Oct 9 2012

Columbus ate my yesterday


Columbus Day found the library closed, naturally.   So, given that the DayJob tasks were backed up due to some accounting disasters the previous week, what better time to put in a little catch-up overtime?

Bad idea!  A little turned into a lot, and I dragged out of there at 7PM, managed to get to the gym, and that was it.   I consider that day wasted, except for the gym.  During which I was reading Catherynne M. Valente’s The Girl Who Fell  Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There.    Time spent reading Valente is never wasted.    As I believe I have said before.

So, now I have to gain my momentum back.   Ack!

Meanwhile, back at the Library today:

What unsettled him was the growing realization that all through his life the claims of others had been laid not so much on his time as on his inner stores of regard and love.  His need, if he was finally to achieve the “great work”, was to find someone whom he could love without being loved in return to reach that apotheosis of love in which the Portuguese nun, or his Prodigal Son in Malte, had found  their happiness.

A Ringing Glass, the Life of Rainer Maria Rilke, by Donald Prater, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1986


“Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.” - Rilke

“Perhaps the same bird echoed through both of us yesterday, separate, in the evening.” - Rilke

Of Rilke, all I’ve read is Letters to a Young Poet and The Notebooks of Malte  Laurids Brigge.


Oct 5 2012

So, what’s with the quotes, anyway?


Think of it as: “Here I am. Settling down to write.   In an excellent place to write, i.e. the the library.    Look, proof!”

Because, of course I can’t actually talk about what I’m writing while I’m writing it. Because, I don’t do that.

And I will NOT be one of those writers who reports the daily word count, because:

a.)  Number of words does not reflect quality of sentences

b.) Number of words does not indicate how close to completion a work is, since a lot of writing is finding the right words by first writing the wrong ones and later seeing how very badly they suck, and then deleting them, replacing them with better, and possibly fewer, words.

c.) Number of words also does not indicate what part of the story I’ve reached, since I don’t always write the scenes sequentially.   Some of those words might be from the end of the book.  Or from the middle of the next book.

d.) Number of words in any particular writing session also does not reflect progress in the book as a whole, since solving a major plot issue might take days, during which almost no actual words get put on paper  — but without that solution all the words written subsequently would probably later reveal themselves as actually sucking very badly (see b., above).

e.) Although some writers work better when they think someone is checking up on them, I don’t.  The exact opposite happens.

My Muses (yes, I have two.  Well, three.   Well, two in collaboration most of the time, and another different one under other circumstances.  Three in total, but in practice two or another one at any particular time), actually kick back at the very idea of someone watching and keeping score.   They put on their hobnail boots and stomp around.  In my head.

And yet, I do want you to know: here I am.  Settling down to work.

In the library.

Look, proof!  Snagged from the YA biography shelves:

A teenager during the First World War

Later this woman became a famous writer of her time, but I have read nothing by her...


“February 12, 1922 – Madame Curie is visiting Buffalo, and Mother took me to hear her speak.  Jinny came, too.  Sitting in the crowded hall and listening to the small frail woman who had done so much for her country and the world, I felt renewed excitement about my own life — not to be great as an ambition, but great for something worthwhile.  ‘Not tomorrow, not next week, but today,’ Madame Curie had said at a time when the words had been a rule of life to her.   I took them to heart as my rule.”

-  My Diary My World by Elizabeth Yates, 1981, Westminster Press





Oct 2 2012

Still in the bio section, but now in the B’s


Not every book I pick up randomly is ancient…

Nice guitar, too, but if I were to go electric, I'd probably get a Gibson Les Paul.   'Cause.

eye-catching cover!

“Just before they were to open the doors for the spectators, four of the maintenance guys came out and roped off the armory with white window cord. They looped and tied it to each seat down the center aisle, making it an off-limits zone that neither coloreds nor whites could tread. They didn’t, we didn’t, no one else didn’t during the entire show although the armory was jam-packed with standing room sold as well. That six-foot-wide aisle, holding the choicest views in the place, stayed clear as a whistle.”

Chuck Berry, The Autobiography by Chuck Berry, Isalee Publishing Co., 1987

When I was a kid, I thought Chuck Berry was corny; when I was a teenager, I thought there was something there, probably; as an adult, I realized what I’d been missing.

Power in music; power from music.

Rock and roll didn't just invent itself.

Oct 1 2012



I have no random quote from a random book this time, as I am working at Starbucks tonight. I had to do some shopping in the direction of Starbucks and the gym, and doubling back and forth across town to the library and back in the middle of my scant available time just made no sense.

So, here I am.

a bit chilly, but hot coffee helps

At least I scored an outside table.

I have, in fact, quite a lot I want to blog about, having just had an amazing weekend about which I’m just dying to enthuse at length — but my choice tonight is to blog or to work on fiction, and I’m pretty sure I know which one you’d rather I do.

So, no quote, no blog post — so in compensation, here’s a picture of a cute baby turtle rescued from the DayJob parking lot.

I am not cute I am a snapper and I will KEEL YOU!

The parking lot had turned into a pond, adjacent to the actual pond, where the turtles live.