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Bring Back Rotary Dials

Sunny this morning, and no chance of rain today. But the weather has been oddly cool. Currently, it's 79˚F, with the heat index at 81˚F.

Yesterday was a black wall, or wave, or pit of depression and anger. Most of it I spent...well, who gives a shit? I don't. Today, I have a doctor's appointment at 3:30 p.m., so at least I'm not losing the day to the evil mood. I did leave the house yesterday. Just so I could say that I did.

I am aware that 1947 is asking too much. At this point, I would gladly settle for 1994.

Happy 98th birthday to Ray Bradbury, one of the last masters.

Yesterday, I watched a huge red paper wasp (Polistes carolina) crawling about on the masonry outside one of my office windows and thought of Peter Straub. Wasps always make me think of Ghost Story.

Last night, we finished The Roosevelts and began The West (1996).


10:30 a.m. (yesterday)

Bring Back Test Patterns

It's mostly cloudy and 81˚F, with the heat index at 85˚F.

I tried to write yesterday, but produced nothing I could use.

This was going to be the summer that I did not let a day go by without leaving the house. This morning, I woke from a nightmare to realize that I didn't leave the house yesterday.

Right now, the depression is a wall that I cannot see over, and I certainly lack whatever energy would be required the climb over it. I think it's taller and thicker than it was yesterday.

This morning, I finished Larry McMurtry's Comanche Moon.


10:32 a.m. (this morning)

Bring Back Dial Tones

A rainy morning, with a good downpour just about half an hour ago. Currently, it's 77˚F, with a heat index of 78˚F.

Today is H.P. Lovecraft's 128th birthday.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,115 on The Tindalos Asset.

And last night, we continued with the Roosevelt documentary.

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


10:37 a.m.

Bring Back Busy Signals

It was a little sunny a short while ago, but it's overcast now, as it was when I woke about 9 a.m. Currently, it's only 79˚F, with the heat index at 82˚F. There was rain in the night, I think.

Yesterday, I proofread the galleys for The Chartreuse Alphabet, which will the chapbook accompanying the limited edition of The Dinosaur Tourist.

At 5 p.m., we met Julie and Kurt (her husband) for dinner at Surin West, at Five Points. Surin used to be one of my favorite restaurants in Birmingham, and there are not many of those left. Almost none, in fact. And they've remodeled in such a way that I do not find it nearly so welcoming as when I last ate there in 2002. But the food is still very good, for Alabama Thai. After dinner, as twilight was turning to night, the four of us stopped in at Charlemagne Records, just two doors down from Surin and likely my favorite record store anywhere. It's been in the same place, up that steep, narrow flight of stairs since 1977, and I first visited it in 1978, when I was mere kiddo of fourteen. Anyway, it was a good three hours. And it was the first time I've eaten out since last August.

Later, back home, Spooky and I watched Victor Saville's Green Dolphin Street (1947), an old favorite of mine I'd not seen in a long, long time. And they we watched half of the third episode of Ken Burns' Roosevelt documentary.

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


6:41 p.m.

P.S. – The sun just came out again.


Clouds again this morning, though the sun was out for a time. Currently, it's only 78˚F, with the heat index at 80˚F. Yesterday, we ended up getting quite a lot of sun, though there was rain late in the day.

No work on Friday.

About 2 p.m., Spooky and I went to the Botanical Gardens, where we met up with Julie Daniels, an old friend of mine from Athens (and her husband) and someone I'd not seen in more than twenty-one years, not since I moved back to Birmingham in August 1997. We walked out to the pond in the Japanese gardens and watched the koi and turtles and talked for a couple of hours. In the end, I think we all got a bit too hot. Julie and I talked about, well, everything, but it's impossible to catch up on twenty-one years in two hours. But it was good, seeing her after so long. Too many people I care about have gone from my life. Everyone who remains is precious to me.

Back home, Spooky made dinner and we watched the first two episodes of Ken Burns documentary about Theodore Roosevelt and FDR (2014).

Today, I really do have to work.


3:31 p.m.
Currently, it's mostly cloudy and 80˚F, with the heat index at 84˚F.

Yesterday, nothing but a raging headache and anger and someone who has supposedly been an actual, real-world friend since 1994 "unfriending" me on Facebook* because I dared to condemn "Democratic" Socialism.

Every damned day, waking up angry, which leads to me being unable to work, wasted days.

