It’s finally final: I am a writer guest at Houston’s ComicPalooza over Memorial Day weekend. This will launch the rest of 2023: ConQuesT, my workshops, appearances at Kansas State University (who are offering me more for a one-day visit than the raise offered me as a Congers-Gabel Teaching Professor, which the department split three ways), more workshops, book launch, World Fantasy, and two residencies.
I was wrung out all spring: covid; a friend being trolled; misery to do with KU and the department and the awkward transition to phased retirement. That fatigue seems to have eased, perhaps? I may be tired or forget things, but hey, who doesn’t? I no longer feel stomped on the way I did with long covid. And Chris told me that as soon as I get clear of the department I’ll feel much better (he did, anyway), and perhaps that’s part of it, too. It’s nice to be see all the to-dos dissolving like ice in hot water.
Lots of exhilarating socializing: I met Damien Pollard last week when he was here on a visit to talk about Italian cinema, among other things, and he was great company. This week, I have a house guest, Christina (who is amazing!), and I’ll be seeing a lot of the French SF scholar, Simon Bréan, here to give a talk or two and to do some research. This is a lot of dinners out and daytrips, and all in the last couple of weeks of semester, when I am reading a lot of stories for workshop and finishing up things.
Very much looking forward to summer workshops! We have some great applicants, and the best part of it is that Barbara and I will be face to face with people again.
How am I wasting time? (Because it’s perfectly fair to waste some time!) Bingeing Dr. Who. I love my friends so I never told them that I shrugged inwardly when they enthused over this great script or that great portrayal. I figured this was going to be like Buffy or Terry Pratchett: just…not for me. But I borrowed a slew of DVDs starting with the ninth Doctor from Chris and Lauren and it’s been a delight. Who knew? Everyone but me, it turns out. (And there are so many of them!)
I’ve also been reading a pile of classical and medieval Japanese poetry and nikki. I’m not going to write another Japan book, but the whole reason I wrote any Japan books was that I loved Heian and Kamakura Japan. Research and translations have marched forward while I was off doing other things, so in some ways this is like finding it for the first time all over again.
More next week!