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[personal] Reading, infusion

The Endurance reading went well last night. We had about 12 for dinner, and about 35 at the Cedar Hills Powells. I wore the spiffy new hat that [info]janetl sent me with her custom-made patch on it that says “Virtual Mohawk”. Came home, crashed out and slept over nine hours. Go, me.

Off to breakfast with Dad shortly, then chemo. Y’all play nice while I’m gone.

[writing|cancer] Plowing ahead with books and chemo

Yesterday my oncologist informed me that I had lost all my nose hairs. Full nasal Brazilian, that’s me. Which explains the odd booger-to-finger ratio lately, as I commented on my Twitter and Facebook feeds. And the perpetually runny nose. It’s like being three years old again. I shall attempt to maintain nasal dignity at tonight’s Powell’s reading and signing for the release of | LiveJournal ]. Do come if you’re in the PDX area. Given that I actually slept well last night, I might even be lively!

The postponed chemo ten of twelve starts tomorrow. I passed my blood tests yesterday, and we discussed whether my ongoing head cold was of concern. So long as I don’t run a fever or slide back into GI terror, they’re going to plug and run me.

Meanwhile, plans are stirring for the spring. I expect to have the first volume of Sunspin, Calamity of So Long a Life, revised and back to my agent by the beginning of March so it can finally go to market. I have a few travel itineraries coming together. Look for me at RadCon, unless I’m feeling desperately broke in February, with other appearances to be announced.

I don’t have my writing brain or my normal life back yet, but I can see them from here. Tonight’s reading and signing will be a nice reminder.

[books|repost] Endurance reading and signing at Powells Cedar Hills


My one and only formal public appearance this fall will be for a reading and signing in celebration of the forthcoming release of EndurancePowells | Barnes & Noble ], the second Green book.

I’ll be appearing at the Powell’s Cedar Hills store on Thursday, November 17th, at 7 pm. As is usual, I’ll have an open dinner from 5 pm to 6:30 pm, at McMenamins Cedar Hills, at the north end of the same retail complex Powell’s is in. If you’re planning to come to the dinner, please do let me know in comments or via email so I can include you in the headcount.

Hope to see you there.

[links] Link salad is dying for a peaceful night’s sleep

Endurance gets Klausnered

[info]jimvanpelt on psychotic persistence and creative success

Avro Vulcan over the wreck of the B-24 “Lady Be Good”, Libya, date unknown — If you can’t write a haunting short story based on this image, you’re not really trying.

The Silver Lining of More Cancer Deaths — Well, yes, if you want to put it that way…

When Everyday Foods Are Hard to DigestGI Specialists Suspect Specific Carbohydrates May Cause Painful Symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I was diagnosed with IBS back in 2002, which in retrospect was probably a precursor to my colon cancer.

Autistic Kids May Have More Cells in Some Brain AreasMost of these neurons develop before birth, which would go against the theory that certain vaccines or other environmental influences encountered after birth may cause autism. Except that’s not a theory, it’s crank hysteria. Calling the thoroughly discredited vaccine-autism link a theory is like calling Creationism a theory. Or the Tooth Fairy. It’s an intellectually fatuous attempt to make your reporting appear balanced. (Thanks to David Goldman.)

24 Hours at FukushimaA blow-by-blow account of the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl. (Via [info]danjite.)

Mobile Flash Abandoned for HTML5: Adobe Surrenders, Apple Wins? — Presented without further comment.

The Story of Broke: Rebuilding the American Dream — Must-watch video for those who will never watch it, because, you know, liberals are evil.

Understanding the nature of hypocrisy — A little primer for my friends on the Right. And my own thoughts on the subject, from a year or so ago: [ | LiveJournal ]

?otD: Are your feets too big?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo fatigue)
Body movement: airport walking to come
Hours slept: 7.5 hours (badly interrupted)
Weight: n/a
Currently (re)reading: The Truth by Terry Pratchett

[books] Endurance is out today

Today is the release date for Endurance, the second of the Green books. She’s back, she’s bad, and she’s ready to be read. Publisher’s Weekly gave the book a starred review, so I know somebody liked it. My agent comments on the release here.