There was a lot of aimless driving yesterday, just trying to get away from myself.

Last night, we watched the two-part Ken Burns documentary The Dust Bowl (2012).


5:38 p.m.

* Full disclosure: He's done it before.
Currently, it's 88˚F, with the heat index at 95˚F. But there are cooler, stormy days ahead, and I dread them.


From Facebook yesterday:

It is the fucking height of hypocrisy for Bernie Sanders to be talking about anyone demonizing Nancy Pelosi, after the lengths he went to in order to smear Hillary Clinton. But I've known Sanders is a hypocrite for years.


Yesterday was spent not writing. But we did move a bunch of boxes out to my mother's, because even after two months, the apartment is still a clutter of cardboard. I don't think I'm up to an entry today.

Last night, we made the mistake of watching Randal Kleiser's Big Top Pee-Wee (1988). I loved Pee-Wee's Big Adventure (1985), but I'd never seen the second film. Probably because at some point I heard how wretched it is. Anyway, afterwards I used The Maltese Falcon to get the taste out of my mind. It worked.


11:06 a.m. (this morning)


Currently, it's 92˚F, with the heat index at 98˚F.

Yesterday was not an easy day, by any measure. After all the not sleeping, I somehow managed to pull together the last bit of work on the galleys of The Very Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan and get Sirenia Digest 151 together and out to subscribers. And we got the corrected VBoCRK manuscript to the post office and off to Tachyon in San Francisco. But then the terrible smear set in again, the smothering sort of despair that's been at me. Spooky drove me around Birmingham for a bit, past some old haunts, including the old apartment on 16th Avenue South (1990-1994), but it only seemed to make things worse. At the root of it seems to be both the strange and unsightly ways that the city has changed and the way I have come home to a city where everyone I cared about has moved away or died.

And then we had dinner, and then Spooky broke a molar. After giving me all the olives.


We watched Don Siegel's The Shootist (1976), John Wayne's last film, with Jimmy Stewart, Lauren Bacall, Ron Howard, John Carradine, Scatman Crothers, and Harry Morgan. And then we went to bed, and once again I was unable to sleep. So I doubled my Gabapentin dose, which did the trick. I slept at least six hours. But the dose has likely left me useless today. Woozy as hell.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions.

I had Spooky take me to get a hot breakfast from Da Oink as soon as I was up and dressed, hangover food, and I also got today's photo, since I forgot to take one yesterday.


9:31 a.m. (this morning)

Sleeping Awake

At best, I got three or four hours sleep last night. So, two cups of coffee later, after finally getting up at 8 a.m., I'm trying to focus enough to get through the work I have to do today.

Currently, it's 87˚F, with a heat index of 89˚F.

Yesterday was, mostly, a lost day. Depression, a flat grey smear that followed the task of withdrawing a story from an anthology because the editor asked me to explain it, and I explained, instead, that over the past twenty-five years I've made a habit of not explaining my, admittedly, often ambiguous stories. That ambiguity and enigma, uncertainty and a lack of resolution are integral to my writing. And so on. And she was very nice about it, about me withdrawing the story instead of rewriting. But I'd really been pleased with be asked to contribute to this particular book, and sticking to my guns only lost me the sale. Sure, it was only .02¢/word, and that would have bought a few pizzas, but...fuck. Whatever.

There's this from my LJ, on this day one year ago, and, nothing's really changed, as regards this problem:

This thing on Wednesday, the reception at the Hay, is coming at me at me like a freight train, and I do not know what it would be appropriate to feel. But it's likely not the mixture of fear and confusion and anxiety that I feel. And the question that is playing in my head on an endless loop, "What the fuck am I supposed to do next?" At age 53, an Ivy League university has accepted my papers and there's to be a four-month exhibit. Whatever I was trying to prove, I've proven it as well as I ever will. And yes, I was trying to prove something to a lot of people who could see me only a a loser. Actually, it took so long a few of them died before I got this far, so fuck them. Regardless, if I am to continue, there has to be some new motivation, and it has to be greater than the need to keep the bills paid. Add to this the frustration that comes from getting this sort of recognition but still struggling just to keep those aforementioned bills paid. "We will celebrate your fascinating, culturally significant life and your work, Caitlín R. Kiernan, and we apologize if you wind up on the street with your rotten teeth because no one buys your books. Rest secure in the knowledge that all this junk of yours will be preserved for generations to come." Right, so, that's where I am today.

