Archive for May, 2017

The word had already been circulating, that the printed edition of TOMBS: A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, while still with an official publication date of June 1, was expected to be physically available several days early.  A friend then reported last week that her pe-ordered copy had already arrived from Amazon, and, today, a copy has also come into my hands — that is, on May 30.  So TOMBS is here, and a lovely volume it is too! A cursory look-through indicates the proof corrections I found, at least, have all been corrected.  The book looks delightful.

But also it does remain in a ghost realm of sorts, actually in hand for some but not “officially” actually published, which brings up an interesting opportunity.  Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble, whilc no longer terming them “pre-order” prices as such, are still offering substantial discounts of a tad over a third of the list price off, still available as of today and presumably tomorrow, the 31st of May, as well.  Presumably these will be over by Wednesday, official “official” publishing time, but if you haven’t ordered a copy already — and think that you might — it might pay to check by Amazon or B&N prior to Thursday, by pressing here or here, for a really good deal.  But after that they may go back to the cover price of $14.95, so it’s best that one hurry!

Sunday’s weather belied the predictions of afternoon storms which perhaps helped May’s Bloomington Writers Guild “Last Sunday Poetry Reading & Open Mic,” in conjunction with the Monroe County Convention Center, garner fifteen participants who stayed the whole time.  The featured poets were native Hoosier and Americorps veteran Charles Culp, with poems on such things as diners (“the liquor store closes, the church closes, but the diner’s still open”) and the art available just by looking around one, among other topics, and Virginia native Breon Tyler, a visual artist with a degree in Painting and Printmaking, currently completing a masters here in African American and African Diaspora Studies, who started with a work by a poet from Sierra Leone as well as recent poems of her own  Then after a break, six non-scheduled poets read from the audience, of which I was sixth with three somewhat summer-themed poems (parties, vacations, poolside relaxation) from my VAMPS (A RETROSPECTIVE) collection, “Through This Wicked, Winding Way,” “Why She Started Writing Poetry,” and “Moonlight Swimming.”  Last Sunday Poetry will resume August 27 following a a two-month summer hiatus.

Then a second item, simply for fun on a holiday weekend, or, I don’t usually cover politics here but. . . .  But satire does count as literature and this one is difficult to resist, a “claim” by satirical site THE ONION of having “Obtained Hundreds of Trump Documents” including, well, a number of topics from which one may choose after pressing here.  And for horror fans (thus bringing it under this blog’s purview, ahem) I especially recommend, under “Family,” Melania’s letters home to her mother, particularly the last concerning an apparition seen one night on the White House lawn of. . . . (but be sure to read her other letters first).

Less than a week out from June, and the official release time for TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH grows nigh.  Yesterday gave us what’s probably the last pre-publication interview of me, though I’ll try to have others in the months to come (if not at quite so manic a pace).  But also a first, as of late last night, a review on Goodreads by blogger and author Christine Rains, and five stars to boot!  (Yes, that’s five in a one-to-five system, with five being tops.)  But more to the point, to read it press here.

Yes, we said “Friday night” (see post just below), but the Gehenna & Hinnom Books interview of me on TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH is live now!  Kudos go to Editor/Interviewer C.P. Dunphey for excellent quickness, as well as great questions on origins, ghouls, use of languages, social cultures, and more.  Discover the parts played by whimsy — and guilty pleasures, the influence of Voodoo, and Charlie Chaplin’s “The Little Tramp.”  Pre-TOMBS “history.”  The long, long path to publication by Elder Signs Press and the inspiration of other authors and books going back to 1485 (and worldviews going back far, far, farther than that).  Of keeping one’s place and fun with details. . . .

And so, like a good zombie that just can’t be kept down — not to mention the biggest picture of the book’s cover I’ve seen thus far! — for the “dirt” on TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH be invited to press here.

SF film fans delight, courtesy of INDIEWIRE.COM let us wallow together in “The 25 Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 21st Century, From ‘Children of Men’ to ‘Her’,” by Chris O’Falt, Graham Winfrey, Kate Erbland, and Zack Sharf, and brought to us via TOR.COM and Stubby the Rocket.  With themes that range from love to fear to humanity itself, the best sci-fi movies of the 21st century all share distinctly original visions. . . , begins the rundown, the rest of which can be seen by pressing here.  And the neat thing is, in scrolling down through it, I’ve probably seen at least half myself already (who knew I had such good taste?), and even own films numbers 1 through 4!

