You wouldn’t be hitting EoB if you didn’t appreciate smart, witty writing by smart, witty people.
That’s why, if you’ve inexplicably missed it so far, you’ll appreciate the fiction of Martha Wells. She writes with grace and concision, creating worlds unlike others you’ve read. Her characters are flashing quick, with ironic wit that will pierce your eyes. If words ever failed me, they would do so now. She’s good at what she does.
She’s generously posted on-line the entire text of her first novel:
I’d be neglecting your welfare if I didn’t mention that you can also command to be printed a paper copy of the book from Lulu. Paper is really what books are all about, us Net-heads to the contrary. And it’ll be easier for you to re-read it in a few years when all that remains is the memory of how much you enjoyed it.
The Element of Fire is justly considered a classic in the field. I will not risk over-selling it to you. You’re big, you know what turns you on. You can go to her site and try it out for free. When you’re done, then you can see about buying her other books.
You may want to consider perusing the rest of her site, as it’s packed with more chewy nuggets. She also actively maintains an open LiveJournal, and discusses the writing process in detail, as well as responding to specific questions.
I feel a need to make something pellucidly clear here. Martha is my friend, has been for several decades.
I’m not doing her a favor by mentioning her work today.
I’m doing you a favor.
As an added bonus, we have the stream of the song:
It was written by Scott McCullar, and performed by him and, on flute, an old friend named Russell, at a Los Blues Guys rehearsal in Jon-Tim and Cathy Cowden’s garage. This song has haunted me since I first heard it, and is one of my two most favorite Scott songs. The other one is ‘Elvis is Alive’, and if I can find a restorable recording of it, you’ll be hearing it soon enough.
EDIT: Urk… Unexpectedly, the EOB site won’t let me host the song here. There’s a surprising file size restriction on uploads. I’ll fix this as soon as possible and post a live link. Dammit, if I ever find Murphy, I’m gonna take a machete to him.
EDIT #2 — The stream link is now alive! My nice friend Bradley is hosting it for the good of humanity. Any feedback from people about the mastering on this thing will be appreciated, especially as I have some high-tech monitors that I mix on, and haven’t had time to check on how the mix might translate to other rigs.