Monday, November 29, 2004

Away We Go

I dropped the contract for Asimov's in the mail Saturday. Actually, they ask you to sign two contracts; they'll send you one back later. I used two special pens for the contracts. One was a Cedar Hill Sentinel advertising pen; the Cedar Hill Sentinel was a newspaper I owned and operated from 1995 to 2001. After it went out of business - and I had to get a real job - I had the time to start writing science fiction in 2002. I saved one last pen for these past few years, and vowed I would use it if I ever got a contract to sign.

The other pen is a Bic medium fine point, the subject of my story "Pen Pal", which ran at RevolutionSF in July. Here's a link:

http://www.revolutionsf.com/article.html?id=2303

Friday, November 26, 2004

Lucky Lou and Three on a Match

Well, I mentioned I got a contract for my story from Asimov's on Tuesday. It was my first. Thursday, I checked my e-mail and found a contract from Alienskin. They've bought a flash story. Wow! Two contracts in a week!
Admittedly, the fee from Alienskin is nominal, but it's a nice ego boost. Plus they want to run the story in their December-January bi-monthly issue. That means that, with stories ready to run at RevolutionSF and Astounding Tales, I will have three stories published at the same time.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Thankgiving Thots

Well, it being Thanksgiving, lots of people will post on various boards and/or blogs and discuss what they have to be thankful for.

I could list the usual - health, job, friends - but since this s my blog for my life as a science fiction writer - my public face, as it were - I guess what I should list are the stories that have been published so far.

I mean, back n August 2002, I literally had no idea I was any kind of competent fiction writer. Here I am, just a little over two years later, on Thanksgiving 2004, with a contract from Asimov's on my desk. Boy am I thankful!

So here, as some kind of public record, is a list of the stories that have seen the light of day, so far:

2003

Silvern - RevolutionSF - June.
Silence is Golden - RevolutionSF - August.
Comes the Juju Man - GateWay Science Fiction - December.
S.P.P.A.M. - Bewildering Stories - December.

2004

Rome, If You Want To - Surprising Stories - May.
Pen Pal - RevolutionSF - July.
I Got You - Bewildering Stories - July.
Doppelgangster - Bewildering Stories - September.

I have two stories that should run shortly. "The Rocket-Powered Cat" should be published at RevolutionSF in a week or two, and Astounding Tales is slated to publish "Circe in Vitro" in their December edition.

And I have the two stories already accepted for 2005 at Asimov's and Andromeda Spaceways.

I've opened a "wing" at the web site I run, www.cedarhllsentinel.com, for my news, and I'm also going to start posting reprints of my stories there. Right now, S.P.P.A.M. is up.

That story has some history for me. Back in April 2003, Gardner Dozois sent it back to me, but he wrote that it was better than 99% of the stuff in his slush pile, and he thought I had potential. That was really encouraging, and helped me keep my chin up, because 99% of what you get when submitting stories is rejection.

Almost a year later, I hit paydirt with a story that made the grade with Gardner.

I kept shopping "S.P.P.A.M." around, and in the meantime Jerry Wright at Bewildering Stories had been very encouraging to me and had a lot of nice things to say, so I decided that if the story didn't find a home by the end of the year, I'd let Jerry have it. So that's where it was published.

Its nice and chilly this morning here East Texas. Last night I had to light the Dearborn. Temperature dropped down to 37 overnight - almost a frost. I've been waiting for the cold, to help kill all the mold and crap that's been floating in the air.

It's a crisp, fall day for Thanksgiving. OK, now time to chow down!

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Lou's News and Views

Well, got through another Thanksgiving publication schedule. Thanksgiving is always a tough time at weekly papers - which almost all publish on Thursday - because you have to move your press deadline up a full day to get the paper out early (no mail on Thursday, right?)

Plus, I have basketball games to cover both Monday AND Tuesday night - very unusual to have games on consecutive nights, but the coach wanted to get some games in before the Turkey break.

As busy as it was, I got good news Tuesday in the mail - my contract arrived from Dell for my story. I'm going to check it out thoroughly and hopefully get the two signed copies in the mail Friday. My story is 3,900 words, and Asimov's pays 6 cents a word.
I also have to send a copy of the story on disk back with the contract.

When Gardner Dozois accepted the story, he told me to e-mail a copy to Brian Bienowski, but I'm not surprised they want some kind of disk. Can't have too many copies of a future Hugo winner, can we?

(wink, wink)

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Go web it takes you...

You know, as a lifelong journalist, I've never been in love with blogs. It seems too much like work. That's what I do for a living. I see a lot of writers like to keep them - I guess it's because they don't have enough places to write, or they don't write often enough. Of course, I write plenty in my "real" job - or eating job, as East Texas writer, Ardath Mahyar would say - and I also wrote a lot on the side (right now, I have 22 stories in about 18 slushpiles around the world).

However, I also know they can be a handy tool to keep information before the public - and yes, fans. So I think I'm going to start posting more regularly.

Latest reviews

In a spare, swift, convincing narrative style, conveying in a deadpan voice a wide array of sometimes Paranoid suppositions about the world, Antonelli juxtaposes realities with very considerable skill, creating a variety of Alternate Worlds, some of them somewhat resembling the constructions of Howard Waldrop, and making some sharp points about American history, race relations, dreams, and occasional nightmares in which the twentieth century goes wrong. [JC]

---From the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction

A better path develops for a distraught man in “Double Exposure” by Lou Antonelli (debut 6/11 and reviewed by Frank D). Jake is about to end it all. He has been trying to keep his high maintenance wife happy for decades and has needed to embezzle to satisfy her spending habits. Now, on the verge of indictment and abandoned by his spouse, he buys a gun. Before he pulls the trigger, he spies a Kodak one-day photo hut. Curious, he pulls up to the window. They are holding pictures of him and his last girlfriend from 30 years before. The package is a lot thicker than it should be.

Double Exposure” is listed as an Alternative History story but I would classify it as a Magical Realism tale. It is set as a second chance tale, a look into a life that should have been. The author is inspired by his memories of the old photo huts (I remember them) and of their disappearance. A cool idea (photos of another life), one that I could imagine would make for a great anthology.

- Frank Dutkiewicz, Diabolical Plots

Great White Ship”: A traveler stuck waiting for a flight strikes up a conversation with an old airline employee. The Old Timer tells him a story of a Great White Airship that arrives from a most unusual destination. The story of a craft from an alternate reality and how it got there is only the precursor to the final act.

This is one of my favorite stories from this site. I have a great passion for lighter-than-air craft and their potential as a future means of transport, which opens the story. The author uses this speculation to launch into an engaging tale. As fascinating as the main story line is, the alternate history premise that accompanies it is just as worthwhile. This story was well written and very well thought out. It is well worth the read.

Recommended.

- James Hanzelka, Diabolical Plots

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