SciFi & Fantasy Novels

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  • Babylon 5: Soul Hunter

    No Fear of the Future
    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    17 Apr 2014 | 7:28 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: The aliens on board Babylon 5 go into a frenzy when an alien known as a Soul Hunter arrives on the station. Soul Hunters have a religious belief that the souls of important figures should be captured and preserved at the time of death. Dr. Stephen Franklin…
  • The Four Levels of Discrimination (and You) (and Me, Too)

    John Scalzi
    17 Apr 2014 | 9:21 am
    I’ve been talking about sexism recently — my own and others — and I have to say I’ve found it increasingly exasperating to see the massively defensive response of “not all men are sexist” that inevitably follows. One, because it’s wrong (more on that in a bit), and two, because the more I see it, the more it’s obvious that it’s a derail, as in, “Holy shit any discussion of sexism makes me uncomfortable so I want to make it clear I am not sexist so I’ll just demand recognition that not all men are sexist so I can be lumped in…
  • The Spider is on the loose!

    Yellowed Perils
    15 Apr 2014 | 7:00 am is offering a free Kindle copy of its […]
  • 3 pulp questions: Walker Martin

    Yellowed Perils
    17 Apr 2014 | 7:00 am
    If you read any of the popular pulp newsgroups at Yahoo […]
  • College of Sidekicks and Secondary Characters – Commencement Address

    SF Novelists
    Alma Alexander
    5 Apr 2014 | 4:59 pm
    Dear graduating class, As a writer, as someone who was there at your emergence, I am so very happy to see you. To know that you are out there. That you exist. Because – make no mistake – in a world that seems to be geared only towards superstardom, without the foundation of you there is nothing at all. There can be no superstars without the support of a context – a context that you and only you can provide. I can’t tell from here why all of you are in this place. You may have ended up at this particular institution of learning simply because your applications for the more upmarket and…
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  • Game of Thrones: A Pop-Up Guide to Westeros

    17 Apr 2014 | 9:17 am
    Game of Thrones: A Pop-Up Guide to Westeros By Matthew Reinhart (Designer) & Michael Komarck (Illustrator) Published by Transworld/Bantam and Insight editions, 10th April 2014 ISBN: 978 0 593 07345 2 Review by Mark Yon As Season Four of the TV series begins on television, it must be said that the enthusiasm for Game of […]
  • Defenders by Will McIntosh

    Rob B
    16 Apr 2014 | 6:02 am
    Alien invasion stories have been a staple of science fiction since the genre began.  War is a great catalyst for technological innovation. These two linked ideas / themes come together in Will McIntosh’s Defenders. In the near future, Earth is attacked by the Luyten, giant alien starfish intent on taking over the world and making […]
  • What is epic fantasy by Freya Robertson

    15 Apr 2014 | 3:00 am
    Hi, I’m Freya. I’m a writer, and when people ask me what kind of books I write, I tell them “epic fantasy”. Various replies I’ve had to this statement have been, “What, like Twilight?” “You mean that Arthur C. Clarke stuff?” and my personal favourite, “Like The Wizard of Oz?” Well, they’re kind of all […]
  • K.C. May News – A new heroine is born

    12 Apr 2014 | 4:05 pm
    We wanted to share this with you from K.C. May’s latest newsletter. The Mindstream Chronicles I’ve been working on a new fantasy story in a new land with a different sort of magic — the ability to see the Truth. Imagine if there were no need for lawyers or juries because the judges themselves could […]
  • Pewtory the Lesser Bard part 35 – Masker’s Ball

    12 Apr 2014 | 12:18 am
    Part 35 of Rob Donovan’s free serialised story set in the same world of Frindoth as his newly released book “Ritual of the Stones”. In this story we follow the journey of Pewtory the Lesser bard as he travels to Lilyon to witness the Ritual.    Read Part 1   Pewtory the Lesser Bard part 35 – Masker’s […]
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    SF Site

  • A Brief Guide to Stephen King by Paul Simpson

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    This is a nice, pocket size paperback. Paul Simpson breaks each part of King's life into six parts and nineteen chapters starting with "The Life of Stephen King" where we read about his early life from him first selling his horror stories to magazines to getting his first novel published.
  • Galaxy's Edge #7

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Notable authors such as C.J.Cherryh, Elizabeth Bear, Robert Sheckley, Alexei Panshin, and Mercedes Lackey have a place in this seventh issue. Galaxy's Edge also has fiction by new writers, Lou J.Berger, Martin L. Shoemaker, Brad R. Torgersen and Steve Cameron, while Gregory Benford runs his own science column, Paul Cook has his own review column of the latest scrutinised books, and Barry Malzberg writes about anything he wants to in his column and gets away with it, so Mike Resnick says.
  • Transcendental by James Gunn

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Here is a science fiction novel that's one part Golden Age SF and one part The Canterbury Tales, held together with a dash of Murder on the Orient Express. The historical setting is the Golden Age part. It's the multi-species, space-faring galactic civilization, with human beings as the unwelcome newcomers. That scenario is a classic one in SF going back to the pulp days.
  • The Suicide Exhibition by Justin Richards

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    The basic premise is one that has been richly mined before, but there's still plenty of room for more, if it's done well. Set early in WWII, it begins with a foiled incursion, predicted by an obscure branch of British Intelligence. Known as Station Z, they are grappling with the unknown in the form of occasional incursions into British air space by unidentified aircraft, at first thought to be German secret weapons. Reports from behind enemy lines, and more esoteric sources, also tell of the Ubermensch, or German superman; a living weapon to be deployed against the allies.
  • Super Stories of Heroes & Villains by edited by Claude Lalumiere

    30 Mar 2014 | 4:00 am
    All of the stories are directly or indirectly connected to the worlds of comics, pulp fiction and larger than life heroes or villains. There are twenty-eight stories in total, some of which are interconnected, with the majority being stand-alone pieces. Well known authors abound, including Mike Mignola, Christopher Golden, Kim Newman, Gene Wolfe, Tim Pratt, and George R.R. Martin. Eschewing any attempt to present a cohesive theme, the editor instead selects a wide spectrum of styles and themes.
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    SF Novelists

  • Seeing the Invisible

    Marie Brennan
    16 Apr 2014 | 11:22 am
    Fiction is supposed to be about seeing through other people’s eyes for a little while, experiencing their lives and coming away changed. If you don’t see those people in the first place, though . . . how will they ever make it into the story? Jim Hines has put together a ebook collection called Invisible, which began life as a series of guests posts on his blog. He invited people to talk about representation — not in general, theoretical terms, but highly personal ones, testimonials about moments in their lives where seeing people like them on the page (or not seeing them)…
  • College of Sidekicks and Secondary Characters – Commencement Address

    Alma Alexander
    5 Apr 2014 | 4:59 pm
    Dear graduating class, As a writer, as someone who was there at your emergence, I am so very happy to see you. To know that you are out there. That you exist. Because – make no mistake – in a world that seems to be geared only towards superstardom, without the foundation of you there is nothing at all. There can be no superstars without the support of a context – a context that you and only you can provide. I can’t tell from here why all of you are in this place. You may have ended up at this particular institution of learning simply because your applications for the more upmarket and…
  • The Skill List Project: Comfort in Your Own Skin

    James Alan Gardner
    29 Mar 2014 | 5:53 pm
    This is another post in The Skill List Project: an attempt to list all the skills involved in writing and selling fiction, particularly science fiction and fantasy. In recent posts, I’ve been winding down, wondering how much I have left to say. However, I think there’s at least one more skill that needs to be on the list: being comfortable in your own skin. Yes, It’s a Skill Young children are comfortable with themselves; the youngest are incapable of being self-conscious. Their brains haven’t developed far enough to conceive of any separation between themselves and…
  • What Does It Mean to “Win” at Writing?

    David B. Coe
    25 Mar 2014 | 8:35 am
    This past weekend I was on a Science Fiction and Fantasy panel at the Virginia Festival of the Book.  We had a large audience (take that, mainstream literature snobs!!) and a lively discussion, much of which was centered on changes in the industry and the financial challenges that today’s writers face in an increasingly competitive and uncertain marketplace. I don’t have the space in a single post to discuss all of those challenges.  Those of us who write professionally are well aware of them, and those who are looking toward a career in writing should familiarize themselves…
  • Keep Calm and Carry On

    Marie Brennan
    16 Mar 2014 | 3:00 am
    There’s been a series of ongoing explosions within the science fiction and fantasy community lately over a variety of interconnected topics, most of them related to gender in one fashion or another. Inflammatory articles, poorly thought-out petitions, harassers at cons, etc. It’s easy to look at this stuff and say, “Oh my god what is wrong with fandom/the publishing industry. They’re terrible and I give up on them.” Except, of course, that it isn’t fandom or the publishing industry. The same thing is going on in a variety of other fields, like the tech…
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    James Maxey - Jawbone of an Ass

  • Shamocracy

    30 Mar 2014 | 9:33 am
    American politics seems to be in stasis. It's not quite gridlock, where nothing gets done at all. Instead, its government by autopilot. The bureaucracy continues to spit out rules, budgets continue to grow via continuing resolutions, and our foreign policy seems locked into a pattern of daily reminding us that the rest of the world is going to do whatever the hell it wants to do and we have no
  • Where I want to be at 60

    3 Mar 2014 | 7:42 am
    I wasn't happy with my life when I turned 30. I was divorced, stuck in a job I hated, had too much debt, no savings to speak of, hadn't published a book or even a story, was living in an apartment with two roommates, and generally felt like I hadn't accomplished much. Curiously, I was really angry with my 20 year old self for doing so much to ruin 30 year old me. The younger James hadn't made any
  • Snow days

    16 Feb 2014 | 9:28 am
    When I was a kid, I looked forward to a snow so I could stay home and play. Now, I keep my fingers crossed for a snow day so I can stay home and work. I finished the third draft of my latest novel Friday, pretty much two weeks ahead of my personal schedule because I had a day off two weeks ago due to snow, then two days this week. I normally squeeze in an hour or two in the evenings to write.
  • 500 days on My Fitness Pal

    18 Jan 2014 | 12:23 pm
    Today marks my 500th day on My Fitness Pal. Cheryl and I ran 5k on the Al Beuhler Trail in Durham, the first time we've done 5k on hilly terrain. Our previous runs of this length have been done on the Ocanneechee Speedway, which is completely flat. The hills didn't really affect my time. I still made the run in a little over 50 minutes, though it certainly felt a lot longer than running the
  • 5k Achieved!

    5 Jan 2014 | 8:29 am
    So, when I said Cheryl and I would be building up to run 5k, I didn't think I'd hit the goal before the end of the first week of the new year. But, we decided just to go for it this morning, and, holy cow, we did it! I'm again struck by similarities between the skills I've developed as a novel writer and skills I'm now using to become more fit. Novel writing requires lots of small, incremental
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    Side-Show Freaks

  • Camila Fernandes wins the Second Hydra Competition

    14 Apr 2014 | 6:47 am
    With three female finalists and over one hundred and fifty entries, the second edition improves upon the success of the first...Once again, the judges of the Hydra Competition received stories published by Brazilian authors during the last two calendar years (2011 and 2012) and chose three finalists to send to author Orson Scott Card, who defined the winner. This time around, the chosen tale was “The Other Bank of the River” by Camila Fernandes, announced last weekend during the Fantastic Literature Odyssey III, an annual convention held in Porto Alegre. The story will be published in…
  • The Sound of Death, by Gareth D Jones

    1 Apr 2014 | 4:08 am
    The Sound of Death started life as a 600 word story in response to a flash fiction challenge – basically just the opening scene of this alien murder mystery. Right from the start I wanted the cause of death and the scene of the crime to be as non-human as possible. As I started expanding the story I realised this principle had to apply to the whole society, their social interactions and motivations. It was soon clear that everything I had learned from watching several seasons of CSI was also useless. I needed to invent entirely new forensic procedures and investigative methodology. I found…
  • High-Tech Fairies and the Pandora Perplexity, by Alex Shvartsman

    5 Mar 2014 | 4:39 am
    It started on Twitter. My friend Sylvia Wrigley posted something along the lines of “I’m having a difficult time explaining Cthulhu to Grandma.” To which I responded by saying that “Explaining Cthulhu to Grandma” would make a great short story title. Sylvia was kind enough to let me have it, and I came up with a family-run magical pawn shop (loosely inspired by the History Channel’s Pawn Stars), and named the protagonist Sylvia, as a thank-you to my friend for inspiring the idea. The resulting story was one of the funniest I have written, and I was very proud that it became my…
  • Underwater Restorations, by Jeffrey A. Ballard

    20 Feb 2014 | 3:58 am
    “Underwater Restorations” was born out my love of all things underwater.  As a kid, I used to spend hours snorkeling in Keuka Lake in upstate New York, until I was blue and my father had to pull me out for safety.  I often wished that our house was underwater and imagined how much fun it would be to snorkel and dive down into it—of course, I wasn’t a homeowner then, and now it isn’t something I would wish at all. Right before I wrote “Underwater Restorations,” I had been attempting to write literary fiction and came to the decision that it wasn’t for me. …
  • Into the Desolation, by Catherine Wells

    10 Feb 2014 | 5:34 am
    There are stories that come to you complete, and there are stories that you have no idea are there until they play themselves out. "Into the Desolation" was definitely one of the latter. I started off in third person past tense, as I usually do, and I thought the story was going to be all about the Imogene character and her adventures in the Time Wastes. Gus was just a tool, a point-of-view for the reader to see Imogene. But then his voice began to take over, and I realized the story would be better told with his vocabulary and rhythm, and that was first person present tense. I'm…
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    KRAD's Inaccurate Guide to Life

  • Friday fanfare: "Birthday"

    18 Apr 2014 | 6:53 am
    What better song to post on my birthday than this classic from the Beatles?
  • I say it's my birthday....

    18 Apr 2014 | 6:47 am
    Today I'm 45. I'm a hit single, with a B-side, and that little yellow thing in the middle that prevents sliding around the turntable.Or I'm half a right angle. Or something.Anyhow, most of my birthday will be spent writing because deadlines don't give a shit that it's my birthday, but I will be festivizing at one of my favorite restaurants -- Mario's on Arthur Avenue -- with family this evening.Thanks to everyone who has wished me well on Facebook and Twitter and in private messages. I have the best friends, family, and fans in the world, and I wouldn't trade any of you for anything. *big-ass…
  • triple play and triples

    17 Apr 2014 | 6:23 pm
    Almost exactly a year ago, the Yankees turned a very bizarre triple play against the Orioles with CC Sabathia pitching.Tonight, against the Rays, with CC pitching once again, the Yanks turned a more traditional triple play. It was started by Yangervis Solarte, a 26-year-old rookie who came out of nowhere in spring training to take over the everyday third base job, and finished by Scott Sizemore in his first-ever professional game at first base. Gotta love it...Not only that, but in the top of the inning, the Yanks hit two triples. It's triple day!
  • midweek music (a day late): "Bring Him Back Home (Nelson Mandela)"

    17 Apr 2014 | 8:12 am
    Back in 1987, Paul Simon promoted his Graceland album -- much of which was a celebration of South African music -- by touring with several South African musicians, among them the a cappella group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, guitarist Ray Phiri, and the great performers Miriam Makeba and Hugh Masekela. One of the songs Masekela (a great trumpeter) did was "Bring Him Back Home (Nelson Mandela)," a song urging the release from prison of Nelson Mandela. The song is, of course, dated, which is what's so awesome about it -- the song actually worked, Mandela was released, apartheid ended, and Mandela…
  • progress.....

    16 Apr 2014 | 9:46 pm
    The tie-in novel is proceeding apace. I'm behind where I want to be, but the book will be done on the 28th. Dammit.I've also spent time this week showing my friend Jenn around NYC. Today we were all touristy and went to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, and I also took her to the New York Public Library to show her the children's book exhibit (mostly so she could see the stuffed animals that A.A. Milne based the Winnie the Pooh stories on) and Grand Central to do some shopping.She's catching a 3am train home, so I'll be driving her to Penn Station soon. Meanwhile, I write…
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    Robert J. Sawyer

  • Paperback of Red Planet Blues

    31 Mar 2014 | 9:40 am
    The US and Canadian paperback editions of Red Planet Blues are now out (the British paperback comes out next week on Thursday, April 10). “A cause for celebration; a tour de force.” —AnalogRobert J. Sawyer online:Website • Facebook • Twitter • Email
  • Skylark Award

    3 Mar 2014 | 9:41 am
    I’m absolutely thrilled to be the 2014 winner of the Edward E. Smith Memorial Award for Imaginative Fiction (the Skylark), presented annually since 1966 by the New England Science Fiction Association (NESFA). The award is given to a person who “has contributed significantly to science fiction, both through work in the field and by exemplifying the personal qualities which made the late ‘Doc’ Smith well-loved by those who knew him.” The gorgeous trophy includes a very powerful magnifying glass, in honor of Doc Smith’s famed Lensman series of novels. The…
  • Iterations ebook!

    11 Feb 2014 | 11:44 am
    For the next 17 days, until February 28, for the first time ever, my first short-story collection Iterations and Other Stories is available as an ebook, along with five other great books by the likes of Kevin J. Anderson and Kristine Kathryn Rusch — all six books for just $2.99 from Iterations features an overall introduction by James Alan Gardner and notes on each story by me. For all titles, the bundle includes both ePub (Kobo, Nook, Sony, iBooks) and Mobi (Kindle) formats. Here’s the table of contents for Iterations (which contains 22 short stories):…
  • Star Trek’s black guest stars, 1966-1967

    9 Feb 2014 | 9:58 am
    Apropos of yesterday’s discussion of mentioning race in fiction, I have a complete set of the first season scripts of the original Star Trek, and decided to have a look to see if the major speaking parts played by black guest performers in the filmed episodes were specified in the scripts as to be played by black actors. Here are the four such episodes from the first season, in the order in which they were produced (my thanks to Trek Core for the wonderful screen captures; click them for larger versions): Of course, the role identified in the script for “The Man Trap” as…
  • More on mentioning race in fiction

    8 Feb 2014 | 7:31 am
    I’ve written before about whether authors should feel nervous about specifying the race or skin colour of characters. My position is simple: you either do it for all characters or none; neither position is racist. What’s racist is only specifying it when deviates from some assumed norm — for instance, when books tell you if a character is black, but leave unstated that other characters are white, because, y’know, normal folk are white, so you only have to mention it when someone isn’t normal. A fascinating example is the description of the character of Vince in…
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  • Today’s New Books and ARCs, 4/17/14

    John Scalzi
    17 Apr 2014 | 1:48 pm
    Some lovely books and ARCs in this stack — and now I want to know which look desirable to you. Share in the comments!
  • Hungarian Cover of The Human Division

    John Scalzi
    17 Apr 2014 | 11:26 am
    Keeping once again in the basic template established for the OMW books by the publisher. I am assuming that these two gentlemen are Harry Wilson and Hart Schmidt. In which case, they’re kinda more dreamy than I imagined them. Which is fine!
  • The Four Levels of Discrimination (and You) (and Me, Too)

    John Scalzi
    17 Apr 2014 | 9:21 am
    I’ve been talking about sexism recently — my own and others — and I have to say I’ve found it increasingly exasperating to see the massively defensive response of “not all men are sexist” that inevitably follows. One, because it’s wrong (more on that in a bit), and two, because the more I see it, the more it’s obvious that it’s a derail, as in, “Holy shit any discussion of sexism makes me uncomfortable so I want to make it clear I am not sexist so I’ll just demand recognition that not all men are sexist so I can be lumped in…
  • More On the Limited Signed Print Edition of Unlocked From Subterranean

    John Scalzi
    16 Apr 2014 | 1:29 pm
    Subterranean Press has has more news of the signed, limited edition of the “Unlocked” novella — and if you pre-order in the next couple of days, US shipping will be free. Free, I tell you! SubPress does excellent versions of my work, and this one will be no exception — I’ve already seen the layout and it’s lovely. Remember that the printed version of “Unlocked” actually is limited, as in, once this signed edition is all gone, there will be no more. So if you want one, move fast. Here’s the pre-order page. Also, for those of you interested…
  • I Woke Up Late and My Brain Is Mush, So While I Reboot It Here’s 25 Minutes of Cat Vines

    John Scalzi
    16 Apr 2014 | 8:20 am
    You kids have fun with this. I’ll be back later.
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    Magical Words

  • Not-So-Risky Business: Book Promotion on a Budget

    18 Apr 2014 | 3:00 am
    When I meet new writers or writers looking to get published, I get asked often what advice I could impart; and pretty consistently, I disappoint because my advice is rarely on the craft. I usually go into the business side of books. Once upon a time, this was someone else’s job apparently. I’ve watched a lot of new authors stumble and fall — face first — in this respect, and watched seasoned, experienced writers stubbornly ignore this side of the publishing industry. It’s a different world now, my fellow writers. It would be nice to think you can follow in the footsteps of Uncle…
  • Brandy Schillace: Balancing Academic Work and Writing Life

    17 Apr 2014 | 2:00 am
    Rogue Scholar. ​I like the image this phrase conjures: the highway white with moonlight, the carriage rattling and banging as the driver nods in his seat…and scholarly rogues riding from shadowed enclaves, brandishing the sharpened steel of academic rigor.  It doesn’t quite work that way—but there’s a shade of truth here all the same. Academia can be both competition and battlefield. It requires enormous sacrifice of time and energy, and it steals away hours as deftly as any highwayman. In a dwindling job market, universities demand more and give less, and the PhD lucky enough to…
  • Writing Your Passions

    16 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    Or — Writing What You Know(Or why I can’t write erotica.)  My last post contained a comment that set off a heated discussion back channel. Apparently, following word count guidelines is blasphemous. You don’t write for the market, you write for yourself.  I tend to agree that it’s hard to write for the market. Mainly because it’s really hard to forecast what the market will be. But as far as following guidelines? It seems to me that it’s in your best interest to do as much as you can to help your story get sold. There are certainly exceptions that prove the rule, still, why…
  • On the Writing Life (Nine Novels in Eight Months, or Insanity)

    Mindy Klasky
    15 Apr 2014 | 3:00 am
    Several months ago, I told folks here on Magical Words that I was going to write nine novels for publication in 2014, publishing one a month from April through December. I lied.  I’m writing nine novels for publication in 2014, publishing them all in eight months.  Perfect Pitch debuted on March 31, and the ninth novel, Always Right will appear on November 4, 2014.  The second Diamond Brides novel, Catching Hell, debuted on April 13.  That “double dip” — two books in one month — was designed to bolster sales for the series, to let readers who liked the first…
  • Gail Z. Martin: My So-Called Writing Life

    14 Apr 2014 | 3:00 am
    So the prompt says “how you live and write and stay sane.” Hmm. I’m not sure that I do. (Stay sane, that is.) This year, 2014, is turning out to be a happy and challenging year. Happy because I’m fortunate enough to have two new novels out—Reign of Ash from Orbit Books (April) in epic fantasy, and Deadly Curiosities from Solaris Books (June) in urban fantasy. A new steampunk novel is under contract with Solaris, due out in 2015. I’m in at least seven anthologies (!) and more seem to keep cropping up. I bring out a new short story on ebook each month and I’m working on a novella.
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    No Fear of the Future

  • Babylon 5: Soul Hunter

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    17 Apr 2014 | 7:28 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: The aliens on board Babylon 5 go into a frenzy when an alien known as a Soul Hunter arrives on the station. Soul Hunters have a religious belief that the souls of important figures should be captured and preserved at the time of death. Dr. Stephen Franklin…
  • Vanishing Surveillance

    Chris N. Brown
    11 Apr 2014 | 4:25 am
    This. (At my Tumblr, which is where I'm doing most of my blogging these days. Come on over!)
  • Babylon 5: Midnight on the Firing Line

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    20 Feb 2014 | 1:27 pm
    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: A Narn sneak attack on the small Centauri agricultural colony of Ragesh 3 touches off a round of serious diplomatic tension aboard Babylon 5. The Narn ambassador, G'Kar, initially feigns ignorance, which infuriates Centauri ambassado Londo once he learns the…
  • Babylon 5: The Gathering

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    10 Feb 2014 | 9:56 am
    I've been possessed of a desire to re-watch the entire Babylon 5 television series of late. I have not seen a single episode since that groundbreaking series completed its tumultuous run, and am curious as to how well the epic, 5-year story arc holds up more than a decade later. But to up the ante, I've invited my teenage daughter, Calista, to watch it with me. She was just a few days old when the final episode aired back in 1998, so we'll get an unbiased take from a hard-to-please Doctor Who fan who is fairly well-read when it comes to modern YA science fiction. Does J. Michael Straczynski…
  • Requiem for a Muscle Car

    Chris N. Brown
    23 Nov 2013 | 6:20 am
    You could only find the Impala by accident. It was way off trail, in the back part of a wetland tucked between an urban river and the woods behind a bunch of light factories. They were the kind of woods and wetlands no one is really meant to explore, made from volunteer trees grown up between the chunks of concrete and demolition debris dumped in this downzoned stretch of interstitial wilderness at what once was the edge of town. The negative space of the metropolis, where nature fills in the gaps and wild animals feel free to roam in the absence of human gazes. When you stumbled across it as…
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    SF Novelists

  • Seeing the Invisible

    Marie Brennan
    16 Apr 2014 | 11:22 am
    Fiction is supposed to be about seeing through other people’s eyes for a little while, experiencing their lives and coming away changed. If you don’t see those people in the first place, though . . . how will they ever make it into the story? Jim Hines has put together a ebook collection called Invisible, which began life as a series of guests posts on his blog. He invited people to talk about representation — not in general, theoretical terms, but highly personal ones, testimonials about moments in their lives where seeing people like them on the page (or not seeing them)…
  • College of Sidekicks and Secondary Characters – Commencement Address

    Alma Alexander
    5 Apr 2014 | 4:59 pm
    Dear graduating class, As a writer, as someone who was there at your emergence, I am so very happy to see you. To know that you are out there. That you exist. Because – make no mistake – in a world that seems to be geared only towards superstardom, without the foundation of you there is nothing at all. There can be no superstars without the support of a context – a context that you and only you can provide. I can’t tell from here why all of you are in this place. You may have ended up at this particular institution of learning simply because your applications for the more upmarket and…
  • The Skill List Project: Comfort in Your Own Skin

    James Alan Gardner
    29 Mar 2014 | 5:53 pm
    This is another post in The Skill List Project: an attempt to list all the skills involved in writing and selling fiction, particularly science fiction and fantasy. In recent posts, I’ve been winding down, wondering how much I have left to say. However, I think there’s at least one more skill that needs to be on the list: being comfortable in your own skin. Yes, It’s a Skill Young children are comfortable with themselves; the youngest are incapable of being self-conscious. Their brains haven’t developed far enough to conceive of any separation between themselves and…
  • What Does It Mean to “Win” at Writing?

