Art and updates, mainly: looks like I’m going to be back in Nantes this November for a return engagement at Utopiales, the massive French con that roots itself in Jules Verne’s home town. Caitlin and I were there back in 2010, and loved it. I am not just delighted to be going back, I am also surprised and deeply suspicious; it seems too soon for my name to have come ’round again. There’s a part of me that wonders if someone didn’t access an old guest list by mistake; or, worse, if this is some kind of cruel hoax.
We’ll find out soon enough.
Keeping with the overseas motif, here’s the cover for MAG’s new short story collection, coming out this fall. To save you the trouble of typing into Google Translate, the title comes out as An Antidote for Optimism, and — as usual — the Poles seem congenitally incapable of producing cover art that is anything short of terrific. Given my strange and unexpected long-distance romance with that country over the past few years, it seems only right that this volume should represent the most comprehensive collection of my short fiction ever assembled in any language. Including my own website. (Which I really should rectify. Really, this time. Any month now.)
Finally, tracking north across the Baltic1, the latest issue of Tähtivaeltaja gears up for Finncon with a special section focusing on Guest of Honor Aliette de Bodard (whom I look forward to meeting because I have not yet and she seems to be everywhere) and including a translation of my fan-fic story “The Things”, which made its first appearance in Clarkesworld a couple years back. This time around, “The Things” is illustrated by Olli Hihnala. I do not know whether these superb illustrations are more typical of his style than the naked dude with the rainbow-spewing bearcat-head breasts who is under attack by six-gun-wielding skeletal monkeys astride ass-blasting flying zebras that adorns his web site. I cite both as evidence that at the very least, Mr. Hihnala has range. And these pics are a great fit for the story: strongly evocative of the look of the Carpenter film, while at the same time adding a layer of visual metaphor across the literal viscera. If that makes any sense.
Anyway, I think they’re just about perfect.