(Two punky steamers signing in the dealer’s room at the Steampunk con–thanks Carrie; more of her Steampunk con photos here.)
Thanks to Tero and Jukka for posting this week–I’ve really enjoyed their perspective on things. Expect them to continue through Saturday.
We had the privilege of being in San Francisco the night of November 4th, doing an event for the Steampunk anthology at Borderlands (great bookstore, wonderful staff) along with Richard Bottoms, one of the Steampunk convention organizers. Almost precisely when we ended, the election was called for Obama, and there were shouts and laughter from the street. Afterwards, the great and wise Jacob and Rina Weisman from Tachyon Books, along with their amazing managing editor Jill Roberts, took us out to dinner right across the street. Toward the end, we saw people running down the sidewalk outside, went to look, and saw that right at that intersection hundreds of people had gathered to celebrate. It was a wild, great way to end a stunning and emotional night. Jill blogged about it here.
I’ve already heard some people being cynical about Obama and his chances of creating real change. I think two things apply here. First, patience as Obama goes about undoing many of the horrible things W has done through executive order and additional patience as he works to get to a point where he can create true change. This will require reaching out to Republicans, but that doesn’t mean that Obama will necessarily rule from the center. It doesn’t mean he won’t get things done. But people have to give him some space and some time. This country is too much in the toilet for us to set things right in 100 days or even 1,000.
(Carrie, Shweta, me, Ann, Emily. Shweta went to Clarion in 2007 when we taught there. Emily went this year, and Caroline is working on a novel. We had a lovely time with them.)
Steampunk Con and San Fran
The Steampunk convention was great, with the staff taking very good care of us. There were the kinds of little snafus behind the scenes that always happen with first-time cons, but nothing to marr the experience for attendees. And I was impressed with how they adjusted throughout the weekend. The dealer’s room was absolutely amazing. The panels were informative, entertaining, and a lot of fun. It was also wonderful to meet Jake Von Slatt in person–just a great guy. Along with Gareth from Maker Magazine, Gail Carringer, Greg Broadmore, and so many more. I think we sold, through The Gilded Bat’s book dealer’s table, about seventy Steampunk anthos and a ton of Weird Tales.
San Francisco was also great. Took in my first planetarium show, which was awe-inspiring. Got to walk through the Haight-Ashbury area. Had dinner with Rusty and Ken from Omnidawn, as well as Kevin Standlee and Cheryl Morgan. Met Annalee and Charlie from io9 at Spork, too, which was wonderful. As well as the hardest-working man in genre, Rick Kleffel, and ex-Clarion students Justin and Keyan. Just a cool, cool trip all the way around.
Steampunk Conference in Riverside
Ann and I have accepted an invitation from organizer Howard Hendrix to attend a Steampunk conference at the university in Riverside, California, in early May 2009. Other attendees will apparently include Kathleen Ann Goonan, Tim Powers, and Greg Bear.
Predator/Aliens Novel Pitch Contest
Last week, io9 posted our latest art column, which includes a contest of possible interest to readers here. Just do a paragraph-long pitch, serious or funny, of a Predator or Aliens novel. Four lucky winners will receive my Predator novel, Brian Evenson’s aliens novel, and a Predator figurine. Deadline is Friday night.
Amazon’s Top 10 SF/F Books of 2008
Amazon has posted all of their editor lists. Here’s the top 10 SF/F, which I put together.
Nov. 7 to Dec. 7
I will not be on the internet via laptop or phone for the next month, as I finish up my novel. Ann will be checking my email in case something important comes up.