    David B. Coe
    25 Mar 2014 | 8:35 am
    This past weekend I was on a Science Fiction and Fantasy panel at the Virginia Festival of the Book.  We had a large audience (take that, mainstream literature snobs!!) and a lively discussion, much of which was centered on changes in the industry and the financial challenges that today’s writers face in an increasingly competitive and uncertain marketplace. I don’t have the space in a single post to discuss all of those challenges.  Those of us who write professionally are well aware of them, and those who are looking toward a career in writing should familiarize themselves…
  • Keep Calm and Carry On

    Marie Brennan
    16 Mar 2014 | 3:00 am
    There’s been a series of ongoing explosions within the science fiction and fantasy community lately over a variety of interconnected topics, most of them related to gender in one fashion or another. Inflammatory articles, poorly thought-out petitions, harassers at cons, etc. It’s easy to look at this stuff and say, “Oh my god what is wrong with fandom/the publishing industry. They’re terrible and I give up on them.” Except, of course, that it isn’t fandom or the publishing industry. The same thing is going on in a variety of other fields, like the tech…
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  • More Lucius

    17 Apr 2014 | 5:16 pm
    I was looking at stuff about Lucius and was reminded of this letter.  He'd written it for his roommate, who'd wanted to meet me, for the roommate to give me at a convention:Dear Lisa,This is to introduce my friend and roommate.  He's a good guy, so sit down and have a drink with him if you've got a moment, OK?Y'know, I just realized that this could be some incredibly devious ploy utilized by some demented fan in order to get close to the object of his obsession, couldn't it.  All it would take is half an imagination, a passing familiarity with my chicken…
  • New Review at LOCUS ONLINE

    16 Apr 2014 | 5:29 pm
    I look at some vintage SF:
  • New Review at the B&NR

    15 Apr 2014 | 6:50 am
    A fine new novel about a space elevator:
  • Literary Map

    11 Apr 2014 | 10:33 am
    This is kind of fun -- it's an interactive map of the literary Bay Area, including booksellers, locations mentioned in novels, descriptions of the Bay Area, and pictures of authors.  I'd sent my picture in late so I didn't expect to be included, but I made it in anyway -- yay!  It does have some fairly obvious holes -- Robert Silverberg, John Shirley, Ayize Jama-Everett, Tad Williams, Madeline Robins... Well, maybe they sent their pictures in late.
  • New Review at the B&NR

    9 Apr 2014 | 1:46 pm
    KSR's newest!
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  • More MangaKast

    tate hallaway
    16 Apr 2014 | 8:22 am
    Mason and I recorded our sixth MangaKast and it's up for your enjoyment here: talk about Bleach 577, Ao no Exorcist 56, and Toriko 274... though a lot of it is teh stupid that comes from being awake way too early.  We have fun, though.  In fact, a large portion of this particular podcast is me laughing so hard I snort.
  • Mochas and Motorcycles!

    tate hallaway
    15 Apr 2014 | 9:15 am
    I might have been writing up to the very last minute, but that just means this newest installment of UnJust Cause is HOT off the press!You can read it here: UnJust Cause Part 4: Mochas and MotorcyclesIn this installment, Alex discovers that demons have a weakness for mochas.  Also, it seems that the sexy redhead werewolf biker, Mac, is stalking her!Seriously, what's not to love about a werewolf motorcycle gang??  Go check it out!  (Don't forget to leave a comment.)  Thanks!
  • Writing

    9 Apr 2014 | 12:55 pm
    I got together with Lyda and Naomi today and talked about Captain America, also about writing. I have been going through a bad patch, in which I envy other writers and feel bad about my writing career. Naomi pointed out that I have stories almost ready to go out and I am wasting time -- weeks and months -- tweeking them. They should go out the door. It's perfectly true that fiction does not sell till editors look at it, and most of my work sells sooner or later. I have no idea why I'm stalled right now. But the obvious thing to do -- as Naomi says -- is get the stories out.There are plenty of…
  • Cap 2

    9 Apr 2014 | 12:49 pm
    Lyda pointed out to me that she is doing all the posting on Wyrdsmiths. So here is a cross-post from my blog. I went to see Captain America 2 with three other Wyrdsmiths -- Lyda, Naomi and Sean -- and the following is my report:Well, now I have seen Captain America 2. I think I have used up a month's supply of adrenaline. Thus far, my favorite Marvel movies are Thor 1 and Captain America 1. But this movie is a fine mix of violence, paranoia and cynicism. I will say no more, for fear of spoiling the story for the two or three people who haven't seen CA # 2 yet.Note: Cap is never cynical, nor…
  • Five is Live

    tate hallaway
    9 Apr 2014 | 8:21 am
    MangaKast can be found here: is another project I could consider a failed experiment, but, in this case, I really don't.  Mason and I have limited expectations for it, for one.  We probably have three faithful listeners (which is probably actually one, since I play the edited version for Mason when he gets home from school.)  But, this is a totally different thing we're doing.  It's entirely for ourselves and we know it.  I get to bond with my son about something we both enjoy, and he gets to be a host…
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    Joe Abercrombie

  • Slight Delay

    Joe Abercrombie
    14 Apr 2014 | 1:07 am
    Sorry to report there’s going to be a very slight delay in the US publication of Half a King. Don’t panic! It’s only a week. Promotional, book selling thing, the book itself has been finished for some time now. So US publication moves back from 8th to 15th July. The UK publication date remains on the 3rd July. Can’t imagine either of those dates shifting at this point. On the upside, the sequel, Half the World, has gone down rather well with my editors so it looks like a February 2015 release is pretty much certain for that one. The plan is to release the final book,…
  • Hot Young Fantasists

    Joe Abercrombie
    11 Apr 2014 | 3:01 am
    Delighted to say that I got a quote for Half a King from some George RR Martin guy. Not familiar with his work myself but apparently he wrote some Game of Thrones thing which is quite popular at the moment… “Joe Abercrombie does it again. Half a King is another page-turner from Britain’s hottest young fantasist, a fast-paced tale of betrayal and revenge that grabbed me from page one and refused to let go.” In all seriousness, it’s always great to get a quote from a popular author, but George is one of very few living writers that I think had a big impact on the…
  • Extracts

    Joe Abercrombie
    28 Mar 2014 | 8:11 am
    Regular visitors may have noticed an extensive redesign of the site over the past few weeks, courtesy of the marvellous Darren Turpin, who actually built this site in the first place way back in the mists of time shortly after the fall of King Arthur.  Reflecting the leap forward in display technologies we have a wider, more informative format, new front page, more usefulization in the sidebaritude, far more content in the books sections, and, one hopes, slightly more frequent updating of this hear blog than has been going on over the last few months. But one other special bonus thing…
  • Breaking Bad

    Joe Abercrombie
    24 Mar 2014 | 8:16 am
    Phew. I have, of course, entirely missed the boat on this, as ever, and no doubt it’s all been said already and the Sauron’s eye of popular culture moved on to fresh pastures.  But I just saw the final episode of Breaking Bad last night, and felt the need to muse a little on this extraordinary show.  I’m going to try to avoid major spoilers in the text but I can’t say the same for the comments, so if you haven’t seen it, just go and watch it.  Then come back. There’s been a true revolution in television drama over the past decade or two.  It’s…
  • Half a King UK Cover

    Joe Abercrombie
    21 Mar 2014 | 8:16 am
    Ta-Dah!  Final hardcover will include all manner of wondrous textures, foils and finishes.  And now, of course, you are free to tell me just how much you love it… Should you desire to pre-order one, incidentally, you could do it via this page.  A considerable extract will be coming in the not too distant future…
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    Colleen Anderson

  • 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…
  • Lost in Translation: The Mire of Cellphone Help

    12 Feb 2014 | 3:25 pm
    My conversation was on two different tracks, just like this sign for a public urinal in China. Creative Commons by ToGa Wanderings Today, I tried to email Bell to find out about using my cell phone in the US. Next week, I’m going for five days to the Rainforest Writers Retreat. I’m picking up another writer in Bellingham and want to make sure I don’t get lost. I’m navigationally impaired so it’s a strong possibility. Now, my cell phone has texting and calls but only in Canada. I was at work and made the mistake of using Bell’s online chat. I forgot that…
  • Writing: The Storm of 2013

    29 Jan 2014 | 4:04 pm
    To write or not to write; there is no question. Creative Commons: I’m rather late to a sum up of 2014 (hahaha, I’m an idiot. This is why everyone needs an editor. I meant uh, 2013, because it really was that busy.) and it’s because it was one of the busiest years I’ve ever had. I barely had time to think or write on this blog. Hence, while I hoped to get out all of the Tesseracts 17 interviews within two months of its October release, it took me till January. And that’s how last year started; editing the 450…
  • How to Piss Off an Editor

    22 Jan 2014 | 12:29 pm
    Creative Commons: I’m cleaning out my email files and getting back on track, so in the near future you’ll see some posts here about other than writing. I’m no longer slush reading for Chizine Publications but this one email was memorable. We asked for sample chapters for the first read-through. I received a manuscript that was so full of slang and vernacular as to be incomprehensible. I didn’t think I could give a constructive comment so I opted for diplomacy. Remember, editors are extremely busy people and they rarely will give comments.
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    Eleanor Arnason's Web Log

  • Writing

    9 Apr 2014 | 12:56 pm
    A cross post from the Wyrdsmiths blog:I got together with Lyda Morehouse and Naomi Kritzer today and talked about Captain America, also about writing. I have been going through a bad patch, in which I envy other writers and feel bad about my writing career. Naomi pointed out that I have stories almost ready to go out and I am wasting time -- weeks and months -- tweeking them. They should go out the door. It's perfectly true that fiction does not sell till editors look at it, and most of my work sells sooner or later. I have no idea why I'm stalled right now. But the obvious thing to do -- as…
  • Cap 2

    9 Apr 2014 | 8:41 am
    Well, now I have seen Captain America 2. I think I have used up a month's supply of adrenaline. Thus far, my favorite Marvel movies are Thor 1 and Captain America 1. But this movie is a fine mix of violence, paranoia and cynicism. I will say no more, for fear of spoiling the story for the two or three people who haven't seen CA # 2 yet.Note: Cap is never cynical, nor is he treated with cynicism. But the world that poor guy has found himself in. You can understand why he longs for WWII.I did nothing after Captain America, except lie on the couch and read. I am going through Quiet a second…
  • Shark Post

    2 Apr 2014 | 7:28 am
    I've been in a vile mood, I think because I'm revising stories. One story in particular has been really hard to finish, and I'm getting more and more frustrated. But I want this thing done and out the door and out of my life.Why can't I be like a shark and resolve problems by biting them in half?
  • Notes on the Concert Tonight

    28 Mar 2014 | 8:16 pm
    Osmo Vanska is leading the Minnesota Orchestra in two Sibelius symphonies tonight. Per the announcer, Orchestra Hall is full and the musicians -- who now gather backstage and come out as a group -- got a standing ovation. When Vanska came out there was another ovation and the waving of many, many blue and white Finnish flags. Vanska is currently negotiating with the orchestra board on whether or not he comes back. He says he would like to come back, if the orchestra can play as well as he wants them to. I figure this is code for, if the board will promise to keep its stinking hands off the…
  • Great Sentences

    28 Mar 2014 | 7:45 am
    This is a link to an article in The Guardian that made me crazy. "What are the great sentences in genre fiction?" I guess I had missed the concept of great sentences. They are the ones that really stand out, like the opening sentence of Pride and Prejudice or the ending of The Great Gatsby. I said on facebook: Most of the sentences listed in the article and its comments draw attention to themselves. They are finely wrought, often elaborate, often clever. Which is okay, but a lot of very good writing does not have flashing neon arrows that tell us, "Art! Art! Art." Sentences belong in the…
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  • A Walk to Handras

    Neal Asher
    13 Apr 2014 | 8:33 am
    Here are some pictures along the way of the first walk I took.  The route leads from behind my house and up into the mountains.  The local Greeks don’t have much respect for signs – even on the main routes up here they have holes blown through them.  Up the top here I come to the wind turbines. I was told they had been turned off because those maintaining them hadn’t been paid for three months. However I have seen them running since. On the way up I had to stop to rest three times as the track is getting on for as steep as a staircase. Over the other side of the…
  • Gardening on Crete

    Neal Asher
    6 Apr 2014 | 8:39 am
    Here are some obligatory shots of the garden here. The weeds were at shoulder height and after 3 days I pulled them all and dug over the soil. This shot is of the front garden restored to order and salad seeds planted: Here’s a garden that runs up beside the path to the ruin behind my house. At this point I was halfway along it. The Ruin, incidentally, is a name that has stuck from the days when that was precisely what it was. It even has a sign saying so on the wall despite it now being a self-contained apartment. And here’s a shot from the front of the house showing one of the…
  • Sullivanized House

    Neal Asher
    5 Apr 2014 | 8:34 am
    I’m out in Crete now having spent the first three days here weeding and digging over the garden, cleaning the house and sorting out and passing on, either to neighbours or an animal charity, Caroline’s remaining belongings here. It has been hard, again, but I expected that. On day four I took my first walk – a six mile circuit up into the mountains behind my house then back by road. Today’s walk was a mere five miles, but if you consider about one mile of that was roughly on the level while the rest was two miles down a staircase then two miles back up it... But more on that later.
  • Bit of a Stroll

    Neal Asher
    30 Mar 2014 | 11:27 am
    Since Caroline’s death I’ve stopped drinking alcohol because my head just hasn’t been in the right place for that, stopped smoking after a brief venture back into it while she was dying, and I started walking. The reason for this last is twofold. In the past I have been prone to depression and know that exercise is the best cure and, if ever there was a time for depression to get hold of me, it’s now. Also, for many years I’ve wanted to lose some weight, so I’m walking and dieting. I guess the psychology of it is that I’m controlling something I cancontrol and fighting a battle…
  • Skyhorse Covers

    Neal Asher
    18 Mar 2014 | 8:51 am
    Here are the full covers of the US versions of Polity Agent and Jupiter War that Skyhorse should have sent to the printer by now:Enjoy!
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    Dar Kush

  • "Secret Formula" 4-13-14: Gratitude

    Steven Barnes
    13 Apr 2014 | 8:54 am
    “SECRET FORMULA” 4-13-14All right, the last basic piece of the puzzle (we’ll discuss minor or supplemental pieces soon).GOAL X FAITH X CONSTANT ACTION X GRATITUDE = RESULTSGratitude is the one that kicked my butt in Atlanta.  How am I supposed to be happy about something causing me so much pain?  I could see the trap: while it is possible to power yourself with negative emotions (fear, anger, hate) that is a different path.  “The Dark Side of the Force.”  I don’t deny that it works, but that was not, at all, what was being discussed in Wattle’s book.Not…
  • The "Secret Formula" 4-12-14

    Steven Barnes
    12 Apr 2014 | 9:05 am
    GOALS X FAITH X CONSTANT ACTION X GRATITUDE = RESULTS “In every job that’s to be done, there is an element of fun.  Find the fun and poof!  The job’s a game!”--M. Poppins.The third part of this deceptively simple formula is “constant action.”  In truth, this is the major flaw I see in people who practice “The Secret.”   The ones who fail, without exception thought that wanting something, visualizing it or chanting goals would produce a miracle.No.   YOU  are the miracle.    A farmer cannot pray over a field that has not…
  • Secret Formula 4/11/14

    Steven Barnes
    11 Apr 2014 | 7:13 am
    The Secret Formula 4/11Goals X Faith X Action X Gratitude = ResultsThe term “Faith” is used in two different senses1) the belief that your goal is POSSIBLE and APPROPRIATE, and that your efforts will bring you more pleasure and decrease pain.2) The belief that you have greater resources than those contained within your ego-self.Both are critical, for different reasons.  I don’t believe in lazy people (in the sense of “he’s too lazy to get a job/exercise/etc).  I believe in people without motivating goals (there’s nothing I’d get out of doing that), conflicting values…
  • Free Workshop today!

    Steven Barnes
    9 Apr 2014 | 8:04 am
    SIGN UP for the free virtual workshop "Storytelling through a Speculative Lens" I'm hosting through Spelman College with co-panelists Steven Barnes Sheree Renée Thomas Adrienne Maree Brown and John Jennings. LIVE-STREAMING ON YOUTUBE AND SPELMAN'S WEBSITE. 7p ET / 4p PT Wednesday. You can also send questions from Twitter with the hashtag OctaviaButlerSpelman‬. Here's the RSVP link: (And don't forget about the Octavia E. Butler Celebration of…
  • Back to the "Secret Formula"

    Steven Barnes
    7 Apr 2014 | 8:32 am
    Goal X Faith X Constant Action X Gratitude = SuccessThe above is the “Secret Formula” I extracted from “The Science of Getting Rich” by Wallace D. Wattles.  It is so powerful, and so far-reaching in implication, that I wanted to come back to it yet again.  I honestly believe that, IF YOU BALANCE YOUR GOALS (body, mind, emotions)   it is the simplest expression of a whole-life success philosophy I’ve ever seen, and comes perilously close to “magic.”  (especially in the Arthur C. Clarke “any sufficiently advance technology is indistinguishable from…
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    Max Barry

  • 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…
  • The Future, with Librarians and Lipstick

    9 Jul 2013 | 5:15 am
    You know what I discovered on book tour: AMERICA HAS GONE TO THE FUTURE. I was there two years ago but in the meantime America advanced about a decade. Now you use your phone to carry boarding passes and movie tickets. When you need a ride somewhere, you summon cars with an app. I tried to buy a sandwich in New York and the store didn’t take cash. DIDN’T TAKE CASH. I met two people who don’t carry wallets any more, just credit cards. In two more years, I guess, they will just carry phones. Now I’m home in Melbourne, Australia, I’m all, “Ugghhh, stores that…
  • Watching "Syrup"

    18 Jun 2013 | 4:47 am
    My fifth novel, Lexicon, is out today in the US & Canada, so I’m going to spend some of today visiting New York bookstores, looking at it, and feeling weird. The early press on this book has been kind of shockingly good, like what you dream about as an author but never actually happens, so I’m daring to think that THIS COULD BE IT, the book that allows me to use the word “bestselling” without abusing its definition. Poor word. It has been so stretched. Bookstore Events: New York, Los Angeles. But a few days ago I finally watched Syrup and I need to tell you what that…
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    The Battersblog


    Lee Battersby
    9 Apr 2014 | 4:19 pm
    "Go to the light," they say. "Gooooo to the liiiiight...."And yet, in real life, the light at the end of the tunnel is an approaching train, the light in your ceiling is a death trap for moths, and the only light that exists in nature is, well, as red as tooth or claw.Go to the light, my friends. The teeth are waiting.

    Lee Battersby
    7 Apr 2014 | 4:45 am
    Day job. Writing career. Hobbies. Social media. Family. Wife. Exercise. House maintenance. The trick is to keep them all separate. Now, here's the thing: the stresses of my day job, they've been bleeding over into my home life. That's put pressure on my relationship with Luscious, which has bled back into my work life. I've been bringing that home with me, which has affected my relationship with my children. Because I've been so stressed, I've been eating badly, which has affected my ability to exercise, which has affected my weight loss. I'm lethargic, tired and constantly in pain…

    Lee Battersby
    7 Apr 2014 | 3:58 am
    The 2013 Aurealis Awards were announced this weekend. Marching Dead was shortlisted in the Best Horror Novel, but lost out to Fairytales for Wylde Girls by Allyse Near.A full list of winners has been posted at the Aurealis Awards website. Congratulations to the winners in all categories: with several hundred novels, stories, anthologies, collections and graphic works published each year it's a big mountain to climb.
  • Review: Thor: God of Thunder #1

    Lee Battersby
    6 Apr 2014 | 12:29 am
    Thor: God of Thunder #1 by Jason AaronMy rating: 5 of 5 starsAbsolutely stunning reimagining of the Thor character, with an epic storyline befitting a major player in the Marvel Universe and a powerful God to boot. There are very real consequences here, and a multi-layered narrative that can't be solved by a simple swing of the hammer or calling down of the lighning. Complex, meaningful and deep: not what I generally expect from a Thor comic, and I'm absolutely hooked. View all my reviews
  • Review: The Australian Book Of True Crime

    Lee Battersby
    3 Apr 2014 | 4:25 pm
    The Australian Book Of True Crime by Larry WriterMy rating: 3 of 5 starsShort, informative essays on some of Australia's most famous and/or interesting crimes. While there are a few notable exceptions-- Ivan Milat immediately springs to mind-- they are more than compensated for by a number of cases from the late 19th and early 20th Century of which I was unfamiliar. Writer's style is simple and, for the most part, unobtrusive, although he lapses into the occasional conservative judgement that jars with the text: there is a constant association between his subject's physiognomy and his/her…
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    throw another bear in the canoe

  • now i'm calling all citizens from all over the world, this is captain america calling

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    16 Apr 2014 | 7:52 am
    It's snowing.I guess this is going to be a thing now.Heya, Jadis.In other news, why hasn't the Internet made me a Captain America: The Winter Soldier fan vid to this yet?THE OPPORTUNITIES!
  • you must take the a train to go to sugar hill

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    15 Apr 2014 | 5:56 pm
    I just invented a cocktail name, and it was so good I had to invent a cocktail to go with it. It's a Manhattan variant--specifically, a variant of the Manhattanhenge, also known as a Black Manhattan, in which Amaro is substituted for vermouth. This uses bourbon in place of the traditional rye, because that boy I like prefers bourbon.I like bourbon too, as it happens.It's my reward for a stupidly productive two days.I call this, "Persephone Takes the A Train," and it's in honor of the Storium kickstarter and my Jazz Age/Harlem Renaissance jazzpunk stretch goal. 2 parts bourbon…
  • we don't need luck. we've got guns.

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    15 Apr 2014 | 8:10 am
    The awesome news just keeps on coming.1) I just sold my Moscow metro dog story, "This Chance Planet," to Ellen Datlow at No word yet on when you can read it, but soon, my lovelies. Soooon.2) Zombies, Run! Season three kicks off tomorrow, April 16th. I wrote a story for it! So did Janni Lee Simner! So did some other folks you might know. Ahem.3) Here I am at Mary Robinette Kowal's blog talking about My Favorite Bit of Steles of the Sky. 4) I'm a stretch goal for the Storium kickstarter. This is an awesome online interactive storytelling/roleplaying engine with a variety of…
  • if i fuck it up, that's cool. that's art.

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    12 Apr 2014 | 10:06 am
    This is shameless shilling post where I urge you, Citizen In Good Standing Of The Internets, to go vote for the Locus Award and the Gemmell Award.Possibly even for my work. Or for somebody else's work that you think is awesome.The Gemmell Award closes at midnight GMT, 13 April 2014, and you can vote here.The Locus Award closes on tax day (USA) and you can vote here. I'm a write-in candidate on this one.The future is in your hands.Go vote.
  • you think i want to be understood

    it's a great life, if you don't weaken
    12 Apr 2014 | 8:33 am
    Hey look, here I am being interviewed by Geek's Guide to the Galaxy--about worldbuilding, the Eternal Sky, and, er, being wrong.Now to get some words, and do another interview.
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  • Babyon 5: Soul Hunter

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    16 Apr 2014 | 2:27 pm
    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: The aliens on board Babylon 5 go into a frenzy when an alien known as a Soul Hunter arrives on the station. Soul Hunters have a religious belief that the souls of important figures should be captured and preserved at the time of death. Dr. Stephen Franklin…
  • Friday Night Videos

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    4 Apr 2014 | 2:08 pm
    Back in the day, I really liked Del Amitri (not to be confused with Don Ameche). "Always the Last to Know" in particular has remained a favorite of mine. It's not a typical love song, and it's got a good guitar hook. It's one of those uptempo songs that are really about distress. I go for songs that develop a narrative, and this one does, but it's a subtle one that doesn't become obvious until that final gut-check right at the end. Those few lines fill in a whole lot of blanks and change the context of the entire song. Nice. There doesn't seem to be an actual video for it out there, but…
  • Sherwood Forest Faire

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    2 Apr 2014 | 11:40 am
    A day late and a dollar short as always. I'd intended this post to go up earlier, but life, you know? Took the family to the final day of Sherwood Forest Faire on Sunday, and had a good--if rushed--time. When we lived in Temple, we'd make annual trips to Scarborough Faire (which opens this weekend) but the four-hour drive from New Braunfels is simply too long a haul to do with any regularity (we've only been back once in the past decade). Having a viable ren fest less than two hours away (and 15 minutes from my mother-in-law's) is very nice. Plus, we're kinda sorta familiar with Sherwood's…
  • New Delaney? AND Straczynski!?

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    1 Apr 2014 | 8:31 am
    I don't review nearly as many books these days as I did, say, 10 years ago, but every so often publishers send me advance review copies of this novel or the other. Most of the time they simply fail to grab my attention. Most of the time. Look what arrived in my mailbox today: HOLY MOLEY! How did I not know this was happening? From the cover sheet: The eagerly-awaited, far-future sequel to the groundbreaking series teams Nebula and Hugo Award-winning author Samuel R. Delaney with visionary talent J. Michael Straczynski for an unprecedented, mind-bending adventure. Set 700 years after the…
  • Friday Night Videos

    Jayme Lynn Blaschke
    28 Mar 2014 | 1:32 pm
    Rick Ocasek's solo career didn't exactly set the world on fire when the Cars broke up, but you can't fault the man for trying. This late 80s single, "Rockaway", is a high-energy rocker that is vaguely reminiscent of the Cars' more uptempo, less-synthy work, but I'm moderately surprised it wasn't a hit for him. But that's beside the point. I'm gobsmackingly surprised by the gonzo bugnuts video, which looks for all the world like some unholy synthesis of the Go-Gos and the Brothers Quay. The 80s produced some bizarre music videos, but few approach this level of nutso. Previously on Friday Night…
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    Gwenda Bond

  • Cover Reveal - GIRL ON A WIRE!

    Gwenda Bond
    18 Apr 2014 | 6:01 am
    I'm so so SO excited to be able to show you guys the cover for GIRL ON A WIRE (aka the circus book). Please feel free to grab, share, and spread at will. I love it beyond (I am officially a ghost, because I died of happiness when I saw it). And I hope you love it too. A giant shoutout and my thanks to the designer Neil Swaab (go look at his other amazing work) and to the fabulous team at Skyscape, especially editorial director extraordinaire Courtney Miller. Without further ado... About the book: A ballerina, twirling on a wire high above the crowd. Horses, prancing like salsa dancers.
  • Gone Revising

    Gwenda Bond
    13 Apr 2014 | 9:47 am
    This is just a quick note to say that posts here will be scarce for the next month. With edit letter in hand and mind, I'll be busy revising Secret Project, employing some of my favorite techniques...  ...and occasionally muttering "We all go a little mad sometimes." The best. I'll drop by here if there's news, and I'm sure I'll still be on twitter and occasionally on the tumblr machine. And back with more regular stuff after deadline.
  • Extra, Extra: Some John Green Interview Outtakes

    Gwenda Bond
    4 Apr 2014 | 10:08 am
    As long-time readers of this blog know, I've been a fan of John Green's work since Looking for Alaska, which was one of the first novels I read that featured hyper-smart, sarcastic southern teenagers like the ones I grew up around. (And they even drank the same syrupy sweet Boone's Farm we sometimes snuck -- don't tell my parents. Kidding! I think they caught us and there was an epic grounding.) Anyway, John and I have known each other online for years, share a whole bunch of friends in common, but had never actually gotten a chance to chat. So of course I said yes when I…
  • Wednesday Hangovers

    Gwenda Bond
    2 Apr 2014 | 8:19 am
    Sorry to poof out of existence again. There were page proofs for the circus book to do (lovelove the little design elements!) and then a flurry of other work and tax stuff and various deadlines large and small. And I seem to be working on a new book that came out of nowhere, but is accumulating actual words and an outline in the form of emails to I guess I'll start a file for it and hope that doesn't spook it out of existence. But I've collected quite a few links, so in the interest of closing ye olde tabs... The best news of today, obviously, is that Karen Joy…
  • Rebel With A Pink Bike + Links

    Gwenda Bond
    20 Mar 2014 | 7:27 am
    How is it already Thursday? How is it already mid-March? Been trying to get back into my 6 a.m. drafting/revising groove, and have done so successfully... But I had forgotten how sleepy I get during the day at first. So I'm probably yawning right now as you're reading this, no matter when it is. And if I'm not, it's because I resorted to extra coffee. I also have an exciting afternoon on the way which involves getting a filling replaced at the dentist (ready to hum my favorite dentist song as always--thoughts of Steve Martin are the only pleasant thing about going). The…
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    Swan Tower

  • A Year in Pictures – Lamps at Kiyomizudera

    Swan Tower
    17 Apr 2014 | 8:06 am
    This work by is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Most of our time at Kiyomizudera was spent wandering around outside, but there were portions of the visit where we passed through some of the buildings. I quite liked the lamps along this gallery — even if I have no idea where in the temple we were when I took the photo. Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there. This entry was also posted at Comment here or there.
  • So, Okinawa

    Swan Tower
    16 Apr 2014 | 10:36 am
    I made reference to this in my previous post; I’d forgotten that I hadn’t actually said anything about it before now. I’m going to Okinawa in July. Every few years, on an irregular schedule, Shihan and various other people put together an intensive karate and kobudo seminar, bringing in people from a variety of countries (Germany, Spain, Denmark, the U.S.) for about a week in Naha and on Kori Island. It will be my first time going; the last one was five years ago, and I was much too low-ranking to attend. Sometimes there’s a tournament, but apparently Shihan got tired…
  • A Year in Pictures – Angel at the Door

    Swan Tower
    16 Apr 2014 | 8:06 am
    This work by is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. The Église Saint-Jean-de-Montmartre in Paris is decorated in a very unusual style — elements of Art Nouveau, and (as you can see) a mosaic surface that almost looks like beads. While I’m a big fan of Gothic architecture and other standard church designs, it’s also nice to encounter one that breaks the mold in attractive ways. Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there. This entry was also posted at…
  • I believe the abbreviation I’m looking for is FML

    Swan Tower
    15 Apr 2014 | 6:23 pm
    Same song, second verse. A little bit louder, a little bit more JESUS H CHRIST THIS ISN’T FUNNY ANY MORE. Which is to say, I will be having ankle surgery. Again. Same ligament as before . . . . . . just on the other foot. Listen up, kids: sprain your ankles too often as a youth, and this will be your reward before you’re anywhere near your dotage. An orthopedist wiggling your foot around and saying “Wow!,” followed immediately by “Sorry, that’s not what you want to hear your doctor say, is it?” An unstable ankle joint that’s causing…
  • A Year in Pictures – Ashmolean Coins

    Swan Tower
    15 Apr 2014 | 7:06 am
    This work by is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Happy Tax Day to my U.S. readers. Photographing museum exhibits is hard. The light is often low, or else glares off the glass; the glass itself is generally smudged, scratched, or both. I’ve started getting better at it, though, and this shot is possibly my finest museum photograph ever. I’ve mentioned before that I clean up my photos in Lightroom, right? Well, this one is almost completely untouched. I cropped a bit of the left edge and…
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  • How to regain trust in the NSA era: The IGUS Gambit

    David Brin
    16 Apr 2014 | 10:11 am
    How might the Obama Administration best respond to wave after wave of "NSA revelations" that roil and cloud the political waters?Ironically, almost none of Edward Snowden's leaks -- or those of Julian Assange -- revealed anything that was illegal per se. What they have done is stir a too-long delayed argument over what should be legal!  Specifically, the Patriot Act and the ratchet effect on surveillance that always happens when a country enters a state of panic. The post-9/11 alarm is finally fading and -- (barring some new, panic-inducing event) -- elements of…
  • Money flows that might prevent new World Wars

    David Brin
    13 Apr 2014 | 10:10 am
    Veteran U.S. diplomat and Middle East expert Dennis Ross made some interesting points about President Obama's trip to Saudi Arabia in an L.A. Times editorial: "Next Test for Obama: Soothing the Saudis." He referred to the Saudis biggest concern, the rise of militant Shiite Islam and an axis of Iran-Iraq-Syria that now includes an aggressively revanchist Russia. A problem that some have referred to as "World War Four".Alas, Mr Ross ignores the elephant in the room. That the Saudis are not the victims in any of this. Their relentless push to establish fiercely conservative Wahhabi madrassas all…
  • It’s not the “One Percent”

    David Brin
    9 Apr 2014 | 12:26 pm
    First, before getting into the “one percent” matter…I have heard few interviews on NPR that were more cogent, intelligent or rich in wisdom and knowledge than this one, with Bruce Levine, a professor of history at the University of Illinois, who is author of The Fall of the House of Dixie: The Civil War and the Social Revolution that Transformed the South and Confederate Emancipation, Professor Levine deals handily with the edifice of completely made-up rationalizations we hear fermenting these days: e.g. that slavery was declining in the South during…
  • Science! From TWODA to "P.U." to RNA

    David Brin
    7 Apr 2014 | 1:59 pm
    This will be a science potpourri.  But first… an announcement for you Mid-Atlantic residents! I will be among the headliners -- along with Patrick Stewart, Brian Greene, George Takei, Kim Stanley Robinson, Stewart Brand, Michio Kaku and some MythBusters -- at the Smithsonian's epic-scale "The Future is Here!" event, in Washington D.C. May 16-17.  Look it up and come if you can!  Brought to you by Smithsonian Magazine (subscribe) and the Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination (join!)== Save the world from dopes? ==Scientists have…
  • Probing the future: very good news… and some very bad...

