The Writer Definitely Is In A State


Recently, while talking to Cedar Sanderson, she told me she loves my state of the state writer.  What can I say? Some people have weird and perverse tastes.

But I’m using that as an excuse, because I don’t feel like thinking of some deep theme, or even some light theme to write about.

Also, for those of you who follow me at instapundit, the last two weeks with — I THINK — all of two nights of posts need some explanation.

So, what happened was this, mid-January, the week before Cosine, I started getting a sore throat.  Since my preferred mode is recluse, we all assumed it was either psychosomatic, or my auto-immune acting up out of stress, which is another way of saying psychosomatic.

When it whomped me fully the day after the convention I thought “tiredness.” and because I’m very stubborn, it took me a few days to go to the doctor.  By then I’d been sick three weeks, give or take, and was starting to think it had to be something more than a cold which usually takes me about a week to get over.

Well… no. Apparently it’s a cold, or at least “what’s going around.” It’s entirely possible it’s a chain of illnesses, starting with a virus that then leaves you weak enough for the next assault, rinse and repeat.

I know that whatever I have now is at least partly bacteria, because the anti-biotic is working, but it’s working very slowly.  In fact, the doctor called to say if I still felt ill at the end of the course, call them again, and they’ll re-prescribe, which I think is doctorese for “this is happening with a lot of people.”

I have no actual clue what this is, except that it’s bug from heck.  I wasn’t coughing, but that’s probably just my body being an idiot, because I had tons of post-nasal drip, but I was having ear, nose and throat pains, and was vaguely nauseous and achy and just generally exhausted. No, really exhausted.  As in work for an hour, need a nap.  I was also forgetting everything, like emails, phone calls and such. Which is a problem as I’m point woman for part of the wedding stuff.

It was one of those: stare at email, go “oh, I really don’t have the strength to even open that” go back to bed.  For someone as neurotic as myself, who usually can’t sleep if I didn’t close off “business” for the day, this was a bizarre experience.

I might end up ten pounds heavier too, as I just couldn’t bring myself to exercise.  Heck, walking to the kitchen counted as a little jog.  And yes, my body DOES manage to gain weight while sick.  And here I was so proud of not gaining any weight through the holidays.  Oh well.

On the writing front: I finally delivered the ridiculously overdue short story.  Short is a misnomer in this case as it turned out 10k words.  It will probably be 15 or 20k when it comes out indie, too, as I cut corners to fit it in 10k words.  It’s one of a series of sf mysteries, but will probably come out as the sixth seventh, or if I get extra productive 9th.  Shortish … heck I don’t what to call them, in the 15k to 30k range.

If I can get semi-caught up, they’ll be my “weekend fun writing” at least for a day a week. Mostly because they’re pushing really hard and 30k is eminently doable in two days, so maybe a couple of weekends, a day each.

I’m now late on two novels according to my plans, but this thing really whomped me more flat than anything in a long time.  I feel like I slept a whole month.  Unfortunately I didn’t.  It was the FIRST time I got a prescription (discharge orders) for “sleep as much as possible’ so likely I should have, but I was trying to finish stuff.

It would probably have been easier if during this time Dan hadn’t been running benchmarks on my render computer, trying to figure out eventual upgrade/replacement.  This meant when I fought free of the haze enough, I’d go look at what I’d left rendering and it was taking six hours. Or was something completely different.  And then I’d give up and go sleep because braining was so hard.

Anyway, feeling way better, if not 100%. Yesterday I cleaned house and finished short story, and I’m still upright and conscious today — yay — so I’m going to at least catch up on some writing.

The flooring of the dining room (a fine movie to watch from a distance, not so much to act in) might have to wait till tomorrow.

If you pinged me/contacted me/told me something in the last three weeks, be aware that even if I answered you, I likely have NOT THE FAINTEST memory of it.

And now I go. There’s work to do.

73 thoughts on “The Writer Definitely Is In A State

    1. At times I miss living in a city. Crud like this means this isn’t one of them.

      Winter storm warning today. I don’t think it’s safe to plow until the snow stops and visibility gets better, so tomorrow is gonna be busy. Whee!

  1. Shenanigans await! Be safe and well while doing them.

    I should probably get to bed. It”s 2 AM here and I was actually done with my homework at 10, for a wonder.

  2. “What’s going around”? I had that once! Terrible, it was. I like to never recovered. I understand that, unlike most illnesses, you never develop an immunity, so take care, eat well and get plenty of rest. Avoid evil companions and, under NO circumstances should you open that box (you know which one!)

