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Toady was a good day. A bit tedious and tiring, but a good day, all the same. Oh, and hot. The heat advisory continued. I'm a little unclear what our high was today, and the three-day feature at the National Weather Service is on the fritz. Spooky says she saw 94˚F, with a 103˚F heat index at some point. Currently, it's 93˚F. with a heat index of 100˚F, at twilight.

Me, I spent most of the day in the nigh-unto-freezing climate controlled environment in the collections department of the McWane Science Center, so I was shivering. Irony and all.

I was up at 7:30 a.m. and finished Barry Gifford's Perdita Durango, before going into the museum at 1 p.m.

I spent most of my time in the lab today staring at the glyptosaur osteoderms under the scope and taking measurements with digital calipers. The largest osteoderm in the bunch only measures about 7.85 mm long, with a greatest width of 5.8 mm, and a mere 2.51 mm thick. One of the others is only 1.15 mm thick. And I was terrified of crushing these brittle 47-41 million year old fossils between the steel jaws of the calibers. So, yeah, that part was nerve wracking. But now I have everything I need to finish the paper, I think. Also, good long talk with Jun Ebersole, about fossils yet to be found, and then I looked over a Cretaceous alligator gar (cf. Atractosteus sp.) that I helped to collect in the summer of 1981, when I was only seventeen. It will be the subject of my next paper, if I actually ever get the glyptosaur paper finished. And that was my day.

I came home at 5 p.m. and had Spooky's delicious pasta salad, after a brief nap and an episode of Mythbusters.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. You know you wanna.

Today, you get two photos! Two, for the same price (FREE!) as the usual one, so EXTRA FREE! What a bargain for you!

Later Gar Gators.

2:51 p.m. ("What I did during summer vacation.")

4:36 p.m. (Because I have an ironwork fetish, and this came to Birmingham from Neenah, WI.)

Imagine a world without subject lines.

Blazing hot today. We had a heat advisory. The high was 96˚F, but the heat index reached 103˚F. Currently, it's still 85˚F, with the heat index at 90˚F, and we have another heat advisory for tomorrow.

I don't really have anything much to say about today.

Except, if you're an admirer of Stephen King's Pet Sematary (1986), or at least a fan of the 1989 Mary Lambert film adaptation, do yourself a favor and avoid the new Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer version. It's an aggressively stupid film, with no respect whatsoever for the source material. It's all jump scares and shitty acting and inexplicable directorial decisions. Stay away.

Oh, I almost forgot. Library Journal gave Houses Under the Sea: Mythos Tales a starred review.


1:38 p.m.

Howard Hughes and the Cicada Mafia

We made it to 94˚F today, which doesn't sound so hot, until you factor in the 102˚F heat index.

Today, I worked on the "Stratigraphic Background" section of the glyptosaur paper. There will be more of that tomorrow.

In the time since I finished The Tindalos Asset back in April, I've written four short stories and two novellas:

1. "The Last Thing You Should Do"
2. "The Tameness of Wolves"
3. "Dreams of a Poor Wayfaring Stranger"
4. "Requiem"
5. "Untitled 44"
6. "The Surgeon's Photograph (Murder Ballad No. 11)"

Not too shabby.

Not enough sleep last night. Five hours, at best. Oh, and I started Barry Gifford's Perdita Durango today. And I talked with my lit agent and with Jerad at Centipede Press. Yes, there are still plans for a limited of The Red Tree. Eventually.


12:15 p.m.
The day started out bright and hot, then a thunderstorm blew in about 1:30 this afternoon, and my office was suddenly dark as twilight. And then the wind hit, blowing leaves from the trees. And then the rain. We dropped about ten degrees ˚F in just a few minutes, I think. Currently, it's only 74˚F.

Today, I wrote 1,555 words and finished the story that is now known as "The Surgeon's Photograph (Murder Ballad 11)." I'll definitely keep the subtitle, because this is one of the murder ballads, even if I should wind up reverting back to the original title. Anyway, I was so pleased to have found THE END that I decided to give myself the afternoon off from the glyptosaur paper. I'll go back to it all day tomorrow and Tuesday. Then I have McWane Wednesday and Thursday.

