SciFi & Fantasy Novels

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  • More about the “Strong Female Character”…

    SF Novelists
    Alma Alexander
    5 Jul 2014 | 5:00 am
        What is a “strong female character”? This article has an opinion on it, and discusses how little of it there actually is out there, despite the lip service to the concept. Time after time we get a female character who is interesting,  rounded,  ALIVE, strong…and is then smothered in the male protagonist’s story arc because none of those attributes are considered to be important enough for her to be given her own rock to stand on. A friend of mine  says we don’t need “strong female characters” so much as “female characters with *agency*”, that is to say…
  • Wax on, wax off

    SF Novelists
    Marie Brennan
    16 Jul 2014 | 3:00 am
    In two days, I will get on a series of planes and fly to Okinawa, where I will spend several days doing karate in an un-airconditioned budokan. I’ve been practicing karate for more than five years now, but this is my first time attending this seminar, which is organized by the man who runs my dojo — Oshiro Toshihiro, who is a ninth degree black belt in our unarmed style, eighth degree in the associated weapons style. There will be attendees from all over the world, and let’s just say this is the sort of crowd where having a black belt doesn’t impress anybody. I mean,…
  • Zoo City by Lauren Beukes

    26 Jul 2014 | 4:43 pm
    Zoo City by Lauren Beukes EBook Edition Published 2010 by Angry Robot Review by N. E. White. Award-winning Zoo City is Lauren Beukes second novel, and though I’m getting to it fairly late, it was published back in 2010, it’s got a lot to offer to today’s reader. A fast-paced urban fantasy with snappy dialogue, […]
  • Notes From the Road: The Shared Journey

    SF Novelists
    David B. Coe
    23 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    I have just returned from a convention and small signing tour to help promote A Plunder of Souls, the third book in my Thieftaker Chronicles (written as D.B. Jackson). I had several good events — a launch party at ConGregate, fun signings with my friends Faith Hunter and A.J. Hartley in Rock Hill, South Carolina and Gastonia, North Carolina, and a couple of great solo signings in Richmond and Raleigh at independent bookstores (Fountain Bookstore and Quail Ridge Books and Music). It was a hectic ten days, but, I think, very productive. I feel that the new novel is off to a good…
  • Prediction Two: Privacy

    James Maxey - Jawbone of an Ass
    20 Jul 2014 | 9:38 am
    Orwell was right. We now live in a world where we're constantly watched. It's not just grainy black and white footage captured by security cameras in banks and supermarkets. With a few keystrokes, I can find color photographs of tens of millions of people doing very personal things, like hanging out with friends and family, going on dates, drinking, or just goofing around. I can see wedding
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  • Zoo City by Lauren Beukes

    26 Jul 2014 | 4:43 pm
    Zoo City by Lauren Beukes EBook Edition Published 2010 by Angry Robot Review by N. E. White. Award-winning Zoo City is Lauren Beukes second novel, and though I’m getting to it fairly late, it was published back in 2010, it’s got a lot to offer to today’s reader. A fast-paced urban fantasy with snappy dialogue, […]
  • The Art of Fred Gambino: Dark Shepherd

    18 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    The Art of Fred Gambino: Dark Shepherd Published by Titan Books, July 2014 160 pages ISBN: 978 178 116 8431 Review by Mark Yon Here’s another of those great Art books Titan are currently publishing. This time, (after John Harris’ HERE and Chris Foss HERE) it’s Fred Gambino. Personally I’ve come across Fred’s work through […]
  • Terra’s World by Mitch Benn (Terra #2)

    Mark Chitty
    17 Jul 2014 | 1:00 am
    Terra’s World (Terra #2) is Mitch Benn’s follow up to his hugely enjoyable debut, Terra. Still focusing on the titular character of Terra, Terra’s World ups the stakes while still keeping everything that made the first novel so special. A couple of years have passed since Terra returned to Earth to live with her biological […]
  • What Makes Urban Fantasy by Gail Z. Martin

    14 Jul 2014 | 9:10 am
    If you want to get down to bare bones, what defines “urban fantasy” is the setting. By definition, it’s….urban. Often set in a big city, sometimes in a small town, the story also takes place here and now, as opposed to a long time ago and far away. But beyond that, how binding are the […]
  • Getting Lucky by J. M. Odell

    12 Jul 2014 | 6:13 pm
    From the anthology, Lucky or Unlucky? 13 Stories of Fate, is a story where luck gets turned around more than once… Getting Lucky by J. M. Odell Giles stood on the sidewalk outside the subway entrance. He pulled off his glasses to wipe them dry. Fog covered the street like a shroud. It cut off […]
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    SF Novelists

  • Notes From the Road: The Shared Journey

    David B. Coe
    23 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    I have just returned from a convention and small signing tour to help promote A Plunder of Souls, the third book in my Thieftaker Chronicles (written as D.B. Jackson). I had several good events — a launch party at ConGregate, fun signings with my friends Faith Hunter and A.J. Hartley in Rock Hill, South Carolina and Gastonia, North Carolina, and a couple of great solo signings in Richmond and Raleigh at independent bookstores (Fountain Bookstore and Quail Ridge Books and Music). It was a hectic ten days, but, I think, very productive. I feel that the new novel is off to a good…
  • Wax on, wax off

    Marie Brennan
    16 Jul 2014 | 3:00 am
    In two days, I will get on a series of planes and fly to Okinawa, where I will spend several days doing karate in an un-airconditioned budokan. I’ve been practicing karate for more than five years now, but this is my first time attending this seminar, which is organized by the man who runs my dojo — Oshiro Toshihiro, who is a ninth degree black belt in our unarmed style, eighth degree in the associated weapons style. There will be attendees from all over the world, and let’s just say this is the sort of crowd where having a black belt doesn’t impress anybody. I mean,…
  • More about the “Strong Female Character”…

    Alma Alexander
    5 Jul 2014 | 5:00 am
        What is a “strong female character”? This article has an opinion on it, and discusses how little of it there actually is out there, despite the lip service to the concept. Time after time we get a female character who is interesting,  rounded,  ALIVE, strong…and is then smothered in the male protagonist’s story arc because none of those attributes are considered to be important enough for her to be given her own rock to stand on. A friend of mine  says we don’t need “strong female characters” so much as “female characters with *agency*”, that is to say…
  • My Blog Tour Begins . . . With a Post About Blog Tours

    David B. Coe
    23 Jun 2014 | 5:00 am
    Today I begin officially the Summer 2014 Plunder of Souls Blog Tour, and I thought it might be fun to kick off this year’s tour with a post about how I go about putting one together.  Blog tours can be much more than just a chance to self-promote, although obviously that’s the goal that lies at the root of all this work.  Tours of this kind can be fun, they can be an excuse to try new things and be truly creative not only with our publicity, but also with our books, our characters, and our setting. For those who are not familiar with my Thieftaker Chronicles series, or who have not…
  • What I Learned From My Kickstarter

    Marie Brennan
    16 Jun 2014 | 3:00 am
    1) You will no sooner click “launch my project!” than you will begin receiving a whole new kind of spam. It turns out there’s an entire cottage industry devoted to offering promotional services for hapless Kickstarter newbies. Given that the great fear of every person who runs a campaign is “what if I held a Kickstarter and nobody came?,” I imagine these people make bank. Which is a very great pity, since a lot of campaigns don’t reach their funding goals, meaning the money handed over to these promotional gurus is just frittered away. Unless, of course,…
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    James Maxey - Jawbone of an Ass

  • Prediction Two: Privacy

    20 Jul 2014 | 9:38 am
    Orwell was right. We now live in a world where we're constantly watched. It's not just grainy black and white footage captured by security cameras in banks and supermarkets. With a few keystrokes, I can find color photographs of tens of millions of people doing very personal things, like hanging out with friends and family, going on dates, drinking, or just goofing around. I can see wedding
  • Predictions for the future (a series): 1. Climate Catastrophes

    11 Jul 2014 | 7:20 am
    I'm heading to a science fiction convention in a few hours and will be on a few panels where I'll probably wind up talking about the future. Tonight, for instance, I have a panel on the future of artificial intelligence. Why does being a science fiction writer qualify me to talk about the future? It doesn't. All I can do is guess like everyone else. Still, the speculation is fun, and, as an
  • A devil's advocate argument for Intelligent Design

    5 Jun 2014 | 4:00 pm
    At ConCarolina's last weekend, I was on a panel to discuss Creationism/Intelligent Design vs Evolution. I had a hunch the panel would be dominated by the evolution side. I dislike lopsided debates, so I wanted to come in with the strongest argument for Intelligent Design I could muster. This wasn't easy, since most of Intelligent Design arguments boil down to three unconvincing ideas: We
  • launches!

    28 May 2014 | 6:19 pm
    So, it turns out this world wide web thing might not be a fad after all. Despite having two blogs and a Facebook page, I've never taken the time to actually set up a website devoted to my writing. I'm happy to announce that changes today. With the help of my friend Jesse Bernier, I'm launching a site that will consolidate both my blog feeds, provide a handy billboard for upcoming events, and
  • Because we're insane... 100 miles in 3 days. Plus, thoughts on body/mind duality.

    24 May 2014 | 5:25 am
    Cheryl and I are constantly thinking about what our next physical challenge should be. A fifty mile bike ride? Been there, done that. Hiking to all 5 peaks in Hanging Rock on the same day? Checked off the list. Run in 5ks? Done it, have the t-shirts. Ocean kayaking all around Murrells Inlet? Not nearly as tough as we thought it might be. Now, because we're insane, in about an hour we'll be
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    KRAD's Inaccurate Guide to Life

  • final table of contents for Without a License

    27 Jul 2014 | 8:19 pm
    Later this year, Dark Quest Books will be publishing Without a License: The Fantastic Worlds of Keith R.A. DeCandido, a collection of my short fiction. I've finalized the table of contents, and here's what's gonna be in it:"Partners in Crime" (a new Dragon Precinct story written for this collection)"The Ballad of Big Charlie" (originally published in V-Wars, part of the shared-world series created by Jonathan Maberry)"A Vampire and a Vampire Hunter Walk Into a Bar" (originally published in Amazing Stories #608)"Under the King's Bridge" (originally published in Liar Liar)"The Stone of the…
  • I'm a Scribe Award loser again!

    25 Jul 2014 | 9:49 pm
    For the sixth time, I have not won the Scribe Award, in this case losing out on Best Original Non-Speculative Novel for Leverage: The Zoo Job to Greg Cox and Hy Conrad, who were tied for victory in that category. Greg had the other Leverage novel on the docket, The Bestseller Job, and Hy wrote Mr. Monk Helps Himself.Dunno who the other winners were yet, but I'm sure they'll be available soon......
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: "Empok Nor"

    25 Jul 2014 | 12:04 pm
    O'Brien, Garak, Nog, and four redshirts go to DS9's sister station to scrounge for spare parts and find two psychotic Cardassians. Guess which four don't survive. Go on. Guess. The DS9 Rewatch travels to "Empok Nor."An excerpt:This is made worse by the climax, in which we’re supposed to believe that Garak, who has been sufficiently taken over by this psychotropic drug that he enjoys killing the first Cardassian soldier, gleefully pursues the second, and has no trouble whatsoever killing Amaro, will suddenly decide not to kill Nog. We’ve seen this before, notably in “The Adversary” and…
  • Friday fanfare: "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer"

    25 Jul 2014 | 11:46 am
    John Lee Hooker is the man. Period.
  • I'll be at the Highland Library Comic Con tomorrow!

    25 Jul 2014 | 10:10 am
    The Highland Library in Highland, New York (near Poughkeepsie) is holding their first-ever comic convention tomorrow from 10am to 4pm. I'm one of the guests, along with authors Linda Zimmerman and C.L. Schneider, comics writer Todd Dezago, cartoonist Roger L. Phillips, and makeup effects artist Danielle Masterson, as well as a dozen local cartoonists and various fan clubs. So come on by! I'll have a table, where I'll be selling and autographing books and answering whatever silly questions you might have for me.....
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  • A First Class Trip to Hell is Still a Trip to Hell

    John Scalzi
    28 Jul 2014 | 2:55 am
    So, the good news about yesterday’s flight home is that I was bumped to first class. Yay! Extra leg room! The bad news about yesterday’s flight home: It left 30 minutes late because they hadn’t finished (or possibly even begun) fueling the plane before we boarded; a dual line of thunderstorms diverted hundreds of miles out of our path, necessitating an unplanned stop at Dallas-Fort Worth in order to refuel; the refueling stop took more than two hours, at least 30 minutes of which came down to waiting for maintenance to say “uh, yeah, you can go, I guess,” that…
  • Ohiobound

    John Scalzi
    27 Jul 2014 | 8:26 am
    San Diego’s been fun — and many other positive things which I will be able to relate, soon — but now I need to find my way back home to the family. You all have a good Sunday. I’m getting on a plane.
  • Saturday in San Diego

    John Scalzi
    26 Jul 2014 | 9:52 am
    There are worse places to be. Today I have business meetings and time with high school friends. Hopefully the former will be productive, and the latter, relaxing. We’ll see! Catch you all later.
  • Yesterday in San Diego

    John Scalzi
    25 Jul 2014 | 9:13 am
    Walk to go get a hat and a Coke Zero. Walk back to hotel. Walk to go find out where my event is. Walk back to hotel to hang out at the Wired Cafe. Walk to event. Walk back to hotel. Walk to bar to hang out with friends. Walk with friend to his next appointment. Walk to the Balboa Theater for w00tstock. Walk from w00tstock to the LA Times Hero Complex party to give away books. Walk from Times party to the Geek and Sundry party. Walk from G&S party back to w00tstock. Walk from w00tstock back to G&S party. Dance a bit. Walk friend back to her hotel. Walk from her hotel back to my hotel.
  • San Diego Comic-con Addendum

    John Scalzi
    24 Jul 2014 | 9:25 am
    I’m quoted today in this Los Angeles Times piece on San Diego Comic-con and issues of harassment. It’s an interesting article and worth reading if you’re not up to date on the issue. I have a couple of addendums to it which I think I worth noting briefly now (I will have some longer thoughts on the whole subject, but they will have to wait until after this weekend): * The article notes that SDCC for the first time sent out e-mails to badge-holders pointing out that it doesn’t tolerate harassment. And you know what? That’s an excellent move and a good way to make…
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    Magical Words

  • Laura Anne Gilman: Rising From The Ashes

    28 Jul 2014 | 3:21 am
    One of the questions I get a lot – having been doing this full-time for a decade now – is “Don’t you ever get tired? Don’t you ever feel burnt out from the constant need to produce?” What they’re really asking is, “is that going to happen to me?” For the longest time – years – I never ran out of things to write. There was always an idea fermenting, waiting for its chance. There was always an idea (or two) in progress, fighting for time in the chair. I was writing three books a year, and while I was more than slightly exhausted all the time, the stories…
  • Joshua Palmatier — My Crazy Writer’s Life

    25 Jul 2014 | 3:00 am
    SHATTERING THE LEY This is my last guest post here at Magical Words for my new novel SHATTERING THE LEY (in stores now).  Again, thanks for having me.  It’s been great fun posting here and I hope the readers have had a blast as well. In this last post, I figured I’d talk about my crazy writer’s life, because it is indeed crazy.  You see, I have a day job, because the writing doesn’t yet pay the bills on a regular basis.  So the day job teaching mathematics at SUNY Oneonta in upstate New York is a necessity.  It’s a great job and I really do enjoy teaching (yes, even math), and…
  • Jennifer Estep — Plotting While Wearing Pants

    24 Jul 2014 | 3:00 am
    Oh, plotting. You and I aren’t the best of friends. More like casual acquaintances, if that. When many folks talk about writing, they often talk about two kinds of writers—plotters and pansters. Now, plotters are just what the name implies. These are the folks who plot out their books, which can include everything from doing a chapter-by-chapter breakdown of the book to detailed character outlines to creating storyboards of the various scenes/chapters. And then there are pansters, or people who don’t do a lot of plotting. I am one of those folks. Usually, when I’m thinking about an…
  • Commiting Series: Saying Goodbye

    Catie Murphy
    23 Jul 2014 | 7:47 am
    So you’ve written a million or so words in lead-up and now you’re at the end of the series. The last book. The grand finale. You’ve spent hundreds, even thousands, of hours with these characters, plotting and twisting your way through their lives. How the heck do you say goodbye? More than that, even: how do you make it worthy? How do you pay off a million words of build-up, a decade of putting stories out there and (hopefully!) having people ask for more? How do you create something *satisfying* at the end of all that, something that will leave you, your characters and your…
  • D.B. Jackson: The Writing Life, part I — Say What?

    22 Jul 2014 | 3:00 am
    This week, in my continuing gig as “guest” on this site, I’m supposed to write about “The Writing Life.”  First of all, it’s just weird being a guest here — I mean, this place has been my literary home for six years.  I feel a little like I went off to college and then returned home, only to find that my room was being used as a bed and breakfast.  I guess now I know how my older daughter feels . . .  (That’s a little joke.  I promise.)  But I also wonder if, after all these years, there is anything I could tell you about my writing life that you don’t already…
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    No Fear of the Future

  • Babylon 5: The Parliament of Dreams

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    22 Jul 2014 | 12:35 pm
    I am re-watching the entire Babylon 5 television series. I had not seen a single episode since B5 completed its tumultuous run. Does J. Michael Straczynski still have the touch? Come along and find out. In Valen's Name: Earth Alliance has imposed a week-long religious festival on Babylon 5, so that all races might share the dominant belief of their civilization and learn something about each other. The human contribution to this festival has been dumped on Commander Sinclair with no guidance, and he's at a loss on how to present "Earth's dominant belief system" to the other races. To…
  • Babylon 5: Infection

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    7 Jul 2014 | 8:01 am
    I am re-watching the entire Babylon 5 television series along with my teenage daughter. I have not seen a single episode since B5 completed its tumultuous run, and Calista was just a few days old when the final episode aired back in 1998. Does J. Michael Straczynski still have the touch? Come along with us and find out. In Valen's Name: Dr. Vance Hendricks, a former professor of Dr. Stephen Franklin's, shows up on Babylon 5 for what is presumably a pleasant reunion with his formal pupil. Down in the station's docking bays, however, Hendricks' henchman Nelson Drake kills a station worker in…
  • Armadillocon 36 schedule

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    11 Jun 2014 | 10:59 am
    Armadillocon 36 is approaching July 25-27, and seeing as how pretty much every other guest has shared his or her schedule via the interwebz, I figured it was high time I do so myself. Fashionably late to the party and all that. Most of my Friday will be consumed with being an instructor in the world-famous Armadillcon Writers Workshop. This writers workshop is a stunningly good deal for aspiring and neo-pro authors, as it puts them in close, intensive writerly-oriented contact with an array of insanely talented and accomplished authors and editors. I say this having actually taught in the…
  • Kaiju Theater: Godzilla Final Wars

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    22 May 2014 | 1:01 pm
    With the new Godzilla film tearing up the screens worldwide, I thought it apropos to revisit the most recent Japanese Godzilla film that preceded this American production. And that film would be 2005's Godzilla Final Wars. Rather than reinvent the wheel, I'm reprinting here a slightly edited version of my original review from 2006 for RevolutionSF. Anyone going into Godzilla: Final Wars expecting the second coming of Destroy All Monsters is going to be disappointed. Despite all the hype about relentless monster battles and kaiju assembled from decades of Toho films, this isn't that movie.
  • Kaiju Theater: Godzilla (2014)

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    17 May 2014 | 1:25 pm
    Back in the summer of 2000, one scorching August afternoon I made my way to the crummiest theater in Temple, Texas, because that was the only place showing Godzilla 2000. The film was the first Japanese Godzilla film distributed to American cinemas since Godzilla 1985 15 years before. Growing up watching all the cheesy Shōwa series films on Saturday afternoon TV "Creature Features" and was jazzed to see a modern incarnation of the Big G. But when I got to the theater, they told me the air conditioning was out, and would not be repaired for the foreseeable future. It was at least 100 degrees…
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    SF Novelists

  • Notes From the Road: The Shared Journey

    David B. Coe
    23 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    I have just returned from a convention and small signing tour to help promote A Plunder of Souls, the third book in my Thieftaker Chronicles (written as D.B. Jackson). I had several good events — a launch party at ConGregate, fun signings with my friends Faith Hunter and A.J. Hartley in Rock Hill, South Carolina and Gastonia, North Carolina, and a couple of great solo signings in Richmond and Raleigh at independent bookstores (Fountain Bookstore and Quail Ridge Books and Music). It was a hectic ten days, but, I think, very productive. I feel that the new novel is off to a good…
  • Wax on, wax off

    Marie Brennan
    16 Jul 2014 | 3:00 am
    In two days, I will get on a series of planes and fly to Okinawa, where I will spend several days doing karate in an un-airconditioned budokan. I’ve been practicing karate for more than five years now, but this is my first time attending this seminar, which is organized by the man who runs my dojo — Oshiro Toshihiro, who is a ninth degree black belt in our unarmed style, eighth degree in the associated weapons style. There will be attendees from all over the world, and let’s just say this is the sort of crowd where having a black belt doesn’t impress anybody. I mean,…
  • More about the “Strong Female Character”…

    Alma Alexander
    5 Jul 2014 | 5:00 am
        What is a “strong female character”? This article has an opinion on it, and discusses how little of it there actually is out there, despite the lip service to the concept. Time after time we get a female character who is interesting,  rounded,  ALIVE, strong…and is then smothered in the male protagonist’s story arc because none of those attributes are considered to be important enough for her to be given her own rock to stand on. A friend of mine  says we don’t need “strong female characters” so much as “female characters with *agency*”, that is to say…
  • My Blog Tour Begins . . . With a Post About Blog Tours

    David B. Coe
    23 Jun 2014 | 5:00 am
    Today I begin officially the Summer 2014 Plunder of Souls Blog Tour, and I thought it might be fun to kick off this year’s tour with a post about how I go about putting one together.  Blog tours can be much more than just a chance to self-promote, although obviously that’s the goal that lies at the root of all this work.  Tours of this kind can be fun, they can be an excuse to try new things and be truly creative not only with our publicity, but also with our books, our characters, and our setting. For those who are not familiar with my Thieftaker Chronicles series, or who have not…
  • What I Learned From My Kickstarter

    Marie Brennan
    16 Jun 2014 | 3:00 am
    1) You will no sooner click “launch my project!” than you will begin receiving a whole new kind of spam. It turns out there’s an entire cottage industry devoted to offering promotional services for hapless Kickstarter newbies. Given that the great fear of every person who runs a campaign is “what if I held a Kickstarter and nobody came?,” I imagine these people make bank. Which is a very great pity, since a lot of campaigns don’t reach their funding goals, meaning the money handed over to these promotional gurus is just frittered away. Unless, of course,…
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  • My Books Become E-books...

    26 Jul 2014 | 4:02 pm
    My books are being converted to e-books by Open Road Media.  I just saw the covers and thought they were pretty great (though can you call something a cover if it doesn't, y'know, cover anything?).  I can't post them until they're okayed, but if you're interested, keep an eye out here.
  • New Review at the B&NR

    24 Jul 2014 | 7:49 am
    I take a look at Paul Park's new novel:
  • New Review at LOCUS ONLINE

    19 Jul 2014 | 7:27 am
    I look at a pair of good story collections:
  • New Review at LOCUS ONLINE

    16 Jul 2014 | 12:48 pm
    I look at some essays on SF:
  • New Review at LOCUS ONLINE

    13 Jul 2014 | 8:13 pm
    The short stories of KJ Parker, examined:
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  • Why I hate Sporking*

    tate hallaway
    28 Jul 2014 | 7:42 am
    *throws up in mouth*This comment was left on one of my fics the other day. Because I'm that kind of person, I re-read the fic in question and tried to determine what on earth I wrote that would have caused that reaction. The fic that elicited this remark wasn't terribly explicit, which is to say there was no actual sex scene a person might have gotten squicked over. There was a conversation between two adults about sex, and I suppose someone could have been upset since one of the characters is discussing these things with her childhood friend who is currently sleeping with her adoptive…
  • Comic Books & The Digital Age

    tate hallaway
    25 Jul 2014 | 9:30 am
    Marvel is giving away some digital comic books for free this week.  There are three titles (Deadpool, Iron Man, and Wolverine) and, for each, you get two issues at no cost (if you follow the links I've provided to the series, be sure to scroll down to the listing of the individual books and you'll see the first two offered for free).  For me, this is a win-win situation because: free.  I have a hard time not enjoying the heck out of anything I don't have to pay for--this was a serious detriment when I used to review movies for a small, local newspaper.So far…
  • Podcast with Bonus Fan Art

    tate hallaway
    23 Jul 2014 | 8:10 am
    I drew one of my favorite Manga character (Renji Abarai) last night because I was in the mood to draw.  If you're ever curious about my other fan / crappy art, you can feel free to check out my deviantART account: (that's my secret fan name.)Likewise, per Wednesday-ness, there is a new podcast up if you're interested in hearing my soon to be 11 year old son and I talking about our favorite weekly manga (and generally being giant goofballs):
  • Tool-using Corvids

    tate hallaway
    22 Jul 2014 | 10:58 am
    The newest installment is up on Wattpad.  In this exciting episode, tool-welding magpies stage a jail break!  Part 17: The Cleverness of BirdsI wrote this latest bit while watching the birds in the feeder just outside my sunroom window.  If there's a lot of repetition of the word "fluttering" it because those noisy little so-and-sos were doing just that.  We have a lot of trees around our house, so there's a been a plethora a squawking babies demanding beak-feeding at the feeder as well.
  • Manga Madness

    tate hallaway
    16 Jul 2014 | 7:16 am
    Mason and I did our thing again.  There is much silliness, accidental poetry, singing, and many, many spoilers.
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    Face of Chaos

  • So What’s New? (catharsis edition)

    19 Jul 2014 | 4:48 pm
    I don’t like to start a story when I don’t know how it’s going to end. That could be the writer in me, but it’s also the wariness of an inner self that doesn’t quite accept the randomness, non-interconnectedness of ordinary life. Although I was never good at keeping this blog updated, I . . . → Read More: So What’s New? (catharsis edition)
  • It’s that time again….

    19 Dec 2013 | 3:01 pm
      Christmas 2013 Wow…that went quick. Time flies by so fast these days; I must be getting old. Wait…I am getting old! This year was the big six-five. I’m on Medicare now. Honestly, I hadn’t looked forward to a birthday so much since I first hit double digits. After . . . → Read More: It’s that time again….
  • At Least It’s Never Dull Around Here

    15 Aug 2013 | 1:29 pm
    I’m a planner. Sometimes it would take an archeologist to find my plans amid the chaos, but they’re there. Every morning I get out of bed with a clear idea of what I want to accomplish before I go horizontal again. On a very good day, The Plan survives and I go to . . . → Read More: At Least It’s Never Dull Around Here
  • Turns out that you *can* go home again

    2 Jun 2013 | 10:48 am
    And that’s what I did over the Memorial Day weekend. (A brief pause while I take a look outside…. No, everything seems intact; an unexpected outbreak of blogging here has not caused a rupture in the space/time continuum.) Since I had such a wonderful time in Boston over the 2012 Memorial Day weekend . . . → Read More: Turns out that you *can* go home again
  • The season between summer and autumn

    20 Sep 2012 | 9:51 pm
    Okay…one could argue that we don’t really have seasons around here. One could argue—and I frequently have—that we have three flavors of summer: Summer’s Coming, Summer’s HERE, and OMG, it’s STILL Summer! Then, in January, the outside temperature drops into the sixties, I open the windows, and pretend that I’m back in Michigan . . . → Read More: The season between summer and autumn
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    Joe Abercrombie

  • US Events, now with SDCC

    Joe Abercrombie
    16 Jul 2014 | 1:02 am
    Greetings American cousins, my new book Half a King should now be available across the nation in hardcover, electronic, and audio formats.  But that’s not all, for on the 22nd July I shall be flying out to be present in your country in my actual person.  The main event is San Diego Comic Con, so I’m afraid there’s a West Coast flavour to my visits this time around but, fear not, I’ll hopefully be fitting in some east coast action early next year with the release of the sequel, Half the World. Here’s the full itinerary, including my panels and signings at Comic…
  • Half a King Published in the US!

    Joe Abercrombie
    15 Jul 2014 | 1:06 am
    Yes, celebrate, my cousins across the pond, for Half a King is published throughout the Land of the Free today.  It’s the Sunday Times no. 3 Hardcover Bestseller that GRRM called, ‘A fast paced tale of betrayal and revenge that grabbed me from page one and refused to let go,’ while Robin Hobb found it, ‘Enthralling. An up-all-night read,’ and Rick Riordan said it had, ‘eye-popping twists and rollicking good action.’  I could go on, but I already have, over here.  Take a look if you fancy seeing a trailer, reading an extract or further reviews or,…
  • Further UK Events

    Joe Abercrombie
    7 Jul 2014 | 1:11 am
    I have returned from a week of events for the UK publication of Half a King, and they went very well, I must say.  On previous tours there have always been a couple of great events but a couple of … less great ones, especially with the daytime events where you’re not talking or reading, just signing.  This time around the rooms were pretty much full throughout, which makes the whole business a pleasure.  You’re largely reliant on the staff of the bookshop to publicise it and get people in the door, a good bookseller really making all the difference, so thanks to all the…
  • Half a King Limited Edition

    Joe Abercrombie
    4 Jul 2014 | 9:24 am
    Subterranean Press have produced some beautiful editions of my six First Law books already, but they’re cooking up something more than a little bit special for Half a King and its sequels, an oversize 7×10 inch hardcover printed in two colours on 80# Finch (that’s really, really good paper to the layman) and with cover and two full colour internal illustrations by Jon McCoy.  Here’s the cover: Much though I like the graphic covers on the standard UK and US editions, it’s always a thrill to see some quality representative artwork for a book as well.  Jon has…
  • Half a King Published in the UK!

