Saturday, May 21, 2005

Without Pie There Is Only Chaos


Can't. Stop. Laughing.

Friday, May 20, 2005

The Dreaded Music Meme

1. The person (or persons) who passed the baton to you.


2. Total volume of music files on your computer.

19 gigs (Yikes!)

3. The title and artist of the last CD you bought.

Louisiana Hayride: Classic Country Radio, Volume 3

4. Song playing at the moment of writing.

"TIN TIN DEO," Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra

5. Five songs you have been listening to of late (or all-time favorites, or particularly personally meaningful songs)

"I Never Picked Cotton," Johnny Cash
"Million Dollar Funeral," Califone
"Divorce Song," Liz Phair
"Tabletop Joe," Tom Waits
"Call You On the Telephone," Sarah Shannon

6. The five victims people to whom you will 'pass the musical baton.'

Apologies in advance:

Hmm . . .

I think I may have an idea for that Spicy Slipstream Stories antho. It came to me in a dream.

Now I have until October to write it.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Some Good News

I just got word that Ideomancer wants my story "Virginie and the Fool," which is pretty much your standard sexy love story between a meteorologist and a hurricane. Woo-hoo!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

For Doug

You've probably heard about the Downing Street Memo
and definitely knew that the invasion of Iraq
was an illegal/imperialist crime justified by
lies. You still might want to take a closer
look at the memo, however. It's just more
proof of what you already know.

Do you know the Downing Street Memo?
brought to you by Quizilla

Take the quiz, and post the results in your blog.

I ♥ George Galloway

This video is why.

Galloway is responding, apparently, to a question from Senator Norm Coleman. Senator Coleman, you may know, was once the mayor of St. Paul, where I grew up. A Democratic mayor, no less. Then he switched parties (he was, incidentally, banned from my then-workplace as a result) and ran for Senator against the late Paul Wellstone. He ran a dirty-as-hell campaign, and after Wellstone was killed in a plane crash he managed to win the Senatorial race. Ever since he's served as something of an attack dog for the higher-ups in the party, frothing at the mouth with ungrounded accusations and inflammatory and misleading remarks. He makes me want to fling epithets, and the fact that I have managed myself from swearing in this entry is a testament to my superhuman restraint. So it's incredibly satisfying to see him get a bit of comeuppance. Norm, you're an ass.


P.S. Greg Saunders has more at Tom Tomorrow's blog.

Ender Redux

The lovely and talented John Kessel (I hope he doesn't mind me calling him that) dropped in to this entry to note that his essay "Creating the Innocent Killer: Ender's Game, Intention, and Morality" is now online. Really, he says it much better than I could. Kessel blurbs the essay as an explanation of "why this novel is not good for your moral and emotional health." I couldn't agree more. One of my deepest reservations about the book is the fact that at the age the book seems targeted for, I was a lonely and alienated young man with a lot of rage against teachers and classmates whom I felt victimized by. In my opinion Ender's Game nurtures and justifies such rage rather than exploring and exorcising it. Kessel talks about all of this, and I came away from the essay feeling even more strongly that the underlying idea of this novel is unhealthy and perhaps even dangerous--the idea that any action, no matter how heinous, is justifiable if it is undertaken by a person who is fundamentally good, acting for the greater good. The problem, of course, is that there are as many definitions of good as there are people. Whose definition takes precedence?

When we discussed the novel in class I was both frustrated and amazed at the positive responses of my fellow Master's students; none of them seemed bothered by Card's moral copouts, and I wasn't up to the task of communicating my misgivings about the book. I wish I'd had this essay to point to then. Check it out.

Notes on Reading

I've finished The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror, Seventeenth Annual Collection (which has an unnacountably low rating at of only two stars; if you read it and liked it, go give it a rave!). Lots of good stuff here, although as always there were a few that didn't grab me. But with stories like "The Fishie" and "The Fluted Girl" and "L'Aquilone du Estrellas (The Kite of Stars)" still swimming around in my head, I came out a big winner.

Even though Gwenda beat me to it, I'm linking here to Jeffrey Ford's Fountain-Award-winning-story, The Annals of Eelin-Ok, now available online. I read it last night, and it's very good.

Also, I have to add to the chorus of folks telling all of you to read Margo Lanagan's Black Juice. I've only read four of the stories thus far, but two of them left me speechless and one had me all a-sniffles. I'm curious which one of these stories will be in this year's Year's Best, because any one of them could be. In fact, I'm off to read another right now.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Karen Joy Fowler Book Club

Working downtown has its advantages. I was able to duck out of here for lunch and walk four blocks to the Border's on State Street, where the lovely and talented Karen Joy Fowler appeared to publicize the paperback version of her wonderful-and-if-you-haven't-read-it-you-need-to-get-on-that-buster* book The Jane Austen Book Club. I was able to chat with Karen for a couple of minutes, trading good news and a bit of bad--she won't be at WisCon this year due to other commitments. Shame, that. Karen sat and chatted with a small group of us about Goldie Hawn, book clubs, blurbs, Jane Austen, and the hidden perks of being a best-seller. Karen is touring for a few more weeks, so check the calendar and see if she's going to be in your area. It'll be time well spent.

*It's in paperback now. You have no excuse.

Epic News

Everybody else is doing it, so I guess it's safe to officially announce that my story "Five Hundred and Forty Doors" will be appearing in the Twenty Epics anthology that David Moles and Susan Marie Groppi are putting together. The way it's shaping up, the best thing about being in this anthology is that I won't have to pay for it,* because the talent they've got lined up so far is pretty awesome. I can't wait to see the full TOC.

*Well, that and the fact that I will have something in an actual book is damn cool as well.

Sunday, May 15, 2005


That's the sound of my head hitting the floor after finding out my story "The Lethe Man," which appeared in Say . . . why aren't we crying?, has received an honorable mention for the Speculative Literature Foundation's Fountain Award. The Fountain's only two years old, but it's prestige is all the greater in my eyes because of the wide net it casts over speculative literature. The part that really makes my head spin, though, is seeing the other names who received honorable mentions: M. Rickert, Kelly Link, John Aegard, Katharine Haake, Douglas Lain, Sonya Taaffe, Katherin Nolte, Rebecca Curtis and Liz Williams. I haven't read all of their stories, but the ones I did read have stuck with me, and it's humbling to be placed in their company by judges as distinguished as Matthew Cheney, Gavin Grant, Patricia McKillip, Vandana Singh, and Alison Smith. So I can say with all sincerity that it's an honor to have been considered.

The winner of the 2004 Fountain is Jeffrey Ford, for his story "The Annals of Eelin-Ok," which appeared in The Faery Reel. I haven't read it yet, but I'll have to track down a copy now.

EDITED because in my stupor I neglected to publicly thank Gwenda Bond and Christopher Rowe for publishing the story. They're doing good work over there at the Fortress of Words, and if you haven't already you need to check it out.