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Saturday, March 06, 2010

An Impromtu Writers Cabal

I had a very enjoyable evening the other night - something of a surprise get together of fantasy writers.

I'd headed out to South Hadley to see Jedediah Berry and Paul Tremblay read at the Odyssey Bookshop. On arrival, I see Robert Redick is there too. I happen to be reading his Redwolf Conspiracy - and enjoying it very much - at the moment, so it was great to reconnect with him and say so. Also in attendance was Holly Black of Spiderwick Chronicles fame! I'd almost crossed paths with her a bunch of times, but this was the first time we properly met. Lots of chatting ensued.

Of course, we were there to hear Jed and Paul read. That they did, and an engaging reading it was. Paul went first, opening with - I kid you not - a Powerpoint presentation that had mostly to do with his treatment for sleep apnea and resulting severing of his uvula from his body. Strange? Yes it was, but in a tangential way it had everything to do with the protagonist of his weird boiled novel, the narcoleptic private investigator Mark Genevich. Paul then read a bit from No Sleep till Wonderland: A Novel. Good fun.

Jedediah began with a reading from his Crawford Award winning The Manual of Detection. Terrific stuff, also of a detective nature but with a healthy dose of hard to categorize fantastical elements. After that he read from another story he's been cooking up. It was on a pack of cards, which he shuffled and had audience members cut, etc. He then read the segments of the story on the cards in that random order, creating a surreal, comical, strangely cohesive narrative.

That's how readings should be - fun, interactive, playful but still honoring the words and the readers of them.

And then we all went out for food and beer! Now, I've been at a table filled with accomplished - famous even - writers before, but it's also been part of some event like a con or festival or award ceremony. The cool thing about this was that it just happened one Thursday night, pretty much on home turf.

A good time was had by all, I think. Holly didn't even seem to mind being asked several times if she liked the film version of Spiderwick. (She does.) And I learned which of these authors always gets emotionally upset (as in tears flowing) while writing, which one never does, and which one just did so for the first time and considers it a troubling development.

Of course, having tempted you with that, I'll offer no more details. You'll have to join us next time to find out...

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Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Ten Rules For Writing Fiction

I like this piece from the Guardian (which Mike Kimball pointed out to me). It starts with Elmore Leonard's tips, but then goes on with a grabbag of other authors, including Richard Ford, Margaret Atwood, Geoff Dyer, Neil Gaiman, PD James, Phillip Pullman, Michael Morpurgo, Zadie Smith, Jeanette Winterson and many others!

Take a look HERE.

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Monday, March 01, 2010

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms

Here's a fantasy publication I've been looking forward to for a long time. N.K. Jemisin's debut novel, The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, (The Inheritance Trilogy), is out now. I haven't read it yet, but I've known Nora for a little while I expect wonderful things from this book. The response so far seems to have been great, and I know that Orbit invested in her with enthusiasm.

Here's what Publishers Weekly had to say in a Starred Review:

Convoluted without being dense, Jemisin's engaging debut grabs readers right from the start. Yeine desires nothing more than a normal life in her barbarian homeland of Darr. But her mother was of the powerful Arameri family, and when Yeine is summoned to the capital city of Sky a month after her mother's murder, she cannot refuse. Dakarta, her grandfather and the Arameri patriarch, pits her against her two cousins as a potential heir to the throne. In an increasingly deep Zelaznyesque series of political maneuverings, Yeine, nearly powerless but fiercely determined, finds potential allies among her relatives and the gods who are forced to live in Sky as servants after losing an ancient war. Multifaceted characters struggle with their individual burdens and desires, creating a complex, edge-of-your-seat story with plenty of funny, scary, and bittersweet twists.

Sounds good to me.

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Nebula Awards Final Ballot

It's just gone up! The titles in the novel category (where my attention always goes) are:

The Windup Girl, Paolo Bacigalupi (Nightshade, Sep09)

The Love We Share Without Knowing, Christopher Barzak (Bantam, Nov08)

Flesh and Fire, Laura Anne Gilman (Pocket, Oct09)

The City & The City
, China Mieville (Del Rey, May09)

Boneshaker
, Cherie Priest (Tor, Sep09)

Finch
, Jeff VanderMeer (Underland Press, Oct09)

For the rest, take a look HERE. Congrats to them all!

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Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Hampshire Reading

Hey I'm doing a reading!

"Fiction writers Christine Lehner and David Anthony Durham will read from their most recent works of fiction on February 11 at 7 p.m. in the Hampshire College Library Gallery. A book signing and reception will follow the reading. The event is free and open to the public. "

HERE'S more info on it.

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Jedediah Berry

I just want to congratulate Jedediah Berry on winning the 2010 William L. Crawford Award for his first novel The Manual of Detection.

I haven't read the novel yet, but I had the pleasure of hanging out with Jedediah at Readercon last year. Very good guy. I'm looking forward to checking this out. You should too!

Here's the Locus Announcement.

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Friday, January 22, 2010

KGB

I had a terrific time at KGB last Wednesday. I've been lax in posting about it, but that's because I've been rather busy these last few weeks. I'm looking at a week with an even keel, though, and very happy about it.

It was great to show up and immediately see familiar faces. K. Tempest Bradford greeted me, along with Nora Jemison. Before I knew it I was talking with Ellen Kushner, Delia Sherman, Felix Gilman, Rick Bowes, and a contingent of students from the Stonecoast MFA Program. Ellen Datlow and Matthew Kressel were gracious hosts. We had a great crowd, and I think the readings even went well! Yes, I did wear the Campbell Tiara...

I had a great time talking with Lev Grossman, whose The Magicians I quite enjoyed!

After the reading a big crowd of folks headed off to get some really impressive Chinese food, and I ended the evening being a guest of Ellen Kushner and Delia Sherman, who have an absolutely amazing, rambling apartment stuffed full of antiques and thousand and thousands of books!

Yes. A lovely time.

There are more pictures HERE, if you must see...

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Daniel Abraham On Wild Cards

I just read a cool interview with Daniel Abraham over at Tor.com. He speaks about writing collaboratively, and discusses the Wild Card Series writing process in particular. Take a look if you're curious about how the whole "collaborative" novel thing works.

The post is HERE.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

KGB Reading

Hey. I'm reading at KGB in NYC next month!

Just thought you should know. I'm planning on having a ton of fun, and, for once, I'm anticipating a packed house. Why? Cause I'm so awesome? Cause Acacia got that wonderful bump from io9? Just cuz?

