Monthly Archives: July 2017

Making Hay While the Sun Shines

It’s not just an old proverb. It’s literally happening across the street from where I live. And yes, I like it that I write about high-tech futures from a place where it’s not at all unusual to see a Mennonite woman bundling hay using a tractor that’s probably as old as I am, and that […]

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The Big Idea: Michael F. Haspil

Getting older often gives you a perspective that younger people don’t have. But what happens when you’re immortal? What is your perspective then? It’s a question Michael F. Haspil has considered for his debut novel, Graveyard Shift. MICHAEL F. HASPIL: As human beings, we tell ourselves fictions to make it easier to cooperate one with […]

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Tonight’s Song I am Mangling on the Guitar

It’s a lovely song and one of my favorites from this band. I need to practice it a lot more.

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Thunderbolts and Lightning

So, this thunderstorm showed up today, and for about an hour there was nonstop thunder and lightning, so much so that I thought I might go out and see if I could capture some lightning in slow motion. How did that turn out? Well: I was pretty pleased with myself, I have to say. And […]

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New Books and ARCs, 7/14/17

Here’s a very fine Bastille Day selection of new books and ARCs that have come to the Scalzi compound in the last week or so. What’s ringing your bell here? Tell us in the comments!

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The Unsolicted Review: Poo-Pourri

Some members of the Scalzi Household — I won’t say which ones for privacy’s sake — occasionally do a thing called “pooping.” Look it up on Google if you’re not sure what that is. And while pooping is generally a laudable and healthy activity, it also sometimes leaves a certain odor. Someone I know recommended […]

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How to Screw Up a Triumphant Bestselling Debut

I’ll preface this by noting I think Milo Yiannopoulos is a real piece of shit human being who I’d be delighted to see tossed into the metaphorical oubliette of uncaring oblivion. But, when I saw some people having schadenfreude over Yiannopoulos’ book sales of Dangerous, which were reportedly only a fifth of his self-asserted sales […]

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The Big Idea: Jason LaPier

Home is where the heart is, but what does “home” mean, and does it mean the same thing for everyon. Author Jason LaPier has thoughts on this topic, and what it means for his latest novel Under Shadows, and the series of books to which it belongs. JASON LaPIER: The Dome Trilogy centers on three […]

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The Big Idea: Christopher Brown

The opening sentence of Christopher Brown’s Big Idea essay for Tropic of Kansas hits awfully close to home these days. Buckle in. CHRISTOPHER BROWN: What if the revolutions we watch ripping other countries apart were happening on our own streets? America as Syria, Ukraine, Venezuela—that core conceit behind Tropic of Kansas drove almost everything else […]

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My Twitter Muting Regime, July 2017

Twitter recently announced a few more options to mute the obnoxious and stupid on their service, a move I applaud both as a general step to cut down abuse on their service, and as a person who the obnoxious and stupid often try to bother on Twitter. The new mute options include muting accounts that […]

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The Big Idea: Jennifer Stevenson

  With a title that includes the phrase “coed demon sluts,” you might think that you know all you need to know about Jennifer Stevenson’s series of paranormal women’s fiction. Here’s Stevenson to make the argument that there’s more than meets the eye. JENNIFER STEVENSON: The foundation of this series is a question: “Aren’t you […]

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The Big Idea: Nancy Kress

Folks, in discussing her new novel Tomorrow’s Kin, author Nancy Kress has some bad news for you. It’s about your brain. And mine. And everyone’s. NANCY KRESS: Your mind does not work the way you think it does. You probably assume that you consider data and come to rational conclusions. But all too often, people […]

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Announcing: Don’t Live For Your Obituary, A Collection on Writing, in December, From Subterranean Press

Hey, did you know it’s been ten years since You’re Not Fooling Anyone When You Take Your Laptop to a Coffee Shop, my last collection of essays about writing and the writing life, debuted? That’s a pretty long time, especially when you consider everything that’s gone on — in the world, in publishing, and with […]

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The Big Idea: Sarah Kuhn

Weddings: Blessed occasion or battleground between the forces of good and evil? Why not both? Sarah Kuhn looks at the Big Day in this Big Idea for her novel Heroine Worship, and how it turns out to be a very fine setting for more than just “I do.” SARAH KUHN: I love weddings. I tear […]

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Meanwhile In Japan

The Japanese version of The End of All Things. Incidentally, I used the Google Translate app on this and it kind of made word salad on it. So we’re not quite yet in the world of automatic intelligible translations. At least for novels.

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Today’s New Books and ARCs, 7/7/17

Hey, look, another stack of new books and ARCs that have arrived at the Scalzi Compound. Just in time for the weekend! Tell us in the comments which looks compulsively readable to you.

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The Big Idea: Edward Willett

Edward Willett’s Big Idea post for his new novel The Cityborn references John Calvin, so allow me to suggest that you were predestined to find it and read it. But Willett might argue with me on that, as you will read (of your own free will!) below. EDWARD WILLETT: Some novels are born with big […]

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Today’s Very Quick Writing Tip

Written yourself into a corner? Go take a shower. No, seriously. Whenever I write myself into a corner (like, for example, yesterday), I go and take a long shower. And whilst I am standing there doing nothing other than having water spritzing onto my head and body, my brain works the problem. And more often […]

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The Big Idea: Sarah Beth Durst

Be warned: in today’s Big Idea post for The Reluctant Queen, author Sarah Beth Durst gets a little… bloody. SARAH BETH DURST: This book was born in blood. Seriously. I had just arrived at a writing retreat in the Poconos.  Beautiful place.  Every writer was given an adorable wood cabin nestled beneath pine trees.  I […]

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The Big Idea: In Search of Lost Time

  Got time for a Big Idea? Karen Heuler’s involves time itself — that having and getting of it, and what both mean for her latest work, In Search of Lost Time. KAREN HEULER: I started taking piano lesson in my mid-thirties because I fell in love with Chopin’s Preludes and I wanted to play […]

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