Today we are feverishly working on implementing final corrections to IRON AND MAGIC. This will be the second book we finished in the last six months, and it has taken a toll on my communication abilities.
Me, having carried a big pan of fried rice and teriyaki shrimp and beef to the island: Here we go.
Gordon, getting a bowl and a spoon: Awesome.
Me, realizing that I left a wooden spoon in the pan and it’s not the best serving utensil: Do you want a spoon?
Gordon, holding up his spoon: I have a spoon.
Me, struggling for several seconds to communicate the inadequacy of a slotted wooden spoon or the small spoon he is holding for scooping large quantities of rice: No, I mean a spooning spoon. To spoon the rice with.
Me: A spoon! <– because this totally explains everything.
Gordon: I think I’m okay.
There you go. I’m a bit worn out.
In other news, you will know that IRON AND MAGIC is done, because the newsletter with Curran’s twitter will go out as soon as we are finished. You should see it within 24-36 hours. 🙂
Liv W says
Sorry about the fog brain, but congrats! Hope you have some breathing room before the Hidden Legacy novella…
Daniel B says
Oh, Gordon, you spoony bard…
Believe me, we appreciate all you do.
William B says
My wife is from the Philippines and speaks three languages. I enjoy watching her when she gets stuck between the three.
Pat Crouch says
I want to send her flowers and chocolate. Sister, I hear you.
William B. if she is anything like me (also a Filipina) once we get lost between our languages, we resort to good old pantomime!
Being seven months pregnant,I relate to this on a deep, spiritual level.
Oooh, pregnancy brain is a humdinger. But at least you have an excuse. All those hormones short circuit your brain. I think it’s an adaptation so women forget how rough being pregnant is, so they remain willing to do it again.
Baby brain is a thing, too. Maybe it is the exhaustion, but words escaped me for the whole first year. I had to cut myself some slack for not being super-mom.
My mother was a legal secretary and one day she called me in a panic . She said I am copying a document with the “of” in it . Is that a word ? OF doesn’t look like a word to me. I said OF is a proper word and you are just working too hard. Later, she laughed and said I need a day off.
Pat Crouch says
Spoon! I love these tidbits, thank you for sharing. Take care of you.
There should be a specific word for when you know a word but can’t get it to come out of your mouth . . .
Good luck with all the stuff!
We Brits just make up something – like “thingy” or use “whatchamacallit” .
‘Spooning spoon’ makes sense anyway…
Exactly. I’ve done that when my brain has shorted up and I couldn’t come up with the word. “You know, the thing! That things!”
KC Hulsman says
There is terminology for that , several in fact which vary as they have their own nuances so check a dictionary to find the right one.
tip of the tongue (also TOT)
KC Hulsman says
By the way, I used that image because it was cute, and showed the tip of the tongue. Not that I was implying I was sticking my tongue out at you or otherwise being rude.
He’s adorable. That’s what we’re going to notice. We probably wouldn’t mind if you were sticking your tongue out…
I’m down with kommiesmom; but how you know kitty is he? Hmmm inquiring minds want to know
Alas, I am dating myself – again. I was taught that “the masculine includes the feminine when the gender is unknown” in school and sometimes I forget that – no, it really doesn’t.
That said, my cats are both male and I tend to assign “male” to pronouns associated with “cat”.
Ya pays yer money an’ ya takes yer choice, my fren’.
We all have our favorite spoons. I can relate. Now I’m dying for fried rice and shrimp. Sigh.
Ilona, and Gordon too, please take care of yourselves. Hopefully you can rest now and store up for the next couple of months.
NO overdoing is O K
KD is done, check
Hugh , stick a fork in him (pun intend)dead
SO pace yourselves, there’s the November thing (back burner;slow cooking)and the maud thing (simmering along, sans BDH update traumas)and then there’s the next thing … I have high hopes
I am NOTasking for anything …weellll that’s not totally true
I would be eternally gratified if you never stop. your pace your time
I think “a spooning spoon” makes tons of sense but that may be Monday morning talking.
I blame the spork. No one had problems describing spoons until the spork came along.
It’s actually a thing from at least Victorian times. Its original name was “a runcible spoon” (See The Owl and the Pussycat by Edwin Lear, from 1871. I looked it up because I didn’t remember how to spell it.)
Spork is a much more memorable name.
