Things to do today (sorry for these lists, but they do help to keep my brain organized; feel free to skip over them):
- noon, Josh Tibbitts
- M.K. Srinivasan - 212-627-2522
- Call Crown
- send out SH contracts/checks
- read history book
- read two articles for canon. perv.
- read Weber's Protestant Ethic
- write two paragraphs and points for canon. perv.
- read Breton's paper and revise her grade
- put together Francois self-publishing info
- grad matching funds application for ICFA
- send Q's to Patrick Hayden
- Asian SF book proposal
- call Pair - how to accept credit cards?
- write recommendation for Shmuel and mail to Humanities Division, Dean of Students Office
Tomorrow's another long day. There's a candidate coming in for the position of nonfiction professor in the department, so I'd like to go to one or two of the things they have scheduled with him if possible. And then in the evening, there's a pre-Valentine's-Day smut reading in my department; it should be fun, I think, though I admit to having a bit of anxiety about reading smut to my colleagues. But I figure if they can do it, I certainly ought to be able to. Honestly, it's not so much the reading that's the problem. It's the two questions of a) should I properly dramatize the sex scenes, which might be embarrassing, and b) should I read something that's really hot, even though it's maybe not so literary, which might be embarrassing in a different way. Eh. Not a big deal either way; not worth stressing about. I won't stress. So there.
Had a wonderful visit with Kevin; fell apart all over him Saturday night (I think?) due to accumulated stress, but he was wonderfully steadying, and left me feeling like I probably really can cope with everything this semester. Including my finances. I may owe a big hunk in taxes this year; I'm sort of scared to look at them properly. I was scared to even think about it until I dumped all over Kev. I guess the Freudians are right about that whole 'putting thoughts into language distances them (moving from primary to secondary processes) and thus makes trauma easier to cope with'. I don't believe that works all the time -- I think sometimes putting things into words makes them more intense and emotional, rather than less. But it does seem to work for reducing trauma, especially when you're traumatized beyond all reason. Karina said something about my having a phobia about finances -- it's not quite at phobia stage, but it could get there, I think. Going back to grad school was not good for my financial stability. I think I'm going to have to move my goal from 'financial stability at 30' to 'financial stability at 35'. I suppose that's okay. Makes me feel like a little kid, though. I think in my head, part of the definition of 'grown-up' is 'financially stable'.
Haven't had a chance to really miss him yet; his departure was certainly softened by Karina still being here. It was so nice to come home after a miserably long day to someone. Someone who had done three loads of dishes, no less. I am so lucky. And it's possible that he may be able to come back out in two weekends; depends on various factors that he has little control over, but if it happens, it would be awfully nice. Everyone pray for low plane fares from Chicago to Salt Lake City, okay? He's probably not going to know if he can come until less than a week before travelling.
Okay, I could babble further at you, but I can tell that I'm really avoiding work. Let's see how much I can get done by lunchtime, okay? I may check back in with y'all later today -- again, sorry for the long silence. Just didn't have the energy to journal.
Noon. Well, I read those articles ("Jane Austen and the Masturbating Girl" was actually funny as well as interesting; Sedgwick can be scathing sometimes...) and made the phone calls. I think it's at least relatively offical now -- Crown/Melcher want me to editor a sequel to Aqua Erotica, tentatively entitled Bodies of Water. It's planned as a Summer 2001 beach book, and I'll be looking for stories that emphasize heat as well as water. So anywhere from oceans to rivers to lakes to bathtubs...but more of a beach/tropics feel overall than in the previous book. I think they're aiming for this being the perfect beach book. I'm not sure how many people are going to be comfortable reading a book with a naked person on the cover while they sun themselves on the beach -- but maybe they won't put naked people on the cover this time. Hmm...we'll see.
In any case, I'm delighted. It does mean that they're not wanting to do the best internet erotica book I proposed to them -- or at least not yet. Bob says to talk to him about that again when we finish this project up (somewhere in late spring, I imagine). So it's not dead, but it's definitely not alive either. Hovering in limbo for the moment. Could definitely be worse.
So if all goes well with contract negotiations in the next weeks, this may solve that financial panic I was talking about. Fingers crossed. It's a larger initial print run than AE, which is nice. Hopefully that means I get more money too. :-) But you guys have to please all run out and buy copies when it comes out, so that we sell through the initial print run and they remain impressed by me. Okay? That'll make it much easier for me to edit anthologies in the future.
And just a quick nice note in addition to this good news; they've just contracted for another 15,000 copies of AE. Which makes this the fourth printing, and brings the total print run up to 85,000. :-) The first two print runs took it to 45,000, and they had sold all of those before Christmas. Very satisfying. Yay, us! :-)
Of course, all of this brings up the question of agents. I'm a bit bewildered by the whole agents thing, to be honest. I don't have one, and in fact, someone just asked me if I wanted to be one for them. :-) I don't know the first thing about agenting, so while I'm flattered, I'm going to have to say no on that. But I'm pretty sure that I should get me an agent before doing contract negotiations on this sequel, and I a) feel weird about it, because I didn't have one the last time and it somehow feels rude to get one at this stage, and b) don't know where to find one. Susie Bright's agent, while very nice to me, was also too busy to take on new clients. I guess I'll call Marcy Sheiner and ask her if she has an agent who might be helpful. But if that doesn't pan out, I'm not sure where one goes from here. Suggestions welcome (especially ones that don't take too much time!)
Okie, back to work.
Image NotebookI came home tired from working all day but the snow was falling heavy and thick and beautiful so I opened my door and called up the stairs to her to come down and she came down and I put down my bag and she put on her coat and I rewrapped my scarf and she put on the green beret that she gave me once on a sunny day in San Francisco because I had seen it in a shop and loved it beyond all reason and we went out into the night closing the door quietly behind us and the almost-silence of the snowfall and the crunch-squish of the thick snow over the pavement under our shoes as we walked up one block over one down one and back over and home again and just chatting about the day with him and the day at school and saying goodbye and trying to stay awake in class and how marvelous the crunch-squish was and what fools were the homeowners who had shovelled with their pavements now only thinly covered and their sounds all erased and the dry vines smothered in snow that a few months ago had carried heavy wine grapes all blue-purple delectable and she wanted to know what they tasted like and I couldn't come up with a way to describe the taste that is grapely but also more than grapely until finally I told her they were like plums which is at least a little true but they are really also like wine and like grapes and like fresh and heavy snow.