Not a Blog

A Farewell to Phyl

January 18, 2021 at 5:04 pm
Profile Pic

My old friend Phyllis Eisenstein died on December 7, in Chicago.   The cause of death, I am told, was Covid-19, but Phyllis had been hospitalized for most of the year, following a cerebral hemorrhage last January.

I have been trying to write a memorial to her since her passing… trying, and struggling with it.   The holidays interfered, as they will, and of course I have so much on my plate… but mainly it was just hard.    There was so much to say, and it seemed that only days had passed since I wrote about the deaths of Kay McCauley and then Ben Bova.   Each one of those was a blow, and coming so soon one after the other… I confess, it left me in a dark place.   The closer you are to someone, the harder it is to do justice to their memory.  And Phyllis and I were close.

My old friend, I said… and damn, but that is true.   I had known Phyl for  half a century, I’ve realized, looking back.   We first met in Boston in 1971, at Noreascon I, the first worldcon I ever attended.   She was working the SFWA table at the con, greeting members and telling them about SFWA… a volunteer, giving of her time and effort to help out.   Phyllis did a lot of that; she had a generous soul.   I had only sold two stories when I turned up at Noreason and I was not yet qualified to join SFWA.  I had only attended one previous sf con, so I knew almost no one at worldcon… but Phyllis was warm and friendly, and I spent a lot of the con hanging around her at the table, and she introduced me to other writers, editors, artists, all sorts of people.   Phyllis, and her husband Alex, had been a part of fandom for a long time, and she seemed to know everyone.

I mean to write about all that, and more, but I also wanted to say something about her work, for Phyllis Eisenstein was a gifted and accomplished writer, one who never got the attention that I think that she deserved.    There’s a lot to say about that as well.   And I will.

The days have been flying by, though, and the demands on me have been building, and finally I concluded it was better to post this short notice than say nothing at all.   I will return to Phyllis and write her a much longer memorial, I promise… when I can.   Soon, I hope.

There has been too much death.   Phyl is the third friend I lost in the last two months of 2020, that most dismal of years.   And three other friends, people very near and dear to me, are struggling with very grave health issues even now.  It seems there is darkness everywhere.  The COVID death count keeps rising, there are fascists in the streets; the best lack all conviction, the worst are full of passionate intensity, and Kay and Ben and Phyl are all gone.

Be well, my friends.

 

Current Mood: sad sad

Moveable Feasts

January 11, 2021 at 8:15 am
Profile Pic

A few weeks ago, while up in my mountain fastness, I rewatched MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, the Woody Allen film about a struggling writer visiting modern Paris (played by Owen Wilson) who finds himself travelling back in time to Paris of the 20s, where he finds himself bumping into Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, Dali, Picasso, and the other artists and writers who made that such a special time.   It’s a lovely, entertaining movie about nostalgia.  I have enjoyed it before and I expect I will enjoy it again.

Watching it, however, made me realize that I had never read Hemingway’s A MOVEABLE FEAST, his memoir about his days in Paris as a hungry young writer in the 20s.   That book, and the times it chronicles, were obviously what inspired Allen to do MIDNIGHT IN PARIS.   I have never been a huge Hemingway fan, as it happens — I have read several of his novels, of course, though by no means all, and when I look back on the writers of that era, I find I much prefer F. Scott Fitzgerald — but I was curious, so I went and ordered the book and devoured it as soon as it arrived.

A few random thoughts–
— Woody Allen really nails Hemingway in MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, hoo boy,
— I liked A MOVEABLE FEAST more than I have any of Hemingway’s novels, truth be told.   It was a vivid glimpse back into a vanished time and place, and into the author himself as a young man.   The book was not entirely what I expected.   Parts of it were moving and nostalgic, but other parts were surprisingly funny, like Hemingway’s efforts to assure Fitzgerald that his dick was not too small by showing him statues in the Louvre.   Other parts were sad, like the account of his estrangement from Gertrude Stein.   And his thoughts on life, love, and writing are always fascinating,
— Hemingway could not have been an easy friend; his judgements of others could be scathing and acidic.   Alice Roosevelt Longworth would have wanted him sitting near her, for certain,
— whatever golden glow might light the moveable feast of Paris in the 20s, I can never escape the knowledge that after the 20s came the 30s, when the lights went out all over Europe.   You know.  Nazis.   And that makes me think of the world today, and shiver.