    David Brin
    5 Apr 2014 | 1:34 pm
    We'll get to weighing some very good news… and some bad… in a second. But first --So You Think You're Smarter than a CIA Agent? asks an article on NPR News, citing The Good Judgment Project -- a four-year research study organized as part of a government-sponsored forecasting tournament. Thousands of people around the world predict global events. Their collective forecasts are surprisingly accurate. For the past three years, 3,000 average people have been quietly making probability estimates about everything from Venezuelan gas subsidies to North Korean politics as…
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    Dispatches from Tanganyika

  • 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.
  • This Week's Sale

    Billy Martin
    7 Apr 2014 | 2:20 pm
    PZBART sale this week: 25% off signed books. Lots of titles available, and many rarities. at Dreamwidth. Comment here or there, as you will.
  • Jewelry Repairs

    Billy Martin
    3 Apr 2014 | 6:18 pm
    Since I'm fixing a piece right now, I thought I'd post a reminder that all my handmade 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. at Dreamwidth. Comment here or there, as you will.
  • Night Owls & Early Birds

    Billy Martin
    31 Mar 2014 | 1:27 am
    We've had a lot of scary and unexpected medical expenses recently, so I am having Night Owl/Early Bird Sale: 3 AM today (3-31-14) through the stroke of midnight, 50% off all Nola Jewels (my handmade jewelry) and paintings on canvas. The jewelry ships free worldwide with purchase of any other item in shop. at Dreamwidth. Comment here or there, as you will.
  • Testosterone Book Sale

    Billy Martin
    18 Mar 2014 | 2:44 pm
    Hear ye, hear ye! Now announcing the OOPS MY TESTOSTERONE-LEVEL BLOOD TEST COST $226 BOOK SALE! I'm offering first-edition, out-of-print hardcovers of GUILTY BUT INSANE, THE VALUE OF X, and THE DEVIL YOU KNOW for $15 each with free U.S. shipping. As always, books are signed and can be personalized. at Dreamwidth. Comment here or there, as you will.
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    Tobias Buckell Online

  • Xenowealth universe is now a Storium stretch goal

    Tobias Buckell
    16 Apr 2014 | 11:33 am
    What is Storium? From the Kickstarter: “Storium is a web-based online game that you play with friends. It works by turning writing into a multiplayer game. With just your computer, tablet, or smartphone, you can choose from a library of imaginary worlds to play in, or build your own. You create your story’s characters and decide what happens to them. You can tell any kind of story with Storium. The only limit is your imagination. Storium uses familiar game concepts inspired by card games, role-playing games, video games, and more. In each Storium game, one player is the narrator, and…
  • First review of Hurricane Fever

    Tobias Buckell
    16 Apr 2014 | 11:15 am
    Marissa Lingen must have read Hurricane Fever really quickly, as I only just got the advanced reader copies that are sent out to reviewers on my doorstep. Marissa has this to say: [He]… has married the thriller style to actual knowledge of the Caribbean as something other than a vacation destination and fun extrapolative bits of SF–shark-based bio-paint, awesome!–so that it is a superior grade of thriller. If you’re an SF reader who dips into thrillers from time to time, or if you have a dedicated thriller reader in the circle of people for whom you buy presents, Hurricane Fever…
  • Tor’s new covers for the Xenowealth are now up online at Amazon, available for preorder all around

    Tobias Buckell
    15 Apr 2014 | 6:16 pm
    Looks like the new covers for the Xenowealth books are popping up online for eBook purchases, at least at Amazon: As a reminder, the series is being relaunched this December as trade paperbacks. It’s a very exciting thing to see happening. The trade paperback can be preordered via your favorite local indy store or via Amazon or B&N. The summary and cover are not yet updated, they’re just pulling from the original mass market, but the December 9th launch date is for real. The ISBN is 9780765338402 for those who need to know.
  • Tech and five year olds

    Tobias Buckell
    11 Apr 2014 | 12:14 pm
    Someone asked what the biggest surprise about living with five year olds is. For me it’s been their uptake of devices. Technology is something that was invented when you were past adolescence, I saw that written somewhere. My kids, because I design eBooks, have had iPads lying around (or use our iPhones) since they were babies. It isn’t technology to them. It’s natural, and I expected to see them use and fumble around with user interfaces with the apps we’ve curated for them. What blew me away was when we let them play with Siri on the iPhone. For a while, they would…
  • My kids turn 5 today

    Tobias Buckell
    11 Apr 2014 | 11:49 am
    Five years ago. Doesn’t seem all that long. But I’ve ended up with two five year old kids running around the house. How did that happen? Their current hobbies include re-enacting memorized lines from Frozen, bedazzling open surfaces of the house with stickers (where do all these stickers come from? I don’t remember buying them, they just seem to… happen), and heckling me in my office when they get home (“did you finish the book today, daddy?” “No, I’m a quarter of the way through.” “Well, you should finish it soon.” “I…
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    Dark Roast

  • Never bet against the crow.

    Emma Bull
    26 Mar 2014 | 7:30 pm
    Corvids. Still smart and good-looking. (And they'll be the first to tell you so.)
  • Last chance at the last auctions!

    Emma Bull
    29 Jan 2014 | 7:55 pm
    Okay, guys, hurry over to Ellen Kushner's LJ for a chance to bid on beautiful things from Endicott West! Original sketches by Terri Windling! Terri's Pre-Raphaelite motorcycle jacket! Rare fabric pieces for quilting or other crafts! Signed books by E-West visitors (including some of mine...)!Do it before midnight, because, like Cinderella's coach, the magic goes ka-blooey at the witching hour. Go! Go! What are you waiting for?
  • Own a piece (or many!) of fantasy literature history!

    Emma Bull
    24 Jan 2014 | 7:11 pm
    This is so cool it almost--almost!--defies description. Endicott West, my former desert oasis home, has been sold, and Terri Windling, Ellen Kushner, and Delia Sherman are sorting, packing, and dispersing.Which includes the breathtaking library, full of works that have influenced E-Westians since its inception.That's only part of it; as you can imagine, Endicott West contains a magnificent collection of books, scattered throughout the property's buildings. If you ever had the pleasure to stay there, you know there was no room that didn't offer you some wonderful bookish discovery.But those…
  • Calling Twin Cities Multi-Brain Database!

    Emma Bull
    16 Jan 2014 | 11:57 am
    Folks in Minneapolis and St. Paul, I could use your help for a friend! She's an older woman with mobility issues who's looking for an apartment in the Twin Cities. She can afford five hundred to six hundred dollars a month rent, and needs a safe neighborhood with proximity to mass transit options and amenities like grocery stores, drug stores, health providers, and the like. She has a car, but it's not very dependable, so the suburbs aren't a good choice for her. Because of her mobility problems, she needs a place all on one level, ideally with laundry on the same floor.A first-floor unit in…
  • Uh, LiveJournal...

    Emma Bull
    23 Dec 2013 | 1:15 pm
    Is anyone else having trouble with their group filters, or is it just me? My check-daily filter is unchanged, but when I view that filter, I get ALL my friends list.
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    Stephanie Burgis

  • Moaning, Returning, Reading

    Stephanie Burgis
    14 Apr 2014 | 4:02 am
    Oof. Well, MrD's 2-1/2-week-long school holidays have started with nearly the whole family getting a Death Cold, in combination with various other complications. Sigh. Patrick has a major freelance deadline at the end of the holidays, so I'm trying very hard to make sure he gets enough writing time every day; as for me, though, I've mostly just been flopping onto the bed in my time off, these past few days...oh, and blowing my nose and moaning. Very decorative, as you can imagine! ;)On the upside, I'm having strong urges to start reading historical nonfiction again, for the first time in…
  • Writing, Watching, Inspiration

    Stephanie Burgis
    9 Apr 2014 | 4:35 am
    Whew. After three long weeks, my chest infection is finally all gone - and on Monday (aided by my just-arrived inspirational Elsa figurine), I had my first real writing session in 3-1/2 weeks!I am sooooo much happier this week than I have been for the last few, I can't even begin to express it.Of course, I also feel REALLY far behind where I'd expected to be by now, since I'd been writing 5,000 words a week on my Kat novella ("Courting Magic") in the weeks before Baby X and I got sick. So, honestly, I'd been hoping to be nearly finished by now, whereas I'm actually only about a third of the…
  • Writing Figurines

    Stephanie Burgis
    6 Apr 2014 | 6:46 am
    Over on the Girls Heart Books blog, I'm blogging today about one of the silliest and yet most effective writing aids I know: inspirational figurines!You can read the full entry here (and I'd love to read any comments either there or here).
  • A beautiful surprise, some giveaway winners, and a wonderful link

    Stephanie Burgis
    2 Apr 2014 | 6:53 am
    It's been a tough week, since my chest infection turned zombie-like (or maybe vampiric?) and Would Not Die. So, not much got done apart from coughing...But look what came via Twitter and cheered me up immensely!Sally Jane Thompson, one of my favorite artists (and graphic novel writer/artists!) sent me this sketch of Kat! It makes me SO happy every single time I look at it. :)In other Kat news, congratulations to sapphireone, Jen Petro-Roy, and Colette, who all won Kat jewelry in my giveaway! If you guys could use my contact form to let me know your mailing addresses and jewelry preferences…
  • A paperback, a sparkly giveaway, and a story to listen to

    Stephanie Burgis
    25 Mar 2014 | 4:32 am
    Today Stolen Magic is finally out in paperback in the U.S. and Canada! If you've been waiting to read it until it was in a cheaper edition (and oh, would I understand that!), now is your chance. And if you've already read it, I would SO appreciate any online signal-boosting, shout-outs, or reviews left on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or elsewhere! (Indiebound doesn't do reviews, as far as I can tell, but I do highly recommend it as a place to buy the book!)(You can also read the first three chapters free online here.)Yay for Kat! And yay for Charles, who finally meets his own true love after all…
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    Mabfan's Musings

  • The Return of The Brookline Parent!

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    11 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    Nomi and I are delighted to announce that our The Brookline Parent column, which ran from 2010-2013 on the Brookline Patch website, is back! We've relaunched the column as its own blog, and we're looking forward to sharing our adventures with Muffin and Squeaker again on a regular basis.Today's column, The Return of, Well, Us, goes into a bit more detail about why we stopped and how we'll be starting up again.Enjoy!
  • I Remember the Future Film - First Review

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    8 Apr 2014 | 10:00 am
    So, although I wasn't able to attend the screening of I Remember the Future this past weekend at Worldfest Houston, amysisson did! She has posted a review along with reviews of the four other films that constituted the Sci-Fi Shorts.I am very glad to say that she liked the film:...I'm not sure which surprised me more: the "Australian" part or the "student" part, because I can definitely say that there was nothing "student" about this film...I Remember the Future is the reason I became aware of the festival in the first place, and the reason I went. This one film was worth making the trip…
  • I Remember the Future at Houston Worldfest This Sunday!

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    4 Apr 2014 | 7:41 am
    This Sunday marks the US premiere of the KAS Creations short film based on my story "I Remember the Future."As you can see from the Worldfest Houston schedule, the film will be shown twice, at 1 pm as part of the SCI-FI SHORTS MATINEE SHOW #7 and at 3 pm as part of the WORLD SHORTS MATINEE SHOW #10. From the schedule, you can click on the link to purchase tickets.If you happen to be in Houston, I hope you'll check it out.And as always, to learn more about the book, check out the Burstein Books website, and to read the story, check it out on the Apex Blog.#SFWApro
  • Two Reprint Announcements: Amazing and Fantastic

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    31 Mar 2014 | 11:01 am
    Today I received welcome news that two of my stories will be reprinted.First of all, I am delighted to note that my short story "Cosmic Corkscrew," a Hugo-nominated story first published in Analog, will be reprinted in the April 2014 issue of Amazing Stories, the special 88th anniversary edition of the magazine.Although I have appeared on the Amazing Stories blog, this will be my first piece of fiction to appear in the magazine. I am delighted that editor Steve Davidson chose my story as one of those to be reprinted in the magazine.The story has a nice connection to Amazing Stories, by the…
  • Yesterday's Fire in Boston - Some Thoughts

    mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)
    27 Mar 2014 | 10:33 am
    I work in the Back Bay area of Boston, and as I left work yesterday, I could smell the smoke from the fire at 298 Beacon Street, even though it was a ten-minute walk away. The air was filled with a haze, and the odor stung my eyes, causing them to well up with tears.Later on, my eyes welled up with tears again, as we heard that two firefighters, Michael R. Kennedy and Edward J. Walsh, Jr., had made the ultimate sacrifice as they tried to stop the fire and save other people's lives.My friend Andrew Marc Greene (530nm330hz) said the following on Facebook:I will never understand what gives a…
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    Pushing a Snake Up a Hill

  • The BookBub Promotion Went Great

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    16 Apr 2014 | 6:00 pm
    If you were reading here last week, you know I marked down my omnibus ebook of The Chaos Chronicles: Books 1-3 for a week, in conjunction with a promotion on The sale went amazingly, gratifyingly well. Better than I expected or dreamed. In fact, there are more than 2500 people out there with shiny new copies of my omnibus on their Kindles, Nooks, iPads, whatever. More than 1500 people grabbed it on the first day alone. We broke into the top 100 sellers of all books in the Kindle store, and briefly lingered at #65 among all Kindle ebooks. More importantly, I've already heard from…
  • An Electric Bill Even a Miser Would Like

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    16 Apr 2014 | 4:00 pm
    It finally happened. Our latest electric bill:     $-35, due on or before April 28 Yes! The electric company owes us money! This has been our best month so far, generating electricity from the solar panels on our roof. Here's how it looks so far in April:Typically I think we use ~22 kWh per day. There were some days this month we generated almost double that amount, and fed the extra to the grid, and only a few days where we fell short. Solar rocks.
  • Snow! On April 16!

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    16 Apr 2014 | 2:18 pm
    Yeesh, wasn't it just yesterday I was driving in the truck, a little overly warm what with the Spring weather we've been having? Well, I was up later last night than I should have been, worrying over some stuff that should be simple in this chapter. And when I finally stumbled downstairs at 4 take Captain Jack out for his last visit to the tree before bed, what do I find but snow on the ground, and still coming down! This had got to be the weirdest weather year I can remember.
  • Bookbub Promotion on The Chaos Chronicles: Books 1–3!

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    8 Apr 2014 | 6:00 am
    Starting today, and for one week, The Chaos Chronicles: Books 1–3 (an ebook omnibus edition) will be steeply discounted, down to $1.99! That's for three complete books—and would be a great price for just one book! Here's another exclamation mark, for good measure! This is my second promotion through Bookbub, and I'm hoping it does as well as the first.These three novels are enough to get you well into the Chaos story, starting with Neptune Crossing, and continuing with Strange Attractors and The Infinite Sea. I hate blowing my own horn, so can I let some others do it for me? Here are some…
  • Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror

    Jeffrey A. Carver
    7 Apr 2014 | 3:00 pm
    Are you hoping to write, but don't know quite how to get started? Meant to do NaNoWriMo, but the month was gone before you could decide what to write about? Need a little encouragement, or maybe a kick in the butt? Here's a book that might help. It's called Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror, and is edited by Laurie Lamson.The reason I know about it is that a copy landed in my mailbox a week or two ago. And the reason that happened is that I contributed a piece to the book and then more or less forgot about it. Well, I'm glad my contributor's copy came along to jog my memory,…
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    incipit vita nova

  • On Writing: My Writing Process Blog Tour

    14 Apr 2014 | 6:00 am
    Thanks to Mindy Klasky, my fellow Book View Cafe member and gifted writer, who invited me on this blog hop about what we're working on! Mindy's writing a hot series of nine romance books about the Diamond Brides ... they're...
  • The Anagnorisis and Peripetia Generation

    12 Apr 2014 | 5:14 pm
    Anagnorisis: or the journey from ignorance to knowledge. Peripetia: the moment, in Greek tragedy - an awful one - of realization of a life-changing truth. I don't think in today's world that peripetia need be tragic or horrible at all....
  • Vikings Women Kick A**!

    9 Apr 2014 | 9:33 am
    Vikings Season 2 is in some ways better than Season 1! In light of a somewhat disturbing panel on military battles in fantasy at ConDor, during which other panel members asserted that female military commanders or just plain warrior females...
  • I am Not a Sausage: I am a Free Woman!

    7 Apr 2014 | 12:58 pm
    Looking at the 25th Anniversary WoTF video... Somebody looks better than she did in 1998. Dump Dairy. Dump Wheat! Dump Additives and especially HFCS!
  • The Eternal Present Tense and Fake Passive Voice

    4 Apr 2014 | 6:34 am
    I recently got a response from a beta reader of Like Fire that informed me I was using "passive" language. Language like "He was" and "they were" and so-on. After a bit of discussion, this turned out to have originated...
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    The Mumpsimus

  • For a Socialism of the Skin

    Matthew Cheney
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:24 pm
    Richard Kim at The Nation points to one of the central problems of the big Gay Inc. organizations, especially HRC:In 2012, the Human Rights Campaign honored Goldman Sachs with an award at its annual dinner, while naming Lloyd Blankfein as its national corporate spokesman for same-sex marriage. In an obscene form of pink-washing in which every banker, sweatshop overlord and oil baron gets a gay star, HRC’s most recent report on “corporate equality” proudly concludes that a record 304 of the nation’s largest businesses—including Chevron, Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase,…
  • A Video Essay on Jim Jarmusch: "Dead Men & Ghosts, Limited"

    Matthew Cheney
    17 Apr 2014 | 12:26 pm
    As the silence around here indicates, I've been tremendously busy the past few weeks. One project I managed to complete was a new video essay, this one about Jim Jarmusch's films Dead Man, Ghost Dog, and The Limits of Control. It's now available at Press Play, along with a brief introduction.
  • Samuel R. Delany: Another Roundtable

    Matthew Cheney
    24 Mar 2014 | 7:36 am
    Recently, Locus published an online discussion of the work of Samuel R. Delany with a bunch of different writers and critics, primarily aimed at discussing Delany’s status as the newly-crowned Grand Master of the Science Fiction Writers of America. Plenty of interesting things are said there, and the participants include a number of people I’m very fond of (both as writers and people), but the particular focus ended up, I thought, creating a certain narrowness to the discussion, especially regarding the post-Dhalgren works, and I thought it might be nice to gather a different group of…
  • Lucius Shepard: Art Out of Fantasy and Pain

    Matthew Cheney
    20 Mar 2014 | 7:46 pm
    photo by Ellen Datlow, 21 Nov 2007I hate that this sentence must now be in the past tense: Lucius Shepard was one of the great American writers.It's hard to find words, even though I've had 24 hours to search.In a review of The Dragon Griaule, I invoked Conrad and melodrama, and quoted Eric Bentley on both. Here's part of that quote again, because it gets at exactly what Lucius Shepard's stories mean to me, and why they mean so much:Only under the influence of a narrow and philistine Naturalism can we ask why an artist shows life at a remove and in some established genre. The transposition of…
  • False Detectives, True Discourses, and Excessive Exegeses

    Matthew Cheney
    13 Mar 2014 | 9:39 am
    I got caught up in the hype, got curious, and found a way to watch True Detective. It's my kind of thing: a dark crime story/police procedural/serial killer whatzit. Also, apparently the writer of the show, Nic Pizzolatto, is aware of some writers I like, and even one I know, Laird Barron. (Hi Laird! You rock!) What struck me right from the beginning was the marvelous music, selected and produced by the great T-Bone Burnett, and the cinematography by Adam Arkapaw, who shot one of my favorite movies of recent decades, Snowtown, and also the very good film Animal Kingdom and the marvelous Jane…
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    John Crowley Little and Big

  • It's all better now

    John Crowley
    15 Apr 2014 | 4:22 am
    How many got this striking announcement in their email today:This Declaration made on 8th of April 2014 by Alpha Omega StationConcerns the official enactment of the rights and duties indicatedhereafter and aims to inform all parties involved of the beginningof the global restructuring process for the benefit of the World and Mankind.Alpha Omega Station are the historical, technical, formally andofficially confirmed Sovereign and Judicial organization which inaccordance with International Treaties exercises legal Ownership,authority and lawful power over various Assets,Gold Deposits, andthe…
  • Prepositional

    John Crowley
    7 Apr 2014 | 4:07 am
    I'm seeing more of this in the NY Times."The desire by Pierre Karl Péladeau, a media mogul running in provincial elections, for Quebec to secede from Canada appears to have destroyed his party’s hopes for victory."It's as though the Times editors want to change nouns -- maybe "desire" started out as "push" or something and when an editor changed it, the preposition was left unchanged and became stupid. Who says "the desire by" someone?
  • crowleycrow @ 2014-03-12T07:38:00

    John Crowley
    12 Mar 2014 | 4:38 am
    Some of the NYTimes's bad sentences are funny, some disheartening, and a few really verge on the dangerous. Rapid readers (and those who expect to see the sense they already are convinced of) might well be misled by this in today's online edititon:"Ms. Feinstein has proved to be a bulwark for intelligence agencies in recent years: publicly defending the National Security Agency’s telephone and Internet surveillance activities, the C.I.A.’s authority over drone strikes and the F.B.I.’s actions under the Patriot Act against a growing bipartisan chorus of critics."Are we not led to ask…
  • Nixies

    John Crowley
    2 Mar 2014 | 12:30 pm
    On a day in 1969, late at the office where I was one of the proofreaders of the new compiuterized NY phone book, a salesman cold-calling businesses in the building wandered in trying to sell a new kind of desk calculator. He wasn't going to make a sale there, but he showed it off for us anyway: it was a beauty, dark and mysterious. The row of numbers at the top were alight, somehow, little orange ghosts inside glass tubes; at the press of a button they'd change. If you looked closely you could see that surrounding the digit that was alight were silver threads of all the other nine…
  • Dutch Spaniards at work

    John Crowley
    26 Feb 2014 | 5:25 am
    From today's NY Times, about the ongoing IRS probes and the 501(c) organizations: "With work at the Exempt Organization Division at a standstill, Owens pointed out that 'the clear impact of the investigations has been to throw a proverbial wooden shoe into the machinery, causing it to grind to a halt.'"In whose proverbial universe is it a wooden shoe that stops the machinery? I have only ever heard that it was a monkey wrench (whatever exactly that is) or in Britspeak a spanner (see John Lennon, "A Spaniard in the Works"). Wooden shoe?
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    ellen datlow

  • Table of Contents for Nightmare Carnival, forthcoming this fall from Dark Horse.

    ellen datlow
    31 Mar 2014 | 9:27 am
    Here's the Table of Contents for Nightmare Carnival, forthcoming this fall from Dark Horse. The order below is not absolutely final but it's close Table of ContentsPreface Ellen DatlowIntroduction Katherine DunnScapegoats N. Lee WoodThe Firebrand Priya SharmaWork, Hook, Shoot, Rip Nick MamatasAnd the Carnival Leaves Town A.C. WiseCorpse Rose Terry DowlingLast of the Fair Joel LaneA Small Part in the Pantomime Glen HirshbergHibbler’s Minions Jeffrey FordSwan Song and Then Some Dennis DanversThe Lion Cage Genevieve ValentineThe Darkest Part Stephen Graham JonesThe Popping Fields…
  • Lovecraft's Monsters --coming out in time to distract you from tax day - April 15th

    ellen datlow
    25 Mar 2014 | 10:45 am
    It's already out and about-at least for those who pre-ordered it on Amazon. with fabulous interior illustrations of each critter by John CoulthartTable of ContentsForeword by Stefan Dziemianowiczintroduction by Ellen DatlowOnly the End of the World Again by Neil Gaiman                                             Bulldozer by Laird Barron…
  • Call for Submissions: Best Horror of the Year volume 6 (2013 material only)

    ellen datlow
    22 Aug 2013 | 4:47 pm
    Call for SubmissionsI am editing the anthology series Best Horror of the Year (Night Shade Books) and am currently reading for the sixth volume, which will include all material published in 2013. Reprints only. I am looking for stories and poetry from all branches of horror: from the traditional-supernatural to the borderline, including high-tech sf horror, supernatural stories, psychological horror, dark thrillers, or anything else that might qualify. If in doubt, send it. This is a reprint anthology so I am only reading material published in or about to be published in 2013. Submission…
  • The Long HM list for The Best Horror of the Year volume 5 (part two)

    ellen datlow
    20 Aug 2013 | 2:00 pm
    Jones, Stephen Graham “After the People Lights Have Gone Off,” Phantasmagorium Jones, Stephen Graham “Heads-All-Smashed-In, “ Prairie Schooner winter. Jones, Stephen Graham “Notes From the Apocalypse,” Weird Tales #359.Jones, Stephen Graham “Uncle,” Ghosts: Recent Hauntings.Jones, Stephen Graham “Welcome to the Reptile House,” Strange Aeons 9.Kadrey, Richard “Devil in the Dollhouse,” amazon.comKaita, Murayama trans. Jeffrey Angles “The Diabolical Tongue,” Kaiki volume 3.Kalin, Deborah “First They…
  • The Long HM list for The Best Horror of the Year volume 5 (part one)

    ellen datlow
    20 Aug 2013 | 1:55 pm
    I'll leave this open to comments for now, but LJ has been spammy this past year, which is why I've essentially stopped using it. So if that happens, I will close down the comments. (I'll link from FB and Twitter to here so you could comment on FB or Twitter if this gets closed down).Alexander, Maria “Revivified,” Night Terrors II.Allan, Nina “Sunshine,” Black Static  29.Allan, Nina “The Barricade,” Dark Currents.Allan, Nina “The Elephant Girl,” Shadows & Tall Trees spring, #3.Allen, Brady “Praying,” Back Roads…
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  • Twist vs. McFarlane, Part 2

    Peter David
    18 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published August 11, 2000, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1395 When last we left our hero, Todd McFarlane, he was fretting outside a St. Louis courtroom after a St. Louis jury had awarded $24.5 million to former hockey player Tony Twist after McFarlane appropriated Twist’s name for a thuggish mobster in the pages of Spawn. “I thought that ‘law’ was sort of short for ‘logic,’” said Todd. “That just got blown out of the water.” Understandably so. “Law,” according to my dictionary, derives from an Old Norse word, “log,” that means, “Something set down.” You…
  • Twist vs. McFarlane, Part 1

    Peter David
    14 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published August 4, 2000, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1394 “Must… control… fist of death…” –“Dilbert” Several years back I got an angry phone call from John Byrne, and for a refreshing change of pace, he wasn’t angry at me. “Did you read Spawn #30?” he asked. In Spawn #30, there were two members of the Ku Klux Klan, and their names were Peter and Johnny. Byrne was convinced that Todd McFarlane, Spawn creator, writer and erstwhile penciler, had dubbed the characters thusly for the purpose of taking a direct swipe at us. After all, Byrne and I had not marched…
  • Book review: Man of Two Worlds by Julie Schwartz

    Peter David
    11 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published July 28, 2000, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1393 I’ve written before about the fundamental lack of knowledge of, and interest in, the history of our little hobby. At the time that I was a young fan first discovering comics, and eagerly seeking out everything I could get my hands on, there were a number of tomes to be had. There were such works as The Great Comic Book Heroes by Jules Feiffer or Jim Steranko’s History of Comics and the essay collection All in Color for a Dime edited by Dick Lupoff and Don Thompson. But there is more than just the written history that…
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier

    Peter David
    7 Apr 2014 | 8:08 am
    We saw it last Friday and I agree with what a lot of people are saying: this might well be the best Marvel movie yet. For starters–and there’s no other way to put it–it didn’t feel like a comic book movie. Instead it felt more like a spy thriller that happened to feature Captain America as its lead in the same way that James Bond is the lead of Bond spy thrillers. Chris Evans has, over three films, morphed into the foremost of the movie heroes. The fight sequences have become even more dynamic (although occasionally edited with the salad shooter technique that made…
  • Reviews of Stuff

    Peter David
    7 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Originally published July 21, 2000, in Comics Buyer’s Guide #1392 “Reviews,” I am told. This is to be the “All Review” issue, which is to given out at the San Diego Con. Okay. I’ll review everything that I’ve read or seen in the past few days, excluding television. Chicken Run. I first got turned on to the work of Nick Park by Joe Straczynski, who was singing the praises of Wallace and Gromit—a gently daffy inventor and his mute-but-much-smarter dog—before just about anyone else was. And now Park, the maestro of Claymation, unleashes his first full-length Claymation effort…
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    Stephen Dedman

  • My schedule for Swancon

    Stephen Dedman
    15 Apr 2014 | 9:30 am
    Friday, 17.30: Who Would Live There? The Reality of SF/Fantasy Worlds.Saturday, 16.30: Shakespeare Retold: The Good, the Bad and the Unexpected.Sunday, 22.00: Editing Erotica, Publishing Porn.Monday, 10.30: What My Library Meant to Me.
  • Ars gratia artis, pecunium propter Deum *

    Stephen Dedman
    24 Mar 2014 | 9:17 am
    On a day when the federal attorney-general defended bigotry as a right (though we don't actually have a Bill of Rights), hot on the heels of the far-right abominable Tony Abbott announcing that there will be no investigation of a murder committed in the Manus Island concentration camp, it would have been easy to fail to notice this story from the New York Times about auction houses fighting a bill that would give visual artists royalties from the resale of their work.However, this intrigued me in the light of the information that Glenn Brown, the Turner Prize nominee who ripped off a Chris…
  • Zombies and robots and cats, oh my!

    Stephen Dedman
    1 Feb 2014 | 1:04 am
    2013 wasn't quite as bad as its portrayal in The Postman - although, incredibly, it did seem to drag on for even longer. I wrote quite a lot, including finishing my novel What Rough Beast?, but sadly, I had very little new work published apart from a short story in Shadowrun Returns. Fortunately, the drought will soon be broken: my novella 'Farewell to the Master' will be appearing in Zombies vs Robots: No Man's Land in April, and there will be more new stories coming out in 2014.We now return you to your regular internet programming: pictures of cats. This is Pepper, aka Rescue, the latest…
  • Not a NaNoWriMo update

    Stephen Dedman
    15 Nov 2013 | 8:11 am
    I've decided not to do NaNoWriMo this year. Too much of the first half of the month was taking up with marking assignments, though I did manage to: finish revising What Rough Beast? and send it to my beta readers; start, finish and submit finish my story for Cthulhu: Deep Down Under; start playing Batman: Arkham City; and trek down to Mandurah twice, once to see Spare Parts Puppet Theatre's production of Tales from Outer Suburbia, and once to catch up with Lee and Lyn Battersby.I've also watched a few movies, including Robot and Frank, a hot contender for the title of "most depressing movie…
  • Helium-filled airplane could help in disaster zones - tech - 12 November 2013 - New Scientist

    Stephen Dedman
    14 Nov 2013 | 10:38 pm
    Helium-filled airplane could help in disaster zones - tech - 12 November 2013 - New Scientist
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    A.M. Dellamonica

  • Toronto, Day 335

    17 Apr 2014 | 8:59 am
    I am still working on answering Blaise’s question: are editors still needed? And I’m pondering your other questions, excited about answering them, and grateful to know what interests you. If you haven’t weighed in yet and there’s something you want to know, tell me! I’m happily building up the list of requests. In the meantime, a few current snippets of news from the land of Dua Moving Insanity: –We got the keys to the new place this week, and floors are going in. The shower may be leaky, so we’re going to look into fixing it ASAP. Since it’s…
  • Tell me what to write! (the saga continues)

    12 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    As a new experiment in having a blog that doesn’t bore its readers to death, I threw out a query to the Internet yesterday, asking everyone to let me know what you’d like to hear about. Some of my best writing has been assigned: many of my favorite short stories were written for theme anthologies. I had a number of reasons for asking for your input, but chief among them was seeing if the same thing might apply with this space. Questions so far: Escape Clause editor Clélie Rich wants to know where we’re moving to, and why. Paul Weimer of SF Signal asks: Do you have a map for…
  • What things make a post?

