC)

Good for you! It seems incredible to just scrap a book at this stage because it just isn't good, and then rewrite it.

I'm sure it's insane.
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purplefrog26
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:22 pm (UTC)
mmmm the changing coast lines and textures of winter beaches. Bleak, icy, and comforting all at once.

Good for you for pulling back what you aren't satisfied with.
greygirlbeast
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:22 pm (UTC)

Bleak, icy, and comforting all at once.

Yes.
alumiere
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:29 pm (UTC)
Gorgeous photos; they remind me of the beach (Long Island? somewhere in Jersey?) after Gloria. Well except for the snow. I remember we were at the beach when she hit, and went out before, during, and after the storm, and the light in your shots feels the same.
kakiphony
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:31 pm (UTC)
I love beaches in winter. I've been poking at the iced over waves of the bay here lately on evenings after work and it's always therapeutic for me. Although not as therapeutic as summer beaches and baking myself like a lizard.

I'm looking forward to Blood Oranges and hope Red Delicious treats you better than Faye Grimmer did -- if only because I'm fond of really long form stories which usually means multiple volumes. Selfishly, I've been looking forward to you tackling a series since I love your books so much.
handful_ofdust
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:38 pm (UTC)
You're the one who best knows what you need to do, always. And I've already pre-ordered my copy of Blood Oranges, so whatever comes next, I'm happy. I'm thinking of you.
solstice_lilac
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:39 pm (UTC)
It is good to know that you are not obliged to publish something you've decided you don't want released -- that no arbitrary deadline, or worse, financial need, will force you to do that.

A trip to the sea sounds great right now, even though the weather here is soaking wet, if not face-freezing cold. It might not make me forget how awful people are, either, but at least it would blow some of the angry away.
numisma
Jan. 29th, 2013 07:55 pm (UTC)
I got my preorder for Blood Oranges in, so it should arrive in my mailbox early Feb. I can hardly wait.

Best of luck on Red Delicious!
Terry Weyna
Jan. 29th, 2013 08:26 pm (UTC)
You are one of a declining number of authors whose work I buy sight unseen, topic unknown, just because it has your name on it. I'm sorry to hear that one of your books just didn't work for you, and really impressed with the integrity it takes to say, okay, not publishing this one. I can only imagine how hard a decision that must be after all the work and tsurris. Thank you.
sovay
Jan. 29th, 2013 08:30 pm (UTC)
The new novel will be titled Red Delicious, but I'm saying nothing about the story.

Let me know if there is any way in which I can be useful. I'm glad you got out of Fay Grimmer if it was causing you that much pain.

And I am very glad you had the sea.
Indrid Em
Jan. 29th, 2013 08:31 pm (UTC)
Good - I'm glad you took the hard road & scrapped the one you didn't like. Now the locked door til the new one is finished. Considering so much passion is driving you, I know it'll be incredible.
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