Heh. I Googled “runcible”, and Wikipedia’s answer:
“Runcible” is a nonsense word invented by Edward Lear. The word appears (as an adjective) several times in his works, most famously as the “runcible spoon” used by the Owl and the Pussycat.”
It’s Shakespeare’s fault. He was the king of making up words.
Love your stuff. Take a break soon please. I have one silly question to ask, did you mean to have High look like Tom Hardy? If that’s the case I think he would be a good choice for such a complex character.
Lisa M says
Spooning spoon made sense to me, also. 🙂
Tired brain does this, also menopause brain. We end up doing charades at work sometimes. “You know, the thing that goes like this…” We’ve gotten pretty good at figuring out those clues.
Ana María says
I’m a physician and get aphasic (have trouble finding words) when sleep deprived. Usually my medical brain survives, I guess because I was trained to think while very tired, but my expressive language goes. No English. No Spanish. I’m reduced to saying thingy a lot, and pointing…
thingy is a perfectly good word – I don’t know anyone who doesn’t use it!
State based memory. I bet you were sleep deprived a lot during medical school and residency, too, right?
(And OMG, I know, me too. And some of the migraine meds I’m on increase the likelihood I’ll be aphasic, but on the other hand I have a trick memory that means a lot of the time I’ll remember things verbatim. So I switch between exact quotes and references to “Um, the thingie. It’s, um,” makes hand gestures, “Like a motor. But it only moves straight.” More hand gestures. “And sometimes it’s described at that thingie,” points as a servo rig, “But it’s not. It’s only high precision feed forward!” While my colleagues make suggestions and laugh at me.)
Once we study so hard for a anatomy test that, when someone asked us the name of the course that the test would be, not one of the five people present could remember the word anatomy. Also, english is not my first language so I use “that thing” and hand gestures a lot when I’m realy tired.
In English? I used to sometimes conduct anatomy office hours in Chinese, because we had so many students from China, and anatomy is such a difficult course for second language students. (Of course, part of this was actually helpful – I could explain things in Chinese, and give the vocabulary in English – and then part of it was me running into words I didn’t know or saying dumb things, and everyone laughing, which I figured was at least good for morale.)
Ana María says
When I had my daughter, I had a super woman complex. I was the bread winner, and worked all day, while my house husband took care of the baby, but at night I’d refuse to let him to get up to take care of the crying child, feed her, change her diaper, even though he was perfectly willing, because I wanted to be a good mother. Long story short, she switched her hours early on, so that she’d sleep all day long and wake up every 2 hours at night. For 7 months. I slept for about 2-4 hours per night for that long, and not at a stretch. I’m certain I lost IQ points…Regarding the aphasia, it got so bad, I could hardly speak with my husband, who having stayed at home all day, wanted to converse on the daily news. He really got mad at me, couldn’t understand, when one night, around 3am, I answered a consult from a small outlying ER. I interrogated the physician, diagnosed the problem, asked for information, calculated the patient’s creatinine clearance in my head, then calculated the dose the patient needed of medication, all in the dark. I finished the call. My husband turned the night light on. “ You can talk to other people, and do math in your head, but you only Point to me!”
There is no spoon… ?
(For those not versed in 90s action films, reference: https://youtu.be/uAXtO5dMqEI)
Colleen C. says
You guys have been writing and moving and writing and braining for what seems like 2 years non-stop. I hope you can take a nice long break after MT.
Been there, done that, still trying to spell the tee shirt saying…
O God! That is a great description!
Do not look at any particular word too long, because any collection of letters can become meaningless.
As my mother liked to say, this too shall pass.
I know it didn’t feel funny to you at the time, but that was a great little story to start my Monday with a laugh for a change. Thanks for sharing it and hang in there!
Small consolation, but Mad Rogan and Kate Daniels both advanced handily in the Alpha showdown. I really hope Curran wins his round so we can have a Curran vs. Kate showdown. 😛
So I went on Amazon and looked up Iron and Magic, Diamond Fire and Magic Triumphs. 3 different publishers and 3 different ‘sold by’ entities. And Maud, of course. That sounds like a lot of lawyers and contract stuff. You must be glad it’s ending soon, unless you are cooking up more surprises.
Well, we love all of our series, but we are considering slowing down. KD is a lot of pressure and once the main series is done, I think we will mostly do shorter projects in KD world, like novellas or maybe one or two book arcs with side characters vs an 10 novel monstrosity that is Kate Daniels.
