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I'm back in the town where I grew up, driving down Avery Street. My Dad is in a car a little ways behind me, and I wait at the corner for him to catch up. Pretty soon we arrive home.

Stephanie - who has been missing for some time, it's unclear why - appears at the door. By this time our father is asleep. She talks about wanting to die. "Why do you want to die," I ask her, thinking maybe if I listen and understand, maybe I can help her to not want to die.

"I don't feel like I'm good at anything," she says. "If I died, would anybody miss me?"

There's a notebook in her hand, with a page full of her drawings and doodles. Wherever she's been, it seems she has been following current events, because her next story seems to be something about Mohammed. I think it is called "Mohammed and the Feather".

I want to talk to her, tell her how much I've missed her, but the words won't come. I just hold her little body in my arms and start sobbing until the tears come.

Then I wake up, and remember how long she's been gone, and that she's not coming back.
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So I got up at my usual 5am after getting to sleep at about 1am. But I slept about an hour earlier in the evening yesterday. So I should get through the day all right.

Nothing quite like getting all your bills paid at 1 in the morning!

The new job is going better than I first thought it would, and the work day generally goes pretty quickly. They let you wear headphones on the job, which is nice, and it allows me to study my Arabic and Farsi while working.

Going to finally, really and truly, finish writing that new chapter to The Queen's Courtesan today. I'm taking my writing pad on my coffee breaks.

I've been getting traffic on the Stephanie tribute site, which is immensely gratifying.

Finished editing and tagging all my old entries.

[ profile] stilken's comment got me to thinking about the intersections between my LJ life and the rest of my-life-in-the-world. More later .....
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So I finally managed to get to bed at a decent hour AND sleep through the night, after a lovely chat with the lovely [ profile] heldc. (Yes, this old dinosaur has finally come round to the IM thingy.)

The job at Hotel California seems to be going smoothly enough. If I can stick it out at HoCal at least until April or May, I'll be able to put some money away for a trip this summer to San Francisco; I'm also going to add a Washington, DC leg to that trip if I possibly can. I've never been to DC before and I'm excited about visiting.

A comment from [ profile] daddicade advises me that LJ has syndicated the new Stephanie site! Here it is:
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I've added enough material to the new site that I feel comfortable saying it is now officially "online":

The poem at the top, "Where the Night Water Runs", is one of my favorites, and I've used the "featured post" feature [?] on TypePad to keep it on the top. New posts come in below. Some of the pieces, including "The Old Captain" and "Conversations with a Flame", are newly transcribed from manuscripts and appear online here for the first time. Others have previously appeared at the earlier tribute sites.

Newly added here is a tagging system which allows you to group posts by genre (e.g. Poetry), theme (Nature), or format (Manuscripts). The image gallery currently includes scans of manuscripts and a few photographs from her scrapbook.

I'm planning to add more text and images over the next few days.
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Two men, a woman, a parrot, and an answering machine.

Stephanie wrote this story when she was about 15 or 16.
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EDIT: What is this stuff, anyway?

Here's the story on the four tribute sites for Stephanie:

The first link is on my TypePad account but is a joint project between myself and three of Stephanie's friends.

The second link is a Yahoo page done by one of Stephanie's friends, the artist Georgianne Fastaia. It's entirely her work and I cannot take any credit for the lovely job she's done.

The third and fourth links are on my Blogger account and were created by me. Of course, all of the writing is Stephanie's.

Also (in case you were wondering):

I do have an online presence apart from LiveJournal. My main project is a current-events blog called "Dreams Into Lightning" which I publish (with minor variations) on both Blogger and TypePad. There is also a site for my SF serial "The Queen's Courtesan / Space Lesbians" which I've been pimping relentlessly here on LJ. These, plus my Flickr page, are linked on the left-hand sidebar of my LiveJournal.

In addition to all of those, I have several minor blogs which I update sporadically.

Hope this answers your questions.
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This afternoon after visiting with TNG, I'm going to get together with three of Stephanie's friends and visit her resting place in Colma. We're also going to start work on a tribute to her life and work. This will be the first time we've all been together since Stephanie was alive, and it will give us a chance to share memories and get re-acquainted with one another.

One of the things that made Stephanie special was her love of life and her joy in existence. If we keep this alive, we'll keep an important part of her spirit alive. Because in spite of all the crazy self-destructive things she did, she was all about living.
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From my earlier post "Stephanie and the Cure for Death":

Stephanie was a year and a half younger than me, but sometimes I felt like I was the younger sister because I looked up to her. I stood in awe of her determination, her independence, her prodigious talent.
read more )
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A big thank you to all who took the time to congratulate me on my first royalty check!

I'm leaving tomorrow for a few days in San Francisco to visit TNG and catch up with a couple of old friends.

TQC report: I've decided to divide the narrative into sections of ten episodes each. So (retroactively) the first episode, dealing with Shakti (the Gilkesh homeworld) becomes the introduction. The next ten episodes form Part I, the next ten Part II, and Part III will end with the upcoming episode. This system will give me a way to pace myself and hopefully tie up some loose ends while developing new aspects of the plot. After Part III is complete, I'm going to take some time to work out the rest of the plot trajectory and add some depth to the settings. Hopefully Part IV will be richer in detail than the story so far has been. I pretty much know how it's going to end, but I have no idea how long it's going to take to get there (remember, this was a two-page short story) or what's going to happen along the way. Most of the events I am making up on the spot; same for the characters. With the exceptions of Kathris, Amira, and Joli, almost all of the characters in the story have been summoned up extemporaneously. Writing this way is scary but fun.

You've heard me mention my sister Stephanie. The other day I found a picture of her, it must have been taken when she was about 26 or 27. (Twenty-eight was as old as she got.) Looking at the picture now, I see our mother's features, and I'm also struck by how much we look alike - the same forbidding eyebrows, the same lines around the mouth. She's looking inscrutably into the camera, giving little of herself away. Without effort, she has perfected the "goth" look - dark clothing, sallow skin (she was a junky), and that distant stare. But she was too intelligent, too independent, too herself to be captured by any pop-culture cliche. I look at the picture and I see her looking back, as if she's looking at me. As if she's asking me a question.

If only I knew how to answer it. If only I knew what the question was.

Stephanie McLintock (1964-1992)

September 2017

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