Saturday, September 28, 2002
You probably know this already, but on the off chance you don't - Did you know that the name on _Hexwood_'s dedication-wrote-it-for page thingy is yours?
By the way, I've been meaning to write this for about a month now, so hah!

Hah indeed. Hexwood is a book by Diana Wynne Jones, and you can find out more about Diana at, or just read her books. One of the privileges of having kids is that you get to read out loud to them, and reading Diana out loud is a delight. Her books unpack very tightly, with scarcely a word wasted in a hundred thousand, and reading them silently it's easy to miss stuff without knowing it.

Anyway, yes, I did know she dedicated Hexwood to me. I wrote some Doggerel poetry about it, back when the book came out, and she sent me a copy. Hang on. I bet I can find it on the hard disk... here we go...

There's a kitten curled up in Kilkenny was given a perfect pot of cream
And a princess asleep in a thornwrapped castle who's dreaming a perfect dream
There's a dog in Alaska who danced with delight on a pile of mastodon bones
But I've got a copy of Hexwood (dedicated to me) by Diana Wynne Jones

There's an actress who clutches her oscar (and sobs, with proper impromptu joy),
There's a machievellian villain who's hit on a wonderf'lly evil ploy,
There's wizards in crystal castles and kings on their golden thrones
But I've got a copy of Hexwood -- dedicated -- to me! -- by Diana Wynne Jones

There's a fisherman out on the sea today who just caught the perfect fish,
There's a child in Luton who opened a genie-filled bottle, and got a wish,
There are people who live in glass houses have managed to outlaw stones
But I've got a copy of Hexwood, dedicated to me, by Diana Wynne Jones


Sitting in a Madison WI sushi restaurant this evening, I started writing the new Neverwhere novella, HOW THE MARQUIS GOT HIS COAT BACK, in a blank book for writing in that some nice person gave me at some point. It was not a happy experience, as the book turned out to be shi-shi enough to have little bits of flower petal in the paper, which might be okay if you're writing down your dreams in a thick felt pen, but which combine with a scritchy fountain pen to render the whole thing more or less illegible from the off. Which is rather irritating. I may see if I can find a thicker-nibbed fountain pen and darker ink. Meanwhile, I have learned all about how many pockets the marquis has in coat, and about the things that got lost in them...