Hello California

View from Jed’s guest room window this morning, palm trees and colorful houses and bougainvillea — hello, California. 🙂

I’m still a little tired from a few nights of broken sleep (tornado siren, party, dinner out late with George), but feeling better; I think if I sleep well tonight, I’ll be back to normal again. That’ll be good, because I’m hoping to get a lot of writing done the next four days.

The plan is to use this part of the trip as a semi-serious writing retreat — today, I’m hoping to write from 9-3 or so. Or try to, anyway. If I can finish a draft of the Jump Space book this week (not impossible?), that would be amazing.

Other than that, hanging out with Jed, probably lots of board games and TV in the evening. We started watching a new show together yesterday, Gentleman Jack (on HBO Max), which I’m quite liking one episode in. Gentleman Jack is based on a true story borne from Anne Lister’s secret diaries.

Lister kept diaries regarding her relationships with her secret female lovers as well as her efforts in reinstating her family home, Shibden Hall, back to notoriety. She is dashing and moody and sort of Byron-esque, and it’s really interesting seeing how we react to a woman behaving the way a lordly man typically does. The show plays with that in fun ways. If you liked Dickinson, you’ll probably like this. Season 1 is complete; season 2 will start June 6, 2022, so it’ll be a while.

Ellen Kushner & Delia Sherman, would love to hear what you think of this show.

I’m going back to reading for a bit now. I just finished Delia’s collection of short stories, Young Woman in a Garden and Other Stories, which was delightful. The book blurb does a better job describing it that I would, so I give you that, with my recommendation: “In her vivid and sly, gentle and wise, long-anticipated first collection, Delia Sherman takes seemingly insignificant moments in the lives of artists or sailors—the light out a window, the two strokes it takes to turn a small boat—and finds the ghosts haunting them, the magic surrounding them. Here are the lives that make up larger histories, here are tricksters and gardeners, faeries and musicians, all glittering and sparkling, finding beauty and hope and always unexpected, a touch of wild magic.”

I’ve now started Emma Newman, who I hadn’t read before, and I’m really liking Planetfall so far — sort of like Becky Chambers and Martha Wells (and me) in terms of complex relationship dynamics and personal interactions, but with a nice added dose of science weirdness and new idea energy. If you come to science fiction for the sense of wonder, she’s giving out plenty of that energy…

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