Thing is, while A MOVEABLE FEAST is about Paris in the 20s, it was not written until decades later.   It was, in fact, published posthumously, after Hemingway took his own life.   He was writing and editing it during the last years of his life… an old man, rich and famous and sad, looking back on his youth when he was poor and struggling and unknown, but alive and vital, in love with his first wife and with Paris, drunk on dreams of what the future might hold, of all the possibilities that lay before him.   The whole book very much exemplifies what Woody Allen was talking about in MIDNIGHT IN PARIS.   Papa, in those final years, is writing of the time and place when he was happiest… or at least the time and place he remembers being happiest…  but I do wonder whether or not he is only remembering the good stuff.

Reading it, I could not help but reflect on my own life.   We all have our own moveable feasts.   For me, I think, it was science fiction fandom in the 70s.   I was a struggling writer then, just as Hemingway was in the 20s; writing, writing, going to workshops, collecting rejections, trying to get better, never knowing when the next sale might come.   No, I did not get to hang with Scott and Zelda, or Hemingway, or Gertrude Stein, or Dali… but I had Howard Waldrop and Jack Dann and Lisa Tuttle, I drank with the Haldemans, I hunted the hallways of worldcon with Gardner Dozois looking for the Secret Pro Party, went skinny-dipping in hotel pools and met Parris in a sauna.   When I got hungry I went looking for an editor with an expense account who might buy me a meal (elsewise I was scrounging in the con suite).   Giants walked the halls in those days, and I had the good fortune to meet a few of them, if only to tell them what their work had meant to me.  I shook the hands of C.L. Moore and Edmond Hamilton and Murray Leinster, I had actual conversations with Isaac Asimov and Robert A. Heinlein and Ray Bradbury and Ted Sturgeon, I got to share meals with Julie Schwartz and Wilson Tucker, with Harlan Ellison and Robert Silverberg.

Like Hemingway in Paris, I never had much money.   I shared rooms at cons, slept on floors or in a bathtub, got to the cons on a bus or in the back seat of a friend’s car… walked to the hotels from the bus station, lugging my suitcase in my hand (no wheels on luggage in those days) since I did not have the money for a cab.   Were those the bad parts?  Or the good parts?  From 2020, it is not easy to say.   They make me smile now, as I look back.   But if I try, I know that there were really bad parts too.   Like Hemingway, though, I choose not to dwell on them.  The world was a fucked-up place, then as now, but fandom was a refuge; warm, welcoming, strange (but in a good way), a community unlike any I had ever known, united by a shared love of our peculiar little branch of literature and the people who wrote it.

To quote one of Hemingway’s contemporaries, however, you can’t go home again.  By the time Hemingway sat down to write A MOVEABLE FEAST in those last years of his life, he surely knew that the Paris he had known and loved in the 20s was gone forever… and the fandom that I knew and loved in the 70s is gone as well.   This year the worldcon is in Washinton DC, in the very same hotel where the 1974 worldcon was held… the worldcon where I lost my first Hugo, accepted Lisa Tuttle’s Campbell Award, and prowled the halls till dawn with Gargy, looking for parties we never found.   There is a part of me that somehow hopes that going back to the same hotel in the same city, I might somehow recapture something of those nights.   But my head knows better.   My head knows those days are gone forever, along with so many of the people that I shared them with.    I wonder how often Papa Hemingway returned to Paris in the 40s and 50s, and what he thought of the place when he did.

Anyway… I quite like MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, and I loved A MOVEABLE FEAST.   Maybe you will too.

 

 

 

Current Mood: melancholy melancholy

So True

December 21, 2020 at 9:14 am
Profile Pic

Current Mood: stressed stressed

Tags:

I’ve Been Parodied

December 10, 2020 at 8:22 am
Profile Pic

Way way back in 1969, when the world and I were young, the Harvard Lampoon did a hilarious send-up of Tolkien and LORD OF THE RINGS, called BORED OF THE RINGS.   It is still in print all these years later.   Spam and Dildo, Arrowroot son of Arrowshirt, Pepsi and Moxie… a hoot.

And now, I guess, it is my turn.

The Harvard Lampoon has turned its sights on A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE and come up with LAME OF THRONES.

Yes, they sent me a copy.

No, I have not looked at it yet.   I am working up the courage.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, they say… but parody is right up there, so…

Thanks.   I guess.

Current Mood: amused amused

More Sadness

December 7, 2020 at 8:49 am
Profile Pic

The deaths just keep on coming in this worst of all possible years.

