The end of NaNoWriMo 2011 is upon us, and I’m especially sad because this has been my favorite year for several reasons, including local meetups and the fact that I was redrafting, not first-drafting, so my word count was cheatishly easy to get. No shame, no regrets. It looks like we’ll be keeping up regular write-ins (or more properly, “talk-ins”), so I’m delighted about that. NaNo books die lonely and embarrassed in February, but NaNo friendships live forever.

Speaking of dying lonely and embarrassed, every one of my tomato plants has gone on to the great tomato patch in the sky, where the sun is warm and there are no aphids anywhere, not even one. The rest of my plants still have to deal with the darkness of this sinful earth. I showered the aphids off the jalapenos, so hopefully they’ll keep producing delicious delicious peppers, and I trimmed the strawberry back to its freshest, darkest green leaves. It’s never looked so good. In Lime Tree Country, they are celebrating The Feast of Drop All My Leaves and Freak Out Amanda, which I celebrate in the orthodox tradition, Forty Days of Go Ahead and See If I Care. I do need to de-aphid that one too, though. And pick its limes. I was serious when I said I was determined not to let them rot on the branch, but equally serious about having no idea when to pick them. They’re golf balls now. I guess that’s almost ripe? How am I supposed to know when they’re ripe when the final fruit is also supposed to be green? It’s like a caterpillar going into a cocoon and coming out another caterpillar.

I bought three new rescue plants: two decorative peppers and a pot of tiny roses, all of which I immediately repotted and fed and watered and sang to and knitted tiny sweaters for. I’m hoping they do all right despite the fact that it’s already pretty much winter. I’ve got them far, far away from the aphids.

My story went up at Redstone, along with one by David Tallerman, hooray, and I made a major sale that I’m holding close to the chest until the contract comes through, which is being held off until the line edits are done, so in the meantime I am quietly Snoopy dancing over here and cannot tell anyone why. I will report with more details when I am able. Honestly, I may never stop with the details, once they get started.

I continue to move toward my goal of watching every horror movie on Earth; recent acquisitions include Village of the Damned (1995), The Shrine, Insidious, Scary Movie, Ghost Story, The Thing, Paranormal Activity, Cronos, Trollhunter, Gothika, and Lake Mungo. Also another six or so forgettable slashers not worth mentioning. If you have any opinions on any of those you’re achin’ to get out, just let me know. I have things to say about all of them, but don’t want to bore anyone with a long checklist-litany. That’s what I have plants for.


It’s getting wintery, so that means it’s plant migration time. I brought the eggplant, herbs, and both jalapeno pots inside, but left outside the tomatoes, sweet potatoes, strawberry, and tiny nubs of benighted kale (which grew back, then got eaten down by caterpillars AGAIN, and are once more growing back). My living rooms is currently a jungle. I see nothing wrong with this.

The limes aren’t ripe yet. (Probably?) Ancient begonia clings to life. Last year’s Christmas tree is alive enough to be this year’s Christmas tree. Cool! I found aphids on the jalapeno plants. UNCOOL.

Since my last blog post, I’ve sold stories to two anthologies and Redstone Science Fiction, and had poems go up in Enchanted Conversation and Candle in the Attic Window. My flash piece In Memoriam also went up on Daily Science Fiction. (Links an’ at on my bibliography.) I like this autumn. It’s exciting.

I will be participating in NaNoWriMo 2011, in my own cheaty way, because I’m addicted to the forums and always meet fantastic people during the November sprint. I’ll also be tweeting heavily–not word counts and encouragement, because the whole world already has that covered, but USEFUL stuff, like “Never have your character rescued by an outside force when you could have them escape on a dinosaur” and “If you must include exposition, always try to have it delivered by a talking skeleton.” I’m helpful like that.

Anyone else doing NaNo, fielding good publishing news, or going through the agony of the harvest?

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