Scheherazade in Blue Jeans
freelance alchemist
First Editions 
16th-Jun-2014 09:33 pm(no subject)
Everything hurts/Doesn't work
Orthopedist: *palpates ankle and foot*
Me: "OW" at appropriate points.
Orthopedist: "...that's not where your ligament is. That's bone."

So the reason my ankle wasn't getting any better even though I was wearing the air splint religiously is that I do not *have* a sprained ankle, I have a broken foot. Or bone bruise. They apparently get the same treatment, so we're doing that treatment - seriously heavy-duty boot to stabilize my entire foot, not just my ankle.

If I'm not seeing improvement in two weeks, I get an MRI to figure out why. But I'll be in the boot for a month, best-case scenario.


Related: Am looking for a ride to the Beginning of Summer party, because haha am not navigating the T all the way to Melrose with a broken foot.

Otherwise things are good - I am SO EXCITED about some of the poems we've gotten at Liminality, it's been good to see K again, and Elayna's partner Aza is visiting. And I had a great meeting with my doctor today about my whole genome sequencing, which I am seriously geeking out about.

I have my final Pi-Con schedule, which I'll post tomorrow, and my preliminary Readercon schedule.

I still don't have a pony. Which is really an appalling oversight on Adam's part, I think.

Many more things, but my brain is tired. Tomorrow. *nod*
Originally posted by cafenowhere at You Will Be Visited by Three Spirits: Predators Past, Present, and...?
TW for discussion of child abuse, rape

More and more details are emerging from the deeply sad and disgusting history of Marion Zimmer Bradley and (her husband) Walter Breen's abuse of children. By and large, these are not new facts. This is history: personal, legal, and fandom history. I am not going to link to the proof. Suffice to say, legal depositions and plenty of damning accounts are available online, many using the keyword "Breendoggle."

I would really like fandom to stop using that word. Modifying "boondoggle" in this way suggests that the arguments about what to do about MZB and Breen were useless wastes of time and energy. It minimizes the horror of how fandom failed to excise a pernicious predator, how people colluded to protect perpetrators rather than victims, how survivors were shamed, gaslit, and silenced, and how the truth was allowed to sink out of sight and out of mind.

There's been a critical generation gap. Fans who knew of MZB and Breen's crimes seem to have assumed the information was common knowledge. They stopped discussing it. They let sleeping dogs lie. Which means a swath of current fans and writers (including myself until about a month ago) were completely ignorant of what MZB and her husband had done, what Breen was convicted of. No doubt it would be unpleasant and even painful to constantly footnote every mention of MZB's writing with "and she abused her children and enabled her husband to rape children." But there must be other ways to pass this information on to future fans. I mean, many of us are writers. Communication is one facet of our jobs.

The MZB/Breen situation feels disturbingly familiar to those of us now fighting for harassment policies and their enforcement. We have our own "missing stairs" or "open secrets." We know we have serial harassers attending SF conventions, and we warn our friends about those problem attendees. But not everyone is going to hear these warnings through the grapevine, just as many of us were left in the dark about MZB/Breen. And it's not as if we don't have sufficient evidence or proof of the problem. Instead, we have con committees that are fearful of litigation.

"...while we could of course cancel [their] membership, if we did so without telling fandom why, there would be a big row. And if we told why, [they] would sue for slander and libel and we didn't have $75,000.00.

It was pointed out that truth is a defense in a case like this. So it is, but [they] would probably sue anyway. And even though we have all sorts of evidence establishing the main facts, if not each individual instance, we'd still be out several hundred dollars in lawyer's fees even after we'd won the case."

That's from a 1963 newsletter about Walter Breen. In response to my "WisCon Wins and Fails" post, I heard almost the exact same reasoning from a WisCon volunteer co-coordinator. Fifty-some years later, and we are still (supposedly) immobilized by the fear that a serial predator will sue.

How many times have jackasses threatened to sue but never followed through?
If the NBA can ban an owner for life because of racist statements, why can't a con ban a known harasser?
The SFF community contributed over $53,000 to the "Women Destroy Science Fiction All Genres!" Kickstarter. Do you really think, if a con volunteer got sued for enforcing the harassment policy, we'd let them go broke?

