Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Back from Fencon

Because my current job requires me to work Saturdays, I was only to attend Fencon briefly. I left work Saturday about 3:30 p.m. and got to the Crown Plaza Hotel in Addison two hours later.

I checked in - quickly - and took a look at the souvenir program book, which included my story "Body by Fisher". The artist did a nice black and white wash drawing of a Old Delta Royale 88 - the same car that figures in the story - and it looked great. Sunday I bought an extra ten copies to give to co-workers, family members and friends.

I caught Carol Nelson Douglas at the autograph table just as she was leaving. I had promised a friend at work who is a big Midnight Louie fan that I would pick up a book. Pulled that off a the nick of time. I then attended Connie Willis' Guest of Honor talk at 6 p.m.

Willis was charming and funny. I found it very interesting to hear what went into her becoming both such a lover of literature and such an accomplished author. I later had the opportunity to chat with her both in the hallway and the con suite on Sunday.

Willis was wearing an "Impeach Bush" button - a rarity in Texas - and Sunday I mentioned the same thing I said to Gardner Dozois when I met him at Philcon in 2003: President Bush is not unanimously popular where I live. In East Texas, he is considered too LIBERAL.

Willis started to profess disbelief, but a local author sitting next to her jumped in and confirmed my tale.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Sentinel S-F Issue No. 5

The fifth issue of Sentinel S-F has been published. It has a flash fiction theme, with five stories from 173 to 1,140 words. They are:

Something Apollinous Rhodius Left Out - Berrien Henderson
The Case for RFID - Sue Lange
Don't Forget to Write - Dan Pearlman
Spin - Paul Carlson
The Scrawl of Cthulhu - David Marshall

Hope you enjoy the stories.
www.cedarhillsentinel.com

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Fencon schedule

I got my schedule of panels for Fencon. Because my curent job requires that I work on Saturdays, I'm only available for panels for Sunday, but I'm very happy with the panels they gave me, to wit:

Sunday 10:00 AM Second Stage
Career Crisis and Changing Course
Description: How can a writer reinvent him/herself? Alternatives in careers.

Sunday 11:00 AM Main Stage
TechnoPeasants Unite!
Description: Discussion of IPSTP Day and the giving away of books,music, art, etc. to stimulate interest and sales.

Sunday 12:00 noon Programming 3
Reader Feedback *
Description: Non-writers discuss what they read and why.
Manifest: For non-writers to discuss what they read and why. Will also be audience participation.

Sunday 1:00 PM Main Stage
Face-Off: The Difference Between Male and Female Writers *
Description: So, do women and men really approach a scene in different ways? Find out with our panel of writers.
* = Panel moderator.

I will head into Dallas as soon as I finish with work on Saturday. With luck I will be in Dallas by 5 or 6 Saturday evening. giving me time to attend suite parties.**

To be fair to other cons, I'm not accepted any more guest appearances until next year when I have some vacation time accumulated. This Fencon is the last con I had scheduled before I took my current job on July 31.

**And no, Bobby, I will NOT be getting a massage...

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

In the mail

I finished up "Holley with an E", my sequel to "The Witch of Waxahachie" and dropped it in the mail yesterday. It's one of my few stories to come in as a novellette - the final product was 8,100 words. "Ed Sullivan Show Magic", another story in the same story arc, is at another magazine right now.

I'm pondering which story outline I need to work on now, but "The Dragon of Dallas" may be moving up in the line. I have some previously written material - which arose from the conceit of what it would be like if a high school athletic team who had a dragon as a mascot had a REAL dragon on the sidelines - that may provide a hook.

With both the publication of "The Witch of Waxahachie" and the Nebula Awards weekend - in Austin - happening in April, I'm trying to get as many stories lined up to peddle.

I dropped my quarterly entry for the Writers of the Future Contest in the mail today.

A conversation today reminded me of how far away from my hometown I have wandered to live, and how - although I wouldn't have thought it way back when, when I was a kid - how much I miss it. Sometimes I get real nostalgic. Thus this video.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Latest story, and an honorable mention.

The latest issue of Planetary Stories is on line - Shelby Vick and company have published "Fermi's Fraternity". Here's a link:

http://www.planetarystories.com/fermi.htm

It's my 34th story published since June 2003.

I received word today that I was an Honorable Mention (again) for the Writers of the Future Contest - this time for the quarter ending June 31st. This means I finished in the top 15% of the quarterly entries.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Pleasant visit to the mailbox

I hope everyone who reads this had a nice Labor Day weekend. I actually went out and bought a small grill. I fired it up Monday and cooked up some hot dogs and sausage. The results were more than satisfactory, and we'll probably do that again real soon.
The Hugo awards were announced Saturday at the WorldCon at Yokohama, Japan. It was nice to see - in the report that was released after the voting was announced - that I was a runner-up again for the Campbell Award. I got four nominations. Last year I had five. It's nice to know a few people thought of me when they sent in their ballots.
It was a productive weekend in that I finished the first draft of "Holley With an E". It's only the second story I've ever written that clocks in at novellette length; it currently stands at 9,300 words. This is the second sequel I've written to "The Witch of Waxahachie".
AND speaking of "The Witch of Waxahachie", I got a pleasant post-Labor Day surprise today when I got my check for the story in the mail today from Eric Flint. At eight cents a word, that's the most money I've ever made for a story.

Latest reviews

"It’s possible that you haven’t run into the stories of Lou Antonelli. Since 2003, he’s been publishing delightful short tales of alternate history all over the nooks and crannies of the SF world. Thanks to Fantastic Books, we now have 28 of these little gems in one place.

"Many of Antonelli’s stories have an unexpected twist ending. And many of them are what he calls “secret history” stories, which aren’t exactly alternate history—they’re set in our familiar history, but there’s always some element that contemporary observers missed. " - Don Sakers, The Reference Library, Analog July-Aug. 2014

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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