Brisbane!

Fri 28 Aug 2015 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , , , , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

Lede not buried! See: Kelly will be doing these things and I will be doing these things.

Brissy: is where we are headed. Near the Great Barrier Reef is where we were. (Photos: um, maybe when my camera and laptop start talking again.) Melbourne: where we are for Kelly to do Melbourne Writers Fest stuff. Also: Melbourne has a Burmese restaurant and a zine store.

Here’s Kelly’s sched. in Brisbane:

Kelly-BWF

and mine:

Gavin BWF



Sweden and being offline

Mon 1 Oct 2012 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , , | 2 Comments| Posted by: Gavin

Tomorrow we’re off to Uppsala in Sweden to Kontrast where Kelly’s one of the guests of honor along with Joe Abercrombie and Peter Watts. Can’t wait! Kelly’s collection, Pretty Monsters, has just come out there (in two volumes, sort of the same way it was done in Australia) and we are going to get to meet her translator, Ia Lind, as well as the lovely folks at X Publishing . . . and then there is the con: so far, so good on that front. They’ve been wonderfully communicative and helpful with our odd requests (beer! chocolate! carseats!). Besides the Glasgow Worldcon in 2005 it will be our first Eurocon.

You can check out programming here and I’ve pasted our schedule below. I’m mostly on childcare but I do get to talk about the Death of Science Fiction (ok, “Science fiction and the future”) on Saturday. Ideas for that panel are most welcome! Kelly will probably do a workshop (always her first love), too.

After Sweden we’re going to visit family in Den Haag (yay!) so we will be mostly offline for a bit. Although that doesn’t ever really work anymore, does it?

KELLY LINK

Friday
19:00 Short opening ceremony followed by signing

Saturday
13:00 The short story and the ideas panel
17:00 Writing and research panel
19:00 What has steampunk got to say about us? panel

Sunday
13:00 GoH interview
16:00 Closing ceremony

GAVIN J. GRANT

Saturday
11:00 Science fiction and the future



Back

Tue 31 Jul 2012 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , , , , , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

Dancing in the trees

We’re back in the office after 2+ weeks away. Yay! Yesterday we flew back from Seattle: today I feel like the sludge left at the bottom of a cup of cowboy coffee. Did we miss anything? (Yes.)

There is a stack of mail, a box of packages, tons of orders (thank you!), many emails, a few phone messages, a sad lack of telegraphs, one beeping box (a toy!), and a number of deadlines looooming.

Before leaving, we were at Readercon for a couple of days and we owe many thanks to Jedediah Berry and the et al awesome people who ran our table when we left. We were offline the last few days so missed Readercon’s craptacular response to the craptacular behaviour spotlighed by Genevieve Valentine so we just signed Veronica’s petition. (I am not sure if the BoD should stand down, but only because I want to make sure the convention survives. If the Board stands down and new directors are elected [is that how it works?], then that’s great.) But over all, blech. And kudos to Genevieve for posting about her experience. Thank you for helping everyone by doing that.

Also, Elizabeth Hand (“Near Zennor”), Kelly (“The Summer People”), and Maureen F. McHugh (After the Apocalypse) won Shirley Jackson Awards. (And, I have the nominee rock to send to Joan Aiken’s estate’s agent!). Wish we had been there.

At Clarion, with cup of tea

After Readercon, we went to Seattle to teach week 5 at Clarion West. This is a heads-up to editors and publishers everywhere*:  the 2012 Clarion West class are coming for you! They are in a white hot heat of creation, revision, and submission, and you will be hearing from them soon. Wow, that was a week. The worst part about it was leaving on Saturday. We wanted to stay!

We owe huge thanks to the Clarion West organization for all their work and accommodations. We traveled as a party of four, Kelly, me, our daughter Ursula and Kelly’s mom, Annie (without whom it would not have been possible, so thanks to Annie, too) and the CW people didn’t blink. They put us up, they put up with us, they ferried us around (even acquiring car seats when needed!) to parties and more. Every time I’ve seen Clarion West in operation I’m impressed. (The 2013 instructors have been announced.) Also thanks to Nicole Kimberling (publisher of Blind Eye Books and LCRW food columnist) who visited the Clarion class and Eileen Gunn & John Berry and Greg Bear for wonderful parties. (I grew up reading Greg Bear but was able to speak 2-3 coherent sentences to him without my head exploding. Phew.)