On Friday, I'll put together Sirenia Digest #162 and get it out to subscribers.

So, the week is full.

Oh, and I've gone back to Second Life. Every time this happens, I'm surprised. But I need the RP.

Also, I signed a whole bunch of eBay books tonight, so Spooky can get them to the post office tomorrow. If your book's late, that's my fault, not hers, and I apologize.


7:37 p.m.

Ouroboros to Nowhere

Very hot again today, but at least the humidity was lower. Our high was 96˚F and the heat index made it to 99˚F. Currently, it's 82˚F, with the heat index at 87˚F.

Today, I did another 1,243 words on "The End of All Flesh is Before Me." Which might be getting a new title, but I'm not sure yet. And then I spent another two hours on the glyptosaur paper.

Tonight, we watched David Robert Mitchell's third film, Under the Silver Lake (2019). Rarely have I been left so turned about and frustrated by a film, and I do not mean in a good way. I loved It Follows (2014), one of the smartest thrillers of the past twenty years, but Under the Silver Lake is all ambition and vision without the necessary discipline to even craft a coherent enigma. Everything It Follows got right, Under the Silver Lake manages to get wrong. I keep wanting to draw a parallel between the brilliance of Richard Kelly's Donnie Darko (2001) and the great calamity of his Southland Tales (2006). It's like that. You can't put every cool idea you've ever had into a single film. Which is not to say there aren't some really wonderful bits to Under the Silver Lake, it's just that the whole doesn't measure up to the parts that make the sum. And it's beautifully filmed and just as beautifully scored. But it's a goddamn mess, and there's no denying that.

And that's enough for now.


6:15 p.m.

It Came from the Eighties

Hot today. I don't know just how hot. I saw the heat index at 98˚F late in the afternoon. No rain.

Spooky made a trip to the storage unit, and it was 90˚F on the floor where all our shit's stored.

And I wrote. I did 1,230 words on the new story for Sirenia Digest #162, "The End of All Flesh is Before Me." And then I went back to work on the glyptosaur paper, which I'm sort of pulling apart and putting back together. Better.

This afternoon, I watched a documentary about Petra on the National Geographic Channel, and then we watched the last three episodes of the third season of Stranger Things, and I almost cried at the end.

And that was today.


6:01 p.m.

Tales from the Mall

We didn't go to see the fireworks at Vulcan tonight. But the mountainside boomed and shook with the sound of them. Currently, it's 84˚F, with the heat index at 90˚F. No rain today, I don't think. There were fine tall clouds at sunset, and I spotted Mars.

My grandfather, Gordon Jasper Monroe Ramey, was born on this day in 1911. So, he'd have turned 108 today.

I wrote another 1,250 words and found THE END to "Untitled 44." It will be appearing in Sirenia Digest 162 (July). Tomorrow, I begin the story for Sirenia Digest 163, trying to stay ahead, the same way I did with nos. 160 and 161. Doing that allowed me to set aside a big chunk of time to write the two Dancy novellas in May and June. Doing it now will allow me to go back to work on the next novel, Interstate Love Song (finally).

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Thanks.

Anyway, no, we didn't go to the fireworks tonight. Neither of us were up to the crowds and traffic, and we did go last year. But Spooky made barbecue chicken and potatoes in the slow cooker, in Dreamland sauce, with corn. And there was leftover anniversary cheesecake. And now we're watching Season Three of Stranger Things. So, it's a fine Fourth.

Later Taters,

8:53 p.m.

And now we are seventeen.

Muggy and warm tonight. Mostly cloudy today, with some sun, then some rain. Currently, it's 78˚F, with the heat index at 80˚F.

And today is mine and Kathryn's seventeenth anniversary.

I felt quite a bit better today.

