I turned to my wife this morning as we were walking across the parking lot at church.
"Uhh, we didn't go to church last Sunday, right?"
"No, you were at FenCon in Dallas, remember?"
"Fencon was LAST weekend? It seems like forever!"
Yep, it's been that kind of week. The reporter who broke her arm did so the Thursday before FenCon. I assumed once that happened FenCon was toast - but the other reporter who had been on vacation indicated she actually WANTED to cover an event on Saturday that I assumed I'd have to cover, so I was able to attend Saturday and Sunday.
The reporter who is on medical leave had already done some work for last weekend's paper, but this week I had to come up with stuff to take up her slack from scratch, and that's when it got real hard.
Plus, as I indicated, we had a problem develop with the fence Thursday which I couldn't fix until the weekend.
I cover football Friday nights and have to write up the game right afterwards - which means I'm up until 3 a.m. every Saturday morning.
Of course, some idiot usually calls or phones like at 8 or 9 on Saturday morning, so I never get a chance to sleep in. However, yesterday, we didn't get bothered until 10:15 a.m. when a neighbor knocked on the door. That's so close to a normal night's sleep I was actually quite happy.
That afternoon I borrowed a sledge hammer and narrow spade from the neighbor and Patricia and I actually got the t-posts set to fix the fence. We reattached the chain link fence to the posts where it had popped loose, and attached it to the t-posts, which were set in the middle of the other posts.
In case I didn't mention why the fence had to be fixed, our neighbor had kept some sheep in the adjacent pasture and over time the ram had butted the fence so often (when he got pissed at the dogs - both my pup and the dogs that belonged to the people who lived here before) that the fence was badly bowed inwards towards our yard, so much so that the bottom was off the ground - hence my dog being able to slip out.
It was hot work, but we had it done by about 3:30 p.m. I finally was able to let the mutt out of his kennel. The look of consternation when he went back to the fence was worth it all. Hahaha!
After resting, we rewarded ourselves by hitting the Target in Texarkana, and then we pigged out at the Cici's pizza there. Ah, bliss.
Since I've gotten more sleep, I'm doing better in fighting this summer cold. I think it's obvious from the number of spelling mistakes in my last post how tired I was.
My next chore is to go over the stories that came back this week and send them off to different venues again.
More about FenCon? Hmm, it was really kind of like a job for me. Although my learning curve on this science fiction racket has leveled off some somewhat, it's still good to learn stuff from people who get around more. I don't anticipate going to any con before ConDFW in February. With my work schedule (the paper I edit is a semi-weekly, which means it had a mid-week and weekend edition - ergo, I have a 2 p.m. deadline on Friday, which makes it hard for me to sneak out for a long weekend. ) Also, until the end of the fall I MUST cover football - Friday Night Lights in Texas, you know. Back in 2003 I was able to attend Philcon, but that was because it was in December, after the football season is over and before district starts for basketball.
I'd love to go to PhilCon again, but the budget and cost of fuel probably has scotched that. However, I think just in principle I probably need to get out to the East Coast every once and a while - just to rub elbows with the publishing people.
I was glad to hear a couple of time at panels at FenCon that I'm not the only person to have noticed how dominated the magazines and publishers are by New York City. It's really obvious, if you live out where like I do, that there's a cultural thing here, and folks on the East Coast are not as sensitive and sympathetic to us writers in the vast hinter-heartland.
Steve Stirling's GOH talk Saturday night was a hoot, and I told him so in person Sunday morning. I'm reminded how inbred s-fi circles tend to be (like, refer to previous paragraph) because I got the same double-take from him as I've gotten from some other writers when I mention I've been published in Asimov's. I mean, he didn't say anything, but it was obvious he was thinking "Huh? I've never heard of you?"
I got sort of the same thing from Larry Niven, who was the GOH at last year's FenCon, when I told him I had a story accepted for Asimov's. His comeback was, "Well, I bet you hope that isn;t the only story you sell!"
I had just sold "Dybbuk" to Andromeda, which I proceeded to tell some, but some fan butted in and I don't think he ever heard my reply. Oh, well.
Mike Resnik was also a guest at FenCon this year, and I didn't attend any panels he was on and I never met him. But when I go to a Con I go to lean. not to kiss up to authors.
I'm such a newbie in the s-f field I don't know many people well enough to socialize with. Howard's probably my best bud and he lives in Austin. But Howard's just an overall decent human being.