Dial M for Mattress

New mattress! Better sleeps ahead.

Today our new bed arrived. This is good, as the old one had two springs sticking out of the sides that tried to murder us every time we got in and out of the damn thing.

This one is not a continuous coil, as the last one was — this one is individual coil pockets. Much safer, and much better on one’s broken back. (One, in this case, being me.)

I am excited for better sleeps and fewer murderful mornings ahead! I think we all need fewer murderful mornings.

Also, I am pleased that although it is raining today the salamanders smartened up and were no where near the front step when the mattress was delivered. Because nothing would have protected them from two box springs and two mattresses being dragged in and out of the house.

One of our suicidal amphibious visitors!

Glad you’re alright, little buddy. Stay safe, amphibious friend!

Life with a Writer

A conversation between Mr. Katje and myself yesterday.

Mr. Katje (holding up pens): My pens.
Me: I have lots of pens.
Mr. Katje: I know, and you are a pen magpie, so if I don’t say these are MY pens they might just disappear on me.
Me (laughing): I don’t know what you’re talking about.
Mr. Katje: CAW CAW CAW
Me: ::bursts into giggles::
Mr. Katje: ADMIT IT
Me: I admit nothing!
Mr. Katje: and yet I hear no denial!

He’s right to be worried. I got my eyes on his Sharpie.

(No, that’s not a euphemism.)

(Maybe.)

Thoughts on the Robocop Remake

There are no spoilers in this post — nothing you wouldn’t know from watching the trailers. But, I’ll put part of it behind a cut anyway.

Our brother in law took us out to see Robocop last night. We weren’t going to see it otherwise; it was definitely something we didn’t want to pay money for.

It wasn’t as bad as we thought it would be. It wasn’t terrible.

It wasn’t awesome, either.

Continue reading Thoughts on the Robocop Remake

Four Silly Salamanders

I wish I had a picture.

Last night, as Mr. Katje and I were leaving our new place to go sleep at the old place (bed has still not been moved over), we discovered we had visitors — in the form of 4 salamanders on our front step.

Four stupid salamanders. One was in the way, and we didn’t want it to get smushed. We nudged it a little bit and it just sort of went limp. We ended up having to move it ourselves. Then it sat there and looked at us with this angry face on.

Same with the others, who I tried to nudge to get them to move out of the way so it’d be safer for us to leave the house. I really didn’t want to squish them. Nope, nothing doing. They were like cats who didn’t want to leave the sofa.

We left the house with great care, as our front porch light needed a new bulb and it was very dark and the salamanders blended perfectly into the step. Luckily, none were squished, and today we picked up new light bulbs so future salamander visitors can sleep soundly. Or, you know, sit around and do nothing soundly.

Silly or not, the salamanders were very cute. Next time, I will take a picture so I can show you too.

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week

Content warning: disordered eating

This week is National Eating Disorder Awareness Week (NEDA). Funnily enough I wasn’t aware of this, though I have spoken openly about my eating disorders before on this blog, and I am pro-awareness about them. It showed up in my Google+ feed as I was scrolling last night, and I clicked through to read more about it.

NEDA is pretty good. It acknowledges that eating disorders affect people of all races, ages, genders, and sizes. This is really important. There’s a belief in our society that “eating disorder” is synonymous with “thin, young white woman”. It’s not. Anyone can suffer from an eating disorder, and you can’t look at someone and assume they have one or not based on their appearance.

If you don’t know much about eating disorders, you can read this page and it will give you a good overview. In particular, pay attention to the list of what you should or should not do if trying to help someone with an eating disorder. I’ve had everything on the Don’t list done to me by well meaning people (and some not so well meaning) and I can tell you: it all drove me further into the arms of my disordered eating.

The best thing you can do for someone who suffers from an eating disorder is reaffirm their personal agency and bodily autonomy. Many of us develop eating disorders because of a feeling of loss of control; even if that’s not the cause, having our agency and autonomy denied can definitely worsen the problem.

You probably love someone who suffers from eating disorders. Please read up the info on the NEDA site and learn how to deal with us. Good intentions will not make up for a lack of skill in talking about this sort of thing, nor will they un-trigger someone who’s triggered.

There’s also my post about how to treat a loved one with eating disorders, if you feel like reading a lot of swear words.

If you don’t know what to say, just share something on social media related to NEDA. It will say you’re there and ready to listen — whenever those you love are ready to talk.

Be excellent to each other.

-Katje

Hey look, it’s Ragnarok

I really was not expecting the Facebook weather forecast to be correct.

Ragnarok!

Seriously was not expecting snow today. Not very happy with this turn of events. Wish the snow had waited till tomorrow, when I could just stay inside with a blanket and a book.

But Ragnarok never comes at a convenient time, so while the sun and moon are devoured by wolves I will spend my afternoon launching my book about wolves that don’t eat giant celestial bodies.

Here’s hoping other people decide to brave the end of the world, too, and we can have a good party at the café.

This Week at WolfHouse

I’m more a fan of “Wolf Haus” but mom likes WolfHouse, so there you go.

