My book: final evolution

Apr. 21st, 2019 08:40 am
tsaiko: Brown cat in brown box staring at camera with the word "What?" above him. (cat in box)
[personal profile] tsaiko
I have the galley for my book to review which means I only have to read this story ONE MORE TIME before it's published. I'm sure I'll find some minor typo. They seem to multiply when I'm not looking. I am so sick of reading/rereading this story at this point. But! It will be published May 1st and then I'll be done with it. If I don't write a couple of short scenes about the characters afterwards. No promises.

I have the option of doing a dedication. I'm seriously thinking of doing one to Editing cat, who so helpfully sat in front of my screen every time I had to work on the book. Thanks cat.

The book can be preordered here. Which makes me nervous. I don't know why. The point is for people to buy the book and yet I am nervous about people buying the book. Sigh. Anxiety, why you gotta be like this?

There is the possibility I will not bake bread today. I didn't realize how low on flour I was, especially given the baking I did yesterday. I do have bread flour though, so I'm looking to see if there's a good recipe using bread flour. I have a possibility so we shall see.
konsectatrix: (Default)
[personal profile] konsectatrix
Via [personal profile] ephemera, The Goblin Emperor e-book is temporarily $1.99 (it still says full price, but the promotional price comes up on the bookseller links). Alas, it is US only.

I've been grabbing a lot of stuff via the promos on Smart Bitches, Trashy Books ([syndicated profile] smartbitches_feed), which is overtly about romance genre, but also overlaps into all sorts of books and recs that are of interest to me, and alerts when they're on sale. So I've been reading a lot of fiction on my lunch breaks lately, and it's mostly been pretty neat stuff. The whole Broken Earth Series, starting with The Obelisk Gate, which was amazing, and heart-crushing and then hopeful again, and a book about space whale ships and how baby girls from the wrong side of the tracks manage to hijack them <3, and this latest I'm reading, And I Darken, appears to be more or less what happens when you drop a female baby drakthos in a human meat suit into the Ottoman Empire* (Her first word was literally "Mine," you guys. There's no one to teach her how to properly keep things shining, and human society is obviously not her friend, so the trainwreck is basically.... yeah. But she's not dead yet, and she's learning. And of course, it's the first of a series. I didn't notice. Argh.)

Anyway. Much reading. Not much writing. A lot of editing. (Okay, I did manage to rewrite Stone vs. Luce so I at least I know what I'm writing toward, and that got interesting). But yeah, that's about it on the writing/reading end of things.

****

MOAR RL )

Srsly though, I need to get a grip. Going to PA tomorrow as Mom owns Easter. Took Monday off after that, because I figure I'd need it. I think we're going to Philly the weekend after that because a friend wants to hang out. I am never opposed to going to Philly. And somehow this day has flown by and I didn't do a single thing to break ground on the part of the yard I was going to move the tomatoes to. Bad me. How you doin'?

Baking, baking, baking

Apr. 20th, 2019 04:10 pm
tsaiko: Gif of a lemming falling off an edge (Default)
[personal profile] tsaiko
I decided that I wanted something sweet in the house, and found out that Miome could have pound cake. Of course, I had to make pound cake. Although really, it should be called 1/2 pound cake since I halved the recipe in order to fit it in one pan. The only thing I did to the traditional recipe - equal weights butter, sugar, eggs, and flour - was add 2 tsp of almond extract and make almond glaze. It is delicious.

For dinner tonight I'll probably make biscuits so we can have it with ham and veggies. Then I need to make bread tomorrow for the next week. So much baking.

random cat report

Apr. 17th, 2019 09:02 pm
konsectatrix: (Default)
[personal profile] konsectatrix
I should link this to Mousie to show her there are worse things than calling her cat "Potatoes".

Speaking of, I walked into my bedroom this morning to find said pile of fluffy tubers rolling himself up in the rug. When he saw me, he unrolled and skittered away.

When I walked back in a few minutes later, he was rolling himself up in the rug again, and the other two cats were sitting nearby, watching.

I sorta stepped around them and over him and got my sweater and went to work. I have no idea what that madness is about and I want nothing to do with it.

***

Jareth, in the meantime, will leap up on the dining room, stuff his paws in your bowl of ramen and KNEEEEEAD the noodles if you leave it unattended for longer than 10 seconds. Squish. Squish. Prrr.

