Friday, February 29, 2008

More from ConDFW

On Sunday morning, I caught breakfast in the hotel restaurant (it was actually quite good). Brad and Sue Sinor came by and we chatted for a while befre moving to the lobby, where the socializing continued. At 11 a.m I had an hour to share for a reading with Selena Rosen. I read from the rough first draft of my novel, "The Future is Hiding". It had the normal bumps due to the state of the draft, but was very well received - even Selena had a few chuckles.
I then went off on my series of three panels in four hours, all of which I moderated. All the panelists showed up for "Published in the Periodicals: The Sci-Fi/Fantasy Magazine Market" and it was well-attended. The audience dwindled a bit for "The Best Writers You’ve Never Heard Of". All the panelists were there except Richard Weber. I had made copies of the article in the current issue of IROSF on Howard Waldrop and handed them out.
The last panel at 3 p.m. on "The Best Writers You’ve Never Heard Of" was lots of fun. The audience swelled again, and the only panelist who missed it was Tom Knowles. It was a good ending.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Nebula ballot

Oh, on Saturday the SFWA announced what on this year's Nebula ballot. Here is the list:

Novels:

Odyssey - McDevitt, Jack (Ace, Nov06)
The Accidental Time Machine - Haldeman, Joe (Ace, Aug07)
The Yiddish Policemen's Union - Chabon, Michael (HarperCollins, May07)
The New Moon's Arms - Hopkinson, Nalo (Warner Books, Feb07)
Ragamuffin - Buckell, Tobias (Tor, Jun07)
Novellas:
"Kiosk" - Sterling, Bruce (F&SF, Jan07)
"Memorare" - Wolfe, Gene (F&SF, Apr07)
"Awakening" - Berman, Judith (Black Gate 10, Spr07)
"Stars Seen Through Stone" - Shepard, Lucius (F&SF, Jul07)
"The Helper and His Hero" - Hughes, Matt (F&SF, Feb07 & Mar07)
"Fountain of Age" - Kress, Nancy (Asimov's, Jul07)
Novelettes:
"The Fiddler of Bayou Teche" - Sherman, Delia (Coyote Road, Trickster Tales, Viking Juvenile, Jul07)
"Pol Pot's Beautiful Daughter" - Ryman, Geoff (F&SF, Nov06)
"The Evolution of Trickster Stories Among the Dogs Of North Park After the Change" - Johnson, Kij (Coyote Road, Trickster Tales, Viking Juvenile, Jul07)
"Safeguard" - Kress, Nancy (Asimov's, Jan07)
"The Children's Crusade" - Bailey, Robin Wayne (Heroes in Training, DAW, Sep07)
"The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate" - Chiang, Ted (F&SF, Sep07)
" Child, Maiden, Mother, Crone" - Bramlett, Terry (Jim Baen's Universe 7, June 2007)
Short Stories:
"Unique Chicken Goes In Reverse" - Duncan, Andy (Eclipse 1: New Science Fiction And Fantasy, Night Shade Books, Oct07)
"Titanium Mike Saves the Day" - Levine, David D. (F&SF, Apr07)
"Captive Girl" - Pelland, Jennifer (Helix: A Speculative Fiction Quarterly, Fall06 Issue #2)
"Always" - Fowler, Karen Joy (Asimov's, apr/may07)
"Pride" - Turzillo, Mary (Fast Forward 1, Pyr, February 2007)
"The Story of Love" - Nazarian, Vera (Salt of the Air, Prime Books, Sep06)
Scripts:
Children of Men - Cuaron, Alfonso & Sexton, Timothy J. and Arata, David and Fergus, Mark & Ostby, Hawk (Universal Studios, Dec06)
The Prestige - Nolan, Christopher and Nolan, Jonathan (Newmarket Films, Oct06 based on the novel by Christopher Priest)
Pan's Labyrinth - del Toro, Guillermo (Time/Warner, Jan07)
V for Vendetta - Wachowski, Larry & Wachowski, Andy (Warner Films, Mar06 Written by the Wachowski Brothers, based on the graphic novel illustrated by David Lloyd and published by Vertigo/DC Comics)
World Enough and Time - Zicree, Marc Scott and Michael Reaves, Michael (Star Trek: New Voyages, www.startreknewvoyages.com, Aug07)
Blink - Moffat, Steven (Doctor Who, BBC/The Sci-Fi Channel, Sep07)

