Lost Transmissions: The Secret History of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Lost Transmissions

Congratulations to Desirina Boskovich, who has done it again with the glorious coffee table book LOST TRANSMISSIONS: The Secret History of Science Fiction and Fantasy. Published by Abrams Image, all sorts of people are spilling the beans in here:  Charlie Jane Anders, Neil Gaiman, Paul Tremblay, Molly Tanzer, Nick Mamatas, Annalee Newitz, Christie Yant, Darran Anderson, Jesse Bullington, William Gibson, and many many more. I especially enjoyed the essay about Jane Loudon, Assassin’s Creed, and Janelle Monaé!

img_20190916_084955997.jpgMy humble essay is about “The Ideal Men,” which were the competing, celebrity robot rascals of the 1930s and 1940s including my favorite, Elektro the Smoking Robot.

Anyway, if you think you are a SFF buff, think again and buy this book!

 

Appearance: The 2019 Outer Dark Symposium–Atlanta, Georgia

Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 5.28.45 PMI am pleased as punch to announce that I will be a guest at this year’s OUTER DARK SYMPOSIUM in Atlanta, Georgia. It’s been an evolving and wonderful conference, with each year outdoing the other, and I was sorry to have missed last year in CA. I was honored to be at the first one, and looking forward to reconnecting to old friends, and making new ones. Will I see you there?

What is especially exciting this year is this: “This year we’re beyond excited to welcome our largest line-up yet, 40 of the most dynamic authors, editors, artists, publishers, and scholars in Weird fiction today. As with The Outer Dark podcast, our goal is to foster conversation and community among a diverse slate of program participants–inclusive, safe and welcoming to women, LBGTQ+, and writers of color. Returning to Atlanta allows us again to involve SOBSF/BlacktastiCon organizers Milton Davis and Balogun Ojetade. And sponsor support from Silvia Moreno-Garcia‘s Innsmouth Free Press is helping us bring World Fantasy Award-nominated Mexican author Gabriela Damián Miravete.” (This is a huge deal. Don’t believe me, here are some of her stories online here and here.)

In order to fund this conference, Scott Nicolay, Anya Martin, and Melanie Crew are holding an Indiegogo with some pretty insane perks–signed Hellraiser memorabilia, rare and out-offprint chapbooks, and bundles by your favorite Weird authors. (They also make an amazing program book, with exclusive art and such. When I went in 2015, Yves Tourigny illustrated my piece on Leonora Carrington’s “Down, Down, Down.” This year it features original cover art by Liv-Rainey Smith!

IMG_1991_Fotor

I was happy to donate a few books and some services: currently, there are a few copies of my first Dunhams Manor Press limited-edition chapbook, Of Parallel and Parcel, which was sold out in 2014, and has a run of 50 copies. You can also get this chapbook in a bundle with an ARC of my short story collection, CALLS FOR SUBMISSION. All signed and personalized!

I’m also offering some Tarot reading services. Tarot has become an important creative tool for me, and I love sharing its power with friends and colleagues, so I’m doing two kind of readings for Outer Dark fans and supporters. For $25, you can get a personalized email reading with images, or for $50, you can get a 60-min Skype session with me, plus follow-up email with a write-up and images.

Of course, I know there are other things needing your money, but if you had just $5 to spare in support, that would be of great help and will get you some swag and a shout-out in the program book.

If you are unfamiliar with THE OUTER DARK, here is more info quoted from their Indiegogo page:

“The Outer Dark Symposium on the Greater Weird is the world’s only conference focusing on contemporary Weird fiction, film and art. The third annual symposium will gather more than 40 writers, artists, filmmakers & editors on March 22 and 23, 2019 at Silver Scream FX Lab and Hotel Indigo-College Park in Atlanta, GA. Hear all the readings and panels on The Outer Dark podcast, which airs on This Is Horror, reaching thousands of listeners who are readers of Weird and speculative fiction.

“GUESTS/PROGRAM PARTICIPANTS: Mike Allen, Gregory Norman Bossert, David Bowles, Jesse Bullington, Nadia Bulkin, Selena Chambers, Gerald Coleman, Nancy A. Collins, Milton Davis, Kristi DeMeester, Kurt Fawver, John Foster, Chris Gavaler, Fiona Maeve Geist, Craig Laurance Gidney, Larissa Glasser, Orrin Grey, Edward Austin Hall, Lynne Hansen, Brian Kirk, Gwendolyn Kiste, Marc Laidlaw, Ian McDowell, Violette L. Meier, Gabriela Damian Miravete, Sunny Moraine, Shane Morton, Balogun Ojetade, Liv Rainey-Smith, Zin E. Rocklyn, Eric Schaller, Jeff Strand,  Damien Angelica Walters, Brookelynne Warra, Michael Wehunt, Lesley Wheeler, Gordon B. White, Lisa Yaszek.

