TWEET TWEET

09:10 I am the Emperor of home-made ginger and apricot biscuits. Yum!
09:14 @thesciphishow Fantastic news! Great to see Sci Phi Journal kicking on! Best of luck with the new issue.
12:54 Ah, the joys of youth, when ‘gourmet eating’ meant getting chips with your spaghetto bolognaise…
12:54 Here’s a hint for aspiring novelists– when ordering lunch, make sure it’s something you can eat with one hand
12:55 my Twitterank is 4.41! twitterank.com/?u=leebattersby@gmail.com
19:10 The Corpse-Rat King has passed 43 000 words

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ENGAGE SATISFIED MODE….

The Corpse-Rat King passed 43 000 words tonight, 29 300 of them since the start of Nanowrimo. What’s most satisfying is how much of the plot I still have left in front of me- with Napoleone’s Land, it felt like a struggle to come up with enough words to fill a full-length novel, but the lessons I learned from the experience are playing themselves out much more easily this time around, which bodes well for when I finish this first draft and go back to do the Napoleone rewrites.

What’s most pleasing is the feeling that these are 43 000 saleable words. It’s one thing to slap words down on a page and pass a distant finish line, but unless you write with the aim of publication, that’s all you’re doing– slapping words down. I may not be winning the Nanowrimo ‘race’, but I’m gonna sell mine!*

The part of me that has been resisting the change in focus from short stories to novels is getting smaller and smaller.

*This, of course, has no bearing on whether other Nanites will sell their words– only a mug would bet against the likes of Simon Haynes, Stephen Dedman, and Lyn. But the egomoster don’t play like that……

ASIF REVIEWS CANTERBURY

Canterbury 2100, the Agog Press anthology containing stories by both myself and Lyn, amongst others, has been reviewed over at Australian Specfic in Focus, which has very positive things to say about both stories.

The Metawhore’s Tale is described as fascinating, sordid, sad, and, ultimately, wonderful; while Lyn’s The Conductor’s Tale is an appropriate concluding story that neatly rounds out the whole set.

Nifty!

TWEET TWEET

  • 07:51 38 years old today, and I don’t feel a day over 90
  • 13:33 Just so you know, it is entirely possible that Madness’ 1996 album “Wonderful” is the greatest pop album in the history of the entire world
  • 13:34 Of course, we all know that Brian May is the greatest guitarist who has ever lived, so that goes without saying

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BECAUSE I’M A TWIT

I have succumbed to the modern age, because the SFWA Bulletin told me to….

I’m on Twitter. My username, in a burst of creativity, is leebattersby.

Feel free to link and I promise I’ll be pithy in a Steven Wright kind of way.

(Sings in his best Phil Collins voice– I will follow you, will you follow me, I will something something, la da dum dee dee…)

According to Loud Twitter, my tweets should show up here every 24 hours. They’re not so far. Accursed twenty first century…..

NANOWRIMO, ACT ONE

Always remember
The tenth of November
Coz if you don’t you’ll be standing in Kings Park at dawn a day early wondering where the hell everyone else is.

Also, today marks the one-third mark in this year’s Nanowrimo. Keen-eyed readers will remember that I’m giving it a go this year, for the first time. (Anyone who wishes to link up with my progress on the site itself can look for me under the username CRKIng). The idea is to write 50 000 words of a novel (okay, strictly speaking,a 50K word novel, but I’m playing slightly differently. It’s my prerogative as a woman…) in 30 days, an average of 1667 words per day over the month. I’ve chosen to use the time to continue working on the first draft of The Corpse-Rat King, my second novel, which had encountered a little bit of stallage in recent days. The hope was that committing to the project would help kick-start the work again.

So how am I doing?

As of today, I have completed 22 752 words, approximately 45 and a bit percent of the target total. More importantly, when added to the 11 689 I had already completed, it gives me a grand total of 34 441 words under my belt, enough that I can be pretty happy with where the book is heading and start thinking about the path I want the middle of the novel to take (I have a pretty firm idea of the final third, which, amongst other things, means I write novels a little bit like Underpants Gnomes make money…)

Tonight I am going to reward myself with a night off, and I shall eat ice cream and watch documentaries about dinosaurs. Or whatever Lyn wants 🙂

HAPPY…. (creak)….. BIRTHDAY…. (groan)… TO…. I NEED A REST

I turn 38 tomorrow.

To be honest, it’s kind of snuck up on me this year, and I find myself wholly unprepared. The family, however, are far more prepared than I, so last night all six of them (including Cassie, and her boyfriend Mark, who we met for the first time) took me out to dinner, where they presented me with a new Tim Powers novel for my reading pleasure (Three Days to Never) and forced me to eat until parts of my insides seceded in protest. Much big news was revealed, and although I can’t discuss it just yet, those on Lyn’s LJ flist will know of which I speak. Suffice to say, many gasteds were flabbered, but I, for one, am pleased as punch.