If you want to score the book for yourself, here’s some links. [ Powells | Barnes & Noble | ]

And of course, I’ll be at Powells Cedar Hills location on Thursday, November 17th, at 7 pm for a reading, discussion and signing. It’s my only formal public appearance this fall due to chemotherapy (I can’t even make it to Orycon this weekend), so if you want to catch me live and on the hoof, that’s your main chance.

I hope you enjoy the book.

[links] Link salad wakes up in California

My CT scan came back clean yesterday, as noted here: | LiveJournal ]. Thank you so much everyone for all the good wishes.

Endurance is officially out today — You know you want a copy. [ Powells | Barnes & Noble ]

Endurance is now available at — If you’re into audiobooks, check it out. Katherine Kellgren of the glorious voice, who narrated Green, is back with this one. And yes, they’ve acquired the audio rights to Kalimpura as well, so about this time next year you can have the whole set.

A fan review of Endurance — Not so much with the liking.

Ancient Cave Painters Were Realists, DNA Reveals — Art criticism through molecular biology?

Most Vertebrates — Including Humans — Descended from Ancestor With Sixth Sense — Or eighth or ninth or something. The point being, we lost it along the way. (Via Science Sushi.)

Light-Based Therapy Destroys Cancer CellsThe new approach, which features a heat-sensitive fluorescent dye, could eventually replace standard chemotherapy. Oh, Ghu.

Worldometers: Real time world statistics — A global dashboard. If you’re any kind of an information junkie, you sure could get lost in this. (Via Curiosity Counts, also well worth following.)

Black Holes, Safety, and the LHC UpgradeIf the LHC is to be upgraded, safety should be a central part of the plans. I find this article unintentionally hilarious.

Enceladus fires on AlderaanBad Astronomy with a terrific photo and a hilarious headline.

The Light of Alien CitiesCentauri Dreams with more on this concept I linked to elsewhere last week. I’m all for this, but continue to wonder about the multiple embedded assumptions in the idea.

Mississippi amendment on ‘personhood’ divides Christians — Yes, between those who might be sane and those who are viciously cruel.

Richard Land, Bocephus and the Scandal of Evangelical EthicsSlacktivist Fred Clark with a long, interesting piece on the deep moral failings of the American evangelical movement.

Occupy Wall Street vs The Tea Party — A rather nifty graphic comparing a grassroots movement to an astroturf Republican front group. (Remember, the original Tea Party gatherings were promoted and sponsored by FOX. Hardly an independent bottom-up effort, that.)

Cain campaign as a sign of decadence — A conservative commentator on Herman Cain, echoing something I’ve long said. You wouldn’t trust an amateur to spay your cat or to give you sound investment advice for your 401(K) — yet there are millions of Republians who think an avuncular amateur like Herman Cain would do a great job as president of the United States, or at least a better job than Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, or anybody else on offer who has actually worked in politics. Hey, it was the American Right who elected George W. Bush, bringing us 9-11, the Iraq War, and the worst economic collapse since the Great Depression. We know what amateur hour in White House can cost.

Romney Will Take Conservatives For Granted (and They Will Let Him) — Conservative commentator Daniel Larison on a possible Romney presidency. I take his point, though his analysis in the piece of George W. Bush as governing from the left is too bizarre to even comment on.

?otD: California much?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo fatigue)
Body movement: 30 minutes in hotel gym and spa
Hours slept: 8.5 hours (fitful)
Weight: n/a
Currently (re)reading: The Fifth Elephant by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad has got your number

Oxen and Sociopaths: Writing Endurance — A squib from me in the Tor/Forge newsletter.

How Amazon Can Afford to Give Away Books, FreeAmazon makes so much on Prime that digital media has become the perfect loss leader for the company. What about the authors>

Is Sitting Too Long a Major Cancer Risk?Study Shows Inactivity and Excess Sitting Linked to an Estimated 100,000 Cancer Cases a Year. (Thanks to David Goldman.)

Saber-Toothed Squirrel Lived Near Dinosaurs — Really? Saber-Toothed Squirrel? Heh.

