Connect the Connect, Link the Link, Debate the Dragon


BUT NOW IT IS AS YOUR LATE-NIGHT LINKSMONGER (morning/mid-afternoon for peoples in other places) MORNING LINKS-MONGER (evening/mid-afternoon for peoples in other places). GOT NO PLACE TO GO? TRAPPED UNTIL MORNING? HANG OUT WITH ME AND THE LINKS…

First off, the debate over the existence of dragons continues unabated over at Omnivoracious, with kids still posting comments on my piece from March 2008 on How to Raise and Keep a Dragon, including:
“does anybody know blake baker?????? i’m toatly in love with him. he reminds me of a dragon but i can’t pcture what kind. post back if you know him.” And: “Me and my friend olivia sent a letter to the seller of the mushussu dragon about the price on them!! olivia’s mom might let her buy one!!!!!! how much were the dragons you bought? Me and olivia are dieing to get a letter back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” (Believe it or not, I left off some exclamation marks.)

[update 7:30am] I just posted my Graphic Novel Friday feature:
“Three really cool comics/graphic novels came in recently: The Raven and Other Poems by Poe as illustrated by Gahan Wilson, Lewis Trondheim and Fabrice Parme’s Tiny Tyrant (vol. 1), and Sturm, Arnold, and Frederick-Frost’s Adventures in Cartooning. No one really saves the world in these books, although there is one pretty entertaining quest. There are no superheroes taking on super-villains. No, instead there’s a lot of talent, humor, and imagination on display. All three made me smile, and I think sometimes that’s more important than being blown away.”

Seems to me Lane Robins ought to be getting more attention for her grim and difficult, in the best sense, political drama/fantasy:
“Unfortunately, the novel doesn’t appear to be getting much play in fantasy circles–it doesn’t fit in with the current “supernatural thriller” fantasy that’s dominating bestseller lists. It also doesn’t fit in with the avant garde and “literary” fantasy that often dominates critical discussion. Kings and Assassins deserves your attention, though–it’s not cookie cutter fiction.”

I interviewed the editor of The Best of Simon and Kirby from Titan Books right before Memorial Day, saying of the book:
“Not to mention, this book is flat-out beautiful, with a wrap-around reproduction of pages from “Stuntman: The Rescue of Robin Hood” printed on the boards, in addition to the Captain America [Fighting American?] dustjacket. The end papers feature a wonderful bar fight panorama, rendered in a blue just light enough to make the scene fade into a kind of chaotic pattern appropriate for its decorative purpose, but also just dark enough to be enjoyed in its details, too. I collect a variety of first- and limited-edition books, and it takes a lot for me to be impressed, but The Best of Simon and Kirby just has that special something in the execution that makes my brain tingle.”

I meant to link to Matt Cheney’s great piece on Delany earlier:
“It can be interesting to chart what changes and what doesn’t in Delany’s ideas, but it is equally important to look at what changes in the culture from his earliest essays to his most recent, and how that is reflected in his analyses. One of the many things Delany has given us is a record of what it was like to be thinking about writing, reading, and living in a time when the perception of those things by the broader culture changed.”

Sir Tessa on why write (why not?; i’m the beside-the-point one btw):
“Another writing friend, after mulling over the question of why we write if we do not, in fact, love it, mused that it was almost an obsessive compulsive act, which I guess could be true of some writers. What really resonated with me, however, was the comment that writing made them feel like a better, more functional, person: Writing makes me not want to kill myself quite so much.”

Jeffrey Ford gets fluffed by one of City of Saints’ crazier illustrators:
“The letter is signed by Mr. Durkee-Mower, and beneath the salutation and his title is a line drawing of two children bathing in a tub of Fluff. One has a large spoon and there is a rubber duck floating between the kids. The DVD that was in the box was Van Beuren Classic Cartoons–1 Full Hour of Cartoons. Also, on the canister of Fluff, there is affixed a sticker with a drawing of a zombie. On the blog I’ve recently had a post about Fluff and a little later one about George Romero’s The Crazies, hence the conflation of Fluff and the living dead.”