But he's been my writing bro of late, and a devoted laundry support bro, as well as being a pen-stealing stoner jerk that demands belly rubs at the most inconvenient times, so I can't trash talk him too hard. ...Dude, please stop gnawing on my laptop. Thanks.

***

My cat, however, is a precious murder baby who never does anything wrong and always falls off the cat tree 100% on purpose.

a poem for poetry month

Apr. 16th, 2019 12:22 am
tsuki_no_bara: (Default)
[personal profile] tsuki_no_bara
just a poem for today, because i worked way too many hours and i'm pretty sure i fucked something up and there is absolutely no way i can handle september and october busy season by myself.

Before this day I loved
like an animal loves a human,

with no way to articulate
how my bones felt in bed

or how a telephone felt so strange
in my paw. O papa—

I called out to no one—
but no one understood. I didn’t

even. I wanted to be caught. Like
let me walk beside you on my favorite leash,

let my hair grow long and wild
so you can comb it in the off-hours,

be tender to me. Also let me eat
the meals you do not finish

so I can acclimate, climb into
the way you claim this world.

Once, I followed married men:
eager for shelter, my fur

curled, my lust
freshly showered.

I called out, Grief.
They heard, Beauty.

I called out, Why?
They said, Because I can and will.

One smile could sustain me for a week.
I was that hungry. Lithe and giddy,

my skin carried the ether of a so-so
self-esteem. I felt fine. I was

fine, but I was also looking
for scraps; I wanted them all to pet me.

You think because I am a woman,
I cannot call myself a dog?

Look at my sweet canine mind,
my long, black tongue. I know

what I’m doing. When you’re with
the wrong person, you start barking.

But with you, I am looking out
this car window with a heightened sense

I’ve always owned. Oh every animal
knows when something is wrong.

Of this sweet, tender feeling, I was wrong,
and I was right, and I was wrong.

--"Bitch Instinct", Analicia Sotelo

Just three days left...

Apr. 15th, 2019 07:41 pm
me_ya_ri: white lotus flower on green water with reflection in the water (Default)
[personal profile] me_ya_ri

...on the 2019 Space Opera StoryBundle!

Fourteen amazing space operas (including three of mine with queer characters fighting, savining each other and the universe and falling in love) for just $15 but it only lasts for 3 more days.

Don't miss out!

the pancakes were an excellent choice

Apr. 15th, 2019 12:15 am
tsuki_no_bara: (Default)
[personal profile] tsuki_no_bara
i think i might have figured out what my bigbang is about - like, what the story actually is - which would be great except if so, it means i'm only at the middle or possibly the end of the beginning, not the beginning of the end, and i have two weeks to write a lot more than i was expecting. altho now my title fits better.... i've done bigbang enough times that you'd think i'd know what i was doing by now, but no. i don't.

in other news, i spent a lot of time today hanging out with people and buying stuff i probably don't need (chiefly a salt and pepper shaker set shaped like cacti, because cacti). first, brunch with [livejournal.com profile] tamalinn and friends and yummy pancakes. then four of us went to home goods, which was like half an hour away. we met a very cute, very chill shih tzu and her little old lady mom and her mom's little old lady friend. apparently she was a rescue and came with a box of clothes. a stylish puppy! the little old ladies were really sweet and had absolutely no problem with these total strangers giving their dog some love. and seriously, she was the most chill dog. after that was target and no dogs, but i did get the aforementioned cactus salt and pepper shakers and a new teakettle, because the whistle in my old one is busted. so something useful and something cactus. :D after that the grocery store (by now just me and one other person) and then it was 5:30 and i was finally going home. and then i worked on my bang for a while and realized at like 9:00 that i might have hit on the actual story. even tho i still don't know how it ends.

and yes, i will eventually stop talking about the bang but probably not for two weeks, because the draft is due may 1 and i'll probably be panicking right up until then.

last night at seriously ass o'clock i signed on to my work laptop and e-filed a bunch of tax returns and extensions. but not as many as i was hoping! tomorrow will be fun. :|

