February 8th, 2012


[links] Link salad wonders where the week is going

Westward Weird came out yesterday — I have a story therein, "The Temptation of Eustace Prudence McAllen", first in the doc, which is a nice position. Various of my co-authors have commented on the anthology and their stories, including Seanan McGuire, Dean Wesley Smith, and Steven Saus.

Próba Kwiatów - Jay Lake — A mixed review, in Polish, of the Polish edition of my novel Trial of Flowers.

SF in SF — Just a reminder that this coming Saturday, 2/11, I will be at SF in SF with K.W. Jeter and Rudy Rucker. If you're in the Bay Area, come on down.

10 Tips on Writing from David Ogilvy — He's talking about ad copy, not fiction, but this is still interesting and worthwhile stuff. (Via Curiosity Counts.)

Kill the Local News — Writer Jeremy Tolbert on sensationalism.

Mindful Eating as Food for Thought

Scale of the Universe — Another fun take on the "powers of 10" meme. (Snurched from Steve Buchheit.)

What did people do: in a Medieval City? — (Via [info]danjite.)

Self-Cloning Seagrass May Be World's Oldest Living Thing

Mars-bound NASA rover carries coin for camera checkup — This is cool and kind of poetic.

Mapping the Road Ahead for Autonomous Cars

Turing's Enduring ImportanceThe path computing has taken wasn't inevitable. Even today's machines rely on a seminal insight from the scientist who cracked Nazi Germany's codes. An interesting article, although I wish in mentioning his suicide it had acknowledged the disgusting way Turing was treated by his own people.

The State of Gay Marriage — Being a handy map to show you where bigotry has triumphed, and where respect for basic human rights is gaining ground.

The Single Most Powerful Quote From California's Prop 8 Ruling"Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California, and to officially reclassify their relationships and families as inferior to those of opposite-sex couples." Like opposition to interracial marriage forty years ago, Prop 8 is bigotry, pure and simple, a combination of narrow-minded religious privilege and typically unfounded conservative alarmism. Like opposition to interracial marriage today, forty years from now people will be ashamed to admit in public what they once voted and for and believed.

The Business Case Against Karen Handel — John Scalzi with a very sensible take on the (surprising to me) resignation of Karen Handel from the Susan G. Komen foundation. For my own part, I'll observe that as usual when the Right tries strong-arm tactics, they only see unfairness when they get caught out.

Planned Parenthood's Deep Bench — Ta-Nehisi Coates with some interesting thoughts on the fight that Komen picked when they decided to show their true conservative colors.

Why the Energy-Industrial Elite Has It In for the Planet — Social and political commentary on the funding impetus behind the intellectual fraud of climate change denial.

Jesus versus the GOPThe man from Nazareth would have been appalled by the “Christian” Republican candidates. The only thing I have to say to political Christianists is "Matthew 6:6".

‘We the People’ Loses Appeal With People Around the World — The declining influence of the US Constitution overseas.

Republicans Finally Realize They're Helping ObamaLike their counterparts from 16 years before, Republicans took control of the House of Representatives last year filled with revolutionary zeal, assuming that they could leverage their hold over one branch of Congress into sweeping changes in the national agenda. And like their predecessors, they blundered into high-profile confrontations with a Democratic president and suffered prolonged and deep damage in their public standing, with each new defeat slowly leeching the fanatical determination out of them.

Santorum Upsets G.O.P. Race With Three Victories — I really can't decide who would be the bigger disaster for this country, Senator Frothy Mix or Governor 1%. Our last Republican president set an extremely low bar for destructive incompetence, something the GOP electorate seems to have very conveniently forgotten.

?otd: How was your Tuesday?

Writing time yesterday: 2.0 hours (Sunspin revisions)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 8.25 (solid)
Weight: 230.8
Currently reading: n/a (between books)


[books|writing] Calamity of So Long a Life is out to my last-first readers

Late yesterday afternoon I put the finishing touches on revisions to Calamity of So Long a Life, Sunspin volume one, and sent it out to my last-first readers. Specifically, several generous individuals who hadn't read the previous draft or otherwise been enmeshed in the project, so I could get a reader reaction. I am hoping to get some feedback by late next week so I can make final revisions and send this out to la agente before the end of the month, per my planned production calendar.

I must confess to being a bit daunted about jumping into the next book, which I won't do until April. It's already half-written, I only owe myself another 100,000 words of first draft to nail down volume two, but the overall project is so filling my head right now that I feel as if it will leak out my ears.

Meanwhile, I have two short fiction rewrite requests on my desk to fulfill, a book review to write, and ambitions to make more progress on the synopsis of Little Dog. Given that I have the rest of the month in which to do these things, I am feeling pretty good about my goals.


[cancer] Still with the spoons, plus a bit of unrelated dreaming

The first thing I want to say is that I continue to feel much better these days. My bounceback from this last round of chemotherapy is progressing much more swiftly and smoothly than it did from my 2010 chemo series. My mental energy is very nearly 100%, and at least up to a point, my physical energy is strong. I sleep well, get things done during the day (including basic housework etc. — which was impossible for me for months), am productive in my writing and have the time, energy and focus to parent [info]the_child.

But still with the spoons... Some days I wipe out early and sleep long. As happened yesterday. It's tied to how much I've done that day, and fairly specifically to how much driving I've done. For example, yesterday I had lunch with a friend on the southwest end of Portland (far from Nuevo Rancho Lake), then yesterday evening I drove [info]the_child up to northeast part of town (also reasonably far from Nuevo Rancho Lake) for a long, late session with her eighth grade project mentor. By the time I got home around 7:45 I was staggeringly tired, and I was lights out at 8:15.

I'm not sure if the driving is the specific factor that exhausts me, or if it is just a proxy for my overall level of activity. Days when I stay home and lay low, I can stay up til 10:00 or so, sleep six or seven hours, and be fine. This is pretty close to my ordinary behavior when I am at baseline health. Days when I am out and about look a lot more like yesterday, with noticeable fatigue, early bedtimes and hard sleep.

And of course, because I feel fine, I rarely remember to take this fatigue into account. It's not like while I was on chemo, when every spoon spent was painfully obvious. (For more on spoons, see here: [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ].) So I barrel through the days as if I'm healthy, then have a wipe out lottery in the evenings.

Still, a vast improvement. Still, annoying.

And on an unrelated note, last night I dreamt I was at a big potluck picnic with, among other people, [info]daviddlevine. At one point I approached a cold case someone had set up filled with desserts. (It suspiciously resembled the dessert case at the Sellwood location of Papa Haydn's.) Except that one of the items on display was a sort of box made of head cheese with pickled jalapeno inclusions among the organ meats. Small items of patisserie were in various compartments of the head cheese box. I could not even begin to imagine the point of that presentation, and was fairly grossed out about it.

Ah, my dreaming mind, such a lovely landscape it is.