In Which Our Heroine Reads and Works and Sometimes Likes It

7 April 2004

Okay, it's official: Computers and Magic panel, me, my very first panel, MiniCon, Friday afternoon. I'm thinking maybe I might meet a few people doing the panel, so I won't be going through the con with an entire sea of unfamiliar faces? Maybe? Because I know very, very few people at this con. I know Pamela and David and Lydy comfortably. I know Sharyn, but she's Guest of Honor, which means her schedule is a bit full. I know Lyda kind of, as much as one coffee will do. And now Jennet and Elise are being friendly, and that's very welcome. Oh, and I know the Timprov, of course, and if they have a Jamie in the dealers' room I will know Jamie sort of. So I suppose it could be worse for knowing people. I couldn't fit "Marissa I Had to Live in California for Awhile So I Don't Know Many People But I'm Friendly So Please Be Nice To Me" on my badge, so I'm settling for Marissa Lingen instead. I think it'll work.

My brain has a weird misconception of how many days are left until the con, so I woke up thinking I had to get everything done today. Nope. There are some things it'd be good for me to get done today, but I also have tomorrow all day and Friday in the morning.

Last night's relaxing task was making oatmeal raisin cookies for Mark. My hair still smells a little bit like cinnamon and cloves and allspice. This is not a bad thing, although it won't last long; I'll be in the shower soon.

I did not like Cosmopolis, not one little bit, and I don't care what Mr. Clute said about it. I didn't believe in a single one of the characters, and the dialog made me want to screech and throw the book across the room. It was like when sitcoms want to indicate that someone is clever, but the writers themselves are not clever, and the actors are not clever, and if anyone clever is involved with the show at all it's probably the prop girl, who was clutching her head and begging God to make it stop when the rapid-fire stupid dialog was being recorded again and again. In summary: not recommended. I'm hoping this is just a single-book issue, because I have another DeLillo on my pile, Libra, from Michelle and Scott for Christmas. I have no idea whether they gave it to us because one of them liked it and wanted to talk about it, or didn't like it and wanted to talk about it, or thought one of us might like it even if they didn't, or had heard it was good, or had heard me say Cosmopolis was on my library list, or what. We give each other books for such a big variety of reasons that I end up associating books with them (particularly with Michelle) that they may never have read or may not have liked. (We had an e-mail about this earlier, because while I do associate Michelle with Thomas Hardy, she doesn't like him.)

Associations are sad, sad things. I associate C.J. with Sheryl Crow songs because he rolls his eyes and complains every time "All I Wanna Do (Is Have Some Fun)" comes on the radio when we're in the car. (And since KS95 is determined to get old with us, this still happens often enough to notice.) I associate my parents with "Why Don't We Get Drunk and Screw" because I've never heard it anywhere but in their car. Etc. Silly brain.

Ah well; I've started Anne Lesley Groell's Anvil of the Sun, lent me by Stella, and there's Bear's story to read on Scifi.Com, which I haven't gotten to yet but will yet this morning. You know what I like about high fantasy? (Well, one thing, anyway.) Even when it's bad, I get the feeling that the people who wrote it were enjoying themselves. (Maybe especially when it's bad.) You don't write high fantasy to impress people with how clever you are, to get laid, to prove a point...usually. I'm sure a few people do, but for the most part I think it's freer of that than most genres/sub-genres. It has compensatory flaws, to be sure, but it's nice not to feel like half the sentences were an attempt to impress the cute classmate with the black-rimmed glasses. That happens in other genres/sub-genres, too, but the frequency just seems to be slightly lower.

But moving on....

One of the things that's been different about the Not The Moose Book has been the scope of time. Every other book I've written has taken place over weeks or, at most, months; this book takes place over years. So that's another thing to smooth out in the edits, if need be, another bit of roughness as I work. But it's all right. Better to have a rough edge than no edge at all. Rough edges can be smoothed or sharpened.

Which is, in fact, what I've been doing to Reprogramming a bit at a time as I work on other things. If it sounds to you like this has been taking awhile, you're right; it's been extremely difficult for me to summon enthusiasm for this and maintain momentum on the Not The Moose and write short stories now and again. It's easy to lose sight of what the impetus is for working on an already-finished book no one has asked to buy or see especially. The impetus, of course, is to get someone to ask to buy or see it especially, and thus the editing and the typing, thus the time and the effort and the energy. I keep reminding myself that it is worth it. Making a potentially decent book into a decent book is worthwhile activity. It doesn't have to be all Not The Moose all the time. This needs doing, and so it will be done. Eventually. At some point.

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