    11 Apr 2014 | 12:53 pm
    First, a heartfelt thank you to everyone who sent some bit of support or kindness about our loss of Rumble, whether by Twitter or FB or in an e-mail. I tried to answer as many of you as possible; if I missed you, know that it was appreciated. I also want to mention that VEC on Yonge Street gave us all outstanding care. I endorse them without reservation, and hope you never need to access their services. The condo feels empty, and it’s bizarre to be able to brush my hair without brushing a cat at the same time–someone always insisted–or fold the sheets without first being…
  • Toronto, Day 326

    8 Apr 2014 | 9:00 am
    It has almost been a year. It’s no coincidence that we’re moving, again, as the anniversary nears. The plan was always to rent a place here for the first year, scope out the neighborhoods, and then commit. Kelly and I were both so unfamiliar with Toronto that to do anything else seemed nutty beyond words. (Though jumping in without a clue is how we chose our Vancouver neighborhood, also sight unseen, and that worked out.) Our soon to be former apartment is coming to be known as “the King Street place” or variations thereon. We haven’t been here long enough to…
  • Did you like Captain America? (Eff Yeah!)

    7 Apr 2014 | 9:59 am
    Here&;s a picture of me with the actor Cineplex hired to Cap it up outside the theater after Friday&;s screening. He was pleasant and fun, and who doesn&;t enjoy a superhero selfie? Things I liked about the movie: Steve: I am coming to like his character more and more. He may be the straightest straight-arrow since Constable Benton Fraser&; in other words, catnip. What&;s more, he&;s pleasingly…
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    Cory Doctorow's

  • Video: Bart Gellman and me opening for Ed Snowden at SXSW

    Cory Doctorow
    17 Apr 2014 | 4:18 am
    Last month, Barton Gellman and I opened for Edward Snowden's first-ever public appearance, at the SXSW conference in Austin. The kind folks at SXSW have put the video online (the Snowden video itself was already up). I think we did a good job of framing the big questions raised by the Snowden leaks.
  • Homeland Audiobook

    15 Apr 2014 | 1:36 am
    Wil Wheaton reads this independently produced audio edition of Homeland, which also includes Jacob Appelbaum's reading of his own afterword, and Noah Swartz reading his brother Aaron Swartz's afterword.
  • My “Futuristic Tales of the Here and Now” in Vodo’s indie science fiction bundle: comics, movies, novels, and more!

    Cory Doctorow
    11 Apr 2014 | 4:22 pm
    Jamie from Vodo writes, "We've launched Otherworlds, our first indie sci-fi bundle! This pay-what-you-want, crossmedia collection includes the graphic novel collecting Cory's own 'Futuristic Tales of the Here and Now', Jim Munroe's micro-budget sci-fi satire 'Ghosts With Shit Jobs', Robert Venditti's New York Times Bestselling graphic novel 'The Surrogates', and Amber Benson/Adam Busch's alien office farce, 'Drones'. Check out the whole bundle and choose your own price 5% of earnings go to the Electronic Frontier Foundation!" I love Vodo -- they produce gorgeous, high-quality science fiction…
  • Homeland audiobook, read by Wil Wheaton, is back on

    Cory Doctorow
    11 Apr 2014 | 3:42 pm
    For those of you who missed the audiobook in which Wil Wheaton reads my novel Homeland in the Humble Ebook Bundle, despair no longer! You can buy it DRM-free on the excellent, a site with many DRM-free audio titles. Homeland (audiobook)
  • Why I don’t believe in robots

    Cory Doctorow
    2 Apr 2014 | 2:02 am
    My new Guardian column is "Why it is not possible to regulate robots," which discusses where and how robots can be regulated, and whether there is any sensible ground for "robot law" as distinct from "computer law." One thing that is glaringly absent from both the Heinleinian and Asimovian brain is the idea of software as an immaterial, infinitely reproducible nugget at the core of the system. Here, in the second decade of the 21st century, it seems to me that the most important fact about a robot – whether it is self-aware or merely autonomous – is the operating system, configuration,…
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    Notes from New Sodom

  • 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.
  • Caledonia Dreamin' Review

    Hal Duncan
    20 Mar 2014 | 8:14 am
    Caledonia Dreamin' is a unique and well edited anthology of strange fiction of Scottish descent. It's a daring and original glimpse into Scotland, the Scots language and Scottish culture. Each story is based on or inspired by a Scots word. It was truly a pleasure to read this anthology, because I don't remember reading anything similar ever before. There have been plenty of anthologies
  • Review for Rhapsody

    Hal Duncan
    19 Mar 2014 | 2:35 pm
    Hal Duncan, in Rhapsody: Notes on Strange Fictions, turns a critical eye to the genre of SF—considering not just the turf wars and definitional spats, but also the deeper functions and facilities of the “strange fiction” mode in literature. Employing sardonic and often cutting analysis delivered within convincing theoretical frames, Duncan deposes various received-wisdom ideas about the
  • Sodom

    Hal Duncan
    17 Mar 2014 | 1:57 pm
    Sing of the angels of Moloch vomiting word infernal snake-jaws dislocated wrenched as backs arched in purgation spasms of napalm fire-hose hurled forth to incinerate fair citizens of my Sodom the abomination in steel eyes of a clockwork Tetragrammaton gazing down from hypoxian Himalayan perch in onyx vaulted heaven a-spatter with starlight of seraphim
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    A Blister to My Eye

  • Dogs and ham

    12 Apr 2014 | 3:36 pm
    One of Leonore's language students brings her incredibly cute little dog with her. The dog makes a beeline for me because I always greet her with a treat — a rolled up smoked mozzarella and proscuitto delight from Costco. What dog wouldn't like that? Well, maybe a Moslem or Jewish dog. But dogs are considered unclean by Moslems, so maybe there are no Moslem dogs. There are certainly Jewish ones (leaving aside the whole circumcision thing). An old insult for Jews in Medieval England — or at least, in historical novels — was "dog of a Jew". I guess a Jewish dog would be a Jew of…
  • MPAD Memoirs

    4 Apr 2014 | 6:30 pm
    Which would be a nifty title, but I don't know what the title will be. MPAD = Mission Planning and Analysis Division, simply the utterly most important and core part of what was then NASA's Manned Spacecraft Center (later renamed Johnson Space Center) in (south of) Houston. (Others who worked there, but not in MPAD, might disagree.) (They'd be wrong.) Recently, a former MPAD coworker of mine from the days of the Apollo Project contacted me to say he was interviewing people who worked at MPAD at the time of the moon landings. He's my age and also retired, and he drives around the country quite…
  • It’s not the Christian Bible, damn it

    1 Apr 2014 | 7:54 pm
    It's silly of me to be annoyed by this, given that I'm an atheist. Nonetheless it annoys me considerably. Thanks to the Noah movie and to today's date*, there has been a spurt of references to the Bible in the online places I frequent. I keep seeing the Flood and Psalms, both in the Old Testament, referred to as being in the Christian Bible. No, sirree. They're in the Old Testament, a.k.a. the Hebrew Bible.** The fact that Christians have incorporated the OT into their religion is irrelevant. Moslems have incorporated much of the OT and the NT into their religion, too, but that doesn't make…
  • Continuum’s Height Problem

    19 Feb 2014 | 12:38 pm
    I like the TV show Continuum and its twisty time-travel switcheroos. I'm always a sucker for those, in any show. I wonder how the various mysteries will be resolved, assuming they are all resolved when the show finishes its run. But the one mystery that I find annoying rather than intriguing is Alec Sadler's height. In the present, he's about 20 years old. He's shorter than almost everyone else, including Kiera. In scenes set in the future, he's in his mid-eighties. Unless future medicine has solved the problem of people getting shorter in old age, he would have lost some height since his max…
  • Thor Didn’t Thunder, and Oblivion Should Not Have Been Consigned to Oblivion

    13 Feb 2014 | 7:06 pm
    I keep a lookout for the cable appearances of big-budget sf/f/h movies that I skipped in the theaters. Then I record them to watch while exercising. After watching such a recording, I sometimes regret that I didn't see it on the big screen, but more often I'm glad that I saved the money and time. I can’t say what effect watching a movie while grappling with a heavy weight has on my judgment, but presumably if it does induce a bias, the bias is the same for all of the movies I watch while exercising. Recently, I watched Thor and Oblivion this way. Because of how the two performed in…
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    But Enough About Me!

  • Bestselling Women’s Fiction Book Club: The Best of Everything

    Kate Elliott
    17 Apr 2014 | 1:31 am
    Justine Larbalestier and I have started a book club to talk about bestselling women’s fiction of the 20th century. We’re both curious about the whole idea of the publishing category of “women’s fiction,” particularly how and when that label started. And, of course, we also wanted to see how well the bestselling and most long lasting of the books with that label stand up. Because usually books like Valley of the Dolls (1966) and Rona Jaffe’s The Best of Everything (1958) and Grace Metalious’s Peyton Place (1958) are considered to be, at best, middle brow. Yet now some of these…
  • The Squee of Ile-Rien: Comments on Martha Wells’ Fall of Ile-Rien Trilogy

    Kate Elliott
    26 Feb 2014 | 12:58 pm
    I don’t review books. I don’t have the temperament for it. But I’ve made a bit of a promise to myself this year to talk more about books I’ve read and am reading. I won’t mention everything I’ve read because I won’t keep up, but I’ll do my best. On March 12/March 13 (Hawaii/Australia time) Justine Larbalestier and I are going to begin a discussion of women’s fiction, old school blockbusters. We begin with Jacqueline Susann’s VALLEY OF THE DOLLS. But I do not like to neglect my first and most heartfelt love, sff. So today, fellow…
  • A Valentine For My Readers (A Spiritwalker Story)

    Kate Elliott
    14 Feb 2014 | 12:33 am
    Dear Readers, There are days when the work flies through me and I am mighty. There are days when the work is one long slog of dragging weights behind me in the form of recalcitrant, uncooperative words. There are days I sit in despair staring at a wall mottled with self doubt. There are days I write like it is my job, which is not a bad thing when one has (presumably) skill and competence and a love for one’s work. But every day I appreciate YOU, the ones reading my books. I am grateful that you read them AT ALL. (I’m still kind of amazed by that.) I can work as a writer because…
  • Con or Bust Auction 2014

    Kate Elliott
    9 Feb 2014 | 10:36 pm
    Con or Bust helps people of color/non-white people attend SFF conventions (how to request assistance; upcoming cons). It is administered by Kate Nepveu (that’s me) under the umbrella of the Carl Brandon Society, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization whose mission is to increase racial and ethnic diversity in the production of and audience for speculative fiction. Con or Bust isn’t a scholarship and isn’t limited by geography, type of con-goer, or con; its goal is simply to help fans of color go to SFF cons and be their own awesome selves. Con or Bust is funded through donations and an…
  • Con or Bust Auction: Signed Set of Spiritwalker Trilogy + Secret Journal

    Kate Elliott
    5 Feb 2014 | 12:19 pm
    Item Name & Description: Two signed sets of Kate Elliott’s Spiritwalker series (Cold Magic, Cold Fire, Cold Steel, and The Secret Journal of Beatrice Hassi Barahal) The author describes this series as “an Afro-Celtic post-Roman icepunk Regency fantasy adventure with airships, Phoenician spies, the intelligent descendents of troodons, and a dash of steampunk whose gas lamps can be easily doused by the touch of a powerful cold mage.” Publishers Weekly calls it “a swashbuckling series marked by fascinating world-building, lively characters, and a gripping, thoroughly satisfying…
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    Talk in the Shadows

  • 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!
  • New Author Website!

    30 Mar 2014 | 11:26 am
    I've finally been able to replace my poor mangy old website!
  • Author's Copies in My Mail Today!

    11 Mar 2014 | 1:41 pm
    Note: If you were announced as a winner of a book or the grand prize, please respond to this thread, and message me your address. I haven't heard from most of you. If you already sent me the info, please send again. That is all. You may now gaze and enjoy. ;)
  • Fairy Tales

    7 Jan 2014 | 2:57 pm
    Over the holidays I watched Disney's Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty. The message in both that I got was: Fairies, no matter how well-intentioned, are disempowering and princes are pretty much useless. In the Brother's Grimm versions Cinderella/Ashenputtel made her own magic with her great virtue. And Sleeping Beauty/Aurora/The Princess was a passive airhead and the prince didn't have to fight his way to her because he just happened to show up at the right time when the spell broke and the briar hedge receded on its own. In this case, I have to say I liked the Disney version better. Excellent…
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    The official home page of author Eric Flint

  • 1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 21

    Drak Bibliophile
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:00 pm
    1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 21 Ann nodded, was aware of Bauernfeld’s confused gape. He followed their eyes, but did not know what to look at. Which in this case was the swivel atop the spinning drill string. That had been the most problematic piece of machinery to make reliable and robust. Not the swivel itself — that was a fairly straightforward fabrication job — but where the flexible mud hose connected to it. While the hose did not fully “spin” with the swivel, there was a lot of random and varying motion imparted to it as the…
  • 1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 20

    Drak Bibliophile
    15 Apr 2014 | 10:00 pm
    1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 20 Ulrich had reached the rig, seemed to dart around looking for something. Or someone, Ann corrected. He was clearly trying to find who was in charge, who had overridden today’s suspension of operations. From far behind her private cabin, Ann heard another engine kick into life with a roar. That was an up-time sound, the engine on Dave Willcock’s pick-up truck. Good, so that meant he was on his way. Ann didn’t like that he was up and about, but right now, her strongest sensation was relief. No one back-talked…
  • 1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 19

    Drak Bibliophile
    13 Apr 2014 | 11:00 pm
    1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 19 Chapter 11 Undisclosed location near Wietze, USE Ann Koudsi finished her morning cup of broth — it had been unseasonably chilly overnight — and nosed back into her books and progress charts again. As the second in charge of the rotary drill test rig, and ultimately, the superintendent who would be responsible for the new machine and its crew in the field, it was her job to be The Final Authority on all things pertaining to its operation. That, in turn, meant minor or full mastery of a wide range of topics, including…
  • 1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 18

    Drak Bibliophile
    10 Apr 2014 | 10:00 pm
    1636: Commander Cantrell in the West Indies – Snippet 18 Chapter 10 Thuringia, United States of Europe Major Larry Quinn of the State of Thuringia-Franconia’s National Guard led the way down the last switchback of the game trail, which spilled out into a grassy sward. That bright green carpet of spring growth sloped gently down to where the river wound its way between the ridge they had been on and the rocky outcropping that formed the opposite bank. Quinn looked behind, saw the other two people in the group navigating the declination. One, a young man, did so easily. The other, a…
  • Cauldron of Ghosts – Snippet 46

    Drak Bibliophile
    8 Apr 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Well, this should really be the last snippet. [Smile] Cauldron of Ghosts – Snippet 46 Chapter 27 Colonel Nancy Anderson waited until the Hali Sowle was eight light-minutes away from the trading depot before she said anything about their mission. There was no rational reason for that. If anything they’d said or done or just blind bad luck had given them away to the Manpower personnel staffing the depot, they were as good as dead anyway. At that range, even low-powered missiles carrying small warheads would easily destroy a ship like the Hali Sowle. And whether they’d been…
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    Mad Libs

  • The day is long

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    15 Apr 2014 | 7:57 pm
    Got up at early dark thirty and took the boy for his test in Portland. He got me up twice last night to let me know that he’d been sick, poor kid.  The traffic was more obnoxious than I hoped for, but not as bad as I feared. We got checked in and boy ate his radioactive food, then started getting x-rays. We sat for hours with intermittent x-rays. In one two hour slot, we went to the gift shop where I bought a dragon and earrings. Then we went for a walk (fairly slow) and came back to wait awhile longer and then get the next x-ray. Eventually we got food and drove home. I managed grab a…
  • Bad movie watching

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    12 Apr 2014 | 10:19 pm
    Watched Pitch Perfect. Far more bad language than anticipated, but the girlie loved the music and dancing and there were some moments of fun. Watching Battleship now. Same thing. Moments of fun, lots of action, and humor. Good cast. Not a great movie. But fun on a Saturday night if you don’t look too closely at the plot. The chompy whirley wheel things are awesome. I kind of want the Taylor Kitsch character to morph into Gambit. That would be pretty awesome, wouldn’t it? Tried to do some clothes shopping this morning for Norwescon. I didn’t like anything I was able to find,…
  • Digging through the work

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    10 Apr 2014 | 9:43 pm
    I’ve got deadlines massing. Like when they talk about earthquakes swarming before a volcanic blast. Just like that. I’m working on Trace of Magic revisions, which are coming along nicely. I turned in an essay and expect revision notes soon. I received the next stage of The Cipher along with some other copy to read, and then I received The Black Ship to start revisions on. Plus I need to get then next Crosspointe under way. So pretty much, I’m trying to work and keep up and get stuff done. Meanwhile, boy is still sick. No end in sight. Meanwhile girlie is having trouble…
  • A Horngate Witches Announcement

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    5 Apr 2014 | 8:51 pm
    I’m super pleased and over the moon to be able to tell you that Samhain Publishing has contracted to publish two more books in the Horngate Witches series! The titles will be Bone Dreams and Stone Thaw. I’ll be writing them in 2015, and I’m not sure when the release will be. But so excited!!!! I hope you are too. In other news, boy is still sick. More tests in the offing. He’s also trying a new drug. We went to the first day of the Saturday market today. It was lovely. Lots of starts for the garden and a lot of greens and radishes and that sort of thing. A little bit…
  • Welcome Marianne de Pierres

    Diana Pharaoh Francis
    31 Mar 2014 | 10:14 pm
    Hi Everyone. I’ve talked about Marianne’s books before and I adore them. She’s got a new book out titled Peacemaker. I can’t wait to read it. I’ve got a copy burning through my kindle right now.Before I introduce you to Marianne, here’s a description of Peacemaker:Virgin Jackson is the senior ranger in Birrimun Park – the world’s last natural landscape, overshadowed though it is by a sprawling coastal megacity. She maintains public safety and order in the park, but her bosses have brought out a hotshot cowboy to help her catch some drug runners…
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    Where Personal and Professional Life Collide...

  • Porting over from Tumblr...

    Laura Anne Gilman
    16 Apr 2014 | 6:21 pm
    Because, well, because this episode really nailed me between the eyes, for several reasons. If you haven't seen "Meta Fiction" yet, feel free to avert your eyes....Main thought:  Yep, yep, that’s kind of what it’s like when the characters toss your script and refuse to go along with the plot….and explaining to them that “but this is the plot! You need to follow the outline!” never seems to work…” But the experienced storyteller also knows that sometimes the plot twists, and the ending isn’t quite what you’d originally…
  • turnaround turnaround

    Laura Anne Gilman
    16 Apr 2014 | 1:06 pm
    Tuesday morning: pick up folks and hit the road - in godsawful rain and wind - to Boston. Unpack, decompress, Seder (lovely as always with the extended family), back up this morning to WTFBBQ there's snow on the ground, unpack the ice from the windshield, drive back to NYC, drop off folks, pick up groceries, collapse.29 hour turnaround, total.I'ze tired.Massive amounts of email to unload and answer, work to edit, words to write, and trips to plan. Knowing I'll get it all under control isn't quite the same as having it all under control already.*makes more coffee, adds it to the whiskey*
  • Happy Birthday to the CatofSize!

    Laura Anne Gilman
    15 Apr 2014 | 5:06 am
    Today is Cat-of-Size's Birthday (Observed).  Observed, because nobody's actually sure quite how old he was when I adopted him, so...But having his birthday observed on tax day always made sense to me, considering how much he's cost me over the years...Happy tenth-or-eleven-ish Birthday, Boomerang, Cat of Little Brain, Fool of a Took, Meatloaf-in-Trainaing, Cat of Size!20042014
  • Wild and Crazy Weekend...

    Laura Anne Gilman
    13 Apr 2014 | 4:02 pm
    As previously posted, Saturday I spent working, sunning, and being moderately social.  And then I hibernated. Part of me was sad not to be out and about on a Saturday night as well (I'd declined a party). The other part - hip-deep in maps, motel recommendations, and Other Trip-Planning Accoutrements - was kinda glad to be home, feet up, a glass of my house whiskey at my elbow and cats asleep at my hip...Yeah, I'm a hobbit. Your point?Sunday I....slept in (after a brief wake-up to feed and stick the cats) until noon. At that point, my plan to haul the bike out of the storage room…
  • Ahhhhh, Spring.

    Laura Anne Gilman
    12 Apr 2014 | 2:19 pm
    When a freelancer's mind turns to thoughts of... working outside.  And yes, I DID get work done, oh ye of no faith whatsoever...(The park is Inwood Hill, the bridge is the Henry Hudson, and past that you can see [barely] the Palisades)And yes, due to a day spent in the sun.... the freckles have reappeared. I need to remember my *&^& hat next time....
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  • The Princess in Black (and white, and full color)

    Shannon Hale
    14 Apr 2014 | 7:58 am
    Ack, another super busy day, but I don't want to end my streak of posting each Monday. So if you haven't seen it, here's the cover for The Princess in Black, first in our early chapter book series publishing with Candlewick in October 2014! 80 pages, full color illustrations on each spread by the fantastic LeUyen Pham. I personally can't wait till this comes out so I can buy extra copies for everyone I know. I'm smitten!
  • I am not accessible

    Shannon Hale
    7 Apr 2014 | 8:56 am
    I just read through some accumulated emails that go to my public account, and quite a few said some variant of "I will no longer read your books if you don't answer my email." Some said it nicely (thank you, sweeties). Some were, frankly my darlings, quite rude. Like, shockingly rude and demanding.A few years ago, I had a choice. I could 1. answer all my emails or 2. write more books. I chose books. I know that disappoints you and I'm sorry. I don't like disappointing people. But it is not appropriate to threaten and bully people into getting what you want. I…
  • Two Dangerous covers

    Shannon Hale
    31 Mar 2014 | 7:32 am
    Very busy week. No time to post! Here's a cheat post so I can keep up my goal of blogging every Monday. The UK cover of Dangerous is almost the same as the US. What do you think? Which do you prefer?
  • Ever After High book 2 vs. too-good-to-be-true-anxiety

    Shannon Hale
    24 Mar 2014 | 9:13 am
    This week, EVER AFTER HIGH: The Unfairest of Them All (the 2nd EAH novel) publishes into the world. I have had such a blast with these books. The second book follows the aftermath of what happened in the first, again following Apple and Raven (though Maddie, as always, plays a big part, and Cerise fans will be happy to read more of her story...) Arizona: see me Tuesday, March 24, 7pm, at Changing Hands Utah: see me Saturday, March 29, 2pm, at The King's English I'm not doing a full book tour for this book because I just finished a tour on Friday for Dangerous. And I couldn't do…
  • In which I say "toot"

    Shannon Hale
    17 Mar 2014 | 8:00 am
    The Dangerous tour continues. I'm in the mid-West this week. And Utahns, don't forget the annual Writing for Charity one-day writing conference for beginning, intermediate, and advanced writers. In addition to traveling I'm on deadline, so instead of writing a new blog post I'm lazily pasting in some blurbs and reviews. Is that tacky? That's probably tacky, isn't it? But...but did you know Dangerous is a Spring 2014 Kids' Indie Next book? Also tacky to mention? Nevermind, I have this horn here and I'm going to toot it. (teehee, I said toot) "Fast…
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    the m john harrison blog

  • the view from miller

    17 Apr 2014 | 12:22 am
    A record of several decades spent successfully deranging a willing audience, The Art of Ian Miller features all the images you remember & some you don’t– And here’s Henry Farrell at Crooked Timber, talking about Ian’s strong vision of Mammy Vooley as a politically-exhausted Maggie Thatcher.
  • covering policies

    16 Apr 2014 | 1:49 am
    British book covers are improving at last. But they could improve further. Bluemoose Books shows the way with this gorgeous example by Andrew Bannerman Bayles, who can be found here. Beastings, by Ben Myers: available now from Bluemoose Books.
  • lug butter

    13 Apr 2014 | 12:35 am
    I enjoyed this, so here it is again– Lug butter is retrieved by a new process, from the ears of drowning men. Lug butter: lardy, creamy & relaxed about being rich. Lug butter’s everywhere this season. It seeps out while you sleep. Interesting facts about lug butter: it was originally used to make crosses on top of Hot Cross Buns! What’s the better bit of butter that leaves everything looking new? Many answer, “Lug butter’s all we need to know.” Remember our slogan: “Guv loves lug butter.” We all eat lug butter. Eat lug butter now.
  • 8 Apr 2014 | 1:33 am

    8 Apr 2014 | 1:33 am
  • anti surrealism

    5 Apr 2014 | 3:36 am
    The naive, the unconstructed, the accidental ghost. The ghost from the faded polaroid found in a shoebox of letters from someone else’s life. Things that might not be there; things that have no existence other than possibly not being there; things that can only have your attention drawn to them. Reading should be as close as possible to discovering those letters and seeing something in them that might not be there. The writer should offer the shoebox, or better still the stall at the flea market on which the shoebox might be found. I’m not interested in any other way of writing…
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    Something to Talk About

  • Fulbright & Hawkes & Brian Moreland to appear at The Harbor Culture Series 2014, April 24th 7-9 pm

    14 Apr 2014 | 5:26 pm
  • Register to win this beautiful doll from Land of Oz Dolls!

    24 Mar 2014 | 10:56 am
    Sign up to win this random drawing chosen Beautiful DOLL offered by Connie Zink from Land of Oz Dolls! This beautiful Cherie Limoge doll is a Bleuette friend (about 10 inches tall). All that is requested is your name/email. This beautiful doll is valued at $350. If you don't want it you can always donate it to some special child or give it as a gift! Random drawing will be held on Easter Sunday at 8:00 PMSign up here:
  • 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…
  • Homemade Biodegradable Fiber Seed-Starting/Transplanting Pots

    11 Mar 2014 | 1:34 pm
    Homemade Biodegradable Fiber Seed-Starting/Transplanting PotsIn a previous blog entry, I wrote about how to make your own seed starter box from a biodegradable egg carton. This entry takes that concept a little further. If you’re like me and start your seeds early indoors, sometimes the seedling begins to outgrow the little egg cup and needs transplanted to yet a larger pot before it can be moved to the garden.Many seed and garden companies sell biodegradable fiber pots, but why buy something you can make for mere pennies? Sure, the homemade versions might not LOOK as pretty and uniform…
  • Got Sauce? Homemade Barbeque Sauce

    26 Feb 2014 | 11:35 am
    Got Sauce? Homemade Barbeque SauceI shop to stock my pantry instead of shopping to fill a specific menu on a nightly or weekly basis. Staples are bought as they go on sale or in bulk so I always have on hand what is needed. Sometimes I cheat and buy pre-made sauces, such as barbeque sauce. Occasionally I find I don’t have a store-bought item stocked, so it is necessary to make my own for whatever I have planned for the night’s dinner.This barbeque sauce contains typical ingredients found in most kitchens. Cooking time is about an hour. The longer you cook it, the more it will…
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    People are strange, when you're a stranger . . .

  • Random drive-by update

    18 Apr 2014 | 5:18 am
    Five deer in yards and street down the road.  No wabbits.  Fox squirrels look as big as woodchucks..
  • 15 Apr 2014 | 6:51 pm

    15 Apr 2014 | 6:51 pm
    A skunk is making its presence felt . . .
  • Gray

    15 Apr 2014 | 5:56 am
    Not actually raining.  Here.  Yet.  Warmish -- 54 F for the newspaper walk, with stiff breeze from the south, and damp.  We're under "flood watch" for the entire state, actually much of New England, into tomorrow evening.  Melting, ice dams on the rivers, and a couple of inches of rain will do that for you.Internet activity will be limited and spotty for the next week.  You may rejoice now.  In a seemly manner, please.
  • Windy bike

    14 Apr 2014 | 11:49 am
    Sun came out, temperature leaped up into the 60s F, roads sorta dried off.  So of course I got out on the bike.  I have hopes that the local municipalities may someday run street-sweepers and remove some of the winter grit . . . before it all ends up in my lungs.  Wind gusting near 30 mph, not necessary in a  properly ordered world.About 10 miles, 55 minutes
  • Fog

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:52 am
    Dank morning, 41 F, calm.  Even the song sparrows sing quiet little songs, as if to themselves.  Usually, I'm surprised at how much sound comes out of those tiny throats . . .Need to adjust the garage door tracks, which are now binding the door as frost leaves the ground.  And as the garage slowly rots and settles around them.Tsar Vladimir prepares his next hostile takeover.
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    Jim C. Hines

  • Shades of Milk and Honey, by Mary Robinette Kowal

    Jim C. Hines
    16 Apr 2014 | 3:56 pm
    I will be totally, absolutely honest with you here. I wasn’t really expecting to like Mary Robinette Kowal‘s Shades of Milk and Honey [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy]. It’s nothing to do with Kowal or her writing. I’ve adored other things I’ve read by her. I’ve nominated and voted for some of her work for various awards. She’s a good writer. But this one just didn’t look or sound like my kind of book. The description, “Like Jane Austen wrote a fantasy novel” didn’t hit any of my buttons, and I’m afraid the cover art…
  • Invisible is Live!

