Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Nip/Tuck Finale

It's a rare show that gets away with a line like: "I can't believe I have to say this, but you can't sleep with your sister again."

After five years of attracting all manner of sociopaths and psychopaths, you'd think Sean and Christian would have learned a simple lessoon: Don't taunt the lunatic.

What happens when you do? The lunatic snaps. Simple. Little. Equation.

And is it just me, or should Matt take a vow of celibacy? He sleeps with all the oddballs, from Ava to Nazi-chick to Kimber. Like father, like son, indeed.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

I Confuddled Gaius Baltar

I don't make as big a deal out of attending Farpoint as I do Shore Leave. For one, Farpoint is a smaller con. There is less programming, fewer attendees, and usually ice or snow on the ground. We tried a full weekend, but decided it wasn't worth the money. So now we try and just go up on Saturday (we = me, Melissa aka Serenity, and my sister Dawn). We've been the Three Musketeers of Hunt Valley Cons for about eight years, give or take.

I was almost sad we didn't have Sunday membership. There were a couple of panels I'd have liked to attend (one on Paranormal and Fantasy Romance novels!). And listening to James Callis (Battlestar Galactica) was a hoot. He is a great public speaker, and I'd have loved to hear him again. One hour of that voice just wasn't enough.

He spoke last, after Marina Sirtis. This is my second con in which Marina has appeared (she was at Shore Leave two summers ago), and my third time listening to her. She is brilliant, funny, vulgar, outspoken, and refreshing. She told a particularly funny story about her guest appearance on Stargate SG-1, right around the time Michael Shanks was trying to get off the show (season five?). She, he and Amanda Tapping were filming in an enclosed space (the submarine set) and it was pretty hot. Apparently Michael got angry, pitched a fit, and said, "Who do I have have to f**k to get off this show?" To which Marine promptly replied, "The same person you f**ked to get on it." Said Amanda fell out of her chair.

I love stories like this. It's one of the reasons I love attending cons and listening to actors talk about their jobs. That one so many of them (James Callis, Jamie Bamber) have sexy accents, or are just plain easy on the eyes (Connor Trinneer, James Marsters). I don't mind staring at them for an hour.

And once in a while, as my post title suggests, I have a sincere moment that just makes my day.

We were at the end of the autograph line (high badge numbers), and it was the end of the day, so James was pretty tired by the time we got to his table. He was still (bless him) personalizing the autographs, and asked my name. I said, "Kelly." Cuz that's my name. He starts writing "Kell..." and then stops to look up at my badge (to check for the correct ending). I said "two l's, one y."

He paused, sort of stared at the photo, and then laughed about completely losing track of what he was doing. I laughed, too, because he was so adorable about it. He said it had been a long day and apologized. I agreed and thanked him. So sweet.

The final inscription on the photo is: "Dear Kelly, It's been a long day. Lots of love, James Callis."

*happy sigh*

I also have a photo of the three of us with Marina Sirtis. She ran down the line to take photos with anyone who wanted them, so she didn't have to keep getting up and down at the table. It was really generous of her to stand for those photos anyway, since the con usually frowns on it (holds up the line).

I'd upload photos, but I'm one of those folks still in love with her film camera. So I need to get them developed first, and then scanned in. All in all, it was a good day.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

February Blog Chain: Balance

Yes, I'm back on the AW Blog Chain Wagon. February's theme is Balance, and today I have the daunting task of following an amazing post from Ava Jarvis at Spontaneous Derivation. I kid you not. If you aren't following the chain and just happened upon this post, go read it.

Right now.

*taps foot*

Done? Yes? Good.

So balance. My handy-dandy Webster's Dictionary and Thesauras (Basic English Words for Daily Use) only gives two definitions. One: device for determining the weight of something. Duh, and not quite what I'm going for here. Two: agreement of totals in the debt and credit of an account. Close, but not quite. It's interesting that the only two definitions are both related to numbers.

The thesaurus half provides more useful synonyms: poise, stability, composure, equilibrium, equalize.

I'll add harmony to the list.

In her blog chain post, Ava mentioned being a Leo and some traits that go along with it. I don't read my horoscope or really know what it means to be a Cancer, so I checked it out. In particular, this line stood out for me: "When your level of security is undermined, particularly by domestic disturbances, you can lose your equilibrium, becoming irritable, hypersensitive, snappy, unforgiving, self-pitying and brooding."

