Friday, June 22, 2012

Audio Books...More or Less

So there's this book called Fifty Shades of Gray. The husband and I read an excerpt online, and you know what? It did bring us closer together as a couple. Because we were laughing so fucking hard we had to hang onto each other to keep from collapsing to the floor. Seriously, this book is shit. But I might still buy an audio copy if Gilbert Gottfried actually did read it.

(I keep hearing women are enthralled and intrigued by this amazing new thing called BDSM. Where the fuck were they living? Under a rock on a desert island somewhere? That's shit's on CSI, it's so mainstream now.

Here's a better book: Go the Fuck to Sleep, which every parent should be able to relate to, unless their kid sleeps all night since they were born, in which case their child is a freak who will probably murder them in their bed one day. It's read by brilliant lunatic director Werner Herzog, who seems like a cool guy to hang out with until you really think about it and realize he'll probably make fun of you later to his intellectual director friends.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Gen Con 2012 and Fandomfest

The main reason I have this blog is that when I attended the writers' track at Gen Con last year, all I heard was "Social media self promotion blah blah blah." So here I am.

Last year was my first year at Gen Con (went to Dragon*con before, but man was that getting too crowded for my tastes). I adored it. I game very, very casually but there are so many other panels and subjects (plus the above-mentioned awesome writers' track) that I am kept continually busy anyway.

I also post on an Asian pop culture blog called Yellow Menace, and am part of the YM podcast team. They also do a gamecast minus myself. And the really cool thing is, the YM gamecast hosts have been selected to produce some of the This Just In...From Gen Con!

This is a huge deal. This Just required listening for all Gen Con attendees so they know what is happening and what is going to be happening, and for all the poor people who couldn't make it so they can vicariously live some of the thrill of Gen Con. It's a big honer for my friends to be selected as hosts, and I know they are going to work their asses off to make it awesome. They need some new equipment to pull it off right though, so if you want to throw a couple bucks their way they have a website where you can do so (and I hear the guys will do a striptease if you give them enough):

As for me, I have my own stuff going on. But I'll be dressed as Athena (complete with-fake, sadly-owl) on Friday and old-school Mary Marvel on Saturday, so I should be easy to spot unless we're in a crowd because I am only 5"5.

In addition, the husband and myself will be attending Fandomfest in Louisville, KY the last week in June. It started out a couple years back as a horror film festival but has developed into a full-fledged con, complete with awesome writing guests like John Scalzi and Robin Hobb (although I bear a grudge against her for the shitty last book in the Assassins' Trilogy...sorry Robin, you really dropped the ball on an otherwise enchanting series). Some guy named Bruce Campbell is also going to be there, so whatever. We'll be there only Saturday, though. If you want to meet up or something give me a holla (I am so with the modern slang).

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

SF in "Nature"...But Not by Me

So there's this guy I know. He's an OK guy, and sometimes he writes too, and his stories are OK. He wrote an SF story and sent it to Nature. You know, the most prestigious scientific journal in the world? They have a back page feature called "Futures" where they print SF. Frederik Pohl has been on it. So have some other famous people, but I only care about Frederik Pohl since I love him so very much.

Anyway, this guy got in, and here is his story.

It's a pretty amazing story, actually. And to be honest he's a pretty amazing guy too.

That's why I married him. 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Something Joyful This Way Comes

In a way, Ray Bradbury invented writing for me.

I was 8 or 9, and I had always loved to read. But it wasn't until I picked up a book of Bradbury stories at the library that I realized a wonderful thing: words can weave magic spells. And this man, this man who was so full of joy and wonder that it spilled into every page of his work, even the sad parts, liked the same things I did: space, aliens, dinosaurs, Moby Dick. Maybe I could write stories too, I thought. And here I am.

About 15 years ago I had the honor of meeting Bradbury at Dragon*con. Fahrenheit 451 had just been re-released into a beautiful hardcover edition. I was 18 and poor, so I had brought my battered, definitely-not-first edition paperback of my favorite Bradbury novel, Something Wicked This Way Comes. After hours in line, I finally shuffled up to my literary god, shaking all the way. I handed him my poor book and said, "Sorry I don't have a better copy for you to sign."

He smiled and replied, "I like seeing books like this, because it means it's been read and loved."

I didn't hear anything anyone said to me for the rest of the day.

Bradbury signed my book in permanent marker, RAY BRADBURY!. Exclamation point and all. And I think he lived his life with exclamation points, with eagerness always to see what's next while not forgetting what lay behind.

My husband called me today to tell me the news. I was at the museum with my kid, so I didn't cry. But goddamn did my throat hurt for a while.