Boskone

Feb. 18th, 2013 11:49 am
akashiver: (avatar)
On my way back from Boskone where, yes, I had a lovely time. [livejournal.com profile] matociquala introduced me and Fran Wilde to "Drink," a bartender's bar in which they make pale fruity things called Bohemians, which I'll be hankering after for a long time. Other things I'll be hankering after for a while included the Boskone art show, which had some of the strongest pieces I've seen so far at cons. But alas, the budget would not let me buy.

I didn't end up attending that many panels, but those I did proved interesting. Jim Kelly gave an intriguing talk on the Virtual Utopia, which gave me some ideas for my upcoming lecture on The Matrix. And the "gamechanger" panel added to my reading list, as I knew it would. Other than that, I mainly hung out in the lobby and caught up with familiar faces, including some of the ICFA brigade and [livejournal.com profile] mindstalk, who I had yet to meet in his new Boston habitat.

On Sunday we were kidnapped by James D. Macdonald and Debra Doyle and taken indoor skydiving, which is, btw, AWESOME, and does not come with the same terrifying quantity of space and ground found in the other kind of skydiving. I thoroughly approve.

My observations re: indoor skydiving are limited to the fact that a) it's harder than it looks and b) I'd like to do it again. Actually, I'll add that the thing that constantly surprises me about skydiving is the nothing-beneath-you part. The hindpart of my brain equates flying with swimming, but there's a significant difference between feeling yourself supported by water and the what-the-hell-is-THAT sensation of being supported by wind. Wind's much less stable, and it's also full of light and noise and NOTHING, and to someone who's a confident swimmer, it's very odd.

Now: back to work.
akashiver: (Default)
First of all, thanks for all your suggestions re: dystopian fiction/tv shows. I haven't heard yet if the course has been approved, but it seems likely that it will be.

I'm excited about this course: it would be my first large lecture course, AND it's a new genre course for me to design. Both of the Brit lit classes I'm teaching this semester are versions of courses I've taught before. Work-load-wise this is a good thing - a lot of prep time is saved - but, masochistically, I miss the frenetic joys and anxieties of a new syllabus.
akashiver: (People who read too much!)
The Nebulas were in DC this year. I dutifully trooped over to view them with the intrepid [livejournal.com profile] oktober_ghost and the ever-chipper Fran Wilde. Beth and I even managed to catch a glimpse of that ever elusive species of CW alumni, William T. Vandermark. Barring one CW alum, I have now managed to collect the whole set!

I hadn't been to the Nebulas before, and it was an interesting mix of familiar and new faces. I managed to sit down with the fabulous Mike and Rachel Swirksy, the engaging E. Lily Yu, the somewhat suspicious Andy Duncan and the always troublesome James Patrick Kelly. I learned interesting things about radio from [livejournal.com profile] jfreund and Meagen Voss. I admired the thin orange tie of the ever-stylish John Kessel and the clattery shoes of death worn by the brave prom-goers sharing our hotel. And, as always, I left with a long list of Yet More Things to Read.

But in the meantime: the very deserving winners of the Nebulas have been announced. Good reads all. I'm particularly fond of Jo Walton's amazing Among Others, which seems poised to sweep many of the SF awards this year, but I'm thoroughly fond of all the nominated works I read. I have to make special mention of Genevieve Valentine's astonishing debut, Mechanique: A Tale of the Circus Tresaulti, which I thought was just beautiful.
akashiver: (Default)
So I found out about Fabio Fernandes's new anthology project, Future Fire, via the Locus discussion group. Here’s a description of his project:

We are still at war in many places around the world, but something is a-changing: the socialist Second World has ended almost 25 years ago, and the First World and the Third World are, if not changing places, suffering major alterations in their structure. I think it’s past time we discuss that in our fiction, and what fiction suits best the discussion of the zeitgeist, our times and the times to come, than science fiction?

We are raising funds to publish a special issue/anthology of colonialism-themed speculative fiction from outside the first-world viewpoint, co-edited by Fabio Fernandes and published by The Future Fire.


If you'd like to donate to make this anthology a reality you can do so through Peerbacker. It's a great cause and has the makings of a great anthology.

Update!

Feb. 26th, 2012 10:11 am
akashiver: (Default)
I'm finally de-poisoned and de-crankified enough to write an update. Hurray!

First #1:

I finally caved and joined SFWA. Since then I've been reading a lot of excellent fiction, some of which has made the Nebula ballot. Congrats to all the nominees!

But before I start raving about some of the nominated fiction (a future post), I  wanted to mention some short stories that I  thought were wonderful but which didn't make the Nebula list. Vylar Kaftan's Hero-Mother (the costs of an alien culture's attempt to control reproduction), James Allen Gardner's clever nightmare Three Damanations, and Genevieve Valentine's evocative fantasy The Sandal-Bride are all terrific and worth a read.

First #2:

I passed the strength test and climbed into the tall ship rigging for the first time. This is the sort of stupid thing writers do. I'm afraid of heights and climbing up some giant dangerous swinging ropey thing holds little appeal in and of itself. But damnit, I can't work on a tall ship and not know what it feels like to go into the rigging.

So up I went. And for the record, it feels like UTTER TERROR. Which I'm hoping wears off with practice and better footwear, because a climber needs to be able to do more than cling, huddle, and meep. 
climbing rigging )

Eh. That's it for now. More adventures of a cowardly climber at some future point.
akashiver: (blog)
A few weeks ago I had a very fun conversation with Austin Sirkin and Karen Burnham about academia, SF, ICFA, steampunk, and teenage dystopias. Locus posted a podcast of it here: Siobhan Carroll and Austin Sirkin in Conversation. For posterity, and beyond!
akashiver: (Default)
Fellow CW alum DJ Muir has a new story out at Strange Horizons. I have fond memories of The Fourth Board from workshop and I'm excited to see it in print:

akashiver: (Default)
While in Britain, I participated in Locus's roundtable on N.K. Jemisin, and had the pleasure of reading Jeffrey Ford, Maureen Kincaid Speller, and Rachel Swirsky's thoughtful analysis of Jemisin's work so far. I'm glad to see that the universe has responded to our well-wishing by rewarding The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms with a well-deserved Locus award for Best First Novel.
akashiver: (write)
I've been remiss in sharing publishing news. Or rather, being a cautious person, I've been waiting until things are actually published to declare that they're coming out. I gather from friends that this is a Silly Thing To Do.

So, I'm pleased to say that  "The Strange Case of Madeleine H. Marsh (Aged 14 1/4)" will soon be in bookstores as part of Realms of Fantasy's April issue. My fellow CW classmate Randy Henderson (aka [livejournal.com profile] quantumage) also has a story forthcoming in this issue, which RoF is devoting to Dark Fantasy.

Lois Tilton has already reviewed the issue over at Locus and declares "Strange Case"  "clever and entertaining humor in the tone of teenaged angst." 

I also made some sales last week: I'm happy to say that "In the Gardens of the Night" (aka the concubine story) will be appearing in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, while my anti-Twilight story "Remains" will be forthcoming in AE: The Canadian Science Fiction Review. Both of these are first-time markets for me, so I'm excited to be working with them.

Finally my poem, "Birthing Monsters," is forthcoming from Basement Stories. It's been a while since I've written any poetry, and this one is dear to my heart. I'm looking forward to its release into the wild world of the web.

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