Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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March 15, 2010

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The Calvary

September 17, 2008

I seem to be one of The Few, The Proud, The Brave who had power restored yesterday. It came on about 6pm. It was beautiful.

This morning, I saw three power trucks on the road, and though there were still quite a few street lights out on my route in, and several blocks still without power, there was… progress. Which, you know, really, was all I was hoping for. Some kind of indication that we weren’t stuck in the second half of The Stand.

They’re using the fairgrounds downtown as the staging area for the power and debris trucks, and I passed them on the way in. It was pretty awesome to see 50 second shift trucks and crews get geared up for another day. I very nearly took a picture. It filled me with love!

On the one hand, I don’t want to blame Dayton for being incompetent – most of the crews were in Texas, and it took them that extra day to get up here. But you know, it also doesn’t surprise me that this get noticeably better once you get in the folks from out of state who know what the fuck they’re doing.

It doesn’t help that Dayton Power & Light just goes out of its way to look incompetent:

Other major utilities in the region, including Duke Energy and American Electric Power which serves the Columbus area and southeast Ohio, offer the public specific projections, by telephone or Web site, about when customers in given areas can expect to have their service restored.

DP&L lacks the technology to do that, Tatham said.

Often, residents have been able to determine where power has been restored by “driving around,” Tatham said.

Yeah. It’s an incredibly organized strategy we employ.

Montgomery County Sheriff Phil Plummer said he has been in contact with DP&L about the repair schedule, but needs to know more about when each area is to be reconnected. That would help the sheriff’s office deploy patrol officers accordingly to deter criminals who might try to loot in areas still without electric service, Plummer said Tuesday.

DP&L relies on information that local governments relay about reconnect priorities, Tatham said.

“As far as identifying priorities down to a neighborhood, that would be difficult to do,” Tatham said.

Right. Because… making a priority list in the event of a disaster isn’t something that… people do. Shit, if FEMA doesn’t do it, why should DP&L?


In any case, there are still lots of folks without power this morning, but at least there’s progress.

Then everybody will head back to Texas.

How to Write a Query Letter

September 12, 2008

Finding good examples of query letters and synopses online can be tough, especially when you’re an SF/F writer. I returned again and again to this one by Lynn Flewelling when I started writing mine.

And lo, look, now here’s a whole bunch of them.

For those working on Queries, I also recommend Elizabeth Lyon’s book, The Sell Your Novel Toolkit. It has a ton of great synposes and query samples, and it was just the book I needed to read when I started seriously trying to sell books.

Here’s my contribution to the collective wisdom of the free internets. The Query that got me my agent, who subsequently got me my deal. Personally, I still think it’s a little dense and wordy, but hey, it piqued some interest:

April 23, 2007

Dear Jennifer Jackson,

God’s War is a 90,000 word SF novel of faith, betrayal and submission played out in the contaminated deserts of Nasheen, a matriarchal nation engaged in a centuries-old holy war.

Nyxnissa “Nyx” so Dasheem is a bel dame, one of the brutal women engaged in hunting deserters. After getting caught selling out her womb to gene pirates, she is stripped of her bel dame title and forced to make a tenuous living as a less-than-respectable bounty hunter. Nyx’s luck appears to improve when she’s offered a bounty on an interstellar gene pirate who’s fled – or been kidnapped – from the royal compound. While trying to keep together her ragtag crew of mercenaries, Nyx pursues the elusive alien across Nasheen’s parched interior and over the war-torn border with Chenja.

There, under the dim lights of Chenja’s underground fighting rings, Nyx must face a black market boxer, a traitorous magician, and the betrayal of one of her team members. As her crew begins to unravel, Nyx finds herself hunted by her former bel dame sisters and a notorious war veteran. If Nyx can salvage her crew and outwit her rivals, she could hold the key to ending Nasheen’s centuries-old conflict in her bloody hands.

My educational background is in the political history of southern Africa, with an emphasis on the experiences of female guerilla fighters. I am a Clarion West graduate, and some of my work has appeared in Strange Horizons, Talebones, and the upcoming Year’s Best SF 12.

The partial or full manuscript and synopsis of God’s War are available for review upon your request. I am currently drafting a sequel, Black Desert, and a third and final volume is in outline form.

Thank you for considering this proposal. I have enclosed an SASE, and I look forward to hearing from you.


Kameron Hurley

Welcome Kaylee Rae Clark

September 11, 2008

My neice, Kaylee Rae Clark, was born via planned Cesarean September 9th around 1pm PST.

Kaylee! I want to get her overalls with a teddy bear patch and teach her how to remake a Starship engine. Sadly, my sister doesn’t get that joke… but it amuses the hell out of me.

Mom and baby.

Mom, Dad, and baby!

My mom and Kaylee.

My mom, my nephew Christopher, and Kaylee.

Look Who Has Come to Visit!

July 11, 2008

I am dogsitting the crackhookers this weekend!

Diabetes & Inflammation

January 12, 2008

I remember being stunned and frustrated when I was diagnosed that not even the medical establishment knew what it was that really caused or triggered type 1 diabetes. I was irritated that nobody could tell me why I’d been sick for nearly a year before finally going under, and why I couldn’t get an explanation that made any sense.

Well, you can’t get a good explanation – or a good cure – until people figure out what the hell’s going on. Which they’re still doing.

