Titles by Kij Johnson are available for purchase online

The freelance project is coming into the final turn, and I am in that weird zone when I am completely useless for anything else. The wordcount was raised to 53K (which I am stretching to 55K), and I am currently at 50K. Two days more? Three? And then the fixing and rewriting has to happen. I am aiming to hand it off on my birthday, Inauguration Day, 1/20. Then I will have three things to celebrate. There are a lot of other things that need to happen, but I can’t even focus on them long enough to write a list or plan a schedule. This is always the way the end of a project looks; I’m used to it, but I don’t especially enjoy the feeling, like being at the bottom of sledding run, when things are going a little too fast to control, and the barbed wire fence and creek at the bottom of the hill is looming. But..so close!

Yeah, all these other tasks. I can’t even remember what they are. I have been writing them all in my planner, but I keep forgetting to look in there. Now, NOW I’ll go do it. Hmm, lots of emails that need replies to them. Maybe after a nap?

…and that’s how it goes.

I was complaining to my mom about how I was running out of books and since then, every time she has to go to the post office to send something off for the bookshop she owns, she also drops me a small box. This was made for some weirdly fun batches. Last week’s included a 19th-century nature writer, a pile from the children’s author E Nesbit, and a Folio Society compendium about spy stories. It’s hard to believe I never read E Nesbit as a child, but it does mean I have all the pleasure of reading her books for the first time, now, as an adult. She is a very sly stylist.

I was so deep into the writing that, while I knew about the Georgia election and the insurrection, it was only in the background until Thursday, when I finally came up and started reading. This time last week, I remember saying we would start 2021 with an armed insurrection, and I was right. It’s not over yet, though. I have theories about what will happen next; mostly they’re not good though they are better than they could have been! I suspect all SF writers run scenarios in their heads in the same way bookies probably run mental book on lots of things. What next? What else? What might change things?

This is pretty inconsequential. That is also what the end of a project looks like for me. I’ll go back to having thoughts and feelings once I type THE END. And then back to American Tour!

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