Russian Autumn Heart

Turns out I have fans in Russia (I was even going to meet some of them last month, but plans fell through at the last minute). Two of them— photographer Pavel Hotulevs and model Aija (last name unknown, but that’s okay because the first name is awesome just by itself) collaborated on a Starfish shoot which, in my humble estimation, really captures the atmosphere of that book. Lenie asleep on the seabed, where it’s only dark when the lights are on; Lenie eyeing the fragments of a shattered mirror as a piece of Ken Lubin stares back from the wall.

Certain details are off, of course— Clarke’s blonde in the books, and Fischer was the only rifter to unseal his hood out on the rift— but the essence is dead on. That  mannequin face, that expressionless mask laid so carefully over the hair-triggered explosives beneath— that is Lenie Clarke.

Don’t know how impressed I am by this thumbnail layout— while I usually just  stick my graphics into an html table,  today I’m trying out WordPress’s relatively-limited “gallery” function— but if you click on one three times you get to see the whole picture in all its monochromatic glory.  And as a special bonus, if you drop your eyes a line or two you can also get a load of “R.S.”s Rorschach tattoo, inked and needled by Daniel Cotte at North Star Tattoo in NYC.

(PS io9 stuck Beyond the Rift on their “Must Read” list for Autumn 2013.)

This entry was posted on Thursday, August 22nd, 2013 at 1:50 pm and is filed under ink on art, rifters. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

17 Responses to “Russian Autumn Heart”

  1. fvngvs

    Well, you certainly kept that quiet. A new short story collection, or is it simply one I’ve not yet found?

  2. Peter Watts

    Actually, it’s not out until November. I guess you’d call it a Greatest Hits collection, if it had been authored by someone who’d written greatest hits. There is, however, a fairly extensive essay I wrote at the end which basically centers around the intersection of my life with dystopia.

  3. Pavel

    Talking about Aija’s surname…. it is Dzenkowski (from the same region as Lublin, if I’m not mistaken)

  4. Alexey

    That third photo is just mesmerizing.


    Wow, she has a hundred cat photos on her Facebook page!

  5. Pavel


    well, you could expect that from a person, who works in an animal shelter 🙂

  6. Lars

    …Watts is one of those writers who gets into your brain and remains lodged there like an angry, sentient tumor…

    God, I’ll bet you’re blushing, Peter. What a compliment!

  7. Dahman

    I don’t know if anyone mentioned it already, but a video footage of a real-life rifter has been recorded undersea. They call it mermaid, not knowing better.

  8. Whoever

    Coffeetable Monster Series Book II – The Aquatic Ape. (Though probably not as sexy as vampires).

  9. Hljóðlegur


    Researcher Controls Colleague’s Motions in First Human Brain-To-Brain Interface
    Aug. 27, 2013 — University of Washington researchers have performed what they believe is the first noninvasive human-to-human brain interface, with one researcher able to send a brain signal via the Internet to control the hand motions of a fellow researcher.

    U of Washington page:

  10. Sheila

    Hljóðlegur about brain2brain,

    My first reaction was to look for their source code, but they don’t have it posted on their pilot study page.

    but they were friendly enough to reply back to me in email to let me know that they cannot provide me with their code yet, but that in general they use bci2000 for brain interface software.

    in case anyone was wondering.

  11. Whoever

    Headcheese! Headcheese! We have (pea-sized) headcheese!

  12. Sheila


    from the article,

    The “mini-brains” have survived for nearly a year, but did not grow any larger. There is no blood supply, just brain tissue, so nutrients and oxygen cannot penetrate into the middle of the brain-like structure.

    Perhaps they could collaborate with this lab. Penn Researchers Improve Living Tissues With 3D Printed Vascular Networks Made From Sugar

  13. Whoever

    Nice application of imagination and problem-solving, Sheila.

    Cannot help but see the hidden humor in here:

    “There is no blood supply, just brain tissue, so nutrients and oxygen cannot penetrate into the middle of the brain”

    Was once at an event where someone asked a former gunnery sergeant how to wear an officer’s hat properly. “Often too tight” was mentioned and whoever suggested something like that quote might explain a few things.

  14. mdogx

    Of course you have fans in Russia)

    Peter, you did not think to come to us?
    We can’t organize big event, but interested people and good atmosphere will surely be)

  15. Peter Watts

    Hey mdogx,

    Actually, I was hoping to visit Russia after FinnCon. Bulgaria too. Folks in both countries sent out feelers — even went so far as an official invite with flight dates in Bulgaria — but both fell through at the last minute.

  16. Sheila
  17. Sheila

    Hey look, another article on growing vascularized tissue in a lab.

    I only noticed it via Nature Publishing Group’s facebook feed–they pointed out that it includes a CAD file so that you can print out part of the experiment.

    Formation of microvascular networks in vitro.

    /me wanders off to print brain vasculature…