    Also, avoid strenuous quests. No trips to Mount Doom for you, young lady!!! That ring will just have to wait! Have you considered alternative methods of delivery — perhaps an eagle could drop it off for you?

        1. Eagles were practicing foul weather flying last week. OR ANG FTW! (The balds are hunkering down in the pines. Nasty weather today.)

          1. Saw a big bird yesterday, while driving to Green Bay, just before the Abrams US-141/41 change to I41.
            Thought “Now that’s a big crane a bit late for migration (Sandhills came through or left around October). . .wait, no long neck . . . That is the biggest Bald Eagle I have ever seen!” and it was further away than first look implied. Likely twice the size of the local ones here. I’m not sure if ours stay all year, or if it is some northern ones wintering here while ours fly further south. Baldies can do both here-bouts.

            1. We’re both Bald and Golden habitat, while the F-15Cs belong to the 173rd fighter wing (AFAIK, one of the few F-15C training facilities around–they were considering the base for F-22 training until the program got scaled back.) We’re on their route for some of the training flights.

              $SPOUSE has seen mid-air refueling on the -Cs. We’ll see balds heading to trees in the area, and have been chewed out by one when we got too close. Not sure where the goldens live, but we’ve disturbed a couple who were eating dinner just off the road in the Forest land nearby.

              1. Seen balds within feet over the house when I was roofing. Also seen one chased by a Canada Goose (We’ve two flocks of those that stay year-round, though they become one bigger one in this cold), but never been yelled at by one. Red Tail Hawks, on the other hand, have given me what for several times.
                I’ve seen refueling up here (When K.I. Sawyer was active) and in Louisiana.
                In Texas, my workplace was near the test flight route for the V-22 Osprey.
                Nere here, we have a nest used by actual ospreys. Down between Peshtigo and Oconto, near the bay.

                1. The red tailed hawks do their best to keep the ground squirrel population down, but some years the squeakers get out of control. I have to use traps to keep them from eating our zucchini crop.

                  Seen in the meadow: a ground squirrel hole completely surrounded by hawk droppings. The birds were waiting for their dinner dates, I suppose.

    1. I read an analysis that argued that Gandalf and the eagles really did plan to have the Ring travel by eagle, but they concluded that the risk was too great all the way from Rivendell. Gandalf would get them over the mountains by foot, and link up with the eagles.

      Mice, men, plans. . .

      (The analysis then concluded that he tried at the last moment to hint at them in a way that would not tell the orcs the plan — “Fly you fools” but that was the weakest part.)

      1. There is a reply video that deals with the theory, and how difficult it would be for the Eagles to do this stuff for anything but a short journey. (And they are kinda busy.) A Tolkien letter is quoted on why it would not have worked.

  3. Okay well, Dan should get back to me on how the benchmarks went. Yeah, that’s totally my fault.

  4. I stupidly looked at political twitter again, and I’m in a snit.

    One of the moderate sorts was not shouting down the Green New Deal as mostly a physical impossibility that can only be realized through starvation and mass death.

    The first step of implementing such should be the murder of the people who thought it would be a good idea.

    It makes murdering all the illegals look desirable and humane in comparison.

    I have trouble realizing why this isn’t obvious to more of the soft right.

    If only I had that Kuroko headdesk gif handy.

      1. Alt-Right Federal-Aid Highway Act

        (My apologies to the Alt-Right, I had to take great liberties impugning your sanity and the soundness of alt-

        right and conservative policies in order to capture parallels with the Green New Deal.)

        Send flamethrower teams to deal with illegals at the border in order to develop new missile defense


        Cutting off all noses to spite faces, and own the libs.

        Zero taxes, to buy off the establishment RINOs, and obtain their full, complete, and enthusiastic support.

        Complete extermination of non-Jews in Middle East North Africa, because the Israelis are too pussy to do what

        they ought.

        Henceforth, only land currently (2/10/19) planted with winter wheat will be cultivated. All other farms to be

        burned, complete with farmers. We will only grow winter wheat. This is the best most efficient way to solve

        world hunger.

        Eliminating all entitlement spending to cure cancer.

        Mass murder of all homeless, criminals and immigrants to be rolled out with Blokhin Style ‘Gangnam Style’ parody

        music video.

        Original Nancy Drew to be replaced by horrific bowdlerized version, to stop the madness of third wave

        intersectional feminism.

