Once or twice a year I interrupt this story stream in order to file some reports from reality, make announcements and check in. Hi, how are you? I'm fine; thanks for asking. And the kids? Super, super, super.
My day job as Chief Napkin Folder of an edgy and very now international event management concern is going at full tilt. We're managing events like it's going out of style. Things are so busy that I will even be obliged to travel some in the New Year, as we're spread too thin with painfully simultaneous projects for me to man my usual station on the homefront, charged with critical duties like reading fart jokes on the Internet and writing science-fiction.
My government keeps promising me an economic recession, so I'm not about to complain about the company I work for being too busy. (Though, admittedly, a little bit of profit sharing would go a long way toward sugaring the bitter pill of the inevitable reams of overtime (if you're reading this, boss, yes that is a hint).)
This winter, in part because there isn't a profit sharing programme at my day job, I will also be moonlighting. My house badly needs a new roof, or it risks becoming markedly less house-like (as it is, this old schoolhouse already shares more in common with a tree fort than would, strictly speaking, be ideal). Also, I owe Revenue Canada some taxes I didn't feel like paying earlier; they have since convinced me to have a change of heart -- apparently there's a queue at the emergency room and it's all my fault.
The net result is that I really have my non-writing work cut out for me over the next few months. Additionally, my wife -- who is currently teaching singing lessons as well as working at the post office and driving the village schoolbus -- will be directing a play, so I'll be taking on extra childcare time for a spell.
To wit, the upcoming story stream schedule:
The Secret Mathematic will go on temporary hiatus. The conclusion simply needs too much work to be whipped into proper shape before the New Year and, after a year of sticking with me on this one, you deserve a better ending than one that's been rushed. We will complete this epic adventure presently, but in the meantime...
This year's holiday tale (as yet untitled) will start its run soon. It is a twelve part science-fiction novelette with a more mature target audience than the holiday stories of years past (One Small Step for Santa | Pink Santa). It features robots. Lots of robots. Everybody loves robots. Right?
The second quarter of 2009 will bring more short stories on various subjects and set in various time periods (pent up imaginings of mine from time spent locked in The Secret Mathematic exclusive zone), and then in the third quarter we'll start looking at the next novel (current working title The Impossible Railway).
Thank you all for your thoughtful feedback and criticisms over the past year. You're the ones making these stories stronger. I've learned a lot, and I'm anxious to apply my lessons to the freshest material.
Please do continue to call me out when your credulity is strained. Please do continue to tell me when the vocabulary isn't working for you. Let me know when a development is a let down.
All of your reactions are valuable, regardless of whether others might question the soundness of their basis from time to time. You don't need to back yourself up with an unassailably cogent argument in order to offer a response on this blog -- your reflexive feelings are entirely valid on their own merits.
Keep it up.
(Also note that those who might be too shy to post comments on the blog itself can still contact me directly at email@example.com via e-mail or GTalk. For regular micro-updates in the public sphere, follow me on Twitter.)
I really do have a difficult and busy period ahead of me, but I'll do my best to make sure this fiction faucet maintains at least a steady drip. Regular gushing service will be restored as soon as humanly possible.