Last night the Santa Ana winds kicked in around 2 a.m., shaking the house and howling around the eaves, and so it was no surprise that I woke up this morning and saw horrific fires erupting in Malibu and elsewhere. I’ve spent most of today working on the website, with the TV on across the room to watch the continuous, ongoing news, and it’s not getting any better; now fires in Canyon Country, 15 or 20 miles northeast of me, have reached edges of the suburbs and have started to consume homes. (Oddly, it hasn’t been hot — it hasn’t been much above 70 F all day, here — but it’s *dry*, following a record breaking drought year, and the winds, kicking up to 60 and 80 mph last night, caused power lines to arc and subsequently spread sparks.) Other fires have been erupting all day in various spots in southern California, from LA County down to San Diego, in seemingly preternatural coincidence, some dying down or quickly put down, others growing into treacherous firestorms. It’s something I’ve witnessed all my life, living here in SoCal, aware that a nearby conflagration could drop an ember onto my rooftop at any moment…

Meanwhile, I’ve been trying to catch up on book listings before leaving next weekend for New England and the World Fantasy Convention. The reformatted homepage is posted; the Site Map now links this homepage capture from earlier today before the redesign went online. There’s been a curious debate among SMOFs about the difficulties with the yet-again-proposed Best Website Hugo Award, since websites constantly change; how can you vote on the website as it was in the year of eligibility? For what it’s worth, I’ve always kept archived captures of previous homepages, and every redesign, such as today’s, uses a new style sheet link, so older pages are never changed. It seems only the honest thing to do.

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