“Authorly” is a real word because I say so.

It’s been a lovely, sunny weekend here in Maryland, so of course I’ve spent most of the day indoors and doing my authorly duties. The paperback of Suicide is for Mortals is not quite ready, but I spent much of yesterday formatting a nice shiny final version, and I uploaded the new interior today. Once Createspace lets me check off some boxes, then I’ll order the proof copies to verify that it looks the way a paperback should.

If you subscribe to my mailing list, you will receive a short story as told by my character Scanlon Ness!

I have verified that Suicide is for Mortals is available at Smashwords and Barnes & Noble! And of course it’s always available on Kindle.

There’s a new page in the top menu: After the Resettlement, as told by “Professor” Julian Teng. This is another view of the After Rezarta world. Is Professor Teng an entirely reliable narrator? That’s a good question, but he’s always sincere.

Finally, the Suicide is for Mortals paperback giveaway is still happening. Winners will receive the nice shiny final version of the book. If you don’t have a Goodreads account, there’s no time like the present to sign up.

A Gentle Reminder That Writers Are Also Human

How  do I put this? The last few months have…sucked. I’m gonna take a little while here to piss and moan about how everything happened at once, how I’ve been working my ass off and been the last one to benefit from my labors, and how I have no support system. I remarked some days ago that I don’t remember how it feels not to be stressed. It’s right there in the subject line. The month of September is coming to an end, but I feel like it’s just barely the end of summer, because I’m thinking of the past several months as the Summer Of Having No Life. And that’s not a “have no life” in the fun sense of hanging around at home and blowing up Facebook in between watching movies and reading comic books. No, I don’t have the luxury of having that kind of “no life.” What has been keeping me from having a life?

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I don’t remember how it feels not to be stressed.

The last few months of my offline life have been ridiculous and absurd for reasons that I can’t explain right now because I still don’t have the time to write that long a post. Don’t worry, I’m okay! Good things are happening! But those good things have kept me tied up in such a way that today, I felt like I had to apologize to my co-workers for having been unable to work more late nights in the past couple of weeks. Just think about that for a second. I don’t get paid for extra hours, most of my co-workers don’t work nearly as many late nights as I do every summer, and yet I felt like I’d done something wrong by working no more than 45 hours per week.

With that in mind, I’m still not quite ready to unclench enough to write an interesting blog post, so I’ll leave you with a little meme. I haven’t been good about writing lately. The preceding paragraph should give you some clue as to why that is, but I miss feeling safe and rested enough to lose myself in my fictional worlds.

dontalwayswrite

The Most Interesting Man is the only meme who really gets me.

Just a tiny bit of news before I go: I’m officially done with Richard Dawkins. Gone. Good-bye. Lifetime member of the Nope List. There are some lines you do not cross. His latest round of shit-spraying is one of those things I’d like to blog about if I could get a chance to write in detail about anything, but for now, I can assure you that I am no longer interested in anything he has to say.

Apple, Y U do this?

I haven’t written here much lately, have I? It would be nice to say I’ve been diverted by something huge, like buying a house or planning a wedding, but, no. I’ve been busy with authoring duties, have made some effort towards learning a programming language, spending time with family and friends…

…let’s face it, I’m keeping a handle on my day job without killing anyone or setting anything on fire. That much is an all-encompassing endeavor.

Seriously, though, I have been doing other things while neglecting this blog, and that includes wrangling my second novel. Which brings me to my latest gripe: the new version of Apple Pages.

Several months ago, I set up a template in Pages for the print version of my urban fantasy. At the time, it had everything I needed, and I must say, it looked pretty good.

Last night, I opened it again to see if I could refine it any further. It still looks great, as long as you’re only scrolling through it one page at a time.

All the “facing pages” options are missing since I downloaded the new iWork suite.

Facing-pages options include having inside and outside margins (rather than just right and left) and arranging headers and footers according to whether the page is on the left or right. These are useful features for making books. These are the sort of subtle touches that make a book appear to be the work of professionals, rather than some smartass with a word processor and image editor on her Mac.

These features are now missing from Apple Pages. I’m not the only person to notice this.

This is an aggravation for a person who writes books and self-publishes. It’s possible that Apple will hear all the griping and return the facing-pages options to Pages in another update. It’s even possible they’ll do this before I’m ready to release my book. In the meantime, I have other options, none of which is as elegant as using Pages on my home laptop. I just started learning Scribus yesterday, which is great fun, but I don’t know how it would handle hundreds of pages of text in a single document.

Bradley Cooper, will you just write a freaking book?

The Words is the second movie I’ve seen in which Bradley Cooper plays a guy who wants to be a novelist but is having a difficult time getting started. In both movies, his character cheats in some way to get over the initial hump, but in Limitless, at least the creativity is his. Oh, and Limitless is not a waste of two perfectly good hours.

The lessons of The Words are, basically:

1. The publishing industry is so fucked up that it kind of, sort of, forces otherwise well-meaning writers to plagiarize.

2. Always save duplicate copies of your manuscript, even if you don’t keep them all in safe places.

Also: Jeremy Irons needs to learn a better American accent. Dude, if you don’t like the way we sound, then don’t play us in movies.

 

Elizabeth Wurtzel is a trainwreck. I can’t look away.

There is not enough booze in the world to deal with this.

Y’all had better appreciate this video; I was up until midnight filming, editing and uploading it. This morning was a shit show because I was so short on sleep.

Here are the selected highlights. Someone actually put these words together, and someone else actually decided to run them in a magazine and pay Ms. Wurtzel for her troubles.

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I blame Amanda Marcotte.

To all the visitors today reading my previous post about Elizabeth Wurtzel: I am now reading her latest word salad in NY Mag, brought to my attention by Amanda Marcotte at Slate, and holy shit, it is a doozy. And when I say “doozy,” I mean: I am becoming stupider by reading this.

Expect a longer reaction tonight, if I don’t drink myself into a coma first.

Asking writers what they want.

Specifically, I’m asking my fellow writers what they want in notebooks.

If you use physical notebooks for writing and/or planning your novels—or for doing anything else, for that matter—what features do you want to see in those notebooks? Size and page count? Divisions and sections? Cover designs? Headers and footers? Witty quotes used periodically throughout page block?

Tell me what you like to see. If someone designed a notebook just for you, what would it look like?