We need to fix our missing stairs now. I can't bear the thought of, twenty years from now, younger writers and fans "discovering" their literary heroes are moral scumbags. Or that the same creepers bothering them at cons were known to be problems even back in my day. We in the SFF community pride ourselves on envisioning grand, complex futures. We need to develop longer memories. Otherwise, our future will be a shameful repetition of the past. The MZB/Breen history reemerging now is a timely, if painful warning.

Originally posted by dsmoen at Marion Zimmer Bradley: It’s Worse Than I Knew

Trigger warning: child rape

Moira Greyland (MZB and Walter Breen’s daughter) has agreed to let me share her email.

This is really hard stuff to read, and I’ve just thrown up my lunch. I knew about none of this part of things until a few minutes ago.

Hello Deirdre.

It is a lot worse than that.

The first time she molested me, I was three. The last time, I was twelve, and able to walk away.

I put Walter in jail for molesting one boy. I had tried to intervene when I was 13 by telling Mother and Lisa, and they just moved him into his own apartment.

I had been living partially on couches since I was ten years old because of the out of control drugs, orgies, and constant flow of people in and out of our family “home.”

None of this should be news. Walter was a serial rapist with many, many, many victims (I named 22 to the cops) but Marion was far, far worse. She was cruel and violent, as well as completely out of her mind sexually. I am not her only victim, nor were her only victims girls.

I wish I had better news.

Moira Greyland.

Followed up with:

It should also be noted that Walter was convicted on 13 counts of PC 288 A, B, C, and D.

Oral sex was the least of anyone’s worries.

Link to the California Penal Code for context.

No. Words.

Originally published at You can comment here or there.

10th-Jun-2014 10:01 am - Phew!
So yesterday was:

* the foster care home study (went well! classes are in September)
* launching Liminality (submit, poets! we have a bunch of submissions already, but want more!)
* car repairs (needed new battery and something something oil gasket; also need more stuff done, but have to wait til we have more money)
* planning for Elayna's partner's visit
* planning for our Florida visit
* researching dog boarding options
* working on secret project #2
* finishing OITNB season 2

And more.

I hope today will be easier!

The plan for today is knitting, edits for a forthcoming story, and hopefully perfecting the story I finished on Sunday (thanks for the Writing Day, asakiyume! thanks for the ride, cucumberseed!) or getting more work done on one of the other stories I have in various stages of completion. I have to get those edits done today; I am most terribly behind. But last week did have several Lost Days in it, what with the sedated dental work and the ankle sprain. (Am off crutches, still splinted, trying to walk as little as possible.)

How's by you?
9th-Jun-2014 01:18 pm(no subject)
Announcement #1 of howevermany (I have some irons in the fire, I do):

ashlyme and I have started a poetry magazine! <3

It is called Liminality and the guidelines are here. Please do send us stuff. <3
6th-Jun-2014 10:08 am(no subject)
Knitting: Morticia
I haven't mentioned the Interstitial Arts Foundation's Indiegogo campaign here yet because I've been less bloggy, buuuut my special perk just came up!

For $150, I will write you a poem or flash fiction piece and tie it into a hand-knitted scarf, like this one.


Oooh. Ahhh.

If that's too rich for your blood, be advised that I have work in both of the chapbook rewards. That would run you $15.
6th-Jun-2014 09:37 am - Story release!
"The Angel of Fremont Street" and "Fortune" were always meant to reflect each other. Versions, shall we say, of the same characters, in a way that'll make sense when you read them.

But it's been difficult to show you "Fortune"! Because it was published in a very limited-edition anthology!

BUT NOW YOU CAN HAVE IT. With "The Angel of Fremont Street". In handy e-book form.

Packaged as "The Selves We Leave Behind", my Vegas duology is now available from Upper Rubber Boot Press.

So get on that and make my day.
5th-Jun-2014 04:52 pm - PSA
I have sprained my ankle! That's annoying. I have an air splint and crutches. This is the first time I've had crutches since I was a teenager, I think, which shows how bad this was...

...could have been worse. Could have been a break. Could have been when the kid wasn't home from school to walk the dog and fetch me coffee.

But this is a PSA that my attendance at things for the next little while will be conditional upon rides to things, and I won't be at things that require a lot of standing and walking (no Cambridge River Festival this year, alas).
4th-Jun-2014 04:58 pm - Signal Boost needed, please
Originally posted by kythryne at Signal Boost needed, please

Dear Internet: I need a huge favor.