    Jim C. Hines
    15 Apr 2014 | 6:30 am
    As of today, Invisible is officially a thing! In addition to the guest blog posts featured on the blog, the e-book anthology includes bonus material from Alex Dally MacFarlane, Gabriel Cuellar, Nonny Blackthorne, and Ithiliana. It’s on sale for $2.99 at the following sites, and I’m hoping to add to this list as other retailer links go live. All proceeds will go to the Carl Brandon Society for Con or Bust. Amazon Barnes and Noble Kobo Smashwords Google Play I learned a lot from this project. I think these essays do a marvelous job of answering the question, “Why does…
  • Commencing Decade Five

    Jim C. Hines
    14 Apr 2014 | 6:31 am
    I’ll be turning 40 tomorrow, so I figured I’d take a few minutes today to look back at the decades… Age 10. I finished up 4th grade and started 5th. I believe this was the year I broke my arm – the only bone I’ve managed to break so far. This would also be around the time I got published for the very first time, with a joke I stole from my grandfather that appeared in our elementary school newsletter. I was a big fan of G. I. Joe, Transformers, and He-Man. You know – the classics. At that age, I was probably reading a ton of Peanuts and Garfield…
  • Cool Stuff Friday

    Jim C. Hines
    11 Apr 2014 | 6:31 am
    Hail Friday! 26 Majestic Dogs. (Spoiler: dogs in images may be somewhat less majestic than advertised.) Action Bill: Bill Shatner vs. Bill Shakespeare, in LEGO stop-motion animation. Photos of dogs in mid-headshake. Googly eyes on books. (Must try this on some of my books…) Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.
  • Five Days as a Pre-Borg (Diabetes Related)

    Jim C. Hines
    9 Apr 2014 | 6:30 am
    Last Thursday, I went in to get set up for a five-day run with a continuous glucose monitor (CGM). Quick overview – with type one diabetes, the pancreas up and quits producing insulin, because it’s a LAZY SLACKER! Therefore, I take insulin via an insulin pump, which delivers a baseline dose throughout the day, and allows me to program additional insulin when I eat. I check my blood sugar about six times a day to help me keep it within a relatively healthy range. The CGM is a device that automatically checks your blood sugar every five minutes. It automatically sounds an alert if…
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    Nicholas Kaufmann's Journal

  • “Hardboiled Horror” Now Online

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    16 Apr 2014 | 8:06 am
    My article for the exemplary Nightmare Magazine, “The H Word: Hardboiled Horror,” is now available to read for free on their website. Here’s a snippet: Some of the best authors of horror and dark fantasy have been utilizing noir for decades now. William Hjortsberg’s famous novel Falling Angel dates back to 1978 (and was adapted into the movie Angel Heart in 1987). It features a hardboiled private investigator, Harry Angel, who takes on a missing person case that turns into a phantasmagoria of ritual murders, voodoo, and Satanism. Peter Straub’s novels Koko and The…
  • The Scariest Part: James Maddox & Jen Hickman Talk About THE DEAD

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    15 Apr 2014 | 6:52 am
    Welcome to the inaugural edition of The Scariest Part, a new, 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. I’m thrilled to have James Maddox and Jen Hickman as my first guests. Together, they’re the creators behind the ongoing digital comic The Dead. Currently, they’re also running a Kickstarter campaign to fund a graphic novel print version of the comic. Here’s a description of the series: When Sam opens his eyes after…
  • Announcing “The Scariest Part”

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    14 Apr 2014 | 5:12 am
    In the tradition of John Scalzi’s “The Big Idea,” Mary Robinette Kowal’s “My Favorite Bit,” and Chuck Wendig’s “Five Things I Learned,” and with their blessings and advice, I am very excited to announce that I will be starting a recurring, guest-written feature right here on my own blog: “The Scariest Part”! The first guest blog post should be appearing this week. The guidelines are below and can also be found on this permanent page of my website: The Scariest Part. As of today, I am open to queries. Please read the guidelines…
  • Goldenland Past Dark

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    13 Apr 2014 | 1:18 pm
    Goldenland Past Dark by Chandler Klang Smith My rating: 4 of 5 stars An accomplished and beautifully written debut novel from an author from whom I’m sure we’ll be hearing a lot more. A coterie of circus “freaks,” a cynical helper monkey, and a seriously disturbed family all share the spotlight in this affecting tale of a circus clown named Webern who is losing his grip on sanity. Webern may be the protagonist, but it’s the female characters in his life who are the most interesting to me: Nepenthe, the reluctant “lizard girl” of the freak show; Bo-Bo,…
  • Reading on Sunday, May 4th in New York City

    International Bon Vivant and Raconteur
    10 Apr 2014 | 8:50 am
    Hey, everyone! I’m going to be doing a reading on Sunday, May 4th, along with Chandler Klang Smith and Karen Heuler! (Aside from being amazing authors, Chandler and Karen have also been published by ChiZine Publications, the same folks who published my novella Chasing the Dragon. We’re CZP family!) Where: The HiFi Bar, 169 Avenue A, at 11th Street. We’ll be in the back room, unless lots of people show up, in which case we’ll take over the bar. Please help us take over the bar! When: Sunday, May 4th, from 5pm to 7pm. Admission is free! Drinks will be cheap and…
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    Dear Sweet Filthy World

  • LJ Entry #4,071: Sort of The End

    15 Apr 2014 | 9:03 am
    I've been awake since about 8:45 a.m., and I've been sitting here since about 9 a.m., and a lot of that time has been spent trying to think how to wrap this up. And knowing full well that nothing's ever wrapped up. Summations are never anything but cursory. So, I've been sitting here, and I've been procrastinating. I've even been trying to weasel out of my decision. For example, I said to Kathryn, "Well, it could go on until 10 a.m. on October 10th, the tenth hours of the tenth month of the tenth year. There's an elegance in that." Right.Here is Providence, it's turning cold again – same as…
  • American Museum of Natural History, 1937

    14 Apr 2014 | 10:36 pm
    The original Tyrannosaurus mount (which actually went up in 1915):
  • "Follow my fast fading heart."

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:22 pm
    And here I am, on the twentieth anniversary of my move to Athens, Georgia from Birmingham, Alabama. It was a move that changed everything for me. Probably, it was a move that saved my life, literally/ And I feel like, somehow, I ought to have been able to mark it today, but I wasn't. I left only three years after I arrived, on August 9th, 1997. That was, I know in retrospect, a mistake. I should have stayed. But I had reasons that seemed valid at the time. They seem little more now but sad and naïve.Today, twenty years ago, I left the apartment at #5 1619 16th Avenue South in Birmingham —…
  • "All astride on her father's line, with the King and his concubine."

    13 Apr 2014 | 10:07 am
    Sirenia Digest #98 went out to subscribers this morning.Cooler and overcast so far today, but yesterday was nice. Spooky and I had a walk around the neighborhood, something I only very rarely do. Indeed, I've lived here, in this House built in 1875, almost six years now, and I am ashamed to say that my understanding of the neighborhood's geography is murky. I couldn't draw you a map. Anyway, there were flowers and the beginnings of leaves, a reassuring willow and genuinely warm sunlight. Here in mid April, Providence is managing a decent bit of March weather. There are photos behind the cut,…
  • "Tuck a cloud up under my chin. Lord, blow the moon out, please."

    12 Apr 2014 | 10:09 am
    No Seroquel last night, and it was a rough night. But I saw my dreams again. Hopefully, tonight I'll be so exhausted that it'll be easier to sleep without those tiny red demons. It's a step in the right direction, now that the millstone of Cherry Bomb is no longer hung about my neck.Currently, it's 65˚F, but feels like 67˚F. There's a breeze, a nip in the air coming in through my open window. Sunny. Classic cold spring.Numerals are called for today.1. I want to write out an account of the whole Kathleen Tierney fiasco, which is really an account of how quickly any given publishing project…
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    Mindy Klasky - Virtual Cocktails

  • Pics of Hot Men (and More!)

    Mindy Klasky
    16 Apr 2014 | 6:22 am
    I’m not a big believer in “Man Candy Monday” and “Friday Man Wars” and the like – I understand what they’re doing on a sociological basis, as women take back their sexuality and proclaim that they can be sexual creatures before anyone can shame them for such and all that academic stuff, but it’s just not me, to post lots of pics of naked and near-naked guys. That said, I *had* to looks at lots of pics of naked and near-naked guys to evaluate the covers for the Diamond Brides Series.  In fact, designing cover art was a major challenge for the…
  • The Magic of Promotion

    Mindy Klasky
    15 Apr 2014 | 7:23 am
    I’m back at Magical Words today, talking about the trials and tribulations (or should I say the *joy*!) of promoting a nine-book series.  Like, you know, my Diamond Brides Series   Here’s the post – I’d love to see you stop by, read, comment, etc! Past posts about the Diamond Brides Series include: Deborah Blake:  Pinterest Pleasures Book View Cafe:  How I Learned to Stop Worry and Love Baseball Patricia Burroughs:  How a Baseball Virgin Becomes a True Fan Doranna…
  • See You at AwesomeCon!

    Mindy Klasky
    15 Apr 2014 | 7:03 am
    So, with all the flurry of activity around here, I kinda, sorta forgot to tell you that I’m going to be on three panels at AwesomeCon!  This large, new media convention is in DC at the downtown Convention Center over this coming weekend — it’s only the second year of the con’s existence, but it’s growing by leaps and bounds!  You can find me here: Friday, April 18, 4:00 – 5:00 – Worldbuilding and Magic, Room 201.  I’ll join Jon Skovron, Lea Nolan, Stuart Jaffe, Jessica Spotswood, Gail Martin, Matthew Bowman, and Eric Menge to discuss what…
  • CATCHING HELL in Stores Today!

    Mindy Klasky
    14 Apr 2014 | 6:00 am
    The second volume of my Diamond Brides Series, CATCHING HELL, is in stores today.  Each of the Diamond Brides books is a fully self-contained hot contemporary romance — you don’t have to read the other short novels in this series to enjoy the one in your hands (or on your ebook reader!) Here’s what CATCHING HELL is all about: Anna Benson is an eager “May” to Zach Ormond’s downright sexy “December”. At age thirty-seven, Zach is a veteran catcher in the last years of his contract, grateful for a no-trade clause that will let him retire a star in Raleigh. …
  • The Best-Laid Plans

    Mindy Klasky
    11 Apr 2014 | 6:19 am
    Often, I’m asked what it’s like to write full-time.  Generally, I answer by explaining that I write on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and I do all my admin work (publicity, promotion, marketing, website updating, etc.) on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  I restrict my socializing to Tuesdays and Thursdays as well, and I fold in grocery shopping, laundry, and other errands on those days. But that’s only part of the story. Every day, I have a to-do list, outlining the specific tasks I need to accomplish.  But some days, new emergencies arise, knocking that to-do list to hell and…
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    Mary Robinette Kowal

  • After eating smoked salmon should one…

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    17 Apr 2014 | 12:00 pm
    a) brush one’s teeth to remove the fishy flavour? b) eat a Thin Mint? The post After eating smoked salmon should one… appeared first on Mary Robinette Kowal.
  • My Favorite Bit: SL Huang talks about ZERO SUM GAME

    Beth Bernier
    17 Apr 2014 | 6:00 am
    SL Huang is joining us today with her novel Zero Sum Game. Here’s the publisher’s description. Deadly. Mercenary. Superhuman. Not your ordinary math geek. Cas Russell is good at math. Scary good. The vector calculus blazing through her head lets her smash through armed men twice her size and dodge every bullet in a gunfight. She can take any job for the right price and shoot anyone who gets in her way. As far as she knows, she’s the only person around with a superpower . . . but then Cas discovers someone with a power even more dangerous than her own. Someone who can reach…
  • KIRKUS gives VALOUR AND VANITY a starred review!

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    15 Apr 2014 | 2:11 pm
    I should note that I’m really excited because this is my first starred review. Happy, happy dances! VALOUR AND VANITY [STARRED REVIEW!] Author: Mary Robinette Kowal Renowned glamourists Lord and Lady Vincent become the victims of an elaborate scam that leaves them in dire straits until they conceive of a daring strategy to strike back. After an extended voyage with her family, Jane and Vincent are anxious to find some time to themselves, traveling to Murano. They have a letter of introduction from the prince regent and hope to work with an artisan to experiment on infusing…
  • Conversation with my 11-year old niece

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    15 Apr 2014 | 2:10 pm
    Niece: I like to wear sneakers with dresses. Me: That seems very practical. Niece: Yeah, because then you can run at formal occasions. Me: Oh… I don’t usually run at formal occasions. Niece: I call it taking advantage of my youth. The post Conversation with my 11-year old niece appeared first on Mary Robinette Kowal.
  • Beta-readers wanted for SF short story

    Mary Robinette Kowal
    15 Apr 2014 | 8:55 am
    This is a 150 word short story. Yes. 150 words. That was the commission and it was harder than a 3000 word story. I need to turn it in today, so if you have a few minutes to read… Just drop your name in the comments on my site (and make sure your email address is correct). The first ten or so people with free time, I’ll send the password to. Thanks! EDITED TO ADD: I’ll all set. I’ve got a good spread of readers on this. Many, many thanks for helping with the tight turnaround. The post Beta-readers wanted for SF short story appeared first on Mary Robinette Kowal.
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    Justine Larbalestier

  • Spoiling Spoily Spoilers

    15 Apr 2014 | 10:21 pm
    I used to hate spoilers. I didn’t care what it was—a book, an ad, a shopping list—I didn’t want to know what happened until it happened. I wouldn’t read the back of books or movie posters or reviews. I wanted to know as little as possible before going in. I thrived on surprise. Now this would sometimes backfire. If I’d known a bit about Taken (2008) I would never have watched it on the plane. I just saw that Liam Neeson was in it. I used to like Liam Neeson. He was dead good in Rob Roy.1 But Taken? Worst. Most Appallingly Immoral. Movie. Of. All. Time. If I…
  • Don’t Do What I Did: On Writing Historicals

    8 Apr 2014 | 8:27 pm
    I started my professional life as an academic. I spent my days researching, making notes, writing scholarly tomes, delivering papers, supervising the occasional student.1 Starting when I was in the final year of my undergraduate degree I made a note of every single article and book I read, which included year of publication, where and who published it, in addition to jotting down any relevant quotes, and what I thought of it. In addition, everything I read was festooned with a forest of post-it notes. I had such good habits. I was a model of good researcherliness.2 But then I left academia. I…
  • In which I speak of Razorhurst in front of a Camera

    2 Apr 2014 | 3:57 pm
    As I may have mentioned once or twice I have a new book, Razorhurst, set on the seedy streets of Sydney in 1932 and packed with deliciously dangerous dames and brutal, bloodthirsty blokes.1 It’ll be published in Australia and New Zealand by Allen and Unwin in July and in the USA by Soho Teen in March 2015.2 The good people at Allen & Unwin made this vid in which I answer some questions about the book: Very happy to answer any other questions you might have about it. Yes, it will be available as an ebook. No, I don’t use product to get my hair to do that. The alliteration is…
  • Dear Person Yelling at Me

    30 Mar 2014 | 2:46 pm
    Dear Person Yelling Questions at Me from their Car while I am on My Bike Waiting for the Lights to Change, My face is redder than red because I’ve just left a very intense hour of boxing training where my beloved trainer took me at my word that I wished to work very hard.1 The jacket I’m wearing is not, in fact, making me hot. It is a fine example of modern engineering with multiple vents letting in all the cool air while still keeping Australia’s vicious sun off my delicate, pasty skin. Also, and this may shock you, Yelly Driver Person, when one cycles at speed it can get…
  • Getting Away

    19 Mar 2014 | 4:20 pm
    One of the things I need most as a writer is a routine. For me that’s not as much about what time of day I write, that varies, but about where I write. When I sit at my ergonomically gorgeous desk and writing set up I write because it is the place of writing. Unlike many other writers I don’t have a specific moment that signals writing will commence. I don’t drink coffee so that’s not how I start my day. Some days I write for a bit before breakfast. Some days not till after brekkie, going to the gym, and doing various chores. I do have a broad time for writing:…
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    SF and Nonsense

  • Going postal. Or: The stats, stat.

    15 Apr 2014 | 7:00 am
    About three years ago I first compiled a list/overview of what were then the most visited posts here at SF and Nonsense. To my surprise, Postscript (or is that post post?) was itself instantly popular. It remains third on the all-time list.And so, an annual tradition was born.  Serious posts :-)From a stats snapshot I captured a few days ago (thanks, Blogger!), here's the complete all-time top-ten list.Of moons, clouds, and the state of the art(s), a general science-and-tech news post from August 2013, shot straight to the top of the list. I found these items interesting -- but no more…
  • Wild and crazy (not always in a good way) stuff

    8 Apr 2014 | 6:41 am
    It will surprise no one who often stops by this blog that I follow science news -- but that doesn't mean I get excited about every supposed finding. Perhaps that's because some reported results are made up. See, from Scientific American, "Publishers Withdraw More than 120 Gibberish Science and Engineering Papers." Because said papers were shown to be computer-generated nonsense!Bigger than worldsIt should likewise be no surprise that I follow reports about hacking -- but this headline (from the IEEE) blew me away: "Hacking the Van Allen Belts: Could we save satellites and astronauts by wiping…
  • A mission of (anti-)gravity

    1 Apr 2014 | 6:40 am
    More than sixty years after its first publication, Mission of Gravity by Hal Clement (the pen name of Henry Clement Stubbs) remains one of SF's premier examples of world-building. Clement, a chemist, gave much thought to the physics, chemistry, climates, and biology of the fictional world Mesklin.And a wondrous place Mesklin is, too. For valid -- if unusual -- reasons, its surface gravity varies from about three times Earth normal at the equator to hundreds of times Earth normal at the poles.A classicMission of Gravity is also a great adventure yarn.Last year's movie Gravity was very popular,…
  • Physics with a Bang

    25 Mar 2014 | 6:48 am
    Modern physics is on a roll. Less than two years ago: the discovery of the Higgs boson. Providing evidence long sought for the mechanism through which (some) particles exhibit the property known as mass, this discovery led to a Nobel prize the very next year. That must be in record time. National Ignition FacilityLast month: the quest for a sustainable fusion reaction reached an important -- if interim -- milestone: a fuel gain greater than one. Deep within the National Ignition Facility, tiny fusible pellets, blasted by 172 synchronized laser pulses, yielded more energy than had been input.
  • Sorry that I was so right

    18 Mar 2014 | 6:00 am
    The background of my 2012 novel Energized includes an energy supply shock triggered by Russian meddling in the Middle East. The crisis is further complicated by many energy-consuming countries having become dependent upon Russia for gas and oil. They are unwilling or unable to risk angering their supplier.Several critiques of the novel commented on an "obsolete" Cold War mentality. Post-Soviet Russia wouldn't act that way. Right?Wrong. And, to be honest, those comments continue to rankle.Latest flash point"Modern" Russia is a primary aider and abettor of the genocidal Assad regime in Syria.
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    The Days Are Just Packed

  • SFWA Pacific Northwest Reading Series: Seattle area 4/29, Portland 4/30

    15 Apr 2014 | 11:37 am
    This is just a reminder that the SFWA Pacific Northwest Reading Series will be holding its next events in two weeks.On Tuesday, April 29 in the Seattle area, we'll have local favorites Nancy Kress, Jack Skillingstad, and Leah Cutter plus special bonus reader Daryl Gregory. The University Bookstore will be on hand again selling books and all the authors will be available to sign.When: Tuesday, April 29, 2014, 7:00 PM - 8:30 PMWhere: Wilde Rover Irish Pub & Restaurant, 111 Central Way, Kirkland, WA 98033On Wednesday, April 30 in Portland, we'll have bestselling writer Mike Moscoe, along with…
  • My Norwescon schedule

    13 Apr 2014 | 12:09 pm
    Norwescon, Seattle's biggest SF con, is next weekend! I'll be there, and here's my program schedule: Reading: David D. LevineThu, Apr 17, 4:00 PM - 4:30 PM, Cascade 1 Arabella and the Marsman, a YA Regency Interplanetary Airship Adventure. Arabella is a Patrick O'Brian girl in a Jane Austen world -- born and raised on Mars, she was hauled back home by her mother, where she's stifled by England's gravity, climate, and attitudes toward women. When she learns that her evil cousin plans to kill her brother and inherit the family fortune, she joins the crew of an interplanetary clipper ship in…
  • Theatrical adaptation of "Tk'Tk'Tk" in Portland 4/24

    8 Apr 2014 | 8:54 am
    I'm very pleased to announce that my Hugo-winning short story "Tk'Tk'Tk" has been adapted into a short play, which will be presented as part of an evening of "Brave New Sci-Fi" at the Jack London Bar in Portland, Oregon on April 24! See for more details. The adaptation was written by playwright Matt Haynes, and the evening will also include "Why I Left Harry's All Night Hamburgers" by Lawrence Watt-Evans, "My Heart Is A Quadratic Equation" by Shane Halbach, "Deb & Joan" by Isaac Rathbone, and possibly more! The same company has previously adapted works by…
  • Reading in New York City at KGB 3/19/13

    14 Mar 2014 | 1:27 pm
    I will be reading at the fabulous Fantastic Fiction at KGB reading series in New York City next Wednesday, March 19! Come "up a steep and very narrow stairway" to see me and Ellen Kushner read from our work, mix and mingle with fans of fantastic fiction, and enjoy tasty beverages. The reading is at KGB Bar, 85 East 4th Street, and it's free! Come early to make sure you get a seat; doors open at 6:30 and the reading starts at 7pm. Hope to see you there!
  • SFWA Pacific Northwest Reading Series: Seattle area 4/29, Portland 4/30

    6 Mar 2014 | 10:46 am
    This is just a quick reminder that SFWA's Pacific Northwest Reading Series is having our next events in Seattle and Portland next month! On Tuesday, April 29 in the Seattle area, we'll have Nebula- and Hugo-winning writer Nancy Kress, accompanied by Jack Skillingstad and Leah Cutter. The University Bookstore will be on hand again selling books and all the authors will be available to sign.When: Tuesday, April 29, 2014, 7:00 PM - 8:30 PMWhere: Wilde Rover Irish Pub & Restaurant, 111 Central Way, Kirkland, WA 98033On Wednesday, April 30 in Portland, we'll have bestselling writer Mike Moscoe,…
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    Paul Levinson's Infinite Regress

  • Fargo Debuts with Two Psychos

    17 Apr 2014 | 1:59 pm
    Fargo debuted on FX this Tuesday, in the spot of the just-concluded next-to-last season of the excellent Justified.  I saw the 1996 movie, thought it was superb, but recall little other than the general setup.   So I approached the television series with not much in the way of specific expectations.   If the premiere is any indication, it looks like we're in for an experience even better than the movie - whose story has been changed at least somewhat for the television series.The story on Tuesday night was basically a tale of two psychos.  One, Lorne Malvo (perfectly…
  • The Following 2.13: The Downfall of Mike

    15 Apr 2014 | 2:00 pm
    Well, The Following 2.13 concluded on a resoundingly tragic note last night, as Mike pumps bullets into Lily, to the horror of Ryan and Max.Neither lifted a weapon to stop him.  They hoped their appeal to Mike's humanity might have stopped him, and it almost did.   Of course, it could be argued that what Mike did was in humanity's best interests, given Lily's propensity for dealing out death.   (I'm assuming here that she's indeed dead - you clearly never know for sure on The Following - and short of someone's head being blown clean off, you never know for sure on any…
  • Bones 9.21: Freezing and Thawing

    14 Apr 2014 | 11:52 pm
    A strong triple-threat Bones 9.21, with a great case, and two relationships pitched into interesting and important developments.The case begins with the mystery of how a dead body can be composed of pieces that apparently died at three different times.   The solution involves cryogenics - the freezing of bodies and brains for later revival, at a time when we can do that, and, in the case of the frozen brain, construct a body to go with it, too.  This is not science fiction -- not the freezing part, in any case, which has been occurring in labs around the world for years.  When…
  • Game of Thrones 4.2: Whodunnit?

    14 Apr 2014 | 11:36 am
    At last, a satisfying shocking killing in Game of Thrones 4.2 last night. After death coming down on Stark after Stark, and the villains suffering only a lost hand, we get to celebrate the poisoning of one of the most despicable characters in the series and indeed in all of television:  the just-married King Joffrey.   George R. R. Martin tweeted "You're welcome" after the show last night, and millions including me were thankful indeed that we won't have to see this sick vicious twit of a character again.But two intriguing questions ensue - actually one question, in two parts: What…
  • Mad Men 7.1: Vignettes and Playboy

    13 Apr 2014 | 11:28 pm
    Mad Men was back with its seventh season last night - it will be its last, though presented in  two seven-episode parts, over two years.   As was the case with much of season 6, this first episode of the final season offered a compelling series of interlocking vignettes, rather than a single overarching narrative. Indeed, the plot barely moved forward, making the episode more like a sequence of still life paintings, brilliantly rendered, hanging on diverse walls, than a story across time.Among the highlights of this new form of television story telling -Don's slowly deteriorating…
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    Holly Lisle: Official Author Homepage

  • “Write A Series” Students: What you’ll need BEFORE we start the Expansion

    15 Apr 2014 | 6:40 am
    Tweet I’m still putting together How To Write A Series Module 1: Creating Series Setup through Completion of Story One, but I solved the “how to present it” issue, and my goal getting this module up and making it available is next week. So let’s talk about prepping for the class. In the first four lessons of How To Write A Series, you get the detailed instructions on how to determine the sort of series you want to write, and how to put it together, how to make the beginnings compelling, the middles tight, and the endings moving and memorable.   THE EXPANSION IS…
  • Enter The Death Circus: Tales from THE LONGVIEW, Episode 1

    10 Apr 2014 | 10:51 am
    Tweet In Tales From The Longview, travel to the far reaches of Settled Space, where slavery is franchised, where people are required to volunteer for their own death sentences, and where powerful governments license out the right to kill to the highest bidders. Enter a crew of determined survivors from the worlds that tried to destroy them, guided by a mysterious recluse bent on turning the system against itself and freeing the worlds his spaceship encounters. Set in the Settled Space universe, this series fits between the end of WARPAINT and the beginning of THE WISHBONE CONSPIRACY. THE…
  • Edison and Me: How NOT to Do Something Difficult

    2 Apr 2014 | 1:54 pm
    Tweet I have the information for the first module of How To Write A Series more or less finished.  The story is done and beautifully edited. NOT by me. I’m fighting myself over the damn cover art. So far so good. And today I spent six hours trying to figure out how to bring all of this information—and there is a lot of it, including some new techniques I came up with to make this whole Writing A Series Without Having It Fall Apart On You Three Books Down The Line process simpler… When I hit the weird and wacky wall of SOFTWARE. Of All things. Started with Inspiration. Nope,…
  • Editor’s Revision DONE on LONGVIEW #1

    25 Mar 2014 | 12:24 pm
    Tweet Okay. Took a while because I’ve rewritten the same two chapters three times. But I got it. Had previously added two thousand words to the first revision, added three thousand more today. And FINALLY I love what I got. The story will go to my copyeditor tomorrow, I’ll figure out in the meantime what sort of cover I want for the thing. And meanwhile, I now have HTWAS Expansion Module 1 outlined. I’ll be working on that tomorrow. I’m tremendously excited, both about the story, and about the course.
  • LONGVIEW revision is done! Starting type-in.

    20 Mar 2014 | 9:12 am
    Tweet The series matrix worked well, I got an ending I’m much happier with, and revised all 60 pages yesterday and today. So now I’ll do type-in, and hand the whole thing off to Matt for content editing when it’s done. And then I’ll build out the rest of HTWAS Expansion Module 1. Rather than beta the story, I’m trying out a pro editor for this.  If it works out, I’ll  do the rest of my short fiction this way. Beta testing is way too useful for long fiction, though. So I’ll probably keep that step even if I decide to add this editor as my final…
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    Nathalie Mallet's Blog

  • Vegas, Baby, Vegas

    9 Apr 2014 | 4:07 am
                                    I'll be back in a week. :-)
  • Evolution of Music - Pentatonix

    26 Mar 2014 | 1:59 pm
    Enjoy! :)
  • Done...for now

    21 Mar 2014 | 7:08 am
    I’ve just finished the second draft of my new YA novel. I cut so much out of it that all I am left with is a bare bone skeleton. Ouch! It needs lots of work. :-/
  • Midway

    10 Mar 2014 | 9:47 am
    Update on draft two: I just reached the middle of the book. Well, it’s an approximate middle because I never really know how many pages a story will run until I finish it.  Still close enough. Usually I rejoice a little at this point. Not this time. That first haft still need so much work, it’s crazy. Right now I’m contemplating getting ride of chapter five completely. That’s the easiest change I have to do.  There a lot more. :-/ On the positive side, it’s a good story. So back to work I go.
  • Read an Ebook Week

    2 Mar 2014 | 9:48 am
    Smashwords Read an Ebook Week promotion is taking place March 2-8 2014. For one week only, thousands of Smashwords authors and publishers will provide readers deep discounts on ebooks, with coupon code levels for 25%-off, 50%-off, 75%-off and FREE.  I enrolled two of my books in the promotion, so this week Death in the TravelingCity is 50%-off and The Digging Crew is FREE! Go for it!
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    Nick Mamatas

  • In these dying days of LJ...

    17 Apr 2014 | 6:32 pm
    ...we need all the friends we can get. Have you friended me? Have I not friended you? Comment, and I likely will.
  • Norwescon

    17 Apr 2014 | 12:28 pm
    I'll be at Norwescon for work-related reasons, specifically because Toh EnJoe's wonderful book Self-Reference ENGINE is a nominee for the Philip K. Dick Award. Two panels on Saturday:Saturday noon-1pm - Cascade 5 - Japanese SF: Coming to AmericaAnime and manga have been a part of the American science fiction scene for a generation, but Japanese prose SF has only been making its presence known in the US for the past few years. The forthcoming feature film Edge of Tomorrow, starring Tom Cruise and based on Hiroshi Sakurazaka's All You Need is Kill, may be a game changer. Come hear what's up…
  • Some stuff

    15 Apr 2014 | 8:26 am
    What's up with Oliver? He's sitting up. See?And doing other developmental stuff; checking with his mother when a stranger appears, picking things up with his thumb and forefinger, lots of babbling, and all the like. Hair hasn't fallen out, eyes (gray) haven't changed color yet, so many old wives seem to be spreading information of dubious quality.Speaking of information of dubious quality that is not at all financial advice in any way, I've been noticing a lot of my writer contacts online sweating taxes. Most of them are Turbotaxheads, and they mostly seem to wait for everything—1099s, etc.
  • Thursday Quick Links

    10 Apr 2014 | 8:47 am
    All hail the Donetsk People’s Republic, which has no authority outside an 11-story Ukrainian government building that an unruly Russian-speaking, club-bearing crowd has occupied since Sunday. It also has no electricity: The authorities cut that off as soon as the People’s Republic declared its existence.SF Signal columnist John H. Stevens reads Love is the Law, and realizes that he is no longer a “fan” of Science Fiction (or SFF), but a literary wanderer roaming widely to find new moments of fantasy to savor and ponder. But I wasn’t just looking for “fantasy” the genre, either…
  • The Ultimate Warrior

    8 Apr 2014 | 9:51 pm
    The Ultimate Warrior frequently is announced as dead, frequently enough to get a tongue-in-cheek Dead Wrestler of the Week retrospective last week, when he was alive, but now it appears that he truly has died, just days after returning to television to accept a spot in WWE's Hall of Fame.So there will be a lot of revisionism going on, but do remember that not so many years ago WWE released a DVD called The Self Destruction of the Ultimate Warrior. (A new one was just released—a symbol of recent rapprochement.)Honestly, I wonder if this won't turn out to be a case of suicide.
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    Not A Blog

  • Aegon Is Coming...