Warren Ellis burns like an incandescent fire god or babbling corner crazy:
“Therefore, UK booksellers are not yet reduced to the condition of their American cousins, who have gone beyond firing staff and are now using their bodies for food and heat. They fear the Kindle like it was the breath of the devil’s cock on their shoulder – despite the fact that Mr Bezos’s clever little board has probably not sold a million units yet. Because, as any American bookseller will shriek at you while gouging their own forearms open with Stanley knives, only 34 Americans actually buy and read books. As far as they’re concerned, the Kindle emerged directly from Satan’s mangina and will doom them all.” (took from here)

Sherman Alexie on the Kindle, in an Amazon book blog post:
“One of the incendiary comments (maybe the only one) from BookExpo this year was Sherman Alexie’s remark on an author panel that when he saw a woman on his plane reading a Kindle he “wanted to hit her.” (He said the “expensive reading devices” (the Times’ words) were “elitist” (his word), and he hasn’t yet let his books be digitized.) Fair enough (though those metal-backed devices might double pretty well as a weapon if the Kindle reader wanted to fight back)–we Seattleites know our neighbor Alexie as a heartfelt, shoot-from-the-hip advocate for what he loves (e.g. the former SuperSonics) and hates.”

BLDGBlOG with a fascinating piece on water and terroir:
“The concept of terroir has its origins in French winemaking, as a means to describe the effect of geographic origin on taste. As a shorthand marker for both provenance and flavor, and as a sign of its burgeoning conceptual popularity, it has spread to encompass Kobe beef, San Marzano tomatoes, and even single-plantation chocolate. But can water have terroir? What about the influence of the earth on water?”

MaxBoxing has an interesting two part article on The Boxing Business and the Black Boxer:
“Across the board, it’s tougher to develop and nurture marquee figures in the sport. The legendary Sugar Ray Leonard, who was a world-wide superstar points out, ‘The presence of name fighters are slim. You don’t have the same kind of household names that were around from the 70’s to even my era. There’s not an abundance of names or personalities or people or fighters that you know. It’s shifting towards the Hispanic market. I think that for some reason that you’re not seeing a lot of fighters of African-American descent who are famous.'”

I’m relinking to this post still on my main page to bring your attention to the hilariousness of Felix Gilman, the funniest man I know:
“on my desk right here i have a signed first edition of m. john harrison’s The Centauri Device. i keep it in a 6-by-6 inch cage in which it cannot stand up or turn around, and i force-feed it ruthlessly in hopes of fattening its liver. what are you going to do about it, huh, Remic? nothing, that’s what.”

…And I’m relinking to this post to again make you aware of the Gilman Funny:
“Imagine a hypothetical Writer C, whose overall strategic plan is trying not to think about publicity stuff because it’s too stressful oh god oh no. Writer C organizes an event consisting of sitting at home in a dark room freaking out. It draws no people and results in no sales; on the other hand it involves very little legwork, unless and until Writer C runs out of cigarettes. My question is: oh god oh no arrggghhh.”

Aidan Doyle has published an article on this year’s Clarion South:
“It was great getting to know the tutors. Some of them had been raised on the same diet of TV shows I had, and others even shared my fondness for evil monkeys. One of the most memorable experiences was Jeff VanderMeer’s first critique session. Some students, aware of Jeff’s love of the weird, organized a sock puppet ambush. A tired and jetlagged Jeff faced a sea of students—and their decorated socks. Later, he admitted that we had broken his brain.”

Finally, there’s kerfuffle about reviewing in genre again going on. I apologize for Evil Monkey’s part in it, and will not be linking to any of it. I loves all of you. Well, most of you. Except you over there, stinky. But not because you smell.

I leave you with the Obits, who used to be the Hot Snakes. Kinda.


  1. Hellbound Heart says

    ok, lotsa links that i may have a look at…

    but i have to say it, it looks like you have a giant deflated testicle on your head, cobber……

    that image/thought will haunt my dreams as i now retire to bed…zzzzzzzzzzz…

    nighty night!

  2. says

    Obits, huh? You like the Night Marchers, Jeff? It’s probably more accurate to say that THEY used to be Hot Snakes, really.