Many things going on! But a few loom larger than others:
Handed in a draft of the short story collection to my publisher, Small Beer Press. I didn’t include any of my non-SF/F real-life stuff, so there’s no “Attempt at Exhausting my Deck” and no “Attempt at Exhausting An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Paris by Georges Perec,” and almost all the flash fiction is not included. I’m a little sad, but I just had too many different things going on: lengths between 17 and 36,000 words; topics ranging from realist relationship stuff to myth; everything from lists of lists to classic naturalism (or as close to naturalism as I get). I left out about 20k of published experimental real-life stuff…and learned that working in multiple modes really slows down the accumulation of words toward a collection.
School started last week. I love the graduate workshop I’m leading, as always. It’s four new people and two I have worked with before. This also means regular meetings with a lot of other students: people finishing their dissertations and theses, first-year grad students; the three undergrads I said I would help with their honors theses. And I am on a search committee. And I am learning about grant-writing for the Ad Astra Center for Science Fiction and the Speculative Imagination. And I am on 50% leave this semester, to be more helpful for my mom.
Next week, I am doing something I have not done in a lot of years: a family vacation. My brother and his family have invited me to hang out at a cabin in the Wisconsin Dells for a few days — lots of food and lolling about, which seems ideal. Since I am writing the talk(s) for West Virginia, I appreciate the down time.
And my University of West Virginia visit 9/12-16 just gets more interesting and exciting! I am there for a full week: I’ll be giving a talk (or maybe a talk and a reading? unclear) and meeting with lots and lots of interesting people, everyone from a PhD candidate working on SF to the president and provost.
The image for this week’s blog post is mine! A few weeks back, I got a tablet and for the last couple of weeks I have been drawing a cartoon a day, inspired by Jennifer Omand’s moribund but charming Squarecat Comics journal from some years ago. This is the most fun I have had in ages! I may make them a tier over on my Patreon.