Then in other quick news, last night I turned in an interview to C.P. Dunphey of Gehenna & Hinnom Books, with questions designed almost exclusively with TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH in mind.  Yes, launch time for the novel is drawing nigh — but there’s still time to get a one-third off pre-publication discount by pressing here (or, for B&N fans, better yet here).*  But back to the chase, to quote Mr. Dunphey:  These answers are amazing!  For audiences, they will be superb, and for me as a8451b32b-e3c4-41cb-8f3e-7c6834708f13 reader myself, it answered a lot of questions I had as well.  I will post the interview tomorrow night and will send you the link before I post it to any social media.  Very excited for this to be published.  And yes, I know, would that others would be so enthusiastic!

So look Friday night or, one needing one’s sleep, possibly Saturday morning for a fairly long interview mostly confined to TOMBS.  And after June 1st, when the book is out, I understand there may be a review of it too.
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*I understand there should also be an electronic edition of TOMBS, but not quite yet.

Now, about that interview (see May 18 two posts below, April 18) . . . it’s here!  Conducted by blogger Gwendolyn Kiste, this is a fairly straightforward one with mentions both of TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH and my previous book THE TEARS OF ISIS.  And possibly one or two surprises too, like the place football takes in my writing routine.  Or music and differing narrative styles.  Other highlights:  My first ever official fiction sale, and how much did I get?  What are “honorary weekends”?  And, speaking of my writers group (cf. post just below), what of the time the Goth cat Triana added a comment of her own to a member’s story?*

See all this and more by pressing here.
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* And remember, Triana has not been here that long (cf. February 2).

Let us take a quick trip down memory lane to April 25 and my coverage of the Polish mermaid film THE LURE, a Goth-rock variant of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid.”  Then, back to today, what should I run across courtesy of DIRGEMAG.COM but “Dark Mermaids Take Everything Men Fear and Use It Against Them” by Brenda S G Walter, including her take on “The Little Mermaid” as well as THE LURE and two other films.  In this case the “lure” (sorry) is primarily via the Andersen tale — no dwelling on mermaids’ alter lives in the siren trade, for instance, but then the payoff is still the same.  These are hungry fish-ladies.  And, music or not, the piece is interesting (and a little Freudian) and can be read by pressing here.

Then, for the writing life, Saturday after my writers critique group eviscerated my TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH essays (cf. May 18 just below, et al., and no, they didn’t really — I did post all three essays to the group in lieu of a story this month, for which comments, while mixed as to which one might be a given critiquer’s favorite, were generally encouraging), I continued to local restaurant-bar The Crazy Horse for a celebration and signing for Bloomington Writers Guild member and poet Nancy Chen Long’s just published book, LIGHT INTO BODIES.  To lazily quote from the invitation:  This event is a thanks-giving.  As a way of honoring, Nancy has invited Cynthia Bretheim and Beth Lodge-Rigal, two women that she credits for getting her back into poetry back in 2006, to read.  Members of Five Women Poets, a local writing group that Nancy belongs to, will also read.  In addition, two friends whose artistic-ness inspire her — Matt Allen on jazz guitar and Stephen Simms on bass — have been invited to share their music.  It also was fun, and with good snacks too, and a special feeling of kinship for me on the eve, as it were, of my own book’s release which, if not an absolute first as such, is my first novel.
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More on Nancy’s book, officially published on May 10, can be found by pressing here; more on my TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH by pressing its picture in the center column.

And here it is, the third of my TOMBS-related essays in Heidi Angell’s AN ANGELL’S LIFE OF BOOKISH GOODNESS.  This one is titled “The Ghoul-Poet” and has to do in part with the division of TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH into sections based on what’s sometimes called “Five-Act Dramatic Structure,” the structure of classical plays like those of Shakespeare.  Well, that sounds pretty fancy, but then what’s a ghoul doing being a poet?  “The Ghoul-Poet” joins my previous guest posts “It Began With a Map” on March 30 and “What’s a Novel-In-Stories?” on February 9, concerning, respectively, building the world of the “Tombs” and the reasons for choosing a mosaic, or novel-in-stories format for its presentation.

So, okay, then what is a ghoul doing being a poet?  To find out, press here.  Also there are links in the essay to my first guest post, on mosaic novels, and a month before that, on January 9, Heidi’s original interview of me, as well as to Amazon’s page on TOMBS where, at least as of this writing, a bargain $9.95 pre-order price is still being offered*.  (For the second essay, however, you’ll have to scroll down to March 30 and use the link there.)