I did 1,207 words on "Untitled 44." Then I did typed in line edits on the manuscript of a book I'm doing with Borderlands Press, A Little Yellow Book of Fever Dreams. I actually proofread the manuscript last March, March 2018, and then I lost track of it and...never mind. This afternoon, I finally sent the final version to Tom Monteleone.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Until shit is free, natch. Or Netflix gets off their butts and makes that Dancy series.

Last night and tonight, we've been watching Season Two of Stranger Things again, because Season 3 goes up tomorrow. Which is how we will be spending Independence Day. I'm gonna write. Then we're gonna have barbecue chicken and taters and binge watch Season 3.

Happy 4th of July, by the way. Happy birthday, Grandpa Ramey.


1:47 p.m.
Currently, it's 82˚F, with a heat index of 85˚F. But our high to day was about 95˚F, so our heat index must have been near 100˚F.

Today was not a lost day, though I'm not well and was only able to wring about two productive hours from the day. I did about 500 words on something that's, for now, called "Untitled 44."

Last night, we watched the series finale of Twin Peaks and then a mostly well-done little horror film, Akiva Goldsman's Stephanie (2017).

I left the house long enough today to take a photograph. I started reading Barry Gifford's Wild at Heart, because Spooky gave me the collected Sailor and Lula novels. I lay on the floor and watched documentaries and Mythbusters. Spooky made spaghetti for dinner.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Thanks.


3:30 p.m.


1:21 p.m.


Really not a good day, after not such a great night. Currently, it's 80˚F, with the heat index at 83˚F.

Tonight, we watched Fire Walk With Me (1992) and the new episode of Big Little Lies.

And there are eBay auctions, which I should plug, regardless.


1:18 a.m.

"Driving Buicks to the Moon."

Another good night's sleep, three in a row. It was sunny again early, cloudy again late, but no storms today. Currently, it's 78˚F, and the cicadas are loud in the trees.

I spent the day, mostly, with the glyptosaur paper, puzzling the ins and outs of Eocene biostratigraphy in Alabama and Mississippi. Forams and ostracodes and phytoplankton, oh my.

Okay, sorry. I had to do that, because we're watching Wild at Heart (1990) tonight. I cannot believe that movie's about to turn thirty next year. I saw it the first time the summer it was released, with Jada and Elizabeth, somewhere here in Birmingham.

Oh, and I'll blame the pimento cheese sandwiches, too.

The mail brought more signature pages for the Centipede Press edition of The Haunting of Hill House (I wrote the afterword, or introduction).

Yesterday was the one-year anniversary of Harlan Ellison's death, but I just wasn't up to mentioning it. Today would have been Ray Harryhausen's 99th birthday.

For my part, I still need heroes, and I expect I always will, no matter how many times I find myself the hero in my "own story." Without heroes, I am lost.

“As you get older it is harder to have heroes, but it is sort of necessary.” ~ Ernest Hemingway*

Later Taters,

7:00 p.m.

*Another of my heroes, by the way.
So, two nights in a row, good sleep, more than seven hours both nights. And today I felt much, much better and became functional again.

And it rained, after a sunny morning and early afternoon.

And I spent another three and a half hours on the glyptosaur paper. I have two more days before I need to focus on fiction again.

Oh, and we went to the new Publix Greenwise market where the Western in Mountain Brook used to be, and, hence, tonight's photo of fresh Chilton County peaches, which are now back in season (woo hoo).

Tonight, we're re-watching all of Season Ten of Archer thus far and the pilot episode of Twin Peaks. Last night, we watched Alex Garland's Annihilation (2018) and Claire Denis' High Life (2018). About the latter, I'll say it was very good, but desperately needed a bigger budget and better production values. About the former...well, the bear scene, no one is ever going to top that fucking creepy fucking bear for pure fucking creepy.

It has now been more than a month since I looked at any news source. I've heard virtually nothing of whatever is or isn't going on out there since sometime in May. And I'm just a little bit saner for it. Ignorance may actually be bliss.

Also, my thanks to everyone who sent Spooky a birthday gift. Ya'll rock (Spooky never says y'all).

