Saturday, June 28, 2008

post interrupted

Let's see...

A quiet sort of day. Took Maddy to get her eyebrows waxed. ("I can do that," I told her. "We have candles." She properly ignored me.)

I went down to say hullo to the bees -- the Olga hive is busily growing two new queens, and it's nice seeing the Olga bees happily bustling around the two queen cells. With luck, one of them will leave her cell, go off on a successful mating flight and return to repopulate the hive and lead it on to glory.

See the two things that look like peanuts? Queen cells. The first one to hatch will despatch the unhatched with her stinger...

Right now, as I type this, Maddy and I are rewatching the Bad Wolf and Parting of the Ways episodes of Doctor Who, because Maddy wanted to be reminded of them, due to the end of Turn Left. (And saying more would be spoilers.)

Hey Neil,

I'm not only a big fan of yours, but also Jennifer DeGuzeman's of Slave Labor Graphics fame. She posted this:

Also, it seems you left Holly out of her birthday post. Did you forget to say something about her?

Really, the best Holly Birthday post was

And it was very nice meeting Jennifer, who came across as utterly self-assured and said lots of sensible things she has undoubtedly forgotten. And besides, it did smell like onion rings.

Hi Neil,

I was reading Amanda (Palmer)'s blog, and she said you were working with her on her solo record, Who Killed Amanda Palmer. I'm a huge fan of Amanda, and your writing, and I was wondering what your involvement was in it.



So far I've written the words that will turn up on the back cover of the CD, Who Killed Amanda Palmer? And I'm going to write the words for a book of photographs of Amanda Palmer having been killed.

Hi, Neil!
A bunch of my geek-girl friends and I have pulled together a calendar celebrating being both female and geeky. You seem like this might be something you'd want to support--if you want to plug it on your blog, we'd be very grateful! The website is


Consider it posted -- mostly because I liked the outside knitting picture.

No question, Neil -- just a link that will point you to what happens when the muses take hold of an English department, and focus their will upon the lowly subject of an errant red hand truck. Enjoy!

Fun! Reminds me of some of the classic Making Light posts.

Bil Stiteler just pointed me at, a blog that collects blog posts from blogs that only have one entry.

Hi Neil!

I am a long time fan of your work, and I know I'm a bit behind, but I just finished reading Anansi Boys. It is an awesome read, and I found myself in awe of the subtlety of your literary skills.

I'm curious about the writing process of the characters in Anansi Boys, you being a Caucasian man and the majority of the characters are not. I am an African American woman, and in the majority of books I've read, you naturally assume the characters are Caucasian, as whenever a non-Caucasian comes into play, it is plainly stated, i.e. "He was a black guy... She was a Japanese woman," etc. I so admire how you wrote Anansi boys, because it was the exact reverse - the reader is to assume that all the characters are black, and the non-black people are pointed out. Even the minority authors I've read make a point of focusing on race, but Anansi Boys was so smooth and subtle, I was halfway through the book before I caught it. I just wanted to say thank you for telling a wonderful story, without getting caught up in the semantics of color. It has to be the first book where the main characters are black people, of different cultures, that is not placed in the "African American
Fiction" section of Borders.

Could you tell a bit about your writing process for Anansi Boys, or if you have already done so on your journal, could you direct me to the post?

Thank you, and many Blessings!


Honestly, I think you've pretty much summed it up as well as I ever could. You can hear me talk about it at or read what I had to say when the book came out at

Hello! I have a question I couldn't find the answer to on your site or hardly anywhere else online. I have completed the third draft of a novel and got a lot of feedback saying it was good. However, I am in need of editing. Do you know how I can find good editors for hire? The reason why I want an editor is because I am concerned about being turned down for needing too much editing. I make some plural, punctuation, and some structural mistakes. I have no idea what the publishing world is like--Will a publisher turn down a manuscript with a good story, good writing, and solid arc if it had too many little errors per page?

I suspect that "too many little errors per page" means that the work is not going to be seen as "good writing". Amazing storytelling will triumph over a lot -- there was one bestselling author who wrote all her manuscripts with the shift key down -- but you need amazing storytelling to get to that point.

And while I don't know a lot about freelance editors, I feel confident in pointing to this Miss Snark post and its links and comments:


I was reminded at Boing Boing, there is no law against taking photos or filming in public places in the US or the UK. Something that law enforcement wannabes really need to remember:

And here is Guillermo Del Toro talking about The Hobbit, Hellboy 2, and Death the High Cost of Living:


And that was as far as I got last night because it was then that I discovered a fully-gorged deer tick on the side of my face, and got to investigate what happens next (your doctor appears and gives you 200mg of doxycycline, which works in 87% of cases to stop Lyme Disease from happening, is what).

And I've forgotten what else was going to be in last night's post, except that I know it was going to finish with a link to this post --
and congratulations to Dave and Lisa.

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