January 4th, 2012


[links] Link salad plans travel

Honesty and depression — Mur Lafferty on mental health.

A Future HistoryCentauri Dreams with a history of space exploration yet to come.

Ohio earthquake was not a natural event, expert says — Frack, baby, frack.

Dallol - The World's Weirdest Volcanic Crater — (Via [info]danjite.)

Hairy-chested crabs seen in Antarctic deep-sea vents

First Hybrid Shark FoundThe first-ever observed hybrid may be a sign the predators are adapting to climate change.

Wildlife find path to safety under US roads — (Via the Infrastructurist.)

Canada-US border crossed by man using iPad as ID — Huh.

It's Over — Writer and war veteran Myke Cole on the US withdrawal from Iraq.

Top Tea Party Republican admits it: We’ve been employing hostage strategy — And that's why people vote Republican: they value good, principled leadership.

Campaign Countdown: Final Report — The Iowa caucus results, in case you missed it elsewhere. Eight votes. Wow.

Three Republican Bears and none Just Right

?otd: How many US states have you visited?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo fatigue)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 9.25 (fitful)
Weight: 211.6
Currently reading: Daughter of the Sword by Steve Bein


[cancer] What constitutes "winning"

Yesterday in comments, Pelican said:

If you don’t mind a follow-up question to your post - it seems like you’ve identified a new definition of “win” in regards to your cancer? Can you talk a bit more about how you came to that new definition (if so) and how, if at all, that changes your emotional experience?

Well, my doctors and I are still aiming for a full cure, but the odds of that keep falling. My own emotional and personal convictions have shifted entirely to the negative as I've discussed again recently [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ]. I don't expect to live to be old. I'll be surprised to live to be 50 at this point. Medical science hasn't given up on curing me, but in effect, I have.

So "winning" for me has stopped meaning a return to full health. That would be double bonus lottery winning, to return to health. "Winning" for me now is living long enough to do the things that are important to me. What those things are will move and change over time, as I continue to live. When I fall ill, especially whenever it is a terminal event as I believe it will be sooner or later, those things will contract along with my life, until my last ambition and final victory will be a graceful farewell.

I came to this definition as a result of my loss of optimism, my loss of my sense of the future. I'm not depressed by this realization. It's just a fact of my existence. I'd be delighted to be proven wrong, but I don't expect it. So, acknowledging my own sense of reality, I redefined winning.

Does it change my emotional experience? As I said, I don't think my existing cancer-related depression has been exacerbated by my attitude. I think it does render me more melancholy than I might otherwise be, but that seems natural. As my therapist has said, I walk every day with death on my shoulder. Looking at death, I try to make my goals and ambitions achievable even within his shadow. It's the ultimate form of living within the moment.

That's my new definition of winning.


[writing|process] Alternating Current - a proposal for a novel I'll probably never write

Just for fun, and to make [info]jackwilliambell happy, I'm posting here a rather old outline for a novel I'll probably never write now. It's called Alternating Current. It's about Nikolai Tesla and Harry Houdini coming back from the dead to wreak vengeance on an immortal Guglielmo Marconi for stealing Tesla's secrets.

Note that this is a rather old outline, from a time before I'd sold any novels, and I've never tried to market or write this book, other than a couple of short stories drawn from the backstory. Enjoy this for what it is, an early-career Jay Lake idea that never made it into production, and a mediocre example of the art of outlining.

Collapse )