stillsostrange: (Rilke)
Remember when I posted metrics here? I'm not sure I do either.

The Poison Court
Words today: 528
Words total: 15,832
Reason for stopping: Out of steam, and need to move furniture around before I go to bed.
Darling: Yes, but it's a bit long.
Tyop: n/a
Mean things: A letter from your ex, unsettling surprises

I'm at that awkward stage of plotting where I need to figure out who's scheming about what, and who knows about it, and how much of what Our Heroes are being told is the truth. And I'm starting to worry that it's taking too long to get some of our antags onscreen. But that's a second draft problem.

Despite an oppressive case of mope that lasted several days, this week has been pretty damn good. I climbed like a badass on Monday, deadlifted my own bodyweight* on Tuesday, danced on Wednesday**, and today not only did I make progress on a steeply overhung V2, but I also got a real massage, which has turned my neck into something other than a twisted column of hate. And, even better, when I went in for a PT session this morning, my therapist was so pleased with my progress and with my interval running strategy that he turned me loose. So I am running again. For five minute intervals and no more than 1.8 miles at a stretch yet, but sweet fishes is that better than not running at all.

* My current, still swollen with Portland evil, bodyweight, even. This means when I shed the bloat, I'll be lifting more than bodyweight. Assuming I don't put on more muscle by then.

** Walking from my car to the club, I lost the sole to one of my boots. Faced with the option of either sitting down on the sidewalk and sobbing or ripping off the other sole and dancing anyway, I chose the latter. It wasn't even the least comfortable footwear I've danced in.
stillsostrange: (Lily)
I have been moody and weepy and nearly anhedonic the past couple of days--stress and double-hormone PMS* are a winning combination--but tonight I went to the gym and sent a 5.10B and not one but two 5.10Ds. One of these was awfully easy, and I question the rating, but the other was harder, so hopefully at least one is legit. So I may have no joy in my life, but I am still a badass. Someday that might make me dangerous.

* My doctor wanted me to finish the round of pills I was in the middle of when I got my interuterine demon**. Saturday was my last dose of estrogen-based birth control. Now we'll see what the progesterone does.

** I really want to write a story about interuterine demons. I would also be happy to read other people's.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie Air)
Tonight I completed my lead climbing class at the gym, and am now lead certified. We'll see how well or quickly this translates to not being too petrified to lead outside. But it's definitely another step toward valkyriedom.

I'm no closer to a pull-up than I was a month ago, but my deadlift is up to 130 lbs. I will be deeply satisfied when I can lift my own weight.
stillsostrange: (Miss Muffet)
[ profile] stillsostrange: I get to have a pelvic ultrasound.
[ profile] matociquala: Eeee. Why?
[ profile] stillsostrange: My ob/gyn likes to make sure one's uterus is not oddly shaped, oddly sized, or full of bees before she does IUDs.
[ profile] matociquala: I suppose that makes sense. If it's bees... Awesome?
[ profile] stillsostrange: Better bees than daddy long-legs*.
[ profile] matociquala: That's a Cure song.

* Last time I went climbing outside, one of my friends disturbed a daddy long-legs nest while looking for a toehold. They came boiling out of the rock, down the cliff, and tried to swarm our bags. At least it was a toehold and not a handhold...
stillsostrange: (Default)
Tonight I sent a 5.11. I sent it with the help of a serious power belay, so there is salt to be taken, but still. I hauled, pushed, and scraped myself up the wall. Between this and Run For Your Lives, I declare Project Valkyrie a wild success. Right now I'm only short one goal, which is unassisted pull-ups. But I start weight training again in January, so I am pretty confident it will happen.
stillsostrange: (Sif)
Friday: 6 hours dayjob
Saturday: 6 hours dayjob
Sunday: 7 hours dayjob, ~3 hours gothercize. Dancing on a holiday weekend--I suspect my lungs are still coated in other people's sweat.
Monday: 5 miles elliptical
Tuesday: 1 hour session with trainer
Wednesday: 1/2 hour core class, climbing
Thursday: 1 mile stair machine, 1 mile treadmill, 1 mile some other sort of cross training machine thing. I don't even know. What I do know is that I love none of them like I love my elliptical machine.