Moreover, in what is becoming, at least for me, an enjoyably morbid tradition, I can now present to you the list of far more famous and/or talented people than I who I have now outlived:

  • Lou Gehrig (All together now: Lou Gehrig, died of Lou Gehrig’s Disease. How’d he not see that coming?)
  • Jam Master Jay
  • Medgar Evers
  • Michael Hutchence
  • Bobby Darin
  • Sal Mineo
  • Robert Burns
  • Colin Clive
  • Samuel Taylor-Coleridge
  • Marie Antoinette
  • Raphael
  • Arthur Rimbaud
  • Irving Thalberg
  • Vincent Van Gogh

Does it say something about me that I’m fine with the idea of being older than the likes of Rimbaud, Burns and Queen Marie, but being older than Michael Hutchence makes me feel like a fat old bloke?

MICHAEL CRICHTON

News has filtered down the Battpipe that Michael Crichton died today aged 66. I wasn’t a fan of his work, although he produced some works that have become minor classics within the genre—most notably Jurassic Park and The Andromeda Strain, in terms of novels, and the movie Westworld as director.

As a writer he was very much the product of a mindset that wrote with one eye on the film adaptation, as a quick look at his bibliography will show: apart from Jurassic Park, at least seven more of his novels were filmed. I generally found his work to be mechanical and somewhat soulless, but there’s no doubting that he was a major figure in the SF/Hollywood amalgam, so his presence will undoubtedly be missed by the genre as a whole.

HOW TO ENJOY A CHILD-FREE WEEKEND PART 2

  1. Sleep in
  2. Eat breakfast while reading blogs
  3. Write
  4. Go out for lunch
  5. Watch Hull almost complete the comeback of the season but go down to Man U 4-3 in the game of the year so far
  6. Write
  7. Watch half an hilarious documentary on macrophilia (Go on, look it up. You know you want to)
  8. Laugh ass off at wife’s face while watching documentary of macrophilia
  9. Drive down to pick up kids, singing at top of voice to Madness songs the entire way
  10. Bring kids home
  11. Watch Muppet Show while eating dinner
  12. Put kids to bed
  13. Change picture on blog
  14. Buy wine
  15. Drink it
  16. Watch rest of hilarious documentary on macrophilia
  17. Watch Top Gear African Special
  18. Wipe tears from eyes
  19. Offer multitude of praises to BBC Knowledge for saving me from weeks of watching pale, crap Australian version of Top Gear
  20. Blog
  21. Bed

HOW TO LOSE FANS AND IRRITATE MOVIE GOERS

So Lyn and I got out to see a flick today. And because we’re Simon Pegg fans, not to mention Jeff Bridges fans, the choice was obvious.

My word, How to Lose Friends and Alienate People is a disappointing movie. There came a point, somewhere towards the inevitable turning-the-plot-for-home moment, when I actually thought “God, I remember when Simon Pegg was funny.” I know this movie is based on a biography. I know that what I was watching was, by and large, supposed to be based on real events. But gawd all bloody mighty, did it have to be so obvious? So thuddingly unoriginal? When I know the outcome of each scene, each character arc, each subplot, before the setup of each damn thing even gets underway…… and it was billed as a comedy, it was promoted as a comedy, it said ‘funny’ on the posters…. It isn’t. It just really, really isn’t.

Simon Pegg and Jeff Bridges are both excellent actors, but watching this movie, you wouldn’t know it. Okay, so Bridges paid his rent in Iron Man. I wasn’t expecting Shakespeare. And okay, Pegg did a director mate a favour and plodded his way through the utterly second rate Run, Fatboy Run. But what’s their excuse for this one? Add Kirsten Dunst, who extends her ouvre as an actress of no special interest whatsoever, and the whole thing felt like what my mother used to call a Tuesday Movie– Tuesday afternoons, half-price for pensioners, beats being at home but not by much.

In all honesty, I got more laughs from the trailer for Four Holidays, And that’s a Vince Vaughan movie……

HOW TO ENJOY A CHILD-FREE WEEKEND PART 1

  1. Stay up until midnight the night before
  2. Sleep in
  3. Mooch about
  4. Go out for a pancake breakfast and end up having a doughnut instead
  5. Write
  6. Go to the markets
  7. Buy fruit without slapping the hand of a single person under (or over) the age of seven
  8. Eat take away for lunch
  9. Watch an unintentionally humorous documentary about the link between death metal and Satanism (Um, ‘Necrobutcher’? If the Dark Lord really is all-powerful, couldn’t he have done something about your receding hairline? And, you know, given you a chin?)
  10. Write
  11. Go to the cinema and watch a flick in the middle of the day
  12. Write*
  13. Potter about in the garden until dark
  14. Eat pizza, cheesecake and beer for dinner
  15. Watch cheesy documentary about vampires without single interruption for hugs, nightmares, toilet visits, or drinks of water
  16. Blog
  17. Bed

*3074 words, since you ask…

THE STORY WITH NO NAME CONTINUES

As mentioned earlier, I’ve just finished penning my contribution to Nameless, the fab and groovy contest Horrorscope are running, based around a Narrative Corpse– a serial short story written by several different people. My bit has just been posted here.

And you can see the full thing going on here. Scroll down the bottom and have a look at the prizes– they’re shit hot, and were it not for being on the contributor list, I’d be entering and beating you all to them.

Next up is one Battersby, Lyn. Couldn’t you just die waiting to find out where she takes it? 🙂