New Foreigner Book!


a few hardcovers and pbs available from Closed Circle, signed. Latest: Moonlover and the Fountain of Blood, Jane Fancher short story. Chernevog, part 2 of the Rusalka trilogy co-written by CJ and Jane; and Orion's Children, a tetralogy from Lynn.

Entertaining the Night Fury, aka Shu…

…who loves to stand up and claw at the images on my telly…
Or drive me berserk wanting food, grabbing my ankle, howling at me as I get up for a cup of coffee—

I tell you, devising something to keep a half-Bengal busy is a challenge. Smart. Very.

I got this puzzlebox for kittehs, CatAmazing, from Amazon, just a cardboard box. And I put some kitty treats into it. He can fish one out, with some work. He comes in here begging for treats, he’s going to work for it. 😉 Heh. Good for his disposition, that hunter’s brain.

Well, half the mouth is in great shape…

Sincerely, it feels great except for the resultant headache. Four deadening shots and a major cleanup, and I spent yesterday face down in the bean dip, and today am energy-short and headachy, but I’m actually looking forward to Oct 3, when we get the other side. THis has been overdue, since I couldn’t find a good dentist, but now have one. In January, they’re going to do, we think, an implant.

Working on a short piece right now…an Alliance-Union history.

In a bit of mental attic rearranging as I prepare to enter the Alliance-Union universe for a new book—I decided—why not do a piece for Closed Circle that encapsulates the history behind it. It’s a short story, but sort of a fictional history sort of story that some of you may like, that will at present planning not be part of the book, just a stand-alone bridge from us to there.

Emergence is finished!

Got it! Jane is now doing a continuity read.
I’m consulting notes on our next project. I have a notebook which is one of those ‘what would you grab if there were a fire?’ sort of items, which went missing—it’s my notes. Names, places, timeline—-and it was missing. Searched the trunk, found my collection of Dark Shadows dvds, in the ‘guilty pleasure’ department, and then searched the closet, various boxes, the dresser—I mean, like, oh–dear!
We have of course redone floors, moved things—I would never throw it out, but — it could be buried anywhere.

I’d lent it to Jane on some question about next project, and bless her, she had faithfully kept it right by her workstation, ready whenever I might call for it.

You may wonder why the word count inches along and then flies toward the end…

I outline, not your typical school outline, but sometimes bits and pieces of conversation, events, notes, etc, which I erase as I move along, so the total word count both shrinks and expands unpredictibly, sometimes so that even I don’t have a real sense where I am. Stories take as many words as it takes to tell them, and while I have an idea how long a book should be, density also affects it. Now we’re down to almost no outline left, and things happening that were intended to happen, without more outline getting written. We’re getting fairly close to the end and I know what the end is, but this one has just worked out oddly, a story that’s going to answer some puzzles and give you others…

Happy birthday to me!

We had breakfast at the waffle place, crashed for an hour, and now Jane is making my birthday present, a ‘happy coat’, or short kimono-type wrap, because the fan in my working space is pretty energetic, and I’d be comfy if I had a light wrap. So that is what is happening today. We are going to game a bit. And watch a movie tonight. And maybe go out to supper for something other than spaghetti.

7.25 minutes on the swinging machine…

I laid out because of the dental work, but I’ll tell you, I had a moment in the garden that machine pretty well paid for itself. One of those nasty things that happens to you as you get older is that where YOU think you’ve lifted your feet to is not where you’ve REALLY lifted your feet to…meaning you can misstep or trip much more easily, particularly if you’re out of shape.

Well, there’s this rock—must be somebody’s escaped pet rock, because it almost daily turns up on the garden path, and this time it was complicated by a looped back garden hose and a prone but branchless extracted oak sapling we decided to replace with a dogwood.

I hit the damn rock, lost my balance, and as you may recall, our garden paths have basalt chunks as edges, so if you’ve run out of gravel walkway, you have to step over that and hope not to put your foot in a hole under the juniper branches…I lost my balance and did a zig-zag dance over obstacles vaguely like NFL trainees over a course of tires. Unscathed.

Exercise may cause pain—but it can save you from it. Couldn’t have done that a week ago, and those basalt chunks are sharp, nasty things to hit on landing. I am happily continuing on the exercise thingie.

