A little late updating this month because there has been a lot.
First up, next Tor column is up! It deals with the discovery of the structure of DNA by Watson and Crick, and the rise and fall of John W. Campbell. This one I had the distinct pleasure of having to write TWICE, thanks to my overzealous cleaning of my desktop mixing with a moment of I-should-have-known-better. It’s a strange experience having to rewrite an entire draft from memory. Never before had I been so sure that a first draft was flawless than in that second full draft (while knowing full well that first drafting was no better than the second). But in the end it wound up hitting all the notes I had wanted it to and it was no worse for the delay.
Thankfully, this installment marks my departure from the pulpy roots of SF and has launched me up into SF’s woody stems. As such I have been reading a lot of Heinlein and Asimov. Asimov has proven to be a good chaser for all the Heinlein, but I know totally understand why folks were always saying, “Stick to his juvenilia.” Starman Jones and Have Spacesuit Will Travel did both turn out to be the least (literally) offensive things I’ve read by him, whereas every single other book made me want to throw my Kindle across the room. Repeatedly. The objectifying feminism, bad faith arguments, the black and white thinking, the logical contortions in the midst of strawman arguments… They’re exhausting. I’ll be happy to be done with the Heinlein article (and him) and onto the Asimov one where at least there aren’t as many women on the page for him to be misogynist about and I can just loose myself in cold waves of beautiful logic.
The last month (and a half) has been eventful. I finally got to realize the childhood dream I never thought I had and go to scenic Sheboygan, Wisconsin for a dear friend from grad school’s bachelorette party. There was much drinking while floating in a lake beside a ridiculous house with a bunch of hilarious women. This was immediately followed up with a retreat with my writers group. Never have so many of us been in one place (we missed you, Sandra!) in meatspace at the same time. There was no cell reception (and limping WiFi), much giggling, alcohol and delicious food, and I managed to get the column draft done before discovering I had deleted it once I deposited myself at the WorldCon hotel. A number of drinks later and I was able to just relax and enjoy the con for the rest of the weekend. There was again, much giggling, drinking, good food, and good friends, and I got back feeling primed and ready to… rewrite that column.
I also got a new tattoo – this one representing my deep and abiding love of Twin Peaks and a promise to future Kelly that we’ll make it up to the Pacific Northwest someday. Until then, I’ll have a little bit of it with me always.
My band also played another show. There was surprisingly good turnout, we played some new songs and some old, retooled songs. It was our sixth show this year, and along with the new EP we recorded, I really feel like we’re hitting our stride and that’s a deeply satisfying feeling.
Finally, I’ve updated my monthly Spotify playlist with all the things I’ve been enjoying this past month (and a half). Find it below, and feel free to subscribe to it if you dig it. I’ll be posting updates to it regularly since I know there’s an overwhelming amount of great music coming out all the time and finding new stuff (especially as you get older) gets to be more and more work, so you can benefit from the legwork I’ve been doing (and maybe throw some cash at some good bands when they come through your town).