 

 

Appearance: Tattered Cover Colfax, Denver, CO, Wednesday, Dec. 5th

I’m packing on up for my flight to Denver tomorrow. I’m really excited to be visiting the area again, and finally visiting the famous Tattered Cover bookstore in Colfax, Denver.

I will be there Wednesday, December 5th celebrating the release of MECHANICAL ANIMALS: TALES AT THE CRUX OF CREATURE AND TECH with my co-editor Jason Heller, and contributors Stephen Graham-Jones, Molly Tanzer, and Carrie Vaughn. It’s going to be a really great reading with signings to follow, and if you are in the Denver area I hope you will come by and say hi!

Event page with details: https://www.tatteredcover.com/events#event-id-144273

 

BOOK RELEASE: MECHANICAL ANIMALS

mechanimalscover
Out November 27th. Cover art: Aaron Lovett

While it is true Marilyn Manson’s MECHANICAL ANIMALS has turned 20 years old, another MECHANICAL ANIMALS has been just born, and I hope will grow up to be as long-lasting and epic.

This is the anthology I co-edited with the brilliant Jason Heller (whose STRANGE STARS came out earlier this year, and needs to be on your gift list, if not already). While I haven’t talked about it too much, this project has been 5 years in the making, and it’s hard to believe it is finally out and about in the wild.

This has been a dream project, and I am thankful to Jason for being an ideal collaborator (not to mention friend), to Josh Viola, Dean Wyant, and the team at HEX Publishing for putting their faith into the book, and, most of all, to our contributors who turned this antho’s theme into a conversation about biomimcry, automata, and our complex relationship with nature and technology. Needless to say, Jason and I couldn’t do this with out their wonderful words and worlds.

We will be celebrating the book’s release at Tattered Cover (Colfax location) in Denver, on December 5th. Joining us will be Stephen Graham-Jones, Molly Tanzer, and Carrie Vaughn. It’s going to be a lot of fun, and if you are in the area, please stop by and say hi!

So, to the nitty gritty details, then:

MECHANICAL ANIMALS: TALES AT THE CRUX OF CREATURE AND TECH is a speculative fiction safari that riffs on the traditional ideals of automata to explore our strange and competitive relationship with the natural world. Biomimicry is no stranger to literature, with canonical authors like Nathaniel Hawthorne, Hans Christian Anderson, and Jules Verne setting the tone for a trope that has expounded and expanded upon what exactly separates humans from the animal kingdom as well as the boundary between machines and living beings. Featuring 15 original stories by today’s top science fiction and fantasy authors and contextual mecha-fauna essays by artist and Insect Lab Studio maker, Mike Libby, and SF encyclopedist and author Jess Nevins, Mechanical Animals presents a biomimicry menagerie of animalistic machines that will blur the lines between what is and isn’t nature’s design.

Contributor’s Include: Mike Libby, Jess Nevins, Tessa Kum, Delia Sherman, Maurice Broaddus, Sarah Hans, Lauren Beukes, Jesse Bullington, An Owomoyela, Stephen Graham Jones, Hans Christian Andersen, Molly Tanzer, Aliette de Bodard, Nick Mamatas, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Kat Howard, Michael Cisco, Adrian Van Young, Robert T. Toombs, Joseph S. Pulver, Jr., Alistair Rennie, Jules Verne, Caroline Yoachim, Carrie Vaughn

It has been called “Mind-stretching tales of synthetic fauna….” by Kirkus.

ORDERING (If you c

HEX Publishing

Amazon

Indiebound

 

Barnes & Noble

Publishing Notes: NonBinary Review #12: The Works of Edgar Allan Poe

nbr_poecover
Cover art by MANDEM.

For the past few months, I have been reading for Zoetic Press’s NonBinary Review #12: The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, which I have the honor of serving as Guest Editor. It was just released, and is now available for digital purchase for just $1.99.

Out of something like 63 submissions, I selected 32 stories, poems, essays, and artwork to appear in this issue, as well as its online sister companion, Alphanumeric. I was only able to do this with the patient gut-checking and assistance of Zoetic Press‘s founder and editrix-in-chief Lise Quintana, and all of her awesome editors. I can’t thank them enough for letting me join their sandbox!