Now, I'm gonna go eat some Key lime pie. You should look at the current eBay auctions. Well, auction. Yes, you should.

Later Taters,

6:55 p.m.


9:53 p.m.

"Are you the one who found the ear?"

Last night was another night with hardly enough sleep to bother mentioning, so I missed another day at McWane.

There were storms near sunset.

I finished David Lynch and Kristene McKenna's Room to Dream this afternoon, so tonight we watched Blue Velvet for the first time in a couple of years.

Spooky made tuna sandwiches and fries for dinner.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Thanks.


10:47 p.m.

Zombies and Zomdon'ts

Sunny and hot today. The cicadas are singing tonight. Currently, it's 78˚F, with the heat index at 81˚F.

I slept a solid six and a half hours last night. It was wonderful.

Today, we saw Jim Jarmusch's The Dead Don't Die (my birthday present to Spooky), and, truthfully, I was very worried we weren't going to enjoy it. There's been so much naysaying and kvetching and disdain, I was afraid maybe this wouldn't be one of the good Jarmusch films. But I knew before the film's first scene was over this was not the case. We both loved it and found it very, very funny, but if you're not into Jarmusch's ultra-deadpan brand of comedy or a zombie film this unrelentingly wacky or into metafictional elements or...whatever...it might not be your cup of tea. But as far as I'm concerned, Tilda Swinton's performance alone is worth the price of admission.

Tomorrow, I have a long day at McWane, and I need to spend the rest of the week of the glyptosaur paper, and then it's back to fiction on Monday.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctuons. Thank you.


2:45 p.m.
Very, very tired, because last night was Night Number Whatever Without Sleep. My head hurts, and even the cicadas aren't much of a comfort. Currently, it's 81˚F, with the heat index at 83˚F.

I went into the lab this morning, but only got in about three hours of prep time, because I was just too sleepy to be at my best or trust my judgment. Spooky came and picked me up a little after 1 p.m., though I'd hoped to stay until closer to 5. Blah, blah, blah. I came home and couldn't actually nap, but couldn't do much of anything else, either. Anyway, I get another shot on Wednesday.

No, you can't die of insomnia.

Maybe I already died.

Anyway...today was Spooky's birthday, and she got cupcakes and worked on her puppets, and there were marvelous gifts from wonderful people, and we got Chinese takeout and watched Industrial Accident: The Untold Story of Wax Trax! Records (2018).

Oh, and I have a headache. Wait, I said that already.

Anyway, please have a look at our current eBay auctions, most especially that copy of Tales from the Woeful Platypus (2006). Gonna be a long time before you see another one of those from us.

Probably I'm forgetting something, but it can wait.


1:02 p.m.

A June of Sleepless Nights

Sunny today, mostly. Tonight, the cicadas are loud, and it's one of the best sounds I know. Currently, it's 84˚F, with the heat index at 89˚F.

Another sleepless night last night. Maybe three hours, when all was said and done, but three broken up hours. At least, though, the black mood lost its grip on me somewhere in there. So, it was a better day, even without sleep.

Still, I spent the morning and early afternoon trying to make some progress on the glyptosaur paper. I wanted to have a first draft by June 30, because I go back to fiction on July 1. Now, I'm not sure I'll be able to get the paper done that soon, thanks to the sleeplessness.

Regardless, tomorrow is a McWane day, sleep or no sleep. I need to get back to the tylosaur. Tomorrow, is, of course, also Spooky's birthday.

There are three mostly grown kittens living with their mother in a cave in the little cliff behind the house.

And that was today, more or less. Oh, except that I had a really good baloney sandwich for dinner, and then signed a whole mess of eBay books for people.

Speaking of which, Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. They include a copy of Tales from the Woeful Platypus (2006), truly one of my harder to find books.

Later Taters,

2:00 p.m.

Mandatory Title

The day started out bright and sunny and hot, and then the storms came. It would be poetic to say that they brought this black mood, that it has returned, with them. But they didn't. I woke with it. And I lost the day to it, and I desperately hope it will be gone tomorrow.

Selwyn hates thunder.

