>On my mind to write about: bread and soup and cookies and flashes versus short stories (go read K.K. Rusch’s “The Observer” up at Lightspeed to see an amazing example of how best to use 1500-ish words) and emotion in stories and the short story markets and my thoughts on anthologies and the names that sell them and so much more. But somehow, the last few weeks have flown by despite the grief around Mom’s birthday and the 1-year anniversary of Grandma’s passing the day after. Putting my somewhat fragile-ish thoughts up here seemed ludicrous, not to mention somewhat silly considering the frantic puppy energy at home all the time.

Damn cute, isn’t she? (Although not related to the aforementioned frantic energy.) And Buddy doesn’t mind her anymore, for the most part. She also runs to him when she’s in trouble (which is far more often than it should be, considering the fact that she was supposed to be mostly potty-trained). And, she’s a bit of a bully at the dog park; she wants to be in charge and shows all the other dogs that, even the year-old spotted Great Dane there last week, who was as large as a Shetland pony. I’d like to get her (Nellie, not the GD) to sit still long enough to weigh, so we can see exactly how much she’s grown.

She’s taking refuge with Buddy, here, whose eyes are especially bloodshot in this photo. It’s normal for him, the later the hour grows.

Tonight we’re going to put ribbons on all three of the animals and force them to sit for pictures. Kitty won’t like it a bit. Poor Kitty – I was worried that Buddy might get less attention when Nellie joined us, but I think Kitty has been impacted the most, for the worst.

I finished a new short today – it’s still very raw, and even ugly. The filling hasn’t filled in yet. But it’s exciting nonetheless, and I have decided not to pressure myself with this one. I know what I want it to be, and it may take some time to fill out, and that’s okay. In some cases, forcing oneself through the muck is a good idea, but with this story, that won’t work, and I don’t want to overdo it, or frustrate myself more than necessary.

And a few other subs seem to have made it through the slush readers, which makes me hopeful. Perhaps there will be some good news in the next few weeks, or maybe come January.

In the meantime, I’m sacked with crits to do, and “The Harvester” short (as opposed to the Harvester book, which is about 40k long presently, and on hold) will be an Editor’s Choice on OWW, going up on the 20th. Meaning more feedback, which I have mixed feelings about, considering it’s mostly what I want it to be already, conflicting opinions or not. (Because everyone has either loved it passionately, or had serious problems with it. It seems to be an all or nothing piece.)

And John gave me a splendid slow cooker as an early Christmas present (like Nellie). We had the most AMAZING pork ribs last night. Amazing, amazing. Now I have no more excuses to not go to the gym after work (too tired, too tired to make dinner, blah, blah, blah) – so I did last night, and got my ass handed to me in an iron kickboxing class. But wow, is it good for the frustration/aggression/anything you need to get out. Krista’s been telling me this for months, and I finally got it.