    Joe Abercrombie
    3 Jul 2014 | 12:32 am
    I am delighted to announce that the UK edition of Half a King is published today: in Hardcover, Ebook, and unabridged audiobook read by Ben Elliot. “Prince Yarvi has vowed to regain his throne. First he must survive cruelty, chains and the bitter waters of the Shattered Sea. And he must do it all with only one good hand. The deceived will become the deceiver. Born a weakling in the eyes of the world, Yarvi cannot grip a shield or swing an axe, so he must sharpen his mind to a deadly edge. The Betrayed will become the betrayer. Gathering a strange fellowship of the outcast, he finds…
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    Ann Aguirre

  • The Big Mortal Danger Contest

    Ann Aguirre
    3 Jul 2014 | 5:33 pm
    It’s almost release time for MORTAL DANGER, the first book in my new YA trilogy about bullies, beauty, prep school, and revenge. In case you haven’t seen it yet, the cover is absolutely amazing. I love the infinity symbol. In honor of the release of MORTAL DANGER (coming 8/5/14), I’m doing an Infinity Symbol Scavenger Hunt for the entire month of July.  Your mission will be to find and capture (take a picture of) any infinity symbols you can find or create.  The more creative you get, the more points you will earn.  Here’s an example of one I found in Vancouver, Canada. I need…
  • 2B New Adult Cover Reveal

    Ann Aguirre
    16 Jun 2014 | 6:30 am
    We are over the moon about the cover reveal for my 2B Trilogy Series!!! Published by Harlequin HQN, the 2B Trilogy Series is a New Adult Contemporary Romance series made up of 3 titles. I WANT IT THAT WAY is the first full-length novel in the 2B Trilogy and is set to be released August 26th. Book 2, AS LONG AS YOU LOVE ME, is releasing on September 30th, and THE SHAPE OF MY HEART is scheduled to be released on November 25th. You DO NOT want to miss this series!   About I WANT IT THAT WAY: Nadia Conrad has big dreams, and she’s determined to make them come true. But between maintaining…
  • Reviewer Book requests

    Ann Aguirre
    11 Jun 2014 | 1:44 pm
    Would you like to get one of my books for FREE? Then you can already start celebrating like this:   If you do not have a blog, remember that first preference will be given to you if you’ve reviewed books of mine at Amazon or Goodreads. There are also some foreign language titles in here, so be sure to spread the word among all of your bilingual peers.   Here are some of the titles you can request: Silver Mirrors Enclave – SPANISH Language Edition. Horde – SPANISH Language Edition. Horde – FRENCH Language Edition. Let the Requests & Reviews commence!   Note: as it…
  • The Mortal Danger Tour

    Ann Aguirre
    19 May 2014 | 11:56 am
    I’ve been hinting about this for a while and I now have permission to announce it to all of you since everything is locked in. Two times are yet to be confirmed but the dates are definite! I hope you’re as excited as I am about the authors who have been kind enough to help me celebrate Mortal Danger‘s release by signing with me! Are you ready to get dangerous with us, readers?! Tuesday, August 5th Malaprop’s Bookstore 55 Haywood St, Asheville, NC 28801 With: Beth Revis, Alexandra Duncan, Meagan Spooner Time: 7pm Wednesday, August 6th Cover to Cover Bookstore 3560 N High…
  • The Announcement of Awesomeness.

    Ann Aguirre
    11 Mar 2014 | 12:18 pm
    Dance monkey in the house! (You know what that means.) Okay, first… review this post: Riding the Dragon. Are we on the same page regarding what books I’m talking about? Awesome! So basically, we pitched these books a while back. Remember, I said I wouldn’t talk about that process and I didn’t. Mum’s the word! We got multiple offers, but in the end, we sold my new adult romance trilogy to Margo Lipschultz at Harlequin.    I can’t even articulate how much my new editor loves these books! Her enthusiasm (and the excitement of the WHOLE team at HQN) has…
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    Colleen Anderson

  • The Chi Reading Series

    13 Jul 2014 | 7:47 pm
    The truth is I’ve been far too busy to blog of late and so my blog has been suffering badly. My day job became overwhelming and has eaten all of my energy. I’m hoping that will change soon. So, in trying to keep a toe over the threshold and into the world I’d like to mention that I’m still hosting the ChiSeries Vancouver, part of the Chiaroscuro Reading series started in Toronto some five or so years ago by Sandra Kasturi and friends. In Toronto, where the wild things are, and there is an abundance of culture and population, the series has run successfully every month.
  • My Excellent Birthday Adventure

    2 May 2014 | 2:18 pm
    Steampunk often involves gears, bolts and brass. From: Last week, it was my birthday. I’ve lived in Vancouver for years, and in the same neighborhood, yet there are many places on Commercial Drive, or The Drive, that I have never visited. I decided this year that I would choose to wander The Drive and try to hit five places I have yet to enter. I was going to start at noon and have friends join me as they could. My first stop was the Time Travelers’ Bazaar at the Britannia School. Being no more than a five-minute walk from my…
  • Shitty Poetry Month

    24 Apr 2014 | 12:51 pm
    In a send-up of the WWW belt and poetry month, you can vote for the worst poet. In a send-up of all those poetry months, (and of course you know April is National Poetry Month) the folks at Chizine Publications decided to honor “Shitty Poetry Month.” There are many abysmal poems that fill the ether and the void and in fact, probably a lot of them should be voiced instead of being put into books and sent around the world. The vanity presses are famous for taking every piece of drek to mar a monitor and putting them into a lovely hardcover book, that they then charge you, the writer…
  • Book Review: The Warded Man

    28 Mar 2014 | 12:52 pm
    The Warded Man was released in the US in 2009, Harper Voyager imprint The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett came out in 2008 in the UK (as The Painted Man) and 2009 in North America. It’s the first of the Demon Cycle. Yes, there are spoilers. This fantasy takes place in world that once had the age of science but something happened and demons from the core (of the world) materialized every night, bent on destroying humans. Small villages and hamlets use wards on posts and homes that keep the corelings at bay. Everyone knows how to ward, but some are better than ever. If a ward is drawn wrong,…
  • Rainforest Writers Retreat

    25 Feb 2014 | 2:59 pm
    The Lake Quinault Rainforest was mossy and very green. I just returned from five days at the Rainforest Writers Retreat in Lake Quinault, Washington. Lake Quinault is on the Olympic Peninsula, tucked away amongst trees, and why yes, a lake. Patrick Swenson of Fairwood Press organizes these and does two a year, a week apart. I’ve been trying for three years to get in but it always sells out quickly. Last year, I finally got in but was on a waiting list (for about a half a day) because I had registered 24 hours later. Yes, it sells out that quickly and there are many alumni that return…
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    Eleanor Arnason's Web Log

  • Note

    24 Jul 2014 | 7:00 am
    I apologize to people outside the fan community for the long post on the Wiscon brouhaha. It must sound both incomprehensible and strange. I will try to stick to photos of Iceland in the future.
  • Sheep

    24 Jul 2014 | 6:51 am
    From the Guide to Iceland facebook site. Because I don't have enough images on this blog.
  • Writing

    24 Jul 2014 | 6:48 am
    I am currently printing out and proofing fiction: a short story due to be published soon and two out-of-print novels, which are going to come out in ebook editions. After I finish this, I have to get back to the hwarhath short story collection and the sequel to Ring of Swords and half a dozen stories in various stages of completion. I figure I have enough writing work to keep me busy through the rest of the year and into 2015.This is good. I didn't want to spend my retirement years doing volunteer work, after having worked for years for nonprofits. And I didn't want to do nothing and get…
  • Wiscon

    23 Jul 2014 | 4:45 pm
    At this point, the whole world has probably heard about the Wiscon brouhaha. Do I want to go into it? Not much, but here goes.There were two complaints of harassment after the 2013 Wiscon, both involving the same person. The con committee dropped the ball on both. Briefly put, information was not transmitted through the con committee, so committee members were not aware the person had been involved in two alleged instances. The instances were groping one woman and throwing a book at another women. They were not rape, attempted rape, murder or felonious assault. (Well, the book throwing might…
  • Stressful Conversations

    18 Jul 2014 | 2:13 pm
    I took a long nap yesterday afternoon, after more discussion about race on facebook. I really have to stop getting into these conversations. They are stressful and exhausting, and I have nothing to contribute.
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  • The Year's Best Science Fiction 31.

    Neal Asher
    22 Jul 2014 | 1:08 am
     In the new millennium, what secrets lay beyond the far reaches of the universe? What mysteries belie the truths we once held to be self evident? The world of science fiction has long been a porthole into the realities of tomorrow, blurring the line between life and art. Now, in The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirty-First Annual Collection the very best SF authors explore ideas of a new world in the year's best short stories. This venerable collection brings together award winning authors and masters of the field such as Robert Reed, Alastair Reynolds, Damien Broderick, Elizabeth…
  • Aw Nuts

    Neal Asher
    13 Jul 2014 | 2:15 pm
    All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes…
  • A Blasted Heath

    Neal Asher
    5 Jul 2014 | 11:44 am
    I was on the beach the other day when someone said, ‘Is there a fire up there?’ From the mountains, in a long swathe, the sky was stained umber. ‘Probably the power station,’ said someone else, and the matter dropped from my mind (The power station up the coast often spews out a filthy plume – probably when it’s ramping up output to compensate when the wind turbines have stopped ... because it’s too windy).  On a following morning Tim phoned me from Armeni to check if everything was all right at Papagianades – if the fire had reached that far. He then described the…
  • Mr Brick-in-Sock

    Neal Asher
    2 Jul 2014 | 10:16 am
    I’ve had quite an odd day today. Mr Insomnia’s opposite Mr Brick-in-Sock visited me last night and cold-cocked me for eight hours. I then got up and had a large breakfast whereupon he crept up behind me and knocked me out again for a further two hours. I felt absolutely knackered. I guess this was payback for lack of sleep and miles of swimming over the last few weeks. However, by midday I was starting to come around and started working on the copy editor’s notes and queries for Dark Intelligence.  This, for some reason, I found quite difficult, so diverted myself by cleaning my…
  • The Body Demands

    Neal Asher
    26 Jun 2014 | 7:50 pm
    Jolly good, Mr Insomnia has paid a visit again and tipped me out of bed after 3.5 hours sleep, and his visit, combined with a house temperature of 27.5C, means that’s my lot for tonight. I will, therefore, write a waffly blog post. But where to begin? I mentioned a few posts back how after walking a silly distance with the sweat pouring out, my body later responded with painful leg cramps and a subsequent demand for very salty food. Today I had a similar experience with my body registering its objection to how I’ve been treating it. I’ve been walking for miles and swimming for…
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    Dar Kush

  • The Wounded Child

    Steven Barnes
    12 Jul 2014 | 10:35 am 100% agree with what this article says: that behavioral dysfunctions are a form of PTSD, often related to childhood trauma.   This is one reason that the “Morning Ritual” concept incorporates both the “Ancient Child”, heartbeat meditation,   physical motion, and focus.   Why I believe so strongly in dealing with the fear that lies at the base of all negative emotion.  Sigh.I can tell…
  • It's Never Too Late

    Steven Barnes
    10 Jul 2014 | 9:00 am
    In the last 24 hours, I’ve dealt with four different students or clients where the core issue is one of self-love.  Deservement.  The following things were triggers:1) Childhood abuse, both sexual and psychological.   Being touched inappropriately, told they are worthless, used as “things” rather than people before the full development of ego walls.2) Perceived betrayal of childhood ambitions.   Either giving them up, or doing things to achieve them that were in violation of core values.3) Abusive adult relationships.   “Crazymakers” who bond…
  • Stress and the 30-day

    Steven Barnes
    7 Jul 2014 | 8:47 am
    In life, they pay you for how much stress you can take without cracking.  One of the participants in the Challenge mentioned that stress is increasing in his life as he hits his 14th Day.  Some thoughts:1) 100% predictable that you will hit stress points.  Moving from one level to the next in your life requires energy, and piercing any veil of illusion frees it...and some of that energy will spin you.  The better balanced you are, the easier it is to “roll with it” and in fact you can actually measure your balance or lack thereof by the amount of dizziness or stress…
  • Pay Yourself First

    Steven Barnes
    5 Jul 2014 | 9:56 am
    Taking another look at what we’re doing with the “Morning Ritual.”   A question: why the physical motion?  Isn’t it enough to sit quietly, meditate and visualize the results you want?   A few thoughts:1) The “Secret Formula” idea (Goals X Faith X Action X Gratitude = Results) arose from studying one of the core source materials for “The Secret.”   I had friends who loved “The Secret” but I found that while it seemed to work for some of them, for most people it didn’t.  And what was missing was dynamism.   Action.  If…
  • 30-Day Challenge

    Steven Barnes
    1 Jul 2014 | 9:46 am
    So...what are people experiencing with the 30-Day Challenge?    Some of you would be around 10 days in.  Others just starting.Most essential parts:1) Daily exercise: walking, running, calisthenics, Tai Chi, joint mobility, etc. for 10-20 minutes.2) First 25% of time chant: “Every Day In Every Way I’m Getting Better and Better.”3) Second 25% of time chant: “I am SO grateful for X” (past accomplishments or present states)4) Third 25% of time chant:  “I am SO grateful for Y” (future goals)5) Fourth and final 25% chant: “All I need is within me now.”###Once…
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    Max Barry

  • Not Grinning, Not Dying

    30 Jun 2014 | 10:49 pm
    I think I must look like I’m smiling when I’m actually in a lot of pain. Like today, in the middle of a 15km (9.4mi) run, I’m barely keeping it together, so my face is a rictus of agony, my lips pulled back from my teeth in a skull-like grimace, and people running in the other direction are all, “Hi!” and big smiles and eyebrow jiggles. This has been going on for a while. At first I just assumed runners were naturally friendly. But there’s some surprise in their reactions, so I think I must be grinning at them. They are definitely not picking up my real…
  • Fish Dreams

    3 Jun 2014 | 4:27 pm
    A short story. Her mother drops her at five and tells me what she likes to eat now. There are times I look at this woman and feel an echo of affection. But not today. She won’t eat peas any more, apparently. I am to encourage her to eat peas. And she’s had nightmares, says her mother. Two. Nightmares? Bad dreams. It’s common at this age. Dreams about what? Fish, she says. Don’t make a big deal out of it. I say, How would I make a big deal out of it? We talk it out, old wrongs flipping and snapping below the surface, and she turns and walks to the car. Then, at last, I have the girl to…
  • Before Sunrise

    27 Mar 2014 | 4:01 pm
    I’m trying this thing where I wake up very early, like 5am, or, not quite on purpose, 3:43am this morning, make a coffee, and head straight to work. It’s a good feeling, being up and productive that early, once I’ve stopped feeling like I need to throw up. It’s a quiet, distraction-free time; just me, my words, and my pounding Scott & Brendo tunes. The only downside is that after lunch my brain doesn’t work at all. But I use that time for non-creative work like email and writing blogs, so that doesn’t matter so much. This year is all downhill for me. It has…
  • I Hate My Books

    30 Oct 2013 | 9:29 pm
    I’m not sure if it’s like this for other writers, but I have trouble writing something new while I still like my last book. It hangs over me. It makes me feel like I should write that kind of thing again. Maybe that doesn’t sound so bad. But imitating something you think is awesome doesn’t work. It’s much better to imitate something something you think is flawed. Flawed, you’re all, “I loved THIS PART but it would have been SO much better if THIS.” Then you make something new and interesting. Aping something you admire, though, you only get a…
  • Secrets of the Printer's Key

    13 Jul 2013 | 8:00 pm
    That row of numbers on a book’s copyright page is called the printer’s key and tells you whether you’re holding a first edition or fourth or what. First editions look like this: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 … and each time the publisher goes back to the presses for a reprinting, they delete a number. So this: 5 6 7 8 9 10 … is a fifth printing of that edition. This isn’t really a secret. I just thought that was a funny blog title. But reprintings are great, because they mean the book sold more than the publisher’s worst fears. It’s a constant source of…
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    The Battersblog


    Lee Battersby
    28 Jul 2014 | 2:01 am
    Over at Facebook, I was tagged in a meme that required me to list three things that made me grateful, every day for three days.So I thought I'd list them here, too.I'm grateful for my art. It has provided me with friendships, income, travel opportunities, and was the vehicle by which I escaped the soul-destroying depths off despair I was slowly being crushed by while working in the Public Service. I'll never be famous, I'll never be remembered, and I'll never be considered at even the middle of the tree, but my art has been the thing that has kept me from disappearing into the obscure midst…

    Lee Battersby
    28 Jul 2014 | 1:43 am
    25 days? Jesus!Agh, the time has swallowed me up. I'm in the final evening of a two-week vacation from the day job, something I've been in desperate need of for quite some time now, and quite honestly, it was a chance to forget about all my obligations and simply schlep about the house in tracky-dacks, perform some long-awaited renovation tasks, play a metric fucktonne of Baldur's Gate and generally just forget that tomorrow I have to go back to a job I increasingly consider a soul-devouring bucket of hatred and despair.You know, work.So, I could bang on about a whole slew of stuff that…

    Lee Battersby
    2 Jul 2014 | 4:23 pm
    "Oh, my God, Jake. What have we done?"   That's one hell of a hunting dog you've got there, Jake. Where did you pick him up, the lion enclosure? I'm not even going into the logic gap inherent in bringing down Superman with duck shot..... 
  • Review: Gallery of Horror

    Lee Battersby
    29 Jun 2014 | 9:09 pm
    Gallery of Horror by Charles L. GrantMy rating: 3 of 5 starsCollection of very mixed quality, of which only 'Nunc Dimittis by Tanith Lee and 'The Chair' by Dennis Etchison' are of the highest quality, stretching through ordinary efforts by Stephen King, Robert Bloch and other horror luminaries to substandard efforts by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Theodore Sturgeon and T.E.D. Klein. The low-light, as seems to be the case with any anthology in which you find him, is 'Death to the Easter Bunny' by the execrable Alan Ryan. Solid, unexciting efforts by Ramsey Campbell, Gardner Dozois & Jack Dann,…
  • Review: The Man Who Was Thursday

    Lee Battersby
    29 Jun 2014 | 7:25 pm
    The Man Who Was Thursday by G.K. ChestertonMy rating: 5 of 5 starsUtterly delightful, comic crime caper with a philosophical bent that lends the spiralling absurdity a serious underpinning that lifts it above a merely humorous work. Chesterton's mastery of language and deft characterisation makes this a wonderful read. A masterful work by one of the best authors in the English language.View all my reviews
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    throw another bear in the canoe

  • but she brings you only sorrow

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    22 Jul 2014 | 7:30 am
    We made a book! It looks like One-Eyed Jack is available a little early from Amazon (and possibly from your local independent bookstore--check there first, they love to order things for you!) both as Kindle and trade paperback. (Barnes and Noble should be in the game soon, I am assured.) Oh, look! It's on Barnes and Noble!BOOK! Now, off to sign at Fantask in Copenhagen with that boy I like in an hour and a half! Eeeeeeee!
  • through dangers untold and hardships unnumbered--

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    9 Jul 2014 | 2:24 am
    First of all, kudos to Icelandair, which managed to weld a new engine on the plane or something while we were sitting on the tarmac, and there was only a 90 minute delay... and who had meal vouchers and new boarding passes waiting for us, without being fussed at about it, when we landed on the very large and scenic rock 90 minutes later than anticipated.Wait, I might be getting ahead of myself. Scott and I are enroute to Helsinki for Finncon. Mechanical difficulties delayed our flight out (Scott claims he saw Mary Robinette Kowal on the wing of the plane with a gremlin puppet) and so we…
  • in concert with that blood-washed band

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    7 Jul 2014 | 4:51 pm
    The final episode of Shadow Unit is live, and I am having a complicated emotional response.I also have a draft program for LonCon III. And I sold a short story to Asimov's and another one to a Sekrit Projekt. (There will also be at least one signing at the Gollancz table, and I am hoping for a Kaffeklatsch or Literary Beer or reading, but those have not been assigned yet.)A Reader's Life During Peak Short FictionFriday 12:00 - 13:30There are now more speculative short stories published than any one person can hope to read -- or even find. So how do fans of the short-form navigate this…
  • sometimes you've got to put your shoulder to the door

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    24 Jun 2014 | 10:05 am
    4th Street Fantasy is over for another year, and a good time was had by everybody who talked to me about it, at least. Dates for next year have been announced: June 26th-28th, with the usual pre-con party Thursday night and post-con sushi expedition Monday afternoon. This is a week later than usual, because of when we could get the hotel facilities we needed, so we will be a week before CONvergence rather than two weeks before.I've also gotten the CEM of Karen Memory turned around and back to Tor, so all the hard parts of that are done. My only remaining duty is the proofs, and the advance…
  • and wondering if somewhere you're crying too

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    12 Jun 2014 | 1:13 pm
    Look what the cat dragged in!Er, so to speak. Magic City: Recent Spells, edited by Paula Guran!“Paranormal Romance,” Christopher Barzak “The Slaughtered Lamb,” Elizabeth Bear “The Land of Heart’s Desire,” Holly Black “Seeing Eye,” Patricia Briggs “De la Tierra,” Emma Bull “Curses,” Jim Butcher “Dog Boys,” Charles de Lint “Snake Charmer,” Amanda Downum “Street Wizard,” Simon R. Green “-30-,” Caitlín R. Kiernan “Stone Man,” Nancy Kress “Pearlywhite” Mark Laidlaw & John Shirley “In the Stacks,” Scott Lynch “Spellcaster 2.0,” Jonathan…
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    Vicious Imagery

  • Kiwi Music: "Smell of Strangers' by Flip Grater

    25 Jul 2014 | 9:32 am
  • Shaun Evans confirms Series 3 of Endeavour

    24 Jul 2014 | 11:22 pm
    "Have you seen this news, sir?": Roger Allam as Thursday, Shaun Evans as Endeavour ©ITVYesterday brought good news for fans of the ITV drama series Endeavour, as Shaun Evans confirmed during an online video chat that there would be a third series for Detective Constable Morse. Viewers had been left on tenterhooks by series 2, first broadcast back in April, and by the lack of official confirmation the show would return.Interviewed on Spreecast, Evans talked about meeting earlier this week with the Endeavour producers and the show's deviser/writer/executive producer Russell Lewis to discuss…
  • Kiwi music: 'Stranger People' by Doprah

    17 Jul 2014 | 10:57 pm
  • Kiwi music: "...Wintergarden" by Tiny Ruins

    17 Jul 2014 | 3:03 pm
    This video - shot and edited by Neil Finn - features the opening track from Tiny Ruins' cracking album, Brightly Painted One. Me, I think Chainmail Maker should be a single...
  • Good stories just need to find their place

    9 Jul 2014 | 1:10 am
    Nearly six years I applied for the TV team writing workshop at the Lighthouse Arts Centre in Brighton. Led by the inestimable Phil Palmer, it was a scheme that gave writers experience of team writing a putative TV drama series. To apply, you had to pitch a new show. From all the entries, six writers were chosen and I was happyto be one of them.For the scheme we all agreed to write one episode of whichever idea was chosen for development. Unfortunately my pitch was turned down before we all met for the first time. Why? It was a period drama [WWII, to be precise], meaning extra production cost.
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  • Armadillocon looms!

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    24 Jul 2014 | 11:16 am
    Tomorrow beings Armadillocon 36, and although I posted this earlier, it seems appropriate to offer a refresher. Most of my Friday will be devoted to instructing at the Armadillcon Writers Workshop. The impressive lineup this year includes Mario Acevedo, Ted Chiang, Nicky Drayden, Mark Finn, Derek Johnson, Claude Lalumiere, Stina Leicht, Marshall Ryan Maresca, Ian McDonald, Joe McKinney, Alex C. Renwick, Kat Richardson, Dr. Anne-Marie Thomas, Martin Wagner, Jacob Weisman, Martha Wells and Skyler White. Here is the rest of my official ArmadilloCon 36 schedule (* denotes panel…
  • Babylon 5: The Parliament of Dreams

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    22 Jul 2014 | 12:33 pm
    I am re-watching the entire Babylon 5 television series. I had not seen a single episode since B5 completed its tumultuous run. Does J. Michael Straczynski still have the touch? Come along and find out. In Valen's Name: Earth Alliance has imposed a week-long religious festival on Babylon 5, so that all races might share the dominant belief of their civilization and learn something about each other. The human contribution to this festival has been dumped on Commander Sinclair with no guidance, and he's at a loss on how to present "Earth's dominant belief system" to the other races. To…
  • Friday Night Videos

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    18 Jul 2014 | 6:14 am
    "Weird Al" Yankovic has a new album out, which is reason for celebration. Of all the tracks, "Word Crimes" has got to be my favorite, but while the animated video is clever, it's can't quite match the shameless lunacy of "Tacky." Previously on Friday Night Videos... Hall & Oates. Now Playing: R.E.M. Dead Letter OfficeChicken Ranch Central
  • Bettie Page Reveals All

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    15 Jul 2014 | 6:43 am
    Bettie Page Reveals All is a fascinating, if flawed, documentary feature about the world's most iconic pin-up and fetish queen. Page died in 2008 at the age of 85, a famous woman who disappeared at the height of her modelling career to become an enigma. Popularized in part by artist Dave Stevens including a Page-like character in his comic The Rocketeer, Bettie Page's pin-up work saw a resurgence in popularity in the 1980s that continued to grow as the years past. For much of this time, Page was unaware of her return to the spotlight, subsisting on Social Security as she lived a life of…
  • What's Jayme drinking?

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    11 Jul 2014 | 6:16 pm
    Tonight's beer is (take a deep breath) "Harpoon Black Forest Imperial Cherry Chocolate Porter." Whew! That's a mouthful! I'm drinking this beer because... well, upon seeing this in the store, how could I not pick it up? I like good porters. Chocolate and cherry can both be done well. Imperial is more iffy, because often it's just code for "high alcohol, hopped-up IPA." But with luck, those others would balance that element out. I'm not terribly familiar with imperial porters, but my expectation is that it should be pretty malty and roasty, which is right up my alley. The beer poured a a…
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  • Hello From Here

    9 Jul 2014 | 4:43 am
    So far all I’ve managed is to edit down a prologue (openings are delicate and tricksy!) — but having a great time in Lisbon. And loving my little workspace. More photos of this glorious city and our adventures here can be found in this flickr album I'm updating daily. Far too many, admittedly. Shoot now, curate later, I say. Thanks, everyone, for the generous reaction and comments here and there on the last post. Happy it resonated. Now time for one of those decadent vacation lunches, with a little copo of wine.
  • Ten Reasons To Keep Your Eyes On Your Own Paper (or, Go Team Writers)

    2 Jul 2014 | 6:09 pm
    This post wasn't brought on by anything in particular, but I'm about to leave on vacation (Portugal!) and it's something that's been rattling around in my head for a while and also I didn't want to leave the heat death of an imprint post* at the top of the blog in the event I don't post anything from the road. 1. It's hard, I know it's hard, no matter what stage of the writing game you're at, not to feel like everyone is getting more money or attention or acclaim or invites to fancy events than you are. To not feel that you're stuck in neutral…
  • This Crazy Biz We Call Pub

    20 Jun 2014 | 6:16 am
    So, the news broke this morning that Angry Robot is shuttering the Strange Chemistry and Exhibit A imprints, effective immediately. Questions I'm getting: What does this mean for Blackwood and The Woken Gods? I suspect little in the short term, although if you've been procrastinating on buying them, now would be a good time. It also means I can finally answer all the people who ask if there will be a sequel to The Woken Gods. In some ways, this might make it more likely at some distant point down the road (Angry Robot/SC had an option). But I hope it will make plain why I…
  • Mini-Update + Reviewed

    18 Jun 2014 | 8:43 am
    This week is a little on the crazy side, because C is at Syc Hill and my mom is recovering from surgery in town and I am on deadline. There isn't even any time for Secret Shames (that post has some fun comments if you need ideas for truly guilty pleasure-esque things to do when the significant other is away). But the good news is this deadline means (probably) the last of revisions on Secret Project, and I'm also filling out the author questionaire for it, which all means it is closer to being revealed to you and a secret no longer.  Yesterday was a lonnng day spent editing at the…
  • Ten Things I Want From The Future (But Haven't Gotten Yet)

    13 Jun 2014 | 9:39 am
    1. I always wanted a building that was a living dictionary. Something like a less infinite version of Borges' Library of Babel. It would be like the Oxford English Dictionary, but for any language you wanted, and you could stroll through it surrounded by words with strange, delicious definitions, or ask it to direct you through its transculent labyrinthine corridors if you had a destination in mind. (Maybe it would be something like Jose Vasconcelos Library in Mexico City, except, of course, different because living dictionary -- click through to see more photos of that gorgeous space.)…
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    Swan Tower

  • A Year in Pictures – Colosseum Edge

    Swan Tower
    25 Jul 2014 | 8:00 am
    This work by is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. The Colosseum is one of those buildings that’s difficult to photograph, because it’s just too big. Picking one edge of it and focusing on that turned out better than any of my whole-site shots. Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there. This entry was also posted at Comment here or there.
  • A Year in Pictures – Memorial in the Wake

    Swan Tower
    24 Jul 2014 | 4:58 pm
    This work by is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. The next time I take a picture like this one, I’ll have an easier time of it. Hawaii was one of the last trips I took before I was in the habit of using Lightroom to edit my photos, which means I didn’t plan for the editing process in taking the shot. Which means I took about twenty-seven of these shots, trying to get one where the horizon was actually level — that wake you see is from the ferry I was riding in, so I kept being rolled…
  • quick Okinawa update

    Swan Tower
    23 Jul 2014 | 4:22 pm
    I have survived training! Most of it, anyway; maybe all. It’s unclear whether there will be more training on Kouri Island, which is where we’re going for the next couple of days. The schedule originally said yes, but the final version said no, and we’ve been told not to bring bo or sai or even gi. So if we are going to do more karate, it’ll be in swimsuits on the beach. Which would not be a bad thing . . . Apart from the fact that I ended up learning kusanku yesterday (a kata I’m not supposed to know for another year or so, which involves dropping to a one-legged…
  • A Year in Pictures – Ironwork Detail

    Swan Tower
    23 Jul 2014 | 8:01 am
    This work by is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. I think I’d been to Nanzenji before, on my previous trip to Japan, but I wasn’t as much of a photographer then; I didn’t pay attention to small details, and wouldn’t have been able to control my camera to get the short depth of field I have here. It’s nice to know what you’re doing . . . . Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there. This entry was also posted at…
  • A Year in Pictures – Spiral Shell

    Swan Tower
    22 Jul 2014 | 8:06 am
    This work by is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. This was in the amber display at Malbork Castle, though I’m pretty sure it’s an actual shell carved into a spiral, rather than a piece of amber carved to look like a shell carved into a spiral. Either way, though, it’s lovely. Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there. This entry was also posted at Comment here or there.
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  • Will the “true 21st century” bring us back to feudalism?

    David Brin
    26 Jul 2014 | 11:20 am
    Almost exactly a century ago, a lone gunman set in motion events that transformed the world -- ending the lives of millions and shattering empires. With that anniversary in mind, I pondered the clear fact that the last three centuries all seem to have started on their FOURTEENTH YEAR. The brutal arc and themes of the 20th Century - a concave pit that hit its nadir in 1943 - all of it began with shots fired in Sarajevo in the summer of 1914. And 1714 and 1814 were years of similar, transforming portent. See my explanation... along with speculation where we might be heading, if 2014…
  • A War Against Expertise

    David Brin
    23 Jul 2014 | 2:06 pm
    == The real war is against reality ==All right, I keep returning to this recurring theme, but it needs to be hammered... it's about the War on Science… and against all smartypants professions. Forty-three years ago, when Richard Nixon was president, almost forty percent of scientists and twenty-six percent of U.S. journalists (the people in society who interview and question the widest samplings of Americans) called themselves Republicans, only slightly fewer than called themselves Democrats.Today, just 7% of U.S. journalists so identify and less than 6% of U.S.
  • The Moon Landing: 45 Years Later

    David Brin
    20 Jul 2014 | 11:46 am
    Summertime takes me back to 1969, when -- despite national and international traumas that make today's seem petty -- the world did manage to come together over one topic... how glorious that humankind was forging forth into the Final Frontier.Yet now, I share with millions of other boomers a head-scratching perplexity. Why don’t more of today’s youth care about outer space?The easy answer would be to seize upon a simple nostrum -- about each era rejecting the obsessions of the one before it. But then, in that case, why is the very opposite true about popular music? Back in the hippie era,…
  • Media Challenge FAA Drone Ban -- and drones conveying beauty?

