October 28th, 2009



Goodness it's pouring down! I feel like I wasn't properly prepared for this - though I no longer watch the News so that could be why. And yes, poor Benji was put outside today though he is getting a playdate this afternoon when my Mum collects him in a couple of hours.

I doubt he'll be impressed with me.


A Book of Endings reviewed in The Age

I was aware the review of A Book of Endings was coming but was reminded about it when I woke up Sunday morning to a bunch of sales in my inbox. The buzz has kept on coming all week with several new interests for reviews and interviews so I have been very very curious to read just what Lucy Sussex thought of the book. narrelle kindly offered to post me a copy of the review on Sunday (all hail the power of Twitter) and it arrived in my post box last night (all hail the power of Australia Post). To whit, the review:

The busiest short-story writers in Australia are working in speculative fiction, a mixture of dark fantasy, science and other unsettling stuff. They are also some of the best, although largely ignored by the major local publishers. Biancotti has won various awards and been commended in international listings. She is working in the Zeitgeist of The Road and Steven Amsterdam - the apocalypse and afterwards - but at much shorter length. There are 21 short stories here. Most have the germ of a novel within them. A robot dog rusts in a decaying royal palace, but sticks to his duty. A girl slips into the interstices of Sydney. Thugs tussle over black market electricity. What Biancotti will do with more space, and a novel framework, remains to be seen. But the stories are succinct and powerful. Best ordered online, as the publisher is a micropress.
-- Lucy Sussex, The Age, October 25, 2009


Well? How is it?

I'm really not sure why, but I've been trying to remain invisible over here. My job is a short term contract for a very much desktop job. I've got one output to produce at the end, no crazy daily deadlines or people ringing up to yell stuff at me, hopefully no memos to write. One long report to get stuck into and take to publication. And if I do that within my timeframe, there's other stuff here that my boss has in mind for me to do.

It just feels like the kind of job one lurks in whilst doing? And as much as I try to be invisible, the team is very welcoming, keep popping their heads in to see how I'm going and that all is ok and I have eVerything I need and am I coming to morning tea? Just now the manager of the other half of the section, someone whom I was introduced to and later told, he's on the phone most of the time (I have no idea what his job is but he is on the phone most of the time), just came out of a meeting and stopped to say hello and said my name when he did. Probably not succeeding on the invisible. I guess I don't want to like it too much here cause I might want to stay.

My office is very noisy - it's in the middle of the building, smack bang in all the action. But damn the roof is noisy!! It sounds like it's being rained on even when it isn't or that there's a whole troupe of ghosts up there drumming their loud and enormous fingers on my roof. I forgot my headphones today to where to drown it out. It's very distracting.

The toilets meet my satisfaction. Which is actually a very hard thing to do. So am quite pleased with that. The kitchen facilities, likewise, are good. Things look clean. I am back on the instant coffee which is bad. Yesterday and today A_ let me go visit her and make coffee with her and I switched yesterday to rooibos tea which is helping. The instant coffee though reminds me of the good old postgrad days.

This section is back to my roots, being far more sciency than where I have been the last 4 years. It's very comforting and soul-lifting, though I wonder if I am sciency enough - lots of specialists in my area here who know lots. But would be a good chance for learning things if I did get to stay.


It's not my problem

I'm not an early adopter - I don't like to own the first of anything when it first comes out. When things come out, they are expensive, they have bugs in them, they have unforeseen issues to be sorted out and they are the version upon which things will be modelled but improved upon.

For years I've watched my uncle and my brother-in-law with some amusement as they early adopt and then complain.

But these days, I want some kind of button I can press for early adopters that says: You had to be/have the first. Suck it up. Mine will always be better because I *waited*.

I'm reminded of when I finally bothered to buy myself an ipod, got my 80GB for less than the 20GB was when it came out, and because Apple felt like it, they upsized it to the video one. My BIL thought I'd like to trade. I think not.

Yep, I'm probably gonna buy myself the B&N reader, it's probably going to be better and cheaper. But I'm gonna wait for the second model.

I'm also going to wait for next year's batch of the swine flu vac.

Oddly though I am the complete opposite when it comes to fiction.



Yoga was fantastic tonight! I walked into the room just after 6 and our teacher stops the conversation she was having and says to me, "I just finished "Siren Beat"! I couldn't put it down. I haven't started the other story because I just want to mull it over." Feedback doesn't get better than that!

I can still do Marichyasana A and B. Yay. I've been doing chair yoga at work. Every now and then I just do a few back twists and stretches and things because I don't want to stiffen up. This is probably what you are actually supposed to do and is called maintenance but yeah, for me it's all gotta be about the prize. Also, I am starting to see the possibility of the half lotus on my left side. Maybe not by Christmas but we'll see. My bend backs are getting less painful too - I think that must mean more back strengthening has happened which also should be good to fight against all that sitting at the desk.

On the way home, I picked up Benji from my Mum's and I thought I was being very clever returning a bunch of borrowed DVDs, review book for D, a book of my Dad's that I have no idea how it got to be in my library since I have my own copy of the same book, and the two books that I finished this weekend. And OMG! Outclassed is all I can say. I ended up leaving with THREE books - one of the books I returned which she wanted me to put with all my other second hand books that I am collecting to resell or whatever. And two more books by the same authors. Net increase in borrowed books!!!! Though, these are crime novels and I'm quite enjoying the switch in genre for my relaxation reading at the moment.

But now I must put nose to the graphic novel I need to read tonight.


Seven Quirks Meme

Tagged by linstar

A. List seven habits/quirks/facts about yourself.
B. Tag seven people to do the same.
C. Do not tag the person who tagged you or say that you tag "whoever wants to do it".

1. I love horseracing. I avidly follow the Victorian Spring Carnival and get my mother to place my Melbourne Cup bet at the local TAB for me. Cept she usually also places money on several other horses and so even when I win, it somehow ends up even.

2. My favourite nightclub ever was called the Taipan Room and it played hard core heavy metal and was filled with 18 year old boys. I'd drag my friends there and dance on top of the podium till closing time. The club got closed after some shots were fired in the alley way next to the entrance.

3. I've never not been a feminist. I got ejected from Bat Mitzvah class once, when I was 12, for refusing to fill in the task sheet entitled "How to be a good wife". (Course maybe if I'd paid more attention then, nah ... I'm good!)

4. I'm shy. Or at least I used to be painfully, unbelievably shy. I used to fake illness during my school years so as not to have to participate in the public speaking awards. I worked very hard at becoming unshy. I joined a Toastmasters club and forced myself to make speeches and speak in from of people every week for over a year. After the year, I won the club and the area and then placed second in the state speaking competitions for Best Humorous Speech. I'm still getting used to the idea that I am not actually shy anymore.

5. I don't like Moby Dick.

6. I have a green thumb.

7. I can make a flower shape out of my tongue - and no I'm not going to show you.

I tag vodkandlime, pharaoh_katt, benpayne, jo1967, editormum, cassiphone and jedinic.