I was very saddened to read of the death of Ben Bova, another victim of Covid-19 (and Donald J. Trump).

Bova was a major science fiction writer, a hard science guy, talented and prolific.   I could not begin to name all his novels; the list is longer than my arm.   He wrote some good short fiction as well, including his collaboration with Harlan Ellison, “Brillo,” which became the basis (uncredited) of a short-lived TV series and one of Harlan’s famous lawsuits.

For all his accomplishments as an author, however, it was as an editor that Ben Bova had the most profound impact on the field… and on my own life and career.   When the legendary John W. Campbell Junior died in 1971, the Conde Nast Publications, publishers of ANALOG, chose Bova to succeed him.  For all his accomplishments, JWC had become increasingly idiosyncratic in his last couple of decades, and ANALOG had become moribund and out of touch.   Ben Bova came in and revitalized the magazine, welcoming a whole new generation of writers who Campbell most likely would never have touched (myself among them).   The changes were not without controversy.   During the first couple of years of his editorship, ANALOG’s lettercol was full of angry “cancel my subscription” letters from readers who insisted that JWC would never have published this or that story.   My own stories were the subjects of some of those complaints, along with work by Joe Haldeman and many others.   The complainers were not wrong; odds were, Campbell would never have bought the stories Bova did.

Back in the 70s, I was selling to all the magazines and most of the original anthologies, but ANALOG became my major market, and Ben Bova was the editor who had the biggest influence on my work.   Previous generations of SF writers were writing for JWC or H.L Gold or Boucher & McComas.   If I was writing for anyone, I was writing for Ben… at least some of the time.

My first sale to ANALOG was actually a piece I did for a journalism class at Northwestern, about computer chess: “The Computer Was A Fish.”   But fiction soon followed, lots of fiction… thanks in large part to Ben Bova.

I got my first cover on ANALOG with “The Second Kind of Loneliness.”   Ben bought that.   The cover was by Frank Kelly Freas.

My first Hugo- and -Nebula nominee (lost both) was “With Morning Comes Mistfall.”   Also published in ANALOG, by Ben.

The second Nebula loser, and first Hugo WINNER, was “A Song for Lya,” a novella from ANALOG.   Bought and published by Ben.   That year, worldcon went to Australia for the first time.   I was still directing chess tournaments to supplement my meagre (growing, but meagre) income from writing, and there was no way I could afford a trip down under, so I asked Ben Bova to accept for me if I won.   I did!  And he did!

Ben also bought “The Storms of Windhaven,” the first my Windhaven collaborations with Lisa Tuttle.   Got a cover for that too.

Oh, and “Seven Times Never Kill Man.”   That one got a Schoenherr cover (one that alledgedly inspired George Lucas to create the Wookiees).  And lost a Hugo, the same year as “Storms.”

Ben serialized my first novel, DYING OF THE LIGHT, in an abridged version called “Mockman.”   With a cover by Vincent di Fate.

And along about 1978, when Ben left ANALOG to take on the editorship of a new slick science fiction/ fact magazine called OMNI, he took me with him.  I published several stories there as well, most notably a novelette called “Sandkings” that some of you may recall.   It won the Hugo and Nebula both, and was the most successful thing I ever wrote until I began A GAME OF THRONES.

Looking back, it is amazing to realize how many of the stories that made my name were edited and published by Ben Bova.   Without him, I cannot say for certain that I would have had a career at all    He won four Hugo awards in a row as Best Editor, as I recall, and deserved every one.   If he had continued to edit, I have no doubt he would have won more… but writing was his first love, and in the 80s he returned to his own work.

His family and friends have my condolences.   I know he will be missed.

These are dark times… for science fiction, as well as the world at large.    I am still reeling from Kay McCauley’s death last month… from Gardner Dozois’s death in 2018… and now this.   The lights are going out.   Giants are passing.   We shall not see their like again.

 

 

Current Mood: sad sad

The Queen of Agents

November 11, 2020 at 4:37 pm
Profile Pic

A very dark year got even darker a few days ago, when I learned of the death of Kay McCauley in New York City.

