eclipse day news blast!

August 21, 2017

If all has gone according to plan, I’m currently ensconced in the path of totality watching the start of the solar eclipse. I’ll let you know how that goes!

Meanwhile, some things got posted while I was out:

URBAN ENEMIES, a new anthology edited by Joseph Nassise, includes my story “Bellum Romanum.”  One guess what it’s about. You know how I like doing origin stories for various side characters? This is an origin story for Roman.

Over at Speculative Chic I wrote an essay about My Favorite Things. Specifically my favorite things right now. None of them will be a surprise to anyone who reads the blog.

Also due out real soon:  INFINITY WARS, edited by Jonathan Strahan. I’m pleased to be in this since it’s not my usual wheelhouse. My story, “The Evening of Their Span of Days,” is about logistics.

I’m sure there’s something I’m forgetting, I’m sure of it, argh….

But hey, books! Aren’t they pretty?!

sitrep: the return!

August 18, 2017

Turns out last weekend was a pretty good time to be out of the country.

So, I’m back. I spent a day riding an Icelandic horse, I bought a lot of Icelandic yarn, I experienced a Finnish sauna, I ate a bunch of cod in one country and then a bunch of salmon in another, added maybe a dozen birds to my life list including the Atlantic puffin.  I took the fast ferry between Helsinki and Tallinn, Estonia — so that’s three new countries checked off on one trip! I learned what Finland did during World War II, which it turns out is very complicated. I caught up with a lot of friends, went to the Hugo Losers Party at Steam Helsinki, a steampunk bar. And yes, I lost a Hugo, and had a great time.

Modern communication being what it is and wifi being everywhere, I kept up with the news pretty well, though I might have wished to be a little more cut off.  Strange days indeed, so while I’m still plowing through emails and doing laundry and sorting out the gifts I brought back for people and planning an eclipse viewing roadtrip (yes, I’m gonna do it!), I leave you with this:

Ten Ways To Fight Hate, from the Southern Poverty Law Center.

 

 

So this is from last December, when the Star Wars: The Power of Costume exhibit came to the Denver Art Museum. I can’t remember if I talked about it at all. But it was really cool to see some of the classic costumes up close, and realize things like Emperor Palpatine’s cloak is made from waffle weave cotton. Heh.  I know the local Star Wars cosplay groups, like the Rebel Legion and 501st, were in heaven.

Just a couple of pics:

The crowd around this one was always thick. It became something of a shrine in the days after Carrie Fisher’s passing.

From a costuming perspective, the cool thing I learned about this iconic outfit:  the body of the dress is one piece. It’s made like a classic SCA T-tunic, the length of fabric draped over the shoulders, with only two seams up the sides, continuing to form the sleeves. The collar and hood are added and fasten in the back.  It’s wonderfully simple and very 70’s when you look at the lines of it out of the context of the film.

This display just made me really happy:

Finn and Rey, BFFs!  And once again, deceptively simple. Much of these costumes are found pieces, patched together.

Mostly what I really loved was the chance to look at costumes, and Star Wars, in the context of art. It’s all art!

 

Worldcon Helsinki!

August 9, 2017

Worldcon Helsinki starts today!

Let’s do this thing! Adventure ho!

 

Worldcon Schedule

August 7, 2017

This week I’m at the 75th Worldcon in Helsinki. Woooooo!!!

Here’s my official convention schedule:

  • Romance and the Power of the Female Gaze:  Thursday 15:00 – 16:00, 208 (Messukeskus):  Romance novels out-sell science fiction and fantasy novels all over the world. How important is the “female gaze” in SF novels and do the best sellers in SF reflect this?

(I’m looking forward to this, because this is one of those topics where I expect to learn tremendously from my fellow panelists.)

  • DC on Screen Now: Friday 12:00 – 13:00, 102 (Messukeskus): There is a huge divide in the way the DC movies and TV shows work – DC’s superheros tend to work better on a smaller screen. The panelists talk about these, compare, contrast and critique.

(Yes, this panel has ME written all over it. Do I have opinions? Oh yes I do. I’ll be your guy in a chair.)

  • Signing: Carrie Vaughn:  Saturday 11:00 – 12:00, Signing area (Messukeskus)

(What it says on the tin. Really looking forward to the chance to chat with people.)

It’s a light schedule, which I’m actually looking forward to because it means more time enjoying the convention. And the Hugo Awards are Friday night! If you see me around, unless it looks like I’m rushing off, I’m usually happy to stop and chat and sign books on the fly.

Worldcon ho!

 

I think I mentioned last month I finally got around to reading Norman Maclean’s A River Runs Through It, after being a fan of the movie for 20 years.

This may be one of the saddest books I have ever read.

This surprised me. The film is bittersweet, but it’s also filled with a love of the river, the land, and family. It’s warm and nostalgic. There’s a sense of helplessness about what happens to Paul. That his tragedy is inevitable, and however much Norm would like to save him, it simply isn’t possible because of who Paul is.

The book is melancholy and saturated with guilt. Here, Norm believes that he should have been able to save Paul. Moreover, if he had only known Paul better, understood him better, been able to connect with him, he could have saved him. Maclean wrote one of the best-known western memoirs as a tribute to his brother, all the while insisting that he didn’t know Paul well enough to be able to write it. And he mourns everything about Paul. The book is told in the voice of an old man, filled with self-recrimination and love.

It’s a strange and heartfelt piece of writing.

 

BANNERLESS roundup

August 2, 2017

A few more BANNERLESS related articles and interviews posted over the last couple of weeks. I thought I’d collect them all in one post. It’s a book, it’s really a book!  Getting some good feedback too! Which is good, because the sequel comes out in a year! Woooo!

Here’s an interview with me over at Lightspeed.

An article in the Boulder Daily Camera.

Interview at Paul Semel.com.

Interview at Clarkesworld.

Recommended by Unbound Worlds.

And there’s a few more to come. Because that’s the nice thing about books, they’ll always be there, they never go out of date.