    David Brin
    18 Jul 2014 | 9:04 pm
    Tomorrow I will offer comments on the anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.  But first, let's catch up on some important issues.Drones have already been used on several occasions in the US to document the news. Last week, a storm chaser in Arkansas used a drone to record the havoc wrought by a tornado. But the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been very slow to adopt rules for private and corporate drone use and has taken a draconian zero-tolerance policy on its interim ban on almost all such uses. Now, a number of media companies, including The New York Times and The…
  • Brilliant innovators - hopeful signs

    David Brin
    14 Jul 2014 | 3:36 pm
    First a reminder that a number of TED-style or interview talks are up. THE FUTURE IS HERE: Science meets Science Fiction Imagination, Inspiration and Invention was a lavish event last May in Washington DC, presented by the Smithsonian Magazine in collaboration with the UC San Diego's Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination. Here’s a link to my talk: Otherness: will we supply our own new diversity? (Follow along with the slides on Slideshare!)Also “Indignation, Addiction and Hope: Does it help to be “Mad as Hell?” My talk at TEDxUCSD finally offers a public version…
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    Dispatches from Tanganyika

  • If You Were A Man

    Billy Martin
    13 Jul 2014 | 1:02 pm
    I'm due for a testosterone shot today, but I won't be having one because my latest doctor apparently cares more about covering his ass than he does about his patients' well-being. I thought we got along well at my first visit several months ago; he admitted he didn't know much about trans health care, but seemed willing to learn. He also sent me for some pricey blood work, but when you see a new doctor, that's to be expected. I got the blood work, got my T prescription, and was fine until it ran out last month, at which point I called his office to see if I needed to come in or could just get…
  • Shark's Tooth & Sea Glass Pendant

    Billy Martin
    11 Jul 2014 | 5:40 pm
    Here is a popular piece from my shop, a pendant made from green sea glass, a real shark's tooth, and a tiny shark charm. I currently have two of these available, and more (with a slightly different bead) coming soon.It's $24 and comes on a 30" black silk cord, or can go on your own chain. This seems like a good time to post a reminder that all my jewelry comes with a lifetime guarantee; if your piece breaks in the course of normal wear or use, please return it to me and I'll repair it at no cost to you.
  • Strange Memories

    Billy Martin
    10 Jul 2014 | 2:41 am
    Strange memories on this nervous night in Las Vegas. Five years later? Six? It seems like a lifetime, or at least a Main Era -- the kind of peak that never comes again. San Francisco in the middle sixties was a very special time and place to be a part of. Maybe it meant something. Maybe not, in the long run ... but no explanation, no mix of words or music or memories can touch that sense of knowing that you were there and alive in that corner of time and the world. - Hunter S. ThompsonThis quote from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas runs over and over through my head tonight, a near-perfect…
  • Ephemera

    Billy Martin
    4 Jul 2014 | 12:48 pm
    I wrote this on Facebook the other day:"One of the reasons I seldom use Livejournal anymore is that I have become fond of ephemerality. I'd never delete my LJ, as that would be dishonest and destructive, but sometimes I cringe to think all my angst and foolishness and tilting at windmills is still out there for anyone to read. There's a lot to hate about Facebook, but I do like the out-of-sight, out-of-mind quality of it."A love of ephemerality is not necessarily good; taken to extremes, it causes me to live something of a fly-by-night life. Expired driver's licenses and such. It's also…
  • 3D Beatles

    Billy Martin
    13 Apr 2014 | 1:35 pm
    I'm reluctantly selling this gorgeous vintage 3D Beatles pendant necklace. Opening bid is $50.
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    Tobias Buckell

  • My London Worldcon panel schedule

    Tobias Buckell
    18 Jul 2014 | 8:40 pm
    I’m on some amazing panels with amazing human beings at the next Worldcon, in London: Signing Friday 11:00 AM Settling the Alien World Friday 12:00 – 13:30, Capital Suite 9 (ExCeL) Here are three star systems, each with a planet potentially habitable by humans. One is Mars-like — probably lifeless, and needs warming and water before we can live there (or we need to adapt ourselves). One is Earth-like, with similar biochemistry even (score one for panspermia theory), but so far as we can tell, no sentient organisms. And one is Earth-like but with early industrial cities. What…
  • Miami is slowly flooding, and will eventually be our newest Venice

    Tobias Buckell
    13 Jul 2014 | 10:24 am
    I basically assume Miami is the newest Venice at the start of Hurricane Fever due to this: “What makes Miami exceptionally vulnerable to climate change is its unique geology. The city – and its satellite towns and resorts – is built on a dome of porous limestone which is soaking up the rising seawater, slowly filling up the city’s foundations and then bubbling up through drains and pipes. Sewage is being forced upwards and fresh water polluted. Miami’s low topography only adds to these problems. There is little land out here that rises more than six feet above sea level.
  • Reading, Q&A and signing tonight in Toledo, OH at Toledo Public Library, Sanger Branch

    Tobias Buckell
    9 Jul 2014 | 9:43 am
    Hello people of Northwest Ohio and South Michigan. I’ll be giving a reading, answering questions, and signing (and selling) copies of books tonight at the Sanger Branch of the Toledo Public Library (3030 W. Central Ave.). Come on out and say hello!
  • The Del Rey UK edition of Hurricane Fever is also out

    Tobias Buckell
    7 Jul 2014 | 6:28 am
    The Del Rey UK edition of Hurricane Fever launched over the weekend as well. If you’re a reader somewhere in the UK, Ireland, Australia or New Zealand, it should be available! The Del Rey UK site has buy links and more. A storm is coming… When former spy Roo Jones receives an unexpected package from a dead friend, he’s yanked out of a comfortable retirement and is suddenly embroiled in a global conspiracy involving a weapon that could change the face of the world forever. But as one of the largest hurricanes to hit the Caribbean begins to sweep through the area, Roo just may find…
  • Putting a price on carbon does not, actually, bring an economy to a screeching halt

    Tobias Buckell
    6 Jul 2014 | 11:34 am
    The oft-repeated tenet that a carbon tax will cripple the economy is bullshit: “The B.C. carbon tax is built on a simple tenet of human behavior: When the price of something goes up, people will consume less of it. It actually applies to not just gasoline, but to all sources of atmospheric carbon, including natural gas and propane, and is based on how much carbon they emit. For example, since natural gas burns cleaner than gasoline, it is taxed at a lower rate. This ensures emissions are priced in proportion to their impact on the climate. As a result, British Columbia’s per capita…
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    Dark Roast

  • We did it.

    Emma Bull
    7 Jul 2014 | 9:39 am
    Seven years and four seasons of Shadow Unit, the television show that never was, on the WTF Network.I know me; there's no way this would have happened if I'd been doing it by myself. I'm so lucky that when I asked matociquala (Elizabeth Bear) if she wanted to play, she said yes. Bear made the project more imaginative, more interactive, better able to thumb its nose at storytelling's fourth wall. I roped Will Shetterly into the writers' room, but Bear brought Sarah Monette, Amanda Downum, Leah Bobet, Chelsea Polk, and Stephen Shipman in, and gave me the courage to ask Holly Black if she'd…
  • A world of endless wonder(ful)

    Emma Bull
    3 Jul 2014 | 3:11 pm
    I'm at CONvergence.You wish you were here.<3 <3 <3
  • There's a new extra up!

    Emma Bull
    30 Jun 2014 | 9:27 am
    "Afterword." On the WTF Network.
  • Quoted from news source:

    Emma Bull
    26 Jun 2014 | 11:08 am
    "Roads and facilities will reopen after the Thursday afternoon town hall forum in Minnehaha Park, which is closed to the public."You know, that's almost too true to take note of.
  • Stephen Reyes knows what's in your sock drawer.

    Emma Bull
    16 Jun 2014 | 9:02 am
    It's time for another Shadow Unit DVD extra, as we barrel toward the series finale!In which Arthur Tan learns that the stories are true.
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    Stephanie Burgis

  • The return of an old friend, chocolate bribes and reading recs

    Stephanie Burgis
    21 Jul 2014 | 5:39 am
    It's just over 3 weeks until "Courting Magic" will come out, so here's the second teaser! The return of an old friend... :)Did you guys guess that Lucy (from Renegade Magic/A Tangle of Magicks) would return? I hope that at least some readers will be happy to have her back - I loved getting to write her all grown up!I am SO looking forward to sharing this story with you guys! And in perfect timing, we're busy packing for our American trip, so I'm afraid all of my American family members will be forced to scour the manuscript for typos over the next couple of weeks...hmm, maybe I should pack…
  • Milestones, Bagels and More

    Stephanie Burgis
    18 Jul 2014 | 3:05 am
    A year ago from this week, I went to the hospital at 7:30 a.m. in the middle of a heatwave so bad, the operating theater kept getting shut down because the temperatures couldn't be controlled. Patrick and I waited in a stuffy, hot room without a window or a fan throughout a loooooong morning and early afternoon, through delay after delay (as emergency operations took precedence). At 1:30, a doctor finally came in and said, "It's time! Let's do this."At 2:15, I heard Baby X's cry behind the operating curtain, and I knew that he was okay. And immediately everything was worth it.This week Baby X…
  • Starring Kitty: An Interview with Keris Stainton

    Stephanie Burgis
    14 Jul 2014 | 12:15 am
    Today I'm really happy to be hosting Keris Stainton on my blog for an interview about her new MG book, Starring Kitty. On a personal level, Keris is one of the warmest and most generous writers I know, and professionally, she's a guiding force in current UK kids' literature. Not only has she published several YA novels (most recently, Emma Hearts LA), but she teaches YA writing, she advocates for it publicly, and she was one of the two organizers of last year's Authors for the Philippines auction. Here's the blurb for her new book, Starring Kitty: Sometimes the greatest love stories happen…
  • Impossible Attempts, Do-Able Goals, Mountains and Scones and Good News

    Stephanie Burgis
    12 Jul 2014 | 4:05 am
    Oof. It's been a slightly frantic few days between one thing and another - most of them having to do with MrD's school year coming to an end and me trying to do All The Things beforehand! Er, as you might be able to guess...that attempt really isn't working out so well. Oh well! At least, by the time he's finished with school, I really should have a version of "Courting Magic" that's ready for copy-editing/proof-reading, and I've been moving along on my Family Magic rewrite, too.At some point, I keep thinking I should write a whole blog post about the beauty of Do-able Goals (and how hard…
  • Letting Out My Breath

    Stephanie Burgis
    7 Jul 2014 | 3:38 am
    There are some places that don't just make me happy - they make me feel that everything will be okay, no matter what. Oxwich Bay is one of them. It's part of the breathtakingly beautiful Gower Peninsula, here in Wales. Last year, when we visited for the first time, I was hugely pregnant with Baby X and fighting even huge-er amounts of panic. What if something went wrong in the last few weeks (as it had done the last time)? What if, what if, what if - ?Standing on that beach, looking out at the sparkling ocean, I felt peace descend across me like a soft, warm shawl. Everything was going to be…
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    Mabfan's Musings

  • My Week in Facebook, July 20-25, 2014

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    25 Jul 2014 | 12:16 pm
    Highlights from the week...On Tuesday evening, I introduced Sara Slymon, the new Library Director of The Public Library of Brookline, to the Board of Selectmen. The video can be found by clicking the link in the sentence before; it is cued up in the right spot.On Thursday, I posted pictures of Muffin and Squeaker in Batman masks in honor of Batman's 75th anniversary.I also asked if anyone had ever heard of plantar fasciitis; apparently a lot of people I know have. And yes, thank you for your "get well soon" wishes.I posted a picture of me with Massachusetts gubernatorial…
  • My Week in Facebook, July 13-18, 2014

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    18 Jul 2014 | 9:48 am
    This was so successful last week, I've decided to do it again. So what did I do on Facebook this past week?Well, on Sunday, we held the girls' birthday party, which Nomi has written about in The Brookline Parent. I posted some photos of Circus Dynamics, who we engaged for ballon sculptures and face painting.On Monday, I finished reading The Patchwork Girl of Oz to the girls. I've been going through all the original Oz books with them, and we're already up to the eighth book. I think they will be sad when the first 14 are done.On Tuesday, I promoted the Kickstarter for the game…
  • The Brookline Parent: Party in the Park

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    18 Jul 2014 | 9:25 am
    This week in our The Brookline Parent blog, gnomi writes about what it took to plan Muffin and Squeaker's birthday party, which we held just this past Sunday.On July 13th, we celebrated Muffin and Squeaker’s fifth birthday by throwing them a party in a local park. We’ve done park parties every year since they were two years old; this is one of the advantages of summer birthdays. (As someone who has a January birthday, I had to have not only a party date but a party snow date in case of blizzards.) Last year, we had the party at the Waldstein Playground in Brookline, but as…
  • My Week in Facebook - July 6-11, 2014

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    11 Jul 2014 | 8:27 am
    In an attempt to try to be more active on my blog, I will start attempting to summarize things I posted about during the past week on Facebook, and to a lesser extent, Twitter. Also, I'll update about life in general. Let's see if this works….So what was my life like this past week? Well, Muffin and Squeaker were cute all week, but also often obstinate. I've been reading to them at bedtime from "The Patchwork Girl of Oz," and they always insist on another chapter even as they are fighting sleep. This results in them being overtired and then whiny. We're…
  • The Brookline Parent: Rights and Wrongs

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    3 Jul 2014 | 9:06 am
    Our latest The Brookline Parent column, Rights and Wrongs, is a little…political. I tackle the question of what the McCullen v. Coakley decision means to me, and to Brookline.
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    Pushing a Snake Up a Hill

  • Dog Days Sale at Book View Café!

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    25 Jul 2014 | 4:00 pm
    There are a slew of books on sale for half price at BookView Café, in our Dog Days of July sale! Fantasy, science fiction, romance, and more by a bunch of different BVC authors. Includes a couple of mine. From now until July 28! Check it out.  BVC has really well formatted ebooks, most of them previously published by the big houses, all of them DRM-free, and just generally good stuff. If you have any problems, just contact Customer Support. (You'll probably get me.)
  • (Re)Introducing...Down the Stream of Stars!

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    25 Jul 2014 | 1:00 pm
    The second book of the Starstream, Down the Stream of Stars, is back! (Updated) Live at Kindle, Kobo, Nook, iTunes, and Smashwords as I write this. Soon to be at Book View Café. Here's what the blurb writer (that would be me) had to say about it: A great interstellar migration has begun, down the grand, ethereal highway known as the starstream—from the remnant of the Betelgeuse supernova to the center of the Milky Way. Who could have predicted the wonders of the starstream, or the perils it would unleash—including the Throgs, shadowy beings of n-space that seem to understand only death…
  • From a Changeling Star . . . Is Back!

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    9 Jul 2014 | 6:30 am
    If for some odd reason you’d been monitoring my author page at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Apple these last couple of weeks, you would have seen nine of my books disappear from the listings. No, it’s not the battle between Amazon and Hachette. It’s that I've recovered the rights to these books (amicably) from the previous publisher, and I’m preparing my own ebook editions. (Probably paper editions, too, for the ones I have those rights to. But that’s further down the road.)Well, the first one is making its reappearance. From a Changeling Star is live at the Kindle store, in…
  • Is the Frenemy of My Enemy My Frenemy?

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    4 Jul 2014 | 4:55 pm
    I don't know why that just popped into my head. But I thought I should share it and ask if it makes sense. I asked my daughter Julia, and she had no clear answer. Oh well, Happy Birthday, USA!
  • BookBub Strikes Again: Dragon Space!

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    2 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    I’m doing it again! What a wild and crazy guy! Starting today, I have another BookBub promotion running, this time for Dragon Space: A Star Rigger Omnibus — for the low, low price of $1.99 for two complete novels in one volume! Zounds! In case you came in late, or have forgotten, Dragon Space is a boxed set of Dragons in the Stars and Dragon Rigger, two of my favorite books of the star rigger universe. If you don’t already have them, why not invest two thin dollar bills, or maybe two gold Sacajawea dollar coins, on the ebook value of the month? (Do you want your penny change?  Sure…
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    Mark Chadbourn

  • Gone Girl – A Few Thoughts

    28 Jul 2014 | 7:07 am
    Gone Girl has been running high in the bestseller charts for a while now, and there’s a movie on the way from David Fincher, a man who knows a good thing when he sees it.  While I was taking a break down in Cornwall for a week, I nabbed a copy and enjoyed it a lot. In a way, you get two different books here. Luckily, both of them are very good. The first is a suspense thriller with a mounting sense of unease built through the accretion of tiny details and the realisation that two different people are looking at the same events in different ways. The revelations are eked out by the…
  • Coming Soon…A True Story

    24 Jul 2014 | 4:21 am
      Cover by Kealan Patrick Burke. #paranormal #supernatural #Testimony
  • TV Drama Writers Festival 2014

    27 Jun 2014 | 10:07 am
    I’ll be in London for this on July 2nd.  Looks like it’s shaping up to be a great event with some of the leading screenwriters in the UK, TV commissioners and other industry professionals on stage to talk about opportunities and obstacles in the coming twelve months. The festival is organised by the BBC and is open to all screenwriters who’ve had work on air.  Scanning the list of speakers, I see Tony Jordan, Jed Mercurio and Sally Wainwright are there, along with BBC boss Ben Stephenson, and top people from Sky and ITV.  If anyone’s interested, I’ll probably…
  • Game Of Thrones – Changing The World One Beheading At A Time

    23 Jun 2014 | 3:50 am
    I’ve been spending some time talking to the futures consultancy The Future Laboratory and LS:N Global on a project they’re putting together examining how and why Game of Thrones broke out of the fantasy ghetto and into the mainstream – crossing generational and cultural lines across the globe.  The report they’re compiling will be available to their many and varied clients in business and the media, who’ll use it for future-planning and analysis. Some of the things we discussed was how technology is making people more receptive to the fantastic, the future of…
  • Testimony – In Ebook

    11 Jun 2014 | 3:01 am
    Coming in July: Testimony in Ebook format.  Of all the books in my backlist waiting to make the transition to digital, this is the most requested.  More details soon, including the new cover.  “Testimony – the ultimate proof of life after death, or the most terrifying true story ever told?” is the description sitting atop the publisher’s release form.
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    The Mumpsimus

  • The Ideal Literary Life

    Matthew Cheney
    20 Jul 2014 | 9:02 am
    I've never seen the life of the writer Raymond Roussel condensed so marvelously as in David Macey's The Lives of Michel Foucault (Foucault wrote a book on Roussel), where it becomes a kind of perfect literary life: a life of weirdness, alienation, mental illness, addiction, and suffering, all capped with a mysterious death:Enormously rich, [Roussel] travelled the world but rarely left his hotel room or his cabin. He financed the publication of his own writings and the staging of his own plays, which were invariably expensive failures accompanied by riots among the audience. His writings…
  • Snowpiercer: Total Cinema

    Matthew Cheney
    18 Jul 2014 | 9:43 am
     Press Play has now posted my new video essay with a brief accompanying text essay about the great new science fiction action movie political parable satire call to revolution Snowpiercer, directed by Bong Joon-Ho, a filmmaker I am especially enamored of. (Memories of Murder is easily among my favorite movies of the last 15 years and back in 2010 I defended Bong's previous film, Mother, from the criticisms of Richard Brody at the New Yorker.)As a little bit of extra, below the fold here I'll put some thoughts on elements of the remarkable ending of the film...First, for some information…
  • Whose Word Crimes?

    Matthew Cheney
    16 Jul 2014 | 8:42 am
    Yesterday, "Weird Al" Yankovic released a video for his song "Word Crimes", a parody of Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines". Since a lot of people I know are language folks of one sort or another, I saw it flow and re-flow through various streams of social media. But I had qualms.I love Weird Al, and he's been a formative influence on my life, since I started listening to him when I was a kid. (My entire sense of humor could be described by three childhood influences: Weird Al, the Marx Brothers, and Monty Python.) I also think the detestable "Blurred Lines" is ripe for ridicule and attack. And I…
  • Motherless Child by Glen Hirshberg

    Matthew Cheney
    16 Jul 2014 | 6:44 am
    For Strange Horizons, I reviewed Glen Hirshberg's Motherless Child.Motherless Child is a vampire novel that isn't much interested in vampires. Instead, as its title suggests, more than anything else it is a novel about motherhood. Most of the main characters are mothers, the primary themes are ones of parenthood and responsibility, and the basic storyline sends vampirized mothers running away from their children and then fighting against the urge to return, fearing that they will no longer see their kids as offspring but as prey. First published by Earthling Publications in 2012, Motherless…
  • Nadine Gordimer (1923-2014)

    Matthew Cheney
    14 Jul 2014 | 10:07 am
    via The Paris ReviewNadine Gordimer has died at the age of 90, a significant age to reach, and yet, as always with the loss of a major figure (particularly one who stayed active and known) it feels like a robbery. We are greedy, we living people.Writers satiate some of our greed against death by leaving us with their words. Gordimer's oeuvre is large (she began publishing fiction in South Africa in the late 1940s), and her fiction in particular will live long past this moment of her body's death.Because Gordimer was so active in the anti-apartheid struggle, and her writing so often addresses…
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    John Crowley Little and Big

  • No Limit to Paranoia

    John Crowley
    22 Jul 2014 | 4:57 am
    From the NY Times, anent Russian opinions about what happened to the the Malaysian airliner:"One such theory holds that whoever shot down the plane was actually gunning for Mr. Putin, whose plane was over Eastern Europe at the time, returning from Latin America, for example.Another argues that the bodies were actually from the Malaysia Airlines jet that disappeared four months ago — dumped only now to make the separatists look bad.'In Russia, no one thinks that Russia is guilty,' said Olga Kryshtanovskaya, a sociologist who specializes in studying Russia’s political…
  • Thanks

    John Crowley
    28 Jun 2014 | 6:42 am
    Thanks to all for the suggestions and in advance for further/future ones.  Several years' worth of reading there (for me; others swallow books far faster than I do).
  • ANother info request for my good readers

    John Crowley
    24 Jun 2014 | 1:55 pm
    A student at Yale of African descent asks for new or recent SF/F books or authors dealing with diversity, gender politics, race, migration (not necessarily to US) and related issues.  She's read Octafvia Butler and that generation of SF writiers --but what's on now?
  • The future is the new past

    John Crowley
    30 May 2014 | 11:47 am
    "As he unlocked his office door, his superior, Police Inspector Harry Bryant, jug-eared and redheaded, sloppily dressed but wise-eyed and conscious of nearly everything of any importance, hailed him. 'Meet me at nine-thirty in Dave Holden’s office.' Inspector Bryant, as he spoke, flicked briefly through a clipboard of onionskin typed sheets."It's 2019, in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?  I read this and tried to think how I would describe the meaning, derivation, and use of "onionskin typed sheets."   For SF of a certain age, it's the…
  • ANother Another Earth

    John Crowley
    26 May 2014 | 5:30 am
    What was the previous iteration (1970s?) of the idea behind Michael Cahill's "Another Earth" -- a planet in synchronous orbit with earth, and hidden behind the sun -- so exactly the same size and distance that it (somehow...) cancels out and can't be discovered through Newtonian mechanics?
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  • Marvel’s Silent Month

    Peter David
    28 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published March 9, 2001, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1425 And no dialogue. We didn’t need dialogue. We had faces.                                                                               –Norma Desmond                                                                               “Sunset Boulevard” One has to credit new editor-in-chief Joe Quesada: He’s trying. In an industry that’s gone from cyclical to…
  • Seriously, GOP? Seriously?

    Peter David
    25 Jul 2014 | 4:59 pm
    When he was voted into office, tons of people encouraged Obama to level war crime charges against Bush and Cheney. And it would have been totally legitimate. They demonstrably lied to everyone in order to wage war. But Obama said no. He didn’t feel that he should be prosecuting his predecessor. So now the GOP is readying plans to impeach Obama. For issuing fewer executive orders than his predecessors. Jesus Christ. Remember that guy in “Guardians of the Galaxy” who says, “What a bunch of a-holes?” He’s talking about the GOP. PAD
  • Marvel and Retailers: the Slashback program

    Peter David
    25 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published March 2, 2001, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1424 This week and next, we’re going to discuss various Marvel initiatives, ranging from sales to editorial stunts. So kick back and let’s see what’s going on at the house of ideas. This week: MARVEL AND THE RETAILERS Marvel’s relationship with retailers has always been prickly at best (hostile at worst.) One of my earliest recollections when I started in the Marvel sales department years ago was blithely hosting a retailer breakfast at a convention. I figured, y’know, feed them, run the Marvel slide show and talk about…
  • But I Digress flashback: 1971

    Peter David
    21 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published February 23, 2001, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1423–Special “1971″ theme issue I think comic books just cost me a date with Debbie Moss, and that might be the last straw. I can’t believe I’m saying that. I mean, y’know, when I first started reading comics when I was five years old, I felt like I’d found a whole bunch of friends I didn’t even know I was missing. And here I am, ten years later, and suddenly I feel like, y’know, these same fans are dragging me down. Regular readers of this column know that this has been coming on for a while now.
  • BID mailbag: Retcons and Stetcons

    Peter David
    18 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published February 16, 2001, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1422 ’Tennnnn hut! Eyes front, maggots. The following e-mail (I hardly get regular mail anymore) arrived from Commander R.A. Benson, USNR: I am writing you in reference to your column which ran in in the 02 February issue (topic: retcons and “stetcons”), but not in direct comment upon your words. Rather, the photo from Superman #166 which complemented your article has resurrected an issue I’ve had with comics professionals for some time. I understand you had no direct involvement with the panel or the issue…
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    Stephen Dedman

  • "Well, I'm back," he said.

    Stephen Dedman
    20 Jul 2014 | 9:56 pm
    (as they say in the classics). More photos to follow, plus TripAdvisor reviews.
  • "And I realise... I'm going home."

    Stephen Dedman
    18 Jul 2014 | 2:22 pm
    Walked around Prague today, making sure I'd seen everything I wanted to see (apart from the Golem, which is supposedly hidden in the attic of the Old New Synagogue), then back to the hotel to pack.After London and Berlin, I thought I'd take a brief break from museum-hopping - but I rather liked this poster.Another museum I didn't explore, despite having featured it in 'Nanomorphosis'. Prague actually has two torture museums, as well as a Sex Machine museum. which I also skipped. Even the Kepler and Kafka museums didn't tempt me this time around. The Old New Synagogue, reportedly the home of…
  • "You Are Now Leaving West Berlin", or, "Short Trips: Destination Prague"

    Stephen Dedman
    17 Jul 2014 | 3:51 pm
    I arrived in Prague yesterday after spending four days in Berlin. The first two coincided with German victories in the World Cup, and the celebrations continued for the next two and may well still be going on. These celebrations occasionally blocked traffic, but as far as I could see, were entirely civilized, and it was good to see so many people happy in a city with such a grim recent history.I took a guided walking tour on Sunday, which started at the Brandenburg Gate and went via the Holocaust Memorial, Hannah Arendt Street, the site of the Fuhrerbunker (now a carpark, and apparently…
  • Goodbye, Picadilly; farewell, Leicester Square...

    Stephen Dedman
    12 Jul 2014 | 1:37 pm
    On Tuesday, we went to the Bond in Motion exhibition at the London Film Museum, a collection of vehicles, storyboards, and a few other props from James Bond movies. Rowan was somewhat disappointed by the gift shop, because none of the pens exploded (a la the one in GoldenEye), so we went to Covent Garden markets in search of a suitable present for his father. From there, we went to Fortnum & Mason's for ice cream, then to the Covent Garden market, then to a gigantic Waterstones where I nearly lost Rowan, then back to the British Museum. On Wednesday morning, we returned to Forbidden Planet,…
  • The Turn of a Friendly Cardiff

    Stephen Dedman
    7 Jul 2014 | 4:50 pm
    I've visited Cardiff on nearly every trip I've made to the UK, and was happy that the Doctor Who Experience gave me an excuse to do so again. We had an entirely hassle-free trip and arrived at the YHA late in the afternoon, to find that all of the dorms had been named after actors who played the Doctor (we stayed in #3, Pertwee) and the luggage storeroom had a TARDIS motif. We enjoyed dinner at an Indian restaurant nearby, which had been used as a location in the show, and returned to the kitchen to use the wifi and met a group of very friendly young women who were watching Doctor Who…
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    A.M. Dellamonica

  • Tag, I’m It: Writer’s Process Blog Tour

    25 Jul 2014 | 1:31 pm
    In our last exciting episode, the kittens continued to be incredibly adorable, while Caitlin Sweet tagged me and Kelly in the Writer Process Blog Tour. She&;s posted her answers to the questions in that meme here. What Am I Working On? I&;m currently waiting for other people to get back to me on a few things, so in the meantime I&;ve been writing short stories, putting together grant proposals, and looking over old projects. I wrote the first chapter of a mystery novel to see if I liked the voice…
  • Writers on Writing

    23 Jul 2014 | 11:54 am
    Caitlin Sweet has tagged me and Kelly in the Writer Process Blog Tour, and posted her answers to the questions in that meme here. (She was tagged by Peter Watts, incidentally). I will provide answers, but being tagged reminded me that 1) I&;m trying to channel my inner Gomez Addams by finishing old business before jumping into new; and 2) I&;ve been working up a post about the things we writers post to the Internet about writing. These essays tend to fall into a number of categories. Write, Sell, Lather, Rinse, Repeat – How to…
  • I’m a Functional Nerd! (for a Day)

    22 Jul 2014 | 9:00 am
    Miss the sound of my voice? You can hear me on the Functional Nerds podcast today, talking about Penny Dreadful, a Twitter tiff Kelly and I had about whether (film) Tony Stark is a better man than (film) Steve Rogers, and, of course, Child of a Hidden Sea. There are also new reviews on Eloquent Codex and BookNerd. And Julia, at All Things Urban Fantasy, says: And it was just this mix of personal ability and magic that made this book irresistible. While exploring a new world is nothing new for contemporary fantasy, Sophie and her brother Bram do so with zest and personal abilities, not through…
  • Midnight Garden Review of Child of a Hidden Sea

    18 Jul 2014 | 9:00 am
    Kim, over at Midnight Garden, has posted a squeeful 4.5 star review of the novel, and says, about Sophie and Garland Parrish: …I think things are definitely leaning a certain way for future volumes and I am in eager anticipation of that! Parrish is a dreamboat. Handsome, kind, stolid, and giving out smiles but sparingly. You know how I love my stoic captain (yes he is a captain!) types. She also notes, much to my delight, that it’s an adult book full of superfun things we usually reserve for younger readers: pirates, adventure, magic and “moments of grotesque horror.”…
  • Hear “The Cage” and win a copy of my latest book!

    17 Jul 2014 | 9:44 am
    Rocket Talk is presenting an audio version of &;The Cage&; today, and there&;s a Child of a Hidden Sea giveaway if you enter by July 20th. And, over on SF Signal, A.C. Wise has included a mention of &;The Color of Paradox&; in her Women to Read, Where to Start. Share Me Far and Wide:MoreOriginally published at A.M. Dellamonica - Words and Pictures. You can comment here or there.
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    Cory Doctorow's

  • Disrupting elections with Kickstarter-like campaigning apps

    Cory Doctorow
    24 Jul 2014 | 5:22 am
    The UK parliamentary farce over #DRIP showed us that, more than any other industry, the political machine is in dire need of disruption. In my latest Guardian column, How the Kickstarter model could transform UK elections, I suggest that the way that minority politicians could overcome the collective action deadlock of voters being unwilling to "throw away" their ballots on the parties they support, and so holding their nose and voting for the mainstream party they hate least, or not voting at all, by taking a page out of Kickstarter's playbook: Here's how that could work: "Yellow Party!
  • Documentary on the making of the Homeland audiobook with Wil Wheaton

    Cory Doctorow
    18 Jul 2014 | 6:23 am
    Skyboat Media produced this great little documentary about Wil Wheaton's recording sessions for the audiobook of my novel Homeland, in which he had to read out Pi for four minutes straight, read out dialog in which the narrator had a fanboy moment about meeting Wil Wheaton, and many other fun moments.
  • Homeland wins the Prometheus award!