I went with Spooky to three grocery stores yesterday.

Last night, we finished Ken Burns' The War, and then we watched The Day of the Triffids (1962), which I hadn't seen in many years.


1:18 p.m.

Showplace of the South

It was hot yesterday, and it may be hotter today. Currently, it's 85˚F, with a heat index of 90˚F, and we're looking at a high of 92˚F. which means the heat index could easily reach 100˚F.

It was great seeing Gone With the Wind at the Alabama Theater yesterday, and it helped lift my spirits after those two wretched days. The show was sold out, 2,176 people; a few of them were even in Civil War-era costume, men in Confederate uniforms and women in Antebellum gowns.

Today, I have to get back to work.

Last night, Chinese takeout, and then we watched the sixth episode of Ken Burns' The War.

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


1:58 p.m.
Sunny today, and it looks as if it will be hot. Currently, it's 87˚F, with the heat index at 93˚F.

Yesterday is a lost day, swallowed by depression and anger and perplexity. No work, just white noise, pain from my damn feet and bad teeth, the blackness behind my eyes, regret, and so on, but we did get out and drove for a white, east and south as far as the eastern edge of Bessemer. You have to drive forever to escape the ugliness of the Sprawl. Strip mall after strip mall, a thousand fast food places, a thousand fucking big box stores, future squalor. Places I know from my youth as wilderness paved over. But we did get out beyond it all for a bit, and that helped. On the way back, we almost hit a fawn that started to cross the road in front of us.

Today, we're going to the Alabama Theater to see Gone With the Wind. Tomorrow, I go back to work. And I mean writing work, not bullshit proofreading work.

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

I shall leave you with a beautiful Nerine sarniensis that Spooky photograph yesterday.


12:37 p.m.

Entry No. 5,444

I hardly slept last night, and I'm not awake this morning. Currently, it's only 80˚F, with the heat index at 84˚F. This hardly counts as summer, and certainly not dog days.

Yesterday, we proofed "The Prayer of Ninety Cats," and then headed out to my mom's in Leeds to do a mountain of laundry, which took most of the night. We ate barbecue from Rusty's and watched the third episode of Ken Burns' The War. We got Jack's for breakfast on the way home this morning.

I'm in a low place. I don't know what might help.


9:56 a.m.

The Owl of Infinite Wisdom

Sunny this morning, but there are lurking clouds. It will be a cooler day. Currently, it's only 79˚F, with the heat index at 82˚F.

Yesterday, though we made a valiant effort, we did not finish the proofreading. We made it through four very long stories – "Bradbury Weather," "Andromeda Among the Stones," "Houses Under the Sea," and "The Maltese Unicorn." That only leaves "The Prayer of Ninety Cats," which we'll do this morning, and then I'll be finished. I mean to get myself into no more proofreading for as long as possible.

Last night, we had hot dogs and watched the second episode of Ken Burns' The War. There should have been RP, but there wasn't.

From my Facebook:

When my books are no longer being published as actual printed real-world, hard-copy paper-and-ink books, I will stop writing. Period. I hope it never comes to that, but the world is ever more fucked up. I think my stand here is not so different from Tarantino's stand on being done with directing when digital is the only option. Right there with you, man.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, because they're still making me pay rent. Thanks.

Also, a thank you to Julie, in far off Athens, for sending a new jigsaw puzzle, with art by her sister, Jill. The puzzle arrived day before yesterday, and now I just need time to do it.


9:09 p.m.
A sunny morning. Currently, it's 85˚F, with the heat index at 92˚F.

Yesterday sort of fell apart. We only proofed one story, "Galápagos." Today, though, I intend to make it through all five remaining stories, even if it means working into the night. I need this out of my way. There's writing to be done.

Last night, we had spaghetti and watched the last two episodes of Season 13 of Face/Off. And then we watched a remarkable film I'd never seen before, Spencer Tracy and Kathryn Hepburn in George Cukor's Keeper of the Flame (1943). It warns as strongly as any film ever could of the rise of someone like Donald Trump and of the divisive populist tactics used by Putin and others to destabilize American democracy so that fascism can take root. It needs to be seen. Also, it's a visually stunning film.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions.


4:46 p.m.

