Deadpool 2

May 23, 2018

Deadpool 2 is exactly what it says on the tin. If it seems a little less shocking and surprising than the first one, it’s because it isn’t the first one and we know what to expect now. So it was never going to have the same jolt, I think.

It even does that thing the first one did where it’s essentially a basic, conventional superhero story:  our previously lone-wolf hero has to learn to work with a team and become a mentor to a semi-cloying moppet. I’m not really being fair here, Russell is much more than a moppet, I actually like the character. But still, this is a Trope, and now both Deadpool movies have hung their cosmetic subversiveness on really familiar formulae. It’s a bit jarring, at least to me. I’m still grappling with what’s basically a kid-centric story told through this incredibly violent, raunchy, foul-mouthed filter. The more I think of it the weirder it gets.

Oh, and this one thing: BIG SPOILER HERE:




So the movie fridged Vanessa in the first scene and that made me so angry. Because this wasn’t “we’ve killed off beloved characters because we’re telling a good story and we’re setting up something big we promise” of Infinity War.  This was “we can’t figure out how to tell stories about people in stable, happy relationships so we need to kill off the love interest to give the hero angst.”

Except, you know, time travel and they undid it at the end, I guess.

But I still spent a big chunk of the movie being disappointed and frustrated.



I didn’t get up in time to watch the royal wedding but I caught up online. Everything was just so pretty. You know what I kept thinking of? Gregor and Laisa from the Vorkosigan books. Not their appearance (which isn’t anything like in the books) but in the way Harry and Meghan act with each other, all happy and a little bit clingy, and the way Meghan’s been thrown into this very weird and public culture and is doing just great with it, and the feeling you get that they’d run away if they could but they’re too aware of the propriety of it all to actually do it. So that’s in my head now and it made me happy.

Remember the year of stalled projects? I took one of those 3/4 finished novels and decided to turn it into a novella.  Good news:  I think it was meant to be a novella all along. (Seriously, at the moment I’m very, very, very happy it didn’t see the light of day in its previous state. It was an unholy mess.) I’ve cut 20k words from it and am turning the whole thing into a tightly plotted streamlined machine. I’m happy. Here’s hoping I can get this one out in the world.

Deadpool 2 review on Wednesday.

Have a good week, peeps.


The ebook of Bannerless is going to be on sale for $2.99 one day, Sunday. So if you’ve been waiting for a sale… this is it! Go go go!  Here’s a link to editor John Joseph Adams’ page for the book, which has links to all the ebook retailers of your choosing.

My reviews of Annihilation and A Wrinkle in Time are up on Lightspeed.

In other news, Amazon is shutting down Kindle Worlds, their licensed fanfic arm, surprising pretty much no one. They never really promoted the platform to readers. Ultimately, I think there are too many established fanfic platforms out there, getting people onto this one was a struggle. Amazon failed to monopolize something, y’all.

But I do have two G.I. Joe stories up there, and if you’ve thought about trying them out, now’s your chance because they’ll be gone soon.

“That Famous Silent Issue” features Scarlett and Snake Eyes rescuing a diplomat without ever speaking a word.

“Luck Be a Lady” features Lady Jaye and Cover Girl battling Baroness on the streets of Las Vegas. And a cameo by a ridiculous scummy casino mogul named Eugene Tramp who it turns out is a shill for Cobra! Like that could ever happen in real life…


June’s going to be busy:

I’ll be on programming at Denver Comic Con on Friday and Saturday. The con is June 15-17.

I’m a Guest of Honor at SoonerCon in Oklahoma, June 22-24.

And right in the middle there I’m a guest lecturer at Taos Toolbox.

Seriously, I don’t mean to schedule everything all at the same time…



May 14, 2018

I am becoming a morning tea drinker. Is it getting older, or am I just that tired? I used to be strictly an afternoon tea drinker, but there’s been some times recently when all that was available in the morning was tea, and sometimes when traveling a morning tea is so nice. Also a cup of tea in the morning while camping, when everything’s chilly and there’s a mist in the air and I haven’t quite woken up, is just divine. It’s like a warm hug for my internal organs.

At any rate, it’s 9:30 am right now and I’m drinking tea. Maybe it’s because it rained all night and it’s still gray out and I need a hug.

I’ve also become the sort of tea drinker who has lots and lots of different teas. My favorites:

Harney and Sons Earl Grey Supreme. I think this was the first time I could really smell what Earl Grey is supposed to smell like, and I think it got me high.

Dryad Tea Selkie blend. This is a green tea with lemon and ginger that is perfect with honey, and good for sore throats.

Green tea. Just plain green tea is what I like in the morning, and what I’m drinking right now.

Jasmine green tea. A good pick me up, especially in the afternoon.

Yorkshire tea. Good for cold rainy days.

Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime and Tension Tamer are my go-to before bed teas.

You see, I have become a person who has an opinion about tea. Didn’t used to be like this.


working working…

May 11, 2018

I have somehow once again got myself to the point where everything I have to work on are revisions. Like, five of them. I’ve been feeling super-productive and now I’ve just stalled out. Argh. Okay, gotta get some of this done.

Meanwhile, I’ve been laughing because I’ve seen a bunch of posts about what a great and underrated movie Speed Racer is and just want to remind everyone that I loved it and told everyone to go see it ten years ago.


Not just spoilers, but a prediction:

So I saw Infinity War again and I really really really meant to pay attention to the structure, because it’s not a three-act structure and I want to figure out how they juggled all those stories and characters. But I got sucked in to all the amazing heart-wrenching things happening on screen just like before and didn’t pay attention as well as I wanted. This time, the most heartbreaking thing was Vision’s line to Wanda:  “It shouldn’t be you, but it is.” Ugh. Paul Bettany. Weeping.

I think I’m going to have to wait for the DVD and sit down with a pen and paper and do a flow chart. Because basically, this is three movies spliced together and none of the seams show, and it’s great. I thought there were four movies, but I think it’s just three, it’s just that the connective tissue is all the B-stories connected to the A-stories.

The A-stories are Tony, Thor, and Thanos. They have the character arcs, they have the plots, they lead the side quests, they’re driving all the stuff.

The B-stories:  Bruce is the B-story to the Thor plot. Gamora is the B-story to the Thanos plot. And I didn’t see it at first, but I think Vision and Wanda are the B-story to the Tony plot. Which I missed because they don’t actually interact through the entire film, but Vision is Tony’s creation, basically, so yes. They’re connected.

What’s genius about all this and why I’m going to have to draw a flow chart at some point is the B stories are the glue that hold the A stories together and successfully merge it all into one movie. They’re the ones who cross over. They’re the ones carrying the overall plot from one character to the next, one scene to the next.

I’m having trouble fitting one character into all this:  Captain America. It’s my one disappointment, that’s not actually a disappointment but it is something I missed. The guy barely does anything except have a couple of grand entrances and be his earnest adorable self. (“I am Groot!” “I am Steve Rogers!”) But I trust Marvel. They’re setting us up. Oh God, indeed.

I think the next movie is going to be all about him. My friend pointed out that we don’t have a three-act structure because we’re missing the third act. One of the pivotal lines of the film is Steve’s:  “We don’t trade lives.” That’s a message of the whole film, really:  you don’t get to sacrifice individual lives. The cost is too high. You can’t put a price on it. (That Thanos is the one character who is all, Yup, I’ll sacrifice a life, sure thing! reinforces that he’s the villain.)

Except…except…everyone in the universe gets exactly one life to trade:  their own. We don’t trade lives. Oh Steve.

Marvel is setting us up.