Wyrding Studios needs a massive signal boost, effective immediately.

Last month, my spouse unilaterally broke up with me after nearly 14 years of marriage. I am not going to discuss why here, or in any other public forum. For now, we are continuing to live together as co-parents and housemates, but that may have to change.

Some of you already know how I feel about my beloved house, art studio, and gardens. I have worked very hard to make my home safe space and sanctuary for myself and other artists. I am not going anywhere unless I have absolutely no other choice.

For nearly ten years, Wyrding Studios has been my sole source of income, in part because I live with multiple chronic illnesses that severely limit my ability to work outside the home. Even if I found a job that could accommodate my physical issues, it would pay considerably less and likely force me to permanently close WS.

I am asking for your help so that does not happen.

Wyrding Studios has always been a business driven primarily by repeat customers and word-of-mouth recommendations. I am so profoundly grateful to everyone who has come back year after year to buy more of my jewelry as my work evolved and changed, to everyone who has told their friends and family about my website, to everyone who has asked me to collaborate on projects or design custom pieces for special occasions.

Miles starts school full-time in the fall. I plan to spend the summer bringing WS back to financial self-sufficiency. I have a number of new projects and product lines planned for the next few months. I am working on improving my turnaround and response times, and just generally making as much of the best art that I possibly can, because, in the words of my mentor and colleague Elise Matthesen, art is a great goodness.

Here’s what you can do to help.

Start by signal boosting this post far and wide. Tell your friends, families, and co-workersabout my jewelry. Post links to items in the store to social media - Pinterest, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, whatever you use.

Tell them they can use coupon code SIGNALBOOST to take 10% off any order of $30 or more through August 30th. You can use it too if you want, any time you order between now and then. It's good on anything except subscriptions.

Most importantly, just tell people I'm here. Tell people I've been here for a long time, and I'm not going anywhere for a long time, and that I would love to make jewelry for them. Because that's true. I want to keep making art, even out of this darkness.

4th-Jun-2014 07:32 am(no subject)
And since? Yeah. Busybusy.

* The day after Wiscon, I took a bus out to Vermont for a Frank Turner concert! Had a wonderful time with Jake, Aimee, and Toby. <3 This was absolutely the right choice; I got to effect a slow re-entry into everyday life. Plus. Frank Turner. And I got my Dobra Tea, which is my traditional last act at Wiscon; the Dobra in Madison closed down, but there's one in Burlington!

* Elayna got all her transfer-student stuff done!

* Friday and Saturday = plotting and planning with Mat and, later, Adam. You'll see some of the results of that soon. :) This isn't just my Year of Being Brave - it's my year of figuring out what I really want and making it happen.

* Saturday night was a great party, which meant Sunday was largely recovery!

* Monday was mostly cleaning up for tomorrow's foster care home visit.

* Yesterday was try #2 with sedated dentistry - and it worked! Tripled the sedative. I was pretty much floating in and out during the procedure. Which apparently gets done in two parts; they'll call me today to schedule part 2. I am very happy that I got through that without my PTSD being triggered. SO happy. Being utterly exhausted in my brain and body all day and night was annoying, but worth it.

Today Elayna's going to Maeve's and I'll have some writing time; tomorrow is the home visit, an orthopedist appointment, and dinner with a friend from out of town. And now you are caught up.

At least as much as you can be. Because spoilers.
4th-Jun-2014 07:11 am(no subject)
My usual refrain: I have been busy, busy, busy. At this rate I'll never have an actual comprehensive Wiscon recap up! So I'll do a less-comprehensive one.

I hate going to things alone. It's a minor social anxiety thing. I don't need to be joined at the hip with someone, but I do much better if I have a person as a social anchor. Add to that that this Wiscon was the anniversary of some Bad Shit in my life, and a big part of the beginning of what became Bad Shit. (Fun fact: relationship with Michael & Lynne would not have continued past Wiscon if Judah hadn't done everything he did the Sunday/Monday of last Wiscon and the everything the following week. The fucked-up M/L dynamic was super-clear as soon as I was with them in person, and Sunday night M pulled a "jesus christ it's a lion get in the car", but things with J exploded and I had no bandwidth and he dove in and took everything over and I let him because I was shattered. (He told me later that he knew J. was emotionally abusive and that J/me would only last about another 6-9 months. He didn't give even the vaguest hint of that awareness when he was wooing me. Which makes me Think.))

