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Random Observations On My Day Off
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Hee hee hee. A divided national government again. That's nice. Subpoena power could be interesting. Though I bet, if you stop and listen close, you can hear the sound of files being shredded and hard drives being erased all over Washington DC...

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A new Secretary of Defense! Holy crap! Now Rumsfeld can become a full-time poet.

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Heather and I are doing a reading at Borderlands Books this Sunday at 3 p.m., for The Year's Best Fantasy. Stop by if you're local!

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Dude. Reviewing porn is easy. And actually quite fun. There are so many possible jokes for every review that I have to pick and choose carefully. It's more fun to review bad porn than good porn, of course, but that's always the case.

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We just got three Netflixes with the last season of Oz. Sigh. I'm happy to see it, sad to know I've almost watched all there is to see. I love a good over-the-top melodrama. (On a slightly tangential note, the first porn movie I reviewed was directed by and starred the actor who played biker convict Jazz Hoyt on Oz. He was also the bass player for Biohazard. See what I mean about having too many jokes to choose from?)

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I have several friends who are willing to tell me ways to kill people with their bare hands. Also ways to fight a guy with a knife and make him stab himself. I find this quite comforting. (Such information is very helpful for the novel-in-progress. There haven't been many fight scenes yet, but they're coming.)

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Wine can be a great aid to writing.

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Writing an open-ended series is interesting. I find myself seeding in all sorts of things that could be of use in later books. There are two minor characters in this novel who could easily become "big bad" antagonists at some point down the line. I'm also setting up little mysteries, offhand comments and hints at backstory that I can explore later in future books.

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Nobody important died in Rangergirl. Probably because I'm a big ol' soft-hearted wuss. Characters don't get off so easy in these new books. And Blood Engines is a walk in the park compared to the Dream novel.

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I was at the grocery store this afternoon, buying the usual array of booze and food and kitty litter, and the guy in front of me didn't speak English. He was buying two double-a batteries. He paid cash, and the cashier held onto the batteries and kept saying "Do you want a bag? Do you want a bag? DO YOU WANT A BAG?" in a progressively louder voice, while he stood there staring at her and holding his hand out, clearly waiting for her to hand him the batteries. Eventually he just reached out and took the batteries and left. It was a very Oakland moment. That store is good for Oakland moments. Once I saw a woman there yelling at her children, calling them "motherfuckers" and "sons of bitches" while they said "I'm sorry mama!" Ah, sweet unnoticed irony. Another time I saw a woman push her cart out in front of me, only to stop dead, blocking the doorway, to stare at the parking lot, where it was pouring rain. She said "I know it ain't rainin'!" It's all life's rich pageant, all the time around here.

On the flip side, we were driving home around the lake last night, and the fairy lights strung all along the path that circles the lake were reflected perfectly in the still water, the light doubled in its reflection, and it was simply one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen. And then we went to Arizmendi (the Oakland equivalent of the Cheeseboard, for you Berkeley folks) and got a fresh, amazingly delicious pizza for $15. Mmm. Oakland has its benefits. If I didn't have to drive here, ever, I'd probably adore it, but everytime I get in my car someone on the road tries to kill me, so it tends to color my perception of the place. Living behind a high school, on a street where insane teenagers and their frazzled parents drive with great speed and recklessness, doesn't help.

God, listen to me. I am getting old. Soon I'll be shaking my fist and yelling "Get off my lawn!" at neighborhood children and pets. If I had a lawn.



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