This is not a reference to the Dickens book, but to Gulliermo Del Toro’s second home/office. A sanctuary of the strange where he’s collected his books, models, toys, posters and where he’s created an imaginative workshop for himself, and his friends.
I shared the documentary on his bleak house with my lady, as we watched the Criterion Collection edition of Cronos. We watched this in a house, recently cleared of furniture now relegated to the dump. Old book cases which followed me through three houses met their end. A night stand which was mine since high school joined the other household waste.
In its place, I now have a future home for all of my strange things. I have a room waiting for my couches, for my TV, and for nights when I wish to have a fire going while I watch a man recite the Heiki monogatari in Kwaidan to the dead Heiki themselves. My art already hangs in various places about the house. We contemplate new frames for the Russian Inception poster and the Japanese poster for Blade Runner.
I am not participating in NaNoWriMo this time around. My move, and the new chapter I begin this month takes priority. But I have a writing place already set out. My laptop will find a home, as will the small keys of my iPad keyboard. I will get to the end of Ivre this year. I’ve already decided on a course for next year, though. Next year will be a very interesting year, in my not so bleak house…
I have a lot of excellent notes to transcribe from this year’s CapClave. Excellent programming all around – it was not until the “I’m still somewhat hungover” end of Sunday the panels became quiet. Never in all my time at conferences have I seen a panel member jump up and say “No! No! No! and No!” when fish was brought up in a cryptozoology discussion.
Writing-wise, my big take away are two websites: duotrope.com and Querytrack.net – good resources. I added a ton of interesting notes and ideas. And I have many books now signed, including delighting George R. R. Martin by bringing along my BlueJay press edition of Nightfliers.
But the big note for me was this: fandom is still a lot of fun, but just not in the public ‘look – manatees!’ way anymore. Manatee moments are kept quiet. Or monetized.
And the quote of the conference comes from Kathryn Morrow, regarding how to deal with narrow-minded anti-inclusive tendencies: “Keep fighting. Eventually they will all die.”
I’m undergoing a change of life. It’s leading to days of box packing, nights of re-evaluation, and thoughts of “Hmm, do I know anyone who’d really want a copy of this?”
In other words, I’m moving later this year. It’s eaten up a lot of my time and thought-space. Finding hours is a precious thing now. I maybe squeeze in 30 minutes of writing in the morning, before work starts up. I got a chance to have a full hour one evening and it was bliss. I missed having reserved space for just writing.
But, until then, scrape what you can. Write what you can, when you can. Hide words away like microfilm left in dead drops. Keep writing.