Well, no. Actually, I'm reading with Lev Grossman, NY Times Bestselling author of The Magicians: A Novel and Codex, and the book editor at Time Magazine. Heavy hitter. And bald, just like me on a good day. That's okay, though. Fortunately, I have a tiara. I may have to use it. (Mary, would that you were still in NY! I may need Campbell-powered backup.)

The reading is on the evening of Jan 20th. Honestly, it's gonna be tons of fun. (Wait, I said that already. Repetition intentional, to reinforce my honest enthusiasm.)

There's information HERE.

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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

BestFantasyBooks.com

BestFantasyBooks.com as put up a list they call "Best Fantasy Series". I'm just saying. Just letting ya know. Might be of interest.

Oh, alright... Yes, Acacia: The War with the Mein is on it. I'm number 9.

I'm having a pleasant run at the moment.

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Sunday, December 13, 2009

Is This For Real?

Forgive me for wondering that. I should just be humbled and awed and right chuffed, but my innate skepticism keeps me stunned instead.

Take a look at the list of the 20 Best Science Fiction Books Of The Decade, as compiled by io9.

See what I mean? The decade? The decade! And what placement! I know it's just alphabetical, but being at the top like that is way awesome. (Note to authors: try to title your books with letters early in the alphabet, like A, for example.)

Honestly, I can't say a thing about whether or not I deserve to be on such a list. I do appreciate it, though, especially as it's a really good list. Shows a lot of thought in its composition.

I will now go forth and be happy...

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Friday, December 11, 2009

The Year of the Flood

I recently finished Margaret Atwood's The Year of the Flood: A Novel. I liked it. It's her follow up to Oryx and Crake, her earlier novel of the genesis and effects of a human-created pandemic. I guess you could call it a sequel, but it's not quite that. It's more of a companion novel. It covers the same time period, many of the same events, with some of the same characters, but deals with it all from several different perspectives. For one thing, the main characters in this one are female, whereas Oryx and Crake had more male voices.

What I remember liking about Oryx and Crake (although "like" is probably a strange word for it) is that it dealt with a recognizable present, a reasonable near-future, and a catastrophe of a sort that seems... uncomfortably plausible. It just all felt possible. That would suck, except that Atwood manages to infuse all the horror with humor as well.

This new book does the same, although perhaps with more emphasis on the day to day survival challenges facing her female characters. In some ways, that's starker than the time spent with the guys in the earlier book.

I did find it a little convenient that so many of the people the main characters know before "the flood" happen to be around through it and beyond. It allows closure and resolution to some relationships, but it also makes the world seem awfully small, like it revolves around this particular handful of people just bit too much...

But I digress. I'm not here to review. I'm here to recommend. The bottom line is that Atwood brings her usual fine writing into play here. The fact that she does it in firmly sf territory is wonderful.

I wonder if she would turn up for the Hugos or Nebulas if she was nominated?

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Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Reality Behind Fantasy Fiction

Is it just me, or does it seem like fantasy is getting more air time in the mainstream world? Michael Chabon, Lev Grossman, Margaret Atwood have all been on NPR recently. And today I was very pleased to hear Ann and Jeff VanderMeer chatting with Rick Kleffel. Have a listen...



Love it. Makes me want to check out their house in person!

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Friday, November 27, 2009

Thankful For Stuff

I'm still walking around feeling thankful, but I'll resist the urge to list all the reasons why here. But just know that I am... thankful... for stuff. Really.

And now, random things...

The Crotchety Old Fan has a rather exhaustive collection of video from the reading I did with Jeff VanderMeer and Paul Tremblay. I'm not saying you should, but if you wanted to talk a look you could do so HERE. For another angle on the same thing, you could check out Paul Tremblay's post on the same material HERE.

And then there's the random old bit of news that I come across on the internets some time... Like, this piece in Screen Daily.com. No, it's not film news on Acacia. It's film news on my first novel, Gabriel's Story. But don't get me wrong. It's not new news. It's like a year and a half old and there haven't been any new developments (that I'm aware of) since. It's just that I never saw it before.

It did provide me with a new tidbit: the working title. Yes, friends, Gabriel's Story isn't what they're calling it. Instead, it's The Horseman!

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Friday, November 20, 2009

Two Things For Today

One (weeping) I'm going to be dropping Gudrun off at the airport in Boston this afternoon. She's off to Scotland for two weeks to visit with her brand new niece, Georgia. That means I'm the dad with two kids for a while. Advice welcome, of course.

Two (smiling) while I'm still in Boston I'll be slipping over to Borders to read with Jeff VanderMeer and Paul G. Tremblay! It'll be great fun, a night on the town and all that. Join us if you're nearby!

(Hey, anyone seen my kids? I seem to have misplaced them already...)

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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

New Babel Clash Post

I just put up a new post at Babel Clash, about genre hopping this time. It's HERE if you're interested.

Posting it reminds me to mention that my reading with Jeff VanderMeer and Paul G. Tremblay is coming up. It's this Friday in Boston. (Details are in this post.) If you happen to be in the area, please stop by!

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Monday, November 16, 2009

Pelecanos

I've been a George Pelecanos fan for a few years now. After reading exclusively "literary" fiction as a graduate student, it was reading crime novels that first reintroduced me to the genres. Very glad it did, of course, since sff wasn't far behind.

Writers like George Pelecanos helped me make the transition. His novels are always set in and around Washington DC, featuring black characters. He's got quite a few novels to his name now, most recently The Way Home, The Turnaround, The Night Gardener, and Drama City. He's also one of the cats behind the HBO series The Wire, which I enjoyed each and every season of. I met him a couple months ago, and was pleased to hear he's working on a new TV series. I forget what it's called, but I'll keep an eye out for it.

Anyway, that's all part of my introduction to talking about a scene from The Night Gardener. The other part is... Remember that panel from hell I was on back at Worldcon? One of the many unfortunate aspects of that panel included a woman from the audience who - after claiming that she didn't "see" race - then goes on to talk about what she does when she sees a thug-looking kid "jive walking" (I can't swear she said that, but her body language at that moment came pretty close). What she does is to cross the street.

