Saturday, March 31, 2012

Progress report

No new fiction writing done this week, I've had all my free time taken up with spring-related projects both at home and work. I still have ten stories sitting around in slush piles out there. I also have what I think is a particularly good set of story ideas hanging on the bulletin board.

It was good to see the publication of "The Centurion and the Rainman" at Buzzy Mag this week. I'm waiting to see when Daily Science Fiction schedules the two stories they have bought from me.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

AggieCon post-mortem

With the debut of Buzzy Mag, I got sidetracked and didn't mention anything about my visit to AggieCon this weekend. I barely spent 24 hours in College Station - I arrived Saturday at 5:30 p.m. and was on the road back to Mount Pleasant by 3 p.m. I had to work a half-day Saturday, which is what led to the late start.

Both panels, the one Saturday night and the one Sunday morning, were enjoyable. I think both had maybe a half dozen people at each. The literary track at this con was pretty insipid, it was obvious the con was geared much more towards fandom. The students running it were nice as could be, but there were only three authors on each panel I was on, and both times Katy Stauber was the second panelist. Tom Knowles was the third on Saturday and Martha Wells on Sunday. The people who attended the panels seemed to enjoy them.

I visited both the ArmadilloCon and Fencon room parties Saturday night. They were also sparsely attended.

There was an authors table at the very back of the dealers' room. Most of the time I was there with only a couple of other people. The dealers' room really showed the focus of the con, I think there was maybe one vendor selling books, his own. I sold and signed a couple of books myself.

For the amount of time I spent, I'm happy. I'm also grateful they comped my room. But they should think about either beefing up the literary track, or dropping it. Word of mouth is not going to encourage authors in the future.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Comments on "The Centurion and the Rainman"

So far all the comments in for "The Centurion and the Rainman" at Buzzy Mag have been positive:

Phil Einhorn - 03/26/2012 at 4:06 pm: Will we be be seeing more of Doncard? It appears he just got this new job:) Honestly, I enjoyed the story and feel it is an introduction to life in Magtown. I liked it.

T. Glenn Bane - 03/27/2012 at 9:03 pm: I love hard boiled cop dramas. You have hit a neo-noir/pulp vibe that I enjoy. Good Stuff.

The character of Corp. Doncard is a tribute to former South African policeman Donald Card, who was a close friend of the late journalist Donald Woods (whose books were the basis of the movie "Cry Freedom!" about the life of Steve Biko) and who played a crucial role in subverting the apartheid regime during his later career in law enforcement. Here is a photo from 2004 of a meeting between Card and Nelson Mandela. Card himself was the subject of a biography, "Tangling the Lion's Tale", published in 2007.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Buzzy Mag makes impressive debut

The inaugural issue of the new ezine Buzzy Mag debuted today and it features my Urban Fantasy "The Centurion and the Rainman". This is my first publication of 2012.

I knew from the way this outfit treated me they are classy. They paid me a pro rate, and months ago, and had a real pro go through my story with a fine-toothed comb.

This roll-out issue has a half dozen strong stories, and they've given some newcomers and up-and-coming authors slots. In addition to myself, the authors featured are Ken Liu, Michaele Jordan, J.C. Hemphill, Louis Baum, Teresa Bane & T. Glenn Bane.

It's great to see a new venue for quality original speculative fiction emerge. Buzzy Multimedia had been in in the s-f promotions and podcast business for a while, and it's great they decided to enter the literary side of the racket.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

"Encounter in Camelot"

The ezine 4 Star Stories run by David and Mary Gray is ready to start its second year, with the first issue slated to go live this weekend or thereabouts. I had a story in each quarterly issue last year, and I am going to have a story in this upcoming issue, a wacky little fantasy called "Encounter in Camelot". I will note when it is available.

It will be the first of seven stories of mine that are already slated to be published this year.

The word from Ireland

Got a story back from Albedo One in Ireland. They held onto it for a long time, which suggested they were giving it a serious look, and they did. "I quite like the piece and it was a near miss for us."

What's helpful is that they send back some comments, which will help with revisions. I don't mind when I get a rejection - even it they took a few months - when they offer some feedback. What's useless is when somebody holds onto a story for as year and half before reading it, then sends a form rejection.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Onward to AggieCon

I will spend some time at AggieCon 43 in College Station this weekend. Because of my work schedule, I will only be there about 24 hours; I have to work a half day Saturday. I will then drive to College Station. I have a panel Saturday night at 7 p.m., and then another Sunday at 11 a.m.

The convention is being held at the Hilton Hotel and Conference Center; the student center, which has been rebuilt, is still not open.

