Shaken and Stirred
bond, gwenda bond

white, slush and other diversions
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(First, if I owe you an email, and oh, I'm pretty sure I do, soon, okay?)

It's bedtime, so this will be abbreviated, which you will come to see in a minute means you should sink to your knees and thank your god or someone else's.

I went through all the "Say...why aren't we crying?" slush tonight, aided by wine. The quality of our slush this time is the best we've had so far, and the quality of the consider pile very high indeed. If you have a story with us, expect to hear back within the next week or so. We still need more material, of course, so get thinking and writing and sending.

Little things...

Mary Roach reviewed a new book about the body farm in Tennessee for WP Book World over the weekend. I enjoyed Roach's own book about cadavers (STIFF) last year, and likewise this review:

Bass was inspired to found his decomp facility following a stunningly egregious error of his own. He estimated that a body found lying atop a coffin in a mysteriously exhumed Civil War grave had been dead one to two years. Only after the investigator assigned to examine the clothing called to say that the stores on the labels hadn't existed for over 100 years and the trousers laced up the side, did Bass realize the body was that of Col. William Shy. (Shy had been embalmed -- a rarity at that time -- and buried in an airtight iron casket.) Before the Body Farm took up the job, the last systematic analysis of human decay was Sun Tzu's enigmatically titled The Washing Away of Wrongs, published in 1247. Clearly there was a need for the Body Farm, and Bass was brave and ambitious to meet it. There wasn't a similarly pressing need for him to write this book, but I'm glad he did. There's probably something wrong with me, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I'll refrain from the obvious comment about what's wrong with me-self.

Also, via Terry T. and Maud N. a couple of links about the brutal world of publishing (Dan Murrell in Publisher's Weekly) and the possibility of self-publishing to success (Andy Kessler in the Wall Street Journal). Worth reading.

And Sarah Weinman offers some interesting commentary, which I couldn't agree with more, on the piece about expectations from PW:

So back to the overall point, which is this: if you find the right people, and have an idea of realistic--not necessarily lowered, but practical--expectations, then your writing career will be successful and fruitful. Sure, horrible luck can happen, and often does, but those "overnight successes" are hardly ever that. There's a lot going on behind the scenes that average readers are never privy to. Find out what they are. Work. Start with the manuscript, and then do what else is necessary. The days of sending your work out and hoping it will speak for itself is long gone and it's doubtful it will come back. Be proactive, and expect it of those working for you and who you work for.

And people are going to poke around in an Alaskan ghost town.


earworm: "Wires and Waves," Rilo Kiley

rec: the folklore of Zora Neale Hurston (this rec will seem very timely when Andy Duncan's new story goes up on SciFiction in month or so, so do yourselves a favor and brush up, particularly on TELL MY HORSE)

namecheck: Andy "Tell His Horse" Duncan

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