Short Fiction Follow-Up Thoughts

Since I’ve already jumped into a boiling pot of water this week (see prior posts), I might as well add a few additional comments, something I was planning on doing anyway. (I’m fairly sure I’m not burnt out on short fiction, since when I find something great, I still get as excited as a kid, so take it in that context…)

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Mad Men Series Finale

Ann and I saw the Mad Men series finale on Thursday night and for much of it sat there stunned, watching one of the best forty-five minutes of television in the past year. The carousel pitch (video below–might be considered a spoiler) was one of the most brilliant examples of text and subtext being hardwired together that I’ve seen in a long time. It’s actually a great example for fiction writers of how to (1) advance the plot and surface of a story, (2) advance a subplot, (3) invest in characterization and backstory, and (4) express a character’s emotions indirectly, all at once.

Although there were a couple of episodes mid-season that sagged slightly, Mad Men is currently our favorite show.

Bear on the War Path

Elizabeth Bear has a great post here. There are only a couple of problems with it: I agree with her about most it, but don’t feel it negates, generally, the issues and, more importantly, the questions I raise here. She’s dismissing the questioning tone of my piece, and she’s also invalidating my general feeling: I’m not enjoying most of the short fiction I’m reading. I can’t help that–that’s a genuine reaction, it’s how I feel. I don’t know how you can rail against how another human being feels. Now, that may be me being burnt out in my reading, or it may be something else, as I said in my post. It may be related to my own recalibrating of my own technique, too. As I said.

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I-CON 27

Ann and I are guests at I-CON at Stony Brook University in New York this spring, along with Harlan Ellison, Elizabeth Bear, Charlaine Harris, and a few others. Ann will be there in her capacity as Weird Tales editor and participating in a workshop and panels. I’ll be doing panels and my Ambergris multi-media presentation. More information as I have it.

Portrait of a Journey

I just love this image that Tessa posted about her trip to Japan–showing all the rooms she stayed in. If you go to her site, you can click on it for a larger version. Really, it’s got that perfect sense of adventure and sadness you get–the post-trip blues.

What a journey–more than five weeks in Japan.

Jeff

Polluto Magazine and “Finding Sonoria”

I’ve just sold “Finding Sonoria,” a new story, to the new magazine, Polluto, which, from the webpage, looks like it’s going to be pretty damn cool. They’re also running an unconventional interview with me. The first issue comes out in January. They’re out of London. Way cool. A new, interesting magazine is always a good thing.

And I’m excited because “Finding Sonoria,” along with “The Goat Variations” in Other Earths, represents a bit of a return to the real for me, in a more stripped-down prose context. Some people with expectations of what my style is, and what I write about, may find it something of a surprise.

Jeff