December 31, 2003
Thanks to my invite code coupon and a little help from
Oh yeah. Happy New Year, y'all. I'm having a quiet one at home, and for once not feeling loser-ish at all for doing so. I must be getting old. :)
December 27, 2003
Get me, Miss Talkative tonight.
If I were going to make any New Year's resolutions, they would be to read more (I read fewer books this year than last year) and to get off my ass about writing again. After January 1st, the submission train will once again leave the station. Time to start addressing envelopes and emails again, damn it.
And also? Rewrite the damn novel already so I can go on to the next one.
I realized I hadn't posted
I realized I hadn't posted about Christmas yet. I won't go on about it, but in short, it was the most perfect Christmas I've had in years. Right down to waking up to fluffy white snow on Christmas morning. The gifts were not extravagant, but they were just the right things. (Proof that I am aging: I'm enjoying my fuzzy blue slippers almost more than my copies of Pirates of the Caribbean and King's Wolves of the Calla. Proof that my mother is psychic: I got copies of POTC and Wolves--and my mother didn't even know I had an Amazon.com wishlist.) Dinner with the family consisted of different family members than years past, but they are family members that I'm glad to get to know. In short, Christmas found me content and happy.
This weekend has been remarkably lazy so far. The laziness is partly illness-induced, I think. We don't have the flu, but something knocked this household down yesterday and today. It's all good though. It was nice (aside from various physical symptoms which are better left undescribed) to sit around and read and watch movies and cross-stitch for two days.
I finished reading Wolves of the Calla this afternoon. I was sad to see it end, sadder still to know that the series is near an end, and saddest of all to see a sort of swan song within the book. It feels like King is saying goodbye to his characters and his readers. But what a goodbye. The last couple pages had me alternately fidgeting with tension and grinning like a nut. Now I want desperately to get my hands on the revised editions of the first four books so I can see what changed.
So how're y'all? :)
December 24, 2003
On the one night of
On the one night of the year when I can feel the aura of quiet spirituality in the air, the breathless hush of waiting--waiting for a miracle, for a dream come true, for magic--I am reminded just how blessed I really am. I am deeply and profoundly grateful to be here on this Christmas Eve.
My life may not have gone quite the way I'd planned for it, and even now I may not be everything I'd like to be, but I'm here, and things are better than they've been in years. It took a movie to remind me--and shame on me for that--of a simple truth: No one is a failure who has friends.
I'm grateful to be here. I'm doubly grateful that each and every one of you is here. Merry Christmas. I love you all.
December 22, 2003
I was up until nearly
I was up until nearly 4am. Dunno why. Just sat around staring blankly at one screen or another. Then I woke up at 8:30. I would like nothing better than to go back to bed, but if I do, I'll sleep all afternoon, then will be up until 4 again and the cycle will start all over again. So I try to stay awake. I have a little last minute Christmas shopping to do, but I'm not sure I'll make it out of the house.
I think more caffeine is in order.
I had to laugh at
I had to laugh at this, stolen from IMDB's ROTK message board:
"The point of the movie is: Gay couple saves the world. Straight couple inherits it."
Wrong, but funny. :)
December 21, 2003
Various pictures, and a weekend report
My weekend was, in a word, marvelous. Saturday was the long-awaited LOTR marathon at my house. Due to various other commitments (like holidays, the flu, etc.) it ended up being just Dawn and Jason and I watching Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers. Mer, Julie, and Eric met us at the theatre for Return of the King. Watching them back to back was something amazing. I can't rationally analyze the moviegoing experience. Aside from making me cry my eyes out, ROTK made me feel... exalted somehow. Cheesy, but there you go.
Tonight I was watching TV--I've been on a National Geographic kick lately--and the show was a wildlife program about wolves. Then I noticed I wasn't the only one interested in watching the wolves chase the elk,
Everyone else is doing it...
1. What did you do in 2003 that you'd never done before?
I'm not proud of this one: I went so far as to buy OTC sleeping pills while considering suicide.
2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Haven't made any in years. Nobody ever keeps them, so what's the point?
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
I started to say no, then remembered baby Jesse. So yeah. Joelle, from my 7th Sea group. We're not super close, but she's a friend.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Yes and no. My aunt Hazel died. We weren't terribly close, but I was very fond of her.
5. What countries did you visit?
Christ. I don't think I even traveled out of the state this year. That's just wrong.
6. What would you like to have in 2004 that you lacked in 2003?
Money, which will probably require the other thing I lacked this year: a full time job.
7. What date from 2003 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
August 14th, the blackout.
