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September 29, 2003

Blub

Morning's email holds a 22 day rejection from ASIM. Called my story "a bit silly." It is and it's supposed to be. Seems that wasn't the selling point I'd hoped it would be. Hmm.

Spent most of yesterday trying to install a replacement sink sprayer. The old one decided Saturday evening that it had really always wanted to be a fountain. Very pretty, but not practical, as it no longer had an 'Off' switch. After a few hours of struggle with enigmatic directions and arcane tools, it's still not ready to go. Among other things, the directions left off a material needed to keep from turning your undersink into MildewLandTM! Such fun. Something to look forward to after work today. Otherwise, little to report.

Currently Reading: Alan Moore: Portrait of an Extraordinary Gentleman, the tribute to the comic book legend on his 50th birthday. I didn't know that much about his personal life before now, and frankly, he's pretty trippy.

September 26, 2003

Bam! Pow! Publish!

After a lovely night out with Lisa (dinner & a movie), I return home to discover this: the cover art to Path of the Just, that superhero antho I keep harping on from time to time. It's real, I tells ya! Oh, sure, there's been some delay, but still. By the way, the guy in the patriotic tights on the cover? That's Sentinel, their equivalent of Superman. Anyone else (besides my Lisa) think he bears a strong resemblance to George Clooney?

Soon to be Reading: In about five minutes, Monstrous Regiment, the new Discworld novel! Oh joy, oh rapture!

September 25, 2003

Hey, Apparently I'm An Unreconstructed Leftist

Well, here's something you don't see that often: the National Review's editor denouncing librarians. Why? Because librarians are opposed to the Patriot Act. Fascinating.

I wonder if the National Review has also considered:

  • that they only have about 15,664 paid subscribers (according to Ulrich's),

  • that just under 4,000 of those subscribers are libraries (according to WorldCat),

  • and that libraries everywhere are cutting subscriptions in order to meet their budgets?
Yes, annoy 25% of your subscription base. That's a good plan.

September 20, 2003

Not Dead Enuf

Ah, a 19 day personal rejection in the email, from Say... for a couple of death-themed poems. One of them tempted the editor mightily, but not enuf. All right then.

Little else to report, except that toast is delicious.

September 19, 2003

Type Like A Pirate

Ah, ye knew this here day would come, didn't ye, me hearrties? Well, if ye read Dave Barry, ye probably did. The rest o' ye lubbers prob'ly saw it on CNN er the like. As fer me, I just like imitatin' the Sea Cap'n 'n' this gives me a legitimate excuse.

Brief writin' news: the scurvy dogs at Indy Men's Magazine ha' keelhauled me recent submission ta 'em. Arrr...I'm not attractive. Blast! Perhaps 'tis time ta go splice the mainbrace. Arrr.

September 18, 2003

Let's See, News

Let's see, news. "Last Night" is going to appear in Fables starting next week. No word on "Evening with the Minotaur," except that I now note from the publisher that the antho's release date has been pushed back to October. And just got the official word from SFWA: they'll be raising their minimum pay rate for membership qualification from 3 cents a word to 5 cents a word starting in January of 2004. Interesting. I wonder if this will result in rate increases at the smaller markets? And then be followed by some of these smaller markets disappearing?

Hmm. I find myself posting more and more these days. What's up with that?

Currently Reading: Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency, by James Bamford. Interesting, and more than a little unnerving. Case in point: Operation Northwoods. Ack.

September 17, 2003

Sweet, Nourishing Data!

The internet is back! The internet is back!

I'm so happy.

September 16, 2003

Bring the Candle Closer, Willya? I Can't Read This Parchment

Let's see, can I check my work email?
Yes.
How about my personal email?
No.
All right, how's the web? Can I see the library catalog?
Yes.
Uh, wait. Can I actually search the library catalog?
Yes, but you can't click on any of the results. The citation page will have to be enough. And you can't follow any links to other university libraries either.
Oh. Um, how about Galileo?
Yes, but you can't open any of the databases.
Sigh. How about CNN?
No.
Weather.com?
No.
How about Unshelved?
Yes, but he hasn't put the new strip up yet.
Geez. Can I go to J-Walker?
Yes, but you won't get any of the formatting. Standard font on a white background only.
Well, that's something. Can I go to Greg's site?
Yes, but you can't open the comments. And that goes for all the other Journalscape sites.
Man, the comments are half the fun. How about SFF sites, like Toby's?
No.
Anybody else? David's? Patrick's? Jed? Nick? Scott?
Yes, if I feel like it. Otherwise, no, no, no, and no.
Can I see my journal?
Yes, but not the comments.
...
How about hell? Should I go to hell?
You're already there.

