I had such a great week-end at the H. P. Lovecraft Film Festival & CthulhuCon. I rode down to Portland with S. T., after we had recorded a wee video on YouTube about some of his new & forthcoming books. I shared a motel room with Jerad Walters, who owns and operates Centipede Books. He was at the theatre setting up his table in ye dealer's room when we finally arriv'd, & so our room was empty as I walked in. I immediately notic'd a book on my bedside table on which there was -- a yellow book!!!!! My heart jolted as I approached the wondrous thing. A yellow book with an Aubrey Beardsley illustration on it of an old fellow whose face resembled mine when I'm in drag.
THE TANGLED MUSE!
I had told Jerad that I wanted the boards to be yellow, that I wanted the book to look as though it had been publish'd in Oscar Wilde's fin-de-siecle. I took up the book and kept muttering, "Oh my gawd, oh Great Yuggoth, I can't believe, oh my freaking gawd..." I had to go out and shew ye tome to others. Not bothering to unpack or anything, I departed ye motel room and stagger'd outside. I went first to Greg and Maryanne's motel room and knock'd on their door, wanting so to shew yem ye tome as it is dedicated to them & their charming son Victor. Scott Connors and others were nearby, so I shew'd yem ye book & they thought it exquisitely design'd. I left and almost waltz'd to ye theatre, where I found Greg, to whom Jerad had already shewn ye book. Finding Jerad's table, I saw other copies of the book. It is not the official edition but one of six unsign'd pre-publication editions, thus making them the rarest and probably most collectible edition of the book. Jerad hoped to sell the other five copies for $75@ -- & did so promptly. Jerad is still here visiting his friend who lives in Renton and has opened a wee cafe here in Seattle; he returns home to-morrow and will then update his website so that the official sign'd edition of The Tangled Muse may be order'd directly from Centipede Press for $125 per copy. The print run is a mere 150 copies and there seems to be a buzz about ye book, so we are hoping it sells well. I've shewn it on camera on some YouTube videos on my MrWilum channel, one of which I recorded with Jerad at my side. The book is simply spectacular in design.
I can tell that age and ill-health hath really affected me. It was difficult to walk to and from the theatre to ye motel, a mere three blocks. I know my congestive heart failure has really affected things, but had no idea I was so unable to walk any distance without becoming instantly worn out. I was so weary after each night that I did not once attend the after-hours gathering at Tony Starlight's and thus did not imbibe the absinthe cocktails as was my plot. But I got to hang out with writers and others, got to meet and be on a panel with the remarkable Caitlin R. Kiernan. My reading went very well, although I got rather choked up when reading from "Letters from an Old Gent," a sequence of prose poems in the form of letters perhaps written to his friends and loved ones. I read the two address'd to his wife and papa, and it was while reading ye latter that tears began to well. I have such an emotional link to Lovecraft.
One of the best days was Sunday, when I finally met my hardcore punk friend, Connie. She was one of my readers when I was doing my Punk Lust fanzine in ye early 1980's. We used to correspond, lost contact, and she recently found me on Facebook. I had no idea she was now living in Portland. She attended my Sunday panel and reading (and took ye photos above; & that's her sitting next to me outside ye theatre), and then we joined her charming husband Frank for a wonderful meal at Dot's. I love hanging out with old school punx, & they were delightful in every way.
We left early, me and S. T. and Jerad. Jerad came to my pad and we did our video (he was really nervous about being on camera!), but Jerad has a sharp cat allergy and my three cats were getting to him, so I took him to his pal's cafe to hang out and we said our goodbyes. He said that my book will be available for order at the end of this week and then should ship late this month or early November.
Although this was Andrew's last year as director of The H. P. Lovecraft Film Festival, there are others who are working to keep it alive and in Portland. Thus, with luck, I'll see y'all again next year in Portland. Now we concentrate on MythosCon, held in Phoenix in early January, and it is going to be a remarkable Lovecraftian gathering. I hope to see many of you's there.