(22 miles out of Hobbiton.)

Something beautiful happened Wednesday. I'm not suddenly sending V3s, but I did sail up an overhang that has defeated me for more than three freaking years. I was so stunned to have sent the route that I turned around and sent it again. I'm surprised a choir of angels didn't await me with hosannas at the top of the wall.

Also, my endurance running is getting better, but a mile on the treadmill still leaves me red and gasping alarmingly. I need a slow zombie apocalypse if I'm to have any chance at survival.

Sequels. These things are hard. The Bone Palace existed before I ever wrote TDC, and was always its own separate thing. But D2 builds almost entirely off Dreams, and needs to further an overarching plot while still doing its own stuff. I find this very strange and unnerving. Also, it means I finally have to figure out what the overarching plot is.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie Air)
I've slacked off on the weekly updates, which is probably for the best as progress has been slow. Progress is still slow, but I'm getting stronger again, and rebuilding stamina. I'm slightly less chickenshit on bouldering problems than I was a couple months ago, so that's good. I'm still not sending 5.10s again, but I can sail up 5.9s, so it'll come back.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie Air)
I sent another 5.10 (minus-ish, but still) tonight! After the Age of Sloth I've been going through, this is very encouraging. My bouldering still isn't back up to snuff, but I need a) lose the rest of this extra weight I've picked up (four pounds gone as of the end of last week, so yay Discipline), and b) get my beloved Coyotes resoled, because my Nagos are like comfy bedroom slippers--a suboptimal condition in a climbing shoe.

The poll looks promising, so there will be a sale. I'll probably start it on Wednesday.
stillsostrange: (Default)
Today was pretty awesome, in an understated way. First an anthology invite came through, for something I really want to be in. Of course this means scrambling madly to finish a story by the end of the month, but oh well. Also glamour-related was the news that as [ profile] matociquala's arm-candy, I don't have to plan my own plane tickets to Eurocon. This is a huge relief.

Next was bouldering with [ profile] fadethecat, who will be climbing circles around me in a couple of weeks. Yet another impetus to push myself up a grade or two. :P

The first day of serious dieting lifestyle change went well, concluding with mushroom & cannellini paprikas from Appetite for Reduction, served with fauxtato (or caulipots, as the book calls it--a combination of mashed cauliflower and potatoes). This might actually be better than the chickpea piccata, and stupidly healthy. I splurged and added a side of wilted beet greens. But don't worry that I'm becoming a filthy hippie; we used cheese and cream in the potatoes.

I've also written a thousand words today on the final chapter of Kingdoms, and will continue writing until it's finished. Then it flies away and I absolutely and for reals won't look at it again until editor and/or agent give me an edit letter.

Also, it rained, if only a pathetic drizzly amount.
stillsostrange: (Words)
I have not been update-avoidant the past week because of LJ ennui, but because of extreme busyness. [ profile] matociquala was here for a week, during which time we climbed four times, danced three nights, kayaked once, drank a lot, and crashed World Horror. I managed to hang out with [ profile] mr_earbrass, [ profile] vegan_vulcan, [ profile] fadethecat, the [ profile] handful_ofdusts, [ profile] stillnotbored, [ profile] marshallpayne1, [ profile] stina_leicht, Orrin, Camille, Andrew, Jessica, and many more! I snuck into the dealers room long enough to buy an orthoceras fossil pendant from Lillian Butler and a copy of A Rope of Thorns from the CZP table. Two trips to Peché were undertaken, with various companions. And I even got a little more editing done on Kingdoms.

This morning I deposited [ profile] matociquala at the airport, dropped the boy off at work, and took Gretchen to the vet. Gretchen's inner princess nature is once again manifesting with nasty allergies and autocannibalism, so she's currently wearing the Cone of Shame and full of pills. It's a hard life when one is both a princess and a shark.