December 17th, because I am the biggest geek in the world.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
While most people wouldn't consider it an achievement, I think moving in with my mom is mine. It's really given me a chance to fix a lot of the things that were going desperately, painfully wrong in my life. Plus, we've gotten to know each other, which has been fantastic.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Not being able to stay in school. Not finishing school is the single most frustrating aspect of my life at times.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Depression ruled me from about March to June. Also, I recently did something to the bones and/or tendons in the top of my left foot that's made me gimpy. :P
11. What was the best thing you bought?
My MP3 player.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My mom's. Leaving my stepfather was hard for her, but I think it was a good thing for her. She seems much happier now.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Aside from my government's, my ex-stepfather's.
14. Where did most of your money go?
Survival. Movies. With my state of mind during the spring, the two were often interchangeable.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Do I even need to answer this question? If you don't know, you haven't been paying attention to me. (Psst. There's a hint in answer #7.)
16. What song will always remind you of 2003?
"Bring Me to Life", Evanescence
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. Happier or sadder? So much happier.
ii. Thinner or fatter? Who knows? Who cares?
iii. Richer or poorer? Poorer.
18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Living, instead of just existing. Writing.
19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Crying. Being depressed.
20. How will you be spending Christmas?
With various members of my family, over at my aunt Vera's house.
22. Did you fall in love in 2003?
Yes, just enough to keep some of my sanity. Just enough to keep me alive.
23. How many one-night stands?
24. What was your favorite TV program?
Buffy, Law and Order, 24, South Park
25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
No, not really.
26. What was the best book you read?
Oh, toooough question. I can give you four. Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, Renni Browne and Dave King. A Game of Thrones, George R. R. Martin. Beloved, Toni Morrison. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Michael Chabon.
27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Either Evanescence, or bluegrass, particularly Nickel Creek.
28. What did you want and get?
A real home.
30. What was your favorite film of this year?
Well, up until December 17th, it was Pirates of the Carribean. ;) So I suppose technically speaking, PotC had more of my love this year, but Return of the King has all of my love now.
31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
31, and I had to go to my journal archives to remember what I did. I went and saw The Hulk and took myself out to lunch.
32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2003?
"If you don't wear clothes outside, you will freeze and/or you will get arrested."
34. What kept you sane?
I wasn't sane for a good part of the year, but family and friends, new and old, kept me alive when they couldn't keep me sane.
35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Viggo Mortensen, Johnny Depp, Sean Astin.
36. What political issue stirred you the most?
The war in Iraq, and the constant media blitz decrying obesity as the worst and most immoral health crisis in the entire history of the world, just managing to edge past the Black Plague in terms of destructive capacity.
37. Who did you miss?
Wicked Ink, en masse.
38. Who was the best new person you met?
39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2003:
Going home does not always mean going backwards.
40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
I can't think of any, weirdly.
December 18, 2003
I guess I really wasn't
I guess I really wasn't kidding about the "exhausted" icon yesterday. I fell asleep shortly after posting, bailed on Write Club, and dozed most of the evening. I woke up enough to watch the Angel rerun, then back to bed.
I've shamelessly spent the morning reading ROTK reviews. It's interesting. Movie critics typically get to spend so much time trashing fantasy and sci-fi movies (because they're often so bad) that when a fantasy movie comes along, obviously made with a lot of thought and energy, they don't know how to react. (The exception to this would be any sort of fantasy movie that could be construed as being a kids' movie, a la Harry Potter. If it's a kids' movie, the critics are free to love it unabashedly.)
There are two possible reactions, it seems. Embrace their inner geek and love the movie, or love it and qualify that love with endless asides, like in Roger Ebert's otherwise glowing review: "The story is just a little too silly to carry the emotional weight of a masterpiece." It's almost as if some of the stuffier critics are ashamed that they got caught up in such a thing. I'll bet Ebert cried at the end too, the big wimp.
Speaking of crying and being ashamed, I really have to 'fess up. I didn't just weep at the end of ROTK. I was about a step away from grabbing the stranger next to me and covering her shoulder with snot and tears. It was only through the force of my will that I wasn't sobbing loud enough for the whole theatre to hear me. (Those of you going to see it with me Saturday have been warned--now none of you will sit near me. ;))
Can't "carry the emotional weight of a masterpiece", my ass.
People, y'all need to see this so I can talk about it, already. ;)
December 17, 2003
Spoiler free, I promise.
In short and without spoilers:
Sam is my hero.
In addition, I'm glad I had the presence of mind to take Kleenex with me, because I spent the last 45 minutes of the movie weeping.