(And see, this is a thing. This is a thing that's kept me from writing about my life lately, because a lot of it has been seeing toxic M/L stuff with clear eyes, and I do not want to bombard the reader with "and also this". But in talking about last Wiscon being bad, M's behavior that Sunday night had as much to do with it as J's. And even before Sunday, my chatlogs with J show a bit of "how do I get out of this M/L thing, I'll figure it out after con because I'm so freaking busy just let me get through this.")

The last M/L thing, and the only one that's nonparenthetical for Reasons, is that L's entire intent with the harassment-via-judicial-system she tried to pull earlier this year was to bar me from going to cons in general and Wiscon in particular. I spent over $2,000 fighting that thing in order to be able to freely practice my damn career. So yes, Social Anxiety Penguin or not, I was damn well going to Wiscon.

So how did it go?

Thursday was hard. I always get in a day early, because I work the IAF's table at the Gathering Friday early afternoon and don't want to risk getting in too late, and because travelling can be physically painful for me and I need a day for my body to adjust. But not that many people are around. I went to get my groceries, passed places that reminded me of Judah (who'd accompanied me in 2012), got mopey. Got worried.

What helped? Karaoke!

I am not a good singer. :) I'd been to the pre-Wiscon karaoke before, but never sang. But this is my Year of Being Brave! And so.

In from of a bunch of lovely Wisconners and some unexpectedly supportive townies: "Fever" and "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)".

And I'm so glad I did.

Saying "fuck it" and getting up and singing - without any social anchor - set the tone for my whole weekend. Set my levels at "yes, I can do this, I can do anything."

And I did.

I'm not going to recap my whole weekend because it will look like a whole bunch of name-dropping. Another characteristic of this Wiscon? Realizing that this past year had cost me no one who mattered (and very few people at that; those who thought they'd cost me more have a distorted view of the world and community, it seems) and gained me a lot of friends and allies. New friends were made this year, and existing friendships strengthened. Our reading was awesome (and had unintentional horror/movie themes!), I'm pretty sure I did well on my panels (and had fun doing them)... the big thing to get used to was not taking other people's schedules into account! Last year M/L, year before J, year before I was rooming with S00j & co... and at local cons I'm always with Adam and usually with Elayna. The flexibility was unnerving! But I adjusted. And only having to deal with my own schedule meant that when friends needed breaks, I could help. I was able to stop by the art show and the dealer's room a few times. I wandered off and discovered new restaurants. I got to spend time with almost everybody... not enough time, of course. Never enough time.

This is the first year I really danced at the Floomp (formerly Genderfloomp).

I know you've seen me on the floor before, fellow Wiscon people. But that was me-in-pain and also me-minding-people; year before last, I was managing Judah. Last year, I was managing Judah from afar and then Michael pulled the thing that would've been the last straw, so I was barely at the Floomp at all.

This year, I've gotten so much of my body back. Physical therapy is a godsend. So, combination of two factors:

1. I did not have to keep track of/help/manage/do anydamnthing for a partner who was invested in not letting go and having fun.
2. I was physically capable of dancing. Of really dancing. In a way I hadn't been in years.

Plus the "I don't give a fuck if I look silly I'M DOING THE THING" that I picked up on Thursday and didn't put down the entire con. Still haven't put down.

So I danced my ass off. With a variety of wonderful people. And nudged Patty into entering the dance contest as my champion, WHICH SHE WON. And she called me her prom queen. <3 I'd gotten an amazing prom-dress-under-the-sea confection at the clothing swap and had stick-on rhinestones and my hair was everywhere and I had a damn blast.

And that was my Wiscon, or bits of it. That's the part that's not namedroppy or getting into Other People's Stuff or straight-up panel recaps. For me, this Wiscon was about freedom. It was about being brave. It was about being who I want to be - that thread of deliberate choice that's been the theme of this year.