Of Pigs and Pearls

Yesterday was not quite as hot as was the day before, and the afternoon actually cooled down quite a bit, following a thunderstorm. Currently, it's 86˚F, with the heat index at 91˚F.

At best, I slept four hours last night,

We managed to proofread both "Hydrarguros" and "La Peau Verte." I'm increasingly worried and frustrated that I'm sinking all this time into proofing this collection, when I need to be writing something new. But, it is what it is.

I had the doctor at 3:30 p.m., and that went on until almost 6 p.m. We got burgers from Milo's for dinner and started watching Ken Burns' The War (2007), which I thought I'm seen, but actually had not. Later, we watched The Big Sleep (1946), another of my comfort films.

Sonya Taaffe has a new short story collection out, and you should have a look.

Also, please take a gander or two at the current eBay auctions. Thanks.

We need to finish the proofreading by tomorrow evening, so I can get back to writing. But we have six stories to go.


11:24 p.m.

Better Angels

I'm not awake, and it's already hot. Yesterday was hot, but today will likely be hotter. At 3 p.m. yesterday, we made it to 95˚F, with the heat index at 101˚F. And I'm not awake because I had trouble sleeping last night, and then there were bad dreams. Currently, it's 86˚F, with a heat index of 90˚F.

Nothing but proofreading yesterday, for The Very Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan. Well, actually I signed a small mountain of eBay books, and then Spooky took them to the post office. Then we read. We made it through "In View of Nothing," "A Season of Broken Dolls," and "The Ammonite Violin (Murder Ballad No. 4)." I have a doctor's appointment this afternoon, but we need to get through two stories before then.

Last night, we finished Ken Burns' Civil War documentary. It was somehow even sadder the second time around. And we watched Arsenic and Old Lace (1944) (because it's comforting), and I had some RP.

Please have a look at the eBay auctions. Thank you.


5:40 p.m.

3,719 days

...or 10 years, 2 months, 6 days. Or 89,256 hours. Or so on and et cetera.

I'll come back to that in a moment. Currently, it's sunny, and it's going to be another hot day. It was a hot day yesterday. Currently, 87˚F, with the heat index at 93˚F.

Yesterday, we continued proofreading the galleys for The Very Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan. We made it through "Interstate Love Song (Murder Ballad No. 8)," "Fairy Tale of Wood Street," and "One Tree Hill (The World As Cataclysm)." And then we went to Atlanta.

Except for a layover in 2010 at Hartsfield and a couple of Amtrak only-passings-through (2013 and 2014), we'd not not been back to Atlanta since the day we left to move to Providence, on May 31, 2008. Which explains all those calculations above. Yesterday, we went back to Little Five Points and the house at Mansfield Avenue and to the Kirkwood Lofts and Ponce De Leon Avenue NE. And it is eerie how little has changed. In the time since I left Birmingham in November 2002, it feels like everything has changed, and mostly not for the better. But in only a slightly shorter time, our old neighborhood in Atlanta has changed hardly at all, as if it had been preserved under glass for our eventual return. Or, actually, the feeling was more like we'd time traveled, and so we were really the only things that had aged. At L5P, just about everything is the same – Junkman's Daughter, Savage Pizza, L5P Pizza, Wax n' Facts, Criminal Records (though moved around the corner), the Vortex, Sevananda, Abbadabbas, Aurora Coffee, the L5P Package Store, the post office, Crystal Blue, Zesto, Psycho Sisters, the Variety Playhouse – and on and on and on. The chief difference seems to be that all the trees which were small in Freedom Park when we lived there have grown quite large, making it an even finer park.

First, we parked behind Junkman's and walked around L5P, and then we walked down Mansfield, past our old house at 1193. Then we drove through Candler Park, over to Kirkwood, past the lofts in the old school, where we lived from November 2002 to November 2004, when we moved to Mansfield because the lofts went condo. Then back around Freedom Park to Videodrome, which is not only still in business, but which seems hardly to have changed at all. We headed down Ponce as far as Whole Foods. We stopped at the Publix on Ponce that was once "our" grocery store. I was so glad to see the Claremont Hotel and the Majestic Diner and the Plaza Theater still going strong. I think maybe it's a wonder that neither of us actually cried. Were it not for the exorbitant rents we could never afford, I think we'd move back there in a year, when our lease here is up.

