Evening (/morning/afternoon/6:02 p.m. GMT), ladies and gentletoads!
A rare update from the whirlwind my life has become. All willingly and eager, fear not – but I can see Exhaustion from here, and she’s waving. So I’m trying to take care of myself, trying to walk slower while doing more faster. Two deadlines this weekend and a reading/signing on Saturday night, which is technically the reason I’ve called this board meeting, but it feels impolite to shill you without foreplay, so…
Répétez. Begin at the beginning.
As you may have noticed, the blog’s kinda taken a back seat at the mo’ – fabulous things are afoot, but there’s only so much writing you can do in a day without your brain dripping out your nose in grey splats. Things should calm down soon, though, and I plan to come back here and regale you with all my wacky adventures in… yeah okay I’m totally making this up. (The wackiest thing I’ve been doing lately is listening to Sia’s new album on repeat. Wild times.) At the very least, I’ll try to make future posts unsucky and not-boring. That is my A-1 Quality Writing Promise™ to you.
The great news is, I’ve started working with some sharp-ass producing partners who came to me with a very unusual idea – and now I’m getting to collaborate and elaborate on that idea in every direction. There’s no graphic novel or video game to adapt this time, just a premise, so I’m getting free rein to craft conflicted characters and indulge in world-building (oh hi favorite things ever) in a very specific – but still classified – “mode” that is challenging me like no other project I’ve done. So naturally I’ve fallen in love with the damn thing.
More as it progresses. ‘Til then keep it under your hats, palookas. That’s why I posted it on the internet. It’s private-like.
Elsewise, in an effort to maintain my energy and sanity, I’ve been working out at the gym like a motherfucker. Getting up at 5 a.m. five days a week: cardio, weights, kickboxing, yoga. Basically I’m living on endorphins and espresso at this point – not an uncommon state for a writer – in addition to enough ibuprofen to do laps in. Anybody reading this in their 20s best be enjoying your youthful resilience or I swear to Christmas I will beat that shit out of you. For me, now, almost every day some body part or other starts whining: ooh, my shoulder, ooh, my calves, my back, my ass, my toes. Places that never used to hurt after I exercised, but surprise! you wake up and you’re a few months from 40 and you didn’t even think that thing back there was a muscle, much less that you could tweak it by sneezing on the elliptical machine.
It’s times like this – the morning times, when my feet hit the floor, the joints in my body cracking loud and continuously like microwave popcorn – I remember a TV clip I saw years and years ago, a sports reporter interviewing a decathlete, a guy who’d chosen to keep competing despite a strained hamstring.
The – clearly dim – reporter asked later, “But weren’t you in pain?”
The decathlete answered, “Well, we do ten sports. There’s always something’s gonna hurt. Soon as you accept that, you stop worrying about it.”
There’s always something’s gonna hurt.
Well I’ll swan, from the mouths of jocks…
Meanwhile, between the soreness itself and the magma-hot Indonesian muscle rub I use to combat it, the searing pain reminds me I’m alive.
And holy shitsnacks am I really, really alive lately.
So alive, in fact, I’m doing something I never thought I’d do: standing up in a room full of people and reading my writing aloud.
(I’m ruining that slick segue to say, “Did you catch that slick segue?”)
MONSTER TRUCK VOICE:
Under the aegis of Shades & Shadows, a dark fantasy, horror, and science fiction performance series, I’ll be reading an excerpt from my book…
…at the California Institute of Abnormal Arts (honestly, who didn’t see that one coming?) (okay, maybe the reporter), located in North Hollywood:
I, for one, feel very reassured to see John’s Lawn Mower & Saw right across the street. If ever a company name cried out for dark fantasy, “John’s Lawn Mower & Saw” ranks right up there for ominous titles. These Shades & Shadows folks know what they’re doing.
More specific details:
I’m not sure why I’m billed last, but I’m pretty confident it’s a badge of honor. Either that, or someone paid them to put me on at the very end so I’d have the whole show to work up enough anxiety vomit to spew over the entire first row. And now that I think about it, that sounds way more plausible than the first explanation.
Here’s the deal: I have seven minutes to read, and a couple ideas for passages to use – but I know these stories so well, it’s hard to take a step back and decide which section might be best for people who aren’t familiar with my work. So in the Comments section below, or if you’d like to contact me through Twitter (@EvilGalProds), I would LOVE to hear suggestions from anyone and everyone who’s read Cowface And Other Hilarious Stories About Death. Maybe a favorite scene, favorite character, favorite moment – fact is, I’m begging for help in not putting a bunch of people to sleep with my yappity-yap. It’s either this, or show my boobs onstage, and frankly I think the boobs thing will only hold them for 30 seconds – which still leaves me six and a half minutes to fill. Nobody wants to see what comes after that.
I pre-appreciate and thank you for your advice, and I hope to see you Saturday*!
P.S. Cowface will be available for sale at the show (with free Evil Gal bookmarks inside!), and I’d be thrilled to sign anything you bring. Even body parts. Even severed body parts, because in California that’s only, what? A misdemeanor, tops? I WILL DO THAT SHIT FOR YOU, FRIEND.
* Those seated in the first row may want to bring plastic sheeting. There’s a possibility it could get very Millie Brown Does Gallagher.