Also awarded by SFWA: Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy:
The True Meaning of Smek Day - Rex, Adam (Hyperion, Oct07)
The Lion Hunter - Wein, Elizabeth (Viking Juvenile, Jun07 (The Mark of Solomon, Book 1))
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Rowling, J. K. (Scholastic Press, Jul07)
The Shadow Speaker - Okorafor-Mbachu, Nnedi (Jump At The Sun, Sep07)
Into the Wild - Durst, Sarah Beth (Penguin Razorbill, Jun07)
Vintage: A Ghost Story - Berman, Steve (Haworth Positronic Press, Mar07)
Flora Segunda: Being the Magickal Mishaps of a Girl of Spirit, Her Glass- Gazing Sidekick, Two Ominous Butlers (One Blue), a House with Eleven Thousand Rooms, and a Red Dog - Wilce, Ysabeau S. (Harcourt, Jan07)

Some notes from ConDFW

Had a nice time at ConDFW this weekend. As previously noted, I didn’t leave Mount Pleasant until about 4:20 p.m. I arrived at the Radisson at 6:15 p.m. Met Bill Ledbetter and Jerry Adams there and we ate dinner at a great Chinese restaurant across the street and down the block, with Jerry’s teenager daughter coming along. Had a real good visit.
We all went back to the hotel and parted. I attended the Buzz Blaster radio play, where I was shanghaied into voicing a small part as a time travel technician. Afterwards I made the rounds of the suites upstairs. The con suite on the 12th floor was well stocked and not too crowded. Ran into Bill and Jerry there (our paths would cross all evening).
I also visited the suites for Fencon and Armadillocon. Fencon suite was actually crowded, and of all the places I stopped, I chatted there the least. I had some nice chats in the Armadillocon suite. Learned a few things, too, from chatting with someone who was an engineer.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Plans for ConDFW

Well, ConDFW is this weekend. I will be there, at least starting Saturday night. Because of my job, I have to work Saturday, so after I put the Sunday paper to bed, I will be driving into Dallas. When I arrive I will catch dinner with Bill Ledbetter and some of his friends from the Dallas area.

They will getwork out me Sunday. I will moderating three panels in four hours Sunday. Here sre the descriptions:

12 pm Published in the Periodicals: The Sci-Fi/Fantasy Magazine Market

Hosted by Lou Antonelli, Jerry Davis, Linda Donahue, Rhonda Eudaly and J.M. McDermott
Industry pros discuss the getting published in magazines. Who is really looking? What are the really exciting markets? And what can you do to maximize your chances of escaping from the slush pile?

2 pm The Best Writers You’ve Never Heard Of

Hosted by Lou Antonelli, Melanie Fletcher, Frances May, Teresa Patterson and Richard D. Weber
Industry pros tell you about the hidden jewels that they wish got more press. Who is waiting to be discovered? Bring pen and paper to this one and walk away with a new reading list.

3 pm It Was His Time: Killing off Characters with Style

Hosted by Lou Antonelli, Rachel Caine, Melanie Fletcher, and Thomas W. Knowles, K. Hutson Price
Fans often hate it but even beloved characters sometimes have to bite it. Authors discuss what makes character death memorable. How can you kill your characters with panache? How can you make them really CARE about the fiendish fate awaiting your imaginary friends?

These are all in the second panel room, the Rose/Magnolia. I will also share a reading hour with Selena Rosn at 11 a.m. in the Live Oak room

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Two stories pass first reading

Got some positive news via email tonight. My story "Like Mother" has passed the first reading at Andromeda Spaceways In-flight Magazine and moves forward to the panel of editors.

Also, "The Devil We Know" - a collaboration between Ed Morris and myself - has gotten a second reading at Shroud magazine.

