4 April 2002

Well, work on "Under the Masks" (for an upcoming anthology deadline) proceeds apace. The subplots occurred to me yesterday while I was running errands, so that's muuuuch better. I needed subplots and had them not, and now here they are. All for the best etc.

In case you've wondered about my new Godzilla boots, here they are:


Ahem. Right then. I've been breaking them in over the last several you know how long it's been since I had new footwear that tied? Very strange. Or since I had new footwear that existed around my ankles? Very, very strange. But comfortable, quite comfortable. I will be setting them aside while I get the appropriate socks washed, because they're not yet broken in enough to wear with inappropriate socks. But my oh my, does Ceej take care of me. These are good boots.

(The sales clerk there thought that "femmey" was a Minnesota word. As in "my mom won't like these boots, they're not femmey enough." People? Do you use this word from time to time? And are you from Minnesota? Let me know. Timprov thinks they're plenty femmey because "they're so little." No they're not! They're huge! Rrrahhhhh!)

In much femmier news, I got my bridesmaid's dress for Sarah's wedding last night. I also got the other bridesmaid's dress, but that's not particularly important (to anyone except me, Angela, and Sarah). The people at David's Bridal (no link for them!) in Milpitas were apathetic and only quasi-competent. But the dress fits as well as one could expect. Mark thought the top was a little loose in the waist, but they don't make tops that are tailored to my waist. (Well, they might, but not that are also tailored to my chest and shoulders.) And the skirt was none too tight, but also not a major deal. (And it's a 4, and I'm not sure that they make 2's, and even if they do, I'm not a 2. It's not that loose. It'll be fine.) The only thing is, the skirt is too long. It brushes the floor when I'm wearing my heels, and I don't think that's the length we're going for, so I have to find someone who can fix it for me. It's taffeta, so it has to be someone who knows what they're doing. Any recommendations? Anyone in the Bay Area know of a decent seamstress or tailor for not too amazingly much money?

I'll get pictures of this dress taken and posted for Sarah's benefit. Just not right this minute, as I haven't even brushed my teeth yet, much less showered and gotten presentable. It's on The List, though, so fear not.

I was thinking yesterday, I feel sorry for writers' loved ones. It's almost easier for writers' spouses, I think, because they get to see the whole process, so then if there's a book that's "to my spousal unit" and everyone in it is messed up beyond belief, the spousal unit doesn't sit around wondering, "Why me? Why was this book for me? This person was kind of a jerk in it...was that supposed to be me? Or the really neurotic whiny one? Is she trying to tell me I'm whiny?" Actually, mostly I'm just not sure about dedications.

Some of my short stories are written for or at people. "Irena's Roses" (Now! Available in Analog SF & Fact in bookstores near you! Sorry, couldn't resist) was for/at Slacker. No question. I knew when I was writing it that it was for him. And "Cassie's Deal" was inspired by Kev. Not many of my stories are like that, though. I could make a case for "The Handmade's Tale" being for Michelle -- it plays with some of the same identity questions as Atwood does, and it deals with rebellion from a parental mold. If someone had said to me, "Who is this story for?"...well, I would have come up with Michelle. More appropriate than anyone else, although not written just for her. And then there are stories like "Cornflake Girl" for which it would seem not only not intuitive, but perhaps actively a bad idea to dedicate them to someone. "When I think of corporate sellouts, I think of you...."

So would it be more touching to have a book dedicated to you, or would you spend time wondering why, exactly, it was? I noticed this with Kev, when I told him "Cassie's Deal" was for/inspired by him. He then got nervous about what, exactly, made it "his." And I don't know if he's just a silly Kev, or if he's a silly Kev who has a fairly typical reaction.

Ah well. I finished 'One Hell of a Gamble' yesterday and read The Boy With a Cart, which was an odd little out-of-print Christopher Fry play I picked up in Sausalito. It felt even more old-fashioned than Curtmantle, and also more T.S. Eliot-influenced. Interesting stuff, though. I started reading The Best American Science Writing 2000, which Mark found for relatively cheap in Sausalito. This is good stuff. This is reassuring stuff: the bad science writing we constantly get in the paper is not all that's out there. And in some sections, it's interesting enough to spark story ideas, which is always nice. I think we should look for later volumes, maybe even for a few earlier ones. I don't know how many of them James Gleick edited, but I'd be willing to find out if other editors knew what they were doing, too. When I finish that, I'll probably go on to Angry Young Spaceman or something of the sort. And work on the NTMB and on "Under the Masks" and cook and clean and mop the moose and feed the bear.

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