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Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2007-05-23 04:48
Subject: [writing|personal] Miscellaneous updatery visits the title company
Security: Public
Tags:conventions, personal, portland, travel, writing
Yesterday was interesting, in an overloaded for bear sort of way. Busy run through the spin cycle at the day job, followed by a visit to the title company to sign the paperwork closing the sale of Viejo Rancho Lake. Assuming no odd last minute hitches, that's pretty much it. There's a Nuevo Rancho Lake in the wings, still waiting on some details to settle.

In the department of being blocked, yesterday afternoon at the Tuesday Fireside session I wrote a foreword to Bruce Taylor's excellent novel Edward, worked on a joint project with Bruce Holland Rogers, proofed the typescript of a story in the upcoming DAW anthology Wizards, Inc., worked on a project for specficrider, critiqued four manuscripts for the MisCon writers' workshop, and reviewed some intellectual property documentation for the day job.

And yes, this still counts as being blocked because I didn't produce new fiction. At least I'm back to being productive.

We had a dinner afterwards with davidlevine, maryrobinette, thirdworld, agrathea, karindira and me. This afternoon I'm tooling up for MisCon, with another dinner tonight with danjite and khaybee, along with the_child, tillyjane, kenscholes and possibly lasirenadolce.

Off to Montana at the crack of crack tomorrow, carpooling with danjite, khaybee, tillyjane and lasirenadolce. Oh, the songs we'll sing.

Should title companies somehow be in the publishing business?
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manmela
User: manmela
Date: 2007-05-23 15:43 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Bruce Holland Rogers is apparently scheduled to come and talk at my mainstream writer's circle in the UK (as I was informed last night). I don't know the date yet, but these things get planned a long way in advance. I think my circle must be slowly coming around to SF/F as I read my short story "Fever" to them last night and they all seemed to really like it. Now to try and get it published somewhere!

Today has been working on the other short story I want to do this month (so I can submit to Interzone) and it's involved a lot of research into how the Kansas Police Department works and understanding the difference between a Sheriff and a Chief (Amazing how fun it can be reading Town Council minutes).

If I can get both stories out and submitted, hopefully I might be able to get an acceptance before Mr Rogers comes to talk.





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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-05-23 15:54 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Good luck on your stories! Bruce is a great guy, tell him I said hello.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-05-23 16:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Also, i suspect you're running into the distinction between city and county governments. Which varies somewhat from state to state, and is generally confusing to non-Americans, and even to many Americans.

Our federal system has a hierarchy of national gov -> state gov -> county gov. City govs are optional -- everybody lives in some county (except maybe in DC, I'm not sure), not everybody lives in a city.

However in some states, there are towns or townships which serve the function of county governments -- the counties in Massachusetts are largely vestigial on this account.

Sheriffs are normally county law enforcement heads. Chiefs are normally city law enforcement heads. Both run what you would recognize as a police department. State and federal law enforcement work differently.

Blah blah blah. Let me know if you want more discussion of this.
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manmela
User: manmela
Date: 2007-05-23 16:17 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
The more I read the more confusing it gets. As I understand it (and I'm probably wrong), a Sheriff, is like an administrative head (looks after jails and serving courty orders, etc.), whereas a chief is more about patrols and crime fighting.

I have an imaginary town in Kansas (obscure Wizard of Oz reference), population of about 2300, off the beaten track (I say about 40 miles from I70). There's only one full-time police officer in the town / county, a part-time volunteer deputy and the ability to call in assistance from neighbouring town/counties if needed (I understand this can actually be case although maybe not in Kansas). I think this police officer would be a Chief rather than a Sheriff, but I may be wrong.

I'm trying hard not to fall into the stereotypes set up by all those horror movies I've seen (It's not a horror story and the inhabitants of Fleming, Kansas are all quite normal). It doesn't matter too much if it's wrong, but I hate when stories are set in the UK and everyone is wearing bowler hats and going "cor blimey Mary Poppins" so I thought I'd make an effort to try and be correct.

If anyone needs help with culture or life in the UK for their stories I'm happy to help where I can.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-05-23 17:03 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Your comment about sheriff's departments and police departments is generally true in urban areas where the city tax base supports police. In smaller towns and rural areas without police departments of their own, the sheriff's department will do all the patrols and emergency response and crime fighting as well. (In very sparsely populated or poor rural areas, the only law enforcement might be an occasional visit by a state trooper.)

Your description of the town probably would include a full-time, elected sheriff who works in the county seat (which may or may not be your town) with responsibility for the town inasmuch as it is part of the county. He may have part-time or reserve deputies, even if he lacks a larger deparment. Your town may have a very small police department in its own right, which if it is literally or two people may report to the mayor rather than to a police chief per se.

Also, tillyjane (a/k/a my mom) grew up in rural Kansas in a small town. I'm sure she'd be happy to talk to you. Email me and I'll connect you two up.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-05-23 17:04 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Also, sheriffs are usually elected through the normal political process. Police chiefs are usually appointed by the city or town government.
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manmela
User: manmela
Date: 2007-05-23 22:29 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Cool, thanks. I'll collect some thoughts together and be in touch
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Bob
User: yourbob
Date: 2007-05-23 15:44 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Should title companies somehow be in the publishing business?

I know my mom's has been involved in publishing (she works for a title co.). But it's nothing official.
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jenntheamazon
User: jenntheamazon
Date: 2007-05-23 16:33 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I'm sure your "muse" will return once all the crazy stuff with selling, buying and moving is done. Either that or the thoughts of the realtors are screaming so loudly that its drowing out all other comprehensible (and not so comprehensible ;-P) ideas.

Oh and drive safe to Montana. If you see Patty Briggs, tell her the Tri-Cities says hello. :-)
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-05-23 17:03 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Thank'ee, and I'll say hey...
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Grant Kruger
User: thirdworld
Date: 2007-05-23 21:22 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I really enjoyed dinner. It's a great group.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-05-23 22:13 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Oh, likewise. Quite the conversation last night.
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