Now I will eat some of the many leftovers crammed in my fridge, and try to do more revising.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie Air)
Kingdoms of Dust

Words today: 3,043. That is right. Three thousand motherfucking words. I am mighty.
Words total: 44,492
Reason for stopping: 3k goal met, and I'm tired.
Sustenance: A lot, but that was many hours ago and I'm hungry again. Alas.
Mean things: Nightmares, burns, bruises, wrestling cute boys in the dirt. That's meaner than it sounds, really.
Deaths: None
Darling: They rode slowly to spare the horses; they rode in silence to spare themselves.
Things not yet named: The oasis that became Ta'ashlan, the cathedral of the Unconquered Sun, the city's old quarter.

In addition to my word-might, tonight was also a good climbing night. I felt much stronger than I did last week, and made serious progress on this stemmy bastard of a V2 that goes through a tunnel. I thought I would dislocate my hip stemming, but I finally got the hang of it. Now I just have to get the second half, which involves a sharp corner and apelike upper body strength.
stillsostrange: (Default)
1. My starred Publishers Weekly review, let me show you it. This makes me all warm and gooshy inside.

2. My vintage nurse's cape came today, and it is a lovely thing. Heavy and scratchy, but lovely. Now I have to get the last minute dress, cap, and makeup.

3. I leave for WFC in two and a half days! I have no programming, so the odds of finding me in the bar are pretty good.

4. Climbing tonight. Nothing outstanding, but a solid night.

5. There is no fifth thing. I think that review counts for two.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie)
Despite Monday's V2(-), I continue to not send my project V2. I get stuck on the antepenultimate move every time, and am not confidant enough with the holds to hoist myself up. By the end of the night I couldn't send easier problems that I sent last week. Blah.

Next Wednesday, problem. Next Wednesday.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie Air)
I sent my first V2 tonight! It's like progress!
stillsostrange: (Default)
Kingdoms of Dust

Starting wordcount: 36,452
Ending wordcount: 37,021
Sustenance: cappuccino, edamame, oatmeal, pea soup & grilled cheese, chocolate
Displacement activities: buying catfood, dishes, climbing
Research: names, beekeeping, Egyptian gardens
Darling du jour: The last tame lioness had died months ago and not yet been replaced. Asheris was just as glad--watching wild things grow fat and slow in gilded collars struck too close to home.
Tyop du jour: n/a
Mean things: gilded cages
Deaths: n/a
Things accomplished: Chapter 3 has been revised for Operation Slightly More Conflict. I've started a new chapter 4 to keep the different PoVs balanced, and to introduce various players and conflicts. Also, Jinn P.I.

I came so close to sending a V2 tonight. I'm one move away, but after fighting my way through the crux my arms were shaking and my fingertips raw. Next week, problem. Next week.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie Air)
Today the Partners in Climb and I went to Reimer's, and I led my first route. It was a 5.5, with only two bolts, and I could probably boulder the thing if I had to, but still. I led my first route.
stillsostrange: (Valkyrie Air)
Thursday: --
Friday: --
Saturday: Kayaking, 1+ hours. Pictures of the kayaking Action Corgi can be found on my Facebook.
Sunday: Dancing, several hours. It probably just undid the drinking I did beforehand. Oh absinthe bar, you are my fondest enemy.
Monday: --
Tuesday: Dog-walking, 1 mile
Wednesday: Climbing
stillsostrange: (Stomp)
ArmadilloCon was a blast. I met and hung out with fun people, ate overpriced hotel food, drank only a reasonable amount, and gave away several copies of TDC. (Due to a snafu with Ingram, the dealers' room had none, so my stash of author's copies came in very handy.) I moderated a panel and no one died, and two people sat through my reading.

This afternoon I fled the con early to go climb, and spent the day route-setting. The Partners In Climb and I (my two compatriots did most of the work) set a bouldering problem, and then I finished an easy 5.7 that someone started and abandoned two months ago. I got a bukkit and everything!