Then a quick, somewhat related note:  TEARS, TOMBS, and contributions by the Goth cat Triana?  And what about the influence of music?  Yes, an all new interview of me is in the offing, this one conducted by Gwendolyn Kiste (cf. April 18), and has now been officially scheduled for this coming Monday, May 22.  This will be part of a series of interviews I’ve given this year (cf. April 7, March 13, January 10) leading up to next month and the June 1  release date for TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH.  So, sure, the purpose is commercial too, but there still should lurk a few fun facts (or so one might hope) about me.

See you all Monday?

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*Or one can always just press TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH’s picture in the center column.

So came the announcement from Editor/Publisher Juliana Rew:  It’s hard to believe that summer’s almost here. And so is the new anthology, CAT’S BREAKFAST:  TRIBUTE TO KURT VONNEGUT.  A double issue, it contains 30  all-original  science fiction and fantasy short stories inspired by the wit and wisdom of  the late Mr. Vonnegut, releasing on June 15.

An international group of new and established contributors to “Cat’s Breakfast” makes this a remarkable and varied collection that is sure to please fans of science fiction/fantasy, humor, and horror.  The ebook’s available for pre-order on Amazon, and print books will follow shortly.

And so here it is, the lineup including my “Dead Girls, Dying Girls” (see April 27), a tale of a modern young lady . . . and bears . . .  originally published in Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing’s own tribute anthology, SO IT GOES, in 2013.  While as for that ebook pre-order and other info, one need but press here.

Contents

Spooky Action by David A. Kilman
They Grow Up So Fast by Konstantine Paradias
The Jim-Aaargh School of Philosophy by Rati Mehrotra
Command Decision by James Beamon
Hear by Tim Jeffreys
Honour Killing by Iain Hamilton McKinven
Talk to the Animals by Jill Hand
The Pigeon Drop by Gregg Chamberlain
Formica Joe by Anne E. Johnson
One Is One by Vaughan Stanger
Emerging Grammars by Christopher Mark Rose
Picnic, with Xels by Keyan Bowes
Scenes from a Post-Scarcity, Post-Death Society by Peter Hagelslag
The Static Fall to a Standing Walk by Jason Lairamore
Beyond the Borders of Boredom by Ville Nummenpää
Snakes and Ladders by Rekha Valliappan
Drop Dead Date by August Marion
Monkeyline by Jonathan Shipley
Quality Testing by S. E. Foley
Dead Girls, Dying Girls by James Dorr
The Bringers by John J. Kennedy
The Confrontation Station by Ryan Dull
The Edge of Toska by Veronica Moyer
Violadors on the Run by Corrie Parrish
37 by Dan Koboldt
The Losers’ Crusade by Neil James Hudson

Grins and Gurgles (Flash Humor):

Cyborg Shark Battle (Season 4, O’ahu Frenzy) by Benjamin C. Kinney
Strange Stars by Laurence Raphael Brothers
iPhone 17,000 by E. E. King
The Service Call by Edward Ahern

Then in other info, it’s one of those signs of spring becoming summer, and one of those little things sometimes buried under other activity, but the 2017 RHYSLING ANTHOLOGY(cf. April 19, 2, March 29, et al.) made a safe landing here in last Saturday’s mail.  This is the collection of award nominees in the Science Fiction and Poetry Association’s annual Rhysling Competition, in which my prize fight poem “Godzilla vs. King Kong” appears in the Short Poem division (cf. March 29, February 22).

More information on the Rhysling Awards and the SFPA may be found here.

Well, sort of, kind of, maybe in the ballpark, but science fiction writers and fans be alert.  More possibly Earthlike, possibly life-friendly planets, or at least their discovery,  may be on the way according to Tom Ward in “Our View of the Cosmos Is About to Get a Tremendous Upgrade” on FUTURISM.COM, courtesy of Steph P. Bianchini and THE EARTHIAN HIVEMIND.  If curious, press here.  And, if even curiouser (okay, so I’ve watched a couple of ALICE IN WONDERLAND movies lately — warning:  avoid the Johnny Depp version of ALICE THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS if you possibly can), for some background via THE EARTHIAN HIVEMIND itself, check into “Exoplanet Update — Where Are We Now?” by pressing here.




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