    Cory Doctorow
    13 Jul 2014 | 3:37 pm
    I am delighted and honored to announce that my novel Homeland has won the Prometheus Award for best novel, tying with Ramez Naam's excellent novel Nexus. I am triply honored because this is the third Prometheus I've won -- the other two being for Little Brother and Pirate Cinema. My sincere thanks to the Libertarian Futurist Society; I'll see you at the Worldcon in London this year to accept it!
  • How to save the CBC, making it a global online participatory leader

    Cory Doctorow
    10 Jul 2014 | 10:53 am
    In my latest Guardian column, What Canada's national public broadcaster could learn from the BBC, I look at the punishing cuts to the CBC, and how a shelved (but visionary) BBC plan to field a "creative archive" of shareable and remixable content could help the network lead the country into a networked, participatory future. The CBC, at least, has only limited delusions about the importance of commercialising its archives, especially when that comes at the expense of access to the archives for Canadians. Canada is a young nation, and the CBC has been there with Canadians for about half of the…
  • OECD predicts collapse of capitalism

    Cory Doctorow
    8 Jul 2014 | 4:00 pm
    The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development -- a pro-establishment, rock-ribbed bastion of pro-market thinking -- has released a report predicting a collapse in global economic growth rates, a rise in feudal wealth disparity, collapsing tax revenue and huge, migrating bands of migrant laborers roaming from country to country, seeking crumbs of work. They proscribe "flexible" workforces, austerity, and mass privatization. The report, Policy Challenges for the Next 50 Years , makes a number of assumptions about the impact of automation on skilled jobs in the workforce, the end the…
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    Notes from New Sodom

  • Who Do You Write For?

    Hal Duncan
    26 Jul 2014 | 9:10 am
    One of the questions you get as a writer is "Who do you write for? Do you write for yourself, or do you have an ideal reader in mind, or whatever?" I always felt that was one of those questions that starts with a wrong premise, where you can't answer because its startpoint involves an assumption that just doesn't make sense for you. Like, do I write for myself? Not really. My noggin is just the
  • SCRUFFIANS! Review

    Hal Duncan
    13 May 2014 | 9:47 am
    I fell in love with Hal Duncan's collection, Scruffians! as soon as I read the first story. How can that be? Well, as Gob would say, that one story is the hook. It got me to read the whole book in one sitting.Hal Duncan's work can be dense, non-linear, and highly imaginative along with extraordinary writing skills that always impress. With the addition of his homoerotic fantasy-based Scruffian
  • "The Unfortunate Rake"

    Hal Duncan
    22 Apr 2014 | 9:38 am
  • Scruffians! Deluxe Edition

    Hal Duncan
    14 Apr 2014 | 10:03 am
    "... a prism of queer sexuality, youthful rebellion, and rage against authority, in this thrilling, funny, and moving collection." Publishers Weekly, starred review "... a wickedly entertaining collection of short fiction fantastical and queer in nature—full of “scruffians and scamps and sodomites,” with some pirates and fairies besides. These stories range from comedic romps to lyrical and
  • Rhapsody

    Hal Duncan
    14 Apr 2014 | 9:23 am
    "Rhapsody, though it is Duncan’s first long-form critical work, is a strong and elegant—and sometimes wickedly crass—project, complexly argued and incisive while also managing to remain eminently readable and engaging." Brit Mandelo, "Hal Duncan's Rhapsody is a quicksilver journey through the aesthetic consciousness of one of our most passionate and insightful masters of the form.
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    But Enough About Me!

  • Update on Melanie Rawn’s EXILES 3, The Captal’s Tower

    Kate Elliott
    22 Jul 2014 | 1:30 pm
    Melanie has asked me to post the following, received from her via email.   Yes, I will write Captal’s Tower. I’m very sorry it’s taken so long. My sincere thanks to all of you who have been so patient. I’m currently writing the fifth book in the “Glass Thorns” series, and after that my plan is to get to work on Captal’s Tower. If anything about that plan changes, I’ll post on my website ( Mirrored from I Make Up Worlds.
  • Loncon3 / Worldcon Schedule

    Kate Elliott
    21 Jul 2014 | 2:04 am
    Loncon 3 (London Worldcon) takes place 14 – 18 August 2014. My Philosophy of Con-going:  I attend conventions specifically to meet readers (and to see friends), so don’t be shy: Introduce yourself. I am scheduled for a Signing on Friday (see below), but for signing books/etc also please feel free to come to my Reading, sign up for my Kaffeeklatsch, or track me down after a panel (except when I have back to back events I will try to leave time open post-panel) because I can talk or sign then too I will also be at Fantasycon 2014, 5-7 September, in York, England, a small, informal…
  • Guest Post: D. B. Jackson on Top Ten Things I Do To Help Me Write

    Kate Elliott
    3 Jul 2014 | 12:10 pm
    I would like to welcome the fabulous D.B. Jackson (in 2012 he wrote a fine guest post on “the history that isn’t taught”). Today he tackles a rather different topic about tricks of the writing trade. Top Ten Things I Do To Help Me Write by D. B. Jackson Let me start by saying that I love my job. I get to make up stories for a living. That’s an actual job; I get paid for doing that. It still blows my mind whenever I think of it. I would never dream of complaining about my job in any way. Except to say that sometimes being a writer kind of sucks. Not a lot, mind you. I mean,…
  • THE STREET by Ann Petry (Bestselling Women’s Fiction Book Club) June 2014

    Kate Elliott
    30 Jun 2014 | 8:29 pm
    Please join Justine Larbalestier and myself today, and any day, in discussing women’s bestselling fiction from the 20th century, our ongoing 2014 project.From the Houghton Mifflin 1991 edition:THE STREET tells the poignant, often heartbreaking story of Lutie Johnson, a young black woman, and her spirited struggle to raise her son amid the violence, poverty, and racial dissonance of Harlem in the late 1940s. Originally published in 1946 and hailed by critics as a masterwork, The Street was Ann Petry’s first novel, a beloved bestseller with more than a million copies in print. Its…
  • Bestselling Women’s Fiction Book Club: THE STREET by Ann Petry

    Kate Elliott
    30 Jun 2014 | 12:13 am
    For our next selection we’ll be discussing THE STREET, by Ann Petry, first published in 1946. On Twitter: USA: 30 June 10 pm ET, 7 pm PT, 4 pm HT Australia: 1 July noon ET As per usual I’ll also post our comments here and you are welcome to join the discussion at any time. Mirrored from I Make Up Worlds.
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    Talk in the Shadows

  • Otter on the Move

    18 Jul 2014 | 11:52 am
    Hi y'all I have simply too many blogs going. I know many of you loathe Face Book and I'm not happy with some things about it myself. So I'm leaving LJ and will be posting the same sorts of things (and hopefully more often) on my website's blog. Hope to see you there!
  • Website

    14 Jul 2014 | 9:02 am
    I have finally found time to work on my long neglected new website. The blog now works! Come see me!
  • Signed Books

    12 May 2014 | 8:27 am
    Dear Friends,Sorry to be so slow in sending out the books. I've had a very strange emotional energy around the end of the series, compounded by Life in General. Here are the contest winners who have LJ messaged me their address. Grand Prize: alarisiel333JaolynnaycolenenedvenI am packing them today. Really.
  • Signed books now available!

    7 Apr 2014 | 2:21 pm
    I had a really nice signing at Mysterious Galaxy/a> yesterday and they now have a whole stack of signed books ready for shipping! If you sent in a request for a special inscription before the signing, I also signed those as requested. :)
  • Book Day!

    1 Apr 2014 | 8:04 am
    Lucky #7 Nightrunner book is out!
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    The official home page of author Eric Flint

  • Trial By Fire – Snippet 36

    Drak Bibliophile
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Trial By Fire – Snippet 36 Chapter Sixteen Washington, D.C., Earth Richard heard Elena’s response as a chorus with his own. “Nothing?” Trevor nodded. “Despite the global panic, the World Confederation Council sees our current situation as a standoff. With the Arat Kur controlling orbital space, we can’t fight back effectively. But on the ground, the Arat Kur know they’ve got a tiger by the tail. And as the militarily weaker power, a stalemate is actually to our advantage. So we force them to make the next move.” Downing nodded. “And if…
  • 1636 The Viennese Waltz – Snippet 06

    Drak Bibliophile
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:00 pm
    1636 The Viennese Waltz – Snippet 06 “Only if they’re balanced by down-timers with technical know how,” Judy the Elder said. “One thing we have consistently underestimated is what down-time craftsmen can do.” “And don’t think we aren’t aware of that.” Karl smiled. “Aside from farming and mining, what would you suggest as the best options?” “Upgrades in the manufacture of things you’re already producing should come first. Basically, labor-saving devices for small shops. Stamp presses and steam hammers for…
  • The Savior – Snippet 19

    Drak Bibliophile
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:00 pm
    The Savior – Snippet 19 “No, sir, I don’t.” “To get the cold hell away from my father’s plantation, that’s why.” “Where was that?” “Was? Is. It’s still there. Ingres. In the middle of the province. Best land. They grow wheat and flax. There are whole villages of people who work for my father. People who will always work for my family. Serfdom. That’s the way it’s done in Ingres.” “I know about the plantations.” “From scrolls? From passing through on your way to better things? No, you…
  • Paradigms Lost — Chapter 20

    Drak Bibliophile
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Paradigms Lost — Chapter 20 Chapter 20: An Unusual Consultant Red liquid swirled warmly in the crystal glass, throwing off crimson highlights. Verne Domingo sipped. I swallowed some of my ginger ale, noticing how little I was affected these days by the knowledge that Verne was drinking blood. “Why doesn’t it clot?” I asked idly. “Heparin, my friend. A standard anticoagulant.” “Doesn’t that give you any problems?” His warm chuckle rolled out. “Not in the least, Jason. Nor does anything else within the blood. Disease and toxins cannot…
  • Trial By Fire – Snippet 35

    Drak Bibliophile
    24 Jul 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Trial By Fire – Snippet 35 The spalling, splintering, and outgassing of that hit had imparted a small tumble to the ship. The nose of the crippled carrier began pitching down, the engine decks at its stern rising slightly. As it did, the hull spat out two small white ovals from behind the torus’s rotator coupling: escape pods. Another one came out of the engineering decks– Almost too fast to see, a pair of stars streaked into the picture, one striking the keel just abaft the torus, the other slicing into the engine decks. Blinding light rushed outward, swallowed the ship,…
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    Mad Libs

  • Over the hump. Ish. Or not.

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    24 Jul 2014 | 11:45 am
    As I sit here debating walking to get Starbucks and wishing for a magic Starbucks fairy to deliver my nectar (never happens, oddly), I am considering the next few days. I try not to consider too much farther at this point, as I will have to sit in the corner and sob. At any rate, I’m done with the summer teaching, short of finishing one more paper, doing grades, and turnings said grades in, and meeting again with my thesis students. Instead, today Writing the Rockies begins and tonight I have a reading and tomorrow a panel presentation. Luckily the presentation tomorrow is a variation…
  • Silence of the busy

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    20 Jul 2014 | 9:01 pm
    I’ve been woefully silent here of late. I’ve spent the last week teaching in Colorado. I’ve got another week to go, plus the Writing the Rockies conference. Been sleeping okay, so that’s good, but today I felt quite unwell. No idea why. I had an outbreak of ocular migraine-itis, which is to say, got dizzy spells, some floaters, some moments when my vision totally blurred out, moments when I’m grabbing a wall so I don’t fall down . . . The usual. I don’t take anything for it, so I suffer through. I’m hoping tomorrow is better. I did take a tiny…
  • A snippet from the WIP

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    14 Jul 2014 | 7:36 pm
    I very much doubt this will make the final version of this nameless book. And yet, I love this so much I have to share. It is wrong. So, so, so, wrong: Lately my dreams had been divided equally between erotic images of the two of us together that left my thighs aching and the rest of me more frustrated than an impotent priest on free fuck night at the local brothel, and erotic images of *him with someone else, which left me wanting to skin him alive. I really have mental problems, I swear.   * pronoun added to prevent TMI on the book.   Originally published at
  • getting squared away

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    12 Jul 2014 | 3:46 pm
    I am here in Colorado and working on getting settled into my new position. I have to say, I didn’t fully understand the curriculum here for the MFA in genre writing, but I after learning more, I think it’s the best structure out there for getting people to publishable status. That is, going over the skills and getting the business information you need to get there. Here’s why. First, the first year is devoted to learning a lot of the basics of craft, and also learning a lot about various genres. It’s strictly commercial genres. So no matter what, you’ll get a…
  • getting squared away

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    12 Jul 2014 | 3:42 pm
    I am here in Colorado and working on getting settled into my new position. I have to say, I didn’t fully understand the curriculum here for the MFA in genre writing, but I have to say, I think it’s the best structure out there for getting people to publishable status. That is, going over the skills and getting the business information you need to get there. Here’s why. First, the first year is devoted to learning a lot of the basics of craft, and also learning a lot about various genres. It’s strictly commercial genres. So no matter what, you’ll get a sense of…
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    SF writer Gary Gibson

  • Marauder out in paperback

    Gary Gibson
    4 Jul 2014 | 10:41 pm
    Naturally, having updated people via Twitter and Facebook that something just came out from me, I neglected to also post it here, on my blog. So: the paperback of Marauder, the fourth Shoal book and a standalone set in that universe, is now out. It's a UK publication, but my books have been found not infrequently, state-side, in Barnes and Noble, and there are many small independent bookshops and specialist science fiction and fantasy stores scattered far and wide that undoubtedly have a very good chance of stocking it. In the UK, where it is primarily published, it is my fervent hope that…
  • Some thoughts on rewriting

    Gary Gibson
    25 Jun 2014 | 10:11 pm
    Sometimes, just for the hell of it, especially when I'm working on a second draft in Scrivener, I first save my file then hit the ctrl-z buttons (which delete prior edits one-by-one) and hold them down until what I've written over the past five, ten, thirty minutes disappears. I'm then left either with a blank page, or unedited text. This isn't done out of despair, or concern, but curiosity, because I know that all I need to do, to get back the work I just completed, is to hold down ctrl-cmd-z and all the text or edits repeat themselves before me magically, like a player piano writing its own…
  • Snakes alive

    Gary Gibson
    18 May 2014 | 10:13 pm
    A fun day getting sunburned yesterday in the foothills beyond Taipei, somewhere east of Danshui, which is north of Taipei, while cycling with Troy Parfitt, fellow author, recently returned to these climes. A series of 45 degree slopes and constant reassurances that 'this is definitely the last hill, I swear', did nothing to detract from my suspicion that this was some carefully orchestrated murder plot.Then I nearly decapitated a snake. Damn think looked like a big green leaf rolled up on the road. The road was surrounded on all sides by, essentially, jungle. Troy shouted a warning from…
  • Some Thoughts Regarding the Cancellation of Community

    Gary Gibson
    10 May 2014 | 1:14 am
    Community is one of my favourite things. Or was, until I read the other day it had, at last,  been cancelled. But I've followed the show from the start, and am willing to say that when it was at its best it was quite possibly the best thing on television, period.(As a brief aside, if I had any criticism at all, it was that the show did suffer at times from a very American addiction to 'lessons': characters learned 'lessons' in the course of their adventures in a way that causes almost anyone outside of the USA - and, I suspect, a great many within that country's borders - to throw up in…
  • Upcoming: Extinction Game & Marauder paperback.

    Gary Gibson
    8 May 2014 | 7:45 pm
    Things are quiet here while I blast through the (mostly completed) first draft of the sequel to Extinction Game, which itself isn't due out for another couple of months.People often ask, what's your next book? When's it coming out?And I say, well there's this one, that was out six months ago; but there's also this one, that's coming three months from now. And right now, I'm writing a sequel to that. Also, I should mention that about the same time as the new one comes out in hardback, there'll be a paperback edition of the one out last year...'...and then they get this kind of glassy-eyed look…
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    Where Personal and Professional Life Collide...

  • writer's prayer

    Laura Anne Gilman
    28 Jul 2014 | 5:32 am
    Universe grant me the serenity to admire the bestselling* works of my friends,the courage to write my own stories,and the wisdom to accept that not all will sell the same but that does not mean they should not also be written…*or critically-acclaimed
  • My (tentative) Shamrokon/Eurocon Schedule

    Laura Anne Gilman
    28 Jul 2014 | 4:01 am
    Although sad to miss Loncon/Worldcon, I'm thrilled to be attending Shamrokon, and not just because Dublin's become one of my favorite cities to visit!  So, if you're going to be in town that weekend (22-24 August 2014), and thinking about/planning on attending Shamrokon, this is where you can find me...Adaptations - Live Action To TextFriday 16:00 - 17:00, E. Room 1/2 We usually think of adaptations going from prose to film, but in this panel we celebrate the other adaptations - movies and tv shows that have become books and comics. (Heather Urbanski (M), Laura Anne Gilman,…
  • under the heading of "don't do that"

    Laura Anne Gilman
    26 Jul 2014 | 7:53 am
    1. Don't spam people on Twitter with "buy my book!" direct tweets, most particularly when you've never interacted with them in any way EXCEPT to send spamming tweets.2. If you must spam people, know that they may well go to your tweetstream to see if you've spammed other people (you have) and while there may note that you also rated YOUR OWN BOOK on Goodreads, and gave it 5 stars.At this point, you will be deemed a fuckwit*, and blocked.*not only because you rated your own book, which is beyond tacky, but because you were idiot enough to let that fact get boosted to your twitterstream.
  • *grumble*

    Laura Anne Gilman
    26 Jul 2014 | 3:53 am
    Spent the morning sending takedown notices for my short fiction to a massive pirate site, and informing my novel publishers of same. So that's time I'm not writing.I made a story collection available for cheap, but apparently piracy is more fun? Yeah, why not, you're only hurting...oh wait, you're only hurting the writer, there. And everyone knows we a) make millions and b) live on fairydust and morning dew...
  • Mental Casting Update

    Laura Anne Gilman
    25 Jul 2014 | 5:54 am
    For the four or five of you who've already read drafts of SILVER ON THE ROAD, and anyone who is curious/likes to play the mental casting game...I've not only found my Isobel, I've (much to my everlasting surprise) found the perfect Easterly.Caitlin Sanchez, and Jared Padalecki.  Okay, we'd have to age Jared up a bit, and scruff/weather him up some, but trust me - against my will/original intention, he IS Farron Easterly, if only for his expressions/body language.  I just know in my gut he'd nail it.  And Caitlin definitely nails the…
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  • Squeetus summer book club: Enna Burning, chapter 16

    Shannon Hale
    23 Jul 2014 | 10:04 am
    No one can relate to Enna's actual position at the beginning of this chapter, but I believe we've experienced times when there seemed to be no options. When we were trapped by the choices we'd made and the circumstances we were in. Inside those moments, all can seem impossible. As I hope it seems so now in the story. Impossible. She is truly trapped. The catalyst for change: Isi. Always Isi. She changes nothing except perspective. I think sometimes that's all we need. Not for someone to take away all our problems but just help us turn a bit, see a slightly different way…
  • Squeetus summer book club: Enna Burning, chapter 15

    Shannon Hale
    22 Jul 2014 | 11:45 am
    Sileph and Enna: some are upset by this relationship, but it occurs to me how important stories are, how a distanced reader can see and understand things that a character can't. And in turn, that helps us take a step back from ourselves and see and understand ourselves better. How many people have been in a relationship like Enna's with Sileph but couldn't see it for what it was? "You lying son of a goat." Feel free to use this at need. You have my permission. Someone close to me had a hard time with this book, and it occurred to me that she had never made any big…
  • Squeetus summer book club: Enna Burning, chapter 14

    Shannon Hale
    21 Jul 2014 | 10:38 am
    Sileph: It's hard to talk about this book without giving spoilers for those who haven't finished it yet! But...Sileph, man. Sileph. Looking over one draft's notes (I don't know which draft except that it was in November 2002), I marked to make clearer that Sileph was a foil for Finn. He's an interesting character to me. I genuinely loved writing him, even if I was so uncomfortable putting Enna in his power. Other draft notes: What is going on in this section? Must use it to move forward 3 plot lines:1. grows farther away from Bayern and Isi2. learns to consciously…
  • Squeetus summer book club: Enna Burning, chapter 13

    Shannon Hale
    18 Jul 2014 | 9:50 am
    Chapter 12 was so intense for me, I'm almost shy to read chapter 13. Ay, what authors do to their poor characters... The king's-tongue: Ugh, what a nightmare. I don't enjoy anything that alters my mind or body chemically. I don't drink alcohol and have had very bad experiences any time I've taken prescription pain killers or valium after surgery. One time I took half an Ambien and felt wretched (also I hallucinated--yuck). I despise feeling out of control of my own body. This would be horrible for me, as I know it is for Enna too. Ingridan: When I wrote this…
  • Squeetus summer book club: Enna Burning, chapter 12

    Shannon Hale
    17 Jul 2014 | 9:55 am
    Part 3: Prisoner: Whew! Okay, let's do this. I think this part can be uncomfortable and intense for some, so feel free to hold hands if you need to. Enna's dream: I love weird, fever dreams (if they don't go on too long). I had more fever dreams in Goose Girl early draft with young Ani sick but later cut it. But I think the image of the birds flying and breaking a mirror sky I stole from those cuts. "Cornstalks sprouted ears of fire, and the fields caught it and burned green." I love that. The imperfect heroine: I think it's a lot easier for readers to root for…
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    the m john harrison blog

  • parsing the bedrooms of lily

    22 Jul 2014 | 1:39 am
    Imagine this as a photograph found in the usual collapsing shoebox at the usual car boot sale, you know the score by now. The Dali family’s urge towards meaning is as mistaken as your own. Their attempt to force an arrangement on the world by composing themselves in it collides with your attempt to interpret their attempt: in the ensuing confusion, nothing can be understood. It would help just a little if you didn’t see it as a picture of the Dalis–or, especially, of Dali. Everything else in it would begin to matter. The boat, for instance, which you see as leaving rather…
  • unimmersing

    20 Jul 2014 | 2:44 am
    This from 2008: Larry at OF Blog reproduces–from Darnton’s classic The Great Cat Massacre–the synopsis of a French fairy tale, then adds ruefully: “There’s something about these tales that just seems to be missing from a lot of literature, both mimetic and speculative alike, being published these days…” Perhaps it’s the startling images, concerns human & social, sly, sinewy humour, structures quotidian but supple? The directness of engagement with the reader? That everyone in the contract knows exactly where they stand, & no one makes…
  • graham swift

    19 Jul 2014 | 12:42 am
    Graham Swift is a watcher, a listener, the recorder of our days. “People are life,” one of his characters suggests, but life is also the social structures that context the living of it. The short stories in his third collection often focus, therefore, on occasions. Weddings and divorces, job interviews and funerals, all the puzzled collisions with the bureaucratic infrastructure, all the usual points of connection between the individual and the culture: if they aren’t providing a direct context, they’re never very far in the background… (more)
  • dark matter, Juli Zeh

    18 Jul 2014 | 6:19 am
    Dark Matter, by Juli Zeh: intelligent, wry, entertaining quantum fiction. I enjoyed it at least as much as J Robert Lennon’s Familiar, perhaps more. Causality, coincidence, context. Desktop model of consciousness. Salome. A frozen head. The quantum mechanics of ethics. The moral & psychological pitfalls of Many Worlds. Very eccentric detectives & criminals presented by an author full of love. As much a contraption as a Cornell Woolrich, but put together with equal rigour– & moreover only there because it’s necessary, because it’s the inevitable outcome of,…
  • street view

    15 Jul 2014 | 11:47 am
    Sudden smell of scorched hair & fats. A man in a white shirt stops walking past & looks up into the sunlight. He’s dressed for crown green bowling. He thinks: the wires, always tangled up. Who knows what he saw. At the window you only know what you could smell. The man, dressed in his white shirt & white hat for crown green bowling, will say later that he doesn’t remember anything. He has always felt a deep nostalgia but it is not based on memory. As a result he is forced to look forward like someone with a cricked neck. He is forced to find his memories in front of…
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    Glenn Hauman: View From Above

  • The Luckiest Man On The Face Of The Earth

    Glenn Hauman
    3 Jul 2014 | 9:21 pm
    75 years ago today, one of the most famous speeches in history was given in Yankee Stadium. No full recording of the entire speech exists, so here are some people helping fill in the gaps.
  • My quick link post

    Glenn Hauman
    9 Feb 2014 | 1:09 pm
    Did I mention I’m occasionally cross-posting at I owe my upbringing to the taxpayer. Both of my parents owe essentially their entire lifetime of earnings to the taxpayer. With only brief e ? Well, I am. Add me to your circles there, while I try and figure all these connections out.
  • Re: The cult of justice – from Charlie Stross’s Diary

    Glenn Hauman
    29 Dec 2013 | 12:42 pm
    There’s a set of patterns I keep seeing that are implicit in our news reportage—specifically, the reporting of legal cases. Patterns which seem to me to have a very simple underlying cause but which we take so much for granted that we don’t recognize them explicitly. 1. Justice is a religious cult. 2. Law is holy scripture. 3. Judges are priests. 4. Judicial capital punishment is human sacrifice. via The cult of justice – Charlie’s Diary. My alternate hypothesis from the comments: 1. Communities are shared narratives. 2. Governments are attempts to fix the narratives…
  • A case where donating money won’t fix the problem

    Glenn Hauman
    29 Dec 2013 | 12:23 pm
    But that won’t stop some people from trying to donate anyway.
  • Testing a new site design

    Glenn Hauman
    29 Dec 2013 | 12:16 pm
    Let’s see what this site redesign does. Bear with me– there will be a lot of little posts today as I check on how it’s working, make various asides, and close a lot of open windows on my browser.
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    Something to Talk About

  • ELDERWOOD MANOR by Fulbright & Hawkes from DarkFuse AVAILABLE NOW

    15 Jul 2014 | 12:39 pm
    Things fall apart—Bruce Davenport knows this all too well.On the heels of his wife's death, laid-off and penniless with an eviction notice on the door, the only thing left for him and his four-year-old son Cody is Bruce's childhood home, secluded deep within Ozark forests, haunted by the ghosts of his past.After he receives a strange phone call from his dying mother, who has lived alone in the house for the past 15 years, Bruce reluctantly returns to the estate with his son.But they soon find that something else dwells in the home, in the earth, in the woods. Unseen things are…
  • Sewing Reusable Eco-Friendly Produce Bags

    18 Jun 2014 | 1:37 pm
    Sewing Reusable Eco-Friendly Produce BagsYou’re standing in front of that huge roll of flimsy plastic bags. You’ve licked your fingers, you’ve savagely clawed at the roll, and you finally resort to grabbing the roll and viciously yanking off the stretchy bag…only to discover that in your zeal to acquire the bag – you ripped it. Sigh! And even if you’re lucky enough to get the desired bag off the roll and your produce into the bag – what are the odds you’ll make it all the way home without an apple or onion rolling from the top or bursting the…
  • ELDERWOOD MANOR by Fulbright & Hawkes Available for Pre-Order from DarkFuse

    5 May 2014 | 10:33 am
    Elderwood Manor, our new Fulbright & Hawkes novella due out in July from DarkFuse, is now available for Pre-order. 15% off retail price if you pre-order now and your card will not be charged until July. MANOR by Christopher Fulbright & Angeline HawkesThings fall apart—Bruce Davenport knows this all too well.On the heels of his wife’s death, laid-off and penniless with an eviction notice on the door, the only thing left for him and his four-year-old son Cody is Bruce’s childhood home,…
  • Fulbright & Hawkes & Brian Moreland to appear at The Harbor Culture Series 2014, April 24th 7-9 pm

    14 Apr 2014 | 5:26 pm
  • Make Your Own Household Powdered Cleanser Shaker

    22 Mar 2014 | 4:05 pm
    Make Your Own Household Powdered Cleanser ShakerOne of the hardest things about making your own products from scratch often is the container or mode of delivery not equaling those of manufactured store-bought items. Let’s face it. Most containers, boxes, bottles, etc of store-bought items have nifty details that make cleaning, cooking, or whatever you’re doing, easier and more effective. So, if you’re a do-it-yourselfer, that leaves you with 2 choices: either buy a product with a reusable container that you can use when the initial product is gone  (I have purchased…
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    People are strange, when you're a stranger . . .

  • Play "Misty" for me

    28 Jul 2014 | 4:59 am
    Light mist or drizzle for the newspaper walk, not enough to deter me or even make me turn back for a rain jacket.  Air temperature 67 F, dew point 65, wind south at about 5 mph.  We're supposed to get actual rain later.Maine politics on the world stage (Wife says Bellows isn't anywhere near ugly enough to win a Maine election . . .):
  • The end is nigh . . .