We left Atlanta sometime after 6 p.m. (CST, not EST) and headed home. There was a beautiful sunset. It was a fine little day out. It made me happy, even if the happiness was of a bittersweet sort. And to Byron and Jennifer L. and Jim, we'll see you guys next time, promise.

I should get to work. Please have a look at the current eBay auctions.


5:12 p.m.

"One evening, 1945..."

Sunny and bright today. Currently, it's 87˚F, with the heat index at 93˚F.

Yesterday, more proofreading for The Very Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan (Tachyon). We made it through "The Ape's Wife," "Tidal Forces," and "The Mermaid of the Concrete Ocean." I'm getting frustrated that the summer is slipping away, and I have so much that needs to be written, and I'm mired in this fucking proofreading. Once this is done, I vow never to put myself in a situation where I have to read any of these stories again for a long, long time.

I haven't finished The Tindalos Asset for Tor.com.

I have two Dancy stories (10k words each) to write for Subterranean Press.

I owe my Patreon folks an actual novel.

Spooky hung some pictures yesterday. I did a little more unpacking. Last night, after hot dogs, we watched more of Ken Burns' Civil War documentary.

When I was a kid, way back when, we were given three full months of summer vacation. We got out right before Memorial Day and went back right after Labor Day. June, July, and August were summer vacation. I pity kids today, who seem to get almost no summer at all. We're taking more time to teach them far less. (I did grades 1-12 between 1970 and 1982).


11:20 p.m.

Day After

Yesterday was a wicked, evil sort of a day, and most of it is best forgotten.

Not the least awful portion was spent suffering through Marc Forster's insufferable Christopher Robin, the worst film I've seen in a theater in at least a year. This film is truly terrible. Sort of fascinating to look at, but terrible all the same. It actually manages to make Winnie the Pooh creepy. It fails as a children's film, and it fails as an adult film, though I suspect it's trying to be both. To quote Alonso Duralde at The Wrap, Christopher Robin is a "...mid-life crisis movie aimed at kids, designed to shame parents who spend too much time at the office and not enough with their families." Yeah, pretty much. And it makes Winnie the Pooh creepy. Stay away. In droves.

I won't even get started on how they've fucked up the AMC theater at the Summit, where I last saw a movie at the end of 2002, before we moved from Birmingham to the Kirkwood Lofts in Atlanta.

Today is Selwyn's sixth gotcha day, so...you get another picture of Lydia.

Last night, hot dogs and more of Ken Burns' Civil War documentary.

From my Facebook: Want to know how to piss me off? Add me to a group with the insipid name of "Love Mankind."

Please have a look at the eBay auctions. Thanks.


8:38 p.m.

Favorite Songs of Dead Women

Today is the twenty-third anniversary of Elizabeth's suicide. She would have be, I think, forty-seven, which is a strange, sad thought, indeed.

The sun's back. It reappeared late yesterday. The weather is still a little cooler than is usual for August here. Currently, it's 83˚F, with the heat index at 87˚F.

Yesterday, we proofread the galleys of The Very Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan ("Fish Wife (1970," "A Child's Guide to the Hollow Hills," and "The Steam Dancer (1896)." I begin to think there's no way I'll make it through this thing before August 15th, so...I'll do as much as I can. We also started hanging pictures. There was also a trip to the Harris Building. I had some RP last night.

Recently, someone on Facebook told me that my posts here seem "out of touch." Truthfully, I took it as a compliment.

Yesterday, I finished Larry McMurty's Dead Man's Walk; this morning, I began reading his Comanche Moon.

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


9:19 a.m. (this morning)
Another gloomy, wet, freakishly cool day. Currently, it's only 76˚F.

There's really not much to say this morning, since I made an entry last night. I did at least sleep better last night than I had in a couple of days. Spooky made Dreamland chicken for dinner, and we watched the first two and a half episodes of Ken Burns' Civil War documentary. I watched it back in early 2016, but she's not seen it, and I felt like watching it a second time.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions.

From Facebook, day before yesterday: More and more, there are days when the very last thing on Earth I want to do is read anything that I've written.

And today's photograph is Lydia (with Selwyn), who says she ought to get two gotcha days.