        Elimination of public schooling and organized mass schooling, in order to wipe out child molestation during our


        You didn’t see anything stupid here. You are stupid. If you can prove it is stupid, it wasn’t written here,

        you forger. Liar, liar, pants on fire. I’m rubber, you’re glue, anything you say bounces off me and sticks to you. Poopy head.

        1. Argh.

          Can I get this deleted? Or at least edited down to the heading, so that I can repost without the excess carriage returns?

    1. March 9, 2022

      For immediate release:
      NeoAmerican Foods Announces Addition to Lineup

      With the advent of the Green New Deal, Americans have undergone sweeping changes to their diets. The removal of unnecessary and unhealthy meat-based proteins have opened up exciting new avenues in food choices.

      NeoAmerican Foods, through their SoyLent division is proud to offer its latest development. In the tradition of Formula Yellow, made from soy, and Formula Brown, made from lentils, comes Formula Green, made from… er… PLANKTON! Yeah, that’s it, SoyLent Green is made out of plankton.*

      Currently in limited distribution, we are sure that Formula Green will quickly become a staple source for protein in every citizen’s pantry, with many flavorful recipes coming to the dinner table.

      SoyLent Green: Tastes just like grandma

      used to make!

      *SoyLent Green may contain protein sources other than plankton.

    2. Friday, a twitetr aquaintence who tends to refuse politics made a mistake of posting some yob’s vid cut of AOC “destroying money in politics”
      I told her AOC is dumb as a rock, and is backed by certain billionaires, which sorta voids her vacuous statement.
      She replied that she isn’t familiar with our politics, but likes AOC on a personal level.
      I asked why? she only has her looks going for her and lies, falsehoods, and impossible claims otherwise.
      She didn’t want to elaborate and I didn’t press her.

      1. AOC undeniably has charisma — nothing else can explain her hold on people’s imaginations (and they imagine she makes sense!) We on the Right tend to be deaf, dumb and blind to Liberal charisma, se we stand about puzzling over the attraction of AOC, Barack Obama and William Jefferson Clinton. We are not immune, it is just we are susceptible to a different type of attraction, which is why Reagan is revered on the Right and despised on the left.

        AOC grasps the minds of some folk the same way a snake grabs aholt the mind of a bird.

        1. AOC does have that exuberance. I think when she talks she tends to ramble enough that it’s hard to really parse out WTF she’s saying, so the people remember the exuberance and charisma rather than what she really said. Even if what she said was something like “The government will control everything, even the amount you are allowed to poop in a day”

  5. Psssst: Our Host’s last paragraph means that she probably doesn’t remember that we installed the teleport gate in the minion pool so the sea monster could play with Nessie. The damage is mostly repaired, but people should be careful to not lean on the north wall until the canvas painting is replaced by real brick.

  6. So do I have to be the one to mention that Elizabeth Warren has now officially announced she is in the running for the Democratic nomination for President for 2020?

    I caught a bit of her speech as I set up to watch a DVD. Socialism is at the core front and center of what she was blathering on about. She didn’t really come out and outright say it.

    1. HT to the guys at Power Line for promoting this tidy summary of the Democrat Party’s coming year:

      The peregrinations of their broken-down clown car of a party during the 2020 presidential campaign threaten to provoke a severe popcorn shortage, so stock up now!

      Socialism is the Emperor’s New Clothes of the Left, and promises to be as revealing as the original garb.

      1. I wonder if these are all stalking horses. They propose wild radical ideas that are so blatantly socialist and lousy that people recoil. Then a “moderate” Democrat runs on a platform that is only mildly socialist (at least on the surface) and the D voters and some never-Trump voters race to support him/her/it/whatever.

        1. You know TXRed I’m just not sure. Maybe they’re trying to make the path right for wierd Uncle Joe Biden. And then the little guy with a red suit and a barbed tail sitting on my left shoulder says: ” Are you fricking kidding me buddy? These people couldn’t arrange a cluster **** in a cheap whorehouse. They had the presidency and veto proof margins in both houses and couldn’t agree long enough get a bill they’ve been wanting since the 70’s through. No way in where I come from are they that organized”. The little dude is a pain in the neck (literally sometimes with the darn pitchfork) but he has a point…

          1. Yeah, I think they are crazy.

            I think Warren seriously thinks thinks she will succeed. I think the cover for the Green Deal is because Trump unhinged the media, and they are desperate to recover the Obama magic. But the media doesn’t understand enough about what happened with Obama to understand what worked and what didn’t, and how that led to Trump. Warren doesn’t understand that nationally she is politically a dead woman walking.