I'll post more in depth over the weekend, after others have had a chance to see it and I've seen it a second time.
December 15, 2003
Now I finally get it.
Now I finally get it. Brand lives (or lived, at least) in the world of Unknown Armies.
I envy him his facility with surrealism and his ability to make me laugh until I think I'm going to puke. If you read his LJ, you've seen some of the Lancaster stories. Here's the box set, plus a bonus story that's a corker (to steal from a Stephen King character, heehee).
"Corpses come in, hard drugs go out. It's like the Marines but not."
I received two bits of spam today (well, actually, the second one might not be spam, it's just weird) that I was compelled to share.
The subject line reads: "watch teens shave off their public hair then jackoff!"
I understand spammers and pornographers have limited spelling skills, but you'd think that 'pubic' would be a word they could get right.
Date: Mon, December 15, 2003 12:28 am
I just lost my husky after almost 14 ys a few months ago, mushing was something I
was always interested in. but at my size I wouldn't torment a dog that way :) how
long have you been doing it? where do you mush at? I only hear about it after the
season so I never know where to go to watch it.
I'm kinda baffled by that last one. In a big way.
December 09, 2003
Enormous congratulations to Mer, who
Enormous congratulations to Mer, who sold her first story. WOOHOO!
I should explain, I really haven't fallen off the face of the earth. I'm not spending as much time on the computer lately, because the editing I'm doing on The Exile's Daughter doesn't require a computer currently (so if I'm at the computer during the day, you know I'm not working!), and because of my rediscovered cross stitch addiction, which is taking up my evenings.
Things are good though. I'm almost ready for Christmas. No trace of Christmas blues so far this year, which is a very good thing. And Return of the King comes out in eight days, so the world is a happy place to be. ;)
December 03, 2003
It's a nifty meme
Swiped from Elizabeth Bear:
WHAT DO YOU CALL:
1. A body of water, smaller than a river, contained within relatively narrow banks?
2. The thing you push around the grocery store?
3. A metal container to carry a meal in?
4. The thing that you cook bacon and eggs in?
Frying pan or skillet.
5. The piece of furniture that seats three people?
Couch. Sometimes sofa.
6. The device on the outside of the house that carries rain off the roof?
7. The covered area outside a house where people sit in the evening?
Porch, if it's elevated. Patio if not.
8. Carbonated, sweetened, non-alcoholic beverages?
9. A flat, round breakfast food served with syrup?
10. A long sandwich designed to be a whole meal in itself?
11. The piece of clothing worn by men at the beach?
12. Shoes worn for sports?
13. Putting a room in order?
14. A flying insect that glows in the dark?
Firefly or lightning bug.
15. The little insect that curls up into a ball?
16. The children's playground equipment where one kid sits on one side and goes up while the other sits on the other side and goes down?
17. How do you eat your pizza?
By picking up the triangular pieces by hand.
18. What's it called when private citizens put up signs and sell their used stuff?
19. What's the evening meal?
Dinner. Dinner is also a really big noontime meal, in which case the later meal would be supper.
20. The thing under a house where the furnace and perhaps a rec room are?
December 01, 2003
I had such a lovely
I had such a lovely plan for today. I was going to finish reading The Exile's Daughter this morning, then go Christmas shopping this afternoon. I had it all worked out. I made up my Christmas list, down to which stores I needed to go to. It's going to be a very homemade Christmas due to financial issues, but there are a few store-bought gifts here and there. Also, I had a list of materials I need for my next cross stitch project.
So, after reading all morning, I got my lists together and went out to my car. When I turned the key, nothing. Not so much as a click. The battery is totally gone. I thought about calling AAA for a jump start, but had visions of myself stranded in Brighton if the battery didn't hold a charge. So instead, I'm going to wait until I have someone to come get me if that happens.
The good news is, I finished my first readthrough of my novel. I don't hate it, but it's nowhere near submittable form. And I'm not sure how to solve some of the problems I see--but at least I know what they are.
Hmm. The rest of the afternoon with nothing to do. Just how badly can one injure oneself while cross stitching...?
Your dominant hues are green and blue. You're have good intentions and want to people around you to get along. Even though you tend to battle with yourself, you are very good at solving other people's conflicts.
Your saturation level is high - you get into life and have a strong personality. Everyone you meet will either love you or hate you - either way, your goal is to get them to change the world with you. You are very hard working and don't have much patience for people without your initiative.
Your outlook on life is very bright. You are sunny and optimistic about life and others find it very encouraging, but remember to tone it down if you sense irritation.