    16 Apr 2014 | 9:49 am
     ... tomorrow morning. We're putting up a sample from THE WORLD OF ICE AND FIRE on my website, to join the samples from the next Wild Cards book (LOWBALL) and of course from WINDS OF WINTER (Mercy).  It's a short excerpt from the section of Aegon's Conquest, complete with some kickass art. And by the way, those of you who read only this Live Journal  -- and there are a lot of you -- should check out my actual website some time.  There's loads of interesting material there, from news stories to biography and bibliography and sections on my toy knights.
  • John Hodgman Returns...

    15 Apr 2014 | 11:57 am
     ... later that same night.As previously announced here (see below), John will be coming to the Jean Cocteau to perform  his stand-up show I STOLE YOUR DAD, "presenting new observations on subjects including how to dress like a young and relevant person, fax machines and other obsolete technology, marihuana and Downton Abbey, the state songs of Tennessee, the film criticism of Ayn Rand, and how to spend your time when the world did not end like you were certain it would on December 21st of last year."John's appearance is scheduled for 7:00 pm on Monday, June 2... but…
  • Season 4... in Spain

    14 Apr 2014 | 10:31 pm
    Canal +, which broadcasts A GAME OF THRONES in Spain, has done some interesting and unusual TV spots for season four.I thought you folks might like a look at them, even if (like me) you don't speak any Spanish.Pretty cool, I thought.
  • Hey, Cool

    14 Apr 2014 | 9:51 pm
    We finally have a "book trailer" for WILD CARDS.It's from Brazil, and it's in Portugese.Got to love those Marc Simonetti illustrations.
  • Dunk and Egg

    13 Apr 2014 | 2:37 pm
    An update on all things Dunk & Egg...To date I have published three novellas about them."The Hedge Knight" was published in Robert Silverberg's anthology LEGENDS, "The Sworn Sword" in its sequel, LEGENDS II.  The third novella, "The Mystery Knight," was part of WARRIORS, the crossgenre anthology I co-edited with Gardner Dozois.The first two novellas were subsequently adapted into graphic novels, with scripts by Ben Avery and artwork by Mike S. Miller and Mike Crowell.  The GNs have had a complicated publishing history.  Originally they were…
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    Welcome to the Maze

  • Mail going out Tuesday

    14 Apr 2014 | 8:05 am
    For those lucky few who participated in Friday's special, one day only offer, I will be mailing out books on Tuesday! Alas, I am chained to a desk all day, today, but tomorrow I can mail things out from the bookstore directly.Thanks, everyone, and I hope you enjoy MAZE!
  • One Day Only

    11 Apr 2014 | 4:48 am
    Today, Friday the 11th of April, until midnight, here us what I will do. I have a box of books in another room that is not getting any lighter. If you purchase a print edition of MAZE from Apex Publications, directly, at this link: then send me your e-mails receipt and address and I will send you a copy of any of my other titles, in print, until they are gone. I have some ebooks I can part with, as well, if the print books run out.One day only. Buy yourself something nice, get yourself something nice, as a bonus!1...2...3...GO
  • Reason to Garden: Food Security

    10 Apr 2014 | 9:16 am
    People who have been to my house know that 1) I have a lot of fruit trees, and 2) We really try to garden as much as possible.With the drought in California reaching Biblical proportions, I want to consider a moment why every single person with land or a sunny window should be doing this, too, right now, and expanding every season.In America, we will have plenty to eat. We are a rich nation, and even as other parts of the world fall into decline, our industries and agriculture will find a way to trundle on for another few decades without concern. However, there are serious concerns. GMO fears…
  • The Tower of Babel Crumbles As It Is Being Built

    7 Apr 2014 | 11:42 am
    Pondering aimlessly on a prior post I wrote dedicated to "southern" fiction, wherein I decide that dealing with the original sins of a place, time, or culture are central to the defining aspect of whether that work of fiction can be categorized as "being" a work definitive to the place, linked here, I would like to turn my eye to science fiction, which I have been writing too much of late. Fiction is defined by conflicts. Every work of fiction has one, of which I am aware. And, fiction, by its nature, is also a systemic redefinition of places known already. The signifiers in fiction, words,…
  • Things That Are Pushing Against My Head Right Now...

    2 Apr 2014 | 6:19 am
    Here are some songs, movies, books, all wandering in my head right now. I was singing this to myself all morning:  Last night, I was singing this to myself: I thought this movie was amazing, and it immediately leapt into my subconscious straight from the screen. There have been vivid dreams among pastel Bavarian mountains... I have been slowly rereading these stories as the larger books I work upon require rest. I am a huge Jernigan fan, and recommend his work as I am able. I am also reading this book, and it is thus far amazing. Just amazing. This magazine was recommended to me by Jeff…
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    Robin McKinley

  • Emma Tupper’s Diary

    17 Apr 2014 | 5:07 pm
        I told you it had been reissued:  Almost any of Peter’s books, if you mention it suddenly and catch me off guard I will probably say, Oh, that’s one of my favourites!  But in Emma Tupper’s case I’m telling the truth. Here’s a new review by its very own republisher: * I was already distressingly near to grown up by 1971 and wasn’t hanging out in kids’ book sections any…
  • Rant revisited

    16 Apr 2014 | 5:03 pm
      Didn’t get a lot of sleep last night—so what else is new—last night was however aggravated by shooting awake every time a hellcritter sighed or got up to scratch its bed into a more salubrious shape.  Siiiiiigh.  There have been no further outbreaks today . . . although the night is young* the current digestive miscreant, having eaten his dinner, looks pretty crashed out. . . . That sound you hear is me crossing my fingers till they squeak. More baby plants showed up in the post today and the Winter Table is full.  There hasn’t been a proper frost in town this month I think,…
  • Darkness

    15 Apr 2014 | 5:51 pm
      I had started a post about how much I loved gardens in the spring. And then Darkness came and stared at me meaningfully. Darkness has had diarrhoea—again—every day for the last four days.*  It had been the sudden mid-afternoon eruption schedule:  this afternoon’s eruption didn’t happen so I was stupid enough to think that was hopeful—since the hellhounds’ digestion has never made any sense, it’s always just living from one crap to the next.  And then tonight we moved into the multiple-geysering-across-Hampshire-at-the-hurtle stage. I’m not in a good mood.** *…
  • KES comments revisited

    13 Apr 2014 | 5:55 pm
      APOLOGIES.  I have a lovely guest blog series waiting in the wings . . . which I managed not to send to Blogmom to set up in hangable form.  ::Beats head against wall::  All right, it’s the day after KES:  let’s catch up on a few comments.  Whimper. TheWoobDog Okay, I would feel slightly abashed that my first question after this post has to do with Kes’s choice of sleepwear, but since it’s obviously an issue which intrudes quite frequently into her own thoughts I don’t feel too bad about asking: Can we expect Kes* to make it a priority to adopt sleeping…
  • KES, 126

    12 Apr 2014 | 3:56 pm
      ONE TWENTY SIX My feeling exactly.  But I couldn’t open my mouth to say so and I had a small timorous thought that this guy might not go for modern throwaway humor and silence, involuntary or not, might be my best choice. He turned on Murac like a firing squad and spat out some words like streaking bullets.  Or arrows, possibly, if I wanted to keep the contemporary feel.  I didn’t hear either azogging or giztimi but I didn’t think what I was hearing was the local version of ‘good job, well done’ either. “She holds Silverheart,” said Murac—slowly.  As if making sure…
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    Notes from the Labyrinth

  • promotional literature (The Goblin Emperor)

    16 Apr 2014 | 1:01 pm
    I will be at C2E2 on Saturday (April 26), doing a panel, All Things Fantastic, and an autographing session, both with Mary Robinette Kowal, C. Robert Cargill, Douglas Hulick, Steve, Bein, and Simon Green.Guest post for Daniel Libris on worldbuilding.Guest post for the Tor/Forge Blog on rules vs. guidelines.Guest post for Speculative Book Review about The Goblin Emperor and the Wars of the Roses.And guest post for No More Grumpy Bookseller about The Goblin Emperor and Elizabeth I.I also did a live interview with Dungeon Crawlers Radio and a guest post for SF Signal, but neither site will talk…
  • Happy Book Day!

    1 Apr 2014 | 10:43 am
    FIRST, Happy Book Day to Felix Gilman, whose book The Revolutions also comes out today. I don't know Mr. Gilman personally, but I admire his writing. And The Revolutions sounds awesome.SECOND, Happy Book Day to me! To celebrate, my invaluable webtamer has put up the map of the Ethuveraz on, there's also a FAQ. I'm sure that more questions will need to be added for The Goblin Emperor, but I haven't been asked them yet.FOURTH, John Scalzi graciously let me do a Big Idea post about fantasy and technology.FIFTH, for Forces of Geek, I did a post about inventing…
  • Goblin Links

    31 Mar 2014 | 2:04 pm
    So, things are gearing up for the official street date of The Goblin Emperor, which is tomorrow.I have a guest blog post at Tor-Dot-Com: The Emperor and the Scullery Boy; mrissa has a review of the book, and also, I did a Q&A; and there's a very in-depth review from the Jaded Consumer (beware spoilers).I am also doing a slew of guest posts for other blogs; I will provide links as they happen.And it seems like a good time to link to my Buy, Read, Talk post: what readers can do to help an author's career. (Again, that's not just my career, although that's obviously where my vested self-interest…
  • ATTENTION ZAFAR--sock elephant update

    31 Mar 2014 | 10:35 am
    Five of the six promised books are on their way to (or possibly have already arrived in) California, Oregon, Washington, and Estonia. (Also, the book from the Con or Bust auction went to Scotland. I love it when my books are world travelers!)Zafar, if you are reading this, I owe you a book! Please email me at semonette (at) gmail (dot) com so we can work out the details.

    25 Mar 2014 | 11:18 am
    First, THANK YOU SO MUCH TO EVERYONE who suggested a name. You are all awesome, and I love all your suggestions.In fact, not only was I not able to choose ONE correct name and ONE favorite, I couldn't even manage to choose TWO.THEREFORE.The sock elephant's name is Eleftheria Ada Lavanda Snodgrass, and her nickname is Elsu.Eleftheria Snodgrass was suggested by Zafar (who does not have an LJ account), and I combined it with Ada Lavanda from aerinha, because (a) I loved both names and (b) she just seems to need a ridiculously long dactylic name. On the other hand, you can't call somebody…
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    Day in the Life of an Idiot

  • Black Widow

    18 Apr 2014 | 5:56 am
    At the library yesterday, I gravitated toward my usual favorite section to shelve: teen (because they have all the manga and the comic books.) So, I came across this:Black Widow: The Name of the Rose (Margorie Liu/Daniel Acuña). According to the back cover copy, "collecting Black Widow 1-5, plus some material from Heroic Age #1."When I started it, I was a little afraid it was going to make me feel old again, like the new Hawkeye title did. The art is similar, but deeper:But, for some reason, I really enjoyed the heck out of this title. I think maybe it's partly the fact that Black Widow is…
  • More Incoherent Squee from Me

    16 Apr 2014 | 8:15 am
    Mason and I recorded our sixth MangaKast podcast, and it's up for your enjoyment. kind of wish I could be slightly more articulate about why Ao no Exorcist is so awesome. I'd love to drag more people into that fandom and there are only 56 chapters to-date, so it wouldn't be hard to catch up. In other news, there is a "wintery mix" falling on the ground right now. That's right: SNOW. I can hardly believe it. It's not right. At least my strawberries are still mostly covered by mulch, so I think they'll survive this. The question is:…
  • Keepin' on Keepin' on...

    15 Apr 2014 | 9:36 am
    First of all, I posted a new installment of my grand experiment up on WattPad. I might have been writing up to the very last minute, but that just means this newest installment of UnJust Cause is HOT off the press!You can read it here: UnJust Cause Part 4: Mochas and Motorcycles.In this installment, Alex discovers that demons have a weakness for mochas. Also, it seems that the sexy redhead werewolf biker, Mac, is stalking her!So, there's my sale's pitch. Go read!I have to say, it's very different, writing this way. I kind of think I might be meandering a bit, but that's alright. I mean, I…
  • Waiting on the Car

    11 Apr 2014 | 10:20 am
    It's pothole season here in Minnesota and our car has developed a very disturbing new rattle. I took in into the garage this morning and am now sitting at the library waiting to find out what might be wrong (and how much it might cost.)Sitting at the library is only a little awkward now that I work for the Ramsey County Libraries. I keep seeing people I trained with and there's a lot of "Oh, what are you...?" But, that's okay. I mean, I'm not going to stop using the library just because I work here, you know?I'm thinking, however, of packing up right now and walking up the street to Subway to…
  • Five is Live

    9 Apr 2014 | 8:12 am
    Mason and I recorded our fifth MangaKast. It's here: (Remember the go button is easy to miss.)This is another experiment that I could call failed, but I don't. I think the most ever hits our site got was 20 or so on the first day. We consistently get three now, I think (and I'm sure two of them are probably me.) But, this doesn't depress me in the least. Mason and I started this partly because I have podcast equipment around that was bought for the other failed podcast project and because, sometimes, he and I have really brilliant…
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    the essential kit

  • that heart-breaking moment in Winter Soldier

    18 Apr 2014 | 2:13 am
    I’m seeing a lot of mention going around about that heartbreaking moment in Winter Soldier, and everybody I’ve seen commenting on it says they thought they were the only one who was crushed when it turned out to be what it was instead of what it looked like. I want everybody to know that it wasn’t just you. It was all of us. It was certainly all of us women, anyway; I’m not sure I’ve seen any guys commenting on it. But every single woman I know seems to have been seized with an inutterable and terrible joy in that moment, a full-spirited OH MY GOD *YES*! that…
  • thinks to do

    16 Apr 2014 | 11:58 am
    make bread fill out paperwork do something at the big computer what was that desc the Regency crap what else FOLD LAUNDRY ANSWER @loncon3 EMAIL! find contract debate contract terms perhaps sign contract wut else write ch 10 of magic & manners gosh that should take me through tomorrow Share this:(x-posted from The Essential Kit)
  • lovely day

    16 Apr 2014 | 5:25 am
    The weather has taken a sudden turn for the better, causing me to accidentally work on my sunburn a little yesterday. Gonna have to find the sunblock today. (Or not, as it’s all foggy-ish now.) We spent over an hour at the park yesterday chasing a frisbee around, which was great fun. My nephew has this lightweight mostly-fabric frisbee that rises and drops much more dramatically than a plastic one, as it’s much more affected by the wind. After a while I got to where I could throw it to my sister and she could catch it almost every time, but the rest of us only managed to catch it…
  • more gardening

    13 Apr 2014 | 6:17 am
    We went forth and got some reinforced plastic container-gardening bags, and yesterday Young Indiana and I filled two of them with seed potatoes and compost. The plastic is strong enough that the bags will hold their shape even if violated, so I did two layers of potatoes by way of cutting holes around the middle of the bags. I’m given to understand that root vegetables will grow toward the light if it’s made available, so we’ll see if that works. At least I’ve tried. We’ve got carrots and lettuce and tomatoes to sow, too, although with the tomatoes I’ll…
  • thirty directions at once

    11 Apr 2014 | 2:41 am
    Despite it all meaning nothing, I may have accidentally-like written 2000 words on the PADYA last night (in 90 minutes, which is spectacularly fast for the first fly-by on a project). _And_ I included descriptions! :) It’s not the opening chapter (and here I sing Scrivener’s praises again, because it’s just a scene in a file that I can move to wherever it needs to go when I get that far), though I expect it to be early enough in the book to be useful for a proposal. I hope. Chapter 8 of MAGIC & MANNERS went up yesterday for the Patreon patrons, which means I *really*…
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    Rickety Contrivances of Doing Good

  • Journeys to Resurrection

    6 Apr 2014 | 2:59 pm
    I delivered this homily as a guest preacher at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd in Reno.  Lutheran homilies are somewhat longer than Episcopal ones, as you'll see; I recycled two previous sermons I'd given in my home parish.  The family story I tell is one nearly all of my friends already know (and one my mother gave me permission to tell).Here are the readings for Lent 5; both Episcopal and Lutheran churches use the Revised Common Lectionary.*“How could God let this happen?”We hear this question all the time: after shootings, after tragic car accidents and plane…
  • All Our Eyes

    16 Mar 2014 | 1:13 pm
    Here's today's homily:  not one of my best, I think, but, as Gary says, it's solid and gets the job done. Several people at church said they needed to hear this message today -- funny how that always happens -- and quite a few folks were very intrigued by the Kansas story.  So it's a good-enough homily, even if it's not a great one. And good-enough's very fitting for Lent, isn't it?The readings are Genesis 12:1-4a and John 3:1-17.*Our Scripture readings today begin with a long, arduous journey.  God tells Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your…
  • Eight Words

    23 Feb 2014 | 7:21 pm
    Here's today's homily, posted later than usual (and without links) because I'm buried under grading and have to get ready for classes tomorrow.  I may or may not put in links at some future date, but the stories and quotations I use here are easy to find via Google.I also couldn't find a good image for this post.  The Gospel is Matthew 5:38-48, the one about loving our enemies.*When I was a volunteer chaplain at the hospital, patients sometimes said, “I don’t think you want to talk to me.  I’m not Christian.” My response was always, “I’m trained to talk to…
  • Calling Names

    18 Jan 2014 | 7:32 pm
     Here is tomorrow's homily.  I'm not talking about MLK Jr. -- I just couldn't find a non-clunky way to work it in -- but certainly the story at the end deals with the themes of freedom and overcoming oppression.  (That story may need to come with a trigger warning.)  The readings are Isaiah 49:1-7 and John 1:29-42.*     Today’s readings are obsessed with names. “The Lord called me before I was born,” Isaiah says; “while I was in my mother’s womb he named me.”  In the Gospel, John calls Jesus “the Lamb of God,” “the one who…
  • Survival Stories

    7 Dec 2013 | 8:07 pm
    Here's tomorrow's homily; the Gospel is Matthew 3:1-12.  Advent's my least favorite liturgical season, and I've never found John the Baptist very appealing, so finding my way into the readings is always a challenge. Gary thinks this works.  I hope other people will, too.*Happy New Year! This is the second week of Advent, the beginning of the church year, and you know what that means. John the Baptist is back, chomping on locusts, howling about the end of the world as he exhorts people to save themselves through baptism and repentance. The Kingdom of God has come near, and the…
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    Old Enough to Know Better

  • Musashi Link

    10 Apr 2014 | 11:52 pm
    Oh, yeah, the link to the eBook version of The Musashi Flex is finally live, over there in the links list ...
  • Good-bye Mary Ann

    28 Mar 2014 | 12:58 pm
    My eleventh-grade English III teacher passed away this past week, while I was doing ukulele camp. The guy who maintains the connections to the class of '65 sent us a note, saying she was ill,  sent home from the hospital to hospice care, and before we could try to get into contact, she was gone. Only ten years older than my wife and I, who were both her students before we started dating.I didn't maintain a strong connection with her after high school, though I did send her copies of all my books when they hit the racks. My very first science fiction short story was an assignment for…
  • Uke Book Intro

    22 Mar 2014 | 10:17 am
    Dog Paddling the Third Wave:A Newbie’sUkulele AdventuresIntroduction:Behold the ukulele, that shrimp-sized guitar-wanna-be with only four strings, the my-dog-has-fleas plinkety-plinkety thing that–if you are of a certain age, might, when somebody mentions the sucker, immediately bring to mind the late Tiny Tim. If you are older, you might think instead of George Formby, or Arthur Godfrey. Younger, you might know Eddie Vedder or Jake Shimabukuro, or maybe for you, the uke is just another instrument in a pop group, since the uke has–at least for now–become cool…
  • Non-Fiction Book

    17 Mar 2014 | 5:44 pm
    Here's what I'm thinking. Just a rough on the cover, but you get the subject matter … In my copious spare time, of course ...
  • Turn the Page

    11 Mar 2014 | 10:44 am
    "Wimoweh"In October of 2002, we bought a camper. It was a Born Free 24'/Rear Bath, a small, but fairly high-end rig. There were several reasons we went for it. We had big German Shepherd Dogs who liked to bark at other dogs. We reasoned that if we had an RV, we could park it away from other folks and not worry about Cady and Scout carrying on like they did at the dog motels.My wife's job was most stressful, and the idea of just piling into the camper and leaving town for a few days was most attractive. We'd have a chance to be alone, with nothing we had to do, no yard work, no…
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  • Michael C Ruppert r.i.p. - Abby Martin's tearful tribute - fire your weapon

    18 Apr 2014 | 2:27 am
    RT's Abby Martin gives a (surprisingly) tearful tribute to independent investigator and government whistleblower Michael C Ruppert (April 13th suicide) on a recent Breaking The Set show."I regret not telling you just how much you were loved and needed by us," summarises Martin.Fire your weapon, was Mike's personal mantra, this means 'do what you can' to have THE TRUTH revealed to Humanity. End the silence of complicity, speak up for reality; end games.
  • Mike Philbin Facial Manipulation - ARTIFACE - new online art service

    17 Apr 2014 | 12:31 pm
    ARTIFACE ex1: Free Planet banner imageARTIFACE ex2: corporate cousinsARTIFACE ex3: Liberator (free planet #2 novel) cover image in the same way that I offered an online PALM READING service via my Oxford Cheiromancy post, I'm offering an online ARTIFACE service. Same setup as the palm reading service. I'll need about eight character shots of you. In day light, no flash. Preferably naked shoulders up to top of head. From same position, in same lighting. Against a neutral background, say a white wall or something. Don't move about too much, just EXPRESS YOUR INNER SELF to the…
  • the wonders of mole soil

    16 Apr 2014 | 5:55 am
    gardening? Yeah, every few years or so, I'll get this gardening kick going. I had an allotment on several occassions, never quite near enough to where I live. This year, I'm growing veggies in buckets and baskets. Potatoes, tomatoes, lettuce, carrots, onions etc. I needed some extra soil... I had this little bucket of potatoes that were coming through real nice, and I realised, "I'm gonna need a bigger bucket." So, I found one, outside a neighbour's house, and brought it back, with the permission of the neighbour. Repotted the potatoes inside the bigger bucket. Then I…
  • Wolverine vs Nightmare on Elm Street - no discernible difference - one's a cert 12

    15 Apr 2014 | 1:40 am
    notice the boiled fleshnotice the lethal handsure, I like my escapist surrealist horror films weird and hard. Lots of gore, lots of violent action, plenty of the in-out adult action - and by this I don't mean the man-sausage cherry-pie type in-out action, I mean Freddy Krueger with his boiled flesh and lethal hand in Nightmare on Elm Street ripping through the plump bodies of spoilt American teens for the sins of their fathers & mothers kinda in-out.  In fact, if I was watching WOLVERINE (cert 12) back in those halcyon days, I wouldn't have been surprised by…
  • Press Release - KUMIKO by Mike Philbin - third G3 Whistleblower novel

    14 Apr 2014 | 1:40 am
    not finished cover art Tandem(G3 whistleblower novel #1, out now) Watcher(G3 whistleblower novel #2, being written) Kumiko(G3 whistleblower novel #3, hm... there's no reason why not)   SELFIETERVIEW:What's this book about, Mike? Kumiko's a third G3-whistleblower novel that'll be all sorts of exciting and flavourful, and weird too. It'll tie all the G3-nonsense together, with any luck. Any chance of a sneak peek?I'm still working on Watcher (G3 #2) and Reaper (Free Planet #3), through 2014, but Kumiko (2015) will expand upon the spooky G3-group's…
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    Tiny Godzilla

  • With one flat foot on the devil's wing

    17 Apr 2014 | 1:05 pm
    On Tuesday, I ran out of my prescription allergy stuff - and was told that I couldn't get the refill until yesterday, which is typical. I don't know what weird, bad magic it is, but for some reason my helpful nose-spray-goo (Flonase) is always used up a few days before the insurance company says I'm allowed to have any more. Well, this time it ran out at exactly the wrong time because OH LOOK, SPRING.In short, my head pretty much exploded. I literally didn't sleep more than an hour straight all Tuesday night, and I was absolutely useless most of yesterday ... so, yeah. That's yesterday's…
  • I know it's true that visions are seldom all they seem

    15 Apr 2014 | 2:10 pm
    Signed, sealed, and mailed off the Amended Tax Return of the Damned this morning, so that's done. I hope. I don't mind paying taxes, to tell you the truth; I like having roads, fire fighters, cops, and so forth - and I am a grown-ass adult who understands that these things cost money. But I swear to God, there must be a better way to collect it.Like I've said before, if you want an exercise in absolute counter-intuitive insanity, try paying taxes like a self-employed creative professional for a year or two. It'll give you ulcers. And that's all I'll say about that.Maplecroft is still 4-1/2…
  • Time casts a spell on you, but you won't forget me

    14 Apr 2014 | 2:37 pm
    I took another weekend off. So sue me. I needed it, I tell you...though I might have hypothetically taken Friday off, as well. In my defense, I performed a lot more maintenance-style yardwork, and accomplished some boring-type shopping. (Target run for household necessities, etc.) Basically, it was a day of catching-up on regular-life things, rather than writing-life and/or writing-business things. Once in awhile, I need one of those.That said, Friday was a mixed bag. I was productive, yes - but I also got some paperwork in the mail that I passed along to our accountant...who informs me that…
  • Each gentle sunny spring when they came back again

    10 Apr 2014 | 1:02 pm
    Yesterday was kind of a wash, I admit. I didn't sleep well, due to a combination of a cranky little old lady cat wailing through the night - and my husband's early rising to go try out for jury duty, as mandated by Official Summons. I'm kind of a hot-house orchid when it comes to sleep. If I don't get 6-7 hours bare minimum, I'm worthless all damn day.Which is just a long way of saying that no, I didn't get any writing done.That said, I did manage to keep a hair appointment and get myself some lunch; and then, because I lacked the brain power for anything too "thinky," I took the edge trimmer…
  • The darkest need the slowest speed

    8 Apr 2014 | 3:47 pm
    Today was a day for errands and whatnot, including such thrilling activities as going to the post office and bank, and getting our annual termite inspection. No worries, we aced it. [:: gold star ::] I still managed to get some writing done, too - as previously vowed. So 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:…
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  • The Brick Moon/Another Brick in the Moon

    Adam Roberts
    12 Apr 2014 | 11:39 pm
    Lovely cover, there, from Gary Northfield. The book itself is coming soon: Jurassic London is delighted to announce The Brick Moon, a new edition of the classic tale from Edward Everett Hale. Hale’s prophetic novel, first published in 1869, is the first to imagine the launch of an artificial satellite – making it the perfect fictional pairing with Stars to Satellites and Longitude Punk’d, two new exhibitions at the Royal Observatory Greenwich. The new edition comes complete with “Another Brick in the Moon”, a sequel to Hale’s original tale, penned by award-winning science fiction…
  • Tolkien lecture, Pembroke Oxford May 2

    Adam Roberts
    11 Apr 2014 | 7:12 am
    More details here.
  • Edge Hill Robots

    Adam Roberts
    3 Apr 2014 | 3:01 am
    I'm very pleased that my short story collection Adam Robots has been long-listed for the Edge Hill Short Story prize, an award uniquely targeted at collections of original short fiction. Shortlist announced in May.
  • SFX reviews “Riddles of the Hobbit”

    Adam Roberts
    23 Nov 2013 | 3:49 am
    Five stars, no less!
  • Jack-din-Sticlă

    Adam Roberts
    13 Nov 2013 | 8:01 am
    The Trei website has just posted this rather handsome cover-art snap of their upcoming (or, wait: is it out now?) brand new Romanian translation of Jack Glass. Exciting! And the blurb! "Într-un viitor, în care deplasările prin sistemul solar sunt controlate de o oligarhie nemiloasă, Jack-din-Sticlă este căutat pentru activităţi teroriste. Jack crede că supravieţuirea lui este vitală pentru supravieţuirea speciei şi de aceea trebuie să comită mai multe crime… Cele trei părţi ale cărţii sunt tot atâtea intrigi SF poliţiste, străbătute de un fir comun. Prima se petrece…
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    Running Air

  • College Girl is Going to College

    26 Mar 2014 | 8:21 pm
    The last of the letters is in: seven acceptances, three rejections, three wait lists.  Very respectable (and the schools, including my alma mater, are terrific).  Now, celebratory pizza and a paper on Frankenstein.The kid just pushed the button.  She will be enrolling at New College of Florida.The uncertainty part is over. I breathe a sigh of relief.  
  • For Those Playing Along At Home

    23 Mar 2014 | 8:43 pm
    …it is college response season.  So far the tally is: one rejection (Macalester early decision); one wait list (Colorado College); six acceptances: Bard, Lewis and Clark, Reed, Manhattan Marymount, New College of Florida, and Eugene Lang College at the New School of New York.  Still waiting to hear from Grinnell, Oberlin, Connecticut College, Carleton, and Whitman.Whatever her terrors regarding Not Being Accepted Anywhere, I think that's been put to rest.  Financial aid offers trickle in (no one is giving her a full ride, but anything helps).Wow.  Incipient…
  • She Got Wings, Let Her Use 'Em

    14 Mar 2014 | 6:58 am
    One of the schools that has, so far, accepted Avocado (aka Becca) is New College of Florida.  I remember being very interested in the school when I was college-hunting, but my mother would have none of that.  And I'm happy with where I went but was still pleased when NCF showed up on the kid's endless list of Schools to Apply To.So they accepted her (with a box containing sunglasses, a t-shirt, and confetti) and invited her to New Admissions Day, which is tomorrow.  Of course, Sarasota (where NCF is located, on the site of the former estate of one of the Ringling Bros.)…
  • And This Weekend, FogCon

    8 Mar 2014 | 9:47 am
    Off to scenic Walnut Creek to FogCon. Alas, I was not able to be on the panel I really wanted to be on (which was last night, when I was, demonstrably, not there) but I'm on a panel on Sunday: Hiding in Plain Sight.  By all means, if you're in the neighborhood and want to say Hi, please do.  I'll be the one with the curly hair.
  • Potlatch

    23 Feb 2014 | 9:59 pm
    Well, that was fun.  Decided at almost the last moment to go down to San Jose for Potlatch.  Saw people.  Read the first chapter of The Book That Hijacked My Other Writing, to, I think, a receptive crowd.  Got word that Becca was accepted at New College in Sarasota, Florida (which was a school I wanted to apply to when I was in college…only my mother thought it was too hippie-dippie and weird), with money thrown in! And played Cards Against Humanity for four hours on Saturday night. I may be edging into the "I'm too old for this shit" demographic, but…
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    Benjamin Rosenbaum

  • 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.
  • Translation, Asymmetry, An Offer

    23 Feb 2014 | 3:04 am
    Translation asymmetry is a real injustice in literature: here's what I'm doing about it. You in?
  • Noah on "Start the Clock"

    21 Feb 2014 | 8:41 am
    Linear time: a game, or a religion? Noah on "Start the Clock"...
  • Aspiring Aliens

    13 Feb 2014 | 8:07 am
    "The Guy Who Worked for Money" will be reprinted in "How to Live on Other Planets". A lovely TOC...
  • Pretty

    13 Feb 2014 | 2:33 am
    A pretty thing.
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    Christopher Rowe

  • April update

    7 Apr 2014 | 7:57 am
    This is proving a busy month for me as I finish up my last full semester of graduate school (I'll be doing a brief residency in Lisbon in July as well to fulfill the final requirements). I defend my thesis novel on April 23rd, Shakespeare's 450th birthday, and I have a couple of short papers to write, but otherwise, come the 30th, I'm done. Upcoming travel includes WisCon over Memorial Day weekend. Greatly look forward to getting back there after we've not been able to attend for several years. I'll be back at the Sycamore Hill workshop in North Carolina in June, then the…
  • Welcome

    15 Jan 2014 | 6:09 pm
    This is the online home of Christopher Rowe, author of science fiction and fantasy stories, great cook, and raconteur. (Some of these things may be lies. Or none of them.) He is currently hard at work on Sarah Across America, an unusual fantasy novel about maps and megafauna, among sundry short stories. His first novel, Sandstorm, fulfilled his childhood dream of writing a D&D novel and was published by Wizards of the Coast. He has also published a couple of dozen stories, and been a finalist for the Hugo, Nebula, World Fantasy and Theodore Sturgeon Awards. He doesn't blog nearly…
  • A reading

    15 Jan 2014 | 6:00 pm
    This past Sunday, my peers in the Bluegrass Writers Workshop and I finished up our Winter Residency with a group reading. I thought I'd share the two pieces I read with all y'all. Both of them are from a pretty long time ago, but they were fun to read. First, my one and only published poem, which appeared in November 2001 in the ninth issue of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet. I wrote the original version of this found poem for a creative writing class under Frederick Smock at the University Louisville even longer ago than that. Before the war, even. OUR PRIZE PATROL WILL FIND…
  • Pens on Fire. ON FIRE!

