March 21st, 2009


customer service?

I pretty much hate every phone service provider in Australia.

I just sat down to sort my week's mail and found a letter from OPtus informing me that from May 2009, every paper bill from Optus will cost me $2.20.

I think that's bloody outrageous.



I am in tax hell.

It is taking forever and the pain only worsens with each damn receipt or transaction. I've done all my personal stuff. I just have to finish off TPP for 07/08 *Just* seems such an amusing word - I left this all in an enormous mess.

I'm currently reconciling the ASif! Donations people generously made to me at the end of 2007 when my personal situation changed dramatically. I'm being humbled and moved by the individual donations of support. This would be one of the reasons why I took so long to sort these. Gosh I excel at procrastination! Course the other thing I have been avoiding is The Number. And the colour The Number comes in - red or black. I'll be knowing that soon enough. Sigh.

The question is of course, whether I follow through on sorting this mess beyond the 07/08 tax year so as to NEVER EVER have to feel this pain again (I seem to remember saying this last year and ... TPP is far more complicated now that it was then.)


Back to it.

Phone Conversation with my Mum

Me: I call to bring you the good news that I have mastered the art of the ganache!


Mum: You mean, you've mastered melting chocolate and pouring cream into it and mixing it together?

Me: Well, if you are going to insist on dumbing these things down to the most common of terms ...

In the midst of tax hell, I am also finishing of NCN edits and making truffles for the NCN Launch. I like to multi-task :) Lemon raspberry mini muffins are next.

(Kathryn, I only got 21 truffles from the recipe - didn't think my balls were *that* big ... *grins*)


A Good Day

Actually, a great day! I slept really well last night. Got up at a reasonable hour and headed straight out, armed with a list, and ran errands. First stop was a takeaway coffee and I bumped into a cousin of mine that I have been really crap at catching up with since she moved back to Perth. Had a good chat - she keeps up with my TPP via Facebook and sheepishly confessed her thoughts on Twilight having seen commentary on my photos over there. The world is a funny place. She's giving birth in 2 weeks and invited me to the Bris (circumcision).

I picked up my fabulous shoes that I ordered in last weekend to cheer me up (purple and tarnished gold, with ribbons, there will be a photo). Lovely experience - the sales assisant was so helpful last weekend and called me yesterday to say they were in and then remembered me as I walked in the shop. Those shoes are gonna be fun and happy to wear, I reckon.

I did mess up one errand - took in my paperwork to deposit a cheque I am having trouble banking only to realise I forgot the cheque. Doh! However, I also did a massive food shop - I haven't done one in quite a while and the cupboard was quite bare. Did the lot - staples, spices, meal plan for this coming week and catering for Swancon things.

Came home. Did taxes, sorted receipts, did laundry, cleaned kitchen and tidied hallway.

Still doing taxes, and editing, and baking. But I realised, actually? I am happy today. Heh! And maybe being productive, and getting things done contributes to my sense of well being. That's something to remember, I think.

Also, I have a theory about food and eating. I'm not a particularly interested in food eater (I like ice cream and chocolate and sweets - that's my downfall). So cooking for myself, I can fall into food ruts. Eating the same thing over and over and usually just the main item - so lasagne, or a pasta or a stir fry - but no anything else - salad, or whatever. And geez how would that not get depressing? So I've been experimenting with adding contrasting flavours and colours - so adding pickles, or a marinated something on the side or a condiment or throwing chopped chillis into pasta. Just something the add an element of "different" to my palate and thus to life. Tonight I am having antipasto for dinner with kiwi juice. Colours and flavours! Yay!

Canterbury 2100

We've worked out between us (Cat, Dirk and I) that I am in possession of the last few copies of Canterbury 2100 - there may be a few more in the odd indie bookstore but otherwise, these are all there are.

There will be some on our table at Swancon. Otherwise, you can buy a copy at til sold out.

On editing

Wow. I am down to the final edits on the final NCN story. All the rest have gone to layout and many have been proofed and sit in the final pdf document. This last story has been edited back and forth with the author for several weeks now. We've been discussing the minor details and I expect this will be the last time through.

Which means I think I will be going to sleep tonight having finished editing New Ceres Nights.

I had a minor panic attack thinking that it would be weird to be not editing this book anymore. And also that it would massively reduce the amount of editing workload I was carrying - which would be weird. And then I thought "oh I will have time to finish the finances, the planning for the book launch, reading (ha!), catching up on ASif! and LSS". And then I remembered I had ... A Book of Endings, Shiny 5, Horn ... as much editing on as I had before in fact!!!

It's a funny thing but I can't read and edit in the same headspace. I haven't read anything really since about January. Editing is so fine-detailed and you can't not edit as you read even when reading for fun. So reading for fun ceases to be. I find, in any case. And that means, I guess, I edit all in one intense bit of the year and then do all my reading at another intense part of the year.

Editing for NCN has been ... *very* fine-detailed. Normally when you edit shorts, you make sure the world building holds for the story itself, and then you move on. You don't have to care what colour robes peripheral characters are wearing or what city a certain brothel was in or in what exact timeframe X happened. In New Ceres, the authors who have chosen to write in it, across the projects, have done so with great enthusiasm. Every single one immerses themselves in all the published work. Each picks out tiny details I don't even remember and spins them and runs with them. I've queried all sorts of things and the author will come back with, "yo but in this story/part of the wiki/piece of NF..." It's crazy! I love that they love the details and I love how many of them have riffed off other stories. But gosh the editing, in terms of for internal consistency both across this book and with Angel Rising and the first two issues of the webzine has been intensive. Don't tell Tehani but I've been moonlighting with the Biancotti collection just to do something totally different!!

Ahh... New Ceres Nights - you're all grown up! *sniff* I'm gonna miss ya.