Now, part of what I wanted to say in response is that I don't believe she does see body language and reacts to it, but somehow doesn't see or react to a person's color. What I did manage to say on the spot was that I thought she was making some huge assumptions there. For one, she was assuming that a ghetto walk indicates a predilection to crime. Two is that such a walk is at all intended to send signals to her. I'd argue that a young man's walk - and his hair and his clothes and his music - is part of a survival dialogue between him and other young men. It can all mean a lot of things, but none of it means you can know (or should assume) what's going on in that young man's head.

That's why I was so pleased when I read this scene from The Night Gardener. The book is full of scenes in which Ramone, a white cop, worries about his teenage son - who is mixed race. We see them at home, with mother and father offering all the love and support they can, but we also get glimpses of the son, Diego, having to survive among his peers on the street and in school. Give this a read. Ramone has just stopped off to talk to his son briefly at a basketball court, where Diego was playing with his friends...

Ramone put his arm around Diego's shoulders and the two of them drifted down to the street. Diego returned to the court a few minutes later, and Ramone got in the Tahoe and drove off.

"Detective Ramone," said Shaka. "Man looked serious today."

"Thought he was gonna take you down to the station, something," said Ronald Spriggs.

"What he want?" said Richard.

He told me to get home before dark. He asked me how school went today. He told me he loves me. The same way my mom always does before she hangs up the phone.


"Nothing much," said Diego to Richard. "He just told me to beat you Bamas to within an inch of your lives."

"You mother's a Bama," said Ronald.

Diego said, "Lemme see that rock."


And then the play ball again. It's characteristically brief, straightforward, and more insightful than it may seem. Blink and you'll miss how much Pelecanos is really delving into.

See why this scene means so much to me? It's exactly the kind of thing I was talking about, wishing that person at Worldcon would consider. Diego may have a family and inner life that's about love and support, but outside of his home he needs to act, talk, move in a certain way, with body language and attitude that's likely to look aggressive. You can't glance at him on the street and know what his inner life is like. You can't know if he's thinking about crime and drugs, or about how much he loves his parents, or about being late for band practice...

That's all, but I think it's a lot.

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Friday, November 13, 2009

Babel Clash

Just wanted to mention that some of my blogging this week is happening over at Babel Clash, the Borders Scifi blog. I'm a guest for the next week or so, along with Jeff VanderMeer, Paul Tremblay and Annalee Newitz. Jeff, Paul and me are reading in Boston next Friday, and this is part of the build up to that.

The blog is HERE. Pop over and say hi!

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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Boskone

I just got my first invite to Boskone, the regional sci-fi conference based in Boston. I've never been, but I'd been thinking I was going to go, especially since I'm now based in Massachusetts. So the invitation is very welcome. I'm thinking I'll be there. It's on February 12-14th, at the Westin Waterfront.

My friend John Picacio, artist extraordinaire, will be on hand as one of the guests of honor. Alastair Reynolds will be there as the writer guest of honor. Looks like Lois Mcmaster Bujold will also be in attendance. I'll just be there as me, but I'm cool with that. If you happen to be in the Boston area consider stopping in. I'll post here when I know what panels and/or activities I'll be involved in.

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Monday, November 02, 2009

Thank You Mr. Riordan

My kids have gone mad. They've turned into glazed-eyed zombies. They've shut out the physical world and ventured into a realm in which shouts, prods, invitations to dine and threats of punishment cannot reach them. What's caused this?

Rick Riordan and his creation Percy Jackson. They're the culprits. Because of them my kids have spent the last three weeks inhaling tales of Greek gods run amuck in the modern world. It's been wild, and very cool to watch.

My kids have always had books read to them. Pretty much everyday of their lives, starting with picture books and then early chapter books, and then stuff like Harry and Eragon and Kay Meyer's series. They've listened to tons of audiobooks, and Maya (age 10) has been reading on her own for awhile now, starting with Lily Quench series, into the Mistmantle Chronicles and Varjak Paw (one of her favorites). But there's something about Riordan's Percy Jackson and the Olympians series that clicked for them in a different way.

Perhaps part of it is that Sage (age 8) is right there behind her, sharing the same series with her. Sage was somewhat more hesitant coming to reading. He still remembers and talks about when he feared he'd never be a very good reader. We're homeschooling them, but we make sure to check the school curriculum to see what they'd be doing in school. Looking at the books he'd be reading in school this fall was a bit depressing. They didn't look very... interesting, fun, challenging. They looked dead boring, really. I'm sure that's not the case in total, but it was the impression that we walked away from - and I think it's the impression Sage himself had.

Fast forward a few months, put a book in his hands that 1) he sees his sister enjoying and 2) is filled with action and adventure and 3) he makes the breakthrough. He reads! He doesn't even notice that the series is for 6th to 9th graders, while he's the equivalent of a 3rd grader! He just devours the rather large books like he's starving and they're just the food he's been dreaming about.

Which I guess they are, really.

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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Boston Reading

Hey, I'm doing a reading next month in Boston. It's a triple-header actually, arranged by Jeff VanderMeer and also featuring Paul Tremblay. If you happen to be in Boston on the night, here's the info...

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Nam Le

Herewith, another book recommendation. This one is in the literary fiction category, just in case you've got a hankering for some good short fiction...

The book is called The Boat and the author is Nam Le. I was lucky enough to meet Nam at BEA a couple years back. This was before his book came out. I enjoyed talking with him a bit late into an evening of fine food and free drink, but it was awhile before I got around to reading his collection. As is so often the case, I'm very glad I finally did!

So what do I like about his stories? Each and every one of them is an engaging character study, stories about people living their lives, but with enough happening in them that none of them feel like navel gazing. They're about things, and each story is a trip to a very different place in the world, featuring very different situations and characters.

And that, in a big way, is another thing I love about Nam's work. He's marvelously ambitious. He might - as is mentioned in the first seemingly autobiographical story in the collection - have cashed in on the "ethnic" thing. He's an Australian of Vietnamese origin, an interesting enough identity that he could have played that card effectively to liberally-minded literary readers. Instead, he does something very different. After that opening story about a character that is essentially him, he tells a tale of Colombian assassins, and then one about an aging and ill white artist, and then about a conflict and love story among Australian youths, and then about a Japanese girl during WWII, and then about an American woman caught up in politics and persecution in Iran...

See what I mean? He's all over the globe, and I'd argue he makes each jump with incredible style. At times his stories end with a bit of mystery to them, almost as if the subjects and themes he's working with are larger than he can fit on the page. Other stories - like the title story about Vietnamese refugees - he nails shut to devastating effect.