Holy beans, that describes me so well. Especially over the last couple of months. I've been riding the ups and downs of the Query Train, attempting to land a literary agent. Family problems (snooze, snore, we all have them, I know) keep cropping up and sapping my energy. And let's not even talk about The Job From Hell right now, in which I can't seem to find any sort of firm footing.

So where am I? Emotionally exhausted, crabby all the time (no astrology-pun intended), snappy at my roommate and employees, avoiding phone calls to my parents, very down on my writing ability, and in moderate amounts of physical pain (did I mention my job is also physically strenuous?).

I've fallen so far away from my center I don't quite know how to find it again. How to strike the balance in my life that was there just three months ago. Unless it was never there to begin with, and I just never realized how far off-center I'd become. I don't know. Maybe I'll never know.

But my horoscope says that change is coming (of course, they all say that, because change is quite inevitable). It's nice, though, to believe in a positive change on the horizon. Something to nudge me back toward the center of things. Something to weigh down the opposite side of the scale and give me back my balance.

Next up is The Writer's Round-About.

The Unfocused Life
Auria Cortes
Spontaneous Derivation
Organized Chaos
The Writer's Round-About
Even in a Little Thing
Spittin' (out words) Like a Llama
A Thoughtful Life
Life in Scribbletown
My Path to Publication
For the First Time
Green Diva
Polenth's Quill

Monday, February 11, 2008

God Speed, Captain

For me, he'll always be Captain Nathan Bridger.

I was fourteen when seaQuest, DSV debuted, and I admit the real draw was (the late) Jonathan Brandis. After enjoying films like Ladybugs and Sidekicks, I determined he was the most adorable thing under the sun. It also helped that Don Franklin (of The Young Riders fame) was one of his co-stars. I only knew the actor playing the captain as "that guy from Jaws."

But Roy Scheider was, and will always be, the heart of that series. Even though he left after season two (good move, in my opinion, as the abbreviated season three was a huge blunder), his absence was felt. It was an ensemble, but the series was about Bridger and the ship he helped build. I bought the first season on DVD a few months back, and it's been great fun to relive those old adventures. I'll be adding season two to my collection very soon.

No matter the role, Mr. Scheider had a humanity that he instilled in his characters. His guest arc on Third Watch, as a homicidal Russian mafia honcho, blew me away. His small part in The Punisher had an intensity of love that made Frank's desire for vengeance that much more realistic. His quiet heroism in Jaws is something I'll never forget.

R.I.P., Roy Scheider. 1932-2008.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

On Demand or Out of Service?

I refuse the feel guilty about spending the entire day in sweats, alternating between the TV and the computer, doing a whole lot of nothing. It's the first whole day I've had to myself in weeks. I watched an Alien Nation movie, an episode of Nash Bridges, a behind-the-scenes featurette for Wild Hogs, and part of a movie on OnDemand called Reeker. Was Reeker any good? The bits I saw weren't bad, but what exactly is the point of OnDemand if the system goes down forty minutes into a movie?

Further proof that Comcast sucks wild turkey toes? I thought so...

Anyway, I finally vegged enough to sit down and get some writing done. I'm closing in on 15k words on the WIP. I'm back in Micah's POV, and the story just took a turn that I wasn't expecting quite so soon. I just love it when the story surprises me. I've become confident enough in my writing to go with those flows, and they always work out well.

I also started a pretty interesting discussion on the AbsoluteWrite forums, stemming from some comments made in Share Your Work (yes, I showed my work, I'm so proud of myself). It's been great fun to follow, and it's helping me understand a few things about that particular book (Dark City, aka Marionette).

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

77 Hours

Seventy-seven hours don't explain why I've been MIA since August. I can't even explain that one; maybe I just thought I'd posted here a few times in the interim. Wow.

*dusts the place off*

No, seventy-seven hours are how many I've worked in the last nine straight days. Way back in December, I was "temporarily" promoted to Interim Store Manager. My manager was promoted to a new store, so three weeks before Christmas, I'm in the hot seat. Two months later, I'm still there. I'm exhausted. My legs ache, my arms ache, even my fingers ache.

But I still manage to write a few words, in between ten hour shifts. Writing a novella set in the Watchman-Universe helped keep me sane over Christmas. I wrote it with the intention of submitting to an anthology, but missed the deadline. Oh well. It'll keep, and it was fun to write.

The WIP is tentatively titled "Alchemy 101." It will make sense one day, I swear. I love the concept, and adore one of my protags (I love his brother, too, but there's something about Micah...). One knows when people are about to die; the other is taunted by the ghost of his dead cousin. What the frell does alchemy have to do with it all? Therein lies the mystery....