BookBar Event tomorrow

June 17, 2019

Hey all — Tomorrow, Tuesday, June 18 at 7 pm I’ll be at the BookBar in Denver, in conversation with Sarah Gailey about their new novel Magic for LiarsClick on the link for more info.  See you there?

 

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This is your last chance to sign up for my online workshop on writing superheroes, which happens tomorrow!

And on that note, while I’m mostly indifferent to Dark Phoenix, didn’t go see it, and think McAvoy and Fassbender deserved better because I like their takes on Professor X and Magneto, I am secretly pleased that the studio execs on this film can’t go around claiming it flopped because “people just don’t like superhero movies featuring women.”

 

 

a few reminders

June 12, 2019

Here’s a new interview with me up at the official Wild Cards website.

I’m teaching a class on writing superhero fiction this Saturday. Still time to sign up!

And here’s the spiffy hat I got at the convention:

You remember that Godzilla cartoon in the 80’s where our heroes had a little button they could use to summon Godzilla whenever they needed some extra big help with a problem? It’s like that. With some G.I. Joe mixed in.

Which means I loved it!!!  So silly! So great! So perfect!

Seriously, there’s a great deal of joy in seeing a movie that knows exactly what it needs to do and delivers exactly what it promises. Which is giant monsters doing battle with each other and destroying cities. Seriously though, I’m not sure how they did it, but the monsters manage to evoke the ridiculousness and awesomeness of the old rubber suit versions while depicting them with hyper-realistic CGI. Rodan in particular seemed like a CGI of a rubber suit version. I know that makes no sense, but we got the best of both worlds, and it was excellent. The twins who always show up with Mothra? I kept waiting to see if they would show up — and the film knew I was going to be waiting for them to show up.  And then they showed up, in kind a of a subtle (I know, right?!) side nod, and it was perfect!

Now this is the part that’s really going to shock you:

There’s a storyline in this that I wish I had come up with first. I’m actually kind of a little bit mad that I didn’t write this first, but I’m also really happy to have seen it on the big screen. Along with giant monsters beating up on each other, this is the story of Maddie, who discovers her mother is a supervillain, and then has to decide what she’s going to do about it. Millie Bobby Brown of Stranger Things is Maddie and she’s great, fierce and full of wonder and determination.

I wish I had written that story.

 

So the thing about Robin Hood is there are dozens and dozens of versions of the story going back 700 years, and new bits and pieces to it are added all the time, and the earliest stories aren’t really anchored in any historical moment. Then when you do try to anchor it history, it turns out all those bits and pieces that got added over the course of 700 years don’t really fit.

This is why every Robin Hood novel has a long author’s note explaining — defending, justifying, whatever — the decisions the author made about what bits to keep and what to leave out. (Seriously, “Author’s Notes in Robin Hood Novels” is almost its own genre.) They usually talk about longbows and whether or how much they were really being used at the time of Prince John.

But here’s a bit I’ve never really seen anyone discuss before:  Friar Tuck cannot exist at the time of Prince John. “Friar” as a title refers specifically to Franciscan and Dominican monks. Turns out, Franciscans and Dominicans didn’t reach England until after 1220 — four years after King John’s death.

I mean, it’s a tiny little thing, we can call him “Brother Tuck” and make him a Benedictine and that works just fine.  But who knew?

I can just tell I’m going to be getting really judgey about Robin Hood stories after all this research.

 

I had a big report planned for Denver Pop Culture Con, but Lily dislocated her hip getting out of the car on the way home so I’ve been playing nurse for the last two days and I’m a bit drained. I think she’ll be okay, she’s on bed rest and a ton of meds. I’m glad she only weighs 16 pounds.

I splurged and got myself an amazing hat. Maybe I’ll post some pictures.

I had a lot of face time with friends I don’t see very often and that made me happy.

I had one moment where I was watching all the kids and cosplayers running around filled with joy and I started crying because I really could have used this world when I was 12 but it didn’t exist then. My poor isolated preteen self had no idea what was in store.

And an announcement:  Wastelands: The New Apocalypse is a new anthology out from John Joseph Adams, and it reprints my story “Where Would You Be Now.”

And now back to the word mines…

 

quick post

May 30, 2019

I’ve had my head down trying to finish up some things by the end of the month. A hint:  prepping the webinar on writing superheroes I’ll be doing next month; reviewing copyedits on the Rick collection I’m working on, including a brand-new novella (yes, there’s a whole new Rick story in the works, about his time in Santa Fe in the mid 1800’s. We haven’t officially announced it yet, it’s super secret. Shhhh.); and finishing the first draft of a Cormac & Amelia novella. I’m hoping to have that one out as an e-book by this fall. Fingers crossed.

And this weekend I’m at Denver Pop Culture Con.

I need to do a post on career planning and how all my attempts at career planning have blown up spectacularly, in both good ways and not. But mostly good. Short version:  flipping the table often works.

Meanwhile, back to prepping for the con.