Just a quick note: I’ll be at Penguicon 2018 all this weekend (May 4–6 in Southfield, MI). Here’s a schedule of all the stuff I will do (mostly lit oriented; in gray) and might do (mostly games and movies; in non-gray colors).
I tweeted about this a bit earlier this week, when Google alerted me to the existence of this cryptic (to me) web page, which appears to be a ballot for a “Japanese Nebula Award” with one of my stories in the running for “Best Translated Short Story.”
As it turns out, this is an actual thing, and sort of a big deal. (It’s called the “Seiun Award” in English—and evidently has nothing to do with the SFWA Nebula Award; the Seiun Award is named for Japan’s first SF magazine.)
A quick glance at that Wikipedia entry shows that, if my story should win, I will be the least famous cat to ever get one of these awards—and by a very significant margin. Which is to say, I’m not going to win. Still, it’s fun to be nominated. (Also, how the hell is it that I don’t have a Wikipedia page? This is at least the third page that mentions me and deadlinks my name. The ISFDB, on the other hand, is hitting this out of the park. Well done!)
Anyway, if you’re wondering what all the shouting is about, you can read the story—my first Time Portal tale, “The New Guys Always Work Overtime,” winner of a 2013 Asimov’s Award(!!!)—for just 99 cents.
Three offerings today—and you can get ’em all for less than a Subway sub:
- My most recent novella, There Was a Crooked Man, He Flipped a Crooked House is now available as a standalone ebook. Read the horror tinged “Non-Euclidian architectural petty-crime adventure” that’s racking up kudos and five-star reviews at a humbling clip. (If you want backstory on the story, here’s an interview I did with F&SF about it.)
- Price drop on my novelette “The Traveling Salesman Solution.” A time portal story, and also a grim moral koan. If I’ve ever written a story I think everyone in America should read, it’s this one. For a limited time this lil fella—my first sale to The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction and only true hard-SF tale—is just 99-cents!
- FREEBIE ALERT!!! From now until Monday my time-travel novelette “There Was No Sound of Thunder” is free on Amazon! This is the story that introduced the Parable of Too Many Hitlers. Read the story Locus magazine’s Lois Tilton called “Stoopid” (although, in all fairness, it was also a finalist for that year’s Asimov’s Award so maybe check it out and make the call for yourself?)
I know a goodly portion of you have already read one or more of these stories; all are woeful shy on Amazon/Goodread reviews. If you wanted to swing by and leave your thoughts, it’d be much appreciated. Thanks in advance for helping nudge the wheel!
- There Was a Crooked Man, He Flipped a Crooked House (coming soon?!)
- “The Traveling Salesman Solution“
- “There Was No Sound of Thunder“
…when I go to sum up the story in a Big Picture way, I end up saying the same thing that I said about that election:
I totally hear where folks—angry, aggrieved, not-gonna-take-it-anymore folks—are coming from, because I totally agree with them: They are getting screwed. We just totally disagree on who is screwing them, or what is a sensible way to address that.
This story is about that, in a fundamental way.
I also tell an anecdote about seeing a homeless guy get ejected from a Coney in the mid-1990s, and make mention of Michigan trespassing laws, the sovereign citizen movement, my neighbors from Chennai, and Dave-o’s patented “magpie and junk drawer” speculative-fiction drafting strategy.
The Nov/Dec issue of F&SF is still on newsstands—but only for a few more days. Nab your copy soon!
Found this in a stack of unlabeled 78 rpm records I bought off eBay, like, a billion years ago. No time to lay down a new track this week, so I just digitized this instead. Mysteries within mysteries, etc.
Beats per Week installment number five, with another deep cut from the limited U.S. release of the 1994 film In the Celestial Monastery. Folks will recall this motif—worked much more gradually in the film score as it appeared in theaters—from the long montage in which Sieto and P’u finally begin to find a way to communicate with the Wanderers and their technology.
A lot of the short films Dust releases are 75% solid, then fall apart at the untangle/resolution (often by not having one at all: they have a terrific Setup, then a nice Tangle, then roll credits—grrrrrrrr). But this one holds up nicely. Give it a watch:
I was interviewed by Lisa Haselton for her Reviews and Interviews blog this past summer. This was technically part of the publicity for Expiration Date, but mostly ended up being about other things. I tell a long anecdote about “When I First Knew I Was a Writer” (i.e., “The Most Important Thing I Learned About Writing at 15-years-old”) and “My Most Interesting Writing Quirk”:
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I subvocalize almost constantly. Like, this sentence I’m typing right now, I’m thinking about saying it as I’m typing it. I can feel it on my tongue. It’s the same when I’m reading (and a big part of why I’m such a slow reader). Almost every thought I have is composed as an imagined dialogue with someone. Very little of what I say is spontaneous at all. I guess, for a lot of people, their process of reading/writing as actually fairly divorced from their process of speaking/hearing. For me they’re mashed into a single thing.
A good read, I guess, if you have a deep and persistent interest about what the heck is wrong with me.