I’ll be teaching a workshop on characterization at the Connecticut Authors and Publisher’s Association conference on May 9th. Registration is here.
Official publication date for An Apprentice to Elves:13 October 2015.
I saw grass today. And took the dog for a walk without my coat.
Now I have to pack for Tucson, Wisconsin, Minneapolis, and Illinois. So, yeah. Layers.
Pewter scraped across the black wave-caps of the Atlantic on the morning Carl Hughes learned how his lover had died.
"The universe will always need plumbers," Henry said, up to her armpit in the toilet. "At least until the Big Rip. Or the Rapture, whichever happens first."
A Time to Reap:
I paused in the wings stage left, in air thick with the smell of dust, imagining the applause.
On Safari in R'lyeh and Carcosa with Gun and Camera:
"We wouldn’t be having this conversation if you'd flunked Algebra, Griswold," Roberts said, racking another shell into his hunting rifle and peering over our flimsy barricade to see if the monstrous creatures beyond were preparing for another assault.
You'd think I'd have gotten out of the adventuring business, is all.
[No first line yet.]
The Stone in the Skull :
The mountain wore a mirrored mask.
Johnny Backus was a daywalker. Johnny Backus was a vampire. Johnny Backus was a friend of mine.
I loved you not.
There are no unremarkable worlds.
As the innate perversity of the universe would have it, Officer Jericho was up to her elbows in the guts of a roasted pumpkin as big as her chest when her pager shrilled.
Patience and Fortitude
Nothing made Matthew hate himself more than waiting for the elevator.
Give us this day our daily Giant Ridiculous Dog.
4280 words today, to finish a draft of "En Libres."
An epic fantasy short story revolving around the protagonists's desire to finish their dissertations and collect their Ph.Ds, starring a postgrad centaur alchemist and a postgrad botanical thaumaturge.
Now I get Thai food, as my reward for virtue. And I get to goof off tonight.
I've already written six pieces of short fiction in 2015, which is as many as I managed in all of 2014.
Maybe something came unstuck?
Also, I'm being funny this year.
This dog is inverted.
My Tucson Festival of Books schedule!
10-11am Panel: the Next Big Thing
2:30-3:30pm Panel: Revenge of the Flying Car
4-5pm Panel: Aim to Misbehave
I have the post-Boskone crud, just like everybody else. But I also managed to get my taxes done, buy a new car (It's my first actual bourgoisie car with a car payment in my entire lifetime: it's a Subaru Crosstrek and I get to pick it up tomorrow), and do a whole bunch of adulting, such as the annual over-forty irradiation and answering some interview questions and getting a whole bunch of stuff set to mail.
INBOX ZERO LIKE A MOTHERFUCKING SORCERER.
Now I have to fold the laundry I've been ignoring for three days.
The Author on the Flying Trapeze
Friday 16:00 - 16:50, Burroughs (Westin)
Research tips for fainthearted and fearless writers from panelists who've tried falconry, caving, rock climbing, and flying trapeze, cooked space food, been tattooed, and gone behind-the-scenes at Cirque du Soleil for their novels. They'll share stories and research strategies, including advice for introverts about interviewing experts. How do you handle the ethics and logistics of experiential research?
E. C. Ambrose (M), Vincent O'Neil, Jill Shultz, Allen M. Steele, Elizabeth Bear
Dated Science Fiction
Friday 21:00 - 21:50, Harbor II (Westin)
With the rapid advancement of science, the science within science fiction can get dated quickly. What SF works use science that has passed its expiration date, or at least reads as irretrievably retro? What books have stood the test of time, science-wise? How did they do that?
David G. Hartwell (M), Elizabeth Bear, Felicitas Ivey, Steven Sawicki, Michael Swanwick, Alexander Jablokov
Autographing: Elizabeth Bear. Susan Jane Bigelow, James Cambias, Andrea Hairston
Saturday 11:00 - 11:50, Galleria-Autographing (Westin)
Elizabeth Bear, Susan Jane Bigelow, James Cambias, Andrea Hairston
The Do's and Don'ts of Do-Overs: The Art of Fairytale Retellings
Saturday 13:00 - 13:50, Harbor II (Westin)
The mainstream and science fiction communities seem to think they invented retellings, and have christened them "reboots," but the retelling of fairytales is a time-honored tradition. Think about the rainbow of Fairy Books to start with, and Robin McKinley has rebooted Beauty and the Beast, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and her namesake, Robin Hood. Or consider radical retellings like Gregory Maguire's Wicked. What can you change for an acceptable retelling? What must you change? What makes a good retelling of a fairytale?
