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Mushroom Kingdom
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I'm probably going to disappear down the rabbit-hole of visiting family and holiday madness for the next week, so here's possibly-my-last-entry until after Xmas (though if we manage to get the latest River pictures up on Flickr, I'll post a link quicklike).

The night before last River was a ravenous unsleeping thing. Not screamy, particularly, just frequently hungry and fussy if we put him down. (He was perfectly happy to be held, especially if the holder was bouncing him around, but sleeping while bouncing a baby is tricky, and probably requires some specialized apparatus.) That was rough. Last night, however, he was a whole different baby -- he slept for five hours in a row, and was very sweet when he woke up wanting to eat, too. I'm pretty well rested today, Heather's pretty well rested -- it's incredible! The world seems brighter! (Even though it's raining like a very rainy thing.) It won' t last, but this kind of reprieve gives me strength for the next all-nighter.

River's doing great. He's more and more vocal every day, and has engaged in some real full-on baby babble. He talks to his bottle and to the mobile over the changing table, which he adores; I think it's practically his first friend. He's also moving around the crib quite a lot, though the mechanism is unclear to me -- we'll put him on his back one way, and when we check him later, he'll be laying on his back perpendicular to his original position! While fully swaddled! Either he's telekinetic, precocious at rolling, or just damn good at sleep-wiggling.

Every morning I pick him up and say, "Hello, River! Good morning! What a good morning it is!" I will make him into a morning person (like me, unlike Heather)!

I signed a giant pile of contracts over the weekend and put them in the mail, so the [redacted] deal looks like it's pretty much definitely happening, though I still can't announce particulars. (The company I'm making the deal with wants to issue their own press release first, which will happen I dunno when.) I fear all these little mentions over the past months have built this up to seem bigger than it is -- I didn't expect to have to keep it under wraps for this long. Suffice to say, it's nice, and neat, and it'll single-handedly wipe out my remaining credit card debt, but it's not life-changing or earth-shaking or anything.

Otherwise I'm just cranking away at Grift Sense. (Turns out there's a mystery novel called Grift Sense that came out a few years ago -- from the same conglom that publishes me, actually -- which is unfortunate. I may change the title. "Grift Know" is another phrase that means the same thing, but it just doesn't have the right ring.) I'm about 20,000 words in, and getting toward the dreaded middle. I really need to make an outline. There are pretty much three plot threads: about the Big Con (where Rondeau is the viewpoint character), about Bradley Bowman's ongoing apprenticeship (with Marla and Bradley switching off viewpoints), and about the crazy fungus magician Vaillant (with his perpetually-hallucinating slave/factotum as a very odd viewpoint character). Now, all three plots will trainwreck together nicely later on, but I'm having a bitch of a time juggling them now, giving them each enough weight, handling pacing and suspense, etc. I think I need to outline each plot thread separately, then figure out how to mesh them together in order to make all the dominos fall properly. It's a challenge -- the kind of challenge I love! -- but tough to do currently, with a new baby in the house and a distinct lack of sleep. But I'll manage. It's not due for another (eep) four months and change...

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