In Which Our Heroine Smells Smoke, Still

11 October 2004

The next-door neighbors to the south have been burning leaves like crazy. They did it all day yesterday, and now they're at it again. They started at 7:30 this morning. The smell is overwhelming. It would be pleasantly autumnal from several blocks away, or for an hour or two, but the constant column of smoke pouring into our backyard (and through the office windows, if we leave them open) is just too much. I've closed the office windows, and I hope it doesn't get too hot in here as the afternoon progresses, but it was that or flee. Or possibly both.

I finished Mortal Engines and read Georgette Heyer's The Talisman Ring yesterday. That's my second Heyer, and I think I approve. Enough to give the rest of them a go, at least. I'm amused by them, which seems like the point. I started Rosemary Kirstein's The Lost Steersman, because I've had enough meh books for awhile and needed a few good ones in a row, and I liked the first one (or two, depending on how you're counting the omnibus) well enough to trust this a bit.

I've been typing longhand stuff from my paper journal into the computer. I hadn't done so since December. Oops. So there's a fair amount to put into various files. It's a good time to do it, though, because there are edit notes on Thermionic Night and Sampo that really need to be stuck together before I do the edits. I'm not doing any of them now. I'm just writing them down in one place, a sheaf of scribbled-upon pages. There are also notes on The Mark of the Sea Serpent and Zodiac House and Midnight Sun Rising and The True Tale of Carter Hall and more, mini-scenelets, snippets of fiction from all over the map.

This may be a good way to get myself into the mindset of working on short stories, of working on something I might finish before the next morning. Or it may just make me yearn to work on all the books for which I have snips and snaps down. I don't know. Mark and I are heading up to the city to get lunch and printer toner (the places nearby don't have the right kind of toner), and I'll need to get groceries today, and it's supposed to be the last day above 70 until spring, so it seems like I should do some of the necessary yard work while it's nice. Except that the yard is full of smoke, so it's not nice at all.

I wish I knew when they were going to quit. Wouldn't it make sense to burn leaves later in the week, when it would be cooler? Maybe? Ah well; I have no control over the neighbors' conflagrations.

Which have, by now, been going for four hours on a Monday morning. Oof. I'm sorry I'm on about this, but with my nose it's a bit like being a dog: if there's something distracting to smell, it's hard to focus on anything else. And covering my paws with my nose and baying doesn't seem like an option.

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