Monthly Archives: January 2013

More fiction-themed bloggy stream-crossing

Just because once again it seems pertinent; my academic alter-ego has been blogging more over at Cyborgology about fiction and why it matters, even to people who do ostensibly non-fictional work.

Fictive writing doesn’t just allow us a deeper understanding of our past but a richer window into our present and a more vital imagining of our future. As I’ll argue extensively to anyone who has the misfortune to raise the topic with me (I am so much fun at parties), far from being merely escapism, fiction – especially speculative fiction – is a fantastically useful arena in which to do social theory, yet it’s one that most social scientists roundly ignore…Speculative fiction, among other genres, allows us to explore the full implications of our relationship with technology, of the arrangement of society, of who we are as human beings and who we might become as more-than-human creatures. It’s useful not because it’s expected to rigidly adhere to the plausible but because it’s liberated from doing exactly that: it’s free to take what-if as far as it can go.

Perhaps I don’t need to keep making this argument, given that whenever I do it seems like there’s a chorus of people who soundly agree with me. Then again, I get the sense that there’s a sizable block of older-generation sociologists who still think the internet might be kind of a passing, unimportant thing, so there you go.

Music has the right to fiction: some writerly soundtracks

I’ve been kicking some short story-writing into high gear again as I shelve a couple of longer projects for the time being, and that means that the amount of time I spend writing every day has increased a bit. One of the things I’ve found most helpful in pushing me through longer working stretches – keeping me inspired, keeping me motivated – is music. So here are some of my favorites and reliable go-tos, especially for anyone who might be looking for the same.

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Reminder: One week left to win Line and Orbit stuff!

Promise I’m almost done yelling about this: There is now ONE WEEK REMAINING in my Line and Orbit giveaway. So get in on that now if you haven’t.

Quick recap: Chosen at random, two people will win magnets and copies of the ebook in their choice of formats. One lucky person will win a magnet, a nifty flash drive loaded with all formats of the ebook, and a bunch of jewelry I made.

ENTER HERE if you are so inclined.

Contest closes at midnight on the 5th.


News and updates: I sold a bunch of stuff.

By “a bunch” I mean “three”. Three recent story sales, all of which I’m extremely pleased about. Here they are:

  • “The Horse Latitudes” to Ideomancer (which I have been trying to crack forever so yaaaaaay (I think I might have mentioned this here before? Oh, well)
  • “Love in the Time of Vivisection” to Shimmer, which is sort of slipstream/horror and which is one of my favorite stories I’ve written in a while (and the title for which started out as a joke, no kidding)
  • “A Heap of Broken Images” to the colonial/post-colonial-themed anthology We See a Different Frontier. I’m especially excited about this last one, because a) it’s a terrific project concept, and b) LOOK AT THE TOC. You guys. You guys. asdfghjkl

“The Horse Latitudes” should be out in a couple of months. “Love in the Time of Vivisection” will be out this summer, as will We See a Different Frontier. I am excite.

Guest post: Lisa Soem on co-writing a book without killing each other

Today I’m pleased to welcome Very Special Guest Star Line and Orbit co-author Lisa to the blog-like object. She’s going to talk about our book and how we made it happen. EVERYONE PAY ATTENTION BECAUSE SHE IS AWESOME


LineandOrbitHi all!

Lisa here, Sunny’s lurking-in-the-shadows co-author on the forthcoming Line and Orbit. Sunny is far better at marketing and interneting than I, so I’ve been mostly clinging to their coattails throughout the entire publication process and watching them work. When they offered me a guest spot on their blog, I was hard-pressed to find a topic I thought would be interesting for you guys. But, after explaining the book to my mother (and, eventually, I’ll probably have to explain it to the Priest and Rosary Altar Society in my home town, as that’s who she’s recommended it to), I realized that the fact that we’ve written and published a book together is, in and of itself, kind of unusual.

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Confession time: promo makes me feel cheap and dirty

oh god

oh god

I guess this actually isn’t much of a confession; I have yet to meet a writer who genuinely enjoys the business of trying to sell the thing they’ve put all this time and effort into creating. I think most of us feel awkward about it at best, and at worst we feel that we’re actively assisting in the process of cheapening this Precious Child Of Inspiration that has sprung from the core of our Creative Soul, lo, as Athena springing fully grown from the head of Zeus.

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Yet another reminder: 22 DAYS TO GET FREE STUFF

I promise to keep my yelling about this to a minimum, but I want to once again yawp about how I’m giving away a bunch of Line and Orbit crap RIGHT HERE.

Entering is easy and even fun if you like comment forms and I promise to use your contact info only to send you periodic updates about what polish I’m doing my nails with today.

Crossing the blog streams a bit again

In case anyone’s interested, my academic alter-ego wrote a post for Cyborgology the other day that deals with my complicated and problematic relationship with print and ebooks in the context of seeing Line and Orbit through to publication.

When I write a manuscript, it should be real to me; I brought it into being, shaped and manipulated it until I was happy with it, put it into the words that I chose. And yet it’s not really real to me until someone has paid me money to publish it, and it’s still not as real as it could be until it’s in physical, tactile form. A lot of this, again, is about external validation, but most of it is how I personally navigate what I perceive as different orders of real. Not necessarily physical/digital and real/unreal, but rather a spectrum along which this thing that I made moves.

Woo navel-gazing. And navel-gazing in which I work in a plug for my book. Shameless.

If you’re not enough before the gold medal, you won’t be enough with it.

Listen to Wesley. He knows what’s up.

A “this was very close” story rejection today got me kind of in a meditative mood, especially given the reflective nature of the New Yearish time of year, and I found myself facing something that I come back to a lot these days when successes are immediately followed by things not working out the way I want them to.

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Line and Orbit giveaway: ENTER HERE

The Basics: Starting now and going until February 5th, you can enter to win a bunch of Line and Orbit loot. The entry form is at the bottom of the post. Three winners will be chosen at random on the day the contest closes. Please, one entry per person.

What you get:

One grand prize winner will receive

  • Eight bracelets and one necklace – made by me – based on major characters in the book
  • A magnet of the book cover
  • A flashdrive containing all formats of the ebook.

Two runners-up will receive:

  • A magnet
  • An emailed copy of the ebook in their choice of format.

In the post previous to this, I detailed exactly what I’m giving away, item by item. But here’s a shot of all of it at once:

Entry form is below. Go to it!