South of Plaza Mayor by Plaza de Cascorro—
past streets named Lettuce, Raisin, Barley—
is Madrid’s outdoor market called El Rastro,
hundreds of stalls, lean-tos, tents squeezed tight
as niches where anything from a clawfoot tub,
to a surgeon’s saw to a tattered La Celestina
bound in sheepskin could be haggled down
with raunchy bravado or the promise of beer.
Mostly it was junk passed off to the tourists
as pricey souvenirs, like plastic castanets, hand fans
of silk (rayon really), or tin-plate doubloons.
So what drew the youth of Madrid to this place
every Sunday afternoon by the hundreds?
None of us were bargain hunters or hoarders,
just hippieish kids in patched dungarees,
espadrilles, & wool coats frayed to cheesecloth,
our pockets with enough pesetas to buy
a handful of stale cigarettes. It was to revel
in life, squeeze out joy from the lees of fate,
make fellowship like pilgrims to a shrine.
We’d sprawl against a wall or a lamppost
long into the afternoon to talk, joke, carouse,
eat cheese rinds with secondhand bread,
drink wine more like iodine than merlot,
oblivious to time & space, the crowds tripping
on our legs, tossing butts into our heads,
how they smelled like horses & we told them so,
who then shot out crude medieval curses,
but we didn’t care, for we felt alive as never before,
singular in every breath, word, & thought,
stubborn as wayward seeds that trick a drought
& grow into hardscrabble woodland trees.

--"El Rastro", Orlando Ricardo Menes

Taxes

Apr. 14th, 2019 12:01 pm
tsaiko: Gif of a lemming falling off an edge (Default)
[personal profile] tsaiko
I hate doing taxes. Especially since I switched jobs, got unemployment, and was self-employed all in the same year, so I knew they were going to be complicated. So what have I done? Waited until the day before they are due to do them. I R SMART!
tsuki_no_bara: (Default)
[personal profile] tsuki_no_bara
yesterday was disconcertingly chill for the last day before a big deadline. i'm expecting monday to be a clusterfuck of epic proportions. i brought my laptop home with the assumption that there are going to be returns or extensions that need to be e-filed over the weekend, and if i can do them now, i won't have to do them on monday. hopefully.

and i was so excited to be leaving before seven (ok, i left at 6:45) that i forgot to put postage on all the certifieds i had to send, so i ended up paying $73 to certify twelve checks for a client. >.< work will pay me back, but still. i was annoyed mostly because i had to wait for the postal clerk to put postage on all the envelopes, rather than just having him stamp all the manifests.

there was a woman on the bus home who had the coolest shoes, and i really wanted to take a picture of them but couldn't because that's a. weird, b. rude, and c. stalkery. and i thought it would be equally weird to get up and move seats on a half-empty bus just to tell a total stranger i liked her shoes. but they were really cool. like spectator shoes, kind of, but with a heel and in two shades of maroon. i loved them. i seriously should have told her, weirdness be damned.

i had four things to do today (dentist, taxes, comics, bigbang) and did all of them! holyshit. and yes, i did file my taxes two days before the deadline. ahem. never let it be said i did things on time when i could put them off. i'm starting to panic slightly about my bang, tho, because i don't know how it ends and i don't know if i'll actually be able to finish it before may 1. assuming i figure out how it ends. >.<

God likes to be played like a piano.
Dawn glows with sailors dancing in the eye of a storm
by the river of black water. These days
things make sense under the green and yellow
and brown sky of Granada and I wear a tie as penance
for the sins of my navel. The saints of the north
and the saints of the south fly by dropping scorpions
down my neck and those women
with fire in their eyes drink melon juice and wink.
I play billiards on the other side of town
thinking bone in and bone out is the legacy of canines.
The camouflage, the hunt, the war of ice and water.
God knows. He clinks all day and night.
Fly me to the moon. Yes, I’d rather be sleeping.
A slender, tender rain comes over Granada
and the storm passes and the city sighs.

--"The Andalusian Dog Finds Answers", Pablo Medina

moon landing oreos! someday.

Apr. 11th, 2019 11:45 pm
tsuki_no_bara: (Default)
[personal profile] tsuki_no_bara
just a poem today, and the knowledge that oreo is coming out with (no doubt limited addition) moon-landing-commemorating cookies. as a fan of both oreos and the moon landing, i find this very exciting.

