It’s All True

Why yes, there’s a squidpunk anthology, and yes, I’m a contributor. My own piece is an epic poem, “Ode to a Grecian Squid,” a touching tale about the love between a cephalopod and Hephaestus, the Greek God of manufacture, which enrages a jealous Poseidon, all told in Ionic Hexameter. Really, it’s one of the best things I’ve ever written, about a squid, in verse. And that’s saying something. So go buy it, and if you don’t I will never ever ever speak to any of you ever again. Ever. Seriously, it may be the anthology that saves us all. After reading it, you will never eat calamari again. Unless they cook it really well. With sea salt and lemon on the side. Mmm… lemony squid.

29 Comments on “It’s All True”

  1. Yeah, Happy April 1st, John. :-)

    I just had my moment of shock when reading “General Motors to buy Specialized Bicycle Company”… Fun!

    And that begs the question — what’s the most embarrassing April Fools Joke that you’ve been taken in by?

  2. …it may be (the) anthology that saves us all.”

    A year from now? Dude, CERN is going to unloose squidtacular, Lovecraftian doom upon us all before then. But thanks for trying.

  3. ozarkwriter – I am a retired city dweller who bought a hobby farm years ago who enjoys the quiet and charm of rural living. I write a blog because it is way for my to express myself to someone other than my partner and cats. My interests are science fiction, travel, pop culture and technology. I am a proud geek and believe in live and let live.

    One must view anything on the web today with a jaundiced eye lest you be sucked into the vortex of fools.

  4. Ia Ia Sc’lzi Cthulhu fhtagn! Or something. I’m too tired to do anything original and Lovecraftian today. But even unread, I know your poetry is better than Lovecraft’s, (could anyone’s poetry be worse?) even if you’re writing about ordinary cephalopods…

    Going back to bed now.


  5. I thought John meant that it was “one of the best things he’s ever written about a squid in verse,” but then I recalled that when John uses commas, they mean exactly what he chooses them to mean – neither more nor less.

  6. “Ionic hexameter” tipped me off, which is a first for me, as I am so gullible it’s sad. *feels proud*

  7. Yeah, the “ionic hexameter” was a dead giveaway. No one’s written in that meter since Niels Bohr. Peramblic kilometer is much more the rage now.

    But enough about stylistics… Mr. Scalzi, is the whateveresque registration going to be unlocked today? I was hoping to sneak in, this being the first of the month.

  8. I snort-laughed when I saw the cover, especially the author list.

    Locus and SFScope have up some April Foolery as well.

  9. I wish this wasn’t an April Fools prank… I’d totally read it.

    My wife refuses to eat calamari because she thinks cephalopods are cool. I feel the same way about pigs. That’s right, no bacon.

    For maximum pretentiousness though, it really should be “Ode on a Grecian Squid”… I had a (pretty good) high-school English teacher who hated Keats with a passion, mostly based on that poem.

    But Dan Simmons seems to like him, so he can’t be all bad. Keats, that is.

  10. Mike @4:

    Thank you thank you thank you!

    That was amazing. The music, the narration, the plucky little buggers. Just perfect!

  11. Does that mean six ironies per line, evenly spaced? That’s an awfully demanding form. (Perhaps you could use some ironic substitutions, throw in a few garden-variety witticisms and a measure of biting sarcasm.)

  12. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me
    Chang, puppy wrangler!


    I know it’s a fake because PEter Watts would have to be on this one if it was for real. The man made his bone son squids!

  13. I just want to know why you used an octopus tentacle? Is that the plot of one of the stories? Does a plucky young squid need to save… the guitar? from the loathsome grasp of a wicked octopus overlord?

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