Eastercon & Update

I've gotten really bad at posting updates... Too busy, too stressed, too everything. Anyway, here's quick catch up...

I've had a really good Eastercon this year. Partly it was because I now know more people in the community so there's always someone to hang out with. The other part was that somehow this convention seemed smaller than last year, at least in terms of the number of pros present, so it was easier to meet new people. I'm not sure if point two really was true or an illusion due to point one, but either way, it worked out well.

Highlights included:

Codex Writers lunch, finally meeting some UK-based Codexians as well as some visitors. (Why didn't we take any pictures?)

The panel I moderated on The Future of Space Opera with John Scalzi, Aliette de Bodard and Zoe Sumra:

(Here I am, looking all in control, hehe)

And post BSFA awards party, where some of us did our best to embarrass Gareth Powell in every possible way:

(I'm the one on the right)


Checking in...

I've been peeking over here every now and then but not as much as I used to, for various reasons. One of them has been that the beginning of the year has been crazy busy with writing and study. My study is part-time, and so far I've kept it at a conservative pace, but then I figured I could sign up for another course that would run over Feb-September, which'd give me only three months when both courses overlap; something I thought I could manage. Well, the second course has proven much more time consuming than advertised. Also, I'm not making things easier on myself by learning Latex (a program for mathematical typesetting), which is not required at my level but typing math in Word gets on my nerves, and I have to learn sooner or later so it might as well be now.

I've had some decisions to make on the writing front, which also resulted in changes of plans, and more work. But that will have to be another post.

I got to have a break earlier this month when I went on…

Year in Review

Holiday Chaos

So the holiday plans got mightily derailed. We planned to send Christmas and New Year's in Poland with my parents--I'm the only child and don't see them often enough so they were really looking forward to it. I was going to fly on my own, and my husband was going to join later while coming back from his work tour. See, he is a pilot in corporate aviation, and his usual tour is six days flying and five days break. The break is normally at home, but he can ask for a temporary change to his "base," meaning at the end of his tour he'd be delivered to the new "home station," and then start the next tour from there as well. This works perfect when we want to visit my parents because a) we save on tickets, and b) he gets the maximum use of his days off, without wasting more time on travel. This is how we planned it this time. I was going to fly out on the 20th and he'd join on the 23rd. But as the time for my departure was approaching, we realised that t…

Writing Retreat

I’m just back from a great four-day retreat/critique session with a group of European writers. The group has been going for a decade, but for some reason I only found out about them this year, even though I knew some of the members. It started as a meeting place for people writing in English living in non-English-speaking countries in Europe, though by now it has expanded to include some UK-based writers. They meet twice a year for a Thursday-Monday session of critiques, writing, chatting, and general shenanigans.   I missed the first session this year, but the latest one was just impossible to refuse as it was held in the UK, and in a location half an hour drive from my house! We had a beautiful, if somewhat draughty, Tudor building all to ourselves. I had a bedroom with four-poster-bed and murals that dated back to 1610. 

We made our own dinners, with one person cooking and another assisting every evening, and the food was amazing. 

I had a thoroughly good time. The people were all love…

New Fencing Kit

I did it. spent a small fortune and got my kit. Yay!

So of course there were shenanigans, and showing off moves...

 I'm glad to report that the drying rack survived the assault...

The bib of the mask is a bib stiff, but everyone said it will "break." I really hope so, because I know that the size is right and yet it pushes up as if it were too small.

And here's an incorrect sixte:

Now I have to make sure I don't put on any weight... The breeches are tight as they are...

Now at least I look the part in my group. As to the skills... They all have a couple of years on me, so I guess that's a good excuse?