Overheard at WolfHouse

  • That’s a fantastic coffee! Accompanied by RAT DANCE.
  • Hey, Tyee is helping us renovate by ripping up the linoleum in the kitchen!
  • Oh, fireplace, I love you. Let’s elope.
  • Pack Leader, I’m worried about Mistress. WHY IS SHE ALWAYS GOING TO THE VET?
  • I think the oven is possessed.

Some context:

WolfHouse is having a bit of a rat problem right now. No biggie…except, well, the rats are huge. Apparently they’re Norwegian Roof Rats, and they come into houses because they don’t like the cold. My reaction to this:

Norwegian rats who don’t like the cold? What, did Norway send us their defective rats? What the hell? I DEMAND BETTER RATS.”

::shakes fist at Norway::

Yesterday morning I woke up to a loud thumping sound from the kitchen. It was a massive rat, caught in the trap under the sink. A while later another came by, and they started making more noise under the cupboard, thumping all over the place. Mom dubbed this RAT DANCE and then called the rat man to get him to come take care of the rats.

Tyee was very interested in the rats, and started going into Hunter Mode. He scraped and scrabbled at the floor, hoping it would help him get into the cupboard where he could hunt the rats. This prompted me to make a comment about him helping us renovate by ripping up the kitchen linoleum. Not really, though; that stuff is tough.

We would have let him hunt the rats if there were no danger of said rodents getting into some poison, but there is. Mom was at the end of her rope a while ago and put out poison for the things. She felt awful but didn’t know what else to do — she’d bought a humane trap and every time the rats took the treats out and left it still open.

The original trap didn’t work, the poison didn’t work, and now we have the Rat Man and his traps. He sets the trap up, the rats get caught, he comes and gets them.

If the rats could mind their own business and leave us alone we wouldn’t have to do this, but they get into our food and keep us up by running around in the walls and basically make life very difficult, so we are forced to deal with them even though we’d prefer not to hurt or torture them. Being human can be pretty rough on your soul sometimes.

~

The fireplace and I are in love. I stand by it and it warms my butt up. This is obviously true love. We are going to elope.

~

Tyee is worried about me, because I am always going to “the vet”. Wednesday I had surgery at the hospital, Thursday I had a doctor’s appointment, and Friday I had a follow up dentist appointment. Tyee can smell the medicine on me each time and looks at me worriedly before cocking his head in confusion, as if he’s saying “But you have no balls to cut off! What could they be doing to you?”

It’s honestly not that hard to confuse a wolf-dog.

(Also, you’ll notice Tyee uses the wrong pronouns for me. That’s okay; I don’t ask him to try and grasp the intricacies of my genderqueerness. I tried to explain to him a few times about it and he just looked very worried and confused, and then licked my face to show me he still loved me.)

~

Mom’s oven is broken. The CPU is fried. The burners work but the oven(s) (pizza and regular size one both) won’t turn on, nor will the warming centre (which mom calls “the hob”). The buttons are broken, basically.

However, this did not stop the oven from turning itself on to 350 degrees Farenheit in the middle of the night on Thursday, nor from beeping at me unprompted throughout the day Friday.

It is possessed. We are getting rid of it and perhaps performing an exorcism.

~

Never a dull moment at WolfHouse, that’s for sure.

2013 James Tiptree Award Winner and Honor List Announced

Recently the honor list and winner of the 2013 James Tiptree Award were announced. I’m not sure when exactly this happened; I was too preoccupied with moving since late January and surgery + recovery this week to continue with my obsessive refreshing of the Tiptree website (some of you may remember my book was nominated).

I’d like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to N.A. Sulway, author of Rupetta, winner of the 2013 Tiptree Award.

I’d also like to extend congratulations to the members of the honor list: Eleanor Arnason, Aliette de Bodard, Nicola Griffith, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Ann Leckie, Bennett Madison, Sarah McCarry, Janelle Monae, Helene Wecker, and S.M. Wheeler.

I didn’t expect Bellica to win the Tiptree, but I did entertain some hopes of being short-listed. I would be lying if I said my pride weren’t a little bit stung right now.

But I can see the logic. Bellica was my first novel and it was incredibly long. It’s not terribly revolutionary. It’s good, but perhaps it’s not award or short list material. (And who knows — Canada Post says the copies of the book arrived on time, but perhaps they didn’t. That would suck, but it would also be my fault for not getting the books out earlier.)

Bottom line: I’m okay with Bellica not winning or making the list. I think my other books will have a better chance at being listed for awards, even if I never win any (with which I am also okay). I have a lot of faith in my latest book, Stranger Skies, and the rest of the series that will follow.

Though my pride is stung — I am a Leo, after all — I do not harbour any bitterness or resentment towards the judges or the winners. The authors on that list worked hard for this achievement and they deserve it. I wish them well, and I will add their works to my To Be Read list.

I encourage you to do the same.

-Katje

PS: for the record, Stranger Skies is eligible for the 2014 Tiptree. If you feel it should be nominated, you can do so here: 2014 Tiptree Nomination Form.

Please do not nominate it unless you truly feel it deserves to be considered. (This requires that you have read it.)