Back From Penguicon

Lovely time. Now very tired. Planning to get to sleep early.

How was your weekend?

28 Comments on “Back From Penguicon”

  1. 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!


    My friend Roberto came and taught a workshop and a mater class and kicked our asses. In a loving yogic way. The weather was nice and the food was nicer. Ate at my favorite restaurant in town and slept in.

    And BSG kicked ass this weekend!

  2. Went out and took a bunch of pictures at provincial game sanctuary on Saturday. Heard some a**holes blazing away at ducks with shotguns– out of hunting season. Still, many of the pictures turned out well.

    Also, yesterday and today were the spring’s first two smog days. Huzzah. Not.

  3. Feel bad for people in Calgary Alberta when I heard they got or were expecting 20 more feet of snow… while I was basking in sunlight and temps that reached 20 digrees… SO WARM and nice.

    Bought 2 new chairs to put out the back, nice padded rockers with ottomans…

    Other then that I worked on saturday… I work in a call center taking calls from people who want to cancel their cable services… some days good, some days bad. Saturday was a good day.

    Hope you catch up on your sleep and hope we here more about penguicon….


  4. Good. I uh, spent it the same way you did.
    Well, Saturday anyways.

    I had read the alternate history story before, but, well, your voice reads it funnier than the voice in my head.

  5. I just came home from Romantic Times Convention. Saw your name on the Winner’s List during the Awards Luncheon and thought “Hey, is he HERE?” to accept his award? Congratulations again, Scalzi. Crazy times where I was.

  6. Went to NYC for my paternal aunt’s birthday and first night of passover at my maternal aunt’s house.

    The seder was excellent. Gefilte fish, matzoh ball soup, brisket and lemon jelly roll.

  7. Went to a concert by Vixy and Tony. Seriously butt-kicking filk rock. (For them as don’t know, that’s not a typo, google it.) Got the new album autographed. Was asked to take pictures by Vixy herself. :) Much fun.

  8. I have been reading “Little Brother” by Corey Doctorow. I got the arc from PNH at Tor. Freakin’ sweet.

  9. Did a brake job with my son, teaching him he can either give his hundreds of dollars to some auto repair shop or get dirty and do it himself. Great fun, actually, the weather was terrific and so was my boy. Plus my daughter came back from her first post college job for a visit. It was a kid filled weekend!

    Ya’ll just be sure and not look at the grease under my fingers, deal?

  10. Meh. The high of getting to celebrate a friend’s NSF Fellowship award yesterday was counterbalanced by my fiancee falling quite ill today. Oh well. Chicken soup all around!

  11. I just finished my four day dayshift rotation at the coal mine where I work so my weekend involved many tons of snow, coal dust and swearing at electricians. At east 260 tons of swearing at electricians.

  12. Wait — no one told you?

    The Last Colony won RT’s Reviewers’ Choice Award for Best Sci Fi Novel.

    I’m glad to hear you at least had other plans. I would have felt like a *real* ass if you’d been home twiddling your thumbs all weekend.

  13. Stephanie:

    Well, it’s not in my mail queue — which is not to say that notification wasn’t sent. I might have accidentally deleted it. If I had known I had won the award, I’d’ve probably made the trip to Pittsburgh to receive it. But I had a fun weekend as it was.

    Also: Neat! That’s really cool. I’ve always thought Romantic Times has done a good job with reviewing SF, so to get that award is a really nice accolade.

    Is the winner’s list up somewhere? I see the nominee list on the RT site, but not the list of winners.

  14. It’s probably not up yet, John. I’ll send you a link when I get it. I was wondering why you weren’t at there but figured you were busy. I had lunch with Caitlin Kittredge, whose book was featured on your Big Idea. She was still excited that Krissy loved it. Congrats again.

  15. Saturday day:
    Cruised around the local hills and valley’s enjoying the green scenery and great weather.

    Saturday night:
    Watched UFC 83. BBQ’d drank beers and AWSOME bloody mary’s with my friend.

    Packed stuff for this weekends move.
    Because moving is soooo fun!

  16. Saturday, earned myself a job-offer (which arrived today) over the phone. Began to HONESTLY fret about the fact that I need to move THIS WEEKEND, and haven’t yet figured out what city I’m moving to, much less obtained housing there.

    Sunday I did a bunch of cleaning, and HONESTLY started packing. Also took about 3 hours of walking around the city. The weather was fantastic, but by bedtime my feet were writing really unpleasant letters of complaint. I think they would have minded less if I had slept Saturday night, or Sunday morning… or some time.

    In case you’re wondering, no I didn’t accept that job offer yet. Though I’m awfully tempted to. (They don’t offer good money, and I have another interview on Wednesday, and possibly one tomorrow (I got an email requesting a phone interview, and I said “Yes, call when you’d like to.” or some time.)) I really wish this crunch of people wanting to talk to me (and offer me jobs) had happened 3 weeks ago. I was job-hunting then too… but NOOOO, nobody wants to talk to you until you’re actively considering returning to boring old America!

  17. Had a blast at Comic Con NY. Met so many wonderful people, had amazing and fascinating conversations, bought way too many comics, realized that I need to bite the bullet and buy a digital camera…. details on my blog, if anyone’s interested.
    Also, congratulations, John!

  18. I went to some kind of geek thing in Michigan. There were a bunch of geeky people there doing geeky stuff, plus a guy cooking an entire herd of cows in the parking lot.

    There was also a gathering of interesting folks having breakfast on Sunday morning, with much gossip and so forth. You should have been there! (Oh wait, you were.)

    It was good to see you again, and I’m glad I finally got to meet Krissy.

  19. Not bad. Didn’t get a lot done, but I did get some done. The sort of weekend where I wouldn’t have minded another day or two.

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