Emerging Moderately Triumphant

9 May 2002

Aaaack! The Onomastikon is gone! Drat, drat, drat. That was a really good site. Last names included, all kinds of ethnicities. Now I don't know what I'm going to do when I want a random Czech last name. (Well, in the case of Czech, I grabbed one out of my Omaha memories. But say Samoan. What will I do about the Samoans?)

Ah well. I finished "Copyrighted Memories" (subtitled "Because 'Zed, Help!' Isn't Really A Title") and shipped it off to the writing group. It's rather rough. Rather. The main character needs fleshing out a good deal, I think, but it was 4400 words in basic form, and I think it'll be a good deal longer than that in its eventual form. We'll see what the group has to say about it, other than, "Yuck!"

You know, I said that I could knock off a short story in 24 hours when I want to, and I can. But the minute I wrote that, my brain got ornery. No surprise, I suppose -- it's been ornery before. I worked on three different novels yesterday and wrote a few paragraphs of the middle of a short story, though. They just started chasing each other around my head. And I was trying to work virtuously and all. Grrr.

Stupid brain.

But it is drafted, for better or worse (and I know which I'd pick), and I'm fairly happy with the other material I wrote. And none of the three novels I worked on were totally new ideas, which I consider a bonus. It's kind of sad, that lately I'm feeling like any day in which I don't make a lot more novel work for myself is a bonus day.

I hope I always feel like that, honestly, because running out of novel ideas would just be terrible. I don't think it's horribly likely, though.

Yesterday Amber came over, and she and Timprov and I drove across to pick Mark up from Stanford, and then we all headed up 280 (much nicer than 101) to the Great Overland Trading Bookstore Company. We got there five or ten minutes before they closed, and I got my book: An Experience of Finland by W.R. Mead. It looks delightfully useful. The flap says there is "much on Anglo-Finnish relations" which is all for the best. And it was published by C. Hurst & Co. In the introduction, the author refers to the publisher himself as Christopher Hurst. Ceej! Why didn't you tell me you ran a British publishing company? (And why on earth do you let them call you by your fake name?)

This sort of thing never happens when your name is Marissa Lingen. Ever, ever, ever.

We introduced Amber to House of Nanking (Timprov hadn't gotten to go when we took Ceej), and she looked at us round-eyed in the middle of the appetizers: "Is it all this yummy?" Yes, yes in fact it is. Splendid time had by all, and I added to the list of stuff we ought to do before we leave, some of it with Amber. (I have a list of fun stuff I want to remember to do. Mark was skeptical until it got him where he had forgotten he wanted to go. Now he's just tolerant.)

I just got a notice in one of the writing job newsletters I get: "We invite experienced professional writers and photographers to contact us if interested in assignments for our two publications, EXOTIC PLACES TO RETIRE and PLACES TO RETIRE IN CANADA." That just amused me. It amused me, in fact, a good deal more than the spam advertising "Rape!" That didn't amuse me at all, in fact.

So. I have to call the apartment office this morning, because there's another car that's been parking in our assigned parking spot (which would not be a big deal except that it leaves us with nowhere to park, and if there are going to be assigned spots...). And I'm meeting David up in Berkeley for coffee in the late morning, so that'll be good, too. If I can only get this short story to actually send to the group members, we'll be set to go. Mostly. And I don't think we ever get closer than mostly, anyway.

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