And yeah, a project came out of it. I'm working on it. :)

So that's a bit about Wiscon, because I've been way behind. It was nervous-making to go, but I went, and I thrived, and it was probably my best Wiscon ever, y'all.
29th-May-2014 01:06 pm(no subject)
Home from Wiscon, at which I had an excellent and illuminating time! Bounced straight to Burlington, VT for an overnight trip. I will recap all the things, but for now, I am home for the first time in a week, decompressing, and getting stuff done.

Hi. :)
20th-May-2014 12:36 pm(no subject)
PSA! - by Zarhooie
I will be out of pocket for much of the next week!

Thursday -> Monday: Wiscon
Tuesday -> Wednesday: Burlington, VT
Thursday: Elayna's transfer student day at Framingham

Expect delays in responses. If you're going to be at Wiscon, I would love to hang out with you; other than Saturday night's poetry dinner, I have yet to make meal plans. Likewise if you're in BTV, I'd love to have dinner with you on Tuesday!
19th-May-2014 02:30 pm - Just because you can
My year has had themes.

Started off going to the geneticist, who sent me to the orthopedist, who sent me to the physical therapist, and each of them noted my hypermobility and said variations on the same thing: "Just because you can doesn't mean you should."

So a big part of my year so far has been re-learning movement. Just because I can wrap my foot around the opposite ankle when my legs are crossed doesn't mean I should. Just because I can pop my hip out, hyperextend my elbow, et cetera - and most of these have become my body's natural movements and positions, because I find pressure and constriction comforting. So wrapping my legs together like that, pulling my body into positions that aren't the best for me - these are comfort things. I have had to be aware of how I'm sitting, standing, walking, every time. Every minute. I have been learning how to stop before I hurt myself.

The problem, of course, is that there's a lack of immediate feedback. I don't know at the time that I'm hurting my body. That shows up later, in ways that seem unrelated. I had not been pushing my body To The Pain. I had been following my reflexes, and the pain came later.

So. Learning how far is too far.

I started to write a novel this year. It's a damn good novel. A thriller. I'd talked it out with Michael last year (mostly his end was the "yes, and" of improv). In the wake of that broken relationship, I said fuck everything, I'm writing this.

And I did. I got to the critical tricky halfway point, I pivoted the book -

And I stopped.

Like I've said, this year has themes, and one of them has been that I want to make choices instead of just react. I want to take the time to think things through and do what's best for me. I want to be my best self. I want to aim higher, to make sure my choices are in line with the person I am and the person I want to be. asim asked me about that early on, and the first answer I had was "I want to choose kindness."

A friend posted elsenet recently about our lives showing the stories we tell about ourselves. This is a thing I've been thinking of, too. What is the story of you?

And in this sense, relationships are collaborative stories.

The story of me and Michael established itself early, and it wasn't a healthy one. There are streaks of it through this novel like streaks of infection. The me I was with him was not a healthy me. I... can talk about that forever, but now's not the time.

The first thing ashlyme told me about myself - because sometimes you need to put down the mirror, let someone describe you to yourself, because you don't see you clearly anymore, you don't know what you look like from the outside - the first thing he told me about myself was that I was brave.

Brave. Kind. Whimsical. Joyful.

I had forgotten so many of these things last year. They're still me. They're still there.

I wanted to finish the novel because I wanted to finish a novel. I never have, and I want to develop a habit of completion.

But where I am, in the back half of the novel, is in a place I don't want to be.

It's a damn good novel. But it's mean.

And I don't want to be mean.

Just because I can write this novel doesn't mean I should.

I've dissected it way more than that, of course. Buy me a drink at Wiscon and I'll tell you all about it. I fussed about this decision for weeks. And I've decided to set it down for now. (Since doing so, I've also realized how I can make it even better when I come back to it.)

What is the story of me?

What is the story of me + Elayna, me + Adam, me + Mat? What is the story of how I choose to move through the world? I've been figuring out what's best for my body. What's best for my mind? What's best for my heart?

As Mat and I have been talking, we've been sharing all our stories. Our life stories, yes, but also our fiction. And the thing I keep coming back to, with him, is Cicatrix.

I set it aside for a good reason. It's a book about recovery from sexual violence, and I had just been raped.

I dropped it like a hot potato for a bad reason, too. I did, fragile and trying, write one chapter of it post-Judah. Which I showed to Michael. Who eviscerated it. "People don't talk like that," he said regarding the stylized dialogue that dovetailed with the stylized text as a whole. And I stopped. Because there was no other way to write it, and therefore it was, if wrong, unfixable.