Please rest well after all this madness. It is amazing how many books you guys are able to put out a year but it come at a cost. I hope after KD 10 and Iron & Magic come out you are able to take a well deserved break.
And we appreciate it – Oh, goodness, do we!
Which is why we don’t want you to burn out. We are selfish that way.
Thank you, thank you for years of marvelous stories and great worlds to set them in.
Patricia Schlorke says
I agree with everyone, rest, rest, and rest. Did I say rest? Otherwise spooning the spoon will happen again. 🙂
Bill G says
Another voice raises to say “Rest and refresh yourselves”.
And, thank you. Also, I should say that I’m a bit off, since it took me a couple of readings to note that ‘Iron and Magic’ should be out soon. Zooterkins, how could I miss that?
Oh, yeah … I did get both notifications, so I didn’t foul up my re-subscribing.
This is probably a bad time to ask about Roman, and I hope Desandra’s, trilogy (duck’s and cover’s head) huh?
You poor thing. I hope you can get a vacation soon. Burn out is bad. But I truly appreciate all you do. For reals. Y’all seriously help keep me sane.
+1 for real
It is the second language thingy! It’s like being stuck between two worlds sometimes ?
We I can’t claim a second language, I just have to admit that that thingy that happens with the whatamacallit strikes again!
Soon you can chill out. Your brain fog sounds like half my time trying to communicate with people 50 years younger than I am. Take deep breaths and drink some tea.
When I was in college, I was working on a project and needed a break. I walked home and stared at the door. It had a number lock, and I couldn’t remember the code. It felt like I stood there for a long time trying to remember.
It was a very memorable experience.
Natasha Johnson says
I have done this as well but I also have locked myself out of our cleaning supply closet and had to go change my debit card pin on both my cards because I could not remember them for the life of me. What a tired mom/teacher/no sleep brain will do to you.
Sounds like Benadryl brain. I am running into this a lot this year.
Lynn T. says
Uh, Ilona Andrews, spooning spoon sounds fine. Mother has dementia and the simple description is best otherwise she gets confused, then angry then melts down…. My advice to you is remember all work and no play makes you a very dull person. For a human there is a balance between work, play and other stuff such as physical exercise, spiritual exercise. Sleep,…to be healthy. Being well rounded takes a lot of effort but in people who have achieved is enviable.
Thank you for all that you two and your family do.
Sometimes I swear the word I am searching for is stuck in another dimension. Then my husband will tease me and I will say “You know what I mean Mr. Exacto”. I mean, come on, people who have known you a long time should know what you mean without you have to say all the correct words in the correct order all the time!
Rest up and take a vacation soon – staycation or awaycation – but make sure there is no work involved!
Sarah Q says
Been there, I always consider someone part of my tribe if they can interpret (my husband never gets it right when I struggle, I love him dearly but sometimes we are not on the same wavelength)
Someone needs a vacation!
Have a spoony spoon day.
Mandy Young says
You both rule ! Now take a nap and the order delivery! We all love y’all!
Because I am home sick, and have poor impulse control… (I have this really awesome giant apple butter spoon which I bought because I picked it up and it felt so great in my hand I kept carrying it around the store. Eventually, my ex suggested I develop a form just for it. I think of it as an alternate home defense weapon – watch out, because I will beat the shit out of any invaders, and convictions won’t even be on the table.)
Karen the Griffmom says
Oh, I’m so glad to meet another person with a monster spoon! Mine has a Tiffany blue handle, and I hide it behind the utensil crocks and mixer, so as not to scare my (adult) children – long story.
That sounds fancy! Mine is very plain – it looks pretty much just like a standard issue kitchen utility wood spoon, except it’s sturdier… and 40″ long. It has had various incarnations – such as part of my superhero alter-ego of Magic Chef – and has followed me across the country, but is rather unassuming. (But deadly! In a blunt force sort of way. I mean, if a bokken is deadly…)
Well, of course it is deadly. Every thing (even a spoon) can be deadly if used in the right way…
I totally relate. Am a filipina and speaks 3 languages. Being stuck finding the “correct” word can be challenging when you are exhausted or needing something while cooking and you couldn’t leave the frying pan and you end up stuttering and resorted to pointing with your lips. And all I can get out is “that one” while hoping and praying my spouse knows what i needed. Most of the time he responds with “why didn’t you say so?”. Sigh ?