A day after….doing well.

I’ve gotten by on Advil, no problems. I can have hot coffee today, and I can help Jane shove furniture around (prep for the garage sale.)

The next appointment is in 3 weeks, to get the stitches out. Then close upon that, a deep cleaning (scaling) on 1/4 of my mouth, to be followed by other such. 3 to 6 months on, given the bone graft was successful, I get an implant to replace the problem tooth. They were able to save 1/3 of the bridge, which is now a crown. So we’re good on that.

Had smoke the last two days, a fire near Spangle, which is downslope from us, so we got it at ground level. Skies are blue today and we hope they got the fire out.

Making progress on the book today, after all the disruption. I don’t think I should go back on the exercise machine for a couple of days.

All’s well, at least. Writing is moving, despite all the interruptions. During this book I’ve had cataract so bad it interfered with focus, many eye exams, two eye surgeries, a trip to Chicago, two root canals, and now this latest, and I can now see what I’m doing and be somewhat confident I have a dentist I can trust, so—all better! But I need to get this book done.

Dental work accomplished..,

Extraction and bone graft…3 stitches. The pain was minimal, really. The cuff for the blood pressure monitor hurt worse than the extraction. Bone graft (they pour bone powder in and stitch it up) no pain.

Waiting at the pharmacy while a driver with no driver’s license for id wants narcotics—well, annoying. Waiting through this while the numbing agent wears off, less fun.

I am home now with 3 Advil and a Tylenol, and a bottle of codeine if I need it, and it’s just short of noon, from a 9:10 appointment. [25 min of which was waiting for the doc to finish explaining something to a particularly chatty patient.)

All is well. Not ow, yet, but probably soon. For two days I dine on yogurt and ice cream and only iced coffee and oj. Life could be worse. I had an extraction 50 years ago, and that one, yes, was nasty. This was just real smooth, and more uncomfortable than painful.

New ‘toy’…

Some of you who were at Shejicon may have remarked that I was moving a little slowly, a little uncertainly—in point of fact the years of sitting at a keyboard have taken a heavy toll since we gave up figure skating: just years and years of not-walking, not-doing, sitting moving only my fingers.

I’d gotten to the point where stairs were a worry, little 3-step stairs without a hand-rail. One bad fall and I could be in a world of limitation, which would make it even worse.

I don’t have time or energy to run off to the gym; we tried that. Weather, parking, just the daily disruption…so that fell by the wayside.

We do try to walk—but hot weather, rain, snow, ice, what-not, again back to immobility.

Jane is experiencing the same thing: pain that limits mobility.

Mom had had an exerciser she never used: she was just never inclined. She’d always say, “I get enough exercise doing housework.” But time catches up with that. And I don’t want that to happen. I like moving. I like climbing things and doing things.

So I started reading reviews on this thing, a Gazelle Edge. As machines go, it’s not that expensive. It’s no-impact. It’s about the size of a coffee table. It increases stride and balance and restores your walking rhythm. Zing! yes. Two areas needing help. It’s from Amazon. Returnable if not doable.

So I did. Assembling this mass of pipe and airline cable is rather like wrestling with a praying mantis, but we did it. We tried it.

I could only go one minute when I started. One minute, and the arms burn, the shoulders burn, the legs get tired. You never take a step—you swing your legs, while standing, sort of like scuffing through snow, and the path of swing corrects tendencies of knees to knock in or ankles to veer off straight—in other words, it puts you into good alignment, the way skating does. You can bend your knees, or not. It has much the benefit of swimming, but requires less effort, while you still get the burn. It’s also dead silent and non-bouncy, so you can watch telly—and walk. Fast. I resolved to work one minute longer every day, and I’m, with a couple of days off for various reasons, up to six minutes. My target is an hour. Daily.

I’m now able to go up and down stairs without worry; Jane’s hip problem is improving. Tendons that were sore and losing elasticity are recovering. I’m walking with real steps. In a handful of days.

I think this machine is a definite winner. If I work it up even to half an hour a day, it’ll be a real, real help. Did I mention that exercise increases blood flow to the brain and you wake up and get back to work with more energy? Yep. Writing faster.