    22 Nov 2013 | 9:16 am
    Hey all. Just a quick note about the event described on this flier. I'll be at the Woodford County Library tomorrow, Saturday, November 23rd, 2013, from 2 to 4 pm, discussing science fiction and fantasy, writing, and related things on a panel with a few of my colleagues. If y'all can make it, come on out!
  • (Nonphony) Preorder Mania!

    5 Aug 2013 | 7:18 am
    So, I think it's time for a little preorder contest for THE WOKEN GODS, which is out on September 3, less than a month! This is a contest where you win IF you preorder, basically. And I even made a video. If you are not the sort of person who delights in watching awkward author videos (or if you are!), the details are all below too. via Look, look! An awesome contest for Gwenda's new book!
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    Rudy's Blog

  • NYC Photos, April, 2014. Post #2. Plus Brainwash Reading

    16 Apr 2014 | 2:32 pm
    Last week I did a reading at this cool café / laundromat near 7th and Folsom St. in San Francisco. The Brainwash. And here’s a podcast of my reading, which was about twenty minutes long, including some brief Q&A. (Note that Feedburner only shows my most recent podcasts. For older audio files, see my archive on Gigadial, which runs back to 2005.) I read the ending of the new edition of my Kerouac-style scroll novel, All the Visions. In May I’ll be planning to run a Kickstarter for a Transreal Trilogy + All the Visions project. The trilogy will contain reprints of The Secret of Life,…
  • Trip to Manhattan, April 2014. Post #1.

    9 Apr 2014 | 11:35 am
    My wife Sylvia and I are back from a week in Manhattan. I saw my agent and some editors, bought books at the awesome Strand, saw Woody’s great new musical, “Bullets Over Broadway,” hit the museums, ate well, enjoyed the crowds—all the wonderful old and new buildings, all the amazing faces. I shot a bunch of photos, and I’ll be blogging them in the next few posts. This is in Battery Park, at the bottom of Manhattan where you get the ferry to Staten Island or to the Statue of Liberty. Street performers stand on little ladders, swathed in bronze-looking robes, with Statue of Liberty…
  • My Top Twelve Links

    29 Mar 2014 | 10:25 am
    The talented and wonderful people at my web hosting site,, have a Webalyzer service running that lets me look at the numbers of hits and visits that arrive at the various pages that I maintain on the web—mostly blog posts, but with a few book-title-specific pages as well. And today I thought I’d run a list of my top twelve most popular links, in descending order of popularity. During the month of March, 2014, so far, these twelve top links have garnered traffic ranging from 140 thousand visits for the top link down to a thousand visits for the twelfth link, with the…
  • Free BIG AHA Paperbacks at Scribd Reading

    24 Mar 2014 | 5:20 pm
    Added March 28, 2014: So I did my reading and Q&A session at Scribd yesterday. A good, responsive crowd. I made a podcast of the event. You can click on the icon below to access the podcast via my Feedburner podcast station. (Note that Feedburner only shows my most recent podcasts. For older audio files, see my archive on Gigadial, which runs back to 2005.) Here’s a zoom of that group shot. Original post below: A talk, reading, and Q&A about writing and about The Big Aha , a cyberdelic novel which Rudy funded with a Kickstarter campaign. “Rudy Rucker’s latest…
  • Living Petroglyphs?

    21 Mar 2014 | 3:41 pm
    I finished a new painting, “Hawaii,” (doing one last touch-up on March 14, 2014, which is the image shown here.) It has three big plants and three petroglyphs, although the guy on the right is perhaps morphing into something more. “Hawaii” oil on canvas, March, 2014, 40” x 30”. Click for a larger version of the painting. This painting has to do with an experience I had about seven years ago, and which I’m currently trying to fashion into an SF story. For the rest of this post, I’ll just edit some of the relevant passages from my 1997 journals. And, following my usual fashion,…
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    Kristine Kathryn Rusch

  • The Business Rusch: Generational Divide

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    16 Apr 2014 | 11:27 pm
    When I was taking classes in the craft of fiction, everyone—from established professional writers to English professors—recommended that a writer never ever say that a character looked like a famous actor. No “he resembled a young Orson Welles” or “she dressed like Claudette Colbert.” Not only was it lazy writing—the Gurus said—but, more importantly, there was no way for your reader to know exactly what you meant. You see, kids, back in the days when you walked uphill both ways in the snow to get to your typewriter, when manuscripts were laced with white-out, and copies were…
  • New Book! The Enemy Within

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    15 Apr 2014 | 3:29 pm
    I do love this new publishing world. In the past month, I’ve had three major book releases. You know about the first two–Street Justice, the newest Kris Nelscott novel in years, and the Fiction River Special Edition, Crime, which I edited. Add to those The Enemy Within. I’m so proud of this book. It started as a short story (“G-Men”) that got picked up by not one, but two year’s best volumes in not one, but two different genres (science fiction and mystery). The mystery pick-up, for The Best American Mysteries series, really pleased me because the…
  • Free Fiction Monday: Sob Sisters

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    14 Apr 2014 | 1:00 pm
    Madison, Wisconsin, 1972—When Detective Hank Kaplan calls Valentina Wilson to a crime scene, she wonders why. She soon finds more questions than answers in a secret room belonging to a wealthy female philanthropist, whose brutal murder the police hastily cover up. Val’s search for the truth will take her from the rape hotline she runs to the shocking realization that the woman’s murder anchors a long line of horrific events stretching back decades. Chosen as one of the best mystery short stories of 2013 by the readers of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, “Sob Sisters” continues the…
  • The Business Rusch: Stand Up For Yourself

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    9 Apr 2014 | 9:45 pm
    A few weeks ago, at our weekly professional writers lunch, a writer mentioned a private listserve he’s on with other writers, all of whom are traditionally published. According to him, that list has been discussing an abusive editor, one who is tearing apart her bestsellers, making them revise their books repeatedly while telling them that they don’t know how to write. I have been an editor off and on for a long time (with a healthy hiatus in the middle of my editing career), and I’ll be honest. As an editor and someone who has owned two publishing companies (and advised others), I…
  • Free Fiction Monday: Sinner-Saints

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    7 Apr 2014 | 1:03 pm
    Brash, outspoken, Lillian Hellman follows her own truth. Even when that truth costs her love. From the thirties, where she lived in sin with Dashiell Hammett, to the fifties, where her political aspirations lead her to the U.S. Senate, Hellman stayed true to her beliefs. But when the dark days of Communist blacklisting threaten everything Hellman has built, she must decide whether her truth will carry her, or if she will, as Hammett once warned, sell out her friends to save herself. In our world, Hellman found fame as a writer. In this alternate world, Hellman follows her politics to find a…
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  • 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…
  • Worldbuilders

    16 Dec 2013 | 9:54 am
    Hey, all. As the holiday season is here, I wanted to give a shout-out to Worldbuilders, Pat Rothfuss’s yearly, F&SF-themed charity drive. Pat puts a great deal of work into the charity, and I love how it brings the community together to do something great. The charity he supports (Heifer International) is quite worthy, and I’ve participated in one way or another every year I’ve been able.This year, I wanted to do something a little special. With the help of the Waygate Foundation, the group of Wheel of Time fans who seek to do charitable work, I have offered to Pat a special event for…
  • Words of Radiance is done! + Signing in Orem Saturday

    13 Dec 2013 | 11:02 am
    First off, keep in mind that the shipping deadline for signed books and other nifty things is tomorrow! Look here for more details. I'm also appearing at the Orem Library Holiday Author Extravaganza tomorrow morning; see my events calendar.For those who missed my posts on social media in the wee hours of the morning last week, I have finished the final draft of Words of Radiance, second volume in the Stormlight Archive. We turned the manuscript in to Tor, and they printed the thing off and showed how big it is in this blog post here. They also released one of the interludes on their site for…
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    Inhuman Swill

  • 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…
  • I'm reading this Thursday evening in Astoria, Queens

    15 Apr 2014 | 11:53 am
    I keep forgetting to mention this, but I'll be reading with the Boundless Tales reading series this coming Thursday evening in Queens. Boundless Tales features themed personal essays, the theme this month being "I Dominated/I Was Dominated."Thursday, April 17th, 7:30pmBoundless Tales@ Waltz-Astoria23-14 Ditmars Blvd.Astoria, Queens, NY 11105(N/Q train at Astoria-Ditmars Blvd) My fellow readers include Michelle Augello-Page, Sarah Bonifacio, Danny Herrera and Joan Willette. This is my first public reading since moving back to NYC from Chicago, so I hope you'll make the trek and check it…
  • January's CD mix of the month

    26 Feb 2014 | 6:42 am
    It may seem a tad late to be posting a mix for January, but I sort of got busy and failed to do so last month. Yes, the CD Mix of the Month Club reconvened a few weeks ago to throw a going-away party for our member Josh McCuen, who's off now on an epic New Zealand adventure. A couple of us made mixes. Most of us didn't. I guess now we're more like the Used to Make a CD Mix of the Month Club, which makes perfect sense now that there are easier ways to share music than burning data onto aluminum discs.Anyway, my contribution to January's shindig was called Difference Engines. This rather…
  • This Friday! Electric Velocipede Issue 27 Release Party & Memorial Service

    24 Feb 2014 | 6:27 am
    According to John Klima, he and I first met at the SFWA Authors & Editors Reception in 2001, perhaps introduced by Cory Doctorow. I have no memory of that. The first time I remember meeting John was at a party at a convention around that same time (I forget which one) where he was handing out free copies of his new zine, Electric Velocipede. I was dubious, eyeing the cheap, stapled covers, but everyone else around was acting like they'd just been given a gift of gold. Before I started reading that first issue, I had never given much thought to sending any of my stories to fanzine markets,…
  • Headers for multi-page poem manuscripts

    21 Feb 2014 | 6:42 am
    A reader writes to ask:How should we format a manuscript of multiple poems that each span more than a single page? Do we number our pages starting from 1 whenever we begin a new poem, or should we number our manuscript 1,2, 3... 10, etc. regardless of the poem? Also, what information should we include on each subsequent page, and is it necessary to number the first page of the manuscript at all? Am I right in assuming that a tonne of section breaks are in order?Some sites say to include your name and address (I've even seen e-mail) on every page of the manuscript, but that seems a bit…
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    Douglas Smith's blog

  • The Canadian SF & Fantasy Hall of Fame

    Douglas Smith
    14 Apr 2014 | 10:01 am
    I'm passing on this announcement from Clint Budd, Chair of the Canadian Science Fiction & Fantasy Association (CSFFA) Hall of Fame Jury, which should be of interest to any and all fans of SF&F, whether that be in literature, art, television, or film: Here's your chance to nominate the greatest Canadian SF Writers, Publishers, Editors, Artists, Graphic Novelists, Musicians/Filkers, Actors, Convention organizers, Fans, Scientists and Astronauts to the CSFFA Hall of Fame. You nominate them not as just for this year's novel or con-running or whatever but for their long-term contribution…
  • 2014 Aurora Award nomination period closed April 12

    Douglas Smith
    11 Apr 2014 | 7:14 pm
    Just a reminder that the nomination period for the 2014 Aurora Awards closes tomorrow, Saturday April 12 at midnight EDT. The Auroras are the official awards of the Canadian SF and Fantasy Association.  This year, my debut novel, The Wolf at the End of the World, is eligible under the "Best Novel — English" category. Your support by way of a nomination would be truly appreciated, especially this year for my first foray into the novel world. You can read the first four chapters of the book online here and also check out the brand new book trailer for The Wolf. Full details on how to…
  • Ad Astra convention: My schedule

    Douglas Smith
    30 Mar 2014 | 11:07 am
    I'll be at Ad Astra, the long-running Toronto SF&F convention, this coming weekend, April 4-6. This year, the con is at the Sheraton Parkway North hotel (600 Highway7 East, Richmond Hill, Ontario). More info on the Ad Astra site.  Here's my schedule for the weekend: Friday April 4: 8:30-9pm -- Reading (Oakridges room) 10-11pm -- Panel: Non-European Fantasy Worlds (Richmond C-D) 11pm-midnight -- Panel: Indigenous Futurism (Markham A) ​Saturday April 5: 2-4pm -- Author Signings (Richmond A) 9-10pm -- Panel: Veronica Mars movie (Markham A) Sunday April 6: 1-2pm -- SF Canada table…
  • "Dream Flight" published in The Dark Magazine

    Douglas Smith
    22 Mar 2014 | 10:39 am
    I wrote earlier about my sale in late 2013 of one of my early Heroka stories, "Dream Flight," to The Dark Magazine, a new dark fantasy online magazine. Issue #3 with "Dream Flight" came out in January, and here is a link to where you can read the story online.  The story was only the third one I ever wrote, so be gentle. It was also the third of my Heroka stories. "Dream Flight" is a sequel of sorts to the earlier "A Bird in the Hand," which appeared in Warrior Wisewoman 2 in 2010. But you don't need to have read "A Bird in the Hand" to enjoy "Dream Flight." Both of these stories appear in…
  • ChiZine reading series

    Douglas Smith
    22 Mar 2014 | 9:20 am
    I was one of three authors at the Toronto ChiZine reading series event at The Round in Kensington last week. Here's a pic of me reading from THE WOLF AT THE END OF THE WORLD on my Kobo. The other authors were Terri Favro (THE PROXY BRIDE) and Stan Rogal (OBSESSIONS), who did two wonderful readings. In between the readings, we were all entertained by two incredibly talented performers: Kari Maaren, the ChiSeries Toronto's resident ukelele comedienne (Album: BEOWULF PULLED MY ARM OFF) and Peter Chiykowski (co-creator of the Kickstarter darling, HALF-CAT). Thanks to Sandra Kasturi and Brett…
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    Rules for Anchorites

  • Captain America and Easter Snow Oh My

    Living for the Revel
    16 Apr 2014 | 8:57 am
    It is April 16th and there’s like 2 inches of new snow out there and I am NOT OVER IT OK. However, I am still alive, contrary to the outrageous claims made by the date on my last blog post. I’m even nominated for a Nebula for Six-Gun Snow White and going to be Guest of Honor at Minicon in Minneapolis this weekend. Which means no Easter Egg dying for me this year, but panels for everyone! Also I saw Captain America 2 last night and am mildly obsessed with reading the VERY FEW negative reviews because if it’s Marvel critics are now required to like it or face a personal visit…
  • Traditional Awards Eligibility Post

    Living for the Revel
    14 Jan 2014 | 8:14 pm
    Welcome to the yearly accounting of my published works, in handy list form for those who are inclined to nominate works for awards. (Also for those who don’t nominate, but would like links to things I’ve written!) Hugo nominations opened last week, and Nebula awards nominations are open until February (as are nominations for the Rhysling Award). If you’re a member of the World Fantasy convention, you can nominate works for the World Fantasy awards through May. Novels The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two (Feiwel and Friends) Collections The Melancholy of…
  • Let Wrist Articulation Be Forgot…

    Living for the Revel
    6 Jan 2014 | 11:08 am
    So! I had every intention of starting the year by revitalizing this blog, with many exciting posts about things both significant and insignificant. But instead, my body decided it wanted to celebrate the new year with a vicious flare-up of carpal tunnel. I am dictating this blog post, which is extra fun since I am historically unable to dictate so much as a post-it note with any felicity of language. SO FUN. I haven’t been able to use my hands for anything more strenuous than feeding myself for the better part of a fortnight. On the bright side, I have cool robotic arm-bracers that make…
  • An Audio Christmas Cracker

    Living for the Revel
    24 Dec 2013 | 8:43 am
    Good morning everyone! Whether today is a Holiday Eve for you or not, I hope it is a lovely day full of goodness. As a small gift sent out into the world, I present this audio Christmas Cracker (for my American brothers and sisters, a Christmas Cracker is like a little foil happybomb that goes BANG and then there’s a little present and a paper crown and a joke inside). It is a short story from my collection The Bread We Eat in Dreams, called Twenty Five Facts About Santa Claus, read wonderfully by Heath Miller, and given free to all this rollicking cold December. (Or rollicking hot,…
  • CMV’s AMA now live on Reddit!

    Living for the Revel
    30 Oct 2013 | 11:54 am
    We hope you’ve got questions, because CMV’s got time and space to answer them! Her AMA thread is now live on Reddit– you can head over there now to get your question in. CMV will be live from 3-5 PM EST answering them. Here’s the link: Catherynne M. Valente’s Ask Me Anything on Reddit. Go forth and query! Mirrored from Also appearing on @LJ and @DW. Read anywhere, comment anywhere.
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    Ecstatic Days

  • Southern Reach Annihilation Book Tour Schedule: LAT Festival of Books and More

    Jeff VanderMeer
    10 Apr 2014 | 1:56 pm
    Well, it’s been a ridiculously busy spring, with Annihilation taking off, including a featured review in Entertainment Weekly, and great press in GQ, the Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald,, and many more. I’ll share links in a separate blog post in a week or so. In the meantime: all three animated gifs for the Southern Reach series! The next leg of the tour is swiftly approaching, and here are all the details. Authority is out May 6 and Acceptance in early September. LOS ANGELES Sat. April 12 at 4:30pm, Los Angeles Times Festival of Books (USC Campus)–Panel…
  • Ann VanderMeer’s April Time Traveler’s Almanac Tour

    Jeff VanderMeer
    10 Apr 2014 | 11:02 am
    Hugo Award and World Fantasy Award winning editor Ann VanderMeer will be touring in support of her MASSIVE thousand-page time travel anthology, just featured on NPR with a review and interview on All Things Considered! Monday, April 21, 7:00 PM—Flyleaf Books (752 MLK Jr. Blvd, Chapel Hill, NC) Wednesday, April 23, 7:00 PM—Joseph-Beth Booksellers (161 Lexington Green Circle, #B1, Lexington, KY) Thursday, April 24, 7:00 PM—Malaprops (55 Haywood Street, Asheville, NC) Come out and learn more about time travel and great fiction! –Read the Preface at the Onion’s AV Club.
  • Southern Reach Text and Image Game from The Fourth Estate

    Jeff VanderMeer
    31 Mar 2014 | 4:39 pm
    The Fourth Estate, the UK publisher, for Annihilation and the other two Southern Reach novels has a great new interactive text and image site where you can sign up for an expedition into Area X, the site of the novels. Go check it out! Southern Reach Text and Image Game from The Fourth Estate originally appeared on Ecstatic Days on March 31, 2014.
  • Southern Reach Annihilation Book Tour Schedule for April and Beyond

    Jeff VanderMeer
    28 Mar 2014 | 9:10 am
    Well, it’s been a ridiculously busy spring, with Annihilation taking off, including a featured review in Entertainment Weekly, and great press in GQ, the Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald,, and many more. I’ll share links in a separate blog post on Monday. The next leg of the tour is swiftly approaching, and here are all the details. I hope to see some of you at these events, and as always check my facebook page for more event information. I’ll be back soon to do some real (and regular) blogging, I promise! TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA Sat. April 5 at 2pm, Barnes &…
  • Annihilation: Jeff VanderMeer New York City Tour–Three Nights of Music, Conversation, Readings

    Jeff VanderMeer
    17 Feb 2014 | 8:42 am
    I’ll be in New York City the week of February 24 for three events, two in Manhattan and one in Brooklyn. Please come out and help me celebrate the release of the book! The details are below. Hopefully for the McNally and Brooklyn events some of us can go out for drinks after. Ann will be with me for those events, too. Annihilation continues to do very well, with mentions on the front page of the New York Times (also discussed on Jezebel, LitReactor, and more), this podcast interview, and a long excerpt at io9. To name just a few, Annihilation has also been an Amazon best book…
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    Paperback Writer

  • Beautiful

    Lynn Viehl
    18 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Seeing how other artists express beauty forever fascinates me, and this incredibly detailed video does so with spectacular, unearthly visuals (includes background music, for those of you at work): The Moment of Beauty from Takayuki Sato on Vimeo.
  • Face Me Out, Please

    Lynn Viehl
    17 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    If you were a book, where would you be shelved in the library? Take this Dewey Decimal quiz and find out.My results:Yep, that makes all kinds of sense (when I visit the library I spend a lot of time browsing the 900's as it's my favorite nonfic section, so I'd be happy there as a book.) On what shelf did you end up? Post your results in comments.(Test link nicked from Gerard at The Presurfer)
  • Reject Sub Op

    Lynn Viehl
    16 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Harren Press has a very interesting open call for an upcoming antho: "We, at Harren Press, are hosting a REJECTED anthology! Any short story that you have written, submitted, and been rejected with; we are interested in seeing it and the rejection letter. We are accepting any genre, so feel free to submit anything you have. What we ARE looking for: Stories that have been polished by the writer, but for one reason or another were not accepted by the intended publisher. What we are NOT looking for: Stories that have obvious reasons for rejection. We do not want stories that are filled with…
  • Very Good Reading!

    Lynn Viehl
    15 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    There was another very strange thing I saw on the internet last week, but this deserves a post of its own, as I think it will interest one of my friends and indeed every author out there who actively agonizes over the reviews and ratings of their work on I took this screenshot of a page at Goodreads showing a sampling of the ratings given to three of my works:What I'd like you to note is the rating for Forget-Me-Knot, the listing indicated by the pink arrow. I scheduled this story to release last October as a freebie novella to promote my new series. To tell you the truth, I…
  • Huh Ten

    Lynn Viehl
    14 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Ten Amazing/Strange/Inspiring Things I Saw on the Internet Last Week#1: A man who spent $158K on plastic surgery in order to resemble a human Ken doll insults a woman who wears makeup and hair extensions in order to look like a human Barbie doll.Already I need an aspirin.#2: Bruce and Melanie's Steampunk Victorian HouseBruce and Melanie, adopt me, please. Or let me be your housekeeper. #3: "Don't break anyone's heart They only have one Break their bones they have 206"My next hobby: evil cross-stitch.#4: Google adds the temples of Angkor, Cambodia to StreetViewThis is one of the places in the…
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    Bluejo's Journal

  • papersky @ 2014-04-13T15:30:00

    Jo Walton
    13 Apr 2014 | 12:30 pm
    View Poll: Answer before googling
  • My Real Children Epic Signing Tour Dates

    Jo Walton
    9 Apr 2014 | 12:10 pm
    So this tour kept getting longer and more complicated, but I think this is final. If I am coming near you, come and hear me read from My Real Children, and let me know, maybe we can get together. Seeing friends along the way was the best part of the tour last time. (This is just the readings, without all the train times.)22nd May, 7pm, Towne Books, Philadelphia23-26th May, Balticon, Baltimore27th May, 7pm, The Word, Brooklyn28th May, 7pm, Wellesley Books, Boston29th May, afternoon, BEA, New York1st June, 3pm, Skokie Library, Chicago3rd June, 5pm, Uncle Hugos, Minneapolis7th June, 4pm,…
  • First two chapters of My Real Children on

    Jo Walton
    9 Apr 2014 | 9:52 am
    If you want to read the first two chapters of My Real Children in advance of the launch on May 20th, which is six weeks from now, they're live on now.The way the book works, there's the first chapter, then there are four chapters set in the pre-split universe and then from the end of chapter 5 and the split point it alternates between the character's two lives. So if two chapters looks a little odd, that's why.And probably tomorrow I'll be posting details about my forthcoming signing tour for this book.
  • Culture, or how I discovered Bach

    Jo Walton
    8 Apr 2014 | 11:57 am
    I think it was 1994, and I was twenty-nine. I was in a charity shop in Lancaster, one of the smaller ones, down at the bottom of Penny Street. carandol and I wanted some more music both of us could write to -- we were working on GURPS Celtic Myth. Z was a little kid. And it was the time when everybody was switching over from vinyl to CDs and getting rid of their vinyl. We still had a record player, and this was the beginning of me buying all the vinyl everyone else was upgrading from. I'd heard of Bach, of course I had. I'd heard Cassandra Mortmain in I Capture the Castle say that he was like…
  • Hades & Persephone on

    Jo Walton
    6 Apr 2014 | 8:33 am
    A poem, and for once you didn't see it here first, this is original over there. comment there, please, if you are moved to comment.I realized when I was looking at Bernini's Hades and Proserpina that I hate the canonical story of Hades and Persephone so much that I have written two different poems trying to make it into a different story. This one is about it as a long distance relationship.
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    Martha Wells

  • 17 Apr 2014 | 8:38 am

    17 Apr 2014 | 8:38 am
    My fun for yesterday was that I chipped a front tooth. I have no idea how, I didn't eat any hard candy or anything else that might have done it. The tooth just spontaneously ejected a chip. Couple of links:Out of Print: Library Fundraiser for P.S. 244I really like library or school-related fundraisers that involve buying books or equipment or donating to libraries, so if you know of any, feel free to point me to them.Book View Cafe: Bad Attention I guess doing something like this is funny/clever to people who have never actually received death threats or other threats of bodily harm through…
  • 16 Apr 2014 | 5:53 am

    16 Apr 2014 | 5:53 am
    Where it was this weekend (photo on Tumblr): of links:Murder is Everywhere: What Not to Say to a WriterIt is a bit of a peculiar occupation for those not involved in it to grasp, I admit, and I've often discovered that when people don't understand what you do, they are—unintentionally, I'm sure—incredibly rude about it. Now, don't get me wrong. These were otherwise terribly nice people, but after a while I started to play Writer's Insult Bingo, and very nearly scored a Full House.NYT: The Ballad of Geeshie and…
  • 8 Apr 2014 | 8:43 am

    8 Apr 2014 | 8:43 am
    Book recs:* Attack the Geek by Michael R. UnderwoodA side-quest novella in the bestselling Geekomancy urban fantasy series—when D&D-style adventures go from the tabletop to real life, look out!* The Churn an expanse novella by James S.A. Corey* Horizon by Jenn ReeseA fitting finale for a gripping futurist series whose four multifaceted heroes offer a strong anti-war, pro-diversity message. —Kirkus Reviews Links* Daily Dot: Every Review of Black Widow in Captain America is Wrong* Cynsations: Guest Post: Joseph Bruchac on "You Don't Look Indian."
  • Kobold Guide to Magic

    7 Apr 2014 | 6:09 am
    I have a non-fiction piece out today in The Kobold Guide to Magic. It's called "A Life Less Ordinary: The Environment, Magic Systems, and Non-Humans" and it's about world-building for non-human species with magic.Here's the description of the anthology: The Kobold Guide to Magic takes you behind the scenes to learn the secrets of designing and writing about magic from 20 top fantasy authors and game designers. Find out how to create more compelling, more interesting, and more playable magic at your table or in your stories—with the word from some of the most talented creators working today.
  • 4 Apr 2014 | 5:50 am

    4 Apr 2014 | 5:50 am
    We're waiting to go see Winter Soldier on Tuesday, so mostly what I'm doing this weekend is avoiding spoilers and trying to finish the last Raksura novella.links:* Whatever: The Big Idea article by Emily Jiang for her book Summoning the Phoenix.* Beth Cato talks about her upcoming book The Clockwork Dagger* N.K. Jemisin: Confirmation bias, epic fantasy, and you* SF Signal: Catherine Lundoff on LGBT Science Fiction and Fantasy in the 1980s* There's a new original Star Trek fan film series Star Trek Continues. I haven't tried it yet, though I have really enjoyed the ones here by Star Trek Phase…
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    Reality Skimming

  • Diff the Dragon – Part Thirty Two

    David Lott
    18 Apr 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 32 Alivda stared in wonder at Horth holding a sword. She could tell just by looking that when Horth held a sword it was not just a sword…
  • April 17, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote

    Lynda Williams
    17 Apr 2014 | 7:00 am
    April 17, 2014 - Okal Rel QuoteThe post April 17, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote appeared first on Reality Skimming.
  • April 16, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote

    Lynda Williams
    16 Apr 2014 | 7:00 am
    April 16, 2014 - Okal Rel QuoteThe post April 16, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote appeared first on Reality Skimming.
  • April 15, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote

    Lynda Williams
    15 Apr 2014 | 7:00 am
    April 15, 2014 - Okal Rel QuoteThe post April 15, 2014 – Okal Rel Quote appeared first on Reality Skimming.
  • Excerpt from Without Bloodshed Part 2