Kay had been my literary agent for many many years, and a big part of my life for even longer.   I have been trying to recall the first time I met her, but the memories are blurry.   I suspect the first time we spoke was by phone.   I had signed on with Kay’s brother, Kirby McCauley, along about the mid 70s, when I was a struggling young writer and he was a struggling young agent.   Kirby had come out of Minnesota to set up shop in the Big Apple, and in the early days he flew solo, working out of his apartment, representing the estates of a few giants and a lot of upstarts and neopros like me.   But he climbed, he climbed.  His client list grew, and some of his clients became stars… in no small part due to Kirby.   To the best of my recollection, Kay came out from Minnesota to join him in the early/ mid 80s, to help him manage a business that had become ever larger and more chaotic.   She soon became an indispensable part of the agency that was variously known as Kirby McCauley Ltd, then the Pimlico Agency, then Aurous.

Kirby died in September 0f 2014.   Hard to believe that it has been six years.  The years go by so very swiftly now.   I made a long post about Kirby and all he did for me shortly after his death on my old LiveJournal version of Not A Blog.  It is still up, so I won’t repeat myself here, beyond posting a link to:
https://grrm.livejournal.com/382006.html 

The agency carried on after Kirby’s death, and so did Kay.   She had been pretty much running things for a decade or more in any case, with Kirby advising from the sidelines, semi-retired.   And if Kirby had been the King of Agents at his height, his sister was indisputably the queen.

I have been trying to write this tribute to Kay for two days now, but the words come hard.   She was such a big part of my life… and the life of all her clients, I think.   Hers was an old fashioned sort of literary agency.   She did not have a long list of clients, and… indeed… was not eager to take on anyone new, though from time to time she made exceptions.   She took on Gardner Dozois when he finally left the agency he had been with for decades, and did great things for him.   (Gardner, love him, was such an Eeyore that he tried to argue when Kay got him MUCH bigger advances than he had been getting previously, protesting “No, that’s too much,” but Kay was having none of that).   She took on Vic Milan when so one else would touch him and made him the biggest and best sale he had ever gotten.   She did amazing stuff for many of her other clients too… but I will let them tell you about that.   And of course she and Kirby did great things for me.

Being one of Kay’s clients was not an ordinary writer/agent relationship.   To Kay, we were all family.   She loved her clients, and her clients loved her back.    There is no one like her.

(Mind you, Kay could be fierce as well.   She did not forget, and she did not easily forgive anyone who she felt had screwed her, her brother, or any of her clients.   You messed with Kay McCauley at your own peril).

The news of Kay’s death came as a total shock to me, and… I suspect… to most of her clients.   Kay was older than Kirby, and a decade or so older than me, but you would never have known it.   Her energy was prodigious.   She seemed like a force of nature, indestructible, tireless; I figured she would go on for decades.   I think all of us did.   She was working hard for her clients right up until the end.   In fact, she had just closed a deal for three more Wild Cards anthologies for us.   The contract is sitting on my desk as I type, awaiting my review and signature.  Kay would probably have phoned or texted in another day or two to scold me for not dealing with it more quickly.

She always loved Wild Cards; the books, yes, the characters… and all the writers as well.   For a number of years, she would fly out to Santa Fe on or about September 15 (Wild Cards Day) and throw a big party for all the Wild Carders.   We had one at my theatre, and several of them at Meow Wolf.  None this year, alas, thanks to Covid… but I know Kay would have made up for that next year.   Though she did not often come to worldcon, she was planning to attend CoNZealand and throw a party there.  Covid put an end to that as well, sad to say.  (FWIW, I do not believe she died from Covid).

Of course, dinner with Kay was always on the schedule whenever I visited New York.   The last one — the last time I saw her — was a year ago in October, when Kay and me and Tom Doherty and Diana Pho and my assistant Sid had a marvelous steak feast at Keen’s Steakhouse in NYC.   Tom and Kay had secretly arranged for the restaurant to present to present me with one of the clay pipes that have decorated the walls and ceiling of Keen’s since colonial days.  A rare honor.   I have never smoked,  but I was thrilled all the same.


SID & KAY at KEEN’s, October 2019

I have so many other memories of Kay… she has been a huge part of my life and career for so many years.   I remember when she went to Ashford Castle in Ireland with me and Parris, the meals we shared together, the day the three of us went hawking.   I wish I had a photograph of Kay with her hawk.   We had such a great time there, we often talked of going back.   Being Irish, Kay often talked of wanting to retire and move to a cottage in Ireland… a fond dream, but I knew she would never do it.  She might have started as a Minnesota gal, but Manhattan was in her blood.   I remember the times we visited City Island with Kirby, to feast on seafood at one of the waterside restaurants there.   So many toasts… great bottles of wine, champagne, and of course prosecco.  And great meals.   Which she always insisted on buying…  unless there was an editor along she could give the check to.   I think I only managed to pay for her dinner once, during a visit to Santa Fe, and to do that I had to get to the restaurant twenty minutes ahead of her and speak to our waiter, make special arrangements so the check next came to the table… elsewise she would have ripped it from my hands.

