Thursday, January 08, 2009

The state of our economy

Today they were hiring at my work. They put out a notice saying they were going to take applications and do interviews between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. this afternoon.

And man did they come! As I said to Lisa, the CSR I was bagging for, it's proof of the sad state of our economy. The hiring didn't even start till 1, and (according to Lisa - I was on break at the time) people started lining up at 12:15! I must have directed at least 15-20 people to where to go just in the last fifteen minutes before hiring started alone! And when I got off work at 3pm, when the hiring was supposed to end, there was still a long line of people waiting!

The only time I have ever seen such a line that I was not in was when I went to Barnes and Noble one day when some midnight release party (for Harry Potter, I think) was supposed to happen. When I left the store around 6 p.m., people were already getting in line. Yeah, seriously. And the only times I've waited in such a line is when I've gone to concerts and such events, and also when I had to wait in line to get my badge at Comic-Con last year and then to get into the Harry Potter panel I was late to thanks to the long badge pickup line I'd just waited in.

I finished The Freedom Writers Diary today. It sounds like all the Writers got to go to college -- and some of them were the first in their families to do so. One of them, whose story comes up in a couple entries, died though before the group's trip to Europe, when the double lung transplant she'd gotten to help deal with her cystic fibrosis was rejected by her body. That was sad. (Frankly, before reading this book, I didn't know you could even get a lung transplant, let alone a double lung transplant, but knowing what I know about CF and what it does to your lungs, I'm glad she at least got it).

I also brought with me this book from my Web Page Fundamentals class called Cool HTML for Web Pages and a book called The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Christian Fiction (a rare find indeed, especially since I found it at a secular bookstore, no less), but I was tired today and didn't get much reading done in either of them. I think I was tired due to having only 6 hours of sleep, plus my period started today (sort of; I saw red on my TP when I went to the bathroom, but my underwear didn't have any blood on it, as usually happens since my period often starts while I'm asleep or in some other situation where I can't easily get to the bathroom right away) after a false alarm yesterday (I get false alarms sometimes - I'll think I'm having the discomfort I usually get on the first day of my period, and so I'll put on a pad, and then look at it later, and there's no blood).

This is the second time I've read any of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Christian Fiction. Despite it being more of a reference book, I have actually read it all the way through. I was put off by it initially because of the author saying science fiction and fantasy were a hard sell in the Christian market (this from a guy who coauthors cozy mysteries with his wife, when mystery is still pretty rare in the Christian market), since those are the genres of the stuff I've primarily been writing for the last few years. But when I looked again, I saw there were two publishers he listed in the book that specifically do take fantasy and/or speculative fiction or both. One is Multnomah. Multnomah is a Christian imprint of Random House, so its acceptance of speculative fiction (the blanket term in literary circles for fantasy, science fiction, and their various cousins and subgenres) is not surprising to me. After all, Random House is also the proud owner of one of the most well-known (if not the most well-known) science fiction and fantasy imprints out there, Del Rey. If you don't know what I'm talking about, think of the Star Wars novels or the pioneering fantasy book The Sword of Shannara. Both of those are/were published by Del Rey. And of course, Del Rey is now so big it has a manga division, as I've mentioned in the past in reference to the Del Rey mangas I own (Pichi Pichi Pitch Mermaid Melody, Tsubasa: RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE,
and xxxHolic). The other publisher is Strang Communications, which publishes speculative fiction under an imprint called "Realms." I've heard of Strang from my days at Loaves and Fishes, but I think pretty much everything I've seen published by them was nonfiction. I could be wrong about that though.

At any rate, this gives me some hope.

I had plans to tie together Us Against the World, Darkly Bound (the tentative title of my Avalon Jacobs story, chosen for when I submitted a chapter of it -- a very BAD chapter -- to Anime Angels), and an as-yet-untitled planned book about the Christian Youth Alliance, starring a girl named Emily who is Avalon's niece. But while Darkly Bound and the CYA story work well together since they are related somewhat, Us Against the World was written totally independently of the other two and would take a good deal of revising to tie it to the others.

In the notebook I brought with me to write down notes from the books, I found a page where I'd tried to plan out what books and story collections I'd do about Walden. Here's the list:


- The Elven Princess
- Hirion and Estelle: A Love Story of the Great War
- The Last Age Begins
- The End of Bitterness

Story Collections

- Tales of the Days Before the Great War
- Tales of the Great War
- Tales After the Great War
- Dwarven Tales
- Dwelven Tales
- Sea-people Tales

The "story collection" ones are more tentative than anything else; but giving them generic titles gives me an idea of which tales I would do in them. Tales of the Nuri Fidele (elves) and men would be in the first three collections, whereas the other races - dwarves, dwelves, and sea-people - would be featured in the other three, as the titles suggest.

I might rename the war due to the term "The Great War" often being used for World War I.

Also, if I do write these tales, I will probably have to make a timeline of Walden events, a la Tolkien. I have written a few "Tales of Walden" already, as separate stories. They are called "The Tale of Lady Victoria," "How the Irvin Settled With the Sea-People," and "The Paradise Charm." Also, though it is not named, I did technically write the Tale of Argus and Alan, which would be a dwelvish tale.

Ah yes, dwelves. My one success at originality in a series that could end up very Tolkien-like. Dwelves are a mix of dwarves and elves, resulting both from the marriage of Hirion and Estelle and from marriages between elves and dwarves when people from Linus's group in "How the Irvin Settled with the Sea-People" settled in the Forest of Light with the elves for protection from men trying to take their land.

Ok I hate to end this here but I'm pretty tired again and can't think of anything to say. Goodnight.

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