I will be in Dublin next week, at Worldcon!
Panels/etc I’ll be on (well, the stitch&bitch isn’t a panel, obviously):
- Fri, 13:00-13:50: The power of representing ourselves in fanfiction
When they don’t see themselves on the page or on the screen, fans often reimagine characters, or find space in the canon for representation that wasn’t originally there, by creating their own head-canons of gender, sexuality, race and (dis)ability. Our panel talks about the power of representing ourselves by rewriting beloved characters, and discusses some of their favourite head-canons.
- Fri, 15:30-16:20: Craft is not a dirty word
Often the word ‘craft’ is used with derision, referring to something that is considered completely separate and inferior to ‘art’. Are there clear distinctions between the two? Is one naturally inferior to the other? ‘NO!’ say our panellists. Come and hear their defense of craft and its place in the world of art and the world at large.
- Sat, 10:30-11:20: Stitch ‘n’ bitch
UFO (UnFinished Object) encounter, knit ‘n’ natter… No matter what you call it, this is the place to come and work on your handicraft project and maybe have a great conversation. Who knows, you might even find help if you’re stuck (not guaranteed). NOT a quiet room!
- Sun 12:00-12:50: The importance of the fanfiction community (moderating)
As we can see from the Archive of Our Own – managed and maintained by its creators and readers and supporters – fanfiction isn’t just about the written works, but also about the community surrounding them. What can the fanfiction community offer that other areas of fandom can’t?
I am looking forward to it, although somewhat daunted by the sheer number of THINGS that are happening (to the point that I haven’t actually looked at Grenadine properly yet). There’s still a week to go, plenty of time…
Really pleased that I have a story in the forthcoming Portals anthology, from Zombies Need Brains.
Despite the name of the publisher, no zombies are involved. There is, however, a portal.
Working with the editors has been great, and I’m glad to finally be able to announce the story! Looking forward to reading all the other stories, too, especially from my co-Milford-attendee Jacey Bedford.
Here (in no particular order) are some of the things (this is a very incomplete list and doubtless I’ll want to add something as soon as I post it) that I read and enjoyed in 2018, and commend to you both for reading, and for considering for awards season:
- Aliette du Bodard, In The Vanishers’ Palace. Wonderful worldbuilding of a post-colonial world in disarray and the people trying to help; lyrical writing; and a f/f romance between a dragon and a scholar.
- T Kingfisher, Swordheart. Halla inherits a sword; which turns out to have a swordman magically trapped inside it. Shenanigans ensue. Such a fun read.
- T Kingfisher, The Wonder Engine. Second part of the Clocktaur War duology, and just as good as the first. Clockwork, a grumpy forger, and a disgraced paladin. (Set in the same world as Swordheart.)
- Juliet E McKenna, The Green Man’s Heir. Modern rural (as opposed to urban) fantasy/detective story.
- Stephen Cox, Our Child Of The Stars. Thoughtful, warm story about a family, their unusual child, and their efforts to protect him.
- Becky Chambers, Record of a Spaceborn Few. Yay more Becky Chambers. Notionally part of the Wayfarers series, but standalone. It’s more like four stories woven together. It’s gentle, and thoughtful, and I loved it.
- Yoon Ha Lee, Revenant Gun. Cracking finish to the Machineries of Empire series.
- Aliette du Bodard, The Tea Master and the Detective. Space opera Sherlock Holmes, with a mindship and a scholar, set in the Xuya universe.
- Katherine Fabian and Iona Datt Sharma, Sing For The Coming Of The Longest Night. Polyamory, queerness, and magic, and a mystery revolving around the solstice. Lovely. Also it’s set in London which is always a winner for me.
- Martha Wells, Exit Strategy. Fourth and final instalment of The Murderbot Diaries, though I admit I am hoping for more Murderbot after this. Murderbot is awesome.
- Zen Cho, If At First You Don’t Succeed, Try, Try Again. More dragons. Or, rather, an imugi that wants to be a dragon.
- T Kingfisher, “The Rose MacGregor Drinking And Admiration Society”. This made me laugh a lot.
- Isabel Yap, “Asphalt, River, Mother, Child”. Beautifully written and deeply affecting story set in the Philippines in the context of the ‘war on drugs’.
- Premee Mohamed “More Tomorrow”. When field trips go wrong…
- Alix E Harrow, “A Witch’s Guide To Escape: A Practical Compendium Of Portal Fantasies”. A librarian witch and a whole lot of portal fantasies; what’s not to like?
(Note to self: do a better job of tracking short story reading this year. I am pretty sure I have missed stuff that I loved when I read it.)
I can also recommend Liz Bourke’s Tor.com review column Sleeps With Monsters is great for adding to one’s TBR stack, should one feel the need to do that. (This year I really am going to read everything on the pile. Yes.)
I received the sad news, a month or so ago, that the Book Smugglers, my lovely publishers for A Glimmer Of Silver, my YA SF novella about second contact and choosing your responsibilities, would be moving away from for-sale publishing. As such, they planned to take all their short stories, novellas, and novels off sale at the end of the year.
But the good news is that they’ve been super helpful in handing me back the rights and helping me with self-publishing, so A Glimmer Of Silver is now available again from all the usual places where e-books are sold. The paperback is also forthcoming in the next couple of days, via Amazon.
So if you haven’t yet read A Glimmer Of Silver, now might be a good time to fix that.
So, it’s been a busy few weeks. Last month my novel The Deep And Shining Dark was released. This month, my novella A Glimmer Of Silver came out from The Book Smugglers. It’s available from Amazon US, Amazon UK, and Smashwords. It has been getting good reviews, too, which is awesome.
My novel The Deep And Shining Dark (Book One of the Marek Series) was released last Friday! It’s currently available as an ebook from various retailers; the print version will be out in September.
In the last ten days or so I’ve had a birthday, seen Hamilton, seen The Last Jedi for a second time, and got another couple of episodes of Black Sails in. All of these things are excellent and I heartily recommend them. (More Hamilton London tickets going on sale at the start of next week!)
(TLJ spoilers upcoming.)
The Last Jedi was, I think, better the second time around, because I was less anxious about Were They Going To Fuck This Up and could get on with enjoying it. And with spotting the bits and pieces I missed last time. Like the books in the drawer in the Falcon at the end; and, close to the start, Luke saying irritably to Rey, “What, did you think I was going to march out with a laser sword and face down the First Order single-handed?”. The final scene with Luke and Kylo Ren — and the cut at the end to Rey, the real Last Jedi — was even more epic second time around. I still think it was a smidge too long, but I enjoyed all of it regardless.
And now I’m about to have a virtual film night watch of Rock of Ages. I feel in need of popcorn 🙂