I got to hang out with him again last month at that Pen/Faulkner event. Good fun. He's working on a novel, and I, for one, am looking forward to it. And just so you know he's not without some interest in the genres... he's on the record as having written a lesbian vampire story! I haven't read it, and it's not in the book. Maybe one day, though...

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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Mind Meld

I just remembered that I forgot to link to a recent Mind Meld I took part in over at SF Signal! This one was about what "book first introduced you to fantasy". I'm in there with Brandon Sanderson and Pat Rothfuss and Kate Elliott and Ken Scholes and many more.

You can take a look HERE.

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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Kindred

I'd read a bit of Kindred before, but recently I sat down with it again and read the whole thing. Very glad I did. It confirms yet again how marvelous I think Octavia Butler is/was.

I've said it before, but I think what I'm still most struck by is the feeling of empathy she seems to convey for all her characters. White or black, slave or free, noble or wicked or a complicated variation of both: no matter what I believe she grasps her characters humanity at it's core, and still manages to show them as living and breathing flawed individuals shaped by personal inclination and societal forces that make it impossible for those cores to remain unaltered.

(Just to warn you, I'm going to mention some plot details here.)

In this case, we have the story of a modern African-American woman, Dana, (who happens to be married to a white man) who gets mysteriously transported back in time to the American South in the early 1800's. She quickly learns that she's been brought back to save the life of a child that will eventually become her ancestor.

Complications? Well, there are many. For one, the ancestor is a white boy from a slave owning family. As a black woman the main character immediately has no rights that any white person needs to respect. It's a wonderful way to juxtapose modern perceptions with Antebellum realities. It doesn't matter how smart she is, how much history she knows, how well she can read: none of it is accepted at face value and all of it puts her in danger as much as it helps her.

I won't say too much more about the specific plot points, but I will aid this – that I love the way Butler's complicated characters defy the type of narrative progressions that we've come to expect in popular literature and film. Frankly, I can see this characteristic of her writing putting some people off. Does Dana's intelligence and insight and all the many things she offers change the perspective of her slave owning masters (and relatives)? Not by a long shot. Does her 20th Century smarts allow her to thrive? Not exactly.

And that's why I treasure Octavia Butler. She humbles me with the breadth of her intelligence and the clear-eye generosity with which she writes about human foibles. I wish she was around to write more, but at least I know I have many more titles of hers yet to read.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Lev Grossman

I heard this interview with Lev Grossman on NPR a while back. Ever since, I've been unsure if he actually said as many cool things as I thought I heard him say. So I gave the piece a try again...

Yep, he said the things I thought he'd said. WTF? Another "literary" writer fessing up to a love of fantasy? And writing it even!?

I haven't read The Magicians: A Novel, but it's definitely on my list now. Anyway, if you didn't hear this before have a listen...

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Monday, September 21, 2009

The Last Light Of The Sun

I'm down in Washington DC now, about to go visit a public school class that's read Gabriel's Story, and then tonight is the big gala ceremony. Should be fun, and nerve-wracking. While I'm busy with that stuff it occurred to me to post a blog I'd had cued up for a few weeks now. So here it is is:

It's always embarrassing to admit when I haven't read an author that I really, really should have read ages ago. One of those, for me, was Guy Gavriel Kay. I'd thoroughly enjoyed it when reviewers compared me to him when Acacia: The War with the Mein came out, but it was just one of many comparisons that didn't have anything to do with direct influence.

Anyway, I'd met him a couple of times before, and when I knew I was going to be on a panel with him at Worldcon I figured it was REALLY time to read the man. For no good reason at all, I chose The Last Light of the Sun. Very glad I did.

I enjoyed it a lot. I know it's different in many ways than his Fionvavar Tapestry books, but it was still a great introduction - for me in particular - to his work.

For one thing, I've enjoyed reading Anglo-Saxon and Norse tales in the past. I rather enjoyed Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Chronicles, and was impressed to see that Kay's rendering of this distant, violent world stands strong in comparison to it. For much of the novel it feels pretty much like a straight historical. Later on the Faerie influence becomes more pronounced, but in many ways the feats of prophecy and the interactions with the fantastic seem a natural product of the characters' culture and religious beliefs. Skillfully blended.

His writing was controlled and artistic, but also direct, muscular when it needed to be, and generally well crafted. I can't tell you how much that matters to me. So, I'm very glad to be a new fan of Mr. Kay's. I'll look forward to getting back to his other work soon.

Of course, at the moment I'm reading a lot of Wild Cards novels. Oh, and lots of student manuscripts... and a couple of graduate theses... and...

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Monday, September 14, 2009

Praise From a Rock Star

Mega-prolific author Jay Lake just wrote a generous and funny review of Acacia: The War with the Mein and The Other Lands (Acacia, Book 2). I'm psyched. Jay is awesome, and it makes me very happy to hear that he likes my work too. Among other things, he wrote:

"Epic fantasy is so well established a genre that it’s always fascinating when someone comes along and tips over my expectations. Durham has done this in a big way."

Of course, there's also a level of pure relief in receiving all of these early responses. Each new reader that gets to the end of the book and gives it the thumbs up is confirmation that I haven't entirely driven the series off a cliff. Yes, all writers have moments of insecurity.

You can check out Jay's response at his website HERE. And it's safe to read. No plot details. Just enthusiasm!

(By the way, isn't that author illustration rock star cool? Snagged it from Jay's website.)

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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Hobnobbing... And The Story Of How I Really Won The Campbell...

Anticipation was definitely a productive con in terms of hobnobbing with author and publishing types. I can never remember everyone, but here's a partial list of folks I got to hang out with, in no particular order at all: John Scalzi, Elizabeth Bear, Mary Robinette Kowal, Jay Lake, Melinda Snodgrass, Patrick Rothfuss, Doselle Young, Paolo Bacigalupi, Jim Kelly, Ellen Kushner, Ellen Datlow, Guy Gavriel Kay, Nalo Hopkinson, Neil Gamain (just thought I'd slip that in there), Neal Stephenson (very brief), Catherynne M. Valente, Jetse de Vries, Jennifer Jackson, George RR Martin (and Parris), Ian Tregillis, Gardner Dozois, Lou Anders, John Picacio, Paul Cornell, Cory Doctorow, David Levine, Jonathan Strahan, Geoff Ryman, L E Modesitt, NK Jemison, Cheryl Morgan, Daniel A. Rabuzzi, Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Amelia Beamer, Gary K Wolfe, John Kessel, Tobias Buckell, Gregory Wilson, Pat Cadigan, Kate Nepveu, Kyle Cassidy, Niall Harrison, Joe and Gay Haldeman... Geez. Makes me think I know a few people in this business now.

