Friday, November 19, 2010

The Stone of Loneliness

Last night I did a reading at the Merril Collection of Speculative Fiction and Fantasy, which is based upon an enormous donation of books by writer and anthologist Judith Merril and was originally named (back in 1970 when it was founded and such a title seemed like a good idea) The Spaced Out Library.  I also got a tour of the stacks, which contain a really astonishing collection of SF and fantasy.

I read my latest completed story, "For I Have Lain Me Down on the Stone of Loneliness and I'll Not Be Back Again" (my latest assault on the current trend toward giving stories damnably short titles) and then went out for Chinese food with the cream of Ontario fandom.

Today, Rob Sawyer is taking me behind the scenes at the Royal Ontario Museum.  And then SFContario begins, and I'll be as busy as busy can be.  I'll let you know how it goes if I can find the free time to post.

And because I've just given myself an excuse to tell my one and only Judy Merrill story . . .

I only met Judith Merril once.  This was at a Readercon, not long before she died.  I was sitting at a table with a batch of writers, talking, when she came up, walking with difficulty, and sat down.

"You're looking good, Judy," somebody said.

She fixed him with a basilisk glare -- the kind of look you give a fool -- and very carefully said, "I am in constant pain."  Then she smiled the very best smile in the world and added, "But what does that matter?"

God bless you, Judy.  You set the standard for us all.


1 comment:

Lars said...

My old stomping grounds.

My only Judith Merrill encounter was at the Spaced-Out Library, back when it was the Spaced-Out Library. She was uncommonly nice to me.

Used to work behind the scenes at the ROM. Wonderland. This was back in the late 60s, as I recall. There are still some bits and pieces of exhibit on display that were worked upon by people that I knew then, at least in the Dinosaur Gallery.

Hope that you had fun.