At the coffee shop you love,
white mugs heavy on the table
between us, young baristas—
spiky haired and impatient—
cannot imagine how two people
so old to them can feel so wanton,
coffee growing cold between us,
middle-aged bodies growing hot
under the other’s gaze. Even now,
apart, you send me songs so I may
listen to love from the golden throat
of a saxophone, piano keys playing
jazz across my soft belly.
How is it the tide of terror
has quit rising in me, or rises
and recedes as tides do, bringing
sea glass worked smooth
and lovely by the sheer fact
of time, bringing trash—
plastic mesh and old sneakers—
useless things now we might
bag up and remove, bringing
a lapping tongue of water up
over our toes as we hold hands
and walk along its edge—
carefully, gleefully, both.

--"Praisesong", Sarah Browning
tsaiko: Gif of a lemming falling off an edge (Default)
[personal profile] tsaiko
Why yes, 4:49pm on a Thursday is the perfect time to start cutting a large chunk of asphalt out from the middle of my street. I am absolutely sure you will be done cutting and repairing that piece of pavement by 5:00pm when you decide your workday is over and go home. You certainly won't leave a big hole surrounded by orange traffic cones to be dealt with tomorrow. Or possibly Monday. Not at all.

blargh! but also, black hole!

Apr. 11th, 2019 01:57 am
tsuki_no_bara: (Default)
[personal profile] tsuki_no_bara
well today was a day. :| i got a new laptop at work, because why would they want to wait until after busy season is over, and spent a couple hours in it waiting for everything to copy over. i could get some stuff done but i really needed to not be tethered to a desk in the it office. and later on my email stopped working and i had to find something to do with myself while the it guy tried to fix it, by which i mean he had to download some update or other and i couldn't use my laptop. which i really needed to, you know, do my job. process tax returns. efile. important shit. also i need a minion. still.

i left late but not too late, went to the post office where there wasn't much of a line, came home, had some quiche, watched the magicians. i have opinions about the current romantic pairings on that show and they are not nice ones. on the other hand, margo continues to be the best and fen is still the cutest.

yesterday we had baseball snacks to celebrate opening day at fenway - pigs in a blanket (yum), soft pretzels, peanuts, crackerjack, cupcakes. i ate a lot of pigs in blankets but did not actually eat the lunch i brought. also i had a very slow morning and then everything happened in the afternoon.

last night i made the quiche when i got home - at 9:15 - even tho all i really wanted to do was eat my sandwich and go to bed. i grated my thumb (no one makes shredded swiss so i have to buy a brick and grate it myself) and the quiche has slightly too eggy a consistency (not enough of the right cheese, i think) but it's full of mushrooms (yum) and now i don't have to make dinner the rest of the week. :D i can come home and just stick it in the toaster oven to heat up.

in the "science is fucking amazing" department, we have a picture of a black hole. like, an actual photo. taken by a network of eight telescopes. technically it's a photo of the gas and dust and stuff around the black hole, because you can't actually photograph a black hole itself, but still, how cool.

"The Decorative Airport Fern Is Not What It Pretends to Be", Jennifer L Knox

and it takes me a triple-take to realize it’s scanning
me, or something near my ear—that must be it. No plant’s
ever complimented my perfume—wait—there it goes
again. Did you see that? [Time passes, drinks] “Sure, I
remember when I thought you were a fern but you were!
Who could blame me?” I tell the what’s now a magnificent
purple tetrahedron, eggplant-sized cilia straining at its corners, just
a hint of ferniness remains in its fingertips—enough to blush.
We hug goodbye. The scent of flowers lingers around me
the next day. Flying home, a decorative airport fern that really
is a decorative airport fern says, “You smell nice.” I don’t
believe it, but it’s still a happy
ending.

starships are meant to fly

Apr. 9th, 2019 01:23 am
tsuki_no_bara: (Default)
[personal profile] tsuki_no_bara
on saturday, at the bar mitzvah, the dj played nicki minaj's starships, and the song was half over before i realized i didn't know it from the radio, but from a vid. which i apparently did not download. i found a starships vid on ao3 but it doesn't totally look like i remember, so i ask the fen in the audience - is there another vid about spaceships set to that song, or is there just the one and i'm remembering it wrong?

a thing i keep forgetting to mention that i liked about captain marvel - carol's flat practical-military boots. like, she's not wearing wedge heels that make no sense

oh my god, this geico commercial is channeling its inner avengers: endgame. wtf. the geico gecko is even wearing a tiny infinity gauntlet.

anyway. as i was saying. there are no wedge heels in captain marvel! especially not on the military ladies! well, not on carol - i don't remember if minn-erva was wearing them or not. maybe costuming saw sense?

we're now hip-deep in busy season at work. i need a minion to do the administrative shit (booking travel, doing expense reports, editing slides, taking care of stuff for the valuation partner) so i can concentrate on the tax shit. i just need to survive this week and then i get a. overtime, and b. passover in florida. woot.

and now the poem for today.