    27 Jul 2014 | 3:44 pm
    That Book View Cafe sale ends tomorrow.  Half off a lotta books, something for every taste!
  • Boring bicycle report

    27 Jul 2014 | 10:01 am
    No new flowers to report, no identifiable roadkill, no not-roadkill.  Got out on the bike, across town to the airport and then upriver a bit and home.  Warm, windy, not comfortable bike weather.  Rain seems to be still straddling the Maine/New Hampshire border.  Looks like I could have taken the longer route I had wanted . . .25.27 miles, 2:15:59
  • Suspicious Sunday

    27 Jul 2014 | 3:53 am
    Air temperature 62 F, dew point 60, scattered clouds, light south wind.  We may or may not get showers later.  I'm trying to decide what kind of bike route best fits my general lack of enthusiasm and the ambivalent weather . . .I am getting too old and tired for the angst of houses, books, and family.  Maybe I need to drop the books.
  • A reminder most readers of this space will not need

    26 Jul 2014 | 11:41 am
    Pirate book sites take money from underpaid, hard-working authors.  They also are prime spots to pick up malware.  One crime deserves the other?
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    Jim C. Hines

  • Writer’s Ink: Nnedi Okorafor

    Jim C. Hines
    26 Jul 2014 | 6:30 pm
    While I was at Detcon1, I noticed how many of my writing buddies had tattoos, and an idea was born… Introducing Writer’s Ink, a feature I’ll be running more or less weekly for a while, until such time as I stop doing it. (How’s that for specific?) I’m going to start with Nnedi Okorafor, who was the YA Guest of Honor at Detcon1. Her novels include Who Fears Death (winner of the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel), Akata Witch (an Best Book of the Year), Zahrah the Windseeker (winner of the Wole Soyinka Prize for African Literature), and The Shadow…
  • Cool Stuff Friday

    Jim C. Hines
    25 Jul 2014 | 6:31 am
    Do you want to build a Friday? “Clouds are Weird, Yo.” Homer’s The Odyssey, in LEGO. Wow… Photos from an elephant orphanage. GoogleX is working on a contact lens that would monitor blood sugar levels. Yes, please! That time the Curiosity Rover took a selfie. Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.
  • Sexual Harassment in Comics and Video Games

    Jim C. Hines
    24 Jul 2014 | 4:54 am
    Related to the ongoing conversation about sexual harassment in SF/F… From Bitch Magazine, survey data about sexual harassment in comics: As a comics editor, writer, and fan myself, I got interested in how often people at conventions experience harassment. So earlier this year I conducted a survey on sexual harassment in comics, receiving 3,600 responses from people that varied from fans to professionals. The survey was distributed and conducted online, with people sharing it via Twitter, Facebook, and especially Tumblr and self-reporting all information. Of the people taking the survey,…
  • WisCon, Harassment, and Rehabilitation

    Jim C. Hines
    22 Jul 2014 | 6:06 pm
    On Friday, WisCon posted a statement that read in part: The WisCon committee has completed our harassment review process with regard to Jim Frenkel, who engaged in two reported violations of WisCon’s general and harassment policies at WisCon 37, in 2013 … WisCon will (provisionally) not allow Jim Frenkel to return for a period of four years (until after WisCon 42 in 2018). This is “provisional” because if Jim Frenkel chooses to present substantive, grounded evidence of behavioral and attitude improvement between the end of WisCon 39 in 2015 and the end of the four-year…
  • Detcon1 Pics

    Jim C. Hines
    21 Jul 2014 | 6:31 am
    Detcon1 was tremendous fun. The volunteers who spent the past two years working to make this happen have a lot to be proud of. I hope to have some thoughts and write-up once my brain wakes up, but in the meantime, I’ve posted some of my photos from the weekend. I was lugging the camera around pretty much everywhere, and while not all of my shots turned out, I’m rather happy with some of them. Folks who were on the other end of my lens — that sounds odd — might note that I haven’t posted a certain set of pics yet. I’m hoping to do something a little…
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    When You Stop Believing in It, It Doesn't Go Away

  • Marvel Vehicles Cover

    Alexander Irvine
    14 Jul 2014 | 4:43 am
    I used to have a Haynes manual for my old Land Cruiser. When I sold the Land Cruiser (nicknamed Igor), I left the manual on the seat for the next guy. Sad day.To fill the void, I got myself this Haynes-style R2D2 shirt a few years later.I still have the shirt, but now I also have the cover of the Marvel Vehicles Owners Workshop Manual...It's out in October, and you should probably have one for the next time you run across an old Battle Van in an abandoned Oscorp warehouse, right?
  • Put on a Hat, Jon Snow

    Alexander Irvine
    14 Jun 2014 | 12:57 pm
      Put on a Hat, Jon Snow Tee Shirts by FrankFrink Check out Got T-Shirts online at zazzle

    Alexander Irvine
    24 May 2014 | 7:16 am
    There are shots so fundamentally stupid that no excuse will justify them. They exemplify lazy thinking, bad storytelling, and a total disregard for the intelligence of the audience. One often sees them even in otherwise enjoyable movies, which just goes to show you that even skilled directors are sometimes thralls to dumb traditions (or dumb executives who think they’re creative). Here are four shots that should never appear in a movie again save as parodies.The long drop to one knee and both hands, with the head down, after which the head is slowly raisedWhy: Let’s start with the physics…
  • Double Scoop of StarCraft

    Alexander Irvine
    11 Apr 2013 | 8:03 pm
    If you're keeping track, today's launch of "Great One" makes two new StarCraft stories in the last two weeks from me (the other one being "Command Performance"). What does the future hold? We'll see...but in the meantime, enjoy these. I love this game and I'm proud to be part of the lore.
  • Avengers Alliance Is One Year Old!

    Alexander Irvine
    1 Mar 2013 | 7:57 am
    Pretty excited to celebrate this birthday. I've actually been working on the game since November of 2010, but it's been live for a year. I'm writing this post at the same table in the same coffee shop (Coffee by Design on Congress Street in Portland, Maine) where I waited for the game to go live a year ago today. Plus ça change, right?If you want to get me a present (you do, right?), you can read one of my books and tell all of your friends about it. May I suggest Buyout or The Narrows to start...? There's also the novelization of Pacific Rim coming out this summer. Thanks!I'm Agent Irvine…
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    Nicholas Kaufmann's Journal

  • Please Dress Modestly

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    25 Jul 2014 | 3:19 pm
    Yesterday I broke the Internet. Today it was my wife’s turn. You see, we live in a pretty diverse neighborhood, Crown Heights, in which there dwells a very large Orthodox Jewish population. The Orthodox communities in New York aren’t exactly known for their tolerance of outsiders. In the past, they have forced women to sit in the back of public city buses, painted over bicycle lanes in the street because they deemed bicycle pants on women to be “immodest,” tried to gender segregate a public park, and so on and so on. Yesterday, a sign mysteriously appeared in our…
  • HWA Votes to Allow Self-Published Works to Qualify for Active Membership

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    24 Jul 2014 | 8:28 am
    It’s been a long time since I’ve written about the Horror Writers Association, or HWA, on my blog. I left the organization years ago, disillusioned with how inward-looking and self-congratulatory it had become, especially when it came to the Bram Stoker Awards, which were increasingly starting to look like an award specifically for the honoring of HWA members. (Even after becoming a partially juried award, some of the results have made me wonder if this isn’t still the case.) I also left disillusioned from all the bad advice the HWA’s members were being given,…
  • Necon 34 Report

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    23 Jul 2014 | 1:02 pm
    Necon 34 was this past weekend. Believe it or not, this was my 14th year attending. I started going in 2000, and only missed one year — 2009 — between then and now. Making this an extra special year was the fact that I was one of the Writer Guests of Honor, along with Amber Benson and Michael Koryta, with my dear friend Jack Haringa as Toastmaster. The Artist Guest of Honor was Erik Mohr, who does all the amazing covers for ChiZine Publications’ books, including my novella Chasing the Dragon. All three of them — Amber, Michael, and Erik – fit right in at…
  • The Scariest Part: A.J. Colucci Talks About SEEDERS

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    22 Jul 2014 | 4:03 am
    Welcome to this week’s installment of The Scariest Part, a recurring feature in which authors, comic book writers, filmmakers, and game creators tell us what scares them in their latest works of horror, dark fantasy, dark science fiction, and suspense. (If you’d like to be featured on The Scariest Part, check out the guidelines here.) My guest is A.J. Colucci, whose latest novel is Seeders. Here is the publisher’s description: George Brookes is a brilliant but reclusive plant biologist living on a remote Canadian island. After his mysterious death, the heirs to his estate arrive on…
  • Where to Find Me at Necon

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    16 Jul 2014 | 11:37 am
    Necon 34 starts tomorrow! I’m very excited. I’ve been going to Necon regularly since 2000, only missing one year between then and now. This year, I’m deeply honored to be one of the Writer Guests of Honor, along with Michael Koryta and Amber Benson. Coincidentally, this year’s Artist Guest of Honor is Erik Mohr, the mad genius behind so many of ChiZine Publications’ amazing book covers, including the gorgeous cover for Chasing the Dragon! I hope he brings a print of it for the art room! Necon announced their programming schedule a while back, which you can see…
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    Dear Sweet Filthy World

  • "People they laugh when they hear you're from my town."

    27 Jul 2014 | 9:30 am
    Buildings are empty like ghettos or ghost-towns.It gives me a chill to think what was inside.I can't seem to fathom the dark of my history.I invented my own... ~ Neko CaseRainy here. Rainy yesterday. It's only 72˚F, but it feels like 69˚F. I made the mistake of leaving the House yesterday; I won't make it again today.There hasn't been much writing. Precious little progress on "The Cats of River Street (1925)." I thought – or I hoped – that I was beyond this dithering. I was clearly wrong.I know that I've written about the decline in productivity I've experienced since 2012. I must have…
  • "You flew away like a little bird. Are you all right?"

    24 Jul 2014 | 9:52 am
    All the things I really like are immoral, illegal, or fattening. ~ Alexander WoolcottAnd here we are on the twenty-fourth day of July, with almost two-thirds of the summer behind us. Slightly more for Rhode Islanders. And I'm trying not to feel panicked. I cannot work or think when I'm panicking. But I feel absolute terror and a sort of claustrophobic sense of suffocation when I think how near we are to the first hints of autumn, which could be as near as three or four weeks. I've spent so much time locked up in this goddamned room, I've hardly seen what little summer we'd had. I need to be…
  • "Where covered wagons and the wings of missing planes float between black fish underneath..."

    23 Jul 2014 | 10:18 am
    Today it will be hot for Providence, 87˚F (heat index 95˚F+), and tomorrow it will be cooler and very stormy. We may have to leave the House today, because it will probably get extremely uncomfortable in here.I clearly cursed myself yesterday by writing, "I'm sleeping too much." Last night, I had the first real bout with insomnia that I've had in months. I might have slept three hours, all broken up. I tossed and turned in our hot bedroom, listening to the drone of all the fans. I dreamed, briefly, of spending time in the company of William Burroughs. I suppose if the insomnia was…
  • Howard Hughes Goes Round and Round (and Round)

    22 Jul 2014 | 9:57 am
    The warm air is coming back. We got low eighties yesterday, and currently it's 84˚F, and supposedly it feels like 91˚F out there. I'm going to guess the humidity must be very high.I didn't write yesterday. I didn't write the day before. I'm wasting time like I'm foolish enough to think maybe I have a lot of the stuff to waste. Toady, I'm going to try to get back to work on "The Cats of River Street (1925)." Great opening scene, then a wall. I suspect my fears of losing our short summer is helping to impede progress on this story.I'm sleeping too much. I feel like I never truly wake up until…
  • "Into an ocean of violence, a world of empty streets."

    20 Jul 2014 | 9:55 am
    Upping my Lamictal yesterday left me feeling exhausted, and I can only hope I do better today. I need energy to face this cold snap in July. Here in Providence, it's currently 72˚F and cloudy. It feels a bit autumnal, that October dreariness that makes me want to stay in bed. Yesterday, I wrote 1,051 words on "The Cats of River Street (1925)," and came up with what I hope is a good opening scene. It reads well. I read it aloud the Spooky. The problem, of course, is finding the story it leads to, and then finding my way to THE END.How can it be the 20th of July? How can the summer be slipping…
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    Writing for the Web

  • How to be a better online reader

    17 Jul 2014 | 11:04 am
    Via The New Yorker, an excellent article by Maria Konnikova: How to Be a Better Online Reader. Excerpt: Certainly, as we turn to online reading, the physiology of the reading process itself shifts; we don’t read the same way online as we do on paper. Anne Mangen, a professor at the National Centre for Reading Education and Research at the University of Stavanger, in Norway, points out that reading is always an interaction between a person and a technology, be it a computer or an e-reader or even a bound book.  Reading “involves factors not usually acknowledged,” she told me. “The…
  • An online Magna Carta: Berners-Lee calls for bill of rights for web

    12 Mar 2014 | 9:19 am
    Via The Guardian: An online Magna Carta: Berners-Lee calls for bill of rights for web. Excerpt: The inventor of the world wide web believes an online "Magna Carta" is needed to protect and enshrine the independence of the medium he created and the rights of its users worldwide.  Sir Tim Berners-Lee told the Guardian the web had come under increasing attack from governments and corporate influence and that new rules were needed to protect the "open, neutral" system.  Speaking exactly 25 years after he wrote the first draft of the first proposal for what would become the…
  • The typefaces of 2001: A Space Odyssey

    3 Feb 2014 | 4:46 pm
    Via the blog Typeset in the Future: 2001: A Space Odyssey. The opening paragraph: 2001: A Space Odyssey – Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 sci-fi masterpiece – seems an appropriate place to start a blog about typography in sci-fi. Amongst other delights, it offers a zero-gravity toilet, emergency resuscitations, exploding bolts, and product placement aplenty. It’s also the Ur Example of Eurostile Bold Extended’s regular appearance in spacecraft user interfaces. This is a witty and very knowledgeable analysis that taught me a lot about a great movie and about typefaces.
  • How fast is your internet?

    14 Jan 2014 | 8:07 pm
    Via Net Index: Household Download Index. the introduction: Based on millions of recent test results from, this index compares and ranks consumer download speeds around the globe. The value is the rolling mean throughput in Mbps over the past 30 days where the mean distance between the client and the server is less than 300 miles. And we learn that Hong Kong, at 70.16 Mbps, whips the rest of us to shreds.Canada ranks #36 at 18.96 Mbps, barely ahead of Malta and Slovakia, and trailing Uruguay (19.34). The US: #30 at 20.33, but even tiny Andorra (#17) beats the Americans with…
  • Against 'Long-Form Journalism'

    12 Dec 2013 | 10:06 am
    Via The Atlantic, James Bennet raises good points for webwriters of all kinds, not just journalists: Against 'Long-Form Journalism'. Excerpt: And, in the digital age, making a virtue of mere length sends the wrong message to writers as well as readers. For when you don’t have to print words on pages and then bundle the pages together and stick postage stamps on the result, you slip some of the constraints that have enforced excellence (and provided polite excuses for editors to trim fat) since Johannes Gutenberg began printing books. You no longer have to make that agonizing…
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    Mindy Klasky - Virtual Cocktails

  • Reclaiming the Trope

    Mindy Klasky
    18 Jul 2014 | 6:48 am
    Look up the word trope in your dictionary.  Go ahead.  I’ll wait. The first definition is probably something along the lines of “a metaphor”.  The second definition is probably something along the lines of “a cliche”.  The second definition likely isn’t tagged “pejorative”, but it should be.  People sneer at tropes, whether they’re talking about movies, books, or any other form of art. And yet. And yet romance novels, especially category romance novels, are built on tropes.  The entire idea of the genre is that we take a relatively…
  • Define: Irony

    Mindy Klasky
    2 Jul 2014 | 6:58 am
    Yesterday, in celebration of the launch of THIRD DEGREE, we went to a Washington Nationals baseball game.  (Okay, it wasn’t really “in celebration of” — it was one of the 20 games we attend on our partial season ticket.  But I was carrying over my celebration to the ballpark.) The stadium was much more crowded than it has been for earlier games.  That’s not because the Rockies were such a great draw; it was because summer is officially here. The row of seats behind us is typically sold to Groupon people — they buy their tickets at half price.  Usually,…
  • Hot, Hot, Hot! (THIRD DEGREE Launches Today!)

    Mindy Klasky
    1 Jul 2014 | 7:39 am
    It’s fitting that we’re at the beginning of a massive heat-wave here in DC, because today is the launch day for one of my hottest books yet!  THIRD DEGREE is live and in stores — Amazon Kindle | Amazon Print | Apple | B&N Nook | Createspace Print | Kobo (More links coming soon!) There are a few things that make a book a Mindy Klasky book — most notably, fun descriptions of food.  And THIRD DEGREE gave me a chance to incorporate my love of cooking (and baking, and eating, etc.) into a hot baseball romance.  Here’s the “back of the book” copy: If…
  • If It Were UP TO ME…

    Mindy Klasky
    30 Jun 2014 | 6:51 am
    One of the great things about writing romance is that you get to hang out with a lot of amazing women (and the very, very, very rare men) who write romance.  The Romance Writers of America is an active writers organization, and a *lot* of its business is done through local chapters.  I’m a member of two of those chapters — the Washington Romance Writers and the Maryland Romance Writers.  Even though the Maryland group meets 1.25 hours from my home, I regularly attend the meetings because I get so much out of them (guidance, support, and great insight into the crazy business…
  • Pssst! Wanna a Free Book?

    Mindy Klasky
    26 Jun 2014 | 6:00 am
    Great news!  PERFECT PITCH (the first volume in the Diamond Brides series) is ***free*** in all e-formats!  For ZERO dollars and ZERO cents, you can read this hot baseball romance on your Kindle, Nook, Kobo, or iThing! Here’s the blurb from the back of the book: Reigning beauty queen Samantha Winger is launching her pet project, a music program for kids. All she has to do is follow the pageant’s rules—no smoking, drinking, or “cavorting” in public. That’s fine, until D.J. Thomas—God’s gift to baseball—throws her a wild pitch.  He slams her in an interview, and the…
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    Mary Robinette Kowal

  • Happy 50th Anniversary, Mom and Dad!

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    25 Jul 2014 | 2:02 pm
    If you wonder what a good marriage looks like, allow me to introduce you to my parents. Mom and Dad met in ballroom dance class. I asked Mom once, what first caught her attention about Dad, and she said, “He was the best dancer.”  It’s something that they’ve continued doing, but if you spend any time with my folks, it’s very clear that this is not the only thing they have in common. I’ve heard both of them describe the other as “my best friend.” Legend has it, that when Sadie Hawkins day rolled around, one of Mom’s co-workers said,…
  • Why I’m spending today swapping out the dialect in my novel

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    21 Jul 2014 | 12:06 pm
    My project today is replacing all the dialogue spoken by Antiguan characters in Of Noble Family with dialogue rewritten by Antiguan and Barbudan author Joanne Hillhouse. Let me explain why I’m doing this. I grew up in the American South — specifically the Piedmont of North Carolina and East Tennessee. The reason I’m being specific about this is that I grew up in a part of the US that has very clear regional differences. People talk about “the Southern accent” as if it’s a homogeneous thing, but it’s really, really not. Accent goes far beyond how the…
  • That military SF audio play I was working on? You can pre-order it now…

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    17 Jul 2014 | 10:59 am
    So I’ve been tweeting some things about how I was working on a military SF. And how I was working on an audioplay. And how I realized that Alan Tudyk would be voicing one of the characters… But I haven’t been able to tell you what it was, until today. There’s a game — a really good game — called Defense Grid. For the second edition of it, Defense Grid 2, I’ve written a “A Matter of Endurance” a new original audio story. It’s part of the pre-purchase awards. Basically, the more people pre-purchase the game, the more rewards unlock. My story?
  • My Favorite Bit: Max Gladstone talks about FULL FATHOM FIVE

    Beth Bernier
    15 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    Max Gladstone is joining us today with his novel Full Fathom Five. Here’s the publisher’s description. On the island of Kavekana, Kai builds gods to order, then hands them to others to maintain. Her creations aren’t conscious and lack their own wills and voices, but they accept sacrifices, and protect their worshippers from other gods—perfect vehicles for Craftsmen and Craftswomen operating in the divinely controlled Old World. When Kai sees one of her creations dying and tries to save her, she’s grievously injured—then sidelined from the business entirely, her…
  • Also, my father definitely does not own a DeLorean.

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    9 Jul 2014 | 2:36 pm
    I’m mean, sure, his mother’s maiden name was Walker which just happens to be the maiden name of Jane Austen’s mother. And yes, my parents live at Robin’s Roost, which is the old Walker farm that just happens to have been in our family since the mid-1800s, but that’s total coincidence. Clearly, my family has a long history. I mean, look at this picture of my Mom! It was taken in the mid-1950s, so clearly there’s no time-travelling happening. That would just be silly. The post Also, my father definitely does not own a DeLorean. appeared first on Mary…
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    Justine Larbalestier

  • Writing Goals: Reduxing the Redux of the Redux

    23 Jul 2014 | 1:42 pm
    This post is a thing that I do every so often. It started in 2006 when I posted my writing goals. I updated it in 2008 with the publication of How To Ditch Your Fairy and then again in 2009 after Liar came out. And then in 2012 in anticipation of the publication of Team Human. These goals of mine are not stuff like Become NYT Bestselling Author or Win Nobel Prize.1 Winning prizes, making bestseller lists, having your books turned into genius TV shows are not things anyone can control,2 but I can control what I write. Not only can I control that, I do control that. So that’s what my…
  • Next on BWFBC: Patricia Highsmith’s Carol/Price of Salt (1952) (updated)

    17 Jul 2014 | 8:33 pm
    The next book for Kate Elliott and mine’s Bestselling Women’s Fiction Book Club is Patricia Highsmith’s Carol. The book was originally published under the title Price of Salt and under the pseudonym Claire Morgan as a Bantam paperback original in 1952. Although it did not sell well as a hardcover it sold nearly a million copies as a Bantam paperback and become a lesbian classic. Highsmith didn’t publicly admit the book was hers until the 1980s. This lovely article by Terry Castle at Slate gives some more context for the book. It’s one of my favourite Highsmith…
  • Guest Post: YA From a Marginalized Young Adult’s Perspective

    11 Jul 2014 | 12:47 am
    A few weeks back @bysshefields was being really smart on twitter about being a young adult excluded from conversations about Young Adult literature. This is something that has often annoyed me, that the go-to “experts” on the genre for the mainstream media are almost never young adults themselves, that we only rarely hear from the people at whom the category is purportedly aimed. I asked Bysshe if she would write a guest post on the subject for my blog and happily she said yes. All the words below are hers: ——– My name is Bysshe and I’m a 19 year old…
  • Melbourne Book Launch + BWFBC

    1 Jul 2014 | 4:32 pm
    I’ll be launching Razorhurst in Melbourne next Tuesday. Details below: Would love to see all you gorgeous Melbournites there! Yay, Batmania! The Sydney launch went marvellously well. Thank you, so much to everyone who attended. I was overwhelmed. Kate Elliott and I held the June book club over on Kate’s blog. We discussed the marvellous The Street by Ann Petry. This month’s book is Patricia Highsmith’s The Taste of Salt/Carol the first lesbian bestseller in the US with [redacted because SPOILER]. We’ll be discussing it on the last Monday (US)/ Tuesday (Australia)…
  • Razorhurst Book Launch This Thursday + Liar in Brasil

    22 Jun 2014 | 6:32 pm
    This Thursday at 6:30PM in the glorious city of Sydney the wonderful Melina Marchetta will be launching my new book, Razorhurst. Here’s hoping you can attend. I have SO MUCH to say about this book. It was some of the most fun research I’ve ever done. Razors! Women mobsters! Walking every street of Surry Hills, Darlinghurst, Kings Cross! Wearing 30s clothes! Studying enforcers!1 In other also super exciting news Liar is now available in Brasil under the title Confesso Que Menti. Here’s what it looks like: Hope my fans in Brasil like it even though it’s very different to…
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    SF and Nonsense

  • Authorial updates

    22 Jul 2014 | 7:11 am
    For those of you who follow my non-blog writing, a few news items:Thinking for a bit ;-)Fools' Experiments, my 2008 technothriller of artificial life and artificial intelligence, has been picked up by Arc Manor for re-release in print and ebook editions. Availability date TBD (I'll update this post once a date is announced).Sometimes less is moreSmall Miracles, my 2009 technothriller of medical nanotech, has likewise been picked up by Arc Manor for re-release in print and ebook editions. Availability date TBD (ditto).The "face" on Mars"Alien AWOLs: The Great Silence," the latest article in my…
  • Woof!

    15 Jul 2014 | 7:05 am
    Well, the Dog Days are not quite upon us (at least as the Romans reckoned these things) ... but I'm there. Being ahead of schedule to procrastinate? Oh, the irony. Oh, the humanity! You're there, too? Then (and Safe For Work) I bring you ... diversion.Let's begin with a non-narcissistic reason (I'm happy to see there is one) to share the passages one has highlighted on a Kindle: the calculation of Hawking Indices. Click through to "The Summer's Most Unread Book Is…" for a definition -- and for evidence that Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty (did you even try?) is perhaps…
  • Spacing out (again)

    8 Jul 2014 | 7:00 am
    Because for space-travel-related posts, "Spacing out" is just too apt of a subject line to retire after a single use. (So would be: "Lost in Space.")A Falcon 9 test launchANYway ... as NASA set its sights on a more caffeinated endeavor (we'll come to that), SpaceX continues to innovate. Their Falcon 9 launcher is impressive enough in its own right. Ditto their Dragon cargo capsule, used three times (so far) for deliveries to the ISS and being upgraded for crew rating. ISS cargo delivery flight CR3, involving that launcher and cargo capsule, also introduced a new element: a soft-landing test…
  • Thinking small -- in a very big way

    1 Jul 2014 | 6:58 am
    I'm fascinated by recent reports from both the grand laboratories and the ivory towers of modern physics. My guess is that regular visitors here will also find these items noteworthy. One atom, "seen" via STMLet's begin with the news that "Bose-Einstein Condensate Made at Room Temperature for First Time." At its most basic, a Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC) is the fifth state of matter, alongside solid, liquid, gas, and plasma.While the familiar four phases of matter (in the foregoing order) represent more and more energetic conditions -- until, in plasma, electrons come unbound from nuclei --…
  • Less than meets the AI

    24 Jun 2014 | 7:17 am
    A mere two weeks ago, the big, breaking news -- apart from the ongoing cascade of geopolitical woes -- was that (in this particular iteration, citing the Washington Post) "A computer just passed the Turing Test in landmark trial."An under-appreciated geniusAlan Turing is perhaps best known for his role in cracking the German military's Enigma crypto system. Turing thereby -- at the very least -- shortened the war against the Nazis and saved many lives. He also established some of the foundational theorems of computer science. As for the subject/headlines at hand, he speculated, way back in…
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    The Days Are Just Packed

  • Paris day 3

    25 Jul 2014 | 12:22 pm
    Fri 7/25 - ParisStep count: 8,022Awake 8:00, found that Kate had already gone out for pastries. Croissant, pain au chocolat, half a kouign amann, and yogurt for breakfast... delicious, but half my calorie budget for the day and I didn't even touch the "incredible thing with the figs." We will walk off some of those calories but we aren't walking THAT much. Walked to Notre Dame with a stop for cappuccino. Took a while to buy our museum passes at the nearby kiosk because of incredibly chatty Spanish tourists ahead of us, oblivious to the growing line behind them. Our first museum, "Crypt…
  • Paris days 1-2

    24 Jul 2014 | 12:52 pm
    We are in Paris! We'll be in Europe for a month all told, a week each in Paris, Normandy, Belgium, and London, returning home after the Worldcon.Tue-Wed 7/22-23. PDX-SEA-FRA-CDG-ParisStep count: 12,002Our trip began with a cab to the airport, rather than the train as planned, because raining. Despite some question as to whether Kate's rollie bag would qualify under United's new rules, it fit in the sizer so we carried it aboard -- mine too -- though we had to a-la-carte them on the puddle-jumper to SEA. Both of us got TSA Pre-Check; it was like going back in time 20 years to the days when all…
  • What is the purpose of short stories?

    17 Jul 2014 | 7:43 am
    I'm off to the Cascade Writers workshop this weekend, where I'll be an instructor. One of the things I'll be doing is giving a talk on "The Purpose and Practice of Short Stories." I have a few ideas, but I thought I'd ask you as well: what do you think is the purpose -- or, indeed, the point -- of writing short stories these days?
  • Quantum questions

    10 Jul 2014 | 10:31 am
    This article provides an explanation I haven't seen before for the difficult-to-wrap-one's-head-around concept that in quantum mechanics it's "observation" that causes the quantum wave form to collapse. "...if you take a picture of an electron, its probability cloud evaporates and leaves it at one exact place. The light that bounced off the electron to hit your camera forced the electron to appear! The resolution to this troubling idea is that if you leave the light off, no photons hit the electron. The watching camera sees nothing, the electron remains ethereal. The electron will still be…
  • I'm the Westercon Fan Guest of Honor in 2016!

