Finished reading Wild…

Finished reading Wild Life, most wonderful. One more story left in For the Relief of Unbearable Urges, which I'm liking better and better as I go. Kelly Link told me at dinner last night that Englander got $300,000 for this collection. I'm a bit astonished. I suppose selling to the New Yorker, the Atlantic, and winning the O'Henry Award will do good things for your marketability. Cory Doctorow said he wanted to talk to Englander's agent. :-)

Nice chat with Cliff yesterday was followed by reading and then more of David's tajine over couscous, followed by BARTing up to Berkeley and attending Kelly's reading and hanging out at Au Coquelet afterwards with about 20 people, many of whom I didn't get to talk to enough. (Specifically, Karen Joy Fowler and Debbie Notkin, for starters. Ah well.) Did have a fun conversation with Jed and Cory (also got a proof copy of Cory's new novel, very exciting) and Dan and Nadya (his partner, who we managed to drag along and who claimed that she had a good time, even though she's not big into sf (she does like Murakami, so we thought she'd like Link, and we were right)). Lots of discussion of AI, which I know nothing about. I wish I did. It's one of those subjects that I find very interesting in concept, though I suspect the practicalities of it may depress me. I *want* intelligent computers, dangit. Most of my friends who know AI research say it ain't gonna happen. :-(

Came home and pretty much crashed. This morning, more silliness on the Rumor Mill, followed by some solid work for the art department at SH. I've been helping them out, most recently with reading upcoming stories and suggesting illustrators. Fun! Would like to really expand our pool of illustrators at some point, though.

Should shower and dress and make a run out to the post office. I have a birthday present for Kirsten (though I'm actually not sure when her birthday is/was. Sometime around this time of year, I think. January? March?) Then back here for lunch and hanging out some more with David; then he's driving me down to the South Bay to drop me at Jed's. Dinner with Jedediah. Lots more reading. Kate gave me most of her new novel -- did I mention that Kate Bachus won a writing contest and now has a novel contract with Del Rey? Yay, Kate! I'm going to read it, and assuming that I like it, am going to go pester some people to see if I can facilitate Kate getting an agent. I'm not sure if the Del Rey contract will have any flexibility, but it's clearly something she should now be doing... I could always point my agent at her, but mine isn't so much of a f/sf person, so I think someone else would likely be better.

Before I go, I must mope a little. So far, two people have written back about my new story, and they both had very mixed responses to it. They didn't hate it, but they didn't love it either. One said that it felt very distant. Does it feel distant to all of you? It wasn't supposed to feel distant. I'm sad. Doesn't anyone love my poor little story? Just one of you?

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