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You never die and you never grow old
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Gong Xi Fa Cai, y'all! The New Year's fireworks in my neighborhood at midnight didn't wake my baby, so the year of the rat began auspiciously.

River is growth-spurting like mad. At about 8 o'clock last night he slurped down seven ounces of food and then went conk snooze sleep. Normally that's enough tummy-filling to let him sleep for six or eight or even nine hours. Instead, he woke up at 2:30 in the morning, ravenous, and sucked down another nine ounces in half an hour (then conked out for five hours straight, so I did end up getting ample sleep). Our baby is mighty! (Speaking of which, there's a new Flickr set covering his 13th week of life.


I don't believe in perpetual motion any more than I believe in leprechauns or Zeus, but any mention of a perpetual motion machine is a good excuse to go re-read one of my favorite Theodore Sturgeon stories, "Brownshoes" (which, if you don't have the collection where it first appeared, is handily available in the newest volume of the Complete Theodore Sturgeon, The Nail and the Oracle).


Yesterday was ludicrously productive. After spending almost two weeks without writing a single word on Not Grift Sense, I felt sufficiently recharged to dive back in. (I also finished reading the 40,000 words I'd already written, and had a sense of the whole book in my head again.) Heather took the kid away on a shopping trip in the afternoon so I could have a couple of hours to write in a row, and I did 4,300 words. Finished a chapter! Started another chapter! Furiously scribbled notes about the content of the next several scenes! I got my momentum back. Feels good.


Charles Tan is ripping through my back catalog. Here's his take on Hart & Boot & Other Stories.

The Anon Reader has reviewed a couple of my recent brief-and-plotless stories, "The River Boy" and "The Frozen One", and doesn' t much like 'em; he does note that the river in one story is called "The River" and the city in the other story is called "The City" and senses a disturbing trend. Given her sample size, it's hard to blame her for thinking I have a problem with genericness, but in both cases I was going for a certain mythic/provincial quality; when your people are the only people around, you just call yourselves "The People," that sort of thing. The reviewer does ask "Should a story be for the writer or for the readers? Who matters most?" It's an interesting question. I only write fiction for myself, honestly. It's not like I get paid enough to write fiction for any other reason. Of course, it's up to editors to decide if what I wrote for my own delight/amusement/obsession is likely to delight/amuse/obsess anyone else. But I don't try to guess what readers will like. That would only make me unhappy, and probably lead to some lousy stories anyway.


(The title of this entry is a line from the Modest Mouse song "I Came as a Rat" which seemed appropriate; this is how my mind works.)

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