    9 Jul 2014 | 2:15 pm
    I'm very pleased to announce that I will be the Fan Guest of Honor at Westercon 69, to be held in Portland, Oregon on the Fourth of July weekend in 2016. The other GoHs are John Scalzi and Charlie Stross. (The committee assures me that there will be at least one additional GoH who is not a balding white male.)I'm totally thrilled about this. I've never been a GoH before!In other news, I recently received my 20-year medallion for attending 20 annual gay square dance conventions. (See photo.)Also, as long as I'm blogging, I urge you to check out the Cosmic Sci-Fi Bundle over at
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    Paul Levinson's Infinite Regress

  • Rectify 2.6: Rare Education

    24 Jul 2014 | 8:31 pm
    An especially tender and psychologically brutal Rectify 2.6 tonight - actually, all the episodes of this show are that way, especially tender and brutal, sometimes psychological, sometimes physical - but it never gets old to say it.It's the small things that are the most exquisite in this series.   Daniel mispronouncing panini a few episodes ago - "palini" - that makes him so endearing.   Tonight it was a few lines from his stepfather that had such resonance.Last week, we saw Ted Sr. coming down too hard on Daniel for ripping up the kitchen.   Daniel's mother correctly gave Ted…
  • The Bridge 2.3: Marco's Dilemma

    24 Jul 2014 | 12:39 pm
    The second season of The Bridge is shaping up as even better than the first, which was excellent.   In episode 2.3 last night, we get a clear view of one of the main reasons:Marco is in an exquisite dilemma.   He's at his best, happiest and most effective, when he's working with the El Paso police, who welcomed him, via Hank, with open arms last night.   Indeed, when the DEA says their not comfortable with a Mexican detective knowing what the DEA is doing - given the corruption south of the border, and the cosy relationship between the police there and the drug lord - Hank…
  • I'll Follow You Down: Excellent Time Travel Movie

    23 Jul 2014 | 12:15 am
    I just saw I'll Follow You Down - an excellent small-scale but large-idea time travel movie, panned by myopic critics, such as in this review last month in the Hollywood Reporter.By small-scale, I mean that the movie concerns one family only - grandfather, daughter and husband, and their son and his girlfriend.  There's no gunplay (except one time), no history of the world at stake, none of the things we've come to expect in time travel on the big screen, and which, by the way, I also very much enjoy.But I'll Follow You Down has something else, more rare in time travel stories.  We…
  • Falling Skies 4.5: Cloudy

    22 Jul 2014 | 12:53 pm
    Well, I took a break from reviewing Falling Skies last week, hoping my opinion of this season would rise, but it hasn't.  Indeed, when the news broke that Falling Skies was renewed by TNT for its fifth and final season a few days ago, I wasn't surprised, given the weak and cliched story lines the series has descended to this season.The biggest action for Tom in episode 4.5 was his falling in with a pair of brothers who seem to be good, but raise his suspicions when they talk about getting booze from a Mormon home (Mormons refrain from drinking).  They soon turn out to be not so…
  • Tyrant 1.4: Close to the Bone

    21 Jul 2014 | 3:35 pm
    Catching up with a short review of Tyrant 1.4, which was quite good.The two major high points of this episode were the cliff-hanger ending, and Molly (Barry's wife) finally saying something important to him and the series.On the cliff-hanger - they're rare in television, even non-existent, unless we're talking about a two-part to-be-continued episode, which we sometimes get at the end of seasons, or every episode of 24, which is itself unique in television.   Ending Tyrant 1.4 with the crisis of the verge of exploding was a very good move.As for Molly, her role as Barry's wife has either…
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    Holly Lisle: Official Author Homepage

  • Thank you for voting on the Suzee Delight Cover Art

    24 Jul 2014 | 1:06 pm
    Tweet The comments, both positive and negative, were tremendously helpful. The raw test for COVER 3 won votes by a massive amount, but as I noted, that was NOT a finished cover. It was a rough draft. My overall changes have addressed the following issues: No text over Suzee’s eyes. Brighter skin tone—she can’t be mistaken for a vampire anymore. Changed art style so she no longer has hard black sketch lines on her face Bigger title with emphasis on SELLING and SUZEE DELIGHT Science fiction background All critical text is readable at the size of 66×100 pixels. MANY comments…
  • Possible Cover Art for THE SELLING OF SUZEE DELIGHT

    23 Jul 2014 | 10:15 am
    Tweet I’ve done three possible covers for SUZEE DELIGHT. Posting them below, and would very much appreciate a vote on the one you like best. COVER #1 COVER #2 COVER #3 Suzee Delight Cover Art Poll Which version of the Suzee Delight cover do you like the best? Cover 1 Cover 2 Cover 3 Other Vote View Results Total Answers 1284 Total Votes 1284  
  • The Selling of Suzee Delight: The Captain’s Dinner

    21 Jul 2014 | 9:42 am
    Tweet Turns out there has been treachery and evil aboard the Longview, with the spy revealed today. I’m happy with what I got—have written more than four thousand words since my last check-in.  I’m at 14,452 words out of a planned 20,000, but the story is once again running a bit long on me. I’ll definitely be able to finish both the first draft and the cover art between now and July 31st, the deadline I set for myself. However, the revision and formatting are going to take longer. I’ll have to do them as I work on HTWAS. Still, as long as I have the first draft…
  • Past the Halfway Point on “The Selling Of Suzee Delight”

    15 Jul 2014 | 9:43 am
    Tweet I wrote 2004 words, and have now completed more than 10,120 words of the story, so I’m past the halfway point. Today Kagen, after finding himself dumped from the Longview, located a strange temporary job in the City of Furies processing protests from famous people regarding the trouble in which Suzee Delight finds herself. And Melie, still Two Gold, uncovered encrypted transmissions to and from the Longview, and tracked them to a passenger room on the ship and to a location on the planet below that has been kept out of the planetary index. So its going well, and I hated to…
  • Snippet #2 from Longview 2: The Selling Of Suzee Delight

    9 Jul 2014 | 8:56 am
    Tweet I was planning on posting a snippet yesterday, but REAL LIFETM intruded, and while I got all my words, I never made it back to the blog. I got all my words again today, so at the the moment, Suzee Delight is sitting at 5888 words out of a planned 20,000. More than 25% done. Here’s the setup. The famous courtesan Suzee Delight is confessing to five murders before Pact Worlds judges, and both legal and illegal datastreams of her confession are going out into space, jumped through the origami points that connect the worlds of Settled Space to an audience of billions. Charlie, who is…
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    Nathalie Mallet's Blog

  • Spamalot

    24 Jul 2014 | 7:03 am
    I went to Spamalot opening night Tuesday. It was a ton of fun. Spamelot incorporates much of the plot-line and iconic jokes from the Monty Python group's hit movie The Holy Grail, which splatters the legends of King Arthur with quirky British humour. You'll see French soldiers taunting Arthur and his merry men, you'll see a confrontation with the Knights who say Ni, there's something about a watery tart who throws a sword, and so many of the signature lines that Monty Python fans love to tell and retell.
  • Happy Canada Day

    1 Jul 2014 | 5:25 am
  • Revision

    25 Apr 2014 | 5:56 am
    My agent just sent me a list of revisions for my new YA novel, Parallel Thief. The list is not overly extensive, but very specific, which I love. Most of it has to do with the characters; they need some work. My protagonist’s relationship to people needs further fleshing out. There are also changes to be brought to the storyline to increase tension and suspense. All good notes.  So with these changes in mind, I start draft 3.  =)
  • Writing a Novel in 12 Stages

    22 Apr 2014 | 5:42 am
    I am presently at stage five, writing the query and synopsis. I don’t need the query part, because I already have an agent. But I still need a synopsis. So this is what I’m working on this week. The blurb is done though. You never know when you’re going to need a 30 second elevator pitch. Best be prepared. =)
  • Happy Easter

    20 Apr 2014 | 6:36 am
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    Nick Mamatas

  • Self-publishing and writer organizations

    25 Jul 2014 | 9:38 am
    The Horror Writers Association (HWA) has decided to allow self-publishing as a criterion for its membership, and the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) is currently contemplating the same. Membership in both groups had previously been means-tested only to allow membership to writers who sold a certain number of short pieces at a certain pay rate, or a novel for an advance of a couple thousand dollars. (There are also other kinds of membership for publishing professionals, but that's not relevant here.) Much anxiety and discussion has ensued, though of course there has been…
  • Next up, Telegenic Dead Authors

    23 Jul 2014 | 11:02 am
    The Amazon/Hachette conflict continues, and Amazon needs to get some better PR people:When PW contacted Amazon about the conversation, a spokesperson for the company said: "You have to look at the parent company--Lagardère Group--rather than just the Hachette division. Kindle books are only 1% of Lagardère Group's sales. They can afford it, and should stop using their authors as human shields."Human shields! Two notable elements here:1. Amazon has adopted the language of military propaganda.2. In doing so, Amazon admits implicitly that it considers itself to be a. at war with Hachette and…
  • Monday Quick Notes

    21 Jul 2014 | 9:48 am
    I attended a rally and march in solidarity with the people of the Gaza Strip yesterday, and tweeted some photos. Here they are, via Storyify, for your viewing convenience.My next online writing class starts in a few weeks. Sign up if you'd like to know why you keep getting rejection letters! (We're heavily oriented toward writing for publication.)And now, the best new one-star reader review ever: click here.Finally, some time ago my 2007 novel Under My Roof was optioned by the independent production company Tallgrass Pictures, which is known primarily for television commercials.
  • This Should Be Fun...

    18 Jul 2014 | 8:29 am
    From amazon's new subscription service:"KDP Select authors and publishers will earn a share of the KDP Select global fund each time a customer accesses their book from Kindle Unlimited and reads more than 10% of their book-–about the length of reading the free sample available in Kindle books-–as opposed to a payout when the book is simply downloaded. Only the first time a customer reads a book past 10% will be counted."Given the number of cheap/free downloads that never get looked at again, it'll be interesting to see how self-published Kindle superstars react when their monthly checks…
  • Million Writers Award—Editorial and Personal Picks

    14 Jul 2014 | 9:31 am
    The Million Writers Award for stories first published online, despite sometimes becoming biggest-blog-wins (see rule #8), is one of the better things to happen to the lit-o-sphere. I was a judge a few years ago and had fun, and later withdrew a story of my own—"Summon Bind Banish"—that had been mistakenly nominated to some minor fussing. Clearly, I should have just kept it on the list and made a bigger fuss about censorship and victimhood and the enemies that surround me! Then I could have possibly won some sweet-sweet prize money.Speaking of, Molly and I put our heads together and these…
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    Not A Blog

  • Master Class

    21 Jul 2014 | 2:47 pm
    For those of you who were unable to travel to Switzerland for NIFFF, Livestream has uploaded my "Master Class" interview and Q&A.NIFFF was great fun, all in all, though they kept me so busy that I was only able to see one film of the ninety-plus shown at the festival.  Most of the interviews covered the same old ground... but the masterclass got into some areas a bit more substantially, and you may find it interesting.I had fun doing it, anyway.If you would like to check it out, go to:
  • Comicon Is Coming

    21 Jul 2014 | 9:43 am
    It seems like I just got back from France and Switzerland... maybe because I just did... and now San Diego Comicon is on top of us.I'll be there for the whole weekend, doing promotion for HBO, Bantam Spectra, and my various other publishers.  Flying in Wednesday, departing on the following Monday, so if you're going to comicon, you should have plenty of chances to see me, hear me, and get me to scrawl illegibly on your book, graphic novel, Blu-Rays, or body parts.My schedule:Wednesday evening, 6pm to 7pm, I will be doing a signing at the AVATAR PRESS booth, autographing copies of…
  • Six Days Left

    19 Jul 2014 | 10:46 am
    Only six days remain on my big Prizeo fundraiser on behalf of the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary and the Food Depot of Santa Fe.  We've raised some $459,000 as I write, but we're still short of our half-million dollar goal.  So if you have some spare change and/or folding green in your pocket, come help push us over the top with a late surge! of the special incentive prizes have been snapped up... but some remain.You can still book a brunch with me at San Diego Comicon, a week from…
  • Martians and Women and Rogues, Oh My

    17 Jul 2014 | 4:05 pm
    Hey, lots of good news on the anthology front while I was traipsing around France and Switzerland these past couple of weeks.OLD MARS led the way, winning the annual Locus Award as the Best Anthology of 2013:You can check out the details at    And congratulations to my pals Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck as well.  As James S.A. Corey, they won the Locus Award for Best SF Novel of the year.  (Would that ABADDON'S GATE was on the Hugo ballot as well).  And of course, congrats to my co-editor…
  • Home Again

    15 Jul 2014 | 4:10 pm
    Got home late (LATE) last night from Switzerland.  The journey back from Neuchatel, via Zurich and O'Hare, ended up taking us twenty four from when we took to when we toppled into bed again, thanks to a long layover and even longer delays in Chicago, so Raya and I were both zombies when we arrived.  The flight on Swissair from Zurich was a delight.  The flight from Chicago to Albuquerque on American Eagle was a nightmare.  I really hate these crappy little planes that United and American have put on their domestic routes.Anyway... very tired now, and of course a…
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    Counting Heads

  • Sign up for novel updates

    12 Jul 2014 | 2:16 pm
    It’s obvious to anyone looking at my posts on this blog--I stink at social media. Months or years go by without an update. I guess I’m just not that into being social. But I still want to keep my readers informed about my current novel in progress and other writing projects. So, I’m reviving a mailing list from the days of my first novel. If you’re a reader of mine, I encourage you to sign up. I’ll be sending out only a few Novel Updates a year. No spam, no fuss. Maybe a few free giveaways. Also, this is the way you can reach me if you want to start a conversation about my work.
  • Alaska Sampler 2014 is free for the taking!

    7 Jun 2014 | 2:47 pm
    This is a new ebook project I’ve started with fellow-Alaskan writer, Deb Vanasse. We put together writings from ten of Alaska’s finest authors to show off the place we love, without all the reality-TV-hype nonsense. Pieces range from Biography, Fiction, and Memoir to Adventure and Humor. Best of all, it’s free. Go here to download.Now, back to my non-social mode.
  • Join My New Novel Update Email List

    19 Mar 2014 | 5:07 pm
    It’s obvious to anyone looking at my posts on this blog--I stink at social media. Months or years go by without an update. I guess I’m just not that into being social. But I still want to keep my readers informed about my current novel in progress and other writing projects. So, I’m reviving a mailing list from the days of my first novel. If you’re a reader of mine, I encourage you to sign up. I’ll be sending out only a few Novel Updates a year. No spam, no fuss. Maybe a few free giveaways.
  • Room for one more

    19 Jan 2013 | 4:02 pm
    The Science Fiction Apprenticeship I'm teaching in February through 49 Writers has room for one more writer. If you'd like me to work one-on-one with you on a short story of yours, this is your chance. No need to be an Alaskan resident.
  • Ebook Production Workshop

    31 Dec 2012 | 11:54 am
    My six-hour UAF WINTERmester workshop in Ebook Production, which begins next week, still needs a couple of more students to sign up or it will probably be canceled. If you've been thinking about self-publishing your book on Amazon's Kindle or B&N's Nook but aren't sure how to go about it, this is the course for you. On the evenings of January 7, 9, and 11 we will cover the basics of ebook production: file conversion, cover design, proofing, and uploading to Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Even if you think you’d prefer to hire a conversion service to do the conversion work for you, this…
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  • Recent Good Reads

    24 Jul 2014 | 7:12 am
    Here are a few books I've read and enjoyed recently. I would stay and chat, but I'd prefer to be reading more books. I've become very slow since getting married. You know, these people who live with you demand, like, conversations, and housework, and shared activities. I can't just turtle into the bedroom and shut out the world!There was this one time on my blog I walked around the festering cesspit of my apartment at the time and snapped photos at how gross it was because I was working full-time and writing and reading a lot. Let's just say, it may be a good thing I've slowed down. ;)
  • Nine too many

    9 Jul 2014 | 5:55 pm
    I have non copies of We Leave Together. This is too many. I will give away nine copies, then.First nine comments below get one book. I will autograph them for you if you promise to make a five dollar donation to your local library. Scott's honor.Go!
  • Enough Time Has Passed on the Papers to Bring This Back

    9 Jul 2014 | 8:45 am
    I had some contracts to wait out a while, and I waited until they were passed.This little collection is back, then. It includes a few stories that are hard to find, and a few things that I think are the most YA-appropriate of my work.And, it is back in the world, if you are so inclined. I suggest Smashwords. Amazon is really acting the part of the evil empire, at the moment.
  • Vultures are ghosts...

    7 Jul 2014 | 6:40 am
    So, the really creepy thing in this picture I posted from my phone while sitting on the riverbank of the Guadalupe the other day ( is how there are no visible GIANT, HUGE OMG VULTURES in the picture. There were at least four vultures in the frame when I clicked the button to take the picture. They were huge. They were all over the picnic and beach area. There is, maybe, one in the tree in the picture if you squint, but it has seemed to fool the camera into reducing its size and visibility. The ones that had been poking at the…
  • Vultures in the Trees

    4 Jul 2014 | 6:17 am
    Yesterday morning, because of an unplanned and unexpected day off, we spent the morning hiking.The vultures and the drought-ravaged trees made me long for the long days and wer nights of the Pacific Northwest. But, the crows there and the vultures here both speak to the ominous presence of death no matter where we are. The carrion birds, no matter what we do, no matter where we go.I am still trying to get the sunblock out of my beard. It whitens my hair, and I am older-looking. I can't seem to get the sunblock out. Drinking coffee, I taste it in the aftertaste, a mineral and chemical bitter…
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    Robin McKinley

  • Apologies

    27 Jul 2014 | 3:39 pm
      This is the worst the ME has been in years . . . possibly since I first started struggling up off the sofa again occasionally, about eighteen months after I went down with it for the first, spectacular, devastating time fourteen and a half years ago.* And the furniture lorry arrives at 8 a.m. on Friday morning whether I’m ready or not.  Whether I’m upright or not.** It’s cooled off some, but not enough, and there’s still no rain—and no rain forecast.***  The hellhounds still aren’t eating.  At all.  I’m surrounded by half-packed boxes and piles of things that have…
  • Weather, myalgic encephalomyelitis and hellcritters

    23 Jul 2014 | 5:41 pm
      Glory hallelujah I hate this weather.  And if one more frelling dingdong weather person says, Oh, it’s going to be ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL SUMMER DAY, NOT A DROP OF RAIN IN SIGHT!!!, I am going to hunt them down and kill them.*  I really don’t get it, about the weather reporters.  Not counting people like me who comprehensively hate the heat** a meteorologist worth a third of his/her salary has to know that land needs rain.  Especially standard western agricultural landscape like southern England.  Endless blue lying-on-the-beach days*** are NOT GOOD FOR ANYONE.† Okay, there is…
  • Further anecdotes of an imperfect week*: relapse two

    20 Jul 2014 | 4:34 pm
      Before I went down with this lurgy I had booked Peter’s BathBot** for delivery and installation this past week.  This meant lying on the floor*** festooned with hellhounds for an hour last Monday† waiting for this large heavy box†† to arrive. Friday was installation day.  I had a booking slot for noon to two.  I was beginning to feel a little bit alive again by Friday, so having chased the hellterror around the churchyard and locked her up with a fresh chew toy the hellhounds and I went up to Third House where I re-embarked on that tired old house-move cliché of attempting…
  • I Don’t Want Another Week Like This One Please: Relapse

    16 Jul 2014 | 5:44 pm
      You may have to wait another day (or two) for how I got to yesterday, including the two days on the sofa in a coma, the vague realisation* Sunday afternoon that I hadn’t actually eaten anything in about forty-eight hours which might be contributing to my extreme lassitude, etc.**  The point is yesterday I was better. It’s been hot this week and muggy with it*** but mostly it eases up and cools off in the evenings which have (mostly) been pretty fabulous in the long summer twilight.  So I was attempting to take patient hellhounds† for the first half-decent hurtle they’d had in…
  • The announcement you’ve been dreading

    11 Jul 2014 | 4:51 pm
      . . . insofar as ‘dreading’ is a suitable word for anything that happens on a blog.  As I say (regularly) to Blogmom when I’ve screwed up yet again, ‘It’s a blog.  Nobody dies.’ Well, nobody dies, but this is the week when you will not get a KES for the foreseeable future.  This flaming sore throat is showing no sign whatsoever of folding its tents and silently stealing away.  And it’s wearing me down, you know?  It’s no worse than it was on Wednesday, it’s just no better, and the rest of me is following it down into the abyssal pit of lethargy* and…
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  • More socks, more pictures!

    13 Jul 2014 | 7:56 am
    Finally got the new set of striped shorty socks off the needles around midnight last night.  Am now slowly weaving in the ends.The blue, red, and yellow colors are close to "right", but the green is much deeper, more saturated.  If I'd had this shade of green, the socks would have been pretty that way too, but it's not how they really look.    I don't know what it is about my camera that does not render this color accurately on its standard setting, but it did the same thing with the first regular (nonstriped) socks of the various greens...this…
  • Another bike topic

    12 Jul 2014 | 9:48 pm
    After I'd bought the new bike, in September 2012, I started looking online for advice on using a bicycle to increase fitness.  I had the basic idea, but was hoping to find useful information for people over 65 who were just starting to get back in better shape.It soon became clear that while multiple sites extolled bike riding as a route to fitness, all the practical advice was aimed at very fit much younger people.   The only thing they said to people my age was "Always consult with a doctor before starting an exercise program."   The advice for younger…
  • Eye Surgery Recovery: Second Week.

    9 Jul 2014 | 3:29 pm
    From last Wednesday, the one-week checkup, to this, I had some exercise restrictions lifted, while others (not lifting weights over 5 pounds) stayed the same.  I could ride the bicycle.  Medicated eyedrops continued on the same schedule, but I was told I could discontinue using the eye shield at night on the Monday (I actually used it Monday night, but not Tuesday).   And I was able to get a plain glass lens put in the left side of my regular glasses, so I could see better.  Over the course of the week I rode my bike (a total of 54 miles, with three days 10+ miles)…
  • Back to the Bike

    9 Jul 2014 | 9:51 am
    A week ago, at the one-week checkup after my cataract surgery, I was given permission to resume riding my bike, and also permission to get a plane lens put in the left side of my glasses.  I wasn't sure how this would work (having been warned I might have double vision since the lens wouldn't fix the astigmatism or help the eyes coordinate for true binocular vision.  But I found it much, much better than wearing the glasses with the old corrective lens on that side.   And that evening, I got on my bike and very cautiously rode up and down the street at its…
  • "Are You Still Writing?"

    8 Jul 2014 | 12:06 pm
    Writers get a lot of routine questions, some of which we find amusing, some annoying, and some tiresome because we've answered them fifty million times already.    "Where to do you get your ideas?"  (They falleth like the gentle rain from heaven...)   "How much did you have to pay to get your book published?"  (Nothing--the publisher pays me for the right to publish it.)   "Do you make as much as Stephen King?"  (No.)   "J.K. Rowling?"  (No.)   "Have you been #1 on the…
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    Day in the Life of an Idiot

  • Why I Hate Sporking*

    28 Jul 2014 | 7:31 am
    *throws up in mouth*This comment was left on one of my fics the other day.  Because I'm that kind of person, I re-read the fic in question and tried to determine what on earth I wrote that would have caused that reaction.  The fic that elicited this remark wasn't terribly explicit, which is to say there was no actual sex scene a person might have gotten squicked over.  There was a conversation between two adults about sex, and I suppose someone could have been upset since one of the characters is discussing these things with her childhood friend who is currently…
  • Deadpool & The Digital Age

    25 Jul 2014 | 8:36 am
    Marvel is giving Deadpool: The Gauntlet Infinite Comic #1 (Duggan & Posehn/Brown) away for free, along with #2.I'll be perfectly honest, my Deadpool fandom goes like this:  Vague memory of Deadpool from X-men.... [scrolling through Tumblr] Ha!  Funny Cosplayer in Deadpool outfit!  [more scrolling] HA! Someone reprinted one of his more outrageous lines from a comic book. [/close Tumblr].Given that in-depth (not!) experience with the character, I can't say that I'm any kind of expert on whether or not "The Gauntlet Infinite" stands up to the usual…
  • Podcast of Silliness

    23 Jul 2014 | 8:00 am
    Yep, Mason and I are still at this... if you're interested in hearing the two of us talk about our favorite manga's current weekly chapters, check us out: Also, I drew more Renji fan art: now I have to run as I have many birthday presents to wrap for a certain manga podcast co-host who is turning 11 tomorrow.
  • Tool-using corvids...

    22 Jul 2014 | 10:52 am
    So, the newest installment of my work-in-progress is up on Wattpad: in which tool-welding corvids stage a jail break. I've veered off outline for these last couple of installments, but I think I'm pushing my way back toward the outline.  Wish me luck.Also, I need to make time tonight to keep working on the e-book version of this.  Of course, being me, things are changing fairly significantly as I do revision.  This was bound to happen.  Ask anyone in my writers' group.
  • My Thoughts on WisCON

    21 Jul 2014 | 7:28 am
    I missed a lot of the excitement this weekend over WisCON's harassment subcommittee's decision because we were in a small, resort town in Wisconsin enjoying our friends' cabin at Crooked Lake.  I took some awesome photos, but the uploading thingie here on LJ is still being stubborn so I may have to point interested parties to another site.  The lake was ice cold, but Mason, being Mason, braved it anyway.  I ended up in the water, too, though initially under much duress. But, because we were away from Twitterverse and the rest over the weekend, a lot of what needs…
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    the essential kit

  • Recent Reads/GGK Book Club: A Song for Arbonne

    25 Jul 2014 | 9:59 am
    I just finished A SONG FOR ARBONNE, which was May’s GGK Book Club book. (I’m working on catching up! I bet I’ll be almost caught up by the end of the year! :)) I’ve been kind of interested in re-reading SONG, because I’ve only read it once and it didn’t, er, sing to me, as it were. It’s the one GGK book I’ve never had any particular interest *in* re-reading, which, in the end, caused me to be interested in re-reading it. I was wondering if it was my callow youth that caused it to not click, or if it was the book itself, or, well, what.
  • 5 things make a post

    23 Jul 2014 | 12:01 pm
    Thing One: Val is working hard on the GEMMA FADE pages, and gave me permission to post a teaser page. :) I tell you, sending a script out and getting drawings back is one of the niftiest things EVER. :) Thing Two: A link to some fudge. Just in case you need some. :) Thing Three: The STONE’S THROE copy edits have been delivered! Soon! SOOOOOOOOOOON! a pulp fiction novel by yours truly will be available to readers everywhere! :) Thing Four: This is a truly terrific fanvid to Nicki Minoj’s Starship. Really honestly terrific, go watch it. Thing Five: I’m starving and gonna go…
  • sunday morning floods

    20 Jul 2014 | 1:13 am
    So there was Young Indiana in the shower and there was me at the other end of the bathroom checking FB and stuff and suddenly I realize that although I’ve been telling him not to block the drain there’s water slopping over the edge of the shower and that the entire kitchen below is flooding. Of course I start bellowing, “Ted! TED!” because I don’t even know why and I’m running downstairs and shouting, “TED!” and he leaps out of bed and I make Indy bring towels downstairs and show him what’s happened and he gasps, “This is a…
  • in other news–

    17 Jul 2014 | 12:39 pm
    –the Fantasy Fudge project is at nearly $3K. If it breaks $3K today I’ll do a random upgrade for one supporter who will get a 2 pound package of fudge instead of 1 pound package. :) There’s a new farmer’s market opening near here pretty soon. Part of me is actually kind of wildly considering emailing them and finding out what their booth fees are and what the general food-sales-at-farmers-markets laws are and maybe doing a fudge & candy stall for 4 or 6 weeks before Christmas. You guys are bad for my crazy head. :) Share this:(x-posted from The Essential Kit)
  • A plea to Marvel

    17 Jul 2014 | 4:06 am
    Those of you who pay attention to this sort of thing will know that this fall, Thor’s hammer Mjolner will be taken up by a woman, who will also take on the name of Thor. Moreover, Steve Rogers is putting down the shield and Sam Wilson, recently introduced to the world at large as Falcon in the 2nd Captain America movie, will be taking it up. Wilson is a black man, not the first to carry the Captain America moniker, but I believe he’s the first person at all to do so as someone Steve chose as his own successor. Thor’s name is apparently being treated as a title, which…
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    Old Enough to Know Better

  • Excellence ...

    24 Jul 2014 | 2:18 pm
    Two of the world's best ukulele players together onstage, backed by a majorly-good cellist ...
  • Neighbors and Dogs

    24 Jul 2014 | 9:46 am
    I did a post a year and a half or so ago about a neighbor who has more dog than he can handle. The problem has gotten worse; the old couple who owns the dog,  Zeus, can't collect him when he escapes, and he has become more menacing to passersby when he gets loose.He fear-barks at people when they try to catch him and get him home, gets snappish, and sooner or later, he is going to bite somebody.I don't know how often it happens, but it does so often enough that the closer neighbors are all aware of it. My wife and I notice mostly when we are walking our own critters and Zeus…
  • La Musica!

    21 Jul 2014 | 9:45 am
    At the acoustic jam Saturday last, which, because the usual show runner had a gig elsewhere, I wound up leading, one of the players brought a nifty little recorder and captured some of our songs. Here's a SoundCloud link to "Woke Up Dead Blues," written by Yours Truly, and led by same.Given that we were in a big pub and only the lead singer's voice and instrument were amplified–well, save for the bass player and one kid who brought an electric guitar and the keyboard players–the little mikes picked up the solos pretty well.How the session works is, a leader gets up, writes the…
  • July Set List

    14 Jul 2014 | 5:29 pm
    Just because ....July Set List:Here Comes the Sun - instrumentalDock of the BayStand By MeHallelujahYesterdayIn My LifeHey, JudeBrown-eyed GirlLittle EgyptLet It Be
  • Ashokan Sort of Farewell

    19 Jun 2014 | 5:26 pm
    I've been working on learning "Ashokan Farewell," by Jay Unger, as a solo instrumental on the ukulele. Haven't gotten there yet, but I am making progress, albeit slowly so. So I figured to spur myself on, I'd post the only vid I could manage of it that wasn't a complete wreck.Even so, the sound is crappy, there are squeaks and squeals, and all like that. Usual excuses here.I used to could play this piece on the guitar, after a fashion, and I thought I'd try to bring it across. It was from El McMeen's transcription in his book on Dropped-D guitar, so to keep the fingering anywhere…
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    Mike Philbin's free planet blog

  • Water Planet - Water People - Water Universe?

    26 Jul 2014 | 11:00 pm
    Forasmuch as it hath pleased Almighty God of his great mercy to take unto himself the soul of our dear brother here departed, we therefore commit his body to the ground; earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in sure and certain hope of the Resurrection to eternal life, through our Lord Jesus Christ; who shall change our vile body, that it may be like unto his glorious body, according to the mighty working, whereby he is able to subdue all things to himself. [source BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER]...that phrase, above, is what many of us have grown up with. This understanding that we are…
  • Luc Besson - Scarlett Johansson - LUCY

    25 Jul 2014 | 12:30 pm
    I like Luc Besson.I like Scarlett Johansson.I like the idea of using 100% of the Human Brain.TRAILER LOADED: PRESS PLAY.
  • Free Planet - world population clock - seven point two four nine billion as of today...

    25 Jul 2014 | 12:44 am
    that is TODAY'S SNAPSHOT from the World Population Clock - we are now well over the seven billion living humans mark. This is a snapshot. Tomorrow, there'll be net 80,000 more. And the day after tomorrow another 80,000. This is taking into account those people who will die over those two days. How many more do we need?I mean, even The (for profit) Industry'll have done the calculation, "What is the maximum number of workers a global bottomline structure can support?" and by this I mean, "Sure, you can have ten twenty thirty billion workers all working for free making cathedrals out of…
  • ARV or Alien Reproduction Vehicles - Bolide Motion Pictures - illustrator Mark McCandlish reveals all.

    23 Jul 2014 | 8:19 am
    I've always wanted a potential Free Planet 'Floating Home and Three Taxi Unit' to use something like what's being discussed in this latest first-cut documentary film from Bolide Pictures, namely anti-gravity propulsion systems.Mark McCandlish is an internationally-recognized illustrator, designer and UFO researcher, focusing primarily on the technology behind advanced propulsion systems. He spent thirty years working within the aerospace and defense industries as a conceptual artist, specializing in aviation art and weapons development for the United States military. During the course of his…
  • The Onion - Deadly Super Rainbow Tears Through West Coast - a rainbow looking for its stolen gold?