Pale-faced Mars crew “lands” after 520 days in isolation

IBM Open-Sources Potential “Internet of Things” Protocol — More fascinating near term futurism. (Via [info]danjite.)

Changing Youth Migration Patterns: So Long New York, Hello… Portland? — Well, duh.

Conservatives Discover America — An entertaining and thought-provoking liberal rant from driftglass. He’s got it nailed, too.

Does the 1% Distract from the Next 19?

Looking beyond their needs to determine faultSlacktivist with an interesting perspective on the morality of the foreclosure crisis.

America’s ‘Oh Sh*t!’ MomentHas the U.S. deleted the very things that made it great? Niall Ferguson on how America can avoid imminent collapse. Fixing the toxic dysfunction in conservative politics would go a long way…

Red vs. Blue: Do Democrats Subsidize Republicans? — An interesting piece on the relationship between unionization and net tax burdens. Hint: the Red states benefit directly at the expense of taxes paid in the hated Blue states.

America: With God on our sidePresidential candidates feel no shame in asserting divine purpose in U.S. policies and actions. In this ubiquitous view of American exceptionalism, the nation is not bound by rules to which others must submit. (Snurched from Dispatches From the Culture Wars.)

Condi Rice Just Forgot About Pearl Harbor on Letterman — 9-11 was the first attack on American soil since the War of 1812? Really? Hey, GOP, this is reality calling. Anybody home?

?otD: 867-5309?

Wriing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo fatigue)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 8.5 hours (solid)
Weight: 212.6
Currently (re)reading: Hogfather by Terry Pratchett

[books] Endurance arrives

Endurance has arrived at my house. Green looks very sharp on the cover of her second book, racing through the city of Copper Downs as she does. Really, why not order a copy for yourself today? It’s a beautiful volume, and I’m proud of the story.

Also, don’t forget my reading on November 17th: [ | LiveJournal ]

[links] Link salad struggles to post

Kirkus reviews Endurance — Essentially positive but still snarky in that special Kirkus way.

The Sudden Death of Film — Roger Ebert on format changes. Ebooks, anyone?

Apple developing 3D mapping? — This will make the iOS platform even more interesting.

Telling the Story of the Brain’s Cacophony — The mind is a fascinating terrain. A lot of this article resonates for me given my current experiences with chemo brain. (Via my Dad.)

Tepco Detects Nuclear Fission at Damaged Fukushima Station

A Hot Wet Thousand Years and 10 Green Energy Stories to Avert it — Juan Cole with some perspectives on global warming.

GOP Freshmen On Medicare Attacks: Let’s Let Bygones Be Bygones — So it’s okay for Republicans to attack Democrats on this issue, but it’s not okay for Democrats to attack Republicans on this issue? What is this, “black, black, no tag backs!” day in Congress? Typical GOP thinking. We all know that forgiveness is at the heart of the conservative ethos, after all.

?otD: What do you do without your mouse?

Wriing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo fatigue)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 8.0 hours (fitful overnight)
Weight: 213.8
Currently (re)reading: Maskerade by Terry Pratchett

[publishing] Out of contract blues

Now I’m going to complain about something that will probably irk some of the aspiring writers who read this blog. It’s one of those established writer problems that can look ridiculous from the outside, but is perfectly real and serious from the inside.

I’m out of a trade publishing contract for the first time since 2006. And it feels very weird to me.

Mainspring was originally contracted by Tor in 2006 for a 2007 release, along with a second book to be named later, which was eventually Escapement. Near the end of that contract cycle, Green and Pinion were contracted. Near the end of that contract cycle, Endurance and Kalimpura were contracted.

Well, now it’s 2011 and I’ve delivered Kalimpura for 2012 publication and, well, here we are. It’s not that Tor and I have parted ways. It’s not that we haven’t parted ways. We simply haven’t had the discussions, nor have I entered into discussions with any other trade publishers.

Some of this is my own doing, as I decided to write the Sunspin series as spec books rather than proposing them to Tor. Some of this is the cancer, which has stolen half my writing time in past two years, slowing down my ability to deliver a spec book in time to propose it to Tor, or anyone else, within my usual contract cycle. Longtime readers may recall that had I not experienced another metastasis this year, I had planned to write all three volumes of Sunspin by this fall. The book package would have been ready to go to market last summer, except for cancer.