And, of course, I really enjoyed the brief snatches of time I got to spend with the other Campbell Finalists. It was a bit strange at first. Hey, we were all up for the same award. Felix Gilman and I first met when we had a signing together. We didn't do much signing, admittedly. Mostly we were just sitting there a little awkward as an occasional person either 1) stood in front of Felix and told him how great he was while I feigned interest in the length of Cory Doctorow's neverending line, or 2) as (a different person) stood in front of me and said how awesome I was as Felix rearranged the display of his books... Kinda strange.

Aliette de Bodard came and visited. More polite conversation ensued. I knew already that liked all these folks, but that strange award tension/reality sort of hung over everything. First time I bumped into Tony Pi, he stipulated that he wished me exactly as much luck as I wished him. Sort of an even exchange. Fair enough, really.

But still, well... a few drinks can help loosen things up. For example, all tension was gone on the party floor the night before the award ceremony when Tony Pi and Gord Sellar accosted me coming out of an elevator. They had devised a way to cut through all the suspense and predict the winner ahead of time. Easy. All we each had to do was make a paper airplane of our own design, and then compete to see who could throw it furthest. By the time I got involved, Tony and Aliette were already disqualified. It was me against Gord in this round.

We just barely managed to clear enough space in the crowded hallway, but then we tossed... This may have been where my competitors erred. You see, I do have two kids. I have made and tossed airplanes more recently than many. On this occasion, Gord's plane dove for the carpet and mine lofted above the heads of admiring fans... Or something like that. Might be imagining that part, but the result was clear enough. I won. Felix didn't compete and I don't think any of us found him that night, but the dye was cast.

And that, friends, is the true story of how I won the John W Campbell Award. I tossed a paper airplane a few feet longer than my competition. As good a way to decide things as any, I imagine. It's fitting, really, because I don't for a minute think awards like this have anything to do with who is "Best". No chance. It's about being lucky. Yes, some talent is helpful. Hard work is a must. But that's what got us ALL there as finalists. What it really comes down to is being lucky. That's what I was.

I also feel fortunate to have been able to spend time with Aliette, Tony, Gord and Felix. I hope they'll consider me a friend, as I'm absolutely positive they'll be doing great work for some time to come. I know we'll all meet again, and I hope that we'll do so as comrades. I have every intention of following their careers and pointing out their successes every chance I get.

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Friday, August 14, 2009

Blighted Heart

I just noticed at Beneath Ceaseless Skies has published a print and audio version of Blighted Heart by Campbell Finalist Aliette de Bodard. Aliette is very cool. (And she was just a few votes away from being the Campbell "Winner" instead of finalist.)

Like her work or want to get to know it? Well... Read it HERE.

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Blair Witch Panel

Kathryn Cramer has aptly named my last Worldcon panel "The Blair Witch Panel". It was so weird, friends. So weird. She actually didn't stay for most of it, but what she did she she captured on film.

Go take a look.

I'm not sure I can explain what happened. I mean, I was there, yes. I saw and heard what happened, but it was just all so weird right from the start. Admittedly, I didn't arrive knowing exactly what to make of the topic (something about Cultural Memory) or with much prepared to say. I knew I wasn't moderating, so hoped that however was would give some shape to it. Alas, there was no moderator.

Okay, perhaps we could still pull it together, though, right? Blind Lemming Chiffon picks a guy out of the audience (I don't know who he was) and he jumps up to moderate. We start to define the topic and terms and realize that none of us really have them defined. We're just making it up. Patrick Nielsen Hayden points this fact out. Good point, but already he's getting grumpy. Audience starts trying to help. Blind Lemming Chiffon has a grand idea that the topic can be summed up by a song that a friend of his wrote. He asks her to sing and she jumps up to do so. As the guitar comes out Patrick bolts for the door, muttering curses. The woman... sings a song about... oh, I don't know. Who could listen? At this point I'm just watching the exodus of audience members, wishing I was one of them.

Geoff Ryman, to his credit, tries to get some shape to the discussion. Perhaps unfortunately, though, he mentions race... Oh boy, suddenly we have a race panel! One woman in the audience in particular stands up talking about how she doesn't "see" color, and then follows this with all sorts of offensive, prejudiced comments, complete with some body jive and the mention that though she grew up in LA she's since escaped to Alaska...

And so passed the session. I don't know that we made a bit of sense. I have to say, I really, really wanted to leave. I only didn't because it struck me as disrespectful to the people that came to see the panel and were still sitting there. If there's an upside it's that those people were still there at the end, and they seemed to feel a sense of camaraderie with us for having survived it.

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Love This Photo Of Scalzi in Triumph

Check it out at Whatever.

One day I'll roar like that.

Oh, and yes, admittedly he does say a nice word or two about me. ;)

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Saturday, August 08, 2009

Two Days Down, Now the Crunch

Hello. Up early on Saturday morning. Today is the crunch day in terms of panels and events at Worldcon. I'm booked up the entire day. I wish I found this stuff more relaxing. Instead, I tend to worry about each panel that I'm on, trying to figure out what words of wisdom I'll have, wondering the whole time why they picked me for it. It's silly, I know. Truth is, I'm usually pleasantly surprised at how disorganized and casual most panels are, how off topic, how rambling... Guess that's what I should aim for!

I did have my Neil Gaiman panel yesterday. Done. Anyone that attended now knows how much of a Gaiman fan I am. Proudly. Met Nalo Hopkinson for the first time in person - although I felt like I already knew her. Lots of short conversations with great people, all of whom are being pulled this way and that in this crazy web of events and obligations. Also had the Wild Cards dinner with George and the gang yesterday. Very nice. Fun group of people. Lots of laughs.

About the only thing I haven't done too much this time is party. I've got the family with me, and the late night scene has yet to feel quite right when I know my wife and kids are here but I haven't seen them all day. Maybe tonight. GRRM's fan club is throwing a party tonight. I've been to one of these before, and I know they host with enthusiasm...

Off con... Randolph Carter at Grinding To Valhalla has put up an interview I did with them. They're a gaming-focused website, but they also do author interviews and have many aspiring authors among their ranks. I was glad to take part. You can see it Here.