I remember how we wept together, on the phone, when Roger Zelazny died.

And again, decades later, for Gardner.

She was a great agent too.   And unlike many literary agents of her generation, she was not afraid of new media.   Kay never played a role-playing game in her life, but the first time I was offered an RPG deal, she learned all she could about gaming, plunged in, and got me a terrific contract.

Ah… I hardly knew how to start this, and now I do not know how to stop…

It is going to take me a long long time to get over her passing.   Years from now, I suspect, part of me will still find myself wanting to text her, or pick up the phone and call her.   She was always just a phone call away.

And I damn well better get that Wild Cards contract signed soon, or I know that Kay will haunt me.

If there is an afterlife, Kay McCauley is with her brother Kirby right now, and the two of them are negotiating better places in heaven for their clients.

((I will leave comments open on this one, but ONLY for comments about Kay.   Those of you who knew her, and have memories and tributes to share, please do.   I would like to read them)).

 

 

Current Mood: sad sad

Back to Westeros

November 8, 2020 at 9:18 am
Profile Pic

Sometimes I do get the feeling that most of you reading my posts here care more about what is happening in Westeros than what is happening in the United States.

So let me assure you that, when not sweating out election returns or brooding over other real world problems, I have continued to work on THE WINDS OF WINTER.

No, sorry, still not done, but I do inch closer.   It is a big big book.   I try not to dwell on that too much.    I write a chapter at a time, a page at a time, a sentence at a time, a word at a time.   It is the only way.   And sometimes I rewrite.

Of late I have been spending a lot of time with the Lannisters.  Cersei and Tyrion in particular.   I’ve also paid a visit to Dorne, and dropped in to Oldtown a time or three.   In addition to turning out new chapters, I’ve been revising some old ones (some very old)… including, yes, some stuff I read at cons ages ago, or even posted online as samples.   I tweak stuff constantly, and sometimes go beyond tweaking, moving things around, combining chapters, breaking chapters in two, reordering stuff.

None of this is even remotely new.   It is how the first five books were written.

I was really on a roll back in June and July.   Progress has continued since then, but more slowly… I suffered a gut punch in early August that really had me down for a time, and another, for different reasons, in early September.   But I slogged on, and of late I am picking up steam again.

On other fronts… well, aside from Covd-19 slowing everything down, we are making great progress on the HBO prequel HOUSE OF THE DRAGON.  Ryan and Miguel are in London, casting has begun, it is all looking very exciting.

I wish I could say that things are also going great on all the other television and film projects I am involved with, either as a producer or as the author of the original source material (i.e. novels and short stories).   I can’t.    Very little shooting is taking place, and almost nothing is being greenlit.  Of course, development continues… but there’s a reason they call it “development hell.”   Sigh.

So that’s where all that stands.   Or at least, that’s as much as I am allowed to tell you right now.

Hang in there, friends.

Current Mood: busy busy

Writing in a Shared World

October 24, 2020 at 11:25 am
Profile Pic

What’s it like to write in a shared world, like the Wild Cards universe?

Wild Carders Melinda M. Snodgrass, David D. Levine, Kevin Andrew Murphy, Paul Cornell, and Mary Anne Mohanraj will tell us, in a new (virtual) panel discussion sponsored by the Jean Cocteau Cinema.

Check it out at:

Wild Cards Series Presents: Writing In A Consortium

Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful

IAIA Scholarships

August 19, 2020 at 10:33 am
Profile Pic

IAIA — the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe — recently had its annual fundraising event.

Virtually, of course.

It seemed to be a great success.

There’s a video of the event.   You can even catch a glimpse of yours truly at 1:58 minute mark, talking about the annual scholarships I sponsor there, through my foundation.   There are brief statements from this year’s scholarship winners as well.

 

2020 IAIA Virtual Scholarship Event—Scholarships Shape Futures

Though the annual fund-raising event is over, the need for funds is not.   IAIA does great work, so if any of you reading it have a few extra dollars, please do send them their way.   It would be much appreciated.