Elizabeth Bear (M), Elizabeth Hand, Peadar Ó Guilín, Jane Yolen, Theodora Goss
Kaffeeklatsch: Elizabeth Bear and Scott Lynch
Saturday 15:00 - 15:50, Galleria-Kaffeeklatsch 1 (Westin)
Elizabeth Bear, Scott Lynch
Reading: Elizabeth Bear
Sunday 10:30 - 10:55, Griffin (Westin)
Noir & Moral Ambiguity in SF
Sunday 12:00 - 12:50, Marina 3 (Westin)
Noir is a shadowy staple of the futuristic crime tale, emphasizing moral conflict, dark themes, and sexual tension. Films like Blade Runner and Dark City, as well as books like Gibson's Neuromancer and Lethem's Gun, with Occasional Music are gloomy, gritty dramas that demand attention despite our instinct to turn away. Why do they work so well? Panelists discuss some of their favorite future-noir stories, novels, and films.
James Patrick Kelly (M), Laird Barron, Elizabeth Bear, Leigh Perry, Thomas Sweterlitsch, Patrick Nielsen Hayden
Finding Yourself in Story
Sunday 13:00 - 13:50, Harbor II (Westin)
We’ve all encountered fiction it’s hard to forget, but has any piece of literature ever had an actually profound effect on you? Let’s try to go beyond the usual discussion of “most unforgettable moment.” What fictional scene or work has guided you to a decision, sparked a self-realization, lead to an epiphany, or provoked a change in the course of your life? We’ll talk about the stories that truly moved us.
Steven Popkes (M), Elizabeth Bear, David Anthony Durham, Jo Walton, Paul Di Filippo
So I flew down to Galveston to run in the Galveston half-marathon with stillsostrange on Sunday, and also to do Writer Things and confab with her and several other colleagues about Writer Stuff. Many plots were discussed.
On the way down, I caught this amazing triple rainbow over Chicago:
This is what the sky over Galveston looked like at sunset on January 31st:
The day of the race was supposed to be rainy, but instead it was mostly quite sunny, and around 70 degrees. Which is a little on the hot side when you are running 13 miles.
These are our before faces:
And this is the view of the beach along the race course:
Doesn't look quite real, does it? The water and sky were the most amazing hazy agate colors. Absolutely breathtaking in a subtle sort of way. We ran through several old Victorian neighborhoods too, and the houses were lovely. A half-marathon is a great way to tourist!
And these are our "after" faces:
Yeah, it got hot. We were delighted to find a kind guy handing out handfuls of ice to runners at the 11 mile mark. We filled up our hats, and it was a serious relief.
Then I came home to this:
...got some snow.
Here's some tea! Before I left, I was drinking from the Royal Albert morning glories:
And the tea on Thursday was Constant Comment. Because I like it, and I'm not too much of a tea snob to say so.
Today, I lifted--I'm starting a new powerlifting program, and I'm getting serious about the self-discipline, because honestly that half marathon was a LOT harder than such a flat course needed to be, and all my clothes seem to have shrunk--and grocery shopped, and cleaned the kitchen, and made dinner for the house. And then I wrote a bunch of words on the micro robot story, which still has no title but which I think I will finish tomorrow.
Today's first pot of tea was Stash's Portland blend, and the second pot was Stash's Wedding Tea. I have a new teacup! It's a Royal Doulton pattern called White Nile, and though it's not eggshell-amazing translucent like my other Royal Doulton cup, it's very understated and pretty.
Now I'm going to practice some guitar and read for a while before bed.
But before I go--for your delectation, a selection of Galveston signage! Texas never disappoints.
Cthulhu runs a restaurant. Sorry it's blurry, but there's an octopus with an Illuminati eye on that sign, and the text below OLYMPIA GRILL reads, "Since 1500 B.C."
...all right then.
Then there was this one:
You don't say.