Then we went to Portland (hello Powell’s and Reading Frenzy) and Vancouver (hello Naam!), both of which were lovely (and occasionally terrifying—eek!). While post-Clarion braindead in Vancouver we almost watched a movie in the hotel . . . but it was $15.99. Um. Internet was expensive and so avoided. Do people really pay prices like that?

Travel back was ok except that we would like to unthank the bridge that got stuck in the upright position meaning we had to drive from Vancouver to Seattle instead of take the lovely train. Bad bridge, bad! (Loved the train otherwise.) And: United Airlines has the smallest seats in the world. Boo! Also: on the way out they lost our stroller and we did not get it back for a whole week. Ever really missed something? We missed that stroller! I even tried tweeting United but I got no response. Oh well!

And now we are back in body if not in spirit. Emails will be returned soon-ish.

* I think every Clarion instructor always wants to send out this heads up but since this is the first time I have officially been one of the instructors I am adding my voice to the masses of other instructors.



Molly Gloss in Cambridge

Thu 15 Jan 2009 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

If all goes well we’ll be at Molly Gloss’s reading at Porter Square Books in Cambridge, MA, at 7 PM tonight. (But it’s snowing and there are always complications, so who knows!)

Molly is a fabulous writer, one of Kelly’s favorites. Her latest book, The Hearts of Horses, just came out in paperback. Her previous novel, Wild Life, is a great northwestern read (don’t read the flap copy, just read the book) and won the Tiptree Award and was one of the first books to be chosen for those This City Reads This Book programs. Molly is a great reader and lovely person, so it will be delightful to catch up and to hear her read.



catch all

Tue 30 Dec 2008 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , , , , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

It’s pre-tax madness around here. Who didn’t make those estimated payments? Oops. Ok, must go fix that now. In the meantime, these:



Back

Thu 21 Aug 2008 - Filed under: Not a Journal., | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

We’re back in the office after a bit of a wander around Scotland. Lots of stuff (stuff? vocabulary hasn’t improved any) happening with books and so on. (Is there a so on or is it only books? Don’t know.) Listening to an interview with John Kessel (more on that soon) and trying to catch up on all that stuff.

Scotland: nice and cool. Tea all the time. Breakfast can be a challenge! Everyone plays Wii games better than us. We had tea (see) with Alasdair Gray(!) and met up with a few of the Glasgow mafia (of the writing sort) in a pub with the best haggis in Scotland (or so said the writing on the wall). The Olympics were easier to watch (it’s UK-centric, but much less insipid and sentimental). The beer isn’t as good as in England (if you like bitter), but there were a few good ones, including Atlas Brewery’s in Kinlochleven—which we walked past while on the West Highland Way. Nothing like a local beer after a 10-mile walk. 100s of pics were taken, some may be uploaded later.

One of the things (the many things) we forgot to bring over were pedometers which would have been fun over that week. Should you ever be tempted to go on the walk, remember to check your jacket (zipped into its own pocket) is still carabinered onto your pack before you start up from lunch. Especially if this is a borrowed North Face jacket. Oops! If anyone found said jacket between Kinlochleven and Kingshouse, we’d love to hear from you.

Poverty Castle CoverOh well. It meant a trip to the shops (and the Marks and Sparks food section…) where we went to Zavvi (previously known as Virgin before a management buyout—just as Small Beer Press will be known as Lost the Plot Press after a similar buyout here) where we picked up the first season of The IT Crowd which seems simple but funny enough.

