Thursday, July 14, 2011

ray bradbury induction into DL&CS

ON THIS DAY, 14 July, 2011, Mr. Ray Bradbury is formally inducted into my little honorary group, the Dreamland Literary and Cinematic Society, in recognition of his many decades of unique and influential artistic contributions.

* * *

Sir, your writing helped change my life. It's as simple and marvelous as that. It seized my attention as a young person, ignited my imagination, and transported me again and again. Your work detonated in my mind, set off fireworks of love and instrospection, and inspired me to go down the path of the wordsmith, and it also set a standard of crazy brilliance I knew I could never hope to meet.

It was my honor to express to you the short version of these long-held sentiments in person at the Planetfest conference in Pasadena, California back in 1981, and I will always remember your absolute graciousness as I tried to explain in fifty words or less what you meant to me-- and still do. I read somewhere that you remember everything in your life-- everything! How marvelous! (I like to think you remember the young blonde who broke free of her introverted nature, had a kind of out-of-body experience and slipped up to you that afternoon and quietly interrupted your pre-talk thoughts while Diane Ackerman-- I thought of her as your warmup act-- was reciting her poetry).

Your books and stories are unique in this world, a voice apart. They would be more than enough to earn the heartfelt gratitude of people everywhere, but your ongoing outspoken support of manned space exploration has always been heroic and deeply appreciated. I personally understood this with deep certainty that hot July night when we walked on the moon, and I listened with tears filling my eyes while you gave us the words and perspective we needed during that miracle.

Countless people truly love your rich, poetic excesses. We also love your fist-pounding passion, your ire and indignation, your unrestrained joy. It's impossible not to love the person behind the work.

Thank you, thank you forever.

brenda cox giguere

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


We drove to the desert on Saturday and came back Monday afternoon. A much-needed change of venue.

Friday I will be learning of the results of my recent thyroid biopsy. In the meantime I am busying myself with domestic fuss and nonsense, napping, reading, napping some more, movies, reading, social networking... in short, everything and nothing, with work on my book conspicuous by its absence (unless you count scribbling down a few notes).

The house is quiet. I've spent the last couple of long afternoons out on the balcony, and the sun makes me sleepy. My tomato seeds have sprung up, but as I planted them several weeks later than optimal, it's by no means certain we'll have tomatoes this season before winter sets in. But of course, we're talking about a Southern California winter, so all may not be lost. We'll see.

The basil is looking a bit tatty. I should have harvested a whole bunch of it at once and made pesto instead of just taking a few leaves here and there for salads. But under the sun it smells wonderful when I'm sitting next to it.

Next week I have a one-day video job up in Modesto. I'll be driving, using it as the basis for a visit to the Bay Area. I haven't seen my dad or sister in a while, and am looking forward to it.

It's eleven PM, and I've just loaded Tron Legacy onto my iPad. Maybe it will inspire some beautiful dreams. Maybe tomorrow I'll ignore the remaining housework.

"Flyaway" by Desmond Bagley just arrived on my doorstep today, recommended by my father as a riveting book suitable for turning into a film.

I'm currently about to read the last chapter of "Fifth Head of Cerberus" by Gene Wolfe.

This about sums things up. Tomorrow I'll either take a long walk, or a swim.



Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Missi Nutmeg was my beloved cat companion nearly every day of my life from 1996 until 2011.

Last week I made the heart-wrenching decision to fulfill my longstanding contract with her to take care of her when things started to get bad.

Sometimes we have to do the right thing in the best interest of those creatures that depend on us, but that doesn't make it easy or less painful. When I let her go I cried more tears than I thought I had in me; it was days before I could even talk about it without falling into despair.

Truly, I was blessed to have her with me on this journey for as long as I did. She was a wonderful cat, and I loved her dearly. It was worth the effort of treating her diabetes and keeping her healthy and happy for the last three years.

No bad days. That was my promise.

And so you might understand that I'd like to simply close the subject for now. Thank you, friends.