    David Lott
    15 Apr 2014 | 6:00 am
    Matthew Graybosch is a Romantic science fantasy novelist from New York who codes for a living. He’s also a gamer, a long-haired metalhead, and a geek who passes for normal by not talking about the nerdy stuff that excites him. He lives in central Pennsylvania with his wife, two cats, and a bicycle that nags him whenever he doesn’t meet his daily word count. He’s hard at work on the next Starbreaker novel. You can reach him by email or on Google+. His home page is at << Start at Beginning >> Chapter 11, "Three Adversaries Walk into a Bar"…
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    All quiet in France

  • New recipe: bulgur and chard gratin

    16 Apr 2014 | 8:01 am
    New recipe up at the blog: bulgur and chard gratin, aka veggie yumminess (aka “discovered what to do with chards today”) Cross-posted from Aliette de Bodard Leave a comment at original post, or comment here.
  • Quick update

    9 Apr 2014 | 2:40 am
    Am still around, just very very busy (especially with the snakelet progressing at exponential pace towards toddlerhood. Babies are scary sometimes. The good scary, but still). Still working on the novel that wouldn’t die. 73k words in, 18.5 chapters. 30 to 40k words to go, 6.5 chapters. I can do it. *deep breath* In the meantime, I’m over at SF Signal, revealing which SFF character I would like to share a drink with. Cross-posted from Aliette de Bodard Leave a comment at original post, or comment here.
  • Last day to nominate for the Hugos

    31 Mar 2014 | 7:40 am
    Today is the last day to nominate for the Hugo awards. I’ve updated my recs post here with two novellas and a short story. Wish I’d made more progress on the novels, but it’s been a slowgoing kind of year, reading wise (I think I’m possibly the only one who entetertained delusions that it was going to be a productive time). The nomination form is here (you’ll need your member number and PIN, which should have been emailed to you). I would urge you to nominate even if you feel you haven’t read enough last year: it’s a huge field, and even something…
  • New recipe: sweet potato cakes with salmon and cream sauce

    26 Mar 2014 | 9:00 am
    Posted a new recipe on the blog: sweet potato cakes with salmon and cream sauce. A bit time consuming, but well worth a try! See here for recipe. Cross-posted from Aliette de Bodard Leave a comment at original post, or comment here.
  • New recipe: wok-seared zucchini and carrots

    19 Mar 2014 | 4:27 am
    A new recipe, courtesy of “Aliette cooks fast in the evening because we don’t have much time to eat before the snakelet wakes up”. Click here for the recipe.  Cross-posted from Aliette de Bodard Leave a comment at original post, or comment here.
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    Mostly English

  • Eating Authors: M. K. Hutchins

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:31 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there.</p> As I type this, it’s early Sunday morning and birds are chirping outside my office window. The weather forecast is for a bright and sunny day with the warmest temperatures of the year. Yes, my friends, it seems that Spring has come to my little corner of existence and all is right with the world. And with that chipper opening, let me introduce you to this week’s guest here at EATING AUTHORS, M. K. Hutchins, whose debut novel Drift comes out tomorrow from the fine folks over at Tu Books. I confess,…
  • My Preliminary Schedule for Ravencon 2014

    4 Apr 2014 | 7:02 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there. In just a few weeks I’ll be driving down to Richmond, VA to participate in Ravencon. Here is my schedule as I currently know it to be: Friday, April 25th 5:00 p.m. | You’re Getting Sleepy: Lies and Truths about Hypnosis A short lecture about common misperceptions of hypnosis (as maintained by media and popular culture), what doesn’t work, and what does, and maybe even a brief demonstration. Just me and a room full of victims interested participants. Saturday, April 26th 5:00 p.m. | Secrets of Small…
  • Doctoral Day 2014

    2 Apr 2014 | 3:01 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there.</p> And lo, it is once again the 2nd of April, that special day when the world wakes up from the excesses of April Fools’ gags and gets back to work. Unless of course you’re me. For me, April 2nd, is a holiday. It’s the anniversary of the successful defense of my dissertation, or as I like to call it, Doctoral Day! Of course, there are many ways to observe this sacred holiday, but here are some suggestions to guide you: If you have a PhD (or other doctorate) dress comfortably, enjoy a special…
  • Eating Authors: Amelia Beamer

    31 Mar 2014 | 4:30 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there.</p> If you’re reading this on Monday morning (and let’s assume you are), I hope you remembered to cast your ballot for the Nebula Awards (assuming you’re a card-carrying member of SFWA) — and not just because I also hope you voted for my novella (which I do!), but because it’s important to point out what we liked, what entertained or inspired us. Another thing about this particular Monday also pertains to voting. The deadline for this year’s Hugo nominations closes tonight. And…
  • Nebula Voting / Hugo Nomination Deadline 2014 Edition

    27 Mar 2014 | 4:30 am
    Originally published at Lawrence M. Schoen. You can comment here or there. If you’re a card-carrying Active or Lifetime member of SFWA : The deadline for casting your vote for the Nebula Awards (and Norton and Bradbury Awards) is just days away. Similarly, if you : * have an attending or supporting LonCon 3 membership, and/or * had an attending or supporting LoneStar 3 membership, and/or * have an attending or supporting Sasquan membership: The deadline for submitting your Nomination Ballot for the Hugo Awards (and Campbell Award) is also about to land. Specifically, it’s next…
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    Princess Alethea Kontis

  • Princess Alethea Rants "Clever Gretel"

    14 Apr 2014 | 6:52 am
    Happy Monday -- a new fairy tale rant is live!Today, Princess Alethea rants about the Grimms' tale "Clever Gretel." Watch, enjoy, and share! xox
  • A Sad Day

    13 Apr 2014 | 7:28 am
    I am sad to report that after eight happy years, Candlewick is finally putting ALPHAOOPS: THE DAY Z WENT FIRST out of print in hardcover.There are only about 50 left in existence at the publisher -- if you've ever wanted one--for you or as a gift for a friend -- now's the time to pick one up. You guys get whatever you want, and then I'll buy the rest.I still hate that this is happening before AlphaOops: Christmas ever had a shot. There is a sadness in my heart, deep down, and I'm not sure it will ever go away.
  • DABWAHA Round Two!

    23 Mar 2014 | 12:06 pm
    VOTE FOR HERO, from now until midnight CST tonight!http://www.dabwaha.comphoto credit: EternaLegend via DeviantART
  • Help HERO Win Round 1 of the DABWAHA Tournament!

    21 Mar 2014 | 8:40 pm
    There are only 90 minutes left, and as of now, only six votes separate HERO and the competition. It's been neck and neck for almost 12 hours straight. GAH!!!Voting ends at 12am CST tonight. Please click on over and help HERO make it to the next round!
  • In Which Princess Alethea Inspires You

    28 Jan 2014 | 7:27 pm
    I was invited by the Magical Words folks to write four inspirational blog posts, each one posted on a Monday in the month of January.Missed any or all of them? Here are the links for your convenience. Enjoy!********************Jan 6th: The Danny Ocean Moment -- "Next time you’re stuck in a situation you can’t get out of, put on your Danny Ocean Hat."Jan 13th: The Fiction of a Writer's Life -- "Being a full time writer means that I don’t have business hours anymore. There is no longer a time I “normally” get up or go to bed. I have no sense of…
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    Over the Dither and Through the Words

  • OSC, Noah, and what does it mean to be a strong woman?

    Ami Chopine
    13 Apr 2014 | 6:47 pm
    Well, this is boring. I mostly agree with Uncle Orson about Noah. The added details are of little relevance to the story itself, which is one of moral dilemma. It illuminates what kind of man Noah probably was, what kind of an experience he would have had, and the failure he likely felt. And though I didn’t mention it, the whole killing babies thing felt a lot like Jacob and Isaac to me as well. The issue of “feminism” comes up in his review as well. “How many screenwriters would have dared to depict such a patriarchal character as Noah in Noah without giving us little…
  • Noah and the anti-feminist liberality

    Ami Chopine
    10 Apr 2014 | 8:53 pm
    Vladimir and I watched Noah a couple of weeks ago. We’d already wanted to watch it before, but then there was a bunch of excitement and so now we needed to see for ourselves. Vladimir hates the movie. He says it’s not worth your time. It’s not the best movie. The second half gets slow – slow enough that I was shaking my head and wondering, WHY? why are you doing that? I think slowness is a lot of what bothered Vlad. But in retrospect, it’s not a bad one either. It grew on me. And if you look at things from a liberal’s point of view, then you find that…
  • Holiday Merriment, Life Changes and don’t let guilt stop you

    Ami Chopine
    13 Feb 2014 | 10:04 pm
    The holidays are always a busy time of year, and often takes away from writing – especially if you’re in charge of the making merry. This holiday season ended with me getting a job at the very school I write from. The cons have been that I’m very busy. The pros are that, when I’m not busy there, I have my own desk tucked away in a corner, so I will be less distracted. But what this really all amounts to is that I haven’t written much in two months, so of course, I haven’t met my personal deadline of February. It’s frustrating, but not uncommon.  …
  • Planning your writing to be efficient when you write.

    Ami Chopine
    4 Dec 2013 | 9:52 am
    It’s quite by chance that I’m writing this today. I came to the school, where I usually write because’s it’s rather far from our house, and found that my power cord hadn’t made it into the bag. This rarely happens because the battery on my little laptop is almost worthless. I have probably 45 minutes. Or less, since it turns out that it had been left sleeping, rather than hibernating. On most other days, this would kick me right back home, where I probably wouldn’t write at all but would clean and this time of year, knit while listening to books. Knowing I…
  • The first Christmas songs

    Ami Chopine
    2 Dec 2013 | 1:17 pm
    Yesterday we started our advent calendar, which this year is a reading of scripture and a song. Last night it was Angels We Have Heard on High. It got me to thinking, what was the very first Christmas song? What is the oldest one we sing? There really just aren’t a lot of informational links that I’m finding, so except for linking to examples you can listen to, it’s all mostly here today. This is just the research of a couple of hours, sidetracked of course, as one gets. So, how far back does the singing of Christmas songs go? Some people reach all the way to the song the…
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  • 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...
  • Cara agar cepat hamil setelah kuret

    12 Apr 2014 | 10:04 am
    Hamil ini tidak semudah hal-hal yang Anda masukkan ke dalam Anda “untuk to-do-list”. Beberapa wanita bahkan mengalami kegagalan pertama kalinya dalam hidup mereka mencoba untuk menjadi hamil cepat. Namun, ada beberapa tips cepat hamil persiapan yang Anda dapat mencoba. Sekarang bahwa...
  • Wanita Dan Tips Belanja

    11 Apr 2014 | 9:02 pm
    Belanja adalah sesuatu yang kebanyakan wanita suka lakukan. Window merupakan masa. Wanita membutuhkan waktu untuk pergi dari toko ke toko untuk penelitian dan membandingkan harga toko. Kebanyakan wanita tidak perlu ahli tips berbelanja karena belanja ini sangat alami untuk mereka. Namun, ada...
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    David MackDavid Mack »

  • Hear me and others gab about The Fall

    David Mack
    4 Apr 2014 | 5:23 pm
    Last weekend, I took part in a roundtable discussion with fellow New York Times bestselling authors Dayton Ward, David R. George III, and James Swallow. We yakked with host Sina Alvarado of the Ten Forward podcast about our work on the recently published five-book Star Trek literary miniseries The Fall. We also spend more time [...]
  • All About Media Tie-in Writing

    David Mack
    31 Mar 2014 | 10:02 am
    On Wednesday, February 26, 2014, I was part of a panel discussion and Q&A about the art and business of writing media tie-in fiction. The panel was hosted by Housing Works Books, an all-donation, volunteer-staffed, nonprofit bookstore and café whose proceeds all go to fight homelessness and AIDS. Participating in the panel with me were [...]
  • You said it, Snoopy!

    David Mack
    17 Mar 2014 | 4:29 pm
    From the febrile imagination of my pal Dayton Ward, who clearly knows me all too well: (With apologies to the late, great Charles M. Schulz)  
  • Wanna cut the cord? Do the math first.

    David Mack
    14 Mar 2014 | 9:36 pm
    I had this great idea about a week ago: Tired of paying outrageous fees for cable television, I decided it was time to “cut the cord.” Of course, I still wanted to see all my favorite shows. And be able to record them. But I didn’t want to pay TiVo’s monthly fees — after all, [...]
  • Another feather in my cap

    David Mack
    1 Mar 2014 | 12:47 pm
    I belatedly noticed today that my most recent New York Times bestseller, Star Trek: The Fall, Book III – A Ceremony of Losses, is also a Locus Magazine #1 Bestseller, in the media-related fiction category, on its February 2014 list. That and $2.50 will get me a cup of coffee at the bodega of my [...]
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    SF Signal

  • MOVIE REVIEW: Transcendence (2014)

    18 Apr 2014 | 6:00 am
    REVIEW SUMMARY: Director Wally Pfister’s first feature film tries to tackle themes of transhumanism and the singularity, but gets knocked aside by the inelegant thriller plot tacked onto them. MY RATING: SYNOPSIS: When artificial intelligence research Will Caster faces death at the hands of anti-technology extremists, his wife attempts to save his life by scanning his brain into a computer, which sends him on a journey to transcend to a new state of being. MY REVIEW: PROS: A breathtaking vision of an uploaded mind entering cyberspace; intriguing moral questions raised by the actions of a…
  • INTERVIEW: Django Wexler Talks About Publishing, Perseverance, and His New Book, THE FORBIDDEN LIBRARY

    Kristin Centorcelli
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:29 pm
    Django Wexler graduated from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh with degrees in creative writing and computer science, and worked for the university in artificial intelligence research. Eventually he migrated to Microsoft in Seattle, where he now lives with two cats and a teetering mountain of books. When not planning Shadow Campaigns, he wrangles computers, paints tiny soldiers, and plays games of all sorts. Visit him online at Django was kind enough to answer a few of my question about his new book for young readers, THE FORBIDDEN LIBRARY! Kristin Centorcelli:…
  • [Trailer Park] Maleficent / The Signal / How to Train Your Dragon 2

    John DeNardo (SF Signal)
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:20 pm
    Her’s another crop of trailers for genre fans to get excited about. Or not. Maleficent Great-looking set pieces and fire-breathing dragons? I’m thinking fantasy fans may wanna see this one. Release: May 30, 2014 Maleficent explores the untold story of Disney’s most iconic villain from the classic Sleeping Beauty and the elements of her betrayal that ultimately turn her pure heart to stone. Driven by revenge and a fierce desire to protect the moors over which she presides, Maleficent cruelly places an irrevocable curse upon the human king’s newborn infant Aurora. As the…
  • Friday YouTube: How “Frozen” Should Have Ended

    John DeNardo (SF Signal)
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:15 pm
    The good folks taken on Disney’s Frozen… Related posts: Friday YouTube Bonus: How The Avengers Should Have Ended Friday YouTube Bonus! How Iron Man 3 Should Have Ended Friday YouTube: How ‘Superman’ Should Have Ended
  • WINNERS: Advance Reading Copy of GEMSIGNS by Stephanie Saulter

    John DeNardo (SF Signal)
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:07 pm
    The winners of our giveaway for Gemsigns by Stephanie Saulter has been chosen and notified. Congratulations to: David S. Eric D. Joel S. Karin W. Ron S. You will be receiving your prize soon! Thanks to everyone who entered. Related posts: GIVEAWAY REMINDER: Win an Advance Reading Copy of GEMSIGNS by Stephanie Saulter GIVEAWAY (US Only): Win an Advance Reading Copy of GEMSIGNS by Stephanie Saulter! U.S. Cover & Synopsis: GEMSIGNS by Stephanie Saulter
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    The World in the Satin Bag

  • Film Remakes and the Necessity for Critical Distance

    10 Apr 2014 | 6:30 pm
    Hollywood is hopelessly obsessed with remakes.  We all know this.  And if we don't, it's really not that difficult to figure out how obsessed Hollywood really is.  But I'll make it easy for you here:  here's a list of 57 remakes which were marked as "in development as of July 2013.  Some of those may have been dropped, but the fact of the matter is that there were 57 remakes in various stages of development last year.There's nothing inherently wrong with remakes, of course.  After all, many remakes tackles films that are now 30+ years old, which means the…
  • Fundraiser Updatery: 18 Days and Counting...

    10 Apr 2014 | 9:30 am
    There are 18 days left in my Worldcon fundraiser for The Skiffy and Fanty Show.  And I'm $1552 short.  That's a lot to make up in less than a month, but it's still doable.  $87 a day will do it!  But that means I really need everyone's help on this.  A *lot* of help.And on that subject, I want to thank all the folks who have helped out thus far:Fred KiescheScott PohlenzMatthew SheahanLouise Lowenspets (there are two dots on the last "o," but I can't figure out how to put it in there on my tablet -- sorry :( )Andrew LiptakStina LeichtMaureen Kincaid SpellerJohn…
  • Link of the Week: "Confirmation bias, epic fantasy, and you" by N.K. Jemisin

    5 Apr 2014 | 7:25 am
    N.K. Jemisin takes a stab at the now tiring debate over whether epic fantasy in faux-European settings can include women and people of color without rewriting (imaginary) history.  It's an interesting topic, as always, and, as always, Jemisin is brilliant in her response.Here's the comment I left:I don't have too much to add to this conversation, but I will say two things: 1) I was actually surprised that there were any people of color in Martin's world when I first started watching the show.  I'd become so used to epic fantasy featuring no people of color (or "evil" stand-ins…
  • Kim Stanley Robinson and Exposition (or, No More James Patterson, Please)

    4 Apr 2014 | 4:27 pm
    Just this past weekend, I saw Kim Stanley Robinson give a talk about narrative and time at the Marxist Reading Group Conference at the University of Florida.  During this talk, Robinson suggested, as I'm sure he has elsewhere, that science fiction has been the victim of casual writing instruction, which has mistakenly convinced us that exposition is terrible writing.  He argued that exposition is, in fact, the bedrock of sf, as it provides much of the formal variance necessary for the genre to thrive, particularly given the genre's history.  In a sense, what Robinson argues is…
  • Top 10 Blog Posts for March 2014

    2 Apr 2014 | 8:06 pm
    Here they are:Movie Review:  Riddick (2013)(or, I'm Going to Mega Rant Now)Great SF/F Books by Female Authors:  A Massive Twitter List! #sffbywomenOh, John Ring and Your Silly Fantasies About People (or, I Now Like Redshirts)Post-Post-Event Thoughts on LonCon3 and Jonathan RossTop 10 Overused Fantasy ClichesTop 10 Science Fiction and Fantasy Anime MoviesTop 10 Science Fiction Movies Since 2010 (Thus Far)Movie Review Rant:  Catching Fire (2013)2014 Hugo Nominee Ballot:  Best Novel7 SF/F Books by Female Authors to Pick Up on International Women's DayAnything you missed?
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    UFO Blogger : Uncover The UFO Truth

  • NASA Discovers Earth-sized Planet That May Sustain Life

    17 Apr 2014 | 11:21 pm
    Astronomers have discovered what they say is the most Earth-like planet yet detected — a distant, rocky world that's similar in size to our own and exists in the Goldilocks zone where it's not too hot and not too cold for life.The find, announced Thursday, excited planet hunters who have been scouring the Milky Way galaxy for years for potentially habitable places outside our solar system."This is the best case for a habitable planet yet found. The results are absolutely rock solid," University of California, Berkeley astronomer Geoff Marcy, who had no role in the discovery, said in an…
  • Netherlands UFO : Daytime UFO Sighting Filmed Over Maassluis

    16 Apr 2014 | 9:25 am
    Down below UFO was filmed over Maassluis, Netherlands on 12th April, 2014. Maassluis is a town in the western Netherlands, in the province of South Holland.
  • Ancient Aliens - Aliens and Stargates : Season 6 Episode 11

    14 Apr 2014 | 7:05 am
    Ancient legends describe sacred gateways that allowed instant transportation beyond space and time to the land of the gods.Are such interstellar passages merely myths, or did they really exist in the ancient world?
  • Adelaide Is Being Visited By UFOs : Australian Woman

    13 Apr 2014 | 11:39 am
    A woman claims she has proof that Adelaide is being visited by UFOs, and she has even made her home videos into a documentary. 
  • 'Cherry Tree From Space' Mystery Baffles Japan

    13 Apr 2014 | 8:56 am
    A cosmic mystery is uniting monks and scientists in Japan after a cherry tree grown from a seed that orbited the Earth for eight months bloomed years earlier than expected -- and with very surprising flowers.The four-year-old sapling -- grown from a cherry stone that spent time aboard the International Space Station (ISS) -- burst into blossom on April 1, possibly a full six years ahead of Mother Nature's normal schedule.Its early blooming baffled Buddhist brothers at the ancient temple in central Japan where the tree is growing."We are amazed to see how fast it has grown," Masahiro Kajita,…
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    Risingshadow - Science Fiction & Fantasy

  • A review of The Collected Fantasies of Clark Ashton Smith: Volumes 1-5

    11 Apr 2014 | 2:09 am
    The Collected Fantasies of Clark Ashton Smith: Volumes 1-5 were published by Night Shade Books during 2007-2010. These books were edited by Scott Connors and Ron Hilger, and cover images were painted by Jason Van Hollander. Clark Ashton Smith was an American poet, sculptor, painter and author of fantasy, horror and science fiction short stories. He was a member of the Lovecraft circle, and Smith's literary friendship with H. P. Lovecraft lasted from 1922 until Lovecraft's death in 1937. His work is marked chiefly by an extraordinarily wide and ornate vocabulary, a cosmic perspective and a…
  • An interview with Tim Lebbon

    10 Apr 2014 | 8:14 am
    Tim Lebbon is a horror and dark fantasy writer, and a judge at the 2005 World Fantasy Convention. Tim Lebbon was born in London. His short story "Reconstructing Amy" won the Bram Stoker Award for Short Fiction in 2001 and his novel Dusk won the 2007 August Derleth Award from the British Fantasy Society for best novel of the year. His novelization of the movie 30 Days of Night became a New York Times bestseller and won a Scribe Award in 2008. Tim lived in Devon until he was eight and then in Newport until the age of 26. He now lives in Goytre, Monmouthshire with his wife and two children.
  • GIVEAWAY: Alchemystic by Anton Strout

    8 Apr 2014 | 8:04 am
    This giveaway is limited to North America and UK. Only readers who live in North America and UK can participate in this giveaway. You have a chance to win a paperback copy of Anton Strout's Alchemystic. Alchemystic is the first part of The Spellmason Chronicles. If you want to participate in this giveaway, all you have to do is send a message to this e-mail address with your name and full mailing address: The lucky winner will be chosen randomly among all the participants. This giveaway ends at April 27th, 2014. The strongest bonds are set in stone... First in…
  • A review of Justyna Plichta-Jendzio's Cursed Children of Naor

    6 Apr 2014 | 5:11 am
    Justyna Plichta-Jendzio's Cursed Children of Naor was published in April 2014. Information about Justyna Plichta-Jendzio: Justyna Plichta-Jendzio was born in Koszalin (Poland) in 1974, and still resides near there. Married for sixteen years, she is the mother of one son and the happy owner of two spoiled cats. Justyna was lucky to live at the crossroads of two ages, communism and capitalism. When she was fifteen, communism fell in Poland. That time allowed her to see different reality, incomprehensible for future generations. It was also the chance to touch the past and have a glimpse at the…
  • A review of Seth Skorkowsky's Dämoren

    5 Apr 2014 | 4:52 am
    Seth Skorkowsky's Dämoren will be published by Ragnarok Publications in mid-April 2014. Information about Seth Skorkowsky: Seth Skorkowsky was born in Texas in 1978. He currently lives in Denton, Texas, with his wife, and works for the University of North Texas. His short story "The Mist of Lichthafen" was nominated for a British Fantasy Award (long list) in 2009. Dämoren is Seth's debut novel. He recently signed a two-book deal with Rogue Blades Entertainment for his "Black Raven" sword-and-sorcery collection. When not writing, Seth enjoys travel, shooting, and tabletop gaming. Click here…
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    On Starships and Dragonwings

  • Sci-fi and Fantasy Friday {SF/F Reviews and Giveaways}

    18 Apr 2014 | 4:06 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! Woot, it’s Sci-fi and Fantasy Friday time :D. Reminder: Use one of the genre labels in your link titles for easier searching and don’t link up posts that have been linked in previous weeks please! (Note for…
  • 8 Ways in Which Book Blogging is like Grad School

    17 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    8 Ways in Which Book Blogging is like Grad School Since the end of the semester is fast approaching and this month has been crazy, I’ve been thinking a lot about grad school and less about interesting book discussion topics ;-). My second year of graduate school is also quickly coming to a close (plus or minus a summer, pfft), so I feel like I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting. I won’t lie: this semester has had some low points for me. For a bit I was seriously trying to figure out if grad school was the right choice and stressing a rather unhealthy amount. However, I…
  • The Forbidden Library by Django Wexler ARC {4 Stars}

    16 Apr 2014 | 4:40 am
    The Forbidden Library by Django Wexler is a middle-grade story about a girl named Alice who stumbles into a world where reading books literally takes her to new worlds. Unfortunately, those worlds seem to frequently be filled with deadly beasts and the real world with ancient and heartless Readers doesn’t seem all that much better. The Forbidden Library pulled me in the second I saw the first illustration and I can’t wait for the sequel! The ARC I read didn’t actually have all the illustrations either, so I’m planning on buying the finished copy just so that I can go…
  • The Ring and the Crown by Melissa de la Cruz ARC {4 Stars}

    14 Apr 2014 | 4:23 am
    The Ring and the Crown by Melissa de la Cruz tells three love stories set in a world where Arthurian magic and legends are very much still true and alive at the turn of the 20th century, where a princess doesn’t want to be the queen and a young witch would happily take her place. The setting of The Ring and the Crown is deliciously fresh with elements of steampunk (alternative historical setting), fantasy (magic!), and romance (the feels!!). While I’m not actually much of a romance person  myself, the characters in The Ring and the Crown won me over easily and I found myself very…
  • Stolen Songbird by Danielle Jensen ARC {4 Stars}

    13 Apr 2014 | 4:35 am
    Stolen Songbird by Danielle Jensen starts with a kidnapping, adds in a pinch of French-based fantasy, and proceeds to sweep you off your feet with a painfully beautiful romance. There is a reason everyone is loving Stolen Songbird so much and it really comes down to how gosh-darn readable it is! I wasn’t planning on finishing it and then all of a sudden it was 1 AM and I was done with the book; how did that happen?? Note: I received an ARC of Stolen Songbird from the publisher for an honest review. Some things may have changed in the final version. Stolen Songbird by Danielle Jensen…
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    ATG Reviews

  • Tomb Raider Issue #2: The Four Guardians: Over the Edge!

    The World Weary
    17 Apr 2014 | 1:31 pm
     Jumping the SharkThis article features spoilers for Tomb Raider: Season of the Witch.After the first issue of this new Tomb Raider comic series, I felt pretty apprehensive about Lara’s future adventures. For the most part the comic was pretty uneven and featured some horribly weak characterization, as well as the dreaded “Horror Mouth”. The conclusion of the issue gave me quite a shock though, and for that reason alone, I held out hope that this new issue would really kick off the series. However, like the children say, “You can’t always get what you…
  • Game of Thrones Season 4 – Episode 402 “The Lion and the Rose”

    17 Apr 2014 | 10:00 am
    A Look At Internal Power(This article will contain spoilers from Game of Thrones Season 4 Episode 2)One of the dominant themes of Game of Thrones returned in The Lion and the Rose – the dangers of power.  This theme once again takes over an entire episode of the show before being capped off by one of the series’ longest awaited moments: the death of King Joffrey.  The ending is an exclamation point and illustrates how the dangers of power are not always external.Internal Threats To PowerJoffrey’s most dangerous external threats to his reign have been defeated thoroughly. …
  • Final Trailer: X-Men: Days of Future Past

    16 Apr 2014 | 8:09 pm
    X-Men:Days of Future Past Trailer 3The final trailer for X-Men:Days of Future Past was just released.  This trailer focuses heavily on Wolverine and Charles Xavier.  There are plenty of new shots of the sentinels and it introduces an interesting plot point: the sentinels target everyone, not just mutants. Here’s to hoping the huge cast doesn’t make the movie feel to crowded.X-Men: Days of Future Past comes to theaters May 23rd, 2014.The post Final Trailer: X-Men: Days of Future Past appeared first on ATG Reviews.
  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy Book Review

    14 Apr 2014 | 10:00 am
    Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy Trilogy Book OneHitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy has had a remarkable impact on pop culture since its release in 1979.  Reading this book for the first time gave me plenty of those … “so that’s where that came from” types of moments.While Douglass Adams’ book is enjoyable, and it certainly has its funny moments, I didn’t completely fall in love with it.  This is one of those books that makes a safe bet for a grab bag at an office Christmas party.  No one could really hate it.  By that same token though,…
  • Oculus Film Review

    The World Weary
    11 Apr 2014 | 3:38 pm
     Do You See What I See? Horror movies typically have the craziest premise. Take The Exorcist, a story of a young girl who is supposedly possessed by the big bad of the Christian religion and the deeply flawed people that must save her soul. Another good one is The Woman. A seemingly wholesome family in the American countryside adopts a feral woman in an attempt to bring her into society. Totally fantastic? Absolutely. Yet, you know a horror film is good if it can make these kind of insane ideas seem plausible enough to be frightening. Leading up to Oculus’ premiere, I…
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    EFB Blog

  • Brian McClellan Giveaway Contest

    Zaynab Russell
    17 Apr 2014 | 1:23 pm
    We’ve just heard the news and want to let our readers know that Brian McClellan is giving away a signed copy of The Crimson Campaign! Pretty exciting huh? If you’ve […]
  • Agents of Shield – Providence Recap

    16 Apr 2014 | 11:03 am
    In a world where the bad guys usually easily identifiable because of their skinless red skulls and questionable sartorial or tonsorial tastes, this weeks episode proved that beauty is indeed […]
  • Mother Knows Best in forthright episode of Grimm-S3E18

    13 Apr 2014 | 6:39 pm
    If this episode were barbecue, I’d say it tastes so good, it make you wanna slap yo Mama! In fact this episode was all about Mommas. New Mom Adalind, naive, […]
  • This week’s The 100 – Anything that can go wrong will go wrong

    10 Apr 2014 | 12:35 pm
    The writers titled this episode “Murphy’s Law”, but after watching it I came to the conclusion it should be entitled Murphy’s LAWS, because there are actually SEVERAL, and ALL of […]
  • Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D S1E17 Recap

    9 Apr 2014 | 10:49 am
    To everything…., there is a season…, and a time to every purpose under Heaven. Whether the Byrds song or the Ecclesiastes Bible verse was the “Turn, Turn, Turn” to which […]
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