Read fewer books than might be expected (maybe all that walking and sleeping) but very much enjoyed Robin Jenkins’s Poverty Castle which seemed to be Jenkins (perhaps best known for his dark and amazing The Cone-gatherers) in his lightest mood. There are echoes of Compton Mackenzie’s entertainments (Monarch of the Glen, Whiskey Galore, etc.), as well as of Georgette Heyer, and even a light metafictional concept (we see the writer who is writing this story) in the set up: a family (husband, wife, 5 daughters) are suddenly enriched by the death of a faraway uncle. They decide to buy and restore an old house in Argyll and from there their story intermingles with their neighbors (an old aristo family), the villagers, and one of the daughter’s roommates at Glasgow University. The class observations of 1950s and ’60s Scottish life are acute, the characters—even if sometimes over the top—are rich. All in all a great escape, even if Jenkins cannot quite stick to his optimistic guns.



Clarion South applications

Sat 28 Jun 2008 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

The image “http://www.clarionsouth.org/images/img_CSlogo.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.Robert Hoge—one of the extraordinary team of organizers (and a World Fantasy Award judge this year, poor guy!)—reminds us that the deadline for applications to the Clarion South Writers Workshop is June 30 (Monday!). This is the 2009 tutor line up:

Can’t wait to go back to Brisbane! Maybe see you there?



Amtrak question

Tue 18 Mar 2008 - Filed under: Not a Journal., | 7 Comments| Posted by: Gavin

OK, so is there an arm of Amtrak (the Amtrak Foundation?) or Rail Canada which gives grants to writers (or, er, indie presses) who want to, just to pick a wild example out the air (or, more appropriately if less of an actual fit, off the land), for instance take the train across the USA, up to Vancouver, and then across to Calgary. (Or at least to Edmonton, since Calgary doesn’t seem to have a train connection.)

It would be great publicity for the train companies….



Sat 1 Sep 2007 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

Japan: awesome! Yokohama: great place for a convention! Hugo Awards pre- and post-reception: yummm!

And now this:



Sat 1 Sep 2007 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | 3 Comments| Posted by: Gavin

Japan: awesome! Yokohama: great place for a convention! Hugo Awards pre- and post-reception: yummm!

And now this:



Sat 25 Aug 2007 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

We are in Tokyo! Arrived via Northwest. Flight ok—tiny seats but at least they serve up all the bad movies you want on your tiny screen (Namastey London isn’t bad: it had the proper amount of cheesy pop and fun dancing).

マジック・フォー・ビギナーズWe were met at the airport by Kelly’s editor at Hayakawa, Naoki Shimizu, who very kindly accompanied us all the way to our hotel (the amazing Hotel Grand Palace). He also gave Kelly a copy of the new hardcover Japanese edition of Magic for Beginners—which has a lovely painting of a telephone box on the cover, a review in the Nikkei paper, and her schedule (Tues/Wed: busy!)

How sensible it seemed that there are regularly scheduled buses from the airport to all the big hotels. We picked up a rental cell phone at the airport, maybe we ate something, but mostly what we did was wonder why we were awake until, happily, we were not.

Now it is Saturday evening. We started out the day with the fabby Japanese breakfast at the hotel (rice/rice porridge, miso soup, poached eggs, pot of green tea, some fishy and meaty bits for those that like that sort of thing) then made a quick trip out doors. It is melty: hot and humid. So it was a slow trip around a few blocks then to Lawson to see how the onigiri had progressed in the last 10 years. (Still tasty!) Lucky we got those snacks, because Mari Kotani had arranged for us to see the Takarazuka Revue. We were originally meant to go on Tuesday with Eileen Gunn and others but Kelly has interviews all day so we were thinking we would miss it. However, Mari not only arranged for us to go today, but also bought our tickets. Mari is traveling with Eileen, John Berry, and Ellen D., so we have not seen her yet. Instead her assistant, Yasuko Nakaegawa came to the hotel and took us (in a taxi with those groovy self-closing doors) to the Takaruzaka Theater (Thanks Yasuko!). We got there just on time and loved our seats: by themselves on the end of a row so that we could both stretch our feet out each way. (Still cramped up from the flight!)

