Had a mostly pleasant weekend.  Helped the family with moving some stuff around the place, and then didn’t do anything useful on the various book projects.  This is both a good and a bad thing, of course.  It’s good to take a little breather, let yourself unwind and not thing about things too much.  It does mean, though, that you’re not getting much done.  I didn’t. So, this week is Godlike Machines week here at Casa Coode Street. Five of the six stories are in my hands, accepted and wonderful. One isn’t, but it’s coming.  I’m working on the introduction and story notes, and on doing some minor line edits.  The book is due with the publisher 30 April, so that’s like nine days.  Then, if everything goes to plan, it goes into the email and I get to focus on the next book in the pipeline. Of course, that’s if everything goes to plan.

I was glad no fish died, and I spent a little time reading Shaun Tan’s Tales from Outer Suburbia. It’s a beautiful, warm, slightly whimsical book of illustrated stories.  It’s nothing much like The Arrival, and I feel like I’ve seen artwork from it coming out for several years now, but I loved it. Why?  There is something about Shaun’s storytelling which is both kind and slightly whimsical. His stories aren’t filled with violence and darkness, even when they’re kind of dark, but rather with a sort of gentle wonder. In this case, the stories are about the gentle wonder of finding something strangely out of context which somehow still makes sense: a deepsea diver walking under a suburban underpass, an exchange student small enough to fit in an eggcup, a water buffalo that sits at the end of the street pointing to the solution to your problems.  It’s wonderful stuff. You should check it out.