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A public conversation about our worlds.

  • Monday: Morgan J. Locke
  • Tuesday: Madeleine E. Robins
  • Wednesday: Maureen F. McHugh
  • Thursday: Bradley Denton
  • Friday: Steven Gould
  • Saturday: Caroline Spector
  • Sunday: Rory Harper

Brain Activity



A Hundred Years Hence

February 14th, 2010 by Steven Gould

I’ve heard that SFWA Grandmaster James Gunn will give a keynote speech for the Cushing Library’s Exhibit above. I wish I could be there. After all, for the last 35 years I’ve witnessed some of that “SF & Fantasy” at TAMU. I remember the first time I ever met Jim Gunn–he came down for something and Dr. Kroiter brought him to the SF as Literature class to talk to us. I hadn’t read much of his work at that time but I was a big fan of the TV series The Immortal.

Since then I’ve learned usual lesson. The source material is almost always better.

Brad Denton was a graduate student under him, writing some of his early short fiction in the program. Read his post about meeting Dr. Gunn back in college, “First Contact with a Grand Master.”

Posted in Fantasy, Pop. Culture, Science Fiction, Steve, Writing | 1 Comment »

Let’s Agree to Disagree

January 6th, 2010 by Steven Gould

Scott Edelman, over on Twitter, pointed out this amazingly awful attack on the great writers of science fiction by David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service.  It’s not quite James Bond, Her Majesty’s Secret Service, but it does have a ring to it.

Anyway, his post, titled Beware of Science Fiction, uses Carl Sagan, Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, Sir Arthur C. Clarke, Kurt Vonnegut, and Gene Roddenberry, as examples of agnostic or atheistic proponents.  His descriptions are factual, using quotes from the writers in question.  After reading every one of the quotes, my reaction is “Right on!” but he seems to see them as, uh, damning.

He finishes with:

Science fiction is intimately associated with Darwinian evolution. Sagan and Asimov, for example, were prominent evolutionary scientists. Sci-fi arose in the late 19th and early 20th century as a product of an evolutionary worldview that denies the Almighty Creator. In fact, evolution IS the pre-eminent science fiction. Beware!

So, I’m guessing that evidence based science is just right out of the picture, for him.

I laughed when I read the informational paragraph at the bottom of the website which includes:

OUR GOAL IN THIS PARTICULAR ASPECT OF OUR MINISTRY IS NOT DEVOTIONAL BUT IS TO PROVIDE INFORMATION TO ASSIST PREACHERS IN THE PROTECTION OF THE CHURCHES IN THIS APOSTATE HOUR.

In conclusion, I’m making a unilateral deal with him.  He shouldn’t read ANY Science Fiction and I’ll promise never to read his web site again.

(also posted at Steve’s blog, An Unconvincing Narrative)

Posted in Daily Life, Religion, Science Fiction | 8 Comments »

Iron Chef Pear or What I Did On My Birthday

February 8th, 2009 by Steven Gould

I’m in Chattanooga, Tennessee (the ‘nooga as us hep kids call it) at a combination writer’s retreat and birthday celebration (not mine, but our host’s, Mary Robinette Kowal.) It just so happens that her BD is one day (and fourteen years) after mine.

I was supposed to be the offeeeeeecial photgrapher for the following event but one of the Team Mary’s sous chefs came down sick and I was roped in.

Nobody really lost, especially all of us who got to eat it.

Posted in Fantasy, Food, Horror, Science Fiction, Writing | 5 Comments »

Many Bothans died to bring us this information…

November 14th, 2008 by Steven Gould

…but more stuffies died to make this!

If these stuffies can come together to make a greater whole, then we Americans–nay, we humans planet wide!–should be able to as well.

(The dismembering and sewing together thing–it will hurt at first.)

(Art by Noble Girl.)

Posted in Labor Relations, Noble Girl, Politics, Pop. Culture, Science Fiction, Steve | 6 Comments »

Robots Attack!

October 31st, 2008 by Steven Gould

Via SmofBabe.

Posted in Politics, Robots, Science Fiction, Steve | Comments Off

Reimagined Book Titles

October 21st, 2008 by Steven Gould

Click the pic for more over at Mighty God King.

Now, really guys, what could you do with my books? I’d love to see my first book, Hates Air Travel or my second book, Teens Get Gold (and Laid).

