June 4th, 2007

new year

Lying down on the sofa

Too many things happened last month. I was trying to take it easy, but then there was my class in Chicago, a meeting to plan for the Open Art Studios, a zine deadline, and WisCon, all within a week. Nonetheless, my reading for the month included Ready for Anything and Getting Things Done; the Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen, so you can see how I have been studying on it. Also read a number of things from the Tiptree list, particularly the winners, Half Life by Shelley Jackson (which is about a two-headed woman, more or less, as well as the multiple nature of identities) and The Orphan’s Tales, Vol. I: In the Night Garden by Catherynne M. Valente, a wonderfully super-nested postmodern Arabian Nights. I love to find books that fit the canon of classic tales -- my canon anyway.

I forget if I have mentioned I spent a lot of time lying down during WisCon, and since then. I read three out the five slender books I purchased there, and then more from the library. I read Under the Penitence by Mary Gentle (and have more of hers lined up), and after the Pat Cadigan panel I read her Tea from an Empty Cup, and for fun a proof copy I got cheap of Black Feathers by Cecilia Tan. Also I have not yet finished Andrea Hairston's Mindscapes which is pretty damn funky weird shit, short stories in St Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell, more short stories in Fragile Things by Neil Gaiman, and The Economy of Prestige; Prizes, Awards, and the Circulation of Value which is the sort of thing I like to read in the morning to get all the brain cells firing.

This week I read The Last Witchfinder by James Morrow which is actually historical fiction, including Ben Franklin as a character and Isaac Newton in a walk on; The Green Glass Sea by Ellen Klages, also historical fiction about Los Alamos in 1943 and 1944; and today I read Farthing by Jo Walton, which is a WW2 era detective novel except for the alternate history part where Britain has fought Hitler to a standstill and the US never entered the war. All I highly recommend. Not much else doing, except for building up my walks every day. Taking it easy. Right.

This evening we watched Cymbeline on DVD from the library, which has everything, evil stepmothers and aging kings and lost children and girls dressed as boys and devious Italians and gore and battles and bedroom farce and raving lunatics (not to mention Helen Mirren) and a big drawing room scene at the end where the whole thing is explained in case you missed some bits while the snacks and drinks were being served. It really had a more exciting plot than the Pirate Master, but then it had the advantage of a writer too, who went just a bit overboard.