Tag: personal

Nebulas and darkness notice

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Nebulas and darkness notice

(Picture: Fran Wilde, Navah Wolfe, Alyssa Wong and me)

Just a quick note that I’m still around but completely completely buried in explody real life (aka “not serious, but time consuming” events).

I had a lovely time at the Nebulas; and finally got to see Mad Max: Fury Road with Navah Wolfe, Fran Wilde, Alyssa Wong and her boyfriend Don (and it was great, OMG. First off, the last movie I saw was Interstellar, which a. wasn’t *very* good from my point of view, and b. was a long time ago! *sigh* toddlers). Now I feel like I’m all caught up with what everyone was saying on the internet! Also, it’s a fantastic 2-hour chase movie with a couple great leads (Charlize Theron is badass awesome, and Tom Hardy too, in a different way!).

And then there was this:

(Kat Tanaka Opoknik, Alyssa Wong, Ken Liu, Liu Cixin, and me)

Yes, there was tailcoat goodness :) (for those who haven’t been following the adventures of the tailcoat: I basically got it for my book launch, aka “cosplaying my own characters”, in this case Selene, the head of House Silverspires and a dab hand with tailcoats, men’s clothes and general bad-assness. This was my first serious spin with it, and it went very well. Except I had to google how to tie a cravat because it’s been so long since I last did it ^^)

Didn’t actually win a Nebula, but had a great time at the banquet (Sheila Williams organises awesome table seating!) and was very happy for the winners.

Now I’m back in Paris, looking with apprehension at the mass of things I’m supposed to be doing (do not overcommit do not overcommit etc.), and gearing up for the summer before book release (*gulp*). More when my head is above water (hahaha who am I kidding).

RIP Terry Pratchett

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Terry Pratchett has died, and I feel like there’s a big hole in the world. I didn’t know him personally, but I knew his books–I taught myself English (and puns on British life) with the Discworld (one of the very first books I bought when we moved to the UK was Hogfather, still a perennial favourite), and came to the fantasy and science fiction bookshelves of Waterstone’s because that was where you could find his books. His books followed me from teenager reader to adult writer of SF, and I always enjoyed reading the latest one (and I did the embarrassed fangirl thing at Interaction in Glasgow, too). It’s hard to state how much his writings have shaped me and what I write today.

My condolences to his family and friends. The world is a darker, hollower place without him.

Year-End review

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Year-End review

The brief version…

I wrote a bunch of short fiction. I sold a bunch of it (and “The Days of the War, as Red as Blood, as Dark as Bile” will be reprinted in Gardner Dozois’s Year’s Best Science Fiction, which makes me very happy as it’s a story I’m very proud of). I finished 2014 with three pretty big sales (I don’t think I’m allowed to make announcements yet; I’ll do so when I have permission). I also sneaked in the completion of my Xuxa novella, “The Citadel of Weeping Pearls”, under the wire; and made a pretty big conceptual addition to the Xuxa universe (basically the local order of Bene Gesserits, which should be fun to write).

“Heaven Under Earth” was a Tiptree Honor nominee; and “The Waiting Stars” won a Nebula and was a Hugo and Locus Award finalist. I also had my first editorial gig, as a reprint curator for Strange Horizons, who published “Chambered Nautilus” by Elisabeth Vonarburg; and I published a print edition of “On a Red Station, Drifting”, which has been doing pretty well considering it’s an old book and a lot of people already have the ebook version.

I was a GoH at Mircon and had a lovely time (see my report here); I also had a lovely (but slightly more hectic) time at Loncon3 (aka, “we’re not taking a baby under a year old to a con ever again”); and a great writing retreat with friends in Brittany.

And, hum, I wrote a novel set in post apocalyptic sort-of-Belle Epoque Paris, with Fallen angels, a Vietnamese Immortal with a grudge and rival Houses fighting over the ruins of Notre Dame, and I sold it to Gollancz for an August 2015 publication. (and I’m still kind of shocked that, not only have people signed up to read it on goodreads, but that it also got pre ordered on amazon by a bunch other people).

The snakelet turned one, and I learnt that a lot of infant life is running after the baby; and I got one of my recipes featured in the cooking section of The Guardian. I think that’s about it in terms of big events :p

I’m kind of writing this entire entry in a state of shock, to be honest. Thanks everyone for a great year, and see you in 2015.

(I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fact that it’s not all positive and that 2014 was in some ways a very sucky year. Friends left, way too early; and others got very bad news–and sometimes I did feel like I want to hit something very, very hard. Cancer in particular can go f%%% itself)

Shopping for baby clothes

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Today is the first day of the summer sales in Paris, so naturally I braved the crowd was foolish enough to drop by a baby clothes’ shop to pick up a hat for the snakelet. The following conversation is depressingly familiar when buying clothes:
Me: “Do you have this model in size 51?”
Saleswoman: “Let me look. It’s for a–” she peers at the hat I’m holding up (red with stripes)–“girl, right?”
Me, biting down on a desire to lecture her on gender essentialism, “Boy, actually.”
Saleswoman, turning to a bin where everything is some shade of blue, “Hum, I’m not too sure–”
Me, pointing to another bin where everything is a shade of pink or red, “Maybe in this bin?”
Saleswoman: “That’s for–”
Me: “I know. Do you have anything?”
She looks at me, at the hat, and at the bin again. “No, everything is pink, I’m sorry.”
At which point I gave up and went foraging into the darn bin for girls’ hats myself. They had another red hat, which was actually the right size for the snakelet–I snagged it immediately.
Seriously. This is for a baby who’s not yet a year old. I can predict some intense frustration as the snakelet grows up…

Brief update

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In case you had any doubt, not much writing is happening–snakelet is a bit of a full time job…

Desultorily planning my novel (I know how to fix my plot problem, I just don’t have the time to tackle the chapter–each time I sit down too write there’s a scream from the bedroom…).

PSA re email

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I’ve just discovered that there’s emails I haven’t answered to, so if you sent anything to me from 1st Sept to 10th Sept and are still waiting on an answer, would you mind poking me? I didn’t have email access while in hospital and obviously misplaced a couple things when we got home with the snakelet…

PSA: off the grid, again

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Just a quick note to inform those who don’t know already of the birth of the snakelet last week–which in turn explains my continued radio silence. We’re all well, but overwhelmed–as those things happen :)
Blog’s going dark for a while, though I may update with the occasional rant…