Monthly Archives: September 2018

1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Twelve: Travel

I never thought I would travel as much as I do today. This year, as an example, for work: Two book tours, comprising a total of 21 stops and just over three weeks. Conventions in Detroit and Phoenix and San Jose and Albuquerque. Festivals in Los Angeles and Nantes, France (with a side trip during […]

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The Whatever Digest, 9/12/18

It’s noisy here today. Shall we begin? *** First, I want to say I admire the spider who spun a web directly across the doorway to my patio. I admire the creature’s optimism in catching the really large prey. However, I saw the web before I walked into it, so I will not be cocooned […]

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Sunset, 9/11/18

And if you look closely, you can see the new crescent moon.

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1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Eleven: Personal Politics

In the past twenty years, I’m not sure my personal set of politics have changed all that much. I’m pretty sure what has changed is how people view them. And what would I say my politics are? Well, at the base of everything I believe that the goal of society should be to develop independently […]

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The Big Idea: Susan Forest and Lucas K. Law

Today’s Big Idea is a two-fer: editors Susan Forest and Lucas K. Law bring your their own — and their highly divergent — paths to co-editing Shades Within Us, a collection of short stories about migration. SUSAN FOREST: I am a fraud. I’ve never had the guts to move away from my hometown; yet as […]

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The Whatever Digest 9/11/18

Good morning! I slept in a bit and I feel pretty good about it. Let’s get to it. *** I debuted my new author photo on Twitter yesterday and it got the expected responses, including “tell the hairy guy in front to move so we can see the cat.” I remember taking the picture and […]

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1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Ten: Spouse

This one is easy: I’ve had the same spouse the last 20 years, and if I’m lucky I’ll have the same one twenty years from now, and if I’m really lucky I’ll the same one 20 years after that, too. If I have the same one 20 years after that, there’s probably been some amazing […]

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The Whatever Digest, 9/10/18

So many things to do today, so little time to do it! Let’s zoom through a few things. *** Hey, look, professional football has started its season. I realize this is an opener that most of you aren’t expecting from me, as I rarely evince any sort of interest in football or the NFL, but […]

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1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Nine: Weight

Well, this one isn’t as cheerful as some of the others have been. In 1998, I weighed a shade over 160 pounds. Today as I popped myself onto the scale, I was a smidge over 191 pounds. This is not great. This weight gain is on me, both literally and figuratively. As much as there […]

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1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Eight: Cars

For the weekend Whatever 20/20s, I’ve picked some topics I can be brief on, because, hey, it’s the weekend. Thus, for today, let me talk about my extremely boring history of cars. In 1998, I was still driving the very first car I ever owned: a white 1989 Ford Escort, which was a “Pony Edition” […]

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1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Seven: Friends

In 1998, I believed that I had probably made most of the friends I would ever make in my life.  At the time I didn’t think this was an entirely unreasonable assumption, nor was I depressed about it. I was 29 then, and there is some generally accepted wisdom which states that you’ll have most […]

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The Whatever Digest, 9/7/18

Like this neighbor cat cautiously peering onto our deck, let’s pop our head up to see what’s going on, shall we? *** Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing: Well, this has been a mess so far, if an entertaining one, if you’re the sort of person to be entertained by a car wreck. And of course […]

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1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Six: Presidents

So, let’s review the presidents we’ve had since 1998: A sexually harassing policy wonk, a genial imbecile, a malevolent imbecile, and Barack Obama. I don’t think we do presidents well. This assessment is bolstered by looking at the other five presidents who have been in office in my lifetime (in order, a crook, a placeholder, […]

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The Big Idea: Jaine Fenn

Autho Jaine Fenn starts this Big Idea piece with an admission — and then explains how she got around it for her new novel, Hidden Sun. JAINE FENN: Don’t tell anyone, but I’m a fraud. Most writers have bouts of imposter syndrome, but when it comes to writing scientifically rigorous fiction, I live in special […]

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The Whatever Digest, 9/6/18

An overcast morning here, and apparently it’s going to rain for (checks weather forecast) the next four days. Whee! Here’s what I’m thinking about today. *** That New York Times anonymous op-ed: Oh, you know the one, in which an unnamed senior official at the White House says they are part of the resistance inside the […]

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1998/2018: Whatever 20/20, Day Five: Social Media

Was there actually even social media in 1998? Oh, my, yes. There was. And it acted in pretty much the same way as it does now, in all the good and bad ways. The players were different, of course. In 1998, in place of Twitter and Facebook you had USENET and America Online (as two […]

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The Big Idea: Michael J. Martinez

In today’s Big Idea, Michael J. Martinez reminisces back on his college days, and how an offhand comment back then informs MJ-12: Endgame, the finale of his supernatural spy series. MICHAEL J. MARTINEZ: I went to a university with a heavy fraternity/sorority presence; the Greek houses were a major hub of campus social life. During […]

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The Whatever Digest, 9/5/18

Good morning! Let’s see what we’ve got today. That Nike Ad: In which Colin Kaepernick’s face gazes out whilst the phrase “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything” floats right around his nose. It’s been eliciting polarized responses, as it was almost certainly absolutely intended to do, and in the meantime is doing […]

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The Big Idea: Greg Van Eekhout

Yeah, okay, Greg Van Eekhout’s Big Idea piece for Voyage of the Dogs got me genuinely choked up. Read it and you’ll figure out why. GREG VAN EEKHOUT: Spoiler: I don’t kill off any of the dogs in this book.  Why not? Because I’m not a monster, that’s why not. Voyage of the Dogs is […]

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