Random Thought About the War

Sometimes I wonder what it means that more US soldiers died in the first few hours of D-Day, storming Omaha Beach, than have died in Iraq since the beginning of this present conflict.

Mind you, it doesn’t have to mean anything at all; Iraq and WWII are manifestly different conflicts. I could equally point out that the Allies suffered equivalent numbers of dead in the three-month execution of Operation Overlord as the US did in its entire 13-year involvement in Vietnam or its 3-year stint in Korea. It’s entirely possible that this is a statistic that has as much meaning as a baseball stat tracking how American League teams starting left-handed pitchers in domed stadiums perform historically during the third week of August. Which is to say useful for bar arguments and not much else.

Be that as it may, let me throw it out there: What does it mean that more US soldiers died in the first few hours of D-Day, storming Omaha Beach, than have died in Iraq since the beginning of this conflict? I genuinely don’t know; I was wondering if any of you might have thoughts on the matter.

What I’ll Be Doing in 2006

I’ll be writing science fiction, that’s what I’ll be doing, because I just agreed to a new three-book deal with Tor.

Included in the deal: Book three in the Old Man’s War series, tentatively titled The Last Colony, and a new two-book series which I’m very excited about but the details of which I want to keep under wraps for now. Suffice to say that structurally it’s going to provide me a very big challenge, and if I pull off I’m going to feel like the king of the friggin’ universe. No, I won’t tell you more. No!

Well, okay. Two words: dactylic hexameter.

No, no. I’m just funnin’ with you. About the dactylic hexameter, that is. I really did get the book deal.

Incidentally, for those of you who are curious: The Last Colony will indeed be the last "Old Man’s" book for at least a while. You know, until I get hard up for cash and dash off the prequels. I’ve already signed Jar-Jar Binks for those. Hey, he needs the work.

You may ask: What did I get for these books? I would tell you, but then you’d just tell me to shut up. Then I’d say, no, really, but then you’d tell me shut up again. Then I would say, I’m being as straight with you as I can, but you’d only tell me to shut up once more. I hope that answers the question.

Aside from basking in the knowledge that science fiction will be paying my mortgage payments next year, one of the happy things about this deal is that it continues my association with Tor Books. I don’t have to tell people here how pleased I’ve been with the support Old Man’s War has gotten from Tor, and how genuinely nice working with all the Tor folks has been. I’ve been happy to be a Tor author, so being so for three more books sounds like a fine plan to me.

This also means that you all will be getting science fiction from me through at least 2008. Bwa ha ha ha ha ha! There’s no escape! Unless, you know, you don’t buy the books. But please don’t do that. I promise to keep them as interesting as humanly possible.

And now I’m off to celebrate. We’re going to Friendly’s! Hey: Six year old kid. Work with me, here.

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Goth

Not yet seven, yet she’s got the pose all right for the artist picture at her first gallery exhibition. As I’ve noted before, you can’t teach that. You have to be born with that. And then she’s off to her first Dresden Dolls concert! It really doesn’t get any better than that.

But wait, there’s more! Here’s a small film (Quicktime, ~5MB) of the artist explaining her latest creation, "The Rollercoaster Ride of Terrifying Evil" (2005, whiteboard and marker), which incorporates into its theme butterflies, rollercoasters and Einstein-Rosen bridges. Makes Francis Bacon look like a puke in a bucket, it does. Naturally, the artist is interested to read viewer interpretations of the work.