Okay. Gotta run. Long day ahead, though I'm sure it will also pass in a blur.

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Friday, August 07, 2009

Windup Girl Cover

Isn't this a pretty cover for an upcoming book?

I think so, and I like this guy Paolo Bacigalupi quite a bit. I'm going to go try to find him here in Montreal. He's around somewhere, maybe going to pick up a Hugo soon...

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Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Looking Northward

So I'm about to head off to Montreal for Anticipation, this year's Worldcon. I've got the entire family with me this time. Should be good. I mentioned my schedule in a previous post, so I won't go through it again here. I'll just say that I'm doing a bunch of stuff and that I want to see a bunch more stuff. There. That's it. I will be gratified and disappointed in equal measure, I'm sure, and it will all be worth it.

Oh… And the Durham's will be having sushi with Mary Robinette Kowal tomorrow night. Lovely. And on Friday I'm dining with... oh, George RR Martin and some of the Wild Cards crew. Saturday? Who knows? Maybe I'll get my hooks into Neil. One can dream, yeah? (Actually, on that... Gudrun has been stalking Neil - along with many others - on Twitter. She even got a response from him once, something about Gnomes and adjectives.) Truth be told, I have Neil on the brain just now, especially as I'm on that panel about his fiction and he is the guest of honor and all that...

Just finished The Graveyard Book, by the way. One day, I'll write something with an ending that's as life affirming and touching. Someday. Hopefully soon.

But not tomorrow. Tomorrow I'll start by driving through Vermont and into Canada. Oh... also, you know I'm up for an award? The John W Campbell Award. Won't find out what's happened with that until Sunday night. Please, though, think positive for me. It would mean a lot to win this one.

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Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Fantasy Magazine's Gateway Books

Over at Fantasy Magazine they're conducting a survey.

They've a list of books people suggested as possible gateway books, titles that might be good ones to introduce people to the genre. Somebody was nice enough to make sure Acacia: The War with the Mein got on the list. That's nice. I've no thoughts that I'll make it to the next round - of twenty. There are just too many beloved books to choose from, many of them great choices, I think. But it's nice to be on the longlist!

If you want to take a look and vote click Over To Here. Have a say!

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Sunday, July 26, 2009

Suicide Kings Cover

GRRM just sent me the final cover for the forthcoming Wild Cards book, Suicide Kings. Full on action. Cool...

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Friday, July 24, 2009

David Liss Interview

I just came across an interview with David Liss at Girls Just Reading. David is one of my favorite historical novelists, author of The Whiskey Rebels, A Conspiracy of Paper, The Coffee Trader, among others. His newest is The Devil's Company, which I haven't read yet, but will soon.

Now, as I send you over to the interview I should mention that David isn't just a favorite author because he writes entertaining, smart, well-plotted historical fiction about memorable characters. That's more than enough, but I also should mention that he's been know to say nice things about my writing - as he does in this interview. Smart guy, indeed.

The interview is HERE.

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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Maya and Sage's Book Recommendations

A while back some kind person asked if I had suggestions for books that I thought were especially good for kids. I figured the best source to reference were my own kids, so I asked them.

Maya (10) and Sage (8) came up with the following list. It starts with picture books and moves forward up to the stuff they’re reading now.

The Gruffalo,by Julia Donaldson
Pumpkin Soup, by Helen Cooper
Where's My Mom?,
Room on the Broom, by Julia Donaldson
I Will Not Ever Never Eat a Tomato (Charlie & Lola), by Lauren Child
Catwings (4 Volume Set), by Ursula K LeGuin
Hachiko Waits, by Leslea Newman
The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread, by Kate DiCamillo
Dragon Rider, Cornelia Caroline Funke
Varjak Paw, by SF Said
The Outlaw Varjak Paw, by SF Said
Amazing Story Of Adolphus Tips, by Michael Morpurgo
Pirate Curse (The Wave Walkers Book One), by Kai Meyer
Stardust, by Neal Gaiman (Yeah, they read the saucy stuff too.)

At the moment, Maya is reading Keys to the Kingdom, by Garth Nix. Sage is reading
Redwall (Redwall, Book 1), by Brian Jacques.

This is by no means a comprehensive list. But these are the titles that came to mind when I asked.

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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Anticipation Schedule!

I know I never really did a post on Readercon. That's because right after it I was off an away to Maine for the Stonecoast MFA residency, and that's rather intensive. It's all a bit of a blur, really. I just got back yesterday and I'm trying to normalize now, catching up on lots of stuff. One thing that happened over the weekend pertains to the next conference on my schedule, so I'll just slide right into that...

So I now know what I'll officially be doing at Worldcon next month in Montreal (aka Anticipation). It's a fair bit of programming, actually, and includes some cool nuggets that make perfect sense and some other slots that make me look at the screen cross-eyed. So be it. I'm happy to play. My Anticipation Schedule (as of 7/18/09):

Title: Elizabeth Bear and David Anthony Durham: First Novels
When: Thu 16:30
Location: P-513B
Session ID: 773
Participants: David Anthony Durham, Elizabeth Bear
Description: Elizabeth Bear and David Anthony Durham interview each
other about how they work and how they got their first book(s)
published.
Title: The Fiction of Neil Gaiman
When: Fri 14:00
Location: P-516AB
Session ID: 533
Participants: Bruce Lindsley Rockwood, David Anthony Durham, kyle
cassidy, Paul Kincaid, Lily Faure
Description: A look at our Guest of Honour's work in novels and short
stories.

Title: Author Reading
When: Fri 17:00
Location: P-521A
Session ID: 220
Participants: David Anthony Durham, Janice Cullum Hodghead,
Shariann Lewitt
Description: Janice Callum Hodghead; David Anthony Durham; Nina
Harper

Title: David Anthony Durham Signing
When: Sat 10:00
Location: P-Autographs
Session ID: 1310
Participants: Ellen Datlow, Cory Doctorow, Jean-Claude Dunyach, Felix Gilman and Robert Silverberg

Title: We are the Knights Who Say f***!
When: Sat 12:30
Location: P-518A
Session ID: 627
Participants: David Anthony Durham, Guy Gavriel Kay (Moderator), Marc
Gascoigne
, Pat Rothfuss
Description: Diction in fantasy used to be pretty formal, and,
indeed, this can be a problem for the contemporary reader in getting
on with The Lord of the Rings. But more recent epic fantasies have had
their characters speaking more demotic language (and with a fair bit
of Anglo-Saxon thrown in). What are the costs of doing this? Does it
really make things easier for readers?
Duration: 1:30 hrs:min

Title: Writing the Other and Other Assumptions
When: Sat 14:00
Location: P-511A
Session ID: 554
Participants: David Anthony Durham, Jon Courtenay Grimwood, Kate
Nepveu, Wendy Gay Pearson, Jamie Nesbitt Golden
Description: Do discussions of Writing the Other reinforce the power
dynamics of a genre structured by racial hierarchies? Is the
assumption that the Other is "of colour" coded into all our
discussions?

