Wednesday, May 31, 2006

This was going to be a kind of Wiscon post but I don't have the energy right now. I just got bad news about my uncle. His lung cancer has progressed to the point where they're saying good-bye. One of my cousins was able to fly out to be with him and his wife. Everyone else is so far away.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Wiscon's over. The drive home was fairly uneventful once we got some caffeine into Alan. He started the drive and promptly crashed. I took over and, while falling asleep wasn't an issue, noticing something off to the side and finding the car swerving off into that direction was. He was supposed to keep me awake and, instead, I was throwing questions out to him in panic. "Who was your favorite new person? What was your best conversation? What gossip haven't you shared?" There was also some poking. "You have to stay awake!" One can of coffee drink later we were just fine. No storms. No traffic. Everyone else seems to have had a much harder time getting home.

We arrived home to a sweltering house, smelling of cat and dog. The puppy promptly peed on my sandaled foot. We had a cryptic message about our mortgage needing payment but couldn't get more information because both the bank and the mortgage offices were closed. I realized I'd lost my debit card and had to call to cancel it. Thank goodness that bank still had staff on duty. (She was probably in a country that doesn't have Memorial Day.)

Saturday, May 13, 2006

I had a nice break from the stress yesterday when I drove up with the Hegge side of the family to Fargo/Moorhead for a wedding. Dad drove over from Brainerd and fishing opener for the night. Much fun was had by all. I was so tired, I only danced to one song, Love Shack. Very sad.

Publisher's Weekly has a mixed, mostly positive review of Alan's upcoming short story collection. (Of course, I think they are way off in the "self-conscious blandness" comment. I can think of a lot of words to describe Alan's stories but "bland" is not one of them!)

I am about 5/6 of the way through Hal Duncan's Vellum and am absolutely loving it. I can't wait to get to WisCon to discuss it and congratulate Hal.
I got the fifth installment of Rabid Transit to the printer on Thursday. We'll have it time for WisCon. The title is from an old Italian saying and fits well with our stories this year. Here's the text Chris wrote for the back cover:

"The stories in Long Journeys, Great Lies—the newest installment in the acclaimed Rabid Transit series—are meditations on travel, voyages, exile and escape. Some are adventurous, others politically charged. Some will take you to far-off lands while others will bring you back to a strange place called home. No matter what, they will excite, soothe, thrill, frighten and provoke."

This month has been crazy with WisCon stuff. I finished up as best I could with readings scheduling. I had no idea how much work goes into planning the convention until I started helping out a couple of years ago. My appreciation has grown over time. I'm talking about work that doesn't end with the convention and continues pretty much the entire year to bring together all the wonderful details we mostly take for granted. Readings is a very, very small part of things but to many who attend, an important part. There is a certain sense of entitlement for some writers for panels and readings. Not enough of us are helping out with other parts of the convention. I worry sometimes when I see how long the core group of volunteers has been doing this and don't see enough other people stepping in to help out. We're all really busy during the convention but stopping by to see what needs to be done for an hour or so when you have a lull once during the weekend would be really helpful. Childcare, consuite, greenroom, registration: there are a lot of different choices of places to help.

By the way, I really could use some help next year with readings. Feel free to e-mail me or talk to me at the convention, if you think you might be interested.