Oct 1
          A bad day as far as my writing career goes. My manuscript to an agent was returned as undeliverable. Apparently the address was wrong. I think I've tracked down a good address, but still, that's a whole month wasted. I also had a rejection from Strange Horizons for a short story I sent them, and even though they've accepted a poem for publication, I haven't heard from them with any of the details. 
          All this great news within ten minutes of waking up this morning. The worst part is my insomnia prevents my from just going back to bed and writing this day off as a loss. I can't even be depressed like normal people.

Oct 2
          I sent the manuscript out in the mail today thanks to the encouragement and help from my friends (Charlie, Kate, Cecilia--you're the best.) Now all I have to do is wait for an eternity before I hear back on it. Everybody keeps telling me I should email the agent and let her know why it's so late in coming, but to me that seems pushy/unprofessional/un-Canadian. Still, I can't help but feel like I've lost the momentum in getting it out immediately after meeting with them at World Con. I really hate the business end of this!

Oct 3
          Never underestimate the power of an unexpected gift. I bought Pen a couple of little Teddy Bears last night (really cute little things, dressed up in Halloween costumes--one as a shark, the other as a lion) and left them for her with the mail. The squeal of delight was priceless, and she was on cloud nine the whole night. And get this, it wasn't even a make-up present or anything? Of course, you can't do that sort of thing all the time or they'll come to expect it--then it loses its value. The trick is striking the proper balance--they're really should be a handbook on this stuff somewhere.
          And in case you haven't noticed, I've added links to some of my friends at the bottom of the page. Buy their books, visit their websites--you won't be sorry. And don't forget to check out Jason's or Keri's website in the Sock Monkey links--and then buy their books too. Heck, why not just send me you're credit card and I'll order them all for you, no muss, no fuss. Oh well, ya can't blame a guy fer try'n.

Oct 4
          Life is so hectic nowadays you have to multi-task everything. Heck, I can't even take a dump without shaving or brushing my teeth at the same time. And maybe that ability to multi-task is the new survival instinct for the species. I figure it's probably one of the reasons I'm so cool in an emergency. I'm not the kind to stain my shorts at the first sign of danger (well, maybe if I had a toothbrush or razor in my hand). After all, it's just one emergency, right?

Oct 6
   This weekend really sucks. I mean, not only do I start back to work at noon today, which means no Thanksgiving for me, but I should be at Context in Columbus with Charlie. He's going to be on panels and everything! Of course, that would have left me sitting by my lonesome out in the audience. I could always heckle him, I suppose. Hmm, maybe he's better off with me working.

10 Oct
          There's a lot happening job-wise lately (I'm in the military, after all) but I'd rather not talk about it. If you want the lowdown on Afghanistan go to CNN. I will say that yes, the Canadians are sending aircraft and support personnel, and no, I'm not going. Not yet, at least.
          And now for something completely different. I took the test at http://www.robohouse.com/myrobot/ to see what robot I am. 

Figures.

11 Oct
          It must be human nature to leave things to the last possible moment. I'm amazed at the number of people who've approached me in the last few days wanting me to teach them martial arts--especially my particularly lethal brand. Even those who've studied for years. Suddenly that sport karate just doesn't cut it any more.
           I have to admit I've noticed the press for time myself. I'd like to finish Darkside 2, get the re-write done for Naejin, and put the finishing touches on my short stories and get everything into circulation, just in case I get shipped overseas for 3-6 months. Hey, I'm human too, you know.

13 Oct
          I want to live beside Ned Flanders. I want to hang out with the Scooby Gang and fight demons and vampires. I want to eat at Arnold's and go dancing at P3. I want to see Dr. Becker when I'm sick and Bobby Donnell if I need a lawyer. I want to be fired by Nigel Wick, hired by Dylan Hunt, and send my kids to Starfleet Academy. But I'll settle for a piece of chocolate cheesecake.