In a discovery that has stunned even those behind it, scientists at a Toronto hospital say they have proof the body’s nervous system helps trigger diabetes, opening the door to a potential near-cure of the disease that affects millions of Canadians.

Diabetic mice became healthy virtually overnight after researchers injected a substance to counteract the effect of malfunctioning pain neurons in the pancreas…..

Dr. Dosch had concluded in a 1999 paper that there were surprising similarities between diabetes and multiple sclerosis, a central nervous system disease. His interest was also piqued by the presence around the insulin-producing islets of an “enormous” number of nerves, pain neurons primarily used to signal the brain that tissue has been damaged.

Suspecting a link between the nerves and diabetes, he and Dr. Salter used an old experimental trick — injecting capsaicin, the active ingredient in hot chili peppers, to kill the pancreatic sensory nerves in mice that had an equivalent of Type 1 diabetes.

Bacon Love

January 9, 2008

Wrap yourself in bacon!

Because you can.

Get Your Shit Together

January 8, 2008

So I was on the phone with my not-Boyfriend last night, and, to put it bluntly, I kicked his ass. You can only put up with so much emo whining before you just crack.

You know what, everybody?

Life is hard.

Really fucking hard.

Getting what you want out of life?

Even fucking harder.

I have had a shitty couple of years. Let’s be honest. I got a chronic illness that cost me 30K and 4 days in the hospital and takes up a staggering amount of time, money and energy to manage on a daily basis (not to mention self-control, discipline, and plain fucking hard work). I’ve been in four relationships, two of which ended in smoking ruin, been dumped twice (three times, actually, two people). I was laid off from my cushy but (let’s face it) dull Chicago job, blew through my 401(K), fucked up my friendship with my best friend, rang up 17K in credit card debt (16, 17, 18? Really, who can keep track?), and had books rejected by agents and publishers across the board.

And you know what? I could have chosen to deal with any and all of these things: chronic illness, job loss, fucked relationship(s), the usual rejection, with giving up. With hiding under my bed and feeling sorry for myself. I could have denied the whole chronic illness thing and continued to subsist primarily on carbs and sob into my brown sugar oatmeal in the morning and run around wacked-shit crazy because my sugar levels were all over the fucking board, running around with crazy depression and weepiness and tell everybody “poor me! Poor me!”

Fuck that shit.

Why the hell would I choose to hide under my bed and cry all the time? What’s the point in that? What does it accomplish? Lying around feeling sorry for myself doesn’t change the situation.

I hate that I have to work my ass off just to feel “normal” now. I need an hour of exercise a day and a low-carb lifestyle to feel my best. And just to keep that up takes not just willpower, but fucking work. I have to adjust all my insulin levels and correct for lows and test all the time, because sugar’s easier to manage if you have a set routine – sugar’s always easier to manage when I’m sedentary, cause then I’m not having lows all the time and feeling like I want to rip people’s heads off and unable to concentrate at work for 20 minutes while I even out again.


Instead, to be at my best, I have to go through a calibration phase every time I mix up my routine. So for the first week of a new workout routine I’m adjusting my sugar. Oh, sure, it gets easier once you have the new formula down, but the reason I like routine – eating and exercise – is because it’s just so much fucking work to change it up. And I still have to change it up sometimes. And it sucks.

Also, having a fucking budget sucks. It really sucks. It sucks that I have to cut out all the fucking cheap-ass food (because it is, of course, full of carbs) but can’t splurge on expensive cheese – the only stuff I can eat totally guilt free that I adore! – because, again, it’s fucking expensive. it really sucks. It sucks to live on fajitas and spinach salad. It sucks not going out to eat all the time and buying diet cherry coke. I hate it.

But what I hate more than ANYTHING, more than any of this fucking WORK, is being a fucking loser. Is falling down and not getting the fuck up again. Everybody gets to whine and bitch and moan sometimes, you know? But when you’re done bitching, you get the fuck up. You take it a step at a time. You figure out what you want and you start to build it, one block at a time.

You get your health together first, because if you’re mentally wacky, you can’t do shit. And that’s pretty fucking hard, too. Not everybody has health insurance or people in their lives to love and support them through the hard shit. It’s called fucking privilege, to have health insurance and a support network. So if you’ve got it, shut the fuck up and stop bitching and get your fucking shit together.

Get your shit together, not-Boyfriend.

On a jet plane… With a hipster toy

December 21, 2007

I’m writing this post from the Dayton airport on my new iPod touch. Hell no – I didn’t buy it myself.. I can’t even afford to buy beer. Our exec team handed one of these out to all of us at our holiday lunch yesterday. I’ve never gotten a holiday bomis or gift before. It was incredibly generous and surreal. Sure, I could have used $300 more, but I know my company doesn’t have any cash this time of year, either. Let’s be thankful for small miracles, yo.

Also, this screen does get annoying to type on, but yo, I can watch youtube videos,check my email, and blog all directly from the airport wifi without pulling pit my bulky laptop. It’s pretty slick. Anyway, I’m already delayed into Houston, so it’s fixing to be a long night. Nice to have so many different toys available to pass the time.

Wow, I’m really glad this keyboard screen has an automatic spelling correction feature. Oh wow! It moves the cursor wherever I tap my finger in the post – it moved the cursor there! Mmmmm gadgetry.

Ok, I need a drink. Later, peeps.

Better Than an iPhone

August 18, 2007

For me, anyway. And if they can make an iPhone, they can make one of these. It’s not hard, yo.

(thanks, David)