Title: David Anthony Durham Kaffeeklatsch
When: Sat 15:30
Location: P-521B
Session ID: 1085
Participants: David Anthony Durham
Description: A chance to ask one of your favourite authors those
burning questions.

Title: Getting It Right: Warfare and History
When: Sat 19:00
Location: P-512CG
Session ID: 718
Participants: David Anthony Durham, Dawn Hewitt, L. E. Modesitt,
Jr., Mike Resnick (Moderator)
Description: Panelists discuss military history around the world and
how to get it right in your work, whether you're writing fantasy,
science fiction or alternate history.

Title: Hugo Awards Reception
When: Sun 18:00
Location: P-710A
Session ID: 10
Participants: Neil Gaiman, Elisabeth Vonarburg, Taral Wayne, Tom
Doherty, Julie E. Czerneda, Alan F. Beck, Aliette de Bodard, Ann
VanderMeer, Beth Meacham, Bill Willingham, Cheryl Morgan, Christopher
J. Garcia, Cory Doctorow, Darlene Marshall, Dave Howell, David Anthony
Durham, David Hartwell, Elizabeth Bear, Ellen Datlow, Emma Hawkes,
Farah Mendlesohn, Gord Sellar, Gordon Van Gelder, Guy H. Lillian III,
Jay Lake, John Helfers, John Kessel, Jonathan Strahan, Karl Schroeder,
Kathryn Cramer, Kevin J. Maroney, Kij Johnson, Lillian Stewart Carl,
Lou Anders, Mary Robinette Kowal, Mike Resnick, Nancy Kress, Neil
Clarke, Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Paul Cornell, Paul Kincaid, Rev. Randy
Smith, Sean Wallace, Stephen H. Segal, Yves Meynard, Steve Green,
Steven H Silver, Sue Mason, Tony Pi, Claude Lalumière, Mike Glyer,
John Hertz, John Scalzi, Stanley Schmidt, Charles Stross, John
Picacio, Frank Wu, Sheila Williams, Felix Gilman, Ginjer Buchanan,
LeAmber Kinsley, Paolo Bacigalupi, Pia Guerra, Tobias Buckell

Title: Cultural Memory, Societal Resilience and Change
When: Mon 12:30
Location: P-512BF
Session ID: 910
Participants: Blind Lemming Chiffon, David Anthony Durham, Geoff
Ryman
(Moderator), Lancer Kind
Description: How important is cultural memory? Does it support or
hinder social change? Does it matter whether it is given up
voluntarily or taken away by force?

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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Lamentation

Time for a book recommendation!

First a note, though... When I recommend a book I don't do so in the form of an in depth review that weighs up everything. Other folks do that. When I recommend something it just means it captured my interest and attention in a strong way, stood out a bit. It doesn't mean I think it's perfect, because I don't believe it perfection, really. It does mean that whatever those blemishes were they were as natural as features of a person's face. The imperfections are part of the whole, part of the experience, part of why the work is unique. And, of course, they're trumped by the things I liked. And in this case the book I liked was...

Lamentation (The Psalms of Isaak), by Ken Scholes. Ken's a good writer, and the world he's created here is an interesting mix of fantasy and sf, a little steampunkish as well. Here's what Booklist had to say:

In his first novel, a vividly imagined sf-fantasy hybrid set in a distant, post-apocalyptic future, Scholes, already highly praised in the speculative-fiction community for his dazzlingly inventive short fiction, turns his talent up a notch. When an ancient weapon destroys Windwir, the Named Lands' greatest city and repository of knowledge, the only surviving member of the city's Androfrancine order is the metallic android Isaak. Rudolfo, lord of the Ninefold Forest Houses, finds Isaak surprisingly intact in the Windwir's smoldering ruins and guilt-ridden over his role in the city's downfall. Yet Rudolfo quickly begins to suspect that Sethbert, overseer of the neighboring Entrolusian City States, is the real culprit and starts girding his Gypsy Scouts for battle. So begins Scholes' Psalms of Isaak, a projected five-volume saga containing all the ingredients of a first-rate epic-magic, arcane science, and a handful of compelling protagonists. By the end of the novel, the reader is caring deeply about the characters and looking forward with burning anticipation to the sequels.

Here's what the Fantasy Book Critic had to say.

Here's what Adventures in Reading thought.

And here's Tia Nevitt's verdict at Fantasy Debut.

Honestly, they make enough in-depth points that I'll just direct you to them without a whole lot of commentary. What I will say is that I really enjoyed that Ken wrote the book for grown ups. Lusty grown ups. Intrigue-hungry grownups. Grownups that like a bit of cataclysmic destruction and knife fights with invisible scouts. Stuff like that. But Scholes' writing, unlike much of what's out there in fantasy, doesn't feel YA. Oh, how I liked that about it...

Ken was kind enough to send me a copy of Canticle (The Psalms of Isaak), the second in the series. I've got a full plate at the moment, but I'm glad to have it on my shelf, knowing I'll pick it up before too long.

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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Which Science Fiction Writer Are You?

So, a random thing I've had in my blog queue for a while. Might as well roll it out now since I'm driving across this great nation of ours. (That's the US I'm talking about.)

I am:
Ursula K. LeGuin
Perhaps the most admired writing talent in the science fiction field.

Yes, I'll admit it. I am Ursula. At least, that was the verdict after I took this online survey. Hey, I dig that outcome. I even wrote her a long gushing letter a few years back about how much of an influence she was on me, etc. Didn't hear back. But I'd send it again - since it's true.

But that's me. Which science fiction writer are you?

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Friday, May 29, 2009

Video Interviews!

I guess I'm not entirely finished with talking about Imaginales. Thanks to Cheryl Morgan, I'll be doing so for a while on YouTube! Here's me talking...



