Tuesday, December 02, 2003
Urk. It's one of those days when my head's too full of things I want to mention in the journal. And it's also the sort of day when I really don't have time for a long entry.
One year ago today we moved from Birmingham to Atlanta. That it could have been an entire year is more than hard to believe - it's positively nauseating. I wish time would flow like it did when I was a kid, so deliciously slow that the six-week period between report cards seemed an eternity. A year, and I still haven't hung all the pictures! But, I have been free of Birmingham for a year now.
After the hectic, nerve-frelling weekend swallowed by the mad dash to meet my deadline on Murder of Angels, I decided late yesterday morning that Spooky and I deserved a "day off." I had to talk to John Morgan at Penguin, to be sure he'd received the ms. in one piece. He had, and informed me that the release date of Murder of Angels has been moved up to September 2004. After that, we spent the day exploring Virginia Highlands. We found a wonderful used bookstore, and I picked out a big stack of non-fiction volumes on paleontology, oceanography, and paleoanthropology, and a volume of sci-fi, and then exercised supreme self-control by buying not a single one of them. Just being in the bookstore was a fine sort of therapy for my rattled nerves. Oh, and there was a first -printing copy of Threshold. That was cool. As a child, I fantasized about seeing my books in used bookstores. We had coffee at Aurora and walked in the cold air. We finished up the day with dinner at The Vortex in L5P. Back home, I spent a little time on Nebari.Net, and then we played Primal until 1:30 a.m.
And now, today, I absolutely have to get back to work on the "Untitled Novella."
Also, yesterday, someone had abandoned a huge box of books beside the dumpster. We dragged it in and sorted through the lot, to see if there was anything we wanted. The rest will go to Goodwill, as the dumpster is not an appropriate place for perfectly good books. The oddest of the lot were a child's handmade, hardwritten book, Girls Rule, Boys Drool (which I kept), and a 1968 yearbook from Randolph-Macon Women's College in Lynchburg, Virginia (which I didn't keep, but spent some time examining). Also involving the dumpster, yesterday I got rid of my office chair of six years. From that chair I wrote Threshold, the bulk of The Dreaming, about a zillion short stories, Low Red Moon, and Murder of Angels, before it gave up the ghost last month. I bought it just after I moved from Athens back to Birmingham. Before hauling it out to the trash, I cut a small swatch from it as a keepsake. Yes, I am sentimental.
Generally, I have little interest in local politics, but there were a couple of important items on the agenda of the Atlanta City Council last night. This morning, we all awoke to discover that, over the next several years, water and sewer rates will increase substantially, and bars now have to have last call at 2:30 and close by 3 a.m., shaving sixty minutes off bar hours. Neither of these decisions makes Atlanta a more attractive place to live. The ancient, failing sewers are in desperate need of repair, following the city's explosive, Ymir-like growth in the '90s, but surely the ACC could have found a means of raising funds for the overhaul without hitting the pocketbooks of a lot of people who simply can't afford the hike. As for the bars, the whole city is suffering because of the frat-boy, hip-hop party zone in Buckhead, which has been the scene of several violent episodes. Somehow, the ACC thinks that shortening hours, costing local bar owners millions in annual revenue and a lot of people their jobs, punishing all bars within the city limits, will solve the problem. It won't, of course. The violence in Buckhead will continue.
How long has it been since I've talked poltics here?
Enough for today. Time to write.