My Wild Adventures

7 December 2001

Morning! Perhaps even good morning. We shall see. I feel almost entirely not bad, which is a good start. This is the advantage of having three broken ribs, is when two of them heal and you only have one broken rib, it feels like it's fabulous.

Yesterday was a good day. Wrote and read slush in the morning -- I know I'm replying insanely quickly (at least, for the definite rejections, although I'm sending out an acceptance this morning). You're allowed to call me Speedy McFasterson (once). But I don't want to have a huge pile of stories come crashing down on me when I return on January 3. (I leave 12/19. This is why I didn't join the HoliDailies ring: two weeks of absence at the end of the month.) It will crash anyway. I just want it to do so...gently. Oh, and I also got a bunch of shopping done online. Ahh.

In the afternoon, Timprov and I BARTed up to Berkeley. We walked through The Other Change (where the mean guy was nice to us and the nice guy was swearing profusely in the back) and then went to Au Coquelet for work and shop talk and cocoa (for me) and banana soda (for Timprov). Timprov got a bottle of banana syrup so that he can make banana sodas at home. I don't drink sodas, myself. I never got used to the sweetness or the carbonation. And their taste usually only has one layer.

Anyway. Timprov was saying that the important thing, when you're submitting stuff to magazines, is to submit to the magazines you want to be in. Not the ones that get you awards or exposure, necessarily, but the ones you genuinely like and want to be in, regardless of how big or small they are. He includes lots of big markets like Analog on that list, so it's not like his is a plea for the small press. And I agree to him -- it's just that, under the circumstances, I want to be in a lot of stuff.

(He was a bit alarmed: we were talking about my stories, and he said, "Does Datlow have anything?" I said, "I think so." "You think so?" "I'm pretty sure." "But you don't know what." "No." "How long has she had it?" "I don't know. This is why I keep these things written down." "But you don't keep track of your favorite three or four markets?" "Not really, no." I lost a bit of Type A cred there, I think. But come on. I have thirty-three stories out, with more on the way. I have very little idea who has what and for how long, until it gets up in the five or six month range.)

It was a bits and pieces sort of evening -- I read a bit and worked a bit, spent a bit of Quality Time in different ways, wrote in some Christmas cards...simple and good. Came up with another SF mystery short story for my previous matchmaker detective character -- I knew it'd be a series, but I wasn't worried about coming up with new stories for it. It's not like I'm under contract for these. I'll write it when I get around to it.

What I really like about where I am right now is that I have a pretty firm idea of what to do next. It's important to keep working on the Not The Moose Book, and on the story of indeterminate length, and on the off-planet noir story. Those three, right now. I'm pretty sure that "The Butler's Black Arts" will be something I do soon, and I have a few other short stories that are poking at me. But the order is clear; the priority is clear. It may change overnight, but it'll be clear then, too. And that's a very good feeling. I know what I'm doing, I know what I need to do, and there's that. And I like the stuff I need to do. Which is even better.

Today I'm going to Get Things Done. I have to run to the post office for stamps and to send out a non-Christmas-present. I put off sending it, and now it's December, so it'll look like a Christmas present. Drat. So I'm just going to take a piece of paper, is what, and label it "Not A Christmas Present," quite clearly and in large letters. Just so that there's no confusion.

Also, it's library day. I need to know more about MI-5 before I write more of the first part of the NTMB. I can work on the second and third parts in the meantime, it's just that I need to know. If you have any further book ideas for me, either in the Britain 1948-1960 range or in general, e-mail me early, and I might be able to get them today.

I also may find tomatoes today. You just never know, with my wild adventures. (The tomatoes at Albertson's were just uninspiring when we went on Wednesday. And after my fabulous University Coffee Café tomatoes, too. Oh! I don't think I gushed about those! I got too hung up on the Harry Potter movie. Mark and I went to the University Coffee Café in Palo Alto for dinner on Monday -- I think it's a dumb name for a café, frankly, but they had the very best yellow tomatoes with mozzarella and basil and arugula and sourdough, oh, it was so nice. Yum.)

And nobody else get hit by cars. One Morphism reader hit by a car is one more than our quota for the week, thanks. Sheesh. I didn't know I had to tell you people this. (It was Wendy, and I wouldn't be joking about it if she wasn't essentially fine, so rest easy, everybody's fine.)

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