December 8th, 2005

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Times like this, I love editing so much

Just finished editing another draft of the second book in the Dream and a Lie trilogy, which is due to be published next year. God, I LOVE editing that and just love the thing to pieces. This is what I'm talking about, in case anybody is wondering. I feel so privileged to get to work on this and so in awe of Fiona and her gifts, although the woman is so meek she dies every time I say that.
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Weiiiiiiird dreams

Well, last night I wound up dropping off into Weird Dreamland.

First, I couldn't sleep because I kept slipping into thinking about this thing described in Fiona's book. Now, if I say that this thing is called The Fourth Cleansing, will that make it clear that this was NOT a good vision to have? It was like falling into a pit of doom. Even the hunger pangs I was having got transformed into these black spirit demons chasing me. I was still AWAKE when this was happening, so I was scared to sleep. Got up to sleep on the couch and found the visions somewhat less there, but then I kept thinking about the book in general, like obsessive thoughts about certain scenes and characters, imagining them in my mind.

I woke up around 6 and felt ready for my regular bed again, so I went there and proceeded to have a massively screwed up dream about scifi/fantasy cons. It was some massive con like Dragon*Con, only it wasn't D*C. I think it might've been something in Italy. Anyway, Storm and I were doing a con track like we've done at Lunacon, D*C, etc., only I was finding it all really confusing. One issue was that the con was taking place in multiple buildings in a town and I kept getting lost. Also, I kept falling asleep. The worst part was when there was this great, big "headline" talk going on, featuring Storm and I, and I was in my hotel room sleeping until 1 minute beforehand! So I rush off to this talk, which is set for 3 a.m., mind you, and I haven't had a chance to do my hair, clothes, anything. I look totally lame. And then right after crowd introductdions, I fall asleep! I wake up the next day and Storm, the con staff and everybody is yelling at me for falling asleep on a panel, but I have no memory of it. I am really mad though and vow to make up for it. I decide that to give people a chance to talk to me again (why I think I am so important, no idea), I'm going to set up a big online chat that day. So I post stuff in Storm fan groups about the chat and set a time. Since most people don't have laptops at the con, we use a big computer lab donated by a cyberbar nearby. So all us fans are sitting in a room together chatting online, instead of talking. If that's not what a con is about, I don't know what is.
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Some Heavy News

Today I went in for a follow-up with my doctor, who wanted to see if I'm still so sleepy. I've actually been doing a bit better and have in fact been working out, so it was a pretty cheerful visit overall.

EXCEPT when they did my weigh-in, turns out I gained 3 lbs. over last visit (2 weeks ago) and am most certainly the heaviest I have ever been. I just crossed over from medium-risk overweight into the bottom of high... and I really don't want to be there. The boys gave me their usual pep talk (well, more like a down talk) and I have my own ideas about what to do, but overall I am feeling pretty discouraged. I don't want to have to buy Size 18 clothes, but I have less and less choice. The only pair of jeans I have that feets just split in the crotch :( So lots of loose skirts for me. Blahahahaah.

I have a cool piece of software I use to track my weight and, occasionally, exercise, diet, etc., and according to the stats, this year has been a year of gaining weight. My weight is up 15-20 lbs. this year. I did lose 10 lbs. over the summer but it came back... and then some. I swear, I get so determined and do diet and exercise like a good girl, but as soon as I make any significant progress, which usually take three months, I bag it. I'll go on a vacation, come back, and the whole routine is gone. In two weeks I lose the fitness and gain 10 lbs.

December is NOT the month to start trying a new diet -- and by diet, I mean eating sensible CDC-type food recomendations, not eating rice cakes, taking pills, etc. -- but I will keep on exercising. I find that easy and I seem more fit than I have a right to be. Does it help my weight? Apparently not, but it does make me feel better. I keep thinking the thing that would most help me is to have a diet counselor or nutritionist (who is NOT Caleb or Daniel) whose job it is to loom over me and threaten me into being good -- for good. I respond very well to authority, like a teacher, but very badly to friends and relatives.

Oh, and in case anybody wonders, yes, I had my thyroid tested, and it's fine. I have a sister with Grave's disease and my paternal grandmother had that too, where you suddenly get tired and fat without enough justification. Doctor has tested that several times and concluded it's just a question of too much food, too little activity.
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Bummed out

I have had a suck-all day. For some reason I feel like today is a throw-back to last winter, when I was super depressed. I really feel crap today, spiritually, for no reason. I mean, there was that scale reading at the doctor, but I don't know if that's the sole reason. I've been piddling around the house like an invalid all afternoon, unable to do anything and feeling low. Bah. I did manage to do the dishes and clean up the main room, but that is about all. How sad. I really want to get the rest cleaned before the trip tomorrow. Hopefully something'll snap into place for me.

Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree

Just out of curiosity, is there anybody else out there who's a fan of the kids' book Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree?

This is a huge family favorite or the Darlings and I have the original, dog-eared hand-me-down 1963 copy all my siblings read, while all my siblings have bought new copies for their kids. I *love* that book -- the best rhymes and wonderful illustrations.

The opener:

Mr. Willowby's Chritmas tree
Came by special delivery.
Full and fresh and glistening green --
The biggest tree he had ever seen

The story is about a rich man who gets a tree that's too tall, so the top is chopped off, then picked out of the garbage by a workman who puts it up in his humble home, only to find it's too tall, so he chops off the top, which is picked up by a bear, and on down the line until at the end the mice in Mr. Willowby's house have a teeny tiny Christmas tree they party around.

Anybody looking for a great kids' book with a holiday theme, I definitely recommend this book, which is easily ordered, as it's magically still in print.
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Being social

I was still feeling crappy when I realize our neighborhood Christmas party was going on across the street at The Mark. Even though I was NOT in a "people" mood, I figured going over there might cheer me up. It did! There was a great spread of food, all donated by local restaurants, and spiked eggnog. I could've got drinks at the bar using the drink tickets but I stuck to the 'nog. Saw all my neighbors and talked to a bunch of them about Germany. Then there was karaoke and I was coerced into my first EVER karaoke performance: "White Christmas." Everybody congratulated me afterward and said I sounded very different than they expected, very sultry and feminine. Too bad there were no Marlene Dietrich songs for me because that would really suit me karaoke-wise. I also chimed in with group karaoke of "Fight for Your Right To Party!" (PARRRRRRRRRRRTY!) and "Silver Bells."