15 Oct
          I got a rejection letter today on Darkside from the agent that I met at Worldcon. Bummer. I got a contract and a check from Strange Horizons today for The Fright Before Christmas. Cool. I guess that only makes me a demi-loser.

16 Oct
          Well, I'm at sick at home today. They shot me up with Yellow Fever, Typhoid, Diphtheria, Hepatitis A and B, and a host of other boosters. What with that and lack of sleep, my White Blood cells surrendered unconditionally. The cowards. I'm thinking of renaming them Yellow-bellied Blood cells.
           I sent another query letter and sample chapters for Darkside off to another agent today. The fever must be making me giddy. 

17 Oct
          I've had this sty that developed on my lower eyelid where the eyelashes are since just before Philcon, and it was really bugging me. So the other night I took a sewing needle to it and bled it. Pen hates it when I do home surgery on myself, but it does look better now.
          I'm off until Monday at noon, Pen's going away this weekend, and the kids aren't home. I should be able to get some crits and writing done--should being the operative word here. You never know, that sewing needle is still around here someplace, and I've been thinking I don't really need that appendix.

18 Oct
          I had to fast last night for my blood test this morning. Why is it that every other night the TV is loaded with commercials about feminine hygiene products, minivans and dot com enterprises, but last night it was all about food? Ads for every fast food franchise in existence bombarded my TV screen and assailed me in Dolby stereo surround sound. Thank god I don't have Smellovision.

19 Oct
          IQ tests are flawed. Do you mean someone's not bright just because they haven't been taught advanced math skills? And there's always a flaw in their logic.  "A tree branch can hold the weight of three people. If John weighs twice as much as Sam, and Sam weighs half as much as Betty, and Betty weighs half as much as John, will the branch support John, Sam and Betty?" 
          Umm...yeah. You just said it could support three people. Unless John's really a Grizzly bear or something, how much he weighs is irrelevant. Of course, by that logic, it could only hold three people even if Sam only weighed as much as Calista Flockhart. And with thinking like that, how is it that I consistently score in the genius range? Told you they were flawed.

21 Oct
          I wrote another thousand words on Darkside 2 yesterday, and plan to write a thousand today. Of course, I also plan to win the lottery, which is a neat trick because there isn't even a draw today. What the heck, I might as well plan on getting published today, too. So what if there's no mail delivery. And I'll do the laundry and the dishes.  Oooh, and a promotion to Warrant--yeah, I'll skip right over Sergeant. And all my hair will grow back. Yeah, right. Like I'd ever do the laundry and the dishes. 

22 Oct
          Work was fun. We went canoeing, and made macaroni art, and then we all sat around the campfire singing koom-by-ya. No, wait. That was summer camp when I was eleven. Work sucked. And worst of all, I just signed my IPS offer yesterday, which means work gets to suck until I'm sixty if I want it too. Why didn't summer camp offer me an IPS contract? I'd have signed that one in a heartbeat--well, except for the macaroni art.

26 Oct
          I'm free, I'm free! Well, at least until Monday at midnight, then it's back to indentured servitude again. Work is crazy, as usual. PDR's are due (personnel evaluations) and the PTB have decided that the guys going to war also require a PER (really hard-to-write personnel evaluations). To make matters worse the other guy on my crew who's usually responsible for writing half of them has breathing problems and is gone to have his nose broken, which means lucky me gets to write all of them. (I offered to break his nose for him, but he said no. Go figure.)
           Anyway, now that I've got a few days off I'm hoping to get some more writing done. I've finished chapter seven and it's onto chapter eight. Now if only I can figure out how to describe getting blown up in a car bomb in the First Person.

27 Oct
          Note to self: If I'm getting off work early, make sure I phone Pen and let her know I'm coming. The other night I walked in the door and almost got crowned by a can of Pillsbury crescent rolls. I can see it now--a sharp crack upside the head, the can splits open and poof! Crescent dough all over my face. I'm only glad it wasn’t a real robber. I'd hate to be the cop writing the police report on that one.