July Newsletter (2023)

"We, uh, don't usually get repeat business," the Flood Team guy told me. "Not that we aren't grateful for your loyalty! But damn, I'm sorry."

So it's been an interesting July 2nd: "Records were set as Chicago's O'Hare Airport received more than 3.3 inches of rain, topping the highest total recorded for July 2, which was 2.06 inches set in 1982." Breaking a rainfall record that was set before I was born sounds pretty badass, but it's especially something when you look at the actual rainfall map.

See that really dark red area that got almost 9 inches of rain? That was us. This was our street at 10 am, and the rain continued until 6 pm.

At some point a drain outside our door backed up and water started pouring into the house. We ended up with just over 12 inches of water on the floor.

Skipping to the end:

1. We're safe. The cats are a little traumatized (Chip and Cheddar actually got caught in the water and Chip had to be carried to safety while Cheddar scrambled through it) but safe. Nobody slipped or fell or got electrocuted or infected with anything.

2. The computers are safe. We had to scurry to carry them upstairs, but we got them just in time. I didn't lose any writing or work.

3. Everything else is pretty much fucked. We lost a lot of books that had emotional meaning to us, including a collection of SNES game manuals that I'd been collecting since I was a child. We're pretty gutted about that. Kissmate can't really talk about the books yet without crying. It's rough. A lot of furniture and personal belongings are gone. A lot of stuff that was safe in the last flood (because the water only came to 1 inch) was lost in this one.

4. We have no idea if our insurance will cover this. We're going to file a claim, of course, but time will tell. It's possible that FEMA will declare this area an emergency situation and we might get relief funds that way, but we don't know yet.

5. Our mailing supplies, copies of my books, and Patreon bookmarks are all lost.

So. That's the situation as it stands right now. I'm sorry I don't have happier news to report. We're trying to take this a day at a time. If anyone wants to throw a few dollars our way towards the recovery effort, we have a PayPal at Paypal.me/AnaMardoll. At the same time, please do not feel obligated to give; I know a lot of you are dealing with fires, floods, and various other natural disasters of your own right now. (I don't know if this flood was because of climate change, but it's hard not to imagine it's all interconnected.)

Thank you for being patient with us through this time, and I appreciate all your support. Sending you love,



Because I sadly do not have content to share this month (or at least right now), I come bearing this fascinating and maddening article from The New Yorker about the OceanGate Titan Submersible. This device should never have been allowed in the water.


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