Kelly bought herself a Kindle not long ago, and one of the first things I learned as a result is that a Kindle account comes with the assumption that you may have more than one e-reader in the house. If one or two of those happen to be, say, an iTouch, there are unexpected benefits. For example, once I’d downloaded the Kindle ap, either of us could buy a book and then we could both read it at the same time.
I’d have thought reading on the iTouch screen wouldn’t be all that appealing, but I gave it a try, and absolutely ripped through the latest Connie Willis book. Was it the novelty, or do I really like reading this way? I’ve bought a history book, Bloody Crimes, to put it to the test. So far, I’m halfway through.
It is also nifty knowing that, what with the Kindle version of Indigo Springs being out, I can essentially carry a copy of my book with me everywhere I go.
On a completely different and more toobalicious note, my Quantum Leap rewatch of “Catch a Falling Star” went up on Tor.com last week.
My contributor’s copies of Filled with Glee have arrived, and they look very fine indeed, packed with interesting articles like “You think this is hard? Try being an Antagonist, That’s Hard!” by Jennifer Crusie, (Quote: “Aristotle would have loved Sue Sylvester”), “Musical Promiscuity” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch, and Diane Shipley’s “Not Just a River in Egypt.”
Editor Leah Wilson’s introduction is here: it’s all about the brilliant imperfections of the show, and how it rises above them.
And, of course, I’m in it too, with “Who’s the Real LIMA Loser? The Curious Friendship of Finn Hudson and Noah Puckerman,” in which I say, among other things:
Cheating, lying, and competing for the affections of women are all ancient human behaviors, of course, and if he were called upon to explain himself, it seems more than likely that Puck would say he was letting his groin make his choices for him. But on Glee, nothing is ever so simple. Fans of Puck’s bad-boy mystique have to ask whether poor impulse control is the whole story.
If you’d like a chance to Gleek out more than once a week, check it out. All articles should be entirely spoiler-free for S2, as the deadline for the book was just after the S1 finale. Enjoy!
Little bits of me are scattered across the internet: SF Signal asked a number of SF writers to put together a dream anthology, and I went with a series of my favorite time travel and alternate history stories, here at SF Mind Meld. Meanwhile, Tor has the goods on my second Quantum Leap rewatch, “Double Identity.”
Moving on to flesh and blood appearances, here’s my tentative Orycon schedule:
Sat Nov 13 11:00:am Reading
1:00:pm The unique challenges of urban fantasy
Increasingly, stories are being placed in modern times or locales but with fantasy elements to them. Whether it is wizards in Walla Walla or vampires in Vancouver, how does one effectively blend these very different elements? Alternatively, what are some examples of how NOT to accomplish this?
Sat Nov 13 3:00:pm Afternoon Autograph session
Sat Nov 13 5:00:pm To Outline or Not to Outline, that is the question
Some authors were taught to draw up outlines of their entire story arc before fleshing out their writing. Others have developed different methods which serve them well. Experienced authors discuss what works for them, when, and perhaps, why.
Sun Nov 14 2:00:pm Turtle or Bunny: Does writing speed matter?
Should anyone care about writing speed? Where should writers spend their time? Are fast writers always hacks? When to spend a lot of time editing, when to write ‘raw,’ when to slow down and when to speed up, and why.
This morning I, along with the rest of my beloved Out in Harmony choir peeps, can be found bright and early at the Vancouver incarnation of the Walk for Life. This is a fundraiser, whose proceeds go to direct programs and services for Canadians living with HIV/AIDS in their communities. It is also an annual outreach for us, but due to route changes on the walk, we will be singing as the participants all head out, as opposed to midway through the route.
I want to wish all the walkers good weather and a pleasant time… and to note that if you meant to sponsor someone and didn’t get a chance, you can still do so directly on their site. Or hey, come on down and we’ll sing as you write ’em a cheque!
Last Saturday Kelly and I climbed out of bed at the appalling-to-most hour of five in the morning and vroomed via rental car to Seattle for the Locus Awards. It was a leisurely drive; we stopped at the Rustic Cafe in Fairhaven because I remembered they had tasty, small biscotti. Wireless, too! Alas, the coffee was only so-so. We hit a Fred Meyer for Luna Bars and still reached the hotel, a Marriott of some order or another, in time for the first panel at ten.
This was my first Locus Awards, and I gather they used to be quite small affairs, but what they have evolved into lately is a delightfully intimate little one-day con. The vibe was World Fantasy-esque, very pleasant and low key, with lots of shop talk. The first panel was about research and had Connie Willis, Walter John Williams, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Nancy Kress on it; the second was called “Ten Mistakes a Writer Should Not Make” and featured editors Gardner Dozois, Eileen Gunn, Beth Meacham and Jeremy Lassen. Both were moderated by Gary K. Wolfe, who reviews for the mag (as I myself did at one time, actually. It seems like a long time ago, now.)
Ursula K. Le Guin, pondering research:
There was an autograph session and then the awards banquet itself. I always enjoy it when Connie Willis hosts, and she was hilarious as usual… except, of course, when talking about Charles Brown being gone. This was the first awards ceremony since he’s died; it hadn’t sunk in, really. Ouch.
I saw so many people. Some I’ve known for years, some I know slightly (and now know better) and, of course, people I consider friends whom I’ve only ever met online. I tried to tell calendula-witch I was sure we’d hung out, only to realize I had seen her pic, many times, on Jay’s blog. I got to have a nice long convo with Michael Bishop, who reprinted my “Cooking Creole” last year in Passing for Human; we’d met before, but only glancingly. I hereby nominate him for the Best Smile in the History of Ever Award:
There was some precious stolen time with Nicola Griffith and Kelley Eskridge, and a few minutes with Eileen Gunn. I got to tell Nancy Kress, who I’ve long admired, what it’s like to teach “To Cuddle Amy” in my UCLA class “Creating Universes, Building Worlds.”
Two big highlights were meeting some of the folks from this year’s Clarion West class, who were in attendance after a week with Michael. They’re keen, bright-eyed, engaged, visibly bonded and entirely adorable! Second, Kelly and I lured Maureen McHugh out to a slow, pleasant and thoroughly delicious meal at Serafina.
Maureen is close to Snuffy. I’ve read her blog, off and on, for years. I reviewed Mission Child for SciFi, back when it first came out in hardcover, and we’ve Tweeted at each other once or twice. When we invited her out my thoughts, essentially, were: Look! Fellow writer! Who knows Snuffy and seems really nice! And then we were sitting by Lake Union, taking in the sun and the boats while waiting for the restaurant to open, and it sank in: by the holy Bleeding Elvis, I am out for dinner with the author of China Mountain Zhang! I’m so a fan of hers! Even though I was too tired and hungry to make sense of the Serafina menu, or to count to four on my fingers, I knew bits of trivia about her life and family, and babbled worshipfully about the dirt on the Mission Child planet. (No, seriously. Extremely cool dirt.) And she didn’t even run screaming into the day yelling, “Eeek, stalker!”
We get to hang with our gods in this subculture; it’s so gratifying.