And now, because I'm tired but not sleepy yet, a long guess-the-song meme. No googling, yadda yadda. Bonus points if you guess what they all have in common. I even skipped the German songs.

1. What you see is what you believe and I can see how you want it to be

2. The in-crowd say it's cool to dig this chanting thing "Rock the Casbah" - The Clash ([ profile] desperance)

3. Conquer and divide, choose your favorite side, loving you is not good for me

4. Hey hey hey hey, now now now now. Hey hey hey hey, now now now now. "This Corrosion" - The Sisters of Mercy ([ profile] mekkavandexter and [ profile] cmpriest)

5. Disconnected but not alone, scream to the tune of the background noise "Entropy" - VNV Nation ([ profile] b1bl10v0re)

6. And I forget how to move when my mouth is this dry, and my eyes are bursting hearts in a blood-stained sky "Homesick" - The Cure ([ profile] b1bl10v0re)

7. You used to say, "live and let live," you know you did, you know you did, you know you did "Live and Let Die" - Guns N Roses (1/2 [ profile] katallen, 1/2 [ profile] greatalexanders)

8. At the end of days, at the end of time, when the sun burns out will any of this matter? "Further" - VNV Nation ([ profile] b1bl10v0re)

9. All the school kids so sick of books, they like the punk and the metal band "Walk Like An Egyptian" - The Bangles ([ profile] graygirl)

10. I've been waiting here, waiting for faith and the word to fall. "Dark" - Gary Numan ([ profile] alecaustin)

11. You can't stop the pain of your children crying out in your head. They always said that the living would envy the dead. "One of the Living" - Tina Turner ([ profile] katallen)

12. Laissez faire, mi amour, c'est la vie. Should I return to shore or swim back out to sea? "Everything Goes to Hell" - Tom Waits ([ profile] curgoth)

13. Kneeling roses disappearing into Moses' dry mouth, breaking into Fort Knox stealing our intentions "BYOB" - System of a Down ([ profile] whiskeychick

14. Arm yourself because no one else here will save you. The odds will betray you and I will replace you. "You Know My Name" - Chris Cornell ([ profile] katallen)

15. Like Prometheus we are bound, chained to this rock of a brave new world, our godforsaken lot. "Black Sun" - Dead Can Dance ([ profile] whiskeychick)

16. All we do crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see "Dust In the Wind", but not the Kansas version (1/2 to [ profile] b1bl10v0re and [ profile] nathreee)

17. And in the mirror, who is that looking back? And I'm scared of whoever this is livin' in my skin. "Damage I've Done" - The Heads ([ profile] whiskeychick

18. With no provision but an open face along the straits of fear "Kashmir", but not Led Zeppelin (1/2 to [ profile] b1bl10v0re)

19. Living a law just short of delusion, when we fall in love there's confusion "This Must Be The Place I've Waited Years To Leave" - Pet Shop Boys ([ profile] desperance and [ profile] whiskeychick)

20. And we’re happy here, but we live in fear, we’ve seen a lot of temples crumble "Dance Along The Edge" - Concrete Blonde ([ profile] alecaustin)

21. Shakes your hand, takes your gun, walks you out of the sun "Destroy Everything You Touch" - Ladytron ([ profile] curgoth)

22. I lived through too many aeons, I've risen up and I fell the fall, I have been there and I have done that - "Mercy" - KMFDM ([ profile] b1bl10v0re)

23. When I have to die then I want to strangle myself in your black hair "A Hole In The Wall" - KMFDM ([ profile] b1bl10v0re)

24. All those special memories. Now I bleed for you--burn for me. "Blood & Fire" - Type O Negative ([ profile] curgoth)

25. I'm the dusk, I'm the frightening calm, I'm a hole in the pipeline*, I'm a road-side bomb

26. Every tower must be razed to the dust from which it came. None will be spared, no remnant saved. "Kingdom" - VNV Nation (lj user="b1bl10v0re">)