I was a guest at AggieCon in 2006 and 2007, then dropped off their radar a few years. I've been invited the past two or three years, but couldn't attend because of its proximity on the calendar to ConDFW.

Here are my panels:

Changing Texas - Changing our beloved state into a shiny new world. Katy Stauber, Lou Antonelli, and James Knowles. Saturday at 7 p.m.

Getting Your big ideas on paper - How to start from the beginning. Your great ideas becoming a story. Katy Stauber, Lou Antonelli, and Martha Wells. Sunday at 11 a.m.

It's been five years since I was last in College Station, so I think I will enjoy it.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Buzzy Mag ready to roll out

Got word today that Buzzy Mag's premiere issue is slated for March 26. It will include my short story "The Centurion and the Rainman". I sent them a bio and my mug shot for publication.

If you are not familiar with the project, here's a little background from when they made the original announcement a year ago:


"Buzzy Multimedia, a longtime publisher of science-fiction/fantasy audio books and specialty t-shirts, announced a year ago it is expanding into print fiction publishing on the Internet with the new Buzzy Mag.

"Buzzy Mag will debut science fiction and fantasy short stories, between eight thousand and ten thousand words, from both new and established authors. The magazine will also feature interviews with notable actors, writers, producers and other entertainment industry figures."


They paid me a nice pro rate, and provided a very professional edit. I can't offer anything but the highest praise for them, they're a class outfit. I hope everyone reads Buzzy Mag when it comes out.

Friday, March 16, 2012

No new words

No new writing in the past week or so; I have been recovering from a bad cold and it's been all I can do to keep up with the work at the job. The pace there has also been impacted by a combination of vacations and medical leaves.

I have been able to keep up with subbing and resubbing stories; I think I only have one or two back, with eleven still out in slush piles.

I take heart that I have an especially good list of story ideas and lot of outlines just waiting to be gestated.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Taking stock

Right now, I have 13 stories in various slushpiles; none came back this week, which I suppose is positive. I also have seven stories slated to be published later this year. Just wanted to remind myself I'm at least a good writer; nothing like interacting with writers' groups to make you feel small.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Class advertising prepared

The local community college has begun advertising my Cont. Ed class on "The Art & Practice of Speculative Fiction Writing. The director of the department sent me this copy of the poster being distributed around campus.

I have to admit, I thought of the idea after reading that my opponent in the SFWA Vice-Presidential race taught classes. That reminded me that I had a course proposal that had been previously approved by the college. I called the department head up and we set the plans in motion.

I will enjoy the experience, and maybe help a few aspiring writers.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Call me "Perfesser Lou"

I'm following up on a plan I've had for some time, and I am going to try my hand at teaching. I've spoken enough times and participated in enough panels that I think I'd like to try to teach a class myself. Since I don't have the appropriate academic background to teach a for-credit class, I approached the continuing education department at the local community college. They approved my class. Here is the course description:

The Art and Craft of Writing Speculative Fiction:

Lou Antonelli - whose short fiction has been published in the U.S., England, Canada, and Australia - will share writing tips and techniques designed to help students become published authors themselves. Lou, who has two short story collections, "Fantastic Texas" and "Texas And Other Planets", is also a journalist and Editor of the Mount Pleasant Daily Tribune. In his course, the student will discover reasons to write, writing fiction versus non-fiction, how to write science fiction, fantasy, and other genres, and how to "peddle the final product." Don't miss out on this exciting opportunity to learn the Art and Practice of Writing Speculative Fiction! Thursday evenings from 6:00-8:00 p.m. beginning April 12. BT Building, Room 109. Tuition/Fees $75.00 Instructor: Lou Antonelli

Monday, March 05, 2012

Another story

Got word after some edits by editor Shelby Vick that my story "Accidental Witness" will be published in the pulp-homage ezine Planetary Stories in June. This is my sixth story slated to be published this year.

Planetary Stories published my story "Fermi's Fraternity" in Sept. 2007. I later included it in my collection "Texas & Other Planets".

Planetary Stories is one of those ezines done as a labor of love that helps encourage writers. I especially like that they purposefully try to emulate a "pulp" feel, and I'm happy to contribute.

Friday, March 02, 2012

Campaign Update

Last Wednesday night I made a short three-minute video by way of introduction of my campaign and posted it on the SFWA discussion board as well as as Facebook. I have not been able to post it here so far - there seems to be some technical issues. I'm still working on it.

Whatever happened to that old Sunbelt?

By LOU ANTONELLI Managing Editor It’s rained almost daily for the past four months. The ground is saturated; walking across grass is lik...