The Revue was fantastic and shouldn’t be missed (even if you somehow managed to miss it in its home city of Osaka while teaching there for a year, cough). It’s an all-women cast, something still unusual today. (The audience was also something like 90% women.) There were two shows, Valencia, 90 minutes of something about Napoleon and Spain, then a mind-blowing 30-minute show, Space Fantasista. Which is really something to write home about. Not so much the plot (um, the origins of the universe?) but the lights, songs, dances, and the way way way out costumes. Feathers. Lots and lots of feathers. There was a shop where you could buy a special edition $600 DVD of one of their shows. We bought four, of course. Be ready for them at Xmas!

After that it was hard to be impressed by anything. Except we were in Ginza and went to goggle over the new toys at the Sony store (shiny! small! like Apple, but Sony!), eat pizza (hee hee! Italian food is great in Japan), go to HMV (hello Mayumi Kojima! Super Butter Dog!—nothing new but listened to a lot. Any recommendations welcome!), wander round lovely stores (all the lovelier with a/c—we were told it is an extra hot summer this year, yay…!), and take the subway back. Yay public transport. Now to avoid sleeping too early so that we will not zoink awake at 5 AM. Again.

We have some email access but will be mostly off it until Sept. 14 when we will be back in the office in Easthampton (and to the Brooklyn Book Fest on the 16th, eek!). There may be some more We Did This and That from Japan. It Depends. We are going to the WorldCon (schedule below) and then will travel about some. Most of that will probably be off the grid. Yay!

Kelly’s schedule:

Fri 1400 What Do You Read Passionately Besides SF Is cross-genre reading all that popular? Can an author of one genre rightly expect his/her readers to follow when the author switches genres? What, as a fan, do you like to read? Do you read outside that genre? As an author, do you write outside that genre? Grant CARRINGTON, Kelly LINK, Kirsten (KJ) BISHOP, Marianne PLUMRIDGE-EGGLETON, Susan DE GUARDIOLA, Carolina GOMEZ LAGERLOF
Fri 1700 Introducing the Triptree Award and the Sense of Gender Award   Reona KASHIWAZAKI, Yutaka EBIHARA, Hisayo OGUSHI, Tomoyo KASUYA, Megumi KOBAYASHI, Yasuhiko NISHIZAWA, Natsuko MORI, Mari KOTANI, Kelly LINK, Candas Jane DORSEY, Eileen GUNN
Sat 1600 Is It Really Strange?: New Slipstream Bruce Stterling coined the term Slipstream nearly twenty years ago. Since then a bunch of new writers has written a lot of that kind of unclassifiable strange fiction. But is it a type, or subgenre? One thing is clear now. Many writers in their thirties now prefer to write bizarre and surrealistic stories within our genre. And it happens in Japan, too. Kelly LINK, Patrick NIELSEN HAYDEN, Mark L. VAN NAME, Takashi OGAWA
Sun 1000 Small Press Publishing in the United States, Japan, Europe … Some of the most exciting work in science fiction, fantasy and horror is produced by small presses. What makes a book good? Can small presses save us from degeneration? What challenges in design, production, and marketing do small presses face? Can labors of love make money? Daniel SPECTOR, Bob EGGLETON, Charles ARDAI, John D. BERRY, Kelly LINK

Gavin’s schedule:

Fri 1000 Sprawl Fiction
Participants: Ellen DATLOW, Gavin J. GRANT, Lou ANDERS, Yoshio KOBAYASHI
“Sprawl fiction” was coined to show how new writers, most in their thirties, are trying to expand our genre yet still loving its very core, straight SF. Terms like “new Weird”, “interstitial”, “strange fiction” or “new fabulist” don’t cover the trend fully. It is a natural reflection of our urban society and probably heralds the new stage of our evolution; to the stars. We talk about why the new generation slipstream is not the fusion of literary fiction and SF/F.

Fri 1200 How Healthy is the Short Story
Participants: Ellen DATLOW, Gavin J. GRANT, Joe HALDEMAN, Larry NIVEN
For decades, there has been talk of the death of short fiction in science fiction, fantasy, and horror. Are markets shrinking? Is the quality less than it was thirty years ago?

