Friday, February 23, 2007

New Meaning to Bird Brained

Birds Plan Future Meals

One of the scientific arguments I hate the most is the whole "brain size equals intelligence." For some reason, people like to hypothesize that if you have MORE brain matter, you must be smarter. A corollary to this is body to brain size ratio. Meaning: if your brain is big relative to body size, then you're smart. This argument is often used to dismiss the native intelligence of animal species that aren't primates (or cetecea -- whales, dolphins, etc.) It's this same argument that makes people SHOCKED, I tell you, SHOCKED to discover that Einstein's brain was actually smaller than average.

I've always thought that corvids (ravens, crows, jays, magpies, etc.) are smart. My evidence, of course, is all just intuition and anecdotal, however, it's nice when science backs up my feelings.

This bird is smarter than me. Half the time I don't remember to eat breakfast.

Thursday, February 22, 2007


Kelly has a really nice post about his decision not to quit writing. I wrote a response in the comment field that I thought I’d post over here on its own. Go read his first.

I remember the day I decided not to quit writing.

It’s funny you should bring this up because I think it relates a lot to the conversation about being “broken” (which I put in quotes because I don’t like that word, nor do I want to give it any power. I actually started a post of my own about how I think language – but particularly labels – have power over us if we let them, but that’s OT and for another day.)

The day I decided not to quit came at a similar place. I had an agent, my book was being shopped around , and I was struggling to write another novel… or anything. A few days after hearing that my novel, which was loved by a junior editor, had been rejected by the senior, I hit bottom. I just didn’t know if I could take the roller coaster ride any more.

Also, at the time, no one that I _really_ knew had ever done it – gone over the transom. I started to disbelieve it was even possible to rise up from the ranks, as it were. It all seemed like a fairy tale that happened to Other people.

Like you, I realized there really wasn’t anything for it. I couldn’t not write.

Of course, I nearly hit bottom again here at the beginning of my career, but that was after I’d suffered an intense personal loss and I was so NOT going to let the bastards win. Not the same moment at all. Besides, that latter moment wasn’t about me choosing not to write any more, but about refusing to let my writing career die on the vine.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Update on Publicity Pressure

I’m over it.

The package my publicist promised arrived yesterday and I read the articles while consuming vast quantities of caffeine... and suddenly inspiration hit me like a two by four. This is the news flash my brain gave me: girl, you been thinkin’ too hard.

Thus inspired, I cranked out a thousand words about how being a Witch has affected my family. I remembered, actually, a phone call from my father that I got in my first year of college. The daughter of a colleague of his stopped by my dorm room when some friends and I were reading Tarot. As my dad (and thus her parent, also) teachs at a nice Catholic University in a small Wisconsin town, she FREAKED. She freaked all over her parent, who in turn freaked all over mine. My dad called me up absolutely convinced I was practicing the DARK ARTS or some other such nonsense.

I worked it out with my dad... this was years ago, anyway, but the point is this made an absolutely marvelous anecdote to highlight for an article that demystifies Wicca for the Elle-reading set.

Now I'm working on the potential Cosmo which has the working title: "Sex and the Single Witch: Love Potion #9 and Other Ways to Score a Hottie."

I'm telling you, I'm smokin' hot.

Of course Shawn pointed out that could just being the caffeine talking....