Posted in Fantasy, Fun, Pop. Culture, Science Fiction, Steve | 5 Comments »

Fun With (Electoral) Math; or, How Omaha Can Save the World

September 25th, 2008 by Bradley Denton

College Dean

Several different “Interactive Electoral Maps” for the 2008 Smackdown are available online . . . but my favorite is at http://projects.washingtonpost.com/2008/pick-your-president/.  This one allows you to screw with the Electoral College in all sorts of ways, much as you probably did with your Actual College.

The best thing about this map, to me, is that it includes options for splitting up the Electoral Votes of Maine and Nebraska.  You see, unlike every other state in the Union, Maine and Nebraska do not have a winner-take-all policy regarding their Electoral Votes for President.  Instead, they use the “Congressional District Method,” in which the popular-vote winner of each Congressional District is awarded one Electoral Vote (just as each district has one Congressperson), and the state’s overall popular-vote winner is awarded the remaining two Electoral Votes (just as each state has two Senators).

So far, in actual practice, this has never resulted in a split Electoral Vote for either Maine or Nebraska.  But I want to believe that 2008 could be different, particularly in Nebraska.  For one thing, Nebraska’s 1st Congressional District is home to the University of Nebraska, where support for Senator Obama is reported to be strong . . . and the 2nd District is basically the city of Omaha, which (among other blue-leaning factors) is the home of billionaire, philanthropist, and Obama-supporter Warren Buffett.  (You can forget about the 3rd District, though.  They’re red ’til they’re dead.)

I’ve had a lot of fun playing Electoral God with the map as a whole, making swing-states like Ohio and Pennsylvania swing first one way and then the other.  But somehow I can never manage to convince myself, even for a make-believe moment, that Florida will ever wind up in the blue column.  (Comedienne Sarah Silverman thinks there’s a way it could happen, however.)

My favorite tweak of the map — and note that “favorite” doesn’t mean that I think it’s either likely or desirable, but wackily possible – gives WA, OR, CA, WI, MI, IL, IN, OH, PA, NY, VT, ME, RI, CT, DE, MD, NJ, HI,  and DC to Senator Obama.  Everything else goes to Senator McCain.

This results in a 269 to 269 tie, which throws the election into the U.S. House of Representatives.

Unless . . .

You click that tiny little box that represents Nebraska’s 2nd District, turning it blue.

And then, with its one Electoral Vote, OMAHA SAVES THE WORLD!!!

Well, I mean, jeez.

SOMEbody has to.

Posted in Brad, Dammit!, Disaster Relief, Fantasy, Fun, Health and Safety, Horror, Politics, Science Fiction | 3 Comments »

Davy and Millie Story up at Tor.Com

August 26th, 2008 by Steven Gould

 

Tor.Com has just published my post-Reflex Millie and Davy story, “Shade” with this incredible Eric Fortune illustration.

Besides being able to read the story at the site, various DRM-free download formats are available:  PDF, Mobi-Pocket, HTML, and Sony, as well as an MP3 of me reading it.

Thanks, Tor!

Posted in Art, Fiction, JumperMovie, mp3, Publishing, Science Fiction, Steve, Writing | 9 Comments »

The book, the dream, and the trees

August 14th, 2008 by Morgan J. Locke

So, I finished* the revisions to the book last night**, and then I went to sleep. In my dream I had planted trees in my front yard–one or two saplings. I was trying to make sure they got enough water and was very worried about whether they would survive. It was all also very muddy and messy. (This may have something to do with the fact that we were having sewer problems yesterday. Ugh.)

Then I looked around and realized I had several trees in my front yard. And they were big! I had these big beautiful trees and I hadn’t known how quickly they’d grow! But then I got mad because:

  1. I hadn’t planted them the right distance apart (they were in this really haphazard configuration–some crowding each other);
  2. They STILL weren’t getting enough water; and
  3. When I looked more closely I saw they were actually weird looking and kind of ugly, because I had chopped off all these limbs from them. I remember looking at them and thinking, what the hell was I thinking??

*Sigh*

Shaddup, Subconscious, sez I. I got the damn thing finished. Are you ever satisfied?

Weird Tree. Creative Commons copyright 2.5 by RJA Digital, non-commercial share-alike.