            I’ve speculated that something may exist orthogonal to intelligence, with opposite distribution with regard to sex. I’m not sure judgement about how one looks to others in a male competitive environment fits that criteria, but it seems to me that there are some senior female politicians who are very bad at it. If there are a lot of women who can’t judge male style dominance contests well enough to know when they’ve lost and need to cut their losses, then we would expect fewer of them to be successful in senior leadership positions.

        2. I saw a thing years ago talking about how the SNL writers got a controversial skit approved by having their costume designers build a used tampon costume, and pitching a skit involving that costume at the same time. By comparison, the controversial skit they really wanted to do seemed tame, so they got their approval.

    2. After spending months and months denying that she was running? And that after years of denying that she ever claimed that she was American Indian to get employment preferences? Evidently, Liawatha doesn’t think evidence that her nicknames are well-deserved disqualifies her for the Presidency. I do.

      1. I have seen more than one person ranting about Trump’s lies as if no politician ever lied. Down to and including someone saying that if you cared about the truth, you would vote only for Democrats. They think she can get away with it.

  7. Apparently it’s a cold, or at least “what’s going around.” It’s entirely possible it’s a chain of illnesses, …  
    which I think is doctorese for “this is happening with a lot of people.”

    I do not recall hearing about so many people to be struggling with crud they just can’t quite shake as I have since last fall.  A few people I know ended up pushing themselves and ended up developing chronic bronchitis to top it all off.  Not fun.

    To Our Esteemed Hostess: Please take care of yourself. We love you and selfishly want a whole lot more of your writing – in the long run- so, therefore, we don’t want you to push yourself so hard you permanently brake yourself rendering yourself incapable of writing any more. (Oh what a horrible idea…)

  8. BTW — a suggestion for Amanda’s next guest post: The Democrat Party’s Envirovaporware Green Dream.

    Although she might be hard put to offer a better defenestration of these deranged ideas than the editors of the NY Post offered up this morning.

    The truth about the ‘Green New Deal’
    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi got it about right this week when she off-handedly spoke of the “green dream” to refer to the hopelessly overhyped Green New Deal.

    The non-binding resolution from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey isn’t a plan but a fantasy — a wish list not just for environmentalists, but for every faction of the modern left.

    Far too many on the right rush to call AOC dumb or ignorant, but this bill actually shows that she (like Markey and their allies) is fundamentally dishonest.


    Some on the left see the Green New Deal as setting the agenda for the Democratic Party and its 2020 contenders. Wrong: Setting an agenda means making choices and choosing priorities. Simply assuming, as AOC’s website puts it, that your scheme “creates unprecedented levels of prosperity and wealth” is barely even deceptive advertising.

    1. At this point we need to decide when to contain the damage before it gets much worst. I don’t think I can finish and stock my underground bunker before things get too “interesting”. Current reality has stupider plot than most Z-grade Sci-Fi…

    2. Since I was raised a conservative, and my political education was at the hands of those who never liked FDR’s New Deal in the first place, the name already has an evil sound. But, rather than embarrass myself by showing off my ignorance, I took a look at the Green New Deal. Nope, Nope, Nope, and especially Nope. Fence rails, horsewhips, tar, and feathers are so very 18th century, but not entirely inappropriate for the authors and proponents. This deserves a fuller and more righteous fisking than I can give in a comment. I’m almost volunteering to do it and offer it up as a guest post. It also deserves a suitable alternate appellation: Green New Steal is the best I can come up with.

      I almost didn’t get past the “1 Economic Bill of rights” proposal 1. Right to Employment through a Full Employment Program. basically, if no one else will hire you, the government will. Sound good? Well it does if you like the idea of being taxed to provide make-work jobs for those unable or unwilling to find other employment. It won’t eliminate unemployment, because the unemployed already typically include a large contingent of those who are unwilling or unable to work. (at least, at the wages or under the conditions that employers are offering…even if the employer-of-last-resort is Uncle Sam.) Speaking from long-term and intimate familiarity with the market for the barely-if-at-all employable, I am convinced if you can’t somehow establish that you have the skills that employers are demanding, the job market for you is always going to have a stench.
      But wait, there’s more. Although not in this comment.

      1. …if no one else will hire you, the government will.