In the almost-year since, I have seen huge fanbases pop up for work in which characters damn well do talk like that. True Detective. Hannibal. Among others.

And, holding my breath, I sent it to Mat. After realizing that yes, people do talk like that - Mat and I talk like that. I sent it to him after phrases in that very conversation popped up in our conversations. From him.

Well, he thinks it works. And so do I.

What's the story of me? What is that story I need? What is the story that I need to tell?

The story of fighting one's way back to the light. Of choosing the light.

So yeah. I'm ready to go back to Cicatrix.

I'm working on some short fiction first, when I have time. (And with Elayna home, what I need more than anything is time. Anyone know of free secluded office space I can use?) Some really interesting stuff is coming out there, too.

So that's where the writing is. There are new poems, too. And three stories coming out of me simultaneously. And so much of the healing process of Cicatrix whispering around the edges.

This is good.
17th-May-2014 08:58 pm(no subject)
...just a brief note to say that I'm doing much better, thanks. <3 Assisted by actually getting some writing time today and diving into a new story I'm excited about...
15th-May-2014 12:00 pm - Still alive.
Wrote and deleted a BUNCH of stuff that can be summed up to: I am having a rough time. I am dealing with some buttons repeatedly being pushed. More writing, then deleting, because I'm not really currently able to discuss this. Clearly. Bad space. It was a year ago this week that everything started to fall to shit with Judah in high gear; the timing has something to do with my bad space, but there are other factors. This will pass. This will pass.

Really, really cannot do this right now.

But, good things: Got a new cat on Sunday, spontaneously; Mother's Day gift from my parents. She's a tuxie. Pics on FB. She's currently sequestered in the guest room; we're slowly introducing her to Bash (who she hissed at; no reaction from Bash, thankfully) and Nicky (who she seems more comfortable with, and who seems to adore her). Her shelter name is Pippin, but we always change the name. Still getting to know her.

Partners good. Writing needs a long thinky-thoughts post that I am not capable of right now. (Which doesn't mean not-good, just means complex.) Doing my best to continue daily at-home PT. Wiscon is next week. And that's where things are right now.
8th-May-2014 10:13 am(no subject)
One Person can Make a Difference
Hey y'all! I have a friend in the Bay Area who's in the process of disengaging from an abusive relationship. They need assistance getting emotional, therapeutic, and financial support, and a sympathetic doctor. Does anyone know what resources are available out there? The person wishes to stay anonymous, but will see anything posted here.
5th-May-2014 07:09 am - Wiscon Schedule!
I'm arriving on Thursday and leaving on Monday (during Sign-Out). Yes, I'll be at Geekeoke! If you are going to Wiscon I do want to hang out with you. Let's work something out. Also I clearly need someone to take a shift at the IAF table at the Gathering!

1:00-3:45: Coffee, Tea, and Subversion! Enjoy coffee, tea, ice water, and/or cookies! Members of the Interstitial Arts Foundation serve up refreshments and a bit of chat about the interstitial arts and the work of the Foundation.

2:30-3:45: Disability on TV: Auggie Anderson on Covert Affairs is blind, Carrie Mathison on Homeland has bipolar disorder, there are several regular and recurring Deaf and Hard of Hearing actors playing Deaf characters on Switched at Birth, Michael J. Fox is now playing a character who also has Parkinson's on a sitcom named after himself, Cracked is a show about a mentally ill police officer who teams up with a psychiatrist to solve crimes with a psychiatric component to them, and last summer Sundance gave us a second season of a documentary show called Push Girls about four female wheelchair users. Let's talk about depictions of disability on TV, the difference between crip drag and when an actor with disability or Deaf actor gets the role, and instances of ableism in our shows. With Jim Leinweber, sophy, Sasha_Feather, and S.E. Smith.