(really cool tree picture, “Weird Tree,” by RJA Digital, published under a Creative Commons copyright 2.5 – non-commercial use only, share-alike.)

___________

*FINALLY

**Thank God!

Posted in Dreams, Feral Sapiens, Fiction, Morgan, Science Fiction, Writing | 15 Comments »

Dr. Horrible is Almost Here

July 13th, 2008 by Rory Harper

:

Everybody already knows about this, but just in case you’ve managed to forget, Joss Whedon’s latest project lifts off in two days.

I’ve been waiting for months for this.

Please help us to overload and crash his servers on Tuesday.

Click the pic for a preview and more info.

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Posted in Art, Fun, Geniuses, Rory, Science Fiction | 8 Comments »

The Return of LAUGHIN’ BOY

July 8th, 2008 by Bradley Denton

Laughin' Boy - Wheatland Press - Darin Bradley cover

As I return to Eat Our Brains after an absence of a few weeks, I’m also announcing the return of my novel LAUGHIN’ BOY as a trade paperback.  It’s available for preorder from Wheatland Press right this minute.  The stunning cover art is by Darin Bradley.

LAUGHIN’ BOY was originally published as a limited-edition hardcover by Subterranean Press in 2005.  It was a gorgeous book, and it sold out . . . but its cover price and small print run meant that a lot of potential readers didn’t see it.  So I’m beyond delighted that Wheatland Press is now publishing this less-expensive but equally beautiful edition.

**********************************************************

“[Laughin' Boy] is one of the funniest novels of the past decade.”

                                  — John Clute in SciFi Weekly (SciFi.com)

Posted in Brad, Fiction, Horror, Publishing, Science Fiction, Writing | 11 Comments »

Tintin, Mr. Spielberg. Mr. Spielberg–Tintin.

May 16th, 2008 by Steven Gould

Now, I was born long after the first Tintin comic was published. In fact, I believe my parents weren’t born yet (though they were about to be.) But Tintin was indomitable and I read his adventures in college, blessed with roommates who collected the English editions.

Read More »

Posted in Comics, Fantasy, Fiction, Movies, Science Fiction, Steve | 12 Comments »

I Think Brad Has the Same Harp Rack

May 14th, 2008 by Steven Gould

Seen at BoingBoing.

Posted in Brad, Movies, Music, Science Fiction, Steve | 7 Comments »

Struggling With Short Fiction

May 9th, 2008 by Steven Gould

So, the last piece of published short fiction I had out was the short story, “The Session” in Terri Windling’s anthology, The Armless Maiden and Other Tales for Childhood’s Survivors back in 1995. This doesn’t count a piece Rory and I co-wrote back in the early 90′s but which appeared in Revolution SF back in 2005. I’ve been (slowly) writing novels instead.

I had a short fiction career at one point (if one can call a career something that amounted to a)nothing even close to a living wage and b) averaging less than one published story a year.) It wasn’t totally unremarkable. I made it onto the final Hugo Ballot twice and the final Nebula Ballot once. I was (at least in my own mind) a hot young turk. All of my sales were to markets considered “professional” by SFWA. I got the odd fan letter. And I got to meet a lot of cool writers and editors.

But now I’m back at it again and I’m having a rough time. I’m not completely hopeless, I think. I sold a story to the new Tor website which helped my self-esteem a bit. But now I’m working on my latest novel and I’m writing it in chunks that I hope to market as short fiction.

And this is a tricky proposition.

Here is the start of one such tale:

Read More »

Posted in Science Fiction, Writing | 3 Comments »

Unca Scott Makes A Movie!

May 7th, 2008 by Rory Harper

Scott McCullar was the rhythm guitarist, frequent lead singer, and often song-writer for the late, somewhat- lamented Los Blues Guys. His song ‘The Element of Fire‘, based on the classic Martha Wells novel of the same name, is one of my favorites, though ‘Elvis is Alive‘ was always a huge crowd pleaser.

After tiring of the madness, the groupies, and the endless, hazy parties of the rock ‘n roll lifestyle, he became a librarian in Houston. But the spotlight called to him, as it does to us all. Here’s his new movie:

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Posted in Daily Life, Geniuses, Music, reading, Rory, Science Fiction | Comments Off

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