Category Archives: Journal

Saturday morning, back at home, still in the endless pandemic

No reading this week at all, which is not great. Sleeping is very poor, which is also not great. Spent a few nights in a hotel so we could get through painting parts of the house, which was, no fault of the hotel, not great. Today, new carpet in one room and some cleaning and organisation elsewhere in advance of the next round of changes. What else? Some day job stuff, some editing stuff – nothing too interesting.

Youngest did have a glam filming thing yesterday. Was radiant and came home in a great mood. We ended up watching Ted Lass, which was a goofy fun Christmas piece of fluff.

At the same time, a good portion of the country is in lockdown. Not here for now, but who knows? It’s endless and it’s wearing and it’s a million times worse for those actually locked down in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra and elsewhere.  Good thoughts to them. But this was supposed to have been a fun weekend. Right now I was supposed to be in Adelaide hanging out with dear friends I’ve already not seen in over two years, as time slips away. I think we might try again some time in 2022, but every moment delayed is precious.  Hang on to those around you.

Early Monday morning, same pandemic

Well, it doesn’t look like blogging every day is a thing, though I am planning to keep to it. Another night’s poor sleep, after what was  a pretty good weekend.  Didn’t do much reading, but did pitch a new book, have wine and chat at Keira’s (which was a highlight of the weekend), see friends for spicy soup dinner at King Hotpot, catch up with the brother over at Sayer’s in Leederville for breakfast on Saturday, do some house stuff, get Jessica and me out to Yahava for our driveby,  and then see Russell (far too long) for hot chicken sandwiches at Drasko’s.

We also packed up Jessica’s room because this week is painting week. We’ll have a painter here and it’s going to be disruptive as heck, but it’s the first step. We risk lagging behind, but it should be followed by new patio, redecorated family room, and repainting elsewhere in the house. Hopefully, by 1 December that will all be done. We shall see. Oh and there was also an edit-drama, but that should be under control.

Like many, I’m watching and enjoying Jean Smart in Hacks and keeping up with other stuff. I’ll report in as the week goes on, but interesting times here. Hopefully some kind of path to better times.

Underslept, early on a Thursday (not much later in), the same pandemic

I hurt my left foot a while ago. I thought it had healed up just find, but the last day or two – not great. And then sleeping. Sleeping these days is weird too. Had a terrible night’s sleep the night before last and a below par, though better, one last night. Hopefully heading in the right direction, though.

Another scare yesterday that had Perth wondering if there’d be a lockdown. It’s a strange thing seeing all of your colleagues at work going around saying “Mark’s doing a presser” and then grouped around desks, watching video to see what’s going to happen. It feels another lockdown at some point is inevitable before we’re done, and if it is we’ll cope, but glad it wasn’t today.

Watched the latest episode of the rather fabulous season 3 of Miracle Workers, which had a memorable musical performance from Daniel Radcliffe, and then tried to get some reading in before bed. I think I was flagging too much, though.

You’ll note no much talk of editing or proposals for new projects. The editing is happening – got some Locus and Tor stuff moved forward – but the proposals remain a bit stalled. Maybe this coming weekend.

For now, back to my book, and then off to the office for the day.

Reading again, early August…

Far from the Light of Heaven, Tade Thompson
Far from the Light of Heaven, Tade Thompson

Just a quick note. Should the question arise, I’m currently reading Tade Thompson’s fifth novel, Far from the Light of Heaven, his first book-length work since completing the Wormwood trilogy.

The publisher describes the book like this:

A tense and thrilling vision of humanity’s future in the chilling emptiness of space from a rising giant in science fiction, Arthur C. Clarke Award winner Tade Thompson

The colony ship Ragtime docks in the Lagos system, having traveled light-years to bring one thousand sleeping souls to a new home among the stars. But when first mate Michelle Campion rouses, she discovers some of the sleepers will never wake.

Answering Campion’s distress call, investigator Rasheed Fin is tasked with finding out who is responsible for these deaths. Soon a sinister mystery unfolds aboard the gigantic vessel, one that will have repercussions for the entire system—from the scheming politicians of Lagos station, to the colony planet Bloodroot, to other far-flung systems, and indeed to Earth itself.

That seems pretty fair.  I’m about a quarter-way through it, and it’s terrific. I’ve pre-ordered my copy,  and have an advance reading copy from the publisher too. I think I’d recommend you consider grabbing it when it comes out, just based on what I’ve read so far.  It’s giving my favourite SF novel of 2021 so far, Arkady Martine’s A Desolation Called Peace a run for its money.

Mad hours, Wednesday, later in the P—

So sometimes I wake up at 1.30am or so, and sometimes I cannot get back to sleep. Today is the morning after one of those nights. I’m guessing I got about four hours sleep, which is enough to be barely functional. No super reason for it, but it’s gonna be a long-ish day.

I’ll add, not an apology, but a comment. This last outpouring of blog entries has been pretty dull, even for me. Right now that’s what they are, so feel free to ignore them or not. I can sort of think how there might be a bit more substance in coming weeks, but let’s see.