Look Closely

Look closely, and you can see Ellie enjoying her garden.

Our old dog loves the garden so, so much. Even though she now hates going up and down stairs (her poor hips), every time I go out to work on the garden, Elinor insists on coming with. So many yummy things to smell, I guess. She likes to roll in the grass, then sit out on the lawn and watch the world go by.

(She has a leash attached to a stake in the garden, so neighbors, no worries if you see her out there on her own — look for the leash if you’re worried. It’s not long enough to let her reach the sidewalk or the walk up to the front door.)

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Summer Writing Goals

On Monday June 1, I’m starting my summer writing, and setting some official goals, mostly to avoid the situation where my days get eaten up with other things. I don’t want to end up facing mid-August in a wild fury at not having written this summer. (I mean, my garden would look AMAZING, I’m sure. But still.)

I’m setting a word count goal to start: 30,000 words by end of June, which should be enough to finish another (final?) draft of the novel (Liminal Space), write a new short story (due to an anthology), finish revising the Jump Space RPG, and finish drafting at least one food essay. Exciting, yes? Yes.

And that’s just 1000 words / day, and I write about 1000 words / hour, so I’m only committing to writing one hour / day. All right, maybe two hours / day, with revision time. But still, I really can do that. To the shed!

I’ve just joined the 4thewords community, which I’m hoping will help motivate gamification-wise. As a plus, they’re going to be featuring my cookbook next week, which is very sweet of them — they put out a call for people whose book launches were interrupted by the pandemic. We’ll even have a t-shirt featuring Gayesha, my Sri Lankan cook from the Sigiriya game, that your avatar can wear in the game! (Right now, my avatar is the generic default. I’m looking forward to messing with it.)

Anyone else here on there? Would love to ‘friend’ you there.

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Attending a Nebula Panel

Attending a virtual Nebula panel with Whitney Strix BeltránRyan Schapals, etc. on narrative game design, and once again, talking with them makes me want to do more work in that arena. I am such a distracted ADD magpie! Ooh, pretty shiny! (Maybe I should go back to the idea of pitching a project to Choice of Games? Hmm….)

That said, it continues to be pretty awesome that I can attend this panel (occasionally chatting in the text box with other attendees, or posting questions for the panelists, which makes it different from just watching a recorded panel) — while also straightening up my kitchen, which is sort of a disaster at the moment. 

Fascinating to think about how conventions are going to evolve going forward. Among other things, I’d love to see someone try a weekend-long round-the-clock convention, where we, say, start on Friday morning, and then hand off responsibility every 3 hours to a time zone further along.

So start at 9 a.m. in the Eastern time zone, for example, and then 3 hours later, hand off con management (moderation, tech support, etc.) to people in California, and keep rotating westward, following the setting sun.

There’d be some gaps for oceans, so you might not be able to stick strictly to every three hours, which is fine, but it’d be fun to ‘hand off’ to Saudi Arabia (I was in a room party yesterday evening that was being hosted by the bid party for the Saudi Arabian WorldCon, and it was 3:30 a.m. for them when I was attending) at a reasonable hour for them, etc.

As we think about international cooperation and welcoming everyone into the speculative fiction experience, I’m super-interested in seeing what a real NonStopCon ™ might look like.

(I didn’t really trademark the name NonStopCon. But it’s pretty good, huh? Someone should do that and give me credit for the idea… I tried to talk Steven H Silver into it yesterday in a room party, and he said, a little frazzledly, to let him get through the Nebulas first. Fair enough. )

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