And there was a lot of thunder.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Thanks.


11:46 a.m.

"Plant one and watch something die."

A hot, hot day. I'm not sure what the actual high was, but I know the heat index made 102˚F at one point. Currently, it's 85˚F, with the heat index at 91˚F.

Today, I worked on the glyptosaurine paper, mostly studying the six osteoderms we have and reading or re-reading relevant papers, such as Chris Beard's 2008 "The oldest North American primate and mammalian biogeography during the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum" and Robert Sullivan's 1979 revision of Glyptosaurus. And I played GW2, which I started playing again a couple of days ago, after a three-week break. And I watched Mythbusters and a documentary about the exploration of Mars.

Tuna sandwiches and fries for dinner.

Tonight, we watched Mad Max: Fury Road for the fourth time (counting the two times in the theater). Last night, we watched a documentary about Alexander McQueen.

Spooky's making the creepiest puppet....

Oh, but first, please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Good stuff, which I will sign and personalize. And it's still not too late to have a look at Spooky's birthday wishlist. Just click the link. Thank ye.

My Amazon.com Wish List

Later Gators,

5:13 p.m.

"A double-fisted queen of terror."

It's a beautiful evening here in Birmingham, sunset turning the tops of the clouds pink and violet. Currently, it's 86˚F, with the heat index at 89˚F.

Today was supposed to be a McWane day. I had ambitions of finishing with the coronoid and the splenial both today, finishing the mechanical prep work and the acid bath and so forth. But then I didn't sleep last night. At best, I slept two and a half hours, and those were broken up and piecemeal. And the last thing I was gonna try to do on two and a half hours of sleep was handle incredibly delicate 85 million year old bones (and dental tools and dangerous chemicals). So, I finally got up about, I don't know, 8 a.m., and I called the lab and let Jun know that I would not be coming in, thank you Monsieur Insomnia, you motherfucker. I'll give it another try on Monday.

By the way, no, I'm not being paid for my work at McWane. Someone asked. This is science for the sake of and love of science. My sole source of income remains my fiction writing.

The day was a blur, a far less than awake blur. We went to an Asian market out on Valley Road, which actually was called Super Oriental Market, and there were all sorts marvelously weird noodles and candy and porcelain maneki-neko figurines. Spooky got some green tea flavored Kit Kat bars, but that was all. They're actually green. Then we had to stop at the market for peanut butter and mouthwash and Gatorade and whatnot. It's a goddamn glamorous life, I tell you what.

Oh, yesterday, I helped Spooky move the last few boxes from our small storage unit into our large storage unit (long story), so that we can save about $60/month. There a lot of economizing going in around here.

A special thank you to the very, very generous Bill Schafer, who time and again has come along to pull my butt from out the fire.

“I used to be somebody, now I’m somebody else” ~ Bad Blake, Crazy Heart (I ought to have this tattooed on my other arm.)

Today, I went back to David Lynch's autobiography, Room to Dream, which I'd set aside while I finished "Requiem."

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Good stuff, which I will sign and personalize. Also, it's still not too late to have a look at Spooky's birthday wishlist. One day, I will not be fucking broke on her birthday and I'll get her that goddamn Meezer ranch she's been wanting:

My Amazon.com Wish List

Later Kittens,

9:01 a.m.

Savannah to Birmingham

Rain this morning, then a little sun, then rain again this evening. Currently, it's 74˚F.

Today, I spent four hours proofreading the new new Dancy story, then dealing with a hundred or so line edits. Now, it's done. And the title is now simply "Requiem." Both stories have been sent to Subterranean Press, and I'll post more information here about the new Dancy collection as soon as I am able.

And then I worked on the glyptosaur paper a little, outlining sections on the three localities that produced the specimens being described – Little Stave Creek in Clarke County, Alabama, Hatchetigbee Bluff in Washington County, Alabama, and the Red Hot Truck Stop site in Lauderdale County, Mississippi.

