Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath


Well, I guess it’s winter now. It seems strange that only moments ago, I was trying to think of a way to turn my refrigerator into a giant dehumidifier, and now I’m thinking it’s time to turn my stove into a giant humidifier. So let us begin the season where I bitch about the fact that my landlord is an idiot because I don’t have heat, and where my first concern in life is not getting a cold, or toning down the one I have.

I’m actually sick right now, although I hope I’ve stemmed off the worst of it. I’ve been taking huge amounts of vitamin C, beta-kerotene, multivitamins, all but eliminating any sugar from my diet, and drinking a fuckload of grapefruit juice. In the last 24 hours, I’ve seriously drank a gallon of the stuff. That plus the Indian food I had for lunch Friday to try and burn out the sickness has made my gastrointestinal situation something that you really don’t want to know about.

I also slept all day today, from about midnight last night to about 7:00 tonight. In a sense, I don’t like sleeping that much and killing an entire day, but if my body needs it and it helps, it sure beats sitting around the house. I slept without any drugs or cold medicine, and had bizarre and self-referential dreams, where heavy REM sleep usually takes items from everyday life and replays them, but because of a lack of anything but other sleep in recent memory, it turns dreams into total chaos.

I actually like that kind of thing. I remember at the end of 2000, I had a bunch of “use it or lose it” vacation, so I took something like two or three weeks off, and had no real plans except to hang out, and maybe write a bit. I got really sick and spent most of the time sleeping, sleeping all day and then waking up at three in the morning and drinking a quart of juice and eating a grilled cheese and playing Gauntlet on the Nintendo 64. Then I would go back to bed for another 20 hours, and have these bizarre, self-referential dreams where I was writing down my dreams in a journal, and then writing down that I was writing down dreams in a journal. It was fairly fucked up, but I wish I could have written it all down into a book.

So all of the windows are closed in the house, and it makes it feel much more isolated, but also much warmer. (It unfortunately, is not warm, because the heat isn’t on). But it has a much different vibe to it than the summer, and I’ve noticed it a lot more since the two were so close together this year. In the summer, I’m much more a part of the life right outside my windows, which I don’t entirely like. Now, the house is more of its own sealed ecosystem, like being in a space station or something. I think I like that a lot more.

Speaking of space stations, I’m done reading Red Mars and now I’m working on the very beginning of Green Mars. The book moves to the next generation of people, the kids that were born on Mars, and are now becoming adults. The first book takes place over an extended generation, maybe 50 years in all. It’s amazing, like reading the Lord of the Rings books, except I’m not a fan at all of that stuff, and this has been a more compelling read for me.

I think I’m running down on working on the glossary. I mean, I am still doing the limited-edition print book when CafePress starts doing perfect binding. But I don’t feel like adding more material now, I need to get back to writing. I am working on the next book, the “next Rumored”, and even though I am not writing, I am thinking. Unfortunately, because I am sick, I’m not thinking. I’m sitting in front of the TV with a comforter over me and a million empty grapefruit juice bottles, flipping the channels. I actually watched a big chunk of that Josie and the Pussycats movie last night. One show that I did watch tonight that was interesting was this new NBC show set in Las Vegas, about the life of a casino worker. It’s very catchy, well-filmed, and gives you this insider look at a huge empire behind closed doors in the same way that ER gives you an insider look at the adrenaline rush and horror of working in an emergency room. They showed two episodes of this show tonight, and I really did like it. It also makes me really ancy to get back there, which I will later this month.

Not much else. I’ve put a heating pad on my computer chair, and it works well. My back is a little torqued out, a mix of doing nothing and this cold. The heat coming from my chair feels great though. Now I need to move it to the couch and fire up the Playstation 2 for some old fashioned lighting people on fire with flamethrowers in Red Faction.