This had been going on at work for two days now. Two days. God help me. It's a good thing the books still work.

September 14, 2003

Number 400

Hey, a milestone: yesterday I received my four hundredth rejection since I started keeping track here. To make it more worthwhile, it was a rejection from Marvel Comics. Yes, Marvel Comics. Not a script on spec, not a sign-your-rights away to Epic, just checking to see if I have what it takes to be part of the Marvel team. Apparentally, I don't. And to make it truly memorable, they rejected me twice: got two form 'no' letters from them, the first in my SASE, the second in an official Marvel envelope with Spider-Man on the front, swooping in to clobber me himself! Take that, True Believer!

I feel like I should send them something. "Congratulations! You're my 400th, er, rejector! Here's a year's supply of paperclips." Ah well.

September 12, 2003

I Look To The Heavens And Am Mightily Confused. So What Else Is New?

Thanks to the scientific expertise of Lisa (not my Lisa, Greg van Eekhout's Lisa), I have learned that I have been living a lie.

It's true. I am not a Sagittarius. I am an Ophiuchus, which means that instead of a centaur archer, my astrological guide is a snake handler. Just like Jim "I am the Lizard King" Morrison.

>Hmm. They're setting off fireworks up the road, the echoes bouncing off the mountain. High school football game? Delayed 9-11 event? Weirdness from the country club? Whoever and whyever, they're scaring the cats.

Reading: Still reading Dreamer, but I paused long enough to read the exciting conclusion of Vol. II of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (at last! the secret of H-142 revealed!) and issue 2 of 1602, the Elizabethan alternate-world epic from Neil Gaiman. Big fun. Run right out and get them.

September 11, 2003

Three Thousand

I live up the road from Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park. If you're a Civil War buff, you know that's where the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain took place. Today, in remembrance of the September 11th dead, the battlefield is flying three thousand American flags. The pictures don't really do it justice, but you get the idea. There are some other memorials along the same lines elsewhere, but I think this is the only one on a place where Americans once tried to tear the country apart. It's spooky, and moving, and makes you proud.

I'll be lightweight tomorrow. Come back then.

September 09, 2003

No Paradox, No Fantasy

A double disappointment today: got a 165 day rejection letter (albeit very nice and personal) from Paradox: The Magazine of Historical and Speculative Fiction, and an answer to a query from Carina at Realms of Fantasy. It seems the story I was waiting on with such high hopes never made it. Oh, and I mailed both these stories on the same day. How very odd.

But writing is good, even if the sales are not. Work is also good, despite my having been forced to help a finalist for Laziest College Student Ever, Tier II University, Southeastern Division yesterday. Wow.

September 08, 2003

Oh Good Lord

Yes, this little wonder reflects well on my chosen profession. First, Giles gives up library work for the life of a shopkeeper, now this. Couldn't they have come out with a Dewey action figure instead?

September 05, 2003

Four Years Tops

More amusement from California politics (but not from the Governor's race). I'd pay good money to have someone perform this test on Dubya, but I bet the Secret Service would have 'em tossed out before they got through the killing jar question. Hee hee.

Currently Reading: Dreamer of Dune, the biography of Frank Herbert.

September 04, 2003

Devil In The Details

Got the proofs for "Evening" back to the editor. I'm also organizing some manuscripts that need to be rounded up and shoved back out the door. They've been malingering a bit too long. Haven't written much in a few days, as have been busy at work. Among other things (namely lots of library instruction sessions, with more to come), I'm now the official webmaster for the library's web site. Frankly, it's a mess. On one hand, I'd like to get in there and clean up the coding, possibly even rearranging the whole structure. At least change to the look. But on the other hand, there's supposedly a new official university template due out in a couple weeks. Emphasis on the word "supposedly." So I'm torn, as my urge to tidy things up a bit wars with the natural response to not waste time fixing something that'll be thrown out anyway.

There's other news, of course: Lisa traded in her car for something a bit safer: a Nissan Murano. She's happy, except for the fact that a few of her coworkers seem to think she's somehow tricked me out of my own new car (I'm still driving our '94 Corolla). She hasn't. Lisa's mindcontrol powers are quite limited since I got my tinfoil beanie. Besides, her old car was little more than an aluminum envelope on wheels, designed for speeds you rarely reach in Atlanta traffic. And I'm just driving a few miles down the road to work, and you don't need much to make that trip. But it's sweet that they care. Or more likely I'm just a convenient excuse for them to tease her.

Just Read: Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right, the best-seller (thanks to Bill O'Reilly and Fox News) by Al Franken of SNL. Very funny, a bit depressing, and highly recommended. Note: despite the light tone of this book, it's quite clear that Franken is sincerely pissed off.