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    why yes, i am avoiding work

    (sorry for repost, it is due to WP/LJ crossposting dipshittery)

    get a picture frame
    » put together gift basket box
    get envelopes
    » put chance issues in envelopes :)
    box up Walker Papers for Mr. M
    – DEMON HUNTS revisions^H^H^H^H change of plans, work on critique instead
    – call bonk
    make bread
    do laundry (Ted’s doing this, bless him)
    – send receipts (VERY IMPORTANT)

    Nice swim this morning. I did my first 500 in 9 minutes, which is faster than I usually…bother to do, if we’re being honest. I don’t think I could do one faster than about 8 minutes right now anyway, but I was pretty pleased to have done a 9-minute one. Technically I’m supposed to have one more day of 1K swimming, but I did 1300 meters today (to, er, bring my ytd km swum up to a round number, because I’m a dork like that) and I may just go straight to 1500 meters tomorrow.

    This morning I received Jackie Kessler and Caitlin Kittredge‘s BLACK AND WHITE, which is a superhero novel I’ve been dying to read ever since Jackie mentioned it. Now I must restrain myself and not read it until at least tonight, ’cause I have work to do! (Apparently that’s how reading is going: I either want to read something RIGHT NOW, or I can put it off indefinitely. No wonder I haven’t been buying a lot of books.)

    Oh, speaking of reading, it turned out I had the HOUSE OF M graphic novel…

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    bits and bobs

    Ted went Christmas shopping in Dublin yesterday, where he says he did not find anything at all that he was looking for for me. On the other hand, he did find the man who sells honey-roasted pecans and cashews and cinnamon-and-sugar-soaked dried apple slices, and this is probably worth the price of admission. Except, of course, the danger of knowing where that shop *is*, now…. :)

    We are not, at this house, in a turkey stupor, because we’re not holding Thanksgiving until tomorrow (when our ONE IRISH FRIEND WHO *LOVES* US is coming up), and so today instead of feeling, well, stupefied, I’m feeling rather mellow and sleepily pleasant and have plans to write a couple thousand words on “Cairn Dancer” and clean the living room while Ted makes bread rolls and french-fried onions and whatever else he’s planning to make today in preparation for tomorrow.

    Here’s the thing (I said, quite randomly) about drawing: I’m not good enough to draw pictures just out of my head, and while I’ve got at least one CD of artist reference photographs, it’s a CD and not actually very convenient unless I either have a computer handy (which, since we only have one right now, I don’t really) or if I want to print them out, which is inevitably more bother than I want to put into it. I often use magazines and stuff to draw from, but I don’t actually *buy* magazines (especially here, where they’re unbelievably expensive) and the people in them are all digitally touched up anyway. There must be good books of these sorts of things, though. Anybody got any suggestions?

    (I could, I suppose, print out copies of my own photographs that I’ve taken. That only just occurred to me. Still goes through the ‘have to print it out’ thing, but at least I know I like the source material. :) This is a good idea! Why didn’t I think of it before?)

    I may go out today and buy a couple of floor lamps. I really hate the overhead lighting in the living room. Oh, wait. I have a better idea. I could wait until Kate gets here with her *car*, and *then* go buy floor lamps, which would mean not having to negotiate awkward packages and taxis! Wahah! I am CHEENUS!

    One of the things I noticed in doing the copy edits for THE PRETENDER’S CROWN is that I didn’t miss the 30+ pages I took out of the first 200 or so. Not really. I missed them because I knew they’d been there, but it was kind of an active effort on my part: ah, yes, and this is where that whole section would be…. So apparently they could afford to be chopped, and maybe I’ll put them up on cemurphy.net as DVD extras when the book is released. It’s unusual for me to even consider that, because normally when things get dropped it’s because the story has changed so hugely that they no longer fit anywhere at all, whereas these are sections which still work perfectly well within the context of the book, it’s just that they weren’t strictly *needed*. So I’ll probably take advantage of that, since it won’t often happen. :)

    All right, this is once more starting to look a lot like procrastination, so I think I’ll go shower and do some work on my short story and stuff. *scoots off*

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    tomorrow, we write

    Today is going to be full of Doing Work That Isn’t Writing. I have a dream that someday I will no longer be behind the 8 ball. (This would no doubt be made easier if I would stop taking on new projects. I spent a good hour on Saturday looking at my shelf of books I’ve written and trying to figure out where “taking a break” fit into the next few years of finishing those series. I did not come up with an answer. On the other hand, nor did I have spastic ZOMG I CANNOT LET THE MOMENTUM STOP MUST DO MORE OLD RACES/REVISE THE YA NOVEL/PITCH NEW SERIES thoughts, either, which is at least something, and which may have to do with two different people mentioning recently that I seem to be taking up most of a shelf at their local Barnes & Nobles, and with having sent me this photo, taken at a Borders in Florida:

    Perhaps it is slowly sinking in that I do not need to add a zillion new projects to my plate every month. Keeping up with the ones I’ve got is quite enough. I swear to God, though. Do other writers have this problem?)

    Anyway. Today’s Thinks To Do, none of which are writing and all of which are work:

    – create an ad for Chance #1
    – email Rich the stuff he asked for
    – email *more* to FPI
    read & comment on other short story
    – send photo to CI guy
    email Ardian to check in on cover status
    email editors to ask about cover art
    email to set up an interview on the 25th

    And, tomorrow:

    – start writing “Cairn Dancer”

    At least I read three or four books this weekend. One was KINGS & ASSASSINS, by Lane Robins, and which isn’t due out until next year. Same release day as THE PRETENDER’S CROWN, in fact, and I’d humbly submit that if you enjoyed THE QUEEN’S BASTARD at all, you probably ought to go get MALEDICTE, first in Lane’s series, so that you can pick up both PRETENDER’S CROWN and KINGS & ASSASSINS on April 28th and settle in for a week of politics, murder and betrayal.

    I also finished reading John Scalzi‘s GHOST BRIGADES and LAST COLONY, the latter of which I enjoyed *enormously* (I liked GHOST BRIGADES just fine, mind you, but I *really* enjoyed LAST COLONY), and am going to have to find ZOE’S TALE so I can get it all from her perspective. I can’t, mind you, help but feel that Zoe is a slightly older version of Scalzi’s own daughter, but given that from his periodic mention of her on his blog his daughter sounds *awesome*, this is really pretty much okay with me. :)

    And I read Robin McKinley‘s DRAGONHAVEN, which I thought, in the opening pages, was not going to draw me in (which is a bit like saying, I don’t know, like I thought oxygen would stop sustaining me), but which, once I adapted to the voice, was actually pretty wonderful. I really doubt there’ll ever be a sequel, and in fact I’m not sure a sequel would *work*, but I still want a sequel. :)

    Hm. The length of this entry is starting to look a bit like procrastination, isn’t it?

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