This was the day we packed out. There was a 14-hour drive back to Seattle that needed to start early, so we debated whether or not to go to the panels that morning. Eventually we decided we should, as Jessie said that it was the panel that she most wanted to go to, and I was eager to stay as long as possible.

How Many Roads? (Reading multiple-viewpoint stories): A great panel, led by L. Kimmel Duchamp, with LeGuin, Vylar Kaftan, and others on the panel. Very informative, with lots of good points about both reading and writing multiple viewpoint stories. Best line of the con was Kaftan, discussing the difficulty of describing a first-person viewpoint character: “Nobody looks at themselves in the mirror and thinks about what they look like. But if you do, come up and talk to me afterwards, because I want to put you into a story.”

Driving home: Did I mention that I got a ticket on the way down to CA for going 90 mph in a 65 mph zone? Anyway, as we’re driving home, we pull into a gas station and at the pump next to us is the same cop that pulled me over. He was in his civilian clothes filling up his truck… just where we happened to pull in. He refrained from getting us another ticket, but he did wink at me as I was coming out of the bathroom, which creeped me out.

We got in at about 2am, and promptly collapsed into bed. Everyone agreed that it was a fantastic weekend, though.

Tetris Dooms Itself by Meghan McCarron, currently up at Clarkesworld.com, reminds me a lot of Kill Me by Vylar Kaftan. Aside from the themes of sadism and masochism, they both left me feeling icky. Stories about extreme sadomasochism just don’t work for me. In the case of Tetris Dooms Itself, there’s the bonus of not understanding much of what happened in the story, even at the literal level.

On the plus side, Blue Ink by Yoon Ha Lee was awesome.

Vylar Kaftan wrote an interesting post about stories that are three sentences off. I was going to leave her a nice comment, but the server she’s hosted on ate one comment, and didn’t seem to work when I tried to post another. So instead I’m writing this post, and maybe the pingback will work. (After meeting her husband Shannon and recognizing him as a fellow Linux geek with a tiny laptop that was teh k00l, I suspect that her site is hosted on a server in their garage. Shannon: get some more CPU and/or bandwidth on that baby.)

Do you ever write a story, and have it ALMOST working–but it’s three sentences off?

Approximately three sentences, of course. Might be a few more or less. Might be sentences you need to add, delete, change, or some combination of the above. But those tiny changes make all the difference.

Yes. This happens to me all the time. However, I am lazier, or perhaps more impatient than Vy. If I get to that point and I can’t see what the fix is, I’m sorely tempted to say “What the hell”, slap it in an envelope, and send it on its way. This is a terrible idea. What I really should do is set it aside for a few days and come back to it later. That usually gives me the perspective to see what’s wrong, or (more likely) gives me the perspective to see dozens of other things that are wrong.

Although I successfully evaded that problem with my two most recent subs, as both Lights and Confession of Adrianna Belle had problems in their endings that I did eventually fix. I think I’m perfectly happy with each of them at present.