At Amazon: Brooks Hansen’s The Brotherhood of Joseph

My interview with Brooks Hansen about his new nonfiction book is now up on Amazon. Hansen has written a number of fine novels, including The Chess Garden which is one of my favorites of all time.

(Also book-related: Digital Plague Top 10 on Amazon and Matt Staggs’ interviews with Beth Adele-Long and Kelly Barnhill.)

Excerpt:
Ultimately, though, if I’m being honest, that alone would not have compelled me to write the book. What compelled me to write the book is what happened to us in Siberia, specifically, in the course of around thirty-six hours. That day, day-and-a-half, was so far beyond anything I had ever experienced in my entire life, and ever hope to experience, I really had no choice but to try to express it. Given what I do for a living, it would have been cowardly, weird, and mildly deranged not to.

TORTURE SQUID: Zach Taylor/VanderMeer Comic to Be Completed Soonish

Artist Zach Taylor has been working on preliminary sketches for a Torture Squid comic book/graphic novel. I’m providing him with a rough textual treatment for him to use as the basis for the storyline. We haven’t sought out a publisher–we’re going to finish it first. (Zach, btw, has created some great Evil Monkey for President swag, based on my EM persona, available here. Check it out.)

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Dystopian Fiction Database

John Joseph Adams is editing another reprint fiction anthology for NS. This time on dystopias. He’s created a database to list stories, and is asking for recommendations. I absolutely love this idea. I think it’s energizing to give readers a voice, and it makes sure he doesn’t miss out on any stories. Some editors would like to think they can track just about anything down, but the fact is there’s too much out there. This ensures diversity and participation. Two driving forces in social media and the internet right now. Nice job.

Secret Lives-Finally Out! And Beautiful!

Yes, that’s right, Secret Lives is now out. Mine were shipped right from the printer. The publisher will be shipping out orders shortly. Our preferred bookseller is Ziesing Books, because the book idea originated with them. You can order it from them here.

Here is a short video detailing some of the book’s special features, including unusual end papers…(Mr. Matt Cheney, pay attention, sir.)

Any questions? Please let me know.

At Amazon: Michael Phillips on the Necessity of E-Books

My interview with Michael Phillips about e-books and fiction generally. He’s definitely a fan of the darker stuff, whether dark fantasy or dark mainstream. Phillips has a physical disability and has to use e-books, so he has a somewhat unique perspective.

Excerpt:
Amazon.com: Are there any books you can’t get in e-book form? Which ones are on the top of your wish list?
Michael Phillips: Too many. Michael Cisco, for instance, is a brilliant writer, but none of his stuff is available. I’d love to read Steven R. Donaldson, but he’s not available either. Even the Harry Potter series isn’t available. Sometimes audio books fill in the gaps, but they’re not always available either, or they’re abridged. Also, hearing an audio book just isn’t the same as reading the written word. Words and paragraphs paint their own pictures, written text has a certain beauty.

Kate Bernheimer at Enter the Octopus

Per my post on current favorite fantasists in the short story form, Matt Staggs has now taken it upon himself to do short interviews with all of the writers on the list. Which should provide readers with more and fascinating information. First up is Kate Bernheimer.

Does “It” Exist If No One Sees “It”? And Can You Make “It”?

I get a fair amount of email asking advice about internet PR. Things like, “Should I do a video promo for my book?” Or, “is a podcast a good idea?”

My reply, first, is usually: “Who is going to host it and how are you going to guarantee an audience for it?”

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30 Rock Bliss

I’m not sure the excerpts below can really convey the funny that is 30 Rock. I know Ann and I are late to the party here, but this story of the performers, writers, and others associated with a Saturday Night-like NBC show is brilliant. We just watched the first season on DVD, the second on on-demand, and it was like comedy crack or something. Alec Baldwin, Tina Fey, Tracy Jordan, and the others on this show are great choices. The plotlines are complex, yes, but also often surreal, as when Jordan hallucinates seeing this weird blue creature for an entire episode. I think this is what I really love about the show: it gets so darn strange at times. If you haven’t already seen 30 Rock, check it out.