August 14th, 2007

yeff yahoo avatar

the writing, such as it is, needs something more

The writing has been a little slow since returning from vacation. I think the long break where I didn't do much writing while in Oregon or Hawaii is making it tough for me to get some writing speed going. The personal stuff and the diary entries are taking away time and attention as well (and deservedly so).

I also feel like what I'm producing isn't really very good. I finished off "Witness" but I wasn't too pleased with the result. That's a shame because I really liked the concept of the story and the fact that I was going to use it to challenge myself and get away from my tendencies.

I've started into "Alien Across the Hall" and I have mixed feelings. It's going rather slow, and is a real grind, and I'm alternately liking it and thinking it sucks. I'll still get it done within the next couple days and then revise it before sending it to SacSpec for the August meeting.

In general, I feel like I'm on the edge of a chasm or a gap and if I can just get over the gap I'll be in a place I want to be with respect to story quality and results. I'm just not sure how to get over the gap. I think professional-level feedback would help, so I'm struggling until I can get some. My Critters numbers are too low for me to submit stories (should I take a zero reset yet again - I feel like I'm abusing the privledge), same for my SFF numbers, there's no cons in sight, and Viable Paradise is still off in the distance.

I do have SacSpec meeting later this month, and I was emailing with Ken Scholes and he gracefully offered to read something, and Mary Rosenblum might be willing to do a critique trade at the end of the month, and I still have the pending Bruce Taylor offer to read something, and VP is in seven weeks (yay!). So perhaps it's time to stop whining, just keep cranking and get things out to people. I should also make plans to attend Orycon in November.

The plan for the rest of August and September:
- finish and revise "Alien Across the Hall" and send to SacSpec for August
- finish revision of "Game of Chase" and send to Bruce Taylor
- do first draft of "One Night with the Picture Lady"
- read some more Ken Scholes stories, pick something and send it to him (perhaps "Hunters" or "Samsara" or "Old Town")?
- revise something ("Walls of Stars"? "Samsara"?) and trade with Mary Rosenblum
- do first draft of "Real Enuf 4 U"
- send something to SacSpec for September
- send something to Orycon for writers workshop ("Old Town"? "Samsara"?)
- send something to WOTF for Q4/2007
- (opportunistic) write "Real Space", "Second Alien Battle of Mackey's Bar", and "Now and Then"
- go to Viable Paradise!

Time to get cracking.
yeff yahoo avatar

going to Portland (Vancouver, WA) Wed-Thurs, need a cafe

I'm heading out to Portland Wednesday 15 and Thursday 16 for a two-day meeting with the team at HP Vancouver. The style of the trip is "go in early Wed morn, meet all day Wed, team dinner Wed, meet all day Thurs, go home."

So, about the only free chunk of time for writing will be Wednesday night after team dinner. I'm currently searching for a good, funky coffeehouse in the Vancouver, WA area that's open late and has tasty baked treats. We'll see if I can find one.

UPDATE: The current decision is to go to the Borders on SE 160th in Vancouver after dinner, then off to the hotel (Heathman Lodge) for a late late checkin. If I want to check in first, I might find a Barnes & Noble or another Borders. One colleague mentioned the Rimsky Korsakoffeehouse, which looks pretty hip but is too far away for that one evening. Maybe next time.
yeff yahoo avatar

the "smartcar" pays a visit to Sacramento

The smart fortwo cars were in our area over the weekend. They set up shop at the Whole Foods just catty-corner from the neighborhood. The line was too long so we passed on the test drive.

I have to say they were extremely cute. I thought they were the all-electric neighborhood car, but it turns out they're gas-powered. Mileage is a surprisingly low 40 miles per gallon - I would have thought it would be much higher.

After this, the tour is off to SanFran/SanJose for the next couple weekends then to Seattle then to Portland. Pay a visit if it's around. It reminds me of the "Le Car" (aka the Renault 5) in France. Video of commercial on YouTube.