 

Current Mood: pleased pleased

Back in Westeros

August 15, 2020 at 9:10 am
Profile Pic

I am back in my fortress of solitude again, my isolated mountain cabin.   I’d returned to Santa Fe for a short visit, to spend some time with Parris, deal with some local business that had piled up during my months away, and of course fulfill my duties to CoNZealand, the virtual worldcon.   But all that is behind me now, and I am back on the mountain again… which means I am back in Westeros again, once more moving ahead with WINDS OF WINTER.

It is curious how my life has evolved.  I mean, once upon a time, I actually wrote my books and stories in the house where I lived, in a home office.   But some decades ago, wanting more solitude, I bought the house across the street and made THAT my writer’s retreat.   No longer would I write all day in my red flannel bathrobe; now I would have to dress and put on shoes and walk all the way across the street to write.  But that worked for a while.

Things started getting busier, though.   So busy that I needed a full-time assistant.   Then the office house had someone else in it, not just me and my characters.   And then I hired a second assistant, and a third, and… there was more mail, more email, more phone calls (we put in a new phone system), more people coming by.   By now I am up to five assistants… and somewhere in there I also acquired a movie theatre, a bookstore, a charitable foundation, investments, a business manager… and…

Despite all the help, I was drowning till I found the mountain cabin.

My life up here is very boring, it must be said.  Truth be told, I hardly can be said to have a life.   I have one assistant with me at all times (minions, I call them).  The assistants do two-week shifts, and have to stay in quarantine at home before starting a shift.   Everyone morning I wake up and go straight to the computer, where my minion brings me coffee (I am utterly useless and incoherent without my morning coffee) and juice, and sometimes a light breakfast.  Then I start to write.   Sometimes I stay at it until dark.   Other days I break off in late afternoon to answer emails or return urgent phone calls.   My assistant brings me food and drink from time to time.   When I finally break off for the day, usually around sunset, there’s dinner.   Then we watch television or screen a movie.  The wi-fi sucks up on the mountain, though, so the choices are limited.   Some nights I read instead.   I always read a bit before going to sleep; when a book really grabs hold of me, I may read half the night, but that’s rare.

I sleep.  The next day, I wake up, and do the same.  The next day, the next day, the next day.   Before Covid, I would usually get out once a week or so to eat at a restaurant or go to the movies.   That all ended in March.   Since then, weeks and months go by when I never leave the cabin, or see another human being except whoever is on duty that week.  I lose track of what day it is, what week it is, what month it is.   The time seems to by very fast.   It is now August, and I don’t know what happened to July.

But it is good for the writing.

And you know, now that I reflect on it, I am coming to realize that has always been my pattern.   I moved to Santa Fe at the end of 1979, from Dubuque, Iowa.   My first marriage broke up just before that move, so I arrived in my new house alone, in a town where I knew almost no one.   Roger Zelazny was here, and he became a great friend and mentor, but Roger was married with small kids, so I really did not see him often.   There was no fandom in Santa Fe; that was all down in Albuquerque, an hour away.  I went to the club meetings every month, but that was only one night a month, and required two hours on the road.   And I had no job to meet new people.   My job was in the back room at the house on Declovina Street, so that was where I spent my days.  At night, I watched television.   Alone.   Sometimes I went to the movies.   Alone.

That was my life from December 1979 through September 1981, when Parris finally moved to Santa Fe, following Denvention.   (Not quite so bleak, maybe, I did make some local friends by late 1980 and early 1981, but it was a slow process).   When I think back on my life in 1980-1981, the memories seem to be made up entirely of conventions, interspersed with episodes of LOU GRANT and WKRP IN CINCINNATI.

Ah, but work wise, that same period was tremendously productive for me.   Lisa and I finished WINDHAVEN during that time, Gardner and I did a lot of work on “Shadow Twin,” and then I went right on and wrote all of FEVRE DREAM.   Some short stories as well.     My life, such that it was, was lived in my head, and on the page.

I wonder if it is the same for other writers?   Or is it just me?   I wonder if I will ever figure out the secret of having a life and writing a book at the very same time.

I certainly have not figured it out to date.

For the nonce, it is what it is.   My life is at home, on hold, and I am spending the days in Westeros with my pals Mel and Sam and Vic and  Ty.    And that girl with no name, over there in Braavos.

 

 

 

 

Current Mood: contemplative contemplative