    20 Jul 2014 | 12:23 am
    in this neck of the woods i.e. Free Planet, is a big fan of 'the ability to tell it like it is' through SATIRE.Here's a new one (and destined to be a classic) from The Onion News Network: Dozens in California are killed after a powerful Super Rainbow burns a trail of destruction across the state."Or is this merely a rainbow looking for its stolen gold?" Jesus Christ AD 12.
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    Tiny Godzilla

  • Eight miles outta Memphis and I got no spare

    24 Jul 2014 | 1:39 pm
    Here's today's progress on my witchy art-deco horror novel about Lizzie Borden thirty years after her parents' deaths - now featuring ghosts and non-ghosts alike, anti-Catholic conspiracy nuts, supernatural political shenanigans, the mafia, and a Bonus! space-worshiping murder cult hiding behind the KKK:Project: ChapelwoodDeadline: October 1, 2014New words written: 6745 (Hot DAMN.)Present total word count: 118,093Things accomplished in fiction: Draft Zero, ya'll!Things accomplished in real life: Neighborhood jaunt with dog; grocery shopping; went to Walgreens to pick up a prescription.Other:…
  • I'd walk away like a movie star

    23 Jul 2014 | 3:46 pm
    Here's today's progress on my witchy art-deco horror novel about Lizzie Borden thirty years after her parents' deaths - now featuring ghosts and non-ghosts alike, anti-Catholic conspiracy nuts, supernatural political shenanigans, the mafia, and a Bonus! space-worshiping murder cult hiding behind the KKK:Project: ChapelwoodDeadline: October 1, 2014New words written: 3191 (good)Present total word count: 111,348Things accomplished in fiction: Part one of a two-part climax. That's all you need to know. MWOOHAHAHAHA.Things accomplished in real life: Neighborhood jaunt with dog; several rounds of…
  • Get a little bit suburban and go crazy

    22 Jul 2014 | 4:07 pm
    Here's today's progress on my witchy art-deco horror novel about Lizzie Borden thirty years after her parents' deaths - now featuring ghosts and non-ghosts alike, anti-Catholic conspiracy nuts, supernatural political shenanigans, the mafia, and a Bonus! space-worshiping murder cult hiding behind the KKK:Project: ChapelwoodDeadline: October 1, 2014New words written: 3459 (good)Present total word count: 108,057Things accomplished in fiction: Well, some of us have escaped the castle. Sort of.Things accomplished in real life: Neighborhood jaunt with dog; visit from the pest-control guys that took…
  • They tell me I was born there, but I really don't remember

    21 Jul 2014 | 2:07 pm
    Here's recent progress on my witchy art-deco horror novel about Lizzie Borden thirty years after her parents' deaths - now featuring ghosts and non-ghosts alike, anti-Catholic conspiracy nuts, supernatural political shenanigans, the mafia, and a Bonus! space-worshiping murder cult hiding behind the KKK:Project: ChapelwoodDeadline: October 1, 2014New words written: 3040 (pretty good)Present total word count: 104,598Things accomplished in fiction: This castle sucks ass, y'all.Things accomplished in real life: Neighborhood jaunts with dog; dog play-date over at a friend/neighbor's place;…
  • Flame colored paradise for you darling

    19 Jul 2014 | 1:03 pm
    I'm back! Yes, I was gone for a week - I had company in town, an old friend who generally prefers that I not link her or post pictures of her, for privacy reasons. So, no pictures! No links! Just trust me that she's awesome, and we had a lovely time. We goofed off quite a lot, did a bit of yardwork for funsies, went shopping, got pedicures, drank fruity summer beverages on the patio, and lunched all over town.But now she's gone home, and that means I must get back to work.Oh, I definitely got some work done while she was here, yes - but it was all administrative-type stuff. Writer Business,…
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  • Sibilant Fricative

    Adam Roberts
    6 Jul 2014 | 1:53 am
    Newcon Press are publishing this collection of SF/Fantasy related essays and reviews, with a preface by BSFA Award-winning critic Paul Kincaid, in August (I believe the launch is at Loncon): Newcon supremo Ian Whates facebooked the above photo to show that actual copies are now in existence. Exciting stuff! I set up the like-named Sibilant Fricative blog in large part to flog, er to 'promote' the book; and so I shall. The blog has accumulated a variety of other things upon it (none of which are in included in the Sibilant Fricative book, confusingly); but don't let that distract you. I intend…
  • Bête Bound Proof

    Adam Roberts
    22 Jun 2014 | 2:11 am
    ... in my grubby hand. Looks nice!
  • Cover Reveal: US Edition of Twenty Trillion

    Adam Roberts
    18 Jun 2014 | 1:36 pm
    I'm not a big fan of the idiom 'cover reveal', actually. It's the 'reveal' part, like I'm a stage performer whisking a white sheet off something as the audience oos and aas. Still that is the idiom, and I'll run with it. So. [takes breath] ... St Martin's Press in New York New York will be putting out Twenty Trillion; and here is the very very lovely cover they have come up with. Isn't it fine?
  • Tollund

    Adam Roberts
    12 Jun 2014 | 1:47 am
    It's been quiet around here for a little while. Awards seasons has been in full spate and *sigh* it's been an awards season without room for anything I published in 2013, so there's been nothing to report. But just when I thought it was going to pass me by entirely came the rather wonderful news that my short story 'Tollund' has been shortlisted for the 2014 Sidewise Awards. The Sidewise, as you know very well, is dedicated to alternate-history, and this year's shortlists look very strong. I'm delighted to be in such company. Winners will be announced at Loncon. 'Tollund' was written for…
  • Twenty Trillion Variants

    Adam Roberts
    28 Apr 2014 | 5:06 am
    Courtesy of the estimable Mahendra Singh, two could-have-been never-were alternate timeline variant covers for Twenty Trillion Leagues Under the Sea. Cool, no? In related news, check out this excellent Ron Miller essay on Mahendra's superb artistry from i09.
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    Running Air

  • London Calling

    24 Jul 2014 | 12:00 am
    For those who think about these things, here's my Loncon schedule.  It's fairly light, but that means I get to go see other people's readings and panels and...... and London.  Second favorite city in the world.  And outside my door, a whole city's worth of research on Sarah Tolerance's London.Reading: Madeleine Eve RobinsThursday 12:00 - 12:30, London Suite 1 (ExCeL)Alternative Publishing ModelsFriday 19:00 - 20:00, Capital Suite 7+12 (ExCeL)Between the disappearance of independent bookshops, the dominance of Amazon, the rise of ebooks and the popularisation…
  • Books ** BOOKS ** BOOKS ** Books

    23 Jul 2014 | 6:30 am
    It's summer.  Prime reading time.  Need something new?  Want to revisit an old friend?  Odd's are, BVC has something for you.  And for one week only (imagine voice of aggressive carnival barker here) we're having a Dog Days of Summer sale!  Good books half off. thou.
  • That Was Fun. Except Not.

    21 Jun 2014 | 8:07 pm
    Becca took a look at her room--and particularly her much-abused carpet--and decided it was time to rent a carpet cleaner.  So much of today has included bringing things--a futon, a mattress, clothes, her desk chair downstairs, then ferrying hot water up (to fill the carpet cleaner) and down (to throw out the filthy waste water).  I also did three...or is that four?...loads of laundry.  And of course I over-used my wrist, even trying to work one-handed.  Still, the room is hugely cleaner, the kid has sorted out three bags of clothes and two bags of shoes to go to Goodwill,…
  • In All Directions

    11 Jun 2014 | 8:53 am
    I'm off from work today so that I can go in for my post-surgical consult, and get my severance papers notarized.  The girls are off on an adventure (that is to say, flying off to Pennsylvania to visit their grandparents--this would have been impossible a year ago when they were squabbling).  My plan was to sleep in--but the girls had to be up at 6:15, and I promised them waffles (part of my secret plan to use up batter from Sunday morning)--so I am up.Let's see if I can find some amusing things to do today.
  • I have been repaired

    4 Jun 2014 | 10:44 am
    Surgery went well.  For the first 12+hours I did not have a left arm, just a weighted pot-roasty thing that dangled from my shoulder (they gave me a nerve block in the shoulder pre-op which knocked out everything). I am on anti-inflammatory and pain meds, and dozy, but cheery about getting the wrappings off next week.Carry on.
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    Benjamin Rosenbaum

  • Dream Apart Playtests

    8 Jul 2014 | 9:55 am
    Notes from 5 playtests of #dreamapart , my Jewish historical fantasy hack of @mcdaldno's Dream Askew
  • Writing Process

    16 Jun 2014 | 12:37 pm
    Notes on writing process, a blog tour thingie.
  • Works in progress

    15 May 2014 | 1:44 am
    Creative production report: novel rewrite continues :-/ Finished:3 stories, 2 roleplaying games! :-)
  • Aviva's Bat Mitzvah!

    20 Apr 2014 | 6:14 am
    If it's possible to die of pride, somebody should call an ambulance.
  • Language and the body

    23 Mar 2014 | 9:56 am
    Each word an instruction to the body, carrying the trace of a physical act, of exertion or respite.
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    Rudy's Blog

  • Roadtrip #1. Seastacks.

    27 Jul 2014 | 6:07 pm
    A couple of weeks ago, my wife Sylvia and I set out for a drive along the coast from San Francisco to Vancouver. We stuck to Route 1 most of the way, it’s a slow two-laner, but it’s great to be by the ocean. As opposed to being on a giant interstate like Rt. 5. This said, we did take Rt. 5 for most of the way home…two weeks later. I’d always been curious about the Sea Ranch development on the coast north of SF, but it’s kind of boxy. Good cliffs, though. And a bathroom. Further north in California we got to the redwood zone. Love those ferns and the greenness. Later we stopped at a…
  • SF Cliffs, Carnival Rides, Digital Pub, “Gorgeous” Show

    4 Jul 2014 | 11:19 am
    A few weeks ago my wife and I took two of our grandchildren to the Legion of Honor museum in SF, and then the four of us walked south along the clifftops towards Land’s End, and we sat for awhile on a wall looking out at the sea. The big sky. The future. A lady named Chloe, sitting on a bench behind us, took a photo of us and emailed it to me. She’d somehow attached her iPhone to her heavy-duty SLR camera. Wonderful shot. Sylvia’s niece came to visit and we took her and her family out to the Boardwalk at Santa Cruz. (This isn’t the family in the photo.) I love going to the…
  • Looking for Visions

    1 Jul 2014 | 5:25 pm
    Photo by Susan A. Poague. I was out at Four Mile Beach north of Santa Cruz with my wife and some friends yesterday. Pulling on a piece of kelp here, wanting to extract a nice long tentacle. The stalk snapped, I fell on my butt, it was fun. A jolt. This month I read a picture book by Chet Van Duzer, Sea Monsters on Medieval and Renaissance Maps. Found it in Strand Books in NYC. A fascinating theme—and very fitting for me, as I’m in the process of deciding what to put in my next SF novel. Looking for the funky, gnarly monsters that live beneath the blank spaces of my world map. Here’s a…

    25 Jun 2014 | 9:08 am
    *Two new books out in ebook and paperback today! * Transreal Trilogy and All The Visions. *Click the cover images below to visit the book pages. Transreal Trilogy book page. Transreal Trilogy includes three of my “transreal” novels, that is, SF about my own life. * The Secret of Life: A 60s college student learns he’s a saucer alien. * White Light: A hipster math professor travels to the afterworld. * Saucer Wisdom: A troubled author tries to write about alien abductions. All The Visions book page. All the Visions is a short autobiographical novel that I wrote in 1983. Wanting to…
  • Paintings Sale. The “Tentacles” Show in Monterey.

    8 Jun 2014 | 7:00 pm
    I’m putting all of my paintings on sale for three weeks, with $150 off the price of every canvas. Such low prices that I almost hate to do it. But I have limited storage space and I keep painting new ones, so some of old guys have got to find new homes. You can find the current prices under the “Buy Paintings” link on my Paintings page. Meanwhile I finished a new painting this week, Cows on the Run. “Cows on the Run” oil on canvas, June, 2014, 30” x 24”. Click for a larger version of the painting. This landscape shows the hills above Alum Rock Park in East San Jose. I felt the…
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    Kristine Kathryn Rusch

  • Retrieval Artist Update #6

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    22 Jul 2014 | 9:20 pm
    The books are moving through the system. Vigilantes has come back from the content editor yesterday. I have a bit of work to do to rearrange that one, which is not a surprise. The Peyti Crisis just went to the copy editor. And I’m nearly done with Starbase Human, although that book is turning out much longer than expected. Two short stories related to Starbase Human will appear before the book–the first in Fiction River: Pulse Pounders, edited by Kevin J. Anderson and out in December, and the second in Asimov’s, out in the March, 2015, issue (most likely). I’ve…
  • Free Fiction Monday: “Fast Cars”

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    21 Jul 2014 | 11:00 am
    The four musketeers plus one they call themselves: Johnny, Craig, Dale, Rennie and Carren. They want to make something of themselves, do great things after high school. So, they devise an experiment to guarantee their lives will amount to something. And that experiment changes their futures—but not in the ways any of them expects. A Nebula Award-nominated story about dreaming of a future and looking back on the regrets of the past. “Fast Cars” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is free on this website for one week only. The story is also available as a standalone…
  • Free Fiction Monday: “One Small Step”

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    14 Jul 2014 | 11:12 am
    Nyalou Templeton serves on the council for Tranquility Base to give some meaning to her life. Liz Borra, on the other hand, wants to control council. So when meek little Nyalou stands up to Liz over the preservation of the Arrival Monument and its footprint, Liz figures she can intimidate the council like she always does. But Liz might have underestimated Nyalou. And Nyalou might surprise them all—including herself. “One Small Step” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is free on this website for one week only. The story is also available as a standalone from Amazon, Kobo, Barnes…
  • Free Fiction Monday: “Common Sense”

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    7 Jul 2014 | 12:36 am
    In our time, Benjamin Franklin helped Thomas Paine emigrate to the colonies, where the two helped shape the creation of the United States of America. But what if Paine had never made it to the colonies. What fate would he have met if he remained in England?  In this alternate history story by Sidewise Award-winner Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Paine learns that one person can make a tremendous difference—but not necessarily the difference he expects. “Common Sense”by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is free on this website for one week only. The story is also available as a standalone…
  • Two Bundles!

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    1 Jul 2014 | 3:04 pm
    Because of touring schedules, I’m in two bundles this week. Not my tours–music tours. I’m so fortunate to be part of a Storybundle that includes six bands and five fiction writers. (I had to choose my words carefully here, since the musicians write as well.) This new bundle, called The Fantasy Music Bundle, is the brainchild of Peter J. Wacks. Now, pay attention, because you might end up with tons o’stuff if enough people buy the bundle. As with all storybundles, you get to set your own price. (The minimum is $3.) Here’s how Peter says he came up with the idea…
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  • Legion: Skin Deep cover revealed!

    9 Jul 2014 | 12:11 pm
    I'm pleased to present to you Jon Foster's cover illustration for the second Legion novella, Legion: Skin Deep, coming later this year from Subterranean Press. I think Mr. Foster did a fantastic job with this illustration, and I like it even better than his cover for Subterranean Press's edition of the original Legion. You can see a big version after the cut.If you haven't read the original and aren't familiar with the concept, I describe Legion as a fast-paced, witty, and supremely fun thriller with a psychological bent. Stephen Leeds is perfectly sane. It’s his hallucinations who are mad.
  • Legion Sequel Preorder + Storybundle Available Now

    20 Jun 2014 | 11:49 am
    A couple months ago my novella The Emperor's Soul was available as part of a fantasy-themed DRM-free ebook bundle from Storybundle. A lot of readers enjoyed getting the book that way, so now I'm repeating the experiment with my thriller novella Legion, available for the next three weeks along with eight other books in the Cosmic SF StoryBundle.Later this year Subterranean Press will be releasing a limited edition hardcover of Legion's sequel, Legion: Skin Deep, which you can preorder here and read a preview of here. If you haven't read the original Legion, this new bundle is a great way to…
  • Games Creatures Play is out this week!

    3 Apr 2014 | 9:30 am
    I have a new short story out this week in the horror anthology Games Creatures Play, edited by Charlaine Harris and Toni L.P. Kelner. When Charlaine invited me to be part of this anthology and explained what it was going to be about, I knew I had to write a story for it. My contribution is called "Dreamer" and is rather unlike anything I've ever written—and it's even a true short story rather than a novella. You can read a preview of it here. If you like what you see in the preview, I hope you'll check the anthology out. I know that horror isn't something my usual readers necessarily read…
  • Writing Class Videos & Updates

    20 Feb 2014 | 4:09 pm
    First some updates on Words of Radiance, which comes out in less than two weeks. It's almost here! has posted what it was like to be a beta reader (note: I'm not currently looking for additional beta readers) and spoiler-free reactions to the book, and they're mailing out daily context-free snippets. You can see all the sample chapters and's other coverage here.For those of you wanting to go to the midnight release at the BYU Bookstore, they wanted me to make sure you know that books ordered through will not be charged to your credit card until sometime…
  • Last-Minute Holiday Items

    23 Dec 2013 | 10:40 am
    It's too late to have things shipped in time for Christmas from the store, but you can send gift certificates. These are sent by email to whoever you want to receive one, and you can buy them here.The Sugarhouse Barnes & Noble has signed copies of The Rithmatist, Steelheart, The Way of Kings, and all three of my Wheel of Time books. The Steelheart copies are all the B&N exclusive edition with an annotated chapter, and on Saturday there were still three copies with Steelhunt codes inside them. Thanks to all who came to the signing, and to B&N for setting up such a nice event! This is the only…
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    Inhuman Swill

  • How I became a terrorist without really trying

    1 Jul 2014 | 6:47 am
    I've told this story many times, in many ways. This particular version was written for The First Time: First Crime, an evening of readings at Second City's Up Comedy Club in Chicago on April 17, 2013. I read it again at Tuesday Funk #61 on September 3, 2013, and later posted it as an answer on Quora (to the question "What are you banned from? Why?") and as an essay on Medium (where it became an Editor's Pick). As long as it was available for free in those places, I figured it ought to have a home here too. So here it is. Happy Canada Day.They caught up with me in the men's room of a bus…
  • I want your donut, as long as it's free

    29 May 2014 | 12:35 pm
    This happened back on Sunday, April 6. That morning, like we do most Sunday mornings, we took the dog out for a walk for a couple of hours. On our way back to the house, Laura developed a hankering for a donut. We stopped by a couple of neighborhood bakeries that were on our way but none had donuts, and no other type of pastry would do.A few blocks from home, I pointed across the street. "How about we stop over there at Dunkin.""No," she said resignedly, "I don't want a donut from Dunkin."That evening we went into Manhattan to see Lady Gaga's next-to-last concert on the next-to-last night of…
  • Poem: Share the wealth

    16 May 2014 | 8:03 am
    Homeless man feedinghis McDonald's French fries topigeons. Share the wealth.Crossposted from Inhuman Swill
  • When you wish upon a squirrel

    9 May 2014 | 6:17 am
    The other morning I truly thought for a moment that Ella had at long last caught a squirrel.We were walking in Astoria Park in Queens, as we often do, where dogs are allowed to roam off-leash before 9:00 a.m. There's a lightly wooded section of the park near the big swimming pool that I call Squirrel Alley, because all the trees and undergrowth ensure a robust population of arboreal rodents for Ella to chase. We were walking past a tree that one squirrel had just used as an escape route when I spotted another squirrel on the far side of the tree. It was sitting on an exposed root eating a…
  • Reminder about tonight's Boundless Tales reading in Queens

    17 Apr 2014 | 7:40 am
    Just a quick reminder about tonight's Boundless Tales reading in Queens. The listed time is 7:30 pm, but if you're making the trip out I happen to know that the event won't actually start until 8:00 pm, and that I'm the last of the five readers in the lineup. That's not to give you an excuse for showing up late, but, you know, it's a bit of a trek from the city so you don't have to kill yourself to make it there on the dot.Thursday, April 17th, 7:30pmBoundless Tales@ Waltz-Astoria23-14 Ditmars Blvd.Astoria, Queens, NY 11105(N/Q train at Astoria-Ditmars Blvd) Boundless Tales features themed…
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    Douglas Smith's blog

  • FML update: New Russian market "Kosmoport"

    Douglas Smith
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:13 am
    I've added a new market to the Foreign Market List. Kosmoport is a new Russian magazine. I'm still tracking down some details, but you can check it out on the FML here. If your Russian is better than mine (or better than the Google translation), I'd appreciate it if you can glean any more info from their website than I could, especially regarding their maximum length for submissions.
  • "The Walker..." published in Quasar #2 in Italy

    Douglas Smith
    7 Jun 2014 | 1:54 pm
    I wrote recently about the upcoming publication of my story "The Walker of the Shifting Borderland" in the new Italian magazine Quasar. The issue with my story (issue #2) is now out (see the cover at the right).   "The Walker of the Shifting Borderland" won the Aurora Award in 2013, and I'm pleased to see that my tale is appearing with a Hugo-nominated story by Mike Resnic and one by Robert Silverberg. This is my fourth publication in Italy.  If you'd like to read "The Walker...," you can pick up an ebook version in my bookstore here.
  • Playing the Short Game: University of Toronto course

    Douglas Smith
    21 May 2014 | 1:47 pm
    I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be teaching a course this fall at the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies. The course is called "Playing the Short Game: How to Market and Sell Short Fiction" and is part of the certificate program that the U of T offers in their Creative Writing program. The course is based on the popular blog series of the same name that I did in 2013 for Amazing Stories. My upcoming book, also titled Playing the Short Game, will be released later this summer and will form the textbook for the course. If you live in Toronto and are interested,…
  • The 49th Shelf reviews THE WOLF

    Douglas Smith
    19 May 2014 | 12:59 pm
    Steve Stanton has a nice review of The Wolf at the End of the World up on the "Recommended Reads" page at The 49th Shelf, the site dedicated to Canadian books. Here's a brief excerpt from his review: "An excellent debut novel. … Modern controversy over aboriginal land claims is mixed with a romantic embellishment of ancient stories. … Staccato pacing and multiple POVs with a hook at the end of each short segment [keeps] the energy level perpetually high." Check out more on The Wolf, including an excerpt and full buying links, here.
  • The terrible legacy of residential schools: Moose River Crossing

    Douglas Smith
    19 May 2014 | 11:43 am
    I had the opportunity recently of viewing the film "Moose River Crossing" at the Reel World Film Festival. Through the voices of six characters, all survivors of the residential school system, we are given a glimpse into the terrible impact that this shameful program had on our native peoples. I wrote more on the residential schools here earlier The movie is wonderfully done, but powerful and (as it should be) disturbing. The film's writer and director, Shirley Cheechoo, herself a residential school survivor, attended the screening and the Q&A after, as did the producer and some of the…
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    Ecstatic Days

  • Books Read and in Progess: Smith Henderson, Evie Wyld, and More

    Jeff VanderMeer
    14 Jul 2014 | 10:44 am
    So far this year I’ve had a chance to read and review a handful of novels for the NYTBR, LA Times, and the Guardian—here are some links and info, along with, first, my current reading—very excited about everything I’m reading now. CURRENT READING (in progress) Right now, I’m on the road and am reading the following, all of which I’m really enjoying thus far. I don’t know why, but I’ve been going back and forth between them without it destroying my immersion in any of them. –After the Fire, A Still Small Voice by Evie Wyld (magnificent author—such a sharp, sharp writer)…
  • Weird Fiction StoryBundle: Two Weeks to Go!

    Jeff VanderMeer
    9 Jul 2014 | 9:11 am
    StoryBundle has given me the exciting opportunity to curate a “weird fiction” bundle based on some of our Cheeky Frawg offerings, with my last story collection, blurbed by Junot Diaz, thrown in. You can pick up e-book versions of amazing work by iconic Finnish writer Leena Krohn and sample some of the best current weird Finnish fiction in the anthology It Came From the North, edited by Desirina Boskovich. You can also read two classic weird novels from the American Kafka, Michael Cisco—as well as Karin Tidbeck’s amazing collection Jagannath, which won the Crawford Award and was a…
  • Southern Reach UK Tour: London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dublin, Bristol, Bath

    Jeff VanderMeer
    2 Jul 2014 | 11:20 am
    The last two weeks of August I’ll be over in the United Kingdom for a book tour behind the Southern Reach trilogy. You can find the basic details below, and I’ll provide more information closer to August. My wife Ann VanderMeer will be traveling with me and participating in some of these events. We hope to see many of our UK friends and fans! London Aug. 14, 4pm—Reading and signing at Forbidden Planet; exclusive reading from Acceptance (London Megastore) Aug. 15-17—World SF Convention; panels below, Walk-with-Stars Saturday morning; rest of schedule TBA **Big Anthologies:…
  • Review: All the Birds, Singing by Evie Wyld

    Jeff VanderMeer
    2 Jul 2014 | 6:03 am
    I picked up Evie Wyld’s All the Birds, Singing on a whim, because I liked the cover design and the tone of the review quotes on the back. I didn’t know anything about the author, and it wasn’t until I was about three-fourths of the way through that I discovered she’d won a lot of literary prizes for the novel. All I knew by then is that Wyld deserved all of those prizes. I can count on one hand the number of novels I’ve read in the last couple of years where the prose is truly exceptional and the author’s vision has both clarity and substance. In All the Birds, Singing Wyld…
  • Southern Reach Summer Tour: The Carolinas, San Diego Comic-Con, Mystery Galaxy

    Jeff VanderMeer
    30 Jun 2014 | 6:03 pm
    “I’m loving the Southern Reach trilogy…Creepy and fascinating.” – Stephen King “”Truly visionary, epic…VanderMeer has done something extraordinary in the Southern Reach. Wild. Bizarre. Romantic. Evocative of Gibson, Lovecraft, Kafka. Thank you for creating something original in a world that’s referencing itself to death. It is refreshing.” – Vernon Reid, Living Color As featured in Entertainment Weekly: The Southern Reach trilogy, chronicling efforts by the Southern Reach secret agency to solve the mystery behind Area X, a pristine wilderness cut off…
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    Paperback Writer

  • Sub Ops Ten

    Lynn Viehl
    28 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Ten Things About Submission OpportunitiesBundoran Press has an open call for their upcoming Second Contacts anthology: "Science Fiction is our conversation with the future. But what if we're talking with alien voices? Second Contacts seeks stories which explore what happens fifty years after first contact, for us, for them, for our shared future. The possibilities are endless — conquest, collaboration, assimilation, or, even abandonment. On Earth, in space, or on alien planets, what will happen to individuals and societies after two generations or more of staring into alien eyes?" Length:…
  • Sorry, No Fairy Dust

    Lynn Viehl
    27 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Over the last couple of weeks I've received a ton of requests for cover quotes, so as a public service I'd like to clarify some things:I cannot make your book an instant bestseller. I wish I could, because I'd have a lot more friends in the industry. To be honest, no one can, and anyone who tells you differently is lying to you. Do right by your readers by writing the absolute best book you can, and you'll have the same shot as anyone else.Cover quotes from me have ended up on some books by unknown (or relatively unknown) authors who went on to become huge bestsellers. This resulted in a lot…
  • Writer Blues

    Lynn Viehl
    26 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Why are writers prone to depression? According to Denise Mann and her video and article here on the subject, there are only a couple of causes: isolation, rejection and self-inflicted misery. As a writer who has been dealing with actual, diagnosed clinical depression since my teens (search PBW with the word depression and you'll pull up a dozen or so pieces I've written about it) I don't believe there is a one-size-fits-all explanation for the source. All writers are different, and while statistically speaking we may be more likely to deal with depression than non-writers, I think the causes…
  • Shimmer

    Lynn Viehl
    25 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Of all the places we visited on our road trip Maine made the biggest impression on me; I already have two stories outlined from my experiences there. This short film by Jon Roemer (contains background music, for those of you at work) captures many of the reasons this farthest northeastern state will brilliantly shine in your memory: Maine Shimmer from Jon Roemer on Vimeo.
  • Just Write

    Lynn Viehl
    24 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Today I'm off to write something new and post it online before midnight. Everyone inclined to do the same is invited to join me.My link: To save everyone from having to jump around to different parts I'm going to post my story with the previous work on it included, so click here for the updated In the Leaves novella (for those of you who have been following it, the story picks up with new additions beginning at today's date mark on page 10)For more details on Just Write Thursdays, click here to go to the original post.
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    Bluejo's Journal

  • GoH at Balticon in 2015

    Jo Walton
    21 Jul 2014 | 1:19 am
    I'm a guest of honour at Balticon next year. Balticon is Memorial Day weekend, in Baltimore. I was there this year, it's a fun con -- big. lots of stuff, lots of fans.I just thought I'd mention this here now, because it seems as if a lot of my friends might be finding themselves unexpectedly free at Memorial Day weekend next year, and if so it would be lovely to see you all at Balticon.
  • A dawn will come

    Jo Walton
    20 Jul 2014 | 1:37 am
    Vallhall stands empty now, silent and cold,The shield-roof shivered, all the dead are gone,Down where they feasted fly the wind-blown leaves,Spiralling, fall, to rise and fall again,Dead leaves, one golden plume, a sheet of runes,The playthings of the wanton whirling wind,No ghosts, no gods, no answers, and no songs.
  • My LonCon3 Schedule

    Jo Walton
    19 Jul 2014 | 4:04 am
    Reading: Jo WaltonThursday 15:30 - 16:00, Capital Suite 10 (ExCeL)Jo WaltonSassafrassThursday 17:00 - 18:00, Capital Suite 1 (ExCeL)Norse mythology music focusing on the death of Baldur and the strife between Odin and his blood-brother Loki. Ada Palmer and Lauren Schiller performing as the duo “Sassafrass: Trickster & King,” will sing selections from Sassafrass's close harmony a cappella song cycle project Sundown: Whispers of Ragnarok, which narrates the history of the cosmos according to Viking legend, from the creation of the world to Ragnarok. In this performance they will be joined…
  • Things you didn't know about Heraclitus

    Jo Walton
    17 Jul 2014 | 4:39 am
    I was re-reading Popper's The Open Society and its Enemies before falling asleep, and indeed, as you will see, after falling asleep. I think I may have mentioned that I read until I am asleep, and then after I am asleep I close the book and remove my glasses and turn off the light. So I was reading about Heraclitus, and I came to the sentence "He got this idea from the oriental..." and I thought "Oh what an unfortunate word, maybe it was OK in 1943 when he wrote it but how could I not have noticed it on previous reading, oh dear!" and continued reading "the oriental Cao Li, the woman whose…
  • A cover for The Just City

    Jo Walton
    10 Jul 2014 | 4:37 pm
    There's a cover for The Just City up on Amazon. This isn't going to be the real cover. The cover is being entirely rethought, and when there's a real cover I will let you know. (However, there's a real book, and it really can be pre-ordered.) Accepting that this isn't the real cover, and the real cover will be completely different, since that cover is out there I thought it might be interesting to see what you thought of it, just for my own amusement. So?The flap copy is there too, and that probably is real.
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    Martha Wells

  • ArmadilloCon and The Cloud Roads

    28 Jul 2014 | 7:02 am
    First, after being out of print for most of this year, the trade paperback of The Cloud Roads is now back in stock or available for ordering at many outlets, including:Barnes and Noble, Chapters Indigo, Amazon US, Powell's, Mysterious Galaxy, The Tattered Cover, Books-a-Million, Book, Waterstones UK, Book, Amazon UK,,,, Amazon Spain, (and all the other Amazons), or look for it it at an independent book store in the US through IndieBound.It's also been, and still is, available in: ebook: Amazon Kindle Edition, Baen Webscription eBook…
  • 23 Jul 2014 | 6:36 am

    23 Jul 2014 | 6:36 am
    New books:* Doghouse by L.A. KornetskyEven though she’s unlicensed as an investigator, the infamously nosy Ginny Mallard has begun to make a name for herself as an unofficial champion of the tongue-tied. When a mysterious stranger comes to her with landlord trouble, she convinces her bartender friend Teddy Tonica to help her once more. * Dust and Light by Carol Berg is up for preorderHow much must one pay for an hour of youthful folly? The Pureblood Registry accused Lucian de Remeni-Masson of “unseemly involvement with ordinaries,” which meant only that he spoke with a young woman not…
  • Audiobook News

    22 Jul 2014 | 5:55 am
    Some great news! The audiobook narrator for Stories of the Raksura Vol I will be Christopher Kipiniak, who did the first three Books of the Raksura.If you like audiobooks and are new here, all my fantasy novels plus the Star Wars novel are available in audiobook at, Tantor Audio, Audible UK, iTunes, and other audiobook retailers.A note about conventions, because this comes up occasionally: authors and artists (who are not in the top 4-5 or so headlining guests) do not get paid to go to SF/F conventions, to do panels or workshops, even all day long workshops. We pay our own travel,…
  • ArmadilloCon and Not WorldCon

    21 Jul 2014 | 5:52 am
    This weekend I'm going to be at ArmadilloCon 36 in Austin, Texas. Major guests are: Ian McDonald, Ted Chiang, Jacob Weisman, Stephanie Pui-Mun Law, Sigrid Close, Michael Walsh, and Mario Acevedo.Here's my schedule. (I'm also one of the teachers for the all day writers' workshop on Friday.) For my reading I'll be doing a section of one of the upcoming Raksura novellas.Fr1600E Tree Creatures Fri 4:00 PM-5:00 PM Room E Wells*, Clarke, Oliver, Stanley Ents, nymphs dryads and more. Discussion regarding the various kinds of tree creatures from myth and legend. Sa1000D Elemental Magic Sat 10:00…
  • People Who Need Help

    20 Jul 2014 | 5:58 am
    Save a Mule: took her to our local vet who did an ultrasound and biopsy which confirmed it is a type of cancer called a Mast Cell Tumor. The best course of action is to have it surgically removed as soon as possible! We contacted three seperate equine vets for estimates and have scheduled her surgery with Dr. Davis at Reata Equine Hospital in Weatherford, which is about an hour away. Once the tumor is removed she will have a drain put in and so she will have to stay there at the hospital for at least 3-5 days, possibly a whole week. After that I will be taking…
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    Reality Skimming