And now, thanks to the travails of chemo and my resulting inability to execute on important revisions recommended by la agente, Sunspin‘s first volume won’t be ready to go to market before next February or March at the earliest. So I’m going to stay out of contract for quite some time to come, unless we take the rather unusual step of trying to sell on proposal plus unrevised draft.

All of which makes me feel very weird and insecure about my career. I’m in danger of missing the 2013 publishing cycle. I’m going to take a financial hit, to boot, simply because of delayed contract and payment timelines. But mostly, I worry about simply disappearing from view.

So I’ve got the out of contract blues, magnified by my cancer woes. And it doesn’t make me very happy. Another penalty of cancer, another thing being taken from me by this disease.

[links] Link salad wishes Dad a happy birthday

Endurance Sweepstakes! with a giveaway of my forthcoming book.

Amazon Signs Up Authors, Writing Publishers Out of has taught readers that they do not need bookstores. Now it is encouraging writers to cast aside their publishers. (Via several sources, including my Dad.)

What killed Steve Jobs?Pharyngula with more on Steve Jobs’ cancer. (Thanks to [info]feorag.)

Fusobacterium Linked To Colorectal Cancer

The Quest for the Holy Grail of Storage – RAM Cloud

Movie: Approaching Light Speed APOD with an interesting little video about the optical effects of relativistic speeds approaching c.

Alfred Hitchcock and Angry Birds

Rare Keaton Music Typewriter — (Snurched from Dark Roasted Blend.)

California Velocipede Map — An 1895 bicycle touring map of the Golden State.

Failing dreams: California faces its own Great DepressionIt is less than 20 miles from the pristine surfing beaches of the California coast to a scene of Third World deprivation.

The Rise of Crime-Sourcing — (Via David Goldman.)

How News Media and Blogs Have Eyed the Presidential Contenders During the First Phase of the 2012 Race — Your Liberal Media, fluffing the conservatives as always. This is excellent news for John McCain!

Rick Perry officials spark revolt after doctoring environment reportScientists ask for names to be removed after mentions of climate change and sea-level rise taken out by Texas officials. This is exactly how the Bush administration handled these things, too. When the facts are biased against you, delete the facts. It’s a very Soviet approach to ideology, ironically enough. (Thanks to [info]danjite.)

For Bachmann, God and Justice Were Intertwined — Confidential to GOP in America: Freedom of religion means freedom from religion. Which decidedly protects you every bit as much as it protects the rest of us.

Democrats Court the Wall Street Protesters — Karl Rove in The Wall Street Journal. Before they go much further with this courtship, the president and other Democrats need to remember it’s always dangerous to associate with people who are just plain kooky. The mind boggles that Rove could say this with a straight face. Has he looked at the GOP base? Science denial? Christianism? The forced pregnancy movement? Gun psychosis? Those are the pillars of his own house. (Via Dispatches from the Culture Wars.)

?otD: Tuesday already?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo recovery)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 7.25 hours (fitful)
Weight: 218.4
Currently reading: The Star Fraction by Ken MacLeod

[links] Link salad for a Double Ten

Reading Recommendation: Endurance, by Jay Lake — Brenda Cooper with a brief, positive review.

[info]garyomaha asks an interesting question about parenting

Dali interviewed by Mike Wallace — A bit of video from 1958.

Steve Jobs Was A Jerk. Good For Him.

Bruce Schneier On The Security Mirage — On the difference between feeling secure and being secure.

Terrorism Can’t be Taken out and Shot — On targeted assassinations and people who believe they’re fighting for God. Ah, the manifold benefits of absolute righteousness. Not to mention endless occupations of foreign countries.

Tea and empathy — Roger Ebert on the difference between the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street. Interesting, thoughtful read, as all of his posts are.

?otD: Got Sun Yat-Sen?

Writing time yesterday: 2.75 hours (1,700 words of outline plus WRPA)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 7.5 hours (fitful)
Weight: 217.2
Currently reading: The Sky Road by Ken MacLeod