I received BOTH pieces of news at the same time when I checked my email after dinner tonight.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Four in a row

I got a phone call tonight from Joni Labaqui. the administrator of the Writers of the Future. She said I earned another honorable mention and asked my permission to post my name in their blog.

Of course, I said fine. She also said they'll send me a certificate. I told her I'll keep entering until I win or I'm ineligible (one more short story pro sale and I'd be out of contention).

This was for my story "When Hell's Bill Comes Due".

I think I'm setting a record of some kind with these four honorable mentions in a row. If I put those four stories together with the eight HMs I have gotten in the YBSF, I'd have a nice collection. I can call it "A Dozen Darn Good Stories That Weren't Quite Good Enough".

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Author Emeritus

I should note that Ardath Mayhar has been named as the Author Emeritus for 2008, to be recognized at the Nebula Awards. Although some people have disparaged the honorific as "Grandmaster Lite", it can be a nice way to recognize an author who has a very spectable body of work behind them in their career. Honoring Mayhar this year is a stroke of brilliance insofar as Joe Lansdale is the toastmaster. They are very close and I once heard Mayhar during a talk say Joe was one of her many "adopted grandchildren".

She's a sweet-appearing lady who is a lot tougher than she looks and in her heyday would throw you over her shoulder if your crossed her. She had written a lot of good sf over the years, along with a fair amount of fantasy. She is universally liked and well-regarded among speculative fiction authors.

I met Mayhar at the first Fencon a few years ago; our paths haven't crossed since then. Her health hasn't been the greatest and I think there's been at least one case where I attended a con where she was a guest but couldn't make it. I'm sure Joe will take her to Austin.

I don't recal, if the SFWA had named the Grandmaster for this year.

Monday, February 11, 2008

"Off the Hook"

I recently got my copies of Dark Recesses No. 9 in the mail. Dark Recesses, which is based in British Columbia, apparently was on-line for its first eight issues, but went to print with its latest issue. As I have said before, I am very proud of "Off the Hook", the collaboration between Ed Morris and myself.

One thing that puzzled me is that the return label on the media mail envelope I got had an Austin address. I know the DR publisher said on the web site it was NOT a POD publication. I wonder if it was published in Austin?

Another possibility is that it's the address of a remailer. I asked both Howard Waldrop and Jayme Blaschke and neither recognized the address.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Lansdale will be Toastmaster

I saw this past week that the SFWA has named Joe Lansdale as toastmaster for this year's annual banquet. The Nebula Weekend will be the last one in April. I guess Joe is seen as the most typically Texan author - though my first reaction was, why didn't they pick Howard? (Waldrop). Neither of them belong to the SFWA, btw. But Joe's stories are more consistently set in Texas. Of course, I think Howard doesn't get the recognition that he deserves - but no one does. He's been called "The Best Author You've Never Heard Of."

I always kinda laugh up my sleeve when some critic calls me a "Texas author", since I didn't move here until I was 28. Howard wasn't born in Texas, but he grew up here, and besides he was born in Mississippi (as opposed to say, Massachusetts).

I talked to Jerry Wright (of Bewildering Stories fame) on the phone a couple of days ago about resurrecting SentinelSF. He commented that, even after living in Texas 23 years, I haven't completely lost my East Coast accent.

Well, Joe should have them rolling in the aisles with his dry and outrageous humor. I hope I can go, at least for Saturday, but that will involve trading off with somebody at work, since I normally work Saturdays.

Here is the video of the day. I was flabbergasted when I found it, because this song is in the novel I am currently working on, and the video was posted after I started writing the story.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

More positive comments on "Fermi's Fraternity"

I mentioned in my posting on Jan. 18 that Rich Horton had some nice things to say about Fermi's Fraternity, my story that ran last year in Planetary Stories. I recently saw there were also some positive comments in the Planetary Stories letters column:

"Fermi's Fraternity….Lou Antonelli….This one was fascinating. Some really good ideas here that will cause the reader to pause and think. Could it happen?" - Donald Sullivan

"Fermi's Fraternity" by Lou Antonelli is fascinating and very well written but stops much too soon. I want to know what happens next. Is this the first installment of a series for PLANETARY STORIES? I hope so." - Curt Phillips

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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