27. We drink elixirs that we refine from the juices of the dying

28. And that voice that was hers alone still resounds in me. She left me dislocated, disavowed, and twitching. "Tragedy (For You)" - Front 242 ([ profile] mekkavandexter)

29. Here by my side, an angel. Here by my side, the devil. Never turn your back on me. "Weapon" - Matthew Good ([ profile] atheilen and [ profile] mekkavandexter)

30. When I close my eyes, when I look your way, when I meet the fear that lies inside "Dominion" - The Sisters of Mercy (I'm actually listening to "Dominion/Ozymandius", but I will accept any of the three versions.) ([ profile] alecaustin, [ profile] cmpriest, and [ profile] cpolk)

*I hear this every time as "I'm a hole in the plotline".
stillsostrange: (Default)
Another thousand words or so today, and the battle of the salt mine is concluded. Next up, get Isyllt off the boat and into a fight! This draft is awfully rough so far, but I'm also growing very fond of it.

Darling du jour: Murad al Badra didn't think of tiger gods or ghulim as he followed Mehrani into the mine, or the history of the church. Blood, however, was very much on his mind.

I climbed tonight, the first serious climbing night since Skippy. I only did 5.9s and V0s, but I sent them, and felt strong again. That's always nice.
stillsostrange: (Default)
by Amanda Downum, age 30 and 11/12ths

Day 1: Awoke at 3:30 AM to go to the airport. Boo. Security line at Austin-Bergstrom was STILL stupidly long. Sung the praises of Southwest as my flights were timely. [ profile] matociquala picked me up at the airport, fed me sandwiches, and took me kayaking on Union Pond.

Day 2: Woke up at a more sane but still early hour to leave for NYC. Endured the world's most uncomfortable train seat for an hour and a half. Got to the city and had lunch with Bear's fabulous editor, and then hung out at the d.b.a. bar before meeting my even-more-fabulous editor. (Sorry, it's contractual--my editor is always the most fabulous.) Met people who had formerly existed only in the internet. I remain fond of the city despite the noise, exhaust, and crowds--I need to test that by staying for more than a few hours.

(Photos of days 1 & 2)

Day 3: Slept. Went to the store. [ profile] batwrangler joined us, bearing ridiculous quantities of meat, and grilling ensued. I napped a lot.

Day 4: Climbed in the gym and walked the dog. Wrote part of a scene for "Spell 81A" so [ profile] matociquala would stop hitting me.

Day 5: Kayaking in Laurel Marsh, which was gorgeous, and involved paddling uphill on the way back. Word of the day: portage. Then we picked up [ profile] hawkwing_lb from the train station, and drove her all over Connecticut. I was forced into a Hot Topic to find jelly bracelets. I may or may not have cat-hissed at the place first.

(Laurel Marsh photos)

Day 6: Got up, drove to Pinnacle Rock, hiked in and set two routes. Then climbed them, under the baleful gaze of the daystar. I feel a little Pollyanna, but I was fine with trap rock. Ate food, hydrated, and scrubbed off the layer of filth so we could get ready to go gothing. I was very happy to go dancing, but Haven reminded me of something long forgotten: goth + raver = gravers. I'm glad the makers of glowsticks and D-ring festooned midget-smugglers are still in business, I guess. But there were pretty boys there, including Draco Malfoy in an Alien Sex Fiend shirt.

(Pinnacle photos)

Day 7: The beach! Both beaches we went to didn't allow swimming, which was annoying, but the water was cold enough that I was glad I had an excuse not to be butch. The Atlantic stole my glasses, which made me cranky, but then we had lunch at a very nice tiki bar in New London and found some awesome murals, which mollified me slightly. But my insurance won't pay for new glasses till July, so the world is full of frustration, blurriness, and illegal driving right now. After the beach we drove to Wallingford and climbed some more, and then went home and slugged.

(Beach photos)

Day 8: Back on a plane. Still very happy with Southwest. And then home, to find the CEM for Bone Palace waiting for me, along with a super-awesome present from [ profile] truepenny.

The End


stillsostrange: (Default)

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