Tina in NJ says
If memory serves, Ilona promised to take two weeks off once Hugh’s book was done. That sounds like it’s going to be any day now. All I ask is some idea as to what that means for Innkeeper. If we get a few weeks off Innkeeper, I can deal with it if we get some warning (and who wants to work on vacation?). Guys, take a break. You’ve earned it!
Once, I needed to ask my children to call my lost cell phone, so I could use the ringing to look for said phone. All that came out was “Zap it. Ring it. Make it noise!”
Maybe they will forget this someday.
Goodness, I love you people.
Wording is hard. Your husband should obviously just know what you mean! lol
When speaking, my brain is a warren of $5 words pitted with sinkholes where I forget things like how to write a capital letter F (thank goodness for keyboards) or the word for “table” (“you know, the thing you put the eating stuff on!”); shortcuts that make me sound like I have some form of aphasia (“the books go in chronological phylum” “order?” “Yeah that.”); and gaps where words disappear entirely for a moment or five.
Wording is hard.
I lost “Rottweiler” for 3 days once.
I could picture the dog, describe the dog, and could not, for the life of me, produce the name. Of course, I remembered it on the middle of the night, but I haven’t lost it again – yet.
You warned him, he had all the information on the inadequacy of his spoon. Definitely informed consent.
Darn. Now I want fried rice, shrimp and beef teriyaki. I totally would have eaten it out of the pan with my little spoon.
Please don’t burn yourselves out! I imagine your spoon dialogue which is currently somewhat logical just continuing to break down until you get to this type of spoon dialogue:
I don’t think this is a reflection on your communication skills. I have offered a serving spoon to my husband and he has given me a weird look then used the stirring spoon from the pot. . . I may be a male thing.
Patricia Schlorke says
I can relate to the writer’s brain. Only I call it the statistics brain. When I was in school (and it comes up with work), I was concentrating on statistics work so hard that when someone would ask me something else, I would look at them very weird and said “Huh?” One time I asked a classmate “the mean is considered an average?”* She looked at me and told me to take a break.
*By the way, mean is another word for average. 🙂
Yep, definitely needing a break. Once the corrections are done please face-plant on the nearest comfy surface, take deep cleansing breaths, and let your brain relax. Go play with the dogs or pet your yarn whatever it takes to unwind. Yee God’s you guys stop stressing yourselves this hard! Burn out is a serious problem and, while we love what you produce, it is not worth screwing up your health, so please ratchet down your self-imposed schedule to a more reasonable level. The BDH will wait for your work!
I just finished a quick 4 book series, The Sugar Maple Chronicles, by Barbara Bretton. It’s about a half-human, half-witch knitting/yarn shop owner in Vermont who is also the mayor of a paranormal town. She even includes patterns from various knitters. I thought it might be a series you would enjoy, Ilona.
Tina in NJ says
I checked Amazon. There are apparently six volumes in the series. I got the first four as a set in kindle for $0.99! Sounds like what I used to call brain candy.
Thanks Ladies, I’ll look that series up.
It’s a good series. I read it years ago, well the first 4 books anyway, and really enjoyed it.
I have to agree, it’s cute and a fast, fun read. Vacation reading!
A spooning spoon makes perfect sense to me lol. Thank you so much for all the fabulous word crack er, I mean candy you provide to we, the BDH. And I know when your muse knocks you need to listen however perhaps your muse needs a beach and a hammock for a while?
Your pace, your time
Our gratification is the work you produce. So
Spoony Spoon; having been raised by my mother and our community life in the V.I.
I know I totally would have looked at his eating spoon and your slotted spoon and would have know we need a serving spoon.
Braggin’ a little on my own but having grown up with go in the thing room and get the thingy from out of the thing and put it in the ting o’er dere.
(go in the kitchen and get the serving spoon out of the cooking utensil drawer and put it in the potato, macaroni, green salad)[or it might of been a fork if meat platter had none]
Yah know, gurl doan ast me no stupid when ya got eyes to see, mama said.
You caught him young enough, he be trained right when he say let it go.
Yah know; a whip, a chair, even a pistol ain’t enough
You time is the only thing that works when the Horde gets to bumping and thumping just put up the sign that lets us know wait or suffer.
We would all rather wait than suffer your loss of peace of mind.
Your mind is what creates the joy we are clamoring for, cherish it guard it
For everything you do for us thank you
What she said!