First, above all, I live forever. And
thereafter redecorate paradise
in the majesty of the Roof Nightclub,
DJ Lucifer, at predawn hours
terrifies the floorboards to give way to
Apollyon’s abyss, reflecting scarred light
on the wall. The mirror alive with tremors.

Herons bring news of consolation.
I rebuke them for my brilliance
and enrich uranium in my cove
across Navy Island. The hospital
vanishes in the fog, so I arrange rain
to restore magenta ginger lilies
where my mother walked to born me.
Malignant fireflies at Christmas;
sorrel then sorrow, such is Kingston, there
funky carols seethe asphalt with famine.

Forever ends. Never a moment holds
‘still-here,’ when sand murmurs through my fingers.
I number and chant down stars, ellipsoidal
as fire ants with, “I think I will be
killed once I die!” and again return
the Super Ape, to conquer the Roof Club,
rip off Apollyon’s hell fence; skin him; dance
thundering subatomic dub music,
until my rage yields settled coral.
A million embers of eyes split from coals
to see me loom out the shadows’ sunray
by the turntable wearing a splash crown.

--"Roof Nightclub", Ishion Hutchinson

it was a weekend of fam and bigbang

Apr. 8th, 2019 12:22 am
tsuki_no_bara: (Default)
[personal profile] tsuki_no_bara
yesterday i got a very late start but managed to do some work on my bang before i had to take myself to my parents' hotel room so i could get ready for the bar mitzvah. which was highly untraditional but also kind of fun. my cousin's kid didn't do any of the standard bar/bat mitzvah rituals - no torah reading, no hebrew, no service - but he's apparently involved in food programs for low income and homeless folks, and he talked about that, and there was some audience participation and teaching moments about justice (in a really neat way - the bar mitzvah boy asked some questions and people gave thoughtful answers, then he gave his own thoughtful answers), so while it wasn't the most traditional of bar mitzvahs in a ritual sense it did have some definitely jewish elements. my sister and i got to read a prayer (one that we're used to singing, so reading it was a little weird), as did my parents, and overall it was a good time. the dj played the most random assortment of songs (including john denver! which all the kids sang along to, which was weird as hell) and the food wasn't that good (altho the meatballs were delish and the cake was moist and chocolatey altho i didn't love the frosting) (totally a personal preference), but it was fun and the bar mitzvah boy was very poised and articulate and looked very grown-up in his suit and bowtie. his brothers are all absurdly tall for high school and college students and i had to stand on my tiptoes to hug a bunch of kids young enough to be mine. and there was a photobooth. and like i said, it was fun. i got home really late, tho, so no poem.

because bar/bat mitzvahs are properly a whole weekend, today my cousin had the fam over for brunch and i stayed a bit longer than i was planning to. >.< food was good (pancakes! lox! turkey bacon!), company was good, we went for a walk around the neighborhood because the weather was so nice and i got to imagine chris evans dressed as something very unlike him to give out halloween candy. (his mom and sister live around the corner from my cousin and we walked by the house. apparently he comes over on halloween to hand out candy.) afterwards i went to two grocery stores because there's the store i actually like and the store that has gefilte fishlets, and they're not the same store. i'm not sure if i made progress on my bgbang or not - i did some more editing and rewriting (since i changed some of the story for like the millionth time) and only much later - like, after i got home - did i realize i thought character a was thing b, when in fact she's not. so i have to edit the edited bits. oy. i'm having profound and annoying issues with this and it is entirely my fault for not planning anything out ahead of time.

killing eve is back! and weird as ever. excellent.

have a poem.

into the strenuous briefness
Life:
handorgans and April
darkness,friends

i charge laughing.
Into the hair-thin tints
of yellow dawn,
into the women-coloured twilight

i smilingly
glide.       I
into the big vermilion departure
swim,sayingly;

(Do you think?)the
i do,world
is probably made
of roses & hello:

(of solongs and,ashes)

--"Post Impressions (VI)", E E Cummings

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