9:36 a.m. (yesterday)
I was awake before seven a.m., but...I was in bed by 11:30 p.m. This whole getting up early thing is weird, after years of being so nocturnal, but it might not be a bad thing. Just weird.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,029 words on the noir and found THE END. I still don't have a title, which is one thing I have to do today. And proofread it. I sent it to Sonya yesterday afternoon, and she likes it. I hope the editor does. I also need to talk with Ted Naifeh today about an upcoming project and get serious about the proofreading for Tachyon. But I also need a break, after finishing that story. I want to go to Atlanta, and I want to go to Athens. There are things and places and people I need to see again.

I need a lot more energy than I have.

Here's a question I was asked on Facebook. I'll answer it here: I have a small question for you, if you wouldn’t mind. In VanderMeer’s Wonderbook, it says you perfect each paragraph and each scene. How do you do that without getting writer’s block? Do you have your plot already in mind?

Yes, that's how I've always worked. Like most every other writer, I get blocked at times. I've never felt like my process makes me any more susceptible to it than the process of any other writer. As for the plot, sometimes yes, but most times no. As many know, I'm not nearly as concerned with plot as I am with characterization and mood and language. Often, plot bores me. That said, I tend to allow it to unfold as I write a story. One event leads naturally to another. One scene is the consequence of all the scenes before it, not (usually) something I have worked out ahead of time.

And this reminds me of a quote I posted to Facebook a few days ago, one that I felt has a lot to say to readers who are confused by some of my books. Black Helicopters, for example. Maybe it will prove enlightening. Maybe not:

"The difference is that in the traditional detective novel there must be a solution, whereas in ours there is just the principle of investigation. Detective novels are consumer products, sold by millions, and are made in the following way: there are clues to an event, say a murder, and someone comes along and puts the the pieces together in order that truth may be revealed. Then it all makes sense. In our novels what is missing is 'sense.' There is a constant appeal to sense, but it remains unfulfilled, because the pieces keep moving and shifting and when 'sense' appears it is transitory. Therefore, what is important is not to discover the truth at the end of the investigation, but the process itself." ~ Alain Robbe-Grillet


We had a good walk at the Botanical Gardens yesterday, but a storm was brewing, and we had to cut it short. Still, we saw a swarm of baby toads, each small enough to fit on a dime, and the turtles and the koi and cavorting chipmunks. Afterwards, leaving Piggly Wiggly, we were caught in the downpour. It was a glorious rain.

Last night, we watched John Ford's magnificent The Searchers (1956), likely the greatest of all John Wayne's accomplishments and one of my favorite westerns.

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


(5:23 p.m.)
There was almost something autumnal in the air yesterday, the humidity was so low. Currently, it's 88˚F, with the heat index at 93˚F.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,051 words on the noir, which I need to finish today. After writing, we headed out to my mom's in Leeds to do a little laundry. And there was a trip to Wal-Mart. And just driving around looking at the green.

Lat night, there was Chinese takeout, and we finished Season Seven of Orange is the New Black. A really excellent thirteen episodes, it may be my favorite season so far. Also, I hereby nominate Storage Wars as the trashiest show on television, which must be saying a lot.

Please check out the current eBay auctions. Thank you.


4:33 p.m.
Currently, it's partly cloudy here and only 83˚F.

No writing yesterday. I wasn't well, and that was after not having slept. I puttered about all day, doing a little more unpacking, reading, listening to music, and so forth. It was a lost day, I suppose, but mostly I felt too lousy to care. Today, back to work on the noir, which I hope to have finished by tomorrow evening. And I have to jump into the proofreading for The Very Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan (Tachyon), if I'm to get it done, as the deadline is August 15th, which looms fucking large.


From my LiveJournal, on this day in 2008, shortly after our move to Providence:

"Here is the Future, as much as there is ever a 'future,' and it is bizarre and deadly, ugly and wondrous, and I have no place here."

The last ten years have only served to convince me I was correct.


Last night, after the third night of chili, we watched four or five more episodes of Season Six of Orange is the New Black. I read this morning that Season Seven has already been green lit, so that's good news.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions.

I took no photos yesterday, as I felt to bad to bother. So you get a photo of Lydia talking in her sleep, taken on Friday.


2:37 p.m. (Friday)

Entry No. 5,430

Currently, here in Birmingham, it's 89˚F, with the heat index at 89˚F.