I really enjoyed editing this issue, and I hope you will enjoy reading it! From the dark, decadent gothic to sharp, modern retellings, I wanted to make sure the issue had something for every kind of Poe fan here. One aspect of this issue that may be surprising to all Poe fans is the presence of lighter tones and humor in some of the pieces. Poe was actually a funny guy and that aspect of his personality is often excised when we discuss his work, so I was very happy to receive submissions celebrating that. One fantastic example is “The Ravening,” by Meadhbh Hamrick, which launches this month’s Alphanumeric*

“The Ravening” is a hilarious text-based adventure game based on the archetypal Poe hero that no only sheds light on popular culture’s perception of Poe’s work but also illustrates its timelessness. Can you survive the massive doses of laudanum required to survive? Click here to find out. 

Oh, and Poepathists may recognize my introduction, “The Living Poe Girl.”It is a radically revised edition of a series that ran at Tor.com in 2009, and touches on the heroines that appear in this issue, Ligeia, Berenice, The Oval Portrait, and of course, Virginia Poe.

*Alphanumeric is the fun, free, month-long online companion to each issue of NonBinary Review. This is a great way for readers to get a feel for the issue’s vibe, so if you are on the fence about buying the issue, check in every week to get a sample of the issue.

The Curse of Frankenstein, Updates, and Other Frankenphilia

Wandering Spirits shrine
Wandering Spirits: Traveling Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (Tallhat Press) now available for purchase at Amazon.

Last Thursday, my good friend, vintage movie expert, bomb writer, and teratologist Orrin Grey inducted me into the wiles of the Hammer Frankenstein films. I’ve never seen them, and so what a better way to celebrate #Frankenstein200 than live-tweeting the experience. It was loads of fun, and we storified the experience here.

In addition to celebrating the Villa Diodati bicentennial, we were also marking a few other related events:

The release of Orrin’s first non-fiction collection, MONSTERS FROM THE VAULT, which collects over five years worth of his regular vintage horror flick column, VAULT OF SECRETS, that runs over at INNSMOUTH FREE PRESS. And speaking of, his latest column there delves into more territory with a look at IT! (1967). Check it out here.

Word Horde did a cover reveal of its Frankenstein tribute anthology, ETERNAL FRANKENSTEIN, out in October, and boy, it is a beauty!

And, of course, my own little chapbook from Tallhat Press, WANDERING SPIRITS, which has been doing really well since its release last week. In the past few days, it premiered as #1 New Release in its category, even hit #5 at one point, has been spotted in the wild via book pics, become the focus of a really fun giveaway at the Frankenstein200 Facebook page, and has garnered five stars in its first review!  I am really excited about the response it has been getting, and I know it wouldn’t have been done without the help of friends and colleagues who have helped spread the information, and to the readers who shelled out to buy this book. To each and every one of you:  Thank you!

STEAMPUNK WORLD is In The Haus, and in EW.com

STEAMPUNK WORLD, the Kickstarter Exclusive is on right, the trade is on the left. Both covers by James Ng. Edited by Sarah Hans. Published by Alliteration Ink.
STEAMPUNK WORLD, the Kickstarter Exclusive is on right, the trade is on the left. Both covers by James Ng. Edited by Sarah Hans. Published by Alliteration Ink.

The long-awaited Kickstarter success, Sarah Han’s STEAMPUNK WORLD (Alliteration Ink), was released last August. It contains my Orientalism tourism story “”The Şehrazatın Diyoraması Tour.” I received my contributor copies last Thursday, and I am very impressed.

Featuring illustrations by James Ng, an excellent introduction by Beyond Victoriana’s Diana Pho, and stories by Nisi Shawl, Ken Liu, Jay Lake (whom the tome is dedicated too), Jaymee Goh, Balogun Ojetade, Pip Ballantine. and Rochita Loenen-Ruiz (to name a few!), this collection aims to illustrate that Steampunk’s legacy lies outside of its common, mainstream Western trappings.

Sarah did a fine job, and I am not the only one who thinks so. Writing for EW.com, Jason Heller  included STEAMPUNK WORLD in his overview of Steampunk slipping into the mainstream, and in doing so is garnering a broader appeal. One happy conclusion he draws is that the mainstream wants to see a multicultural steampunk: “Clearly, there’s a hunger for steampunk literature that looks through a different pair of goggles; Steampunk World is a strong step in the right direction.”

If you did not back the anthology, you can order copies directly from the publisher  or from Amazon.