Tonight, after tuna casserole, we watched Lynne Ramsay's extraordinary You Were Never Really Here (2017), and if you haven't, you should.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions (because shit ain't free), and there's also Spooky's birthday on the 24th, so here's her wishlist at Amazon:

My Amazon.com Wish List

Later Taters,

11:29 p.m.

Howard Hughes and the Cretaceous Taco

I hear thunder. The day was hot and sunny, but not unpleasantly so. Currently, it's 83˚F, with the heat index at 86˚F.

I spent most of the day a McWane, prepping the Tylosaurus splenial, which came free of the block with more ease than I'd feared it would. But it was tedious, painstaking work on a very fragile bone, and I was only good for about four hours of preparation. I won't get another day at McWane until Thursday.

Back home, I read "Paleoecology and Biostratigraphy of Marginal Marine Gulf Coast Eocene Vertebrate Localities" by Jim Westgate (2001). And napped. And then watched a couple of episodes of Mythbusters. And then we got sweet tea and bananas from Da Oink and dinner from Milo's.

Tonight, we watched John Carpenter's Big Trouble in Little China (1986), which neither Kathryn nor I had seen since the 80s. I contend it's one of four truly good Carpenter films. They are, in order of release:

1. Escape from New York (1981)
2. The Thing (1982)
3. Starman (1984)
4. Big Trouble in Little China (1986).

Last night, we saw Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven (1992), even though we saw it not long ago, and then Rupert Wyatt's understated Captive State., which I now see no one seems to have enjoyed but me.

And as I said last night, please have a look at the current eBay auctions, and there's also Spooky's birthday on the 24th, so here's her wishlist at Amazon:

My Amazon.com Wish List

I doubt the universe will reward you for these small acts of kindness, but it can't hurt, right? Until next time, I leave you with RMM 070, the "Greene County Mosasaur" that once graced Red Mountain Museum, which was being reconstructed and mounted when I began doing volunteer work there in 1978. We go back a long, long way, this lizard and I.


2:05 p.m.
Sunny today, mostly, and we made it back above 90˚F. Currently, it's 89˚F.

Today, I wrote 1,643 words and finished my second long Dancy Flammarion story in less than a month*, and this despite sleeping less than five hours last night. This second story weighs in at 10,450 words and the first, "Dreams of a Poor Wayfaring Stranger," at 10,421 words (so a combined total of 20,871 words). I think the new title for the second story is, by the way, "Requiem for a Scapegoat." At least that's what is it this afternoon. I grew to hate "The Lady in the House of Crowning Glory," and I've been trying to find the new title for a week or so. And this really is a requiem. Both stories are for the forthcoming second volume of Dancy stories from Subterranean Press (though the trade edition will only include one of them), which also does not yet have a title, and I have no idea when it will be released.

Oh, and I spent an hour later in the day, after a half-assed nap, working on the glyptosaur paper.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, and there's also Spooky's birthday on the 24th, so here's her wishlist at Amazon:

My Amazon.com Wish List

I'm supposed to be back at the McWane Center tomorrow, if I can get some sleep tonight, then spend Tuesday editing the new new Dancy story.


9:12 a.m.

* By Hugo, Nebula, and World Fantasy criteria, these count as "novelettes." But I do not use that odious word.
I slept more than seven hours last night. I've been lucky to get five most nights.

Sunny and warmer today, but the thunderstorms are coming. Spooky saw lightning bugs and says she heard a cicada, but I haven't done either.

Today, I did a remarkable (for me, I'm saying) 2,141 words on the new new Dancy story (new title TBA tomorrow night). I'll easily finish the story tomorrow. And I started writing the glyptosaur paper, which I think is going to be called "Eocene glyptosaur (Reptilia: Anguidae) osteoderms from Alabama and Mississippi, USA."

A very good day at McWane yesterday. I came close to finishing with the left coronoid of "Alfred" the giant tylosaur, but it still needs a mild acid bath (a 5% CH3COOH/95% H2O solution, which is pretty much white vinegar) and then a good coat of polyvinyl butyral resin ("Butvar B-98") as a preservative. I've spent about nine hours on the coronoid so far, and even though it isn't quite done, I moved on ahead to the left splenial, which is gonna make that coronoid look like a walk in the park.

