Melbourne

I think all of the travel to the US for conventions has terminally distorted my ability to plan and pack for anything else.  It seems my default setting is to prepare for two weeks away from home without access to laundry facilities, and with enough entertainment on my person to cover two 24hr plus transit periods. As I pack for Melbourne – I leave in less than two hours – I’m finding myself more unpacking than packing. Taking things out I won’t need, remembering I can actually buy something I don’t have in Melbourne and so on. It does seem to be keeping the overall size of my packing down.

And of course, I’m going to Melbourne! I’m actually in my slightly anxious pre-departure phase, but I’m looking forward to seeing old friends, spending time in a wonderful city, and attending Continuum next weekend. It should, hopefully, be a wonderful time.

I will try to blog a little from the road, and to podcast if I can, but no promises. If I can’t, do look after the place and I’ll see you back here in a bit.

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Stress

It’s heading towards bedtime on a Tuesday evening and I just need to blog the stupidity of this out of my system, so feel free to ignore this as you please.  I come from a family that tends to handle stress poorly. I could see this growing up in my father and in my aunt, and have seen a little of it in my siblings. At one point in my life I thought I had reached a point where I handled stress very well, and was even quite offended when a friend said I could be a bit melodramatic.  However, over the past ten years, since becoming a husband, a parent, taking on Locus reviews editing, anthology editing, and the day job, I’ve come to realise I actually handle stress quite poorly.  This has not been an overly pleasant discovery. It’s something that has come to a head of late, with reasonable but persistent stresses at the day job, and sporadic outbursts of stressors in my other areas of activity. It’s certainly meant that every day for the past few weeks I’ve had some incredible burst of stress, had to work through it, then try to sleep and so on. At the end of it I find myself tired and ready for a break. It’s probably all to the good that I’m heading off to Victoria for ten days. The loved ones are staying home, keeping the house safe and making birthday plans, while I simply hope to relax as much as possible and come back something of a rejuvenated person.

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Sunday 9am

Almost got seven hours sleep last night. Woke to find eldest daughter had snuck into bed in the later hours of the morning. We’re all pretty much up now. With everything going on my thoughts are torn between day job needs, editing requirements, home stuff, and trip planning.

Trip planning is becoming a thing. I intend to make two trips this year: one to Melbourne in a week’s time and one to Toronto in November.  The Melbourne trip is the one on my mind. I need to make sure I have all of the pieces in place, and I don’t. The big stuff – plane, hotel etc is sorted – so I have events and packing to think about. I have been debating taking a laptop with me so I can podcast, but given I have a long bus trip in there somewhere I’m thinking that might not be appropriate. That would leave me dependent on the iPad for podcasting, and I’m just not confident that would work out. I also only have limited ability to publish from the iPad.  That means most likely no podcasting in Melbourne, and no Coode St for at least one week up ahead.

The Toronto planning is weird. An acceptable route has been found. The okay has been given to make the booking, and yet still I hold off. It’s not that I don’t want to go – I do – I think it’s just that I can’t quite take the thought of all of that plane travel.

In other news, I’m trying to find time to put new home accounting in place, get my taxes out of the way (2010/11 are ready to go and 2011/12 are progressing), and do some other stuff. My stereo is acting up again. The amp I bought in 2008 seems to be experiencing problems. That means repair, all sorts of mucking about, and not so much music for a while. I can use headphones, but I find since I had the hearing loss a few months back I’m less eager to use them.

Weirdly I am very eager to pick up a copy of the reissue of Ram by Paul & Linda McCartney. I have no time for it at all back in the day, but now rather fancy it’s ramshackle appeal. Worryingly, I’ve not read much of late. I have read 2.5 of the books I need to read before going to Melbourne, but despite being surrounded by books I think I want to read, I find myself not wanting to actually read much. Dang.

 

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And here’s what’s happening here…

I’ve written a note for the website several times in order to bring you up-to-date on recent events here at Coode Street, but one update was eaten by web-goblins and the others sit as notes here and there in various states of incompletion. So goes the life of the busy editor. The first, and possibly most interesting to some, is that I will be travelling to the United States at least once this year. I purchased the necessary plane tickets last Friday, so it’s definitely that I will be in Reno for Renovation, the 69th World Science Fiction Convention (17-21 Aug). The travel details are:

Sat 13 Aug: Fly to Sydney and overnight
Sun 14 Aug: Fly to San Francisco
Tues 16 Aug: Drive to Reno
Sun 21 Aug: Drive to San Francisco
Mon 22 Aug: Fly to Perth via LA and Brisbane arriving home on 24 August.

It must be official because the impressively well organised people from Reno have already sent me a draft programme so I will be on panels and around publicly, as well as looking to meet up with old friends and new during my stopover. Oh, and this trip shouldn’t impact on my attending World Fantasy.

The second, and still slightly secret piece of information is that I’ve agreed to edit a new science fiction anthology. The idea is that it will feature new hard SF/action adventure stories set in a settled, industrialised, pre-starflight solar system. There are still details to be confirmed, but it’s due at the publisher next July and should be out before Christmas, I think. Lots still to be confirmed, but I’ll let you know more as I can.

There has also been a lot of personal stuff which I don’t think I’ll go into in too much detail here. Suffice it say we had happy news, with my eldest daughter celebrating her birthday, and less happy news with her needing to go through some medication changes as a result of recent events. I think she’ll be fine, but it keeps life interesting.

Am I busy? I think so. Need to take care of family things while preparing the next year’s best for publication and getting the dreaded Cyberpunk ready to deliver pre-WorldCon.

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