4:00-5:15: Women Destroy Science Fiction—Science Fiction Changes the World: In response to yet another ill-conceived article bemoaning diversity is destroying what is science-fictiony in science fiction Lightspeed Magazine responded with a woman-themed issue. Every time you turn on the internet there seems to be a new complaint about too many women and people of color in the SFF community. If this is backlash, now may be the best time for writers to explore non-dominant narratives and radically reimagine the future. What are ways to encourage more work by all POC and other women? Some ideas have been: pressuring magazine editors to be more inclusive, small presses such as Aqueduct catering to the market for these works, the increasing ease and improved reputation of self-publishing. What works, what doesn't? And let's put together a booklist of what we should BUY. [Shira's note: Yes, I will be specifically addressing how calls for women do not solve the problem as they exclude nonbinary people.] With Kimberley Long-Ewing, Megan Arkenberg, and vylar_kaftan.

9:00-10:15: Spindles and Spitfire: Join us for a reading packed full of sinister whimsy, folkloric sensibilities, dark humor, and SNACKS! Lisa Bradley dances with the skeletons in her closet. Gwynne Garfinkle is a red headed hellion who will capture your heart and put it in a jar above her writing desk. Shira Lipkin has returned from the castle beyond the goblin city. She brought you a present. Patty Templeton does not appreciate when ghosts keep her up at night. [Shira's note: Yes, it's late. It'll be worth it. Do this, then hit the parties with us!]

10:00-11:15: What’s in a Name? Language and Naming in Speculative Fiction: The names of your characters and the language(s) that they speak and abide in can bring layers of cultural specificity to the genre. Which stories do this well? How was naming and non-English language used to convey the culture of the fictional environment? How does it affect your reading of the text? If the race/culture does not reflect your own does it affect your ability to empathize? With Kimberley Long-Ewing, Mia Coleman, Sally Wiener Grotta, and Alberto Yáñez.

2:30-3:45: A Very Special Disability Panel Redux: Like Not Another Fucking Race Panel, but with disability, and I'm moderating! With S.E. Smith, Sasha_feather, Shayla Dunn, and Carlie Forsythe.

Nothing. Wanna get lunch?

10:00-11:15: Mecha Tropes and the Subversion Thereof: In a year where the Hugo-nominated Pacific Rim arguably brought mechas into the mainstream, what are our favorite and least favorite mecha tropes? And what are series that take on these tropes, either with full enthusiasm or with interesting twists? Are intensely emotional plots in the very DNA of mecha stories, or are they secondary? Will audiences ever tire of giant robots punching monsters in the face? With Susan Raminrez, Anonymous, Oyceter, and Andrea Horbinski.
5th-May-2014 06:51 am(no subject)
"How are you doing?" I was asked last night, and my reply was "I am sufficiently busy that "busy" is the most accurate descriptor of how I'm doing."

Among other things, I copyedited six manuscripts in five weeks, got to and past the halfway point on the novel, did a bunch of work for a friend's startup, kept up with the physical therapy, and coached my daughter through the end of her first year of college (which she was having a great deal of difficulty with). While balancing a bunch of other things. I didn't often feel overloaded, but I definitely felt fully loaded!

I am behind on everything and don't know how y'all are doing. So tell me. How are you doing?

Elayna's home for the summer now, so the schedule I established is pretty null and void. We took the weekend as destressing time, but today she and I need to talk about how this is going to work and set about finding her a job.

I already know that I'm going to be doing a bit less, going forward, knowing how I was teetering on the edge of overload a lot. I need to stop saying yes to every copyediting gig; we need the money, but also I need to be working on my own writing. I'm not going to do the next round of the knitting competition because I essentially need to have fewer things that have a hard deadline; that, and it's restrictive. I have things I've been wanting to knit for myself, and now for my baby niece and for ashlyme. And I've taken The Sweater Eternal (Elayna's Still Light Tunic) out to work on again. Five more inches of stockinette in the round, ribbed hem, then sleeves and pockets...

I had my last physical therapy appointment. I'm approved for one more, but we're saving that for if I need to upgrade my exercises or if something goes wrong. We hit the point where I could keep up on the PT on my own. I will still have to do the exercises every day forever, but I'll do it, because they make a tangible difference.

*stretch* Hello, May. Let's figure out how you're going to go.
25th-Apr-2014 09:36 pm(no subject)
We&#39;re good. Yes we are.
Oh and I totally forgot to mention that I hit and passed the halfway point on the novel! That has been a lot of my busy. :)

And no, it won't be done by the end of April, but the MAPP training that we thought would start in late April will now be starting in June, so yay. :)
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