And here's Hal Duncan...



And here's Patricia Briggs...



And here's Bruce Holland Rogers...

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Saturday, May 23, 2009

More Synergy!

I've been Synergized again over at BSC.

Take a look, if not because of me than because you're curious about what authors were important to the likes of Charles Stross, Jackie Kessler, Peter V. Brett, Ken Scholes, Robert V.S. Redick, Colleen Doran and others...

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Friday, May 22, 2009

Ursula Gets Respect

I first saw this at Cheryl's Mewsings, where she also has up a full Imaginales Con report. It's an article in the UK's Guardian newspaper (that would be the one my father in law reads) about Ursula K LeGuin's influence on a generation of writers.

I like it, especially as it points lucidly to the fact that many of the best "literary" writers working these days have been nourished by fantasy.

I'm just forty now, but proud to say I'm one of that generation that has been influenced for the better by LeGuin's work.

Where would I have been without Ged?

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Thursday, May 07, 2009

Felix Gilman

I just received my voting packet for the Hugos. The deadline isn't until July, but I should get things tied up with my pieces on each of the John W. Campbell Award Finalists. So...

There's only one left: Felix Gilman, who happens to be the other novelist on the ballot! He's the author of Thunderer and Gears of the City. Thunderer got a lot of praise, including stuff like this...

"This masterly first novel is as stunning and unexpected as a thunderclap out of a clear blue sky." --Paul Witcover.

"That thunderous, earth-shattering sound vibrating through the pavement and up-ending your coffee is the harbinger of approaching giants: first-time novelist Felix Gilman's incredibly imaginative New Weirdish urban fantasy Thunderer ... a brilliant new author." --Jeff VanderMeer.

Great recommendations by two great guys. It also garnered him a nominated for a Locus Award for Best First Novel.

So Mr. Gilman is a contender. I'm pretty sure he agreed to have a beer with me in Montreal, as well, so it's all good.

Other info? Well, there's more info on his website, of course, but Felix was born in London in 1974. That sounds fairly straightforward. I'll put quotes around this next bit, though: "He holds two degrees in history from Oxford, a J.D. from Harvard Law School, a doctorate in Ludology from the Waldzell School of the Order of Castalia, and certain advanced but curiously non-specific qualifications in modern American poetry from the National University of Zembla."

Also he went to Hogwarts. Why not?

Here's Mary Robinette Kowal's Interview with him.

Here's one with Jeff VanDermeer.

And that concludes my wee collection of posts about my fellow noms. I think that together we're an interesting bunch, happily diverse and stylistically varied. Of course, I'm sure we all want to win the thing, but - regardless - it still means a lot to me to be included in lists like this. So best of luck to Aliette, Gord, Tony and Felix. I'll hold a bit of that back for myself, and then I'll hope to see you all in Montreal - to celebrate. No matter what, it'll be a good time!

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Saturday, May 02, 2009

Paolo Bacigalupi

At Readercon last year I had the pleasure of being on a panel with Paolo Bacigalupi. A little later I had a signing session, which basically means I sat at a table with a pen in my hand, smiling awkwardly as people walked by. Paolo was good enough to sit down and hang out, and I've remembered that conversation since.

It was terrific in that he's a lot of fun to talk to, humorous and smart and easy going. What's strange about this is that he pretty much spent the entire time explaining the horrible state of the environment, the futility of the measures we're taking (or not) at the moment, and generally making me very scared of all things plastic. This guy knows way too much about way too much. Odd that he smiles so often... I do take a measure of hope from the fact that he's a father, so he hasn't completely given up.

He's a hell of a writer, too. His collection, Pump Six and Other Stories is terrific, even if it's not exactly light reading. Here's what Publishers Weekly said in a starred review:

Bacigalupi's stellar first collection of 10 stories displays the astute social commentary and consciousness-altering power of the very best short form science fiction. The Hugo-nominated The Calorie Man explores a post–fossil fuel future where genetically modified crops both feed and power the world, and greedy megacorporations hold the fates of millions in their hands. The People of Sand and Slag envisions a future Earth as a contaminated wasteland inhabited by virtually indestructible post-humans who consume stone and swim in petroleum oceans. The Tamarisk Hunter deals with the effects of global warming on water rights in the Southwest, while the title story, original to this volume, follows a New York sewage treatment worker who struggles to repair his antiquated equipment as the city's inhabitants succumb to the brain-damaging effects of industrial pollutants. Deeply thought provoking, Bacigalupi's collected visions of the future are equal parts cautionary tale, social and political commentary and poignantly poetic, revelatory prose.

Nice. I mention him now because he's back in the award game again. His story, "The Gambler" is nominated for a Hugo in the Novelette category. You can read it over at the Pyr Website. He's up against some folks I really like, so it's darn hard to say who I want to win. But still, today I'm a Paolo mood, hence this post.

I also "enjoyed" reading a recent Interview he did with EcoGeek. Go take a look. (Oh, and I should note, as Paolo did on his blog, that the interview got reposted at io9. Quite a few people went ballistic there.)

Here's another one from last year, at Omnivoracious.

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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Religious Mind Meld

Over at SF Signal my mind has been melded with that of several other authors, including Michael Swanwick, Elizabeth Bear, Kate Elliott, Gregory Frost and others!

Check it out here: God's by the Bushel.

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Monday, April 27, 2009

Nebula Awards

The Nebula Award Ceremony was held over the weekend. The winners are... well, winners. I could post them here, but I first saw them at Science Fiction Awards Watch, so I'll send interested folks over that way instead.

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Sunday, April 26, 2009

Evil Robot Monkey

How about an audio story for your Sunday morning (or afternoon, or evening, or whenever)?

"Mary Robinette Kowal's Evil Robot Monkey is very short and bitterly moving, about an uplifted chimp," says, Rich Horton in Locus. The story was published in The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction Vol. 2 (2008), and it snagged Mary a Hugo nomination just one year after walking away with the John W Campbell tiara.

Joe Sherry at Adventures in Reading liked it. Here's Joe's Review.

Want to judge for yourself? Well, that's easy. Just pop over to Mary's site and listen to her read the story especially for you. She's a great reader, and it's a very short story, just about six minutes. You've got six minutes to spare, don't ya?

Note: I snipped this image from Boing Boing. I believe Mary did the illustration herself. Multi-talented she is...

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