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I achieved . . . something

Today I was able at last to see off two of the projects that have been keeping me burning the candles late here at Snarl Towers. In each instance I'd been stuck until people got back from wherever they were to give me an important piece of information or instruction without which I couldn't enter the climactic frenzy of work to get the job done; in the case of one book there were two people I had to hear from.

Yes, walls have been chewed, the names of deities have been taken in vain, and once or twice I've almost been tempted to kick a cat.


[1] Tonight I was able to send off the completely edited and coded file for my bumper (150,000+ words) collection, Warm Words and Otherwise: A Blizzard of Book Reviews, to Keith Brooke at infinity plus ebooks. We're still discussing what to do about the cover but that's a different issue; so far as I'm concerned, at last I've been able to put the book to bed.

[2] I was able to send
back to Danielle Ackley-McPhail of Sidhe na Daire Multimedia the corrected galley of the reissue by Dark Quest Books of my and Dave Langford's disaster-novel parody Earthdoom! The ebook of this is out Real Soon Now, to cash in on the book's status as an exhibit at the current major Science Fiction Exhibition at the British Library; hopefully the print version will follow not too far behind.

As part of this venture I had to produce a piece of artwork! Who knew I was so talented in the fields of calligraphy and, er, verisimilitudinization? Not me, certainly. Here is my humble effort:


I'm donating the original to MoMA. If you don't see it hanging there by the end of the week, write to them and complain. 'Course, I'll have to share the viewing fees with Dave, who was responsible for the original channeling of Junior's words . . . in particular the word "fizickle".

Back in the land before time, or 1986 as we oldsters quaintly call it, the artwork for Junior's essay was done by thalinoviel, who must then have been about nine. This was, you remember, in the days when scanners and JPGs were just futuristic skiffy nonsense. The original of Jane's exquisitely calligraphed artwork vanished into the maw of the publisher's (Grafton Books's) production department, never to be seen again; MoMA's loss, in other words. Alas, the Grafton printing was so duff that we couldn't just scan the page for use in future reissues.

I did try to impress upon thalinoviel that she was probably the youngest ever artist to get a credit line in a Grafton book but she was unimpressed, insisting upon the promised dosh (whole pounds) in place of mere glory.

When BeWrite Books did a short-lived reissue in 2003, they tried to replicate the effect using
a font that was so hilariously wacky that grown men broke down and wept.

This time around, Dave and I had to face the fact that neither of us knew any bribeable kids of appropriate age: thalinoviel's son Thomas is several years too young, thalinoviel herself is just a tad too old (although not in her devoted daddy's eyes, y'know). So it had to be . . .

. . .

. . .

. . . FORGERY, and I was the one wot dunnit, oh yes.

I'm actually pretty pleased with the result, even though the place where Junior stuck his pencil through the paper isn't obvious (it's just before he gets the spelling
of "blue" right).

I'm hoping that tomorrow my copyeditor at Prometheus will get the last bits through of his amendments to Denying Science: An Enormously Long Editor-Imposed Subtitle which the Author Himself Cannot Remember so that I can get three very large undertakings out of the way.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 28th, 2011 08:37 am (UTC)
I don't know much about art but I know what I like, etc etc... and that I like!

Congrats on polishing off two projects.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:51 pm (UTC)

Does that mean I get the commission to do your covers in future?
Jun. 28th, 2011 11:52 am (UTC)
I will be at MoMA sometime next week. I'll make certain to speak to the curators if I don't see it.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:52 pm (UTC)

I'm sure they'll treat you with . . . caution.
Jun. 28th, 2011 11:54 am (UTC)
Shurely, for more verisimilitude, the art should involve an age of '6 3/4'?

One of the longest-lasting professors at my university retired this past spring. As she was named Finkelstein, I suggested in a chairs' meeting that it was a pity that there wasn't a Professor Sampson retiring at the same time. 'Who is Professor Sampson?' asked the dean.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:50 pm (UTC)
Shurely, for more verisimilitude, the art should involve an age of '6 3/4'?

Good point! Too late now, alas . . .

a pity that there wasn't a Professor Sampson retiring at the same time. 'Who is Professor Sampson?' asked the dean.

Sorry - that one's gone right past me, too. Wha'?
Jun. 28th, 2011 02:13 pm (UTC)
Jokes about Sampson and the Finkelsteins do go past people.
Jun. 28th, 2011 03:08 pm (UTC)

That's twice it's gone past me. Even googling hasn't helped . . .
Jun. 28th, 2011 03:47 pm (UTC)
It's a pun on Finkelstein/Philistine.
Jun. 28th, 2011 03:49 pm (UTC)

I vaguely wondered about that, but rejected it as a possibility on the basis of the spelling "Sampson".
Jun. 28th, 2011 05:03 pm (UTC)
Ouch. You can tell I haven't read the Old Testament recently.
Jun. 28th, 2011 05:11 pm (UTC)

You can tell I haven't read the Old Testament recently.

I'm shocked. You'd better be careful of thunderbolts.
Jun. 28th, 2011 05:31 pm (UTC)
I haven't been reading Hesiod or the Eddas either.
Jun. 29th, 2011 01:17 am (UTC)

Would that be Edda Cantor or Dame Edda Everidge?
Jun. 29th, 2011 11:23 am (UTC)
Definitely Dame Edda.
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )

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