Fri 1700 Kaffeeklatsche
Participants: Gavin J. GRANT

Sun 1400 The Short Story’s Role in Fantastic Fiction
Participants: Ellen DATLOW, Gavin J. GRANT, Larry NIVEN, Pat CADIGAN
Short fiction rarely gets the attention that novels do by reviewers. It is harder to sell collections and anthologies than novels. The panelists, writers and editors of short fiction discuss their thoughts about the shorter forms (short story, novelette, novella) of fantastic fiction.

Sun 1600 Lost Tribes of Cult Novels
Participants: Elizabeth Anne HULL, Gavin J. GRANT, Yoshio KOBAYASHI
Where have the cult novels gone? They were once legion; “Stranger in a Stranger Land”, “Cat’s Cradle”, “The Lord of the Rings”, “Illuminatus!”, “Even Cowgirls Get the Blues”, “Neuromancer” and “The Wasp Factory” . But what about “Snow Crash” and “Harry Potter”? Why aren’t they cult novels?



Sat 25 Aug 2007 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | 3 Comments| Posted by: Gavin

We are in Tokyo! Arrived via Northwest. Flight ok—tiny seats but at least they serve up all the bad movies you want on your tiny screen (Namastey London isn’t bad: it had the proper amount of cheesy pop and fun dancing).

マジック・フォー・ビギナーズWe were met at the airport by Kelly’s editor at Hayakawa, Naoki Shimizu, who very kindly accompanied us all the way to our hotel (the amazing Hotel Grand Palace). He also gave Kelly a copy of the new hardcover Japanese edition of Magic for Beginners—which has a lovely painting of a telephone box on the cover, a review in the Nikkei paper, and her schedule (Tues/Wed: busy!)

How sensible it seemed that there are regularly scheduled buses from the airport to all the big hotels. We picked up a rental cell phone at the airport, maybe we ate something, but mostly what we did was wonder why we were awake until, happily, we were not.

Now it is Saturday evening. We started out the day with the fabby Japanese breakfast at the hotel (rice/rice porridge, miso soup, poached eggs, pot of green tea, some fishy and meaty bits for those that like that sort of thing) then made a quick trip out doors. It is melty: hot and humid. So it was a slow trip around a few blocks then to Lawson to see how the onigiri had progressed in the last 10 years. (Still tasty!) Lucky we got those snacks, because Mari Kotani had arranged for us to see the Takarazuka Revue. We were originally meant to go on Tuesday with Eileen Gunn and others but Kelly has interviews all day so we were thinking we would miss it. However, Mari not only arranged for us to go today, but also bought our tickets. Mari is traveling with Eileen, John Berry, and Ellen D., so we have not seen her yet. Instead her assistant, Yasuko Nakaegawa came to the hotel and took us (in a taxi with those groovy self-closing doors) to the Takaruzaka Theater (Thanks Yasuko!). We got there just on time and loved our seats: by themselves on the end of a row so that we could both stretch our feet out each way. (Still cramped up from the flight!)

The Revue was fantastic and shouldn’t be missed (even if you somehow managed to miss it in its home city of Osaka while teaching there for a year, cough). It’s an all-women cast, something still unusual today. (The audience was also something like 90% women.) There were two shows, Valencia, 90 minutes of something about Napoleon and Spain, then a mind-blowing 30-minute show, Space Fantasista. Which is really something to write home about. Not so much the plot (um, the origins of the universe?) but the lights, songs, dances, and the way way way out costumes. Feathers. Lots and lots of feathers. There was a shop where you could buy a special edition $600 DVD of one of their shows. We bought four, of course. Be ready for them at Xmas!

After that it was hard to be impressed by anything. Except we were in Ginza and went to goggle over the new toys at the Sony store (shiny! small! like Apple, but Sony!), eat pizza (hee hee! Italian food is great in Japan), go to HMV (hello Mayumi Kojima! Super Butter Dog!—nothing new but listened to a lot. Any recommendations welcome!), wander round lovely stores (all the lovelier with a/c—we were told it is an extra hot summer this year, yay…!), and take the subway back. Yay public transport. Now to avoid sleeping too early so that we will not zoink awake at 5 AM. Again.

