Columbusiana & Excuses

Home from World Fantasy, but still not done with the novel. Explaining to others that you are "stuck in mid-climax" is confusing for everyone involved. So if I mumbled at you/said random things that didn't make any sense/seemed distracted and mildly crazy then it's not because I don't love you, but because interacting with others at this stage of a draft is difficult at best, unwise at worst. I did write about 5K on the road and in the hotel, and I'm *thisclose* to being done. No, really. I will finish this week. I. Will.

And the extremely wise Holly Black fixed my nutshell pitch in five minutes of gabbing, which I much appreciated. I find synopsizing PAINFUL.

The convention was a bit disorganized (we had to white out no show name badges and sharpie our names on because we registered on site–which was an adventure in and of itself), but as full of the wonderful people who are my favorites as always. Friday night we grabbed dinner with Ted Chiang (says the LA Times: "patient but ruthless"), Genevieve Valentine (whose reading the next day from her forthcoming steampunk post-apocalyptic circus novel Mechanique gave me shivers), and Kelly Barnhill (her upcoming MG looks great) at a diner called Knead that was quite good (cheesy bread!). Then we moseyed back to the mass signing and the bar where we saw lots and lots and lots of beloved people; and hey, I even got to finally meet Bill Schafer, aka the evil genius of Subterranean Press. Then I stayed up too late with Liz Gorinsky, Charlie Jane Anders and Annalee Newitz–rabble-rousers all. Saturday Christopher read from his D&D novel and the story he has in Kelly and Gavin's STEAMPUNK! YA antho from Candlewick (out next year), and that night we had dinner at Martini with Chris Barzak and Tony, Rick Bowes, Holly, Steve Berman and Dora Goss–including mozzarella made AT THE MOMENT OF ORDER and an after excursion to the world's best ice cream shop (anise and fennel seed; I shall dream of you forever). And then I stayed up way too late with a rotating cadre of peoples.

The awards yesterday were a fabulous ending to the weekend and I quibble with none of them. I was especially pleased by Susan Groppi's win for Strange Horizons (timely given today's announcement) and Karen Joy Fowler's for her brilliant story "The Pelican Bar," which I consider an instant classic.

As usual, there were many people I got to see, but not nearly enough of. Actually, scratch that, because I didn't get to see anyone enough. Far too many names to name. I miss you all terribly.

Also as usual, being surrounded by so many great people is a complete energy boost. I'm glad to be home and back at work. So now to finish this book, and juggle a carnival of other projects. Which is to say, it's likely to be thin pickings here this week and next (although a massive hangovers post is coming at some point). Ciao.

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