Dancing to Dirges

Depressing and happy things Tim says, sometimes while drunk

Friday, December 30, 2005

This is the way the year ends

I hope you all had a pleasant holiday. I'm off work until tuesday, so I'm not quite out of the season yet. Still kicking back. If you consider six hours at the computer formatting your novel kicking back.

So, yeah, the big thing that happened to me this week was hearing back from a certain agent. Seems that he liked the first three chapters of KDR, and has requested the balance of the manuscript. Like I said, it took me six hours to get it all formatted in manuscript form and then printed out, but it's done. Sitting on my desk right now. I'm going to get a copy made at kinko's tomorrow, then into ye mail it goes. It's a big step. Well, it's the next step. And considering I had pretty much written this novel off and was going to be concentrating on short stories for the next six months or so, it's nice to have this just kind of drop in out of the blue.

I promise I'll talk about something other than writing in the next day or two. But the last quarter of 2005 has been good to me, professionally speaking.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Meh bleh feh

Okay, so, I'm sure I'm completely alone in this, but the holidays are busy. I actually got up an hour early this morning to wrap xmas presents, because that's the last chance I'm going to have to do it before the day. Yay for me. Yay for presents.

I think the thing I find most draining about suburbia is the lack of isolation. I'm a quiet times kind of guy. Nothing better than sitting on my porch and not being able to hear other people, see other houses or...well, you get the idea. Be alone. I simply can't do that. The only way I manage any legitimate alone time is by finding crowds of absolute strangers, and that's just way not the same.

So I think I want to spend a month in a cabin. Maybe on an island somewhere. Splitting wood, empty my pen, fill my pen with ink, empty it again. That sounds nice.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

What I've been doing

With pretty much every spare moment:

The Dead Channel

Do enjoy, what?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Epic Struggles of the Suburban Loser.

I'm not what you'd call a hairy man. My eyebrows are starting to take on that wiry, british admiral "what what I say" quality, but that's about it. But I have this single, jet black hair on the back of my right hand. It's about a quarter-inch long. It's pretty much the only hair on either of my hands, other than a sort of peachy fuzziness that is only in evidence when I'm taking off bandages. It's driving me crazy. I only ever notice it at work, under these lovely lights. I have a knife, but I use it to cut boxes and packing straps, so it's not terribly sharp anymore. So every day I stare down at this little hair, and I think "When I get home. I'll cut you off when I get home." And then I get home and promptly forget. Memories of the hair go down the drain, along with every value-less, trivial and horrifying thing that happens here. I purge it out, and in so doing forget my appointment with the hair. And then, the next day, when I'm booting dbase or standardizing a list, and the lag sets in and my eyes wander, I look down and there, there sticking out like a stinger that has only glanced the surface, there's the hair. Fuck.

Monday, December 12, 2005

The day of my ascendency

Yeah, it's my birthday. I got a box of jelly beans, a video game and a Lamy Studio fountain pen in brushed steel. Like this.

It's totally hot. And another story has settled around my temples and refuses to dislodge. I want to get it out quickish, so that I can get on with the novel making. My impatience is legendary.

Okay, that's all you're getting out of me today. The heat's off at work, and frankly it's a little difficult to type in these conditions. I may just end up humming most of the day.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Getting old, getting famous, getting tired

First off, my birthday is on monday. I will be thirty-three years old. Hitting my stride, I think. Though I was trying to figure out how long it had been since I had done certain things: wrote first story with some thought of getting published (three years), lived in Chicago (fourteen years), owned this jakcet (seventeen years). Seventeen. Jesus, I'm pretty sure it's out of style by now. But it's an old army surplus summer weight. I wore it the first night I got drunk, the night after the Christ School game my senior year. Walked around Craddock's apartment with a budweiser in the in the cargo pocket, then stood in the kitchen and passed around a bottle of southern comfort they kept in the freezer. Yeah.

Secondly, I got another rewrite request from Interzone. I am both happy and sad. I love the magazine, and I love working with Jetse. I would, however, like to be good enough that I can write the story correctly the first time through. That's part of my perfectionist instinct coming out. A learning process, I suppose. Something I'll pick up in time. And looking back at the last couple months, I'm overwhelmed at how well things are going. If I buckle down and turn this story into something IZ is willing to buy, that'll be a fourth sale in as many months.

Finally. Tired. I don't want to go into all of it, but my job is getting ridiculous. It's worse than nepotism around here. It's like we intentionally reward incompetence. How do you get ahead? You don't do your job. You spend your days talking fantasy basketball with the boss, listening to jam band music and scouring the internet for really bitchin' speakers. You dress like a homeless person. During the production meeting yesterday, it was pointed out that we were *days* behind on schedule. Why? my boss asked. Because X isn't doing his job. Duh. So boss flipped out and blamed everyone else for...fuck. I don't want to explain it. These people are just shit. Let's leave it at that.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Damn straight

I'm going to dip out of the literary conversation happening below to talk about something irrelevant. You remember how I said "Ah, 15 degrees. That'll be warm someday." Of course you do. That day is today. This morning's temperature, as I tromped out to the garage, was two point three. Now, if I lived somewhere rural, this is exactly the sort of day where I'd put on the warm hat and the big boots, and go on a serious hike with my dog. Walk by some streams, listen to some birds. Laugh in booming clouds of ice. That sort of thing. Somehow, huddling from my car to the Kohls and then back just ain't the same.