  • Diff the Dragon – Part Fortysix

    David Lott
    25 Jul 2014 | 10:53 am
    Diff the Dragon by Angela Lott, illustrations by Richard Bartrop. An Okal Rel Universe Legacy Novella featuring the young Alivda Angela Lott is the middle child of Lynda’s three daughters. She did two years of Business schooling at the College of New Caledonia and is now working as a receptionist at her local FYiDoctors. In her spare time she enjoys writing, video blogging, reading and watching very nerdy TV shows. << Start at Beginning >> Part 46 Alivda was bored with the adults. They couldn’t go as fast as she could and, though that had been awesome to start with, now it…
  • Diff the Dragon – Part Fortyfive

    David Lott
    18 Jul 2014 | 11:09 am
    Diff the Dragon by Angela Lott, illustrations by Richard Bartrop. An Okal Rel Universe Legacy Novella featuring the young Alivda Angela Lott is the middle child of Lynda’s three daughters. She did two years of Business schooling at the College of New Caledonia and is now working as a receptionist at her local FYiDoctors. In her spare time she enjoys writing, video blogging, reading and watching very nerdy TV shows. << Start at Beginning >> Part 45 “Why is she with you?” were the first words out of Ann’s mouth. “And it’s nice to see you too,” Amel said. He and his…
  • Diff the Dragon – Part Fortyfour

    David Lott
    11 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    Diff the Dragon by Angela Lott, illustrations by Richard Bartrop. An Okal Rel Universe Legacy Novella featuring the young Alivda Angela Lott is the middle child of Lynda’s three daughters. She did two years of Business schooling at the College of New Caledonia and is now working as a receptionist at her local FYiDoctors. In her spare time she enjoys writing, video blogging, reading and watching very nerdy TV shows. << Start at Beginning >> Part 44 In the end, Perry managed to get a babysitter named Korbin. He was about fourteen, a member of the PA and just a little more Sevolite…
  • Diff the Dragon – Part Fortythree

    David Lott
    4 Jul 2014 | 6:00 am
    Diff the Dragon by Angela Lott, illustrations by Richard Bartrop. An Okal Rel Universe Legacy Novella featuring the young Alivda Angela Lott is the middle child of Lynda’s three daughters. She did two years of Business schooling at the College of New Caledonia and is now working as a receptionist at her local FYiDoctors. In her spare time she enjoys writing, video blogging, reading and watching very nerdy TV shows. << Start at Beginning >> Part 43 “Amel?” “Yes, may I pass?” “Only if you are here to take that little blonde terror and her friend with you,” the guard…
  • July 3, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote

    Lynda Williams
    3 Jul 2014 | 8:00 am
    Lurol rattled Amel with her irreverent extrapolations from data in Part 5: Far ArenaThe post July 3, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote appeared first on Reality Skimming.
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    All quiet in France

  • Tea and Jeopardy 23

    21 Jul 2014 | 8:02 am
    The lovely Emma Newman was kind enough to interview me for her awesome show Tea and Jeopardy (Tea, assorted geekery and peril, what more can you ask for?). You can listen to the episode here. And thanks to Paul Weimer for the question ^^ Cross-posted from Aliette de Bodard Leave a comment at original post, or comment here.
  • Final Worldcon schedule

    18 Jul 2014 | 7:05 am
    So, I got my final Worldcon schedule, and I’m going to be busy (in a pretty awesome way). As a reminder (taking a leaf from Kate Elliott’s book), I go to cons to meet people, so don’t be shy if you see me and want to talk. I’m also quite happy signing stuff and/or talking outside of panels (provided I’m not running on my way to elsewhere, of course!). Below is where you can find me: Autographing Thursday 15:00 – 16:30, Autographing Space (ExCeL) I will have signed postcards featuring the On a Red Station, Drifting artwork, and possibly a few other books:…
  • The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirty-First Annual Collection now out

    16 Jul 2014 | 6:41 am
    Gardner Dozois’s annual Years Best Science Fiction has now been released: it contains my Hugo and Locus finalist and Nebula Award winner “The Waiting Stars”, as well as stories by the likes of Nancy Kress, Alastair Reynolds, Lavie Tidhar, Elizabeth Bear, Ian McDonald and Ken Liu… I always find those collections worth reading, especially since I no longer keep up with short fiction markets quite as much, and Dozois’s summation of the state of the field always makes for fascinating reading. Buy here on amazon US|amazon UK. Cross-posted from Aliette de Bodard Leave…
  • Collated tweets on science and fiction

    15 Jul 2014 | 7:41 am
    I ranted this weekend on science in fiction on twitter–thought I’d collate those into a blog post. Warning: minimal editing (that’s why every sentence is around 140 characters ^^). I’m getting a bit tired of “it’s not really hard SF” argument, which–oddly enough– often coincides with “this story is written by a woman/POC/other marginalised POV).  (before anyone asks, I don’t have a specific occurrence to point to; it’s just an accumulation of small things). Thing is: the discourse about what constitutes hard…
  • Strange Horizons reprint: “Chambered Nautilus” by Elisabeth Vonarburg

    30 Jun 2014 | 11:53 am
    Strange Horizons very kindly asked me to curate a reprint for their June issue. I picked Elisabeth Vonarburg’s “Chambered Nautilus” (translated from the French by Jane Brierley). I really like Vonarburg’s introspective, dreamy science fiction, and I think it’s a shame that so little of it got translated into English (you can pick up The Maerlande Chronicles from amazon–I prefer her Tyranaël series, but I think this stopped being translated after two volumes?). More info here at her English website. Being an editor, even if it’s for a brief, one-story…
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    Mostly English

  • Eating Authors: Harry Connolly

    28 Jul 2014 | 4:31 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there.</p> Hiya. I’m typing up these words on Sunday afternoon. Since Wednesday night I’ve been hanging with some two dozen speakers of the Klingon language in a hotel just south of the Philadelphia Airport. There has been little sleep but a great deal of linguistic silliness. It is fair to say I am exhausted. It’s also my birthday. By all rights, I should be taking a nap or eating cake (though probably not both at the same time). Instead, I’m here, typing this up, because you need to know about…
  • Eating Authors: Mike Resnick

    21 Jul 2014 | 4:31 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there.</p> I’ve more or less been on vacation for the past week, and what better way to come back than with a bang and a guest at EATING AUTHORS who is a legend in the field. I first came across Mike Resnick in his column, “Ask Bwana,” back in the pages of Speculations when I was a struggling neo-pro, which is to say my earliest experience of the man was reading his advice as he paid it forward. Mike’s been described as the field’s leading award winner for short fiction. He’s won the…
  • Eating Authors: Mark Budz

    14 Jul 2014 | 4:30 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there.</p> If you’re reading this on the Monday that it posts, please know that I am far far away from home, grabbing some much needed down time. While most of the east coast’s pod of authors are recovering from Readercon, I snuck off to a mountain lake resort in the Poconos, where there’s nary a rocketship or flaming sword to be seen. Before I set off on my brief getaway, I made sure you’d have this week’s EATING AUTHOR guest, Mark Budz, here to entertain you. Mark took second place in the…
  • Eating Authors: Ann Leckie

    7 Jul 2014 | 4:31 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there.</p> I first encountered this week’s guest, Ann Leckie, back in February of 2012 when she contacted me in my position as SFWA’s Election officer to express her desire to run for Secretary. She won that contest, and served for a year on SFWA’s board at a time when our community reeled with what should have been obvious issues of harassment. Ann’s comments at the time were direct, cogent, and well worth including a link to here because, absurd as it may seem, the problem has not gone away.
  • Farewell, Jay

    28 Jun 2014 | 9:29 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there. Word has at last arrived, as we all knew it would, of the passing of Jay Lake. There’s no shortage of words out there about his battle with cancer — the vast majority of them written by Jay himself — and I have no doubt that today and in the days ahead the community of SFF authors and fans will be awash with remembrances and tributes to his humor, his generosity, his spirit, and the way he chose not just to live his life, but to these last few years in particular. Jay was my friend. I’ve noted in the…
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    The Urtaru Chronicles

  • My mother wanted me to be a doctor…

    Armen Chakmakjian
    12 Jul 2014 | 4:09 pm
      During my first semester as a freshman year at RIT, in 1982, I had a work-study job in the library, long before I got my job as a computer center lab assistant.  One day, walking down the “quarter-mile”, the raised path from the dorms to the academic side of campus, one of my library […]
  • When Software was Hardware…

    Armen Chakmakjian
    25 Jun 2014 | 6:31 pm
    Okay folks, digging through tons of stuff and getting rid of it.  Came across this note.  This is probably around 1989 or 1990 as far as I can remember.  We had a problem that came up on Friday night and I had to write to my boss about it.    Some definitions VLC = VAXstation […]
  • Another ancient trip report

    Armen Chakmakjian
    25 Apr 2014 | 12:00 pm
    I’ve excised the company confidential stuff, but it was 16 years ago and it should provide some amusement.  I was notorious for writing trip reports like this when I came back to the factory (as we called the office at the company) including my trip to India several years later. —————————————————————————- The Unauthorized Trip Report: […]
  • 1.5 Million

    Armen Chakmakjian
    24 Apr 2014 | 8:13 am
    Today, April 24, 2014, Armenians all over the world remember a tragedy that befell our Ottoman Armenian ancestors 99 years ago.  That tragedy was so horrific to the world that a new word, genocide, was created to describe what the Young Turk regime perpetrated.  The Ottoman Armenian population was decimated by killings and deportations into […]
  • Evernote vs MS OneNote on my Apple constellation of devices.

    Armen Chakmakjian
    17 Mar 2014 | 1:53 pm
    Woah. I just installed it 2 macs, my iPhone and iPad. editing the same doc open on two different devices with only about 2 second lag between checkboxes and text appearing on each device. This is friggin’ awesome. The free form editing is great on the iPad and the mac, less useful on the iPhone. […]
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  • Orangetv Hadirkan Liga Inggris Terlengkap Dan Liga Champion Serta Channel Premium Untuk Pengguna Parabola Besar

    19 Jul 2014 | 9:59 pm
    (Introduction) PT.Mega Media (OrangeTV) meluncurkan varian lini produk terbaru nya, yaitu decoder C-Band yang diberi nama Orange Ceria. Peluncuran lini produk baru ini ditujukan bagi pengguna parabola besar C Band atau yan juga dikenal sebagai parabola jaring di Indonesia. Dengan demikan para...
  • Keunggulan low MPV

    11 May 2014 | 8:06 pm
  • Tips mengatasi bayi yang susah makan

    18 Apr 2014 | 4:23 am
    3 alam cara untuk hamil bayi laki-laki – penting Tips untuk mendapatkan anak laki-laki yang Anda inginkan Pasangan di sekitar dunia ingin belajar bagaimana untuk hamil bayi laki-laki tanpa harus resor untuk prosedur medis yang mahal. Jika Anda memiliki preferensi untuk hamil anak laki-laki,...
  • Tips Perawatan Bayi Terbaru

    18 Apr 2014 | 2:48 am
    Berapa kali Anda berkata dalam berpisah dengan seseorang dalam percakapan “Menjaga”. Beberapa kolega akhir e-mail mereka dengan “Lebih baik”. Seorang teman saya sering mengatakan kepada saya “Memiliki hari yang positif”. Berhati-hatilah, menjadi baik, dan...
  • Cara bermain golf malaysia – Lengkap Beserta Tips

    16 Apr 2014 | 8:25 pm
    Pemula Tips Golf untuk menurunkan Skor Golf Anda Ketika Anda mulai untuk mempelajari dasar-dasar permainan golf, berikut adalah tips cepat golf yang mencakup dasar-dasar ayunan golf termasuk posisi ball, ayunan golf tips dan downswing golf tips. Praktek ini golf tips secara teratur dan Anda akan...
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    David MackDavid Mack »

  • Seekers #1 & All the Blish Anthologies

    David Mack
    27 Jul 2014 | 8:12 pm
    The whole shebang, courtesy of Twitter user (and DeviantArt creator) TLBKlaus — Now that’s what I call efficiency. Tune in next month to see them all next to the cover of Seekers #2: Point of Divergence, by Dayton Ward and Kevin Dilmore!    
  • Classic covers & Star Trek: Seekers ( #SFWApro )

    David Mack
    26 Jul 2014 | 9:23 am
    In my previous post, I discussed the inspiration for the cover aesthetic in use on the new Star Trek: Seekers novel series. I also put out a call for more such side-by-side images from anyone who had the classic Bantam anthologies as well as book one of the new series. I am delighted to present [...]
  • Seekers & Classic Trek, side by side — #SFWApro

    David Mack
    24 Jul 2014 | 9:48 pm
    As I have written about before, the inspiration for the new Star Trek: Seekers series of novels was a run of faux book covers that illustrator Rob Caswell created and posted on his DeviantArt blog. Rob used the Archer-class starship designed by Vanguard conceptual artist Masao Okazaki as the “star” of his new imaginary Star [...]
  • Read my Q&A with KULT Magazine

    David Mack
    23 Jul 2014 | 1:58 pm
    A writer named Dominik Hug just interviewed me for the Swiss F/SF publication KULT Magazine. We discussed a wide range of topics, including how I work, how I got started, my past projects and my upcoming work. A brief sample of our erudite exchange: KULT: What does a normal David Mack working day look like? [...]
  • They call me “mad.” I say I’m “organized.”

    David Mack
    22 Jul 2014 | 7:52 pm
    Over dinner this evening, Kara and I talked about when we adopted our two current feline companion animals, Winifred and Puck. I knew by heart the date that I brought Freddie home—October 1 is marked on our calendar as “Freddie-versary”—and that, based on a vet’s estimate of her age at the time of adoption, she [...]
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    SF Signal

  • The SF Signal Podcast (Episode 254): Amazon vs. Hachette

    Patrick Hester
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:30 pm
    In episode 254 of the SF Signal Podcast Patrick Hester brings together Gail Carriger, Jay Garmon, Derek Austin Johnson, and Michael R. Underwood to discuss: Does the average book buyer/reader care about the Hachette v Amazon battle? SHOULD they care and why? The average book buyer probably doesn’t know there’s a battle going on, so WHY should they care? WHY should they not? Is this whole thing contained within the SF&F community and, therefore, a non-issue for most people? Hachette is a multi-billion dollar company being portrayed as the innocent underdog – why? Is that…
  • eBook Deal: INCANDESCENCE by Greg Egan is only $1.99 for a Limited Time

    John DeNardo (SF Signal)
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:25 pm
    For a limited time Incandescence by Greg Egan will be on sale for $1.99 on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The sale begins today but, at the time of this post, not yet…so check the price before ordering! Here’s the description: The long-awaited new novel from Greg Egan! Hugo Award-winning author Egan returns to the field with Incandescence, a new novel of hard SF. The Amalgam spans nearly the entire galaxy, and is composed of innumerable beings from a wild variety of races, some human or near it, some entirely other. The one place that they cannot go is the bulge, the bright, hot…

    John DeNardo (SF Signal)
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:20 pm
    Check out the table of contents for the new alternate history anthology Wars to End All Wars: Alternate Tales from the Trenches edited by N.E. White, currently available for only $0.99! Here’s the book description: Alternate tales set during the first World War, this short story collection takes history and tweaks it. 2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the start of World War 1. Seven authors, including the award-winning Science Fiction and Fantasy author, Elizabeth Moon, commemorate that event by writing stories set during the great war, adding their own, sometimes speculative,…
  • “The Walking Dead” Season 5 Trailer

    John DeNardo (SF Signal)
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:15 pm
    Looks like some interesting things are in store for the upcoming season of The Walking Dead. Here’s the Season 5 trailer that premiered at ComicCon… No related posts.
  • Cover & Synopsis: THE MACHINE AWAKES by Adam Christopher

    John DeNardo (SF Signal)
    27 Jul 2014 | 10:12 pm
    Here’s the cover and synopsis for the upcoming novel The Machine Awakes by Adam Christopher, follow-on to Burning Dark…. As humanity fights a destructive mechanical race, a government agent finds a conspiracy far closer to home in this far future space opera set in the Spider War universe of Burning Dark In the decades since the human race first made contact with the Spiders—a machine race capable of tearing planets apart—the two groups have fought over interstellar territory. But the war has not been going well for humankind, and with the failure of the Fleet Admiral’s…
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    UFO Blogger : Uncover The UFO Truth

  • 2014: Video Message To The People About 9/11 By Danish Journalist

    26 Jul 2014 | 3:14 am
    Tommy Hansen is a Danish independent journalist who has been investigating the unsolved events of 9/11 since shortly after they happened. Down below is video message of Tommy Hansen ahead of 9/11 anniversary.
  • 2014 CWG Live : Watch Live 2014 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony

    26 Jul 2014 | 1:53 am
    On 23rd July 2014, Celtic Park will host the Opening Ceremony of the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games (CWG) in Scotland, UK.After crossing many nations, the Queen’s Baton will return to Glasgow, to officially open the Games. The Queen's Baton Relay, held prior to the beginning of the Commonwealth Games (CWG), is similar to the Olympic Torch Relay and usually is the star attraction of what promises to be a glittering CWG Opening Ceremony. A celebration of Scottish culture and national pride, the event would bring together icons from different spheres of entertainment for the spectacle.Down…
  • UFO Sighting Photographed Prior To Crop Circle Formation In Wiltshire, UK

    25 Jul 2014 | 10:05 am
    A woman says she has been left ‘freaked right out’ after she saw a strange light in the sky – then heard that not only had a friend seen it too, and photographed it, but that a mysterious crop circle had been discovered the following morning.Jo Webb said she and her friend Lisa Willcox were returning home to Malmesbury from an evening trip to Cirencester on the first Monday night of July, when she saw a strange light in the sky.“I was driving and I spotted a bright orange light in the sky to the right at an angle of about 45 degrees,” she said. “We were driving down the A429 just…
  • Australian Pilot Fred Valentich Abduction Case

    22 Jul 2014 | 7:59 am
    Flight officer Steve Robey recalls the last conversation he had with Fred Valentich. Valentich thought he was being buzzed by a mysterious craft.On the night of October 21, 1978 Frederick Valentich radioed into air traffic control in Melborne with some strange news. An unidentified metallic craft was toying with his Cessna as he flew over the Bass Strait en route to King's Island. No one ever saw him or his aircraft again.It all happened during the largest wave of UFO sightings Australia had ever seen. Over fifty reports were uncovered from the area of Valentich's disappearance on that day…
  • Yet Again, Incredible UFO Flies Into Popocatepetl Volcano

    21 Jul 2014 | 1:31 am
    Incredible footage of a UFO flying into Popocatepetl Volcano in Mexico on May 30, 2013. The volcano has been a UFO hotspot for years with hundreds of sightings.
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    Stories For The Masses | Stories For The Masses

  • Daily Photo 16 – July 27, 2014

    Mike Manz
    27 Jul 2014 | 8:39 am
      Photo A Day – 7-27-14 – Trellised The post Daily Photo 16 – July 27, 2014 appeared first on Stories For The Masses.
  • Daily Photo 15 – July 26, 2014

    Mike Manz
    26 Jul 2014 | 8:39 am
    Photo A Day – 7-23-14 – The Bay The post Daily Photo 15 – July 26, 2014 appeared first on Stories For The Masses.
  • Daily Photo 14 – July 25, 2014

    Mike Manz
    25 Jul 2014 | 8:36 am
    Photo A Day – 7-23-14 – Candy Man The post Daily Photo 14 – July 25, 2014 appeared first on Stories For The Masses.
  • How I Went Portable and Learned to Love the Thumb Drive

    Mike Manz
    24 Jul 2014 | 8:52 am
    A little something about my workspace/workflow today. Circumstances conspired, recently, to put me in a bit of an awkward situation. We moved house a few months ago, and in the new place I don’t have an office. My office computer ended up in the living room, connected to the TV and serving primarily as a media server. As you can… (more...) The post How I Went Portable and Learned to Love the Thumb Drive appeared first on Stories For The Masses.
  • Daily Photo 13 – July 24, 2014

    Mike Manz
    24 Jul 2014 | 8:34 am
    Photo A Day – 7-23-14 – Rhythmic Roofs The post Daily Photo 13 – July 24, 2014 appeared first on Stories For The Masses.
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    Risingshadow - Science Fiction & Fantasy

  • A review of Shane Berryhill's Bad Mojo

    19 Jul 2014 | 2:04 am
    Shane Berryhill's Bad Mojo will be published by Ragnarok Publications in July 2014. Information about Shane Berryhill: Shane Berryhill is a novelist and comic book writer. His work has been praised by Publishers Weekly, NPR, NBC, Wired Magazine, Horror World, and others. He's been a guest and speaker at events ranging from the National Council of English Teachers conference to San Diego Comic Con. Bad Mojo is Shane's first urban fantasy novel featuring Zora Banks. He is also the author of The Adventures of Chance Fortune series from Tor, Dragon Island, The Long Silent Night (A Jack…
  • CONTEST/GIVEAWAY: Tim Marquitz

    18 Jul 2014 | 7:30 am
    CONTEST/GIVEAWAY: TIM MARQUITZ Tim Marquitz (the author of the Demon Squad series) has a contest/giveaway going on: $40 Gift Card to Amazon, B&N, or Starbucks (winner's choice) The entire seven book Demon Squad series (e-book) 3 e-copies of Armageddon Bound (BK 1 of Demon Squad) This contest/giveaway ends on September 1st, 2014. Click here to participate in this contest/giveaway: a Rafflecopter giveaway About the author Tim Marquitz is the author of the Demon Squad series, the Blood War Trilogy, co-author of the Dead West series, as well as several standalone books, and numerous anthology…
  • An interview with Betsy Dornbusch

    14 Jul 2014 | 10:32 pm
    Risingshadow has had the honour of interviewing Betsy Dornbusch. Betsy Dornbusch is the author of a dozen short stories, three novellas, and two novels. She also is an editor with the speculative fiction magazine Electric Spec and the longtime proprietress of Sex Scenes at Starbucks. AN INTERVIEW WITH BETSY DORNBUSCH Read More...
  • A review of Michael W. Garza's The Last Infection

    14 Jul 2014 | 7:45 am
    Michael W. Garza's The Last Infection was published by Severed Press in July 2014. Information about Michael W. Garza: Michael W. Garza often finds himself wondering where his inspiration will come from next and in what form his imagination will bring it to life. The outcomes regularly surprise him and it's always his ambition to amaze those curious enough to follow him and take in those results. He encourages readers to peek at his latest work as well as the material he's published in the past. He sincerely hopes that everyone will find something that astonishes, surprises, or simply scares…
  • A review of Betsy Dornbusch's Exile

    11 Jul 2014 | 12:28 pm
    Betsy Dornbusch's Exile was published by Night Shade Books (Start Publishing) in January 2013. Information about Betsy Dornbusch: Betsy Dornbusch is the author of a dozen short stories, three novellas, and two novels. She also is an editor with the speculative fiction magazine Electric Spec and the longtime proprietress of Sex Scenes at Starbucks. Information about Exile: Draken vae Khellian, bastard cousin of the Monoean King, had risen far from his ignominious origins, becoming both a Bowrank Commander and a member of the Crown’s Black Guard. But when he is falsely condemned for the…
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    On Starships and Dragonwings

  • Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews eARC {4 Stars}

    28 Jul 2014 | 4:53 am
    Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews is the seventh in the Kate Daniels series and things are seriously heating up. After the insane emotional torment of the previous book, Magic Rises, Magic Breaks is a bit heavier on adventure on less on dehydrating you through crying, though of course now we know that no one is safe. Kate and Curran continue to develop as strong characters, and I especially liked that Kate once again had to figure things out without Curran’s assistance for a while. I think my favorite part about Magic Breaks, however, is the short story at the end, which is from…
  • Updates from the Lair 7/27/14

    27 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Updates from the Lair is my weekly wrap-up post that includes what happened in my real life, what I’ve been reading, my posts from the week, and what I’m thinking about reading next week (and would love your advice on!).  Whew, I’m back from three weeks straight of traveling. I got back into town on Wednesday and went to a doctor’s appointment on Thursday for my back which was a bit depressing: I need another MRI because my EMG returned abnormal nerve responses in both legs and I need to go to another specialist an hour away for a surgery consultation. It sounds like…
  • The House of the Four Winds Giveaway! (US/CAN)

    26 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    The House of the Four Winds Giveaway I just finished The House of the Four Winds last week because I absolutely could not resist that gorgeous cover. You’ll have to wait a couple more weeks for my review, but know that it was a very enjoyable swashbuckling adventure ;-). You do not, however, have to wait to enter this awesome giveaway courtesy of Tor!  The rulers of tiny, impoverished Swansgaard have twelve daughters and one son. While the prince’s future is assured, his twelve sisters must find their own fortunes.Disguising herself as Clarence, a sailor, Princess Clarice intends to…
  • Sci-fi and Fantasy Friday {ARCs and $5 Giftcards Weekly!}

    25 Jul 2014 | 4:00 am
    Link-up Your Sci-fi and Fantasy Reviews and Giveaways! I’m a huge sci-fi and fantasy fan, to the point that that is really all I read anymore. Therefore, I decided to start a weekly feature where I get all of you to gather the sf/f reviews and giveaways you’ve published and found so that we can all discover new books, blogs, and giveaways in our favorite genres! It’s been another absolutely nuts week for me lovelies, and I’m so sorry about being behind on comments. It isn’t that I don’t love talking to you, and I will be replying to every single one as soon…
  • The House of the Four Winds by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory eARC {3.5 Stars}

    24 Jul 2014 | 4:23 am
    The House of the Four Winds by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory is a swash-buckling, girl-disguised-as-boy fantasy adventure that is mostly what you would expect from that description. I was hooked by the prologue immediately and found the mix of spooky magic and adventure on the sea entertaining if not shockingly original. If you’re looking for a fantasy that blows tropes out of the water, this isn’t the book you’re looking for. However, if you’re looking for a fun read and enjoy plots where the heroine is disguised as a guy but then falls for her guy friend, you are…
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    ATG Reviews

  • Lucy Film Review

    The World Weary
    25 Jul 2014 | 2:14 am
    Fairies Wear BootsScarlett Johansson is hot shit these days. Her smiling (or unsmiling) face is just about damn near everywhere. As a result of this, she has been cast as the ideal woman in just about every film she’s been in over the past five years. Or perhaps she was already the ideal woman and that’s why her face is now everywhere… it’s a chicken/egg type of thing… Anyways, whether she’s the ideal sexy assassin, the ideal lure for unsuspecting humans, or the ideal Jersey girl, she’s come to represent the epitome of womanhood in film. Now, Luc…
  • Magician: Apprentice Book Review

    24 Jul 2014 | 10:00 am
    Riftwar Saga Book OneBuy on Amazon!Raymond E. Feist’s Riftwar Saga is another fantasy trilogy that’s been split into four books. The split occurs in the first book, Magician, which was split into Magician: Apprentice and Magician: Master.Riftwar is a series that is rooted in traditional Tolkienesque fantasy: an ordinary orphan becomes a powerful figure in a war against evil.  What surprised me was how this book could have easily deviated from traditional fantasy story structure. Unfortunately every time the opportunity arises to take the series in a different direction, Feist…
  • The Magician King Book Review

    21 Jul 2014 | 10:00 am
    Magicians Book Two(Spoilers for The Magicians are below).Buy on Amazon!You can expect more of the same with Lev Grossman’s sequel, The Magician King: cold condescending humor, a bleak outlook on living life, and the jarring juxtaposition between children’s fantasy and adult realities.  Returning to Fillory, and even Earth for a time being, Quentin Coldwater and the other kings and queens of Fillory are whisked away on a new adventure, one that challenges a lot of the thought constructs that are frequently found in fantasy stories.I found the sequel to be a little less sentimental…
  • The Purge: Anarchy Film Review

    The World Weary
    18 Jul 2014 | 5:40 pm
    Helter SkelterThis review will feature both spoilers for The Purge and, in a specially marked section, spoilers for The Purge: Anarchy.What is it with this week and films that like to have more than one plot? We had Doomsday, that though it could be three movies in one, The Descent, from the same director, that went from adventure film to dark horror and worked, and now, the sequel to the home invasion stinker, The Purge, The Purge: Anarchy.A year after Queen Cersei’s family was massacred during the annual Purge, the NFFA (New Founding Fathers of America) plans to continue in the…
  • The Descent Film Review

    17 Jul 2014 | 10:00 am
    I’m An English Teacher, Not Fucking Tomb RaiderBuy on Amazon!The Descent was a pleasant surprise.  The word pleasant of course needs to be taken with a grain of salt.  This is the perfect example of a deceptive movie, it starts in one direction as a spelunking styled cave exploration thriller, and then completely goes off the rails and turns into disturbing horror flick.Breaking a lot of the commonly established conventions in horror films, The Descent is truly one of the genre’s best, as it resists stereotypical conventions. It’s non-relenting scenes of suspense, crazily…
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  • Slow Burn - Slow Flow

    15 Jul 2014 | 5:16 am
    I think zombi-lovers can find the idea of this book interesting. As it starts you're already in the full story. Though I could say the first chapter runs too fast and the happening take place faster than I expected.Zed goes to his mother's place and finds his stepdad eating his mother. Then he attacks Zed and bites him, but the interesting flow of this story is that Zed doesn't turn into zombi, he's some kind of immune. I can't say for sure, as the first book doesn't bring me a clue who Zed has turned. And then everything begins as in every zombi-story - the disease starts spreading and…
  • 99 Cent Discount

    4 Jul 2014 | 4:37 am
    What if you wake up in an unknown town your memories wiped from your head?Jonathan is alone having no clue who and what he is, where he has come from and where he should go.Empty streets, old houses, the town seems abandoned. There's no one to ask for help. Jonathan wanders the town in search of any sign of life. Soon he comes to the realization that he's moments from death as absolutely evil dwells in the town seeking fresh souls to suck up. The seemingly dead town is only outwardly empty.Who is he? Who brought him here? With a female resident - Elizabeth, Jonathan has to work his way…
  • The Fog - If you want something different

    3 Jul 2014 | 2:03 am
    I found something which is worth to read - story which isn't like the others. There are a lot of books nowadays with the same meaning surrounded by different heroes. The fog wasn't like them.Here we get in the story with an earthquake taking place in a little village. From the cracks on the ground rise yellowish fog, outwardly not dangerous, but it has intended to kill, the most dangerous enemy of mankind comes out from under the ground.Nobody realizes that at first and the fog travels over England bringing death. Everybody who breathes it, becomes insane, there is something in the fog…
  • Abducted by T.R. Ragan - Reviewed

    31 May 2014 | 5:27 am
    When I picked up this book I was expecting something new, but instead I found disappointments. First, I had a strange sensation that the FBI agents in this book look stupid idiots. They are agents who protect the president of The United States, how could they behave like they were described in this book. And they are FBI agents, Federal, and as far as I know those agents don't wast time to find killers or any swindler if that person doesn't mean any danger to the nation, to the country. This is the job of detectives and the police.But, let's put all these aside. The story flows, though there…

    28 May 2014 | 3:25 am
    Captivating and mystical story Wrath of Michael - one of the books from Shade of Light series - is FREE for today and tomorrow.This story is a new twist of the beginning of life. The angel who has changed the course of life isn't going to stop here. For him, it isn't enough to seize life on Earth and he craves more, he craves to bring Heaven down.Archangel Michael has doubts, he may not to be able to protect Heaven and the Golden Gates will fall. But he can't just stop fighting and the help comes from the most unexpected fallen angel.If you still hasn't gotten this book you can do it for…
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