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Monday, October 6, 2008

A Rain of Leaves

A few weeks ago, the ass end of Hurricane Ike swept through Ohio bringing with it 6000 mph winds, knocking down trees, knocking out power and just generally fucking things up. There wasn't any rain or flooding, which is what I (foolish boy that I am) always associated with hurricanes. Just a rain of leaves blowing from trees and covering the roads, choking the gutters. And a haze of grit blown from places that normally don't see a lot of wind. We were without power for 8 days. It was like being involuntarily Amish. I wasn't able to write with the computer so I finished about the last 60 pages of a book called Morning is Dead longhand and spent last week typing that up. Unfortunately, the windstorm also knocked the power out at my work for a week so the following week was kind of like cramming two weeks into one. Joy!

Of course, I'm not complaining. I realize this was nothing compared to an actual hurricane. Complaining about being without power and having to throw some food out is nothing compared to people who lose their houses and entire histories to these kinds of things.

Last weekend, I attended Context 21 in Columbus. Overall, it was pretty blah. I think I'm way too introverted and awkward to have a very good time at these things unless I kind of sort of know a few people who are there. I attended a reading by Brian Keene on Friday night. It was a story called "Johnstown" and it was pretty good. He's an awesome public reader. I also met Tim Waggoner. We practically live in the same town and I blurbed his Squid Salad Press book Skull Cathedral, but we'd never had the chance to meet each other before. D. Harlan Wilson arrived on Saturday so my wife and I spent the better part of Saturday evening hanging out at the bar with him. He's a great guy and a fantastic writer. If you haven't checked out any of his stuff, you definitely should. I'd recommend starting with his latest, Blankety Blank: A Memoir of Vulgaria. It was also great meeting many others for the first time: Alathea, Nick, Douglas, Kyle, Scott, Lon, Michael... I'm sure my mind has gone blank and I'm leaving out a whole lot of people. Sunday we woke up, went to a bookstore and then went back home and napped.

This past week I began editing two novels and a three novella collection, which will hopefully see publication in the next couple of years. I did write a new story called "The Melancholy Room," which will appear in Olympus Found, probably later this month.