        I caught a news clip of Nancy Pelosi yesterday rattling on and somewhere in the stream of words I thought I heard her talking about even providing for people who didn’t want to work. Dumbfounding.

        I remember that back in the 1990s when it was proposed that those able bodied people who were collecting welfare might be expected to do a bit of work in return for the stipend they received.   Then the left started screaming about that forcing people to work being tantamount to slave labor.

        Meanwhile I am sure that those unions representing government workers won’t mind the increase in their membership. (Sure, you don’t have to join the union, but …) 

      2. On further consideration:

        1 Economic Bill of rights” proposal 1. Right to Employment through a Full Employment Program.

        Of course…

        When the government becomes your sole provider you will be assigned tasks appropriate for you so that you can contribute to the good of the whole.

        Along the way it might be helpful to start contemplating this handy mantra, only slightly changed from the original sorce:

        ‘The Government is Mother, the Government is Father’

  9. I know I harp on vitamins a lot, but I have done the chain of respiratory illnesses before. And when I did, my doctor stopped it by getting me to take more Vitamin A (although the Bs, C, D, etc. did not hurt).

    Vitamin A is very important to your immune system and respiratory system, and respiratory illnesses draw down your supply. The less you have, the easier you catch another respiratory illness. Beef it up, feel better, get better, stop getting sick. Vitamin A is your friend.

  10. notice some Dems suddenly stopped crying for Northam to resign? And Fairfax is really resisting it?

    Because the AG is caught in the same trap, which means the next person in line is the speaker of the house, which means the Dems lose the governor’s seat.

    1. Here’s a fun one.

      Back when Northam was just endorsing heinous acts of murder, some of the pro Trump folks pointed out that some of the anti-Trump folks had endorsed Northam over his Republican opponent.

      Now that we are talking about racially motivated acts of heinous murder, I’m not seeing anyone argue that opposition to Trump within the GOP is motivated by support for eliminationist white supremacism.

      In conclusion, wordpress delenda est, Posner is a moron, impeach Chief Justice Roberts.

    2. Northam survived what would have buried a Republican.

      But there’s no double standards. Nope.

        1. Yeah, I think they want him to name his replacement, but I ain’t looked at what happens if Fairfax is ousted/resigns.Does Northam get to pick, or is it a special election?

          1. the thing is, he doesn’t *get* to name his replacement, that isn’t how the line of succession works in VA…. in fact, I’m pretty sure this would be exactly why…

              1. Gov resigns, it goes to Fairfax. Fairfax resigns, it goes to AG. AG resigns, it goes to the speaker of the house, who is a Republican. That’s why a lot of Dems are suddenly shutting up.

                    1. Easily done. Northam resigns from the party, declaring himself independent. Dems get to denounce him and “corrupt conservative congressional cabal” (slight GOP majorities in state legislative branches) that condone Northam’s malignancy. They get to spend 2019 running against Right Wing Extremists and Northam’s racial insensitivity … which, since they can’t do squat in the veneer* government, works out pretty well for them.

                      *The deep state, they still control.

              2. Truthfully, I think running about with their hair afire is the Lefties’ preferred state. It is the only way they feel alive.

  11. Get well soon. Beware Facebook. Take time to take care of yourself like you would want someone else in your family to do for themselves.

  12. Yes, there are definitely some unpleasant bugs out there. In some ways, I’d almost rather the one that knocks a person flat for a few days, and then it’s over. I apparently got one of those low-grade ones where I was never obviously sick, but just worn down and messed up enough that I didn’t have that much energy, so I didn’t get antsy when my husband was homebound for two weeks after knee surgery. Too easy to just sit around waiting for the next time he needed help — and when we needed to do a con, I’d lost enough strength and stamina that I completely exhausted myself.

    Now I’m trying to pull myself back together, which means figuring out exercises to rebuilt my strength so I can pick up and carry those boxes when I need to. And stamina enough to get through the drive on each side. And catch up on all the things that slid while I was feeling so worn down flat.

    So do take care of yourself, so you don’t end up losing an entire month of work like I did.

  13. I had the upper respiratory crud last week. Alas and alack, the other residents of Redquarters (but not Athena T. Cat [yet]) got the eye crud. I am hoping against hope that I don’t get that, because it would take me out of the classroom for a solid week.

  14. Maintaining elevated levels of zinc in your blood well short of organism-level complications tends to keep a lot of contagious organisms at bay.

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