Tonight, we watched Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck's Captain Marvel (2019), and I really loved it. Last night, we saw Kieran Darcy-Smith's The Duel (2016).

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, plus there's Spooky's upcoming birthday, so there's her Amazon wishlist.

My Amazon.com Wish List


9:55 p.m.
Today was a very, very good day. Even the weather was nice. I think we might have gone to the mid eighties, but it may have been cooler, and currently it's 65˚F. Warmer weather is on it's way back.

The day started with an email from Bill Schafer informing me that the forthcoming Subterranean Press edition of Houses Under the Sea: Mythos Tales has received a starred review in Publisher's Weekly*, which reads as follows:

Houses Under the Sea Subterranean, $45 (488p) ISBN 978-1-59606-920-6

"The thirty stories in this superior collection are remarkable for showing how harmoniously Kiernan’s own visionary weird fiction resonates with the best cosmic horror tales of H.P. Lovecraft. Some selections, such as “Pickman’s Other Model (1929),” are ingenious extensions of well-known Lovecraft works. Others, including “From Cabinet 34, Drawer 6” and “The Drowned Geologist (1898),” riff on the cosmic conspiracies rampant in Lovecraft’s mythos fiction. In a clutch of tales that includes “So Runs the World Away” and “Love Is Forbidden, We Croak & Howl,” Kiernan goes full gothic, elaborating a dark fantasy world populated by ghouls, vampires, and other eldritch beings. No matter how strange or outré the phenomena, Kiernan meticulously builds details into her stories that ground them in a believable reality, such as the paleontological data that evokes vast expanses of time in “A Mountain Walked” and the scientifically credible rendering of an extraterrestrial colony in the book’s one new story, “M Is for Mars.” This is a must-have for fans of Kiernan’s work or the Cthulhu Mythos." Agent: Merrilee Heifetz, Writers House. (Oct.)


I got to the McWane Center about 9:45 a.m. and spent the next five hours preparing the back half of the left lower jaw of an enormous specimen of the giant mosasaur Tylosaurus proriger. The entire skull would have been about five feet long, and the section of the jaw I worked on today was about two and a half feet of that. This mosasaur was originally discovered by Red Mountain Museum and Explorer Post 272 in March 1981, then excavated (I think) in the summer of 1983. The one section of jaw is the only part that has yet to be prepared. I figure I'll take me a couple of weeks to finish.I'll write more about working on his specimen very soon, with photos and everything. I'm just too tired tonight. More McWane tomorrow.

The third good thing was Spooky finding my grandmother's revolver, which we feared had somehow been lost in the move last year. No. It was hiding in the top of a closet.

Anyway, back home, there was Chinese takeout of dinner, and then we watched the new episode of Archer and then Sam Raimi's underrated The Quick and the Dead (1995). I would so love to see this film remade with Charlize Theron in the Sharon Stone role, by the way.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. We've got some good stuff up and more good stuff on the way. Thanks.

Also, Spooky's birthday still has not been moved from June 24th, despite appeals to the Homeland Office of Birth Date Relocation, and you can find her Amazon wish list by following the button below.

My Amazon.com Wish List

And finally, the ghost of Woody Woodpecker's ten thousand times great grandfather says, "Relax."**

Later Taters,

3:47 p.m.

* Publisher's Weekly didn't review the Centipede Press edition.
** First person who tells me how pterosaurs ain't birds gets a sock in the mush.

Caold Snap

As in, we're having one. Well, okay, not cold. But I don't think we even made it to 80˚F toady, or if we did, not much past. Currently, it's 75˚F, and we're going down to 61˚F. Tomorrow, night, the low is supposed to be 58˚F.

