Stop Hating on Asimov

Monday, April 4th, 2016

Lately I’ve noticed a meme going around spec fiction writer’s groups and conventions. “Isaac Asimov couldn’t get published today.” “Don’t model yourself after Asimov.” “Isaac Asimov was a bad writer.” Sometimes I hear this from the same authors who cite Asimov as one of the authors who got them interested in science fiction in the first place.

Yes, Asimov does not craft words as well as Bradbury (an author who does seem to be making the transition from genre to canon). No, he’s not as much of a page turner as Heinlein. And yes, his characters sometimes read flat compared to characters in more modern fiction. Certainly, like most authors of his generation he overly focused on men (with the really notable exception of Susan Calvin). Nonetheless Asimov did one thing really, really well. Better than probably 99% of pro authors writing today, and that is ideas.

Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide 2016

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

The Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide 2016 is now kickstarting. $20 gets you a DRM free epub including my story “Blood Test” and a paperback donation to the school of your choice. Coyotes, little sisters, and a heptathlon in New Mexico. What could go wrong?

Why I’m Not at BookCon

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

I like conventions. I like book conventions. I love book conventions that don’t require long distance travel and hotel. But on the other hand:

BookCon is the event where storytelling and pop culture collide. Consumers and brands will experience the origin of the story in all its forms by interacting with the authors, publishers, celebrities and creators of content that influence everything we read, hear and see.

Who is HJPEV?

Monday, February 16th, 2015

So chapter 104 of Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality is out and big reveal at the end. Reading comments at fanfic and r/hpmor, I’m going to go out on a limb and say most folks are missing the point of the last line. Spoilers follow.

Hugo 2014: Best Related Work

Friday, August 15th, 2014

The Best Related Work category was really weak this year. I voted for Wonderbook: The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction by Jeff VanderMeer, with Jeremy Zerfoss. It’s the only one of the nominees that’s truly ambitious, and represents serious effort and thought. It’s not the best How to write book I’ve read, but it’s at least something.

Hugo 2014: The Novels

Monday, July 28th, 2014

This year for the first time I’m making a real effort to read all the Hugo nominees. First up: the novels.