And the way she said it! Yes!
LOL, I can relate. Having taken and mostly forgotten French and German 35 years earlier, when I started taking Spanish I was frequently rotating through English and the 2 older languages before I could get to the Spanish word. Got some funky looks from my prof while he waited for me to respond. Frustrating at the time but pretty funny now!!
Thank you for the Curran Twitter! It was fantabulously funny. Have a great evenning
Please rest well and slow down enough to smell the roses. I hope that when you start something new you will consider serializing it for the BDH because the community you have built in the comments section in this tiny mouse hole in the internet really care about each other and so enjoy visiting both with you and with each other all week long. I’m already panicked about what will happen when Maud, Helen, and Arland’s story comes to an end and goes to print. Of course I want the physical book, but I want to keep my new friends as well. ( Is that too much like having your cake and eating it too?)
I’ll bet there’s a group somewhere. I pretty much avoid social media – no FaceBook, no Twitter, no Instagram, etc. – but other folks are more active than I in those realms.
I would be surprised if there was not an offshoot of the BDH somewhere in cyberspace. I might even consider trying out a “social medium” if it were the only way to keep in touch.
Hopefully, it won’t come to that…
+! d*LM*a. Beautifully put.
Hey, Maybe take a nap and spoon!
Thanks for the Newsletter Ilona, Gordon.
Don’t worry about the ‘spoony thing’, it happens to all of us, young and old alike.
Just remember all the times, as mothers, we have called down one of our children and verbally listing each child before we latched on the Right kid. Its embarrassing, but darn, we got the right name to the right kid in the end.
Get some good zzzzzzz’s the next couple of nights (take something if you have too).
Cynthia, one of your BDH addicts
Oh, I have another that happens more frequently than I care to say……… I ‘m cleaning house and I need ‘something’ from upstairs. I reach the top of the steps and pause, ‘what did I come up here for now?’ So I stand there thinking for a few seconds and then it finally comes to me. That is just sooooooo unbelievably annoying.
Even more so when I have to go walk back downstairs to the place I started from, in order to get my brain across the chasm to where that memory has stuck itself!!
I hear U CarolynR !
I really have a few choice words when it goes that far ?
Sara Joy says
circumlocution is the best way to know you’ve reached language fluency, and spoony spoon and thingy should absolutely work for this!
You must be an SLP!
Lea Coates says
In case I haven’t told you today you guys are freaking awesome! Just read “the bribe” and laughed. Our daughter is expecting grandchild No. 1 and I can’t wait to buy it the noisiest present I can find, just like my parents did for my kids.
My first nephew is due in 2 weeks. I’ve never wanted a baby of my own and I’m not sure I would be a good mom, but I think I will be an excellent Aunt. Can’t wait to be the best kind of bad influence on my brother’s kids… and yes, loud toys are a must!
Karen the Griffmom says
I can attest to the insanity-creating properties of something called “The Puff-Puff Ding-Ding Choo-Choo”. My son’s uncles bought it for his second Christmas and thought it was a hoot – I caught them quietly removing the batteries after four hours . . .
Ms. Kim says
I loved that picture. The wood spoon, the black spoon with a little rice, then another wood spoon. It struck me as oriental. Sort of like how they so carefully present food on a plate. Yet, also I sort of thought Scandanavian. Anyway, that picture was true art and it grabbed and held my attention. Thank-you.
Spoon! Spooning spoon! Aaaa hahahaha!
OK…… Ilona, Gordon, I just laughed myself silly over the Curran’s Twitter feed, especially #2 at the bottom of the post from past posting. Hilarious ?
(First time ever reading these)
In the voice of The Tick, “Spooooon!”
If we just signed up for your newsletter, will we also get the Curran Twitter? Thanks!
Has the Curran twitter gone out yet?
I’ll quite happily spoon twice as many times with a small spoon in exchange for not creating an extra utensil to wash.
My mother and my grandmother will 100% serve every item of every dinner in it’s own serving dish. A male will quite happily put the pot or cooking dish in the middle of the table and serve from that.
It didn’t skin in the first time I read it.. But now — a Serving Spoon perhaps? I always use those so I get what you mean 🙂
oops sink in..
I am crying laughing that someone who is so eloquent uttered, “a *spooning* spoon”. Sometimes not all cylinders fire. Feeling better about my own mental backfires. LOL!