Today, I did 1,324 words on the second new Dancy story (title in flux). I don't think I have much more than two days work to go on it, and that will finish up the stories for the forthcoming second Dancy Flammarion collection (title and release date TBA, so don't ask). And I emailed Bill and Yanni at SubPress. And I spent some time sorting through some of my personal fossil collection, much of which I'm donating to McWane, mostly stuff I collected between 1998 and 2002. Oh, and Spooky braved traffic on 280 to get me a new external HD, which I need for paleo'/museum stuff.

All in all, Spooky had a really crappy day, but that's not for me to elaborate upon.

Tonight, new episodes of Pose and Deadliest Catch.

And before I forget (again), Spooky's birthday is coming up fast (24th of June), and here's the button thingy for her Amazon wish list, should anyone be so inclined. Thank you. Oh, and here's the eBay link, too.

My Amazon.com Wish List

And tomorrow is a McWane day.


1:02 a.m.

"You just don't remember it yet."

No rain today, and only a few clouds, but the weather stayed cool. Currently, it's only 68˚F.

A much better day today, despite sleeping less than five hours. I wrote 1,430 words on this new story, and for the first time on this one I felt like I pulled away from mediocrity. It may turn out well, after all. This story is, by the way, a very odd sort of "sequel" to "Les Fleurs Empoisonnées," set in Birmingham in 2018, twenty years after the events of that story (Dancy would be about thirty-five). There was email with Bill Schafer and Jun Ebersole.

Meanwhile, Spooky spent the morning transferring the contents of our storage unit to a larger unit in the same building, just across the aisle.

And the black mood stayed at bay. It helps that Thursday is a McWane day. Anyway, after the writing, I did some paleo' work and watched documentaries on volcanoes and earthquakes.

Tonight, we watched the Miley Cyrus episode of Black Mirror, "Rachel, Jack, and Ashley, Too," which I must admit was pretty damn delightful, and then we watched Bertrand Tavernier's In the Electric Mists (2009), based on James Lee Burke's In the Electric Mist with Confederate Dead (1993).

Please have a look at the current eBay links. Thank ye.

Later Taters,

10:52 a.m.

Somewhat Slightly Less Wretched

I think the rain is done with us again for a while. Currently, it's 76˚F.

Today I did another 1,141 words on "The Lady in the House of Crowning Glory." Only I'm beginning to think I may change the title to "Requiem for a Dragon Slayer, Requiem for a Cannibal." Or shit, I don't know. Anyway, once again the words came only with great effort and haltingly and likely amount only to more mediocrity. I fear this one just doesn't have anything better in it, no matter how hard I beat the darkness. It certainly won't be for lack of effort. I hope to finish the story by Sunday evening.

The black mood lifted about 11:30 p.m. last night, after I'd gone to bed, and then I was awake until after 2 a.m. It was still gone when I woke, and we got breakfast at Jack's (which we haven't done in months), and when I set down to write, the black mood swept down again. Or rose up. Or what the fuck ever it is that black moods do. Oozed from out my eye sockets. When the writing was done, about two this afternoon, I tried to do a little more work on other things that need my attention, but I ended up laying down and sleeping an hour or so. After the nap, my mood had lightened a little again.

Late this afternoon, early this evening, three documentaries – one on the collision of galaxies and two on asteroid/meteor/cometary impacts. After dinner, we watched Vincent D'Onofrio's very good The Kid (2018). Lately, about all I want to watch are westerns. And war movies. But mostly westerns. Make of that what e'er you will.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Even when I feel like shit, shit still ain't free. Go fucking figure.

6:09 p.m.

The Worse Day of 2019 (Thus Far)

Blue skies and clouds most of the day, but a thunderstorm this evening. Currently, it's 73˚F.

Today, I did another 1,347 words on "The Lady in the House of Crowning Glory." But today's pages seem every bit as much mediocrity as yesterday's.

A wicked, black shitstorm inside my head today. The three hours I spent writing was the only calm. I don't know how much longer this is going to keep up. I had a couple day's respite from the anger and frustration, but then it came roaring back.

Today, documentaries on the Parker Solar Probe and free climbing El Capitan.

I just fucking want to fast forward a week or two...


12:11 a.m.

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