Against all odds, yesterday was a good day. I fear, though, that today means to make up for it. I only managed to get about four hours sleep, which means my usefulness is limited. But yesterday I wrote 1,122 words on the noir story (which needs a title). And we had a good walk at the Botanical Gardens, from the conservatory out to the koi ponds in the Japanese gardens. We watched the first five episodes of the new season of Orange is the New Black.

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


5:18 p.m.

"...far away from the memories..."

Hot and sunny this morning. Currently, it's 85˚F, with the heat index at 88˚F.

Yesterday was the vilest, most wretched sort of day. I can only wish today will be much, much better.

Last night, I did some RP and we watched the tenth and final episode of Ken Burns' Vietnam documentary.


9:57 a.m. (this morning)
Currently, it's 89˚F, with the heat index at 89˚F.

Yesterday, I did 1,298 words on the noir story, but I'm stepping away from it today. I'm not certain about what I've done so far or what's to come.

Other than getting the writing done, yesterday was a spectacularly bad day for me. I will not elaborate.

From Facebook yesterday: I suspect I will never know a better curse than, "May you outlive your world." Finding myself in that situation, I can imagine nothing more terrible.

I began reading Larry McMurtry's Dead Man's Walk yesterday.

Last night, we watched the ninth episode of Ken Burns' Vietnam documentary.


6:17 p.m. (Tuesday)

Lydia in the Bug Room

Sunny again this morning, after mostly clouds yesterday, clouds until late in the afternoon. Currently, it's 85˚F, with the heat index at 89˚F.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,433 words on the noir story, as yet untitled. And I sent a story to Jerad Walters at Weird Fiction Review that I owed him.

We had a good walk late in the day, back to Jemison Park. We saw a heron and a luna moth. There was Dreamland for dinner, and then two more episodes of Ken Burns' Vietnam documentary.

This morning, I started Larry McMurtry's Dead Man's Walk.

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

Aunt Beast

12:51 a.m. (this morning)

Memories of Green

A bright day, and not hot. Currently, it's only 80˚F, with the heat index at 83˚F.

I didn't find my way into the story yesterday or even a title. I hope to have better luck today.

We took another load of boxes to the Harris Building. I spent a chunk of the afternoon moping about. And then we went to the Birmingham Botanical Gardens and walked among the trees and roses and what have you. There were turtles and koi in the Japanese Garden. It is a peaceful, beautiful place, and I expect we will visit it often. But I do miss the reflecting pool and fountain that once was located in front of the big conservatory building. Now it's just a patch of grass.

Last night, after Chinese takeout, we watched the sixth episode of Ken Burns' Vietnam documentary.

This morning, I finished Larry McMurtry's Streets of Laredo.

From Facebook this morning: I will only look back, to safer, saner, more civilized times, and while I know there are people who will be offended by my regressive ways, I am long past giving a shit. "These fragments I have shored against my ruins" and all that.

Please have look at the current eBay auctions. Thank you.


5:58 p.m.
Much cooler this morning, with clouds. Currently, it's only 79˚F, with the heat index at 81˚F.

Today, I need to begin a noir story (if noir can properly be said to constitute a genre; I think of it as I do horror, as...well, more like a mood) that has been promised to an editor. I think it's going to be science fiction, maybe one of my post-cyberpunk tales. I have so much work that needs doing NOW that it's going to be very hard to settle down and focus on writing, but that is what I do, after all. Right? Also, I have to get to work proofreading the ms. for the Tachyon book, The Very Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan, which is due out in November, and I have to proofread The Chartreuse Alphabet for Subterranean Press.

Yesterday, there was a quick trip out to Leeds, to the Bass Pro Shop. I'd hoped to find a new pair of shoes, which I badly need. The last time I bought shoes was, I think, early 2014. But, alas, all I came away with was a short and a pair of shorts. Last night, after dinner, I began the task pf unpacking my fossil collection, which mostly consists of vertebrates from the Mooreville Chalk of Alabama. The collection has been packed up and in storage since August 2001, before the first (disastrous) Atlanta move, which is just shy of unbelievable.

We had a very good walk late yesterday afternoon, through Jemison Park.

From Facebook this morning: For the record, pushy atheists are just as likely to piss me off as pushy Christians. "God bothering" is no worse than no-god bothering. It's all the same thing. Lots of folks make atheism their religion and are as evangelical as the loudest Pentecostal or Southern Baptist. I have been guilty of it myself in the past, and I deeply regret that.

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


1:33 p.m.

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