We have some email access but will be mostly off it until Sept. 14 when we will be back in the office in Easthampton (and to the Brooklyn Book Fest on the 16th, eek!). There may be some more We Did This and That from Japan. It Depends. We are going to the WorldCon (schedule below) and then will travel about some. Most of that will probably be off the grid. Yay!

Kelly’s schedule:

Fri 1400 What Do You Read Passionately Besides SF Is cross-genre reading all that popular? Can an author of one genre rightly expect his/her readers to follow when the author switches genres? What, as a fan, do you like to read? Do you read outside that genre? As an author, do you write outside that genre? Grant CARRINGTON, Kelly LINK, Kirsten (KJ) BISHOP, Marianne PLUMRIDGE-EGGLETON, Susan DE GUARDIOLA, Carolina GOMEZ LAGERLOF
Fri 1700 Introducing the Triptree Award and the Sense of Gender Award   Reona KASHIWAZAKI, Yutaka EBIHARA, Hisayo OGUSHI, Tomoyo KASUYA, Megumi KOBAYASHI, Yasuhiko NISHIZAWA, Natsuko MORI, Mari KOTANI, Kelly LINK, Candas Jane DORSEY, Eileen GUNN
Sat 1600 Is It Really Strange?: New Slipstream Bruce Stterling coined the term Slipstream nearly twenty years ago. Since then a bunch of new writers has written a lot of that kind of unclassifiable strange fiction. But is it a type, or subgenre? One thing is clear now. Many writers in their thirties now prefer to write bizarre and surrealistic stories within our genre. And it happens in Japan, too. Kelly LINK, Patrick NIELSEN HAYDEN, Mark L. VAN NAME, Takashi OGAWA
Sun 1000 Small Press Publishing in the United States, Japan, Europe … Some of the most exciting work in science fiction, fantasy and horror is produced by small presses. What makes a book good? Can small presses save us from degeneration? What challenges in design, production, and marketing do small presses face? Can labors of love make money? Daniel SPECTOR, Bob EGGLETON, Charles ARDAI, John D. BERRY, Kelly LINK

Gavin’s schedule:

Fri 1000 Sprawl Fiction
Participants: Ellen DATLOW, Gavin J. GRANT, Lou ANDERS, Yoshio KOBAYASHI
“Sprawl fiction” was coined to show how new writers, most in their thirties, are trying to expand our genre yet still loving its very core, straight SF. Terms like “new Weird”, “interstitial”, “strange fiction” or “new fabulist” don’t cover the trend fully. It is a natural reflection of our urban society and probably heralds the new stage of our evolution; to the stars. We talk about why the new generation slipstream is not the fusion of literary fiction and SF/F.

Fri 1200 How Healthy is the Short Story
Participants: Ellen DATLOW, Gavin J. GRANT, Joe HALDEMAN, Larry NIVEN
For decades, there has been talk of the death of short fiction in science fiction, fantasy, and horror. Are markets shrinking? Is the quality less than it was thirty years ago?

Fri 1700 Kaffeeklatsche
Participants: Gavin J. GRANT

Sun 1400 The Short Story’s Role in Fantastic Fiction
Participants: Ellen DATLOW, Gavin J. GRANT, Larry NIVEN, Pat CADIGAN
Short fiction rarely gets the attention that novels do by reviewers. It is harder to sell collections and anthologies than novels. The panelists, writers and editors of short fiction discuss their thoughts about the shorter forms (short story, novelette, novella) of fantastic fiction.

Sun 1600 Lost Tribes of Cult Novels
Participants: Elizabeth Anne HULL, Gavin J. GRANT, Yoshio KOBAYASHI
Where have the cult novels gone? They were once legion; “Stranger in a Stranger Land”, “Cat’s Cradle”, “The Lord of the Rings”, “Illuminatus!”, “Even Cowgirls Get the Blues”, “Neuromancer” and “The Wasp Factory” . But what about “Snow Crash” and “Harry Potter”? Why aren’t they cult novels?