leahbobet: (gardening)
So: stuff afoot! Here's some!

1) You may or may not be aware of [livejournal.com profile] magick4terri, an LJ-based fundraiser to help writer, artist and editor Terri Windling through a serious financial crisis. I've never met Terri, but her work in establishing urban fantasy, in creating a distinct aesthetic, in creating a space for certain kinds of art and fostering it at Endicott Studios has been a huge influence on what I do, and how, and has been crucial to tons of friends and our community.

So. I've posted an auction item here -- a signed, personalized first edition of Above to be delivered the second I get hands on one, as well as any bookmarks or swag that accumulates -- and if you're interested in bidding, go to. There's also some fantastic, droolworthy stuff being offered, so taking the time to browse it is, well, time well spent.

2) The YA Scavenger Hunt, organized by author Colleen Houck, is on from December 1 to 4th! She's corralled a whole bunch of YA authors into creating a scavenger hunt for your delectation, featuring not only a bucket of extra and secret material for a whole lot of awesome upcoming releases, but there are also fabulous prizes. Every author has a piece of secret content and a link to the next person on the hunt, and if you collect all the words marked in red and enter the contest before December 4th, you could win those fabulous prizes we mentioned up there.



My featured content is for author Lisa Nowak, and everything's at the website. The secret content for Above is...out there in the internets. Being secretive. Waiting to be caught.

3) The December Ideomancer has hit the wider Internets!

Our final issue for 2011 speaks on a winter topic: connection, and isolation, for the months when we here at Ideomancer headquarters are hemmed in most by the snow and dark, and reach out most to each other for light.

Michael John Grist’s "The Orphan Queen" shows, slantwise, the terribleness of isolation and the terrible bravery it takes to conquer it; Ken Schneyer’s "Neural Net", one of our first pieces of hyperfiction in much too long, echoes through its intertwined structure the ideas of withdrawal, and love, and hiding from the world; and Erica Satifka returns to our pages with "Signs Following", a soft, edged story about faraway places and the things we will do when our ties to both friends and universe are threatened.

Poetry from Mary Turzillo, Brit Mandelo, C.G. Olsen, and David C. Kopaska-Merkel dips from relationships to houses to black holes, all places to be alone together, and as always, the usual book reviews.

We’d also like to note another staff departure: Marsha Sisolak has been a part of Ideomancer since 2002, as a junior editor, then publisher, and then the aesthetic eye behind the art that goes up with every story and poem we publish, and after almost a decade in the small press coal mines, she’s moving on to focus more on her own (excellent!) writing. Thank you, Marsha – you’ll be missed!

As usual, we hope you enjoy this quarter’s issue, and if so, please consider dropping something into our tip jar. Ideomancer relies on reader donations to pay its contributors for their excellent fiction and poetry, and even five dollars makes a big difference.


So, consider yourselves all announced. Me, I'm going to get some lunch. Happy internetting!
Above seems to be available for preorder on Amazon.

I have to get back to stuff, but.

Squee!
After eight years, I decided maybe it wasn't the best idea anymore to have my professional journal named after the elf from that MUD I was playing when I was fourteen.*

Which is to say that this LJ has been renamed to better reflect my more boring, bespectacled, round-ears self. I do this with a bit of sadness**, since I still remember when [livejournal.com profile] merriehaskell was fairmer and [livejournal.com profile] cmpriest was wicked_wish. But it was kinda time.

The $15 I just paid LJ for the privilege should ensure that there's an automatic forward on links, but y'know. Adjust links accordingly etc. etc.


And in other news, I know I owe you guys a couple Iron Chef Farmshare posts, and will be doing that tonight or tomorrow morning. Honest.


*True fact, that. Also, if anyone's looking for me under that name by now, they've been trying for a really long time and probably won't be by.

**Prufrockian sadness, even!
You may know that for the past four years, I've been the Support Staffer at the Online Writing Workshop for Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror, as was my father [livejournal.com profile] ccfinlay before me.

That is, unfortunately, coming to an end. I'm getting busier and busier, and there is no real end in sight, and something had to give, and it was this. So I've given in my resignation to the workshop.

What does that mean for you, though? It means they're hiring.


Our current OWW support go-to person and mailing list moderator, Leah Bobet, is moving on from OWW (darn, everyone we hire goes and sells their novels!). So the Online Writing Workshop for SF, Fantasy, and Horror is seeking a new point person. This is a paid position that varies from 5-10 hours per month, with occasional special projects possible in addition. Qualities we require:

--friendly, supportive, helpful attitude
--clear & polite e-mail style, since most interaction is by e-mail (also see above)
--ability to direct and support beginning members & reviewers using OWW site tools
--mature and careful mailing-list moderation
--ability to follow the OWW discussion lists and provide enrichment and encouragement to ongoing discussions
--recognizing when an issue needs to come to the attention of OWW HQ for further action or action approval
--minimum of one year's experience as an active OWW member contributing both submissions and reviews

Skills & competencies we would also like to see:

--Familiarity with Yahoo! Groups and its moderation tools
--Basic HTML
--Some experience with promotional writing, advertising, SF/F promotion

Dream-on wish list:

--Ability to program in Rails
--Goes to lots of SF/F conventions
--Familiar with many of the workshop members already
--Enjoys making spreadsheets to figure things out

Access/time requirements: daily monitoring of OWW discussion mailing lists; checking and replying to OWW support e-mail address at least 4x/week; monitoring workshop reviews and associated followup at least 1x/week.

Start date: immediately upon hiring

Paid training period: 3 weeks working under tutelage of Leah Bobet

Pay rate: $20 US per hour to start, $25 US per hour after 6-month trial period

If interested, submit resume and letter of application to ekh (AT) onlinewritingworkshop (DOT) com by May 15.


Spread the word, yo.
I should probably tell you all that I will be at the World Fantasy Convention this coming weekend (read: from Thursday evening sometime or other to Sunday morning. I could only get so much time off work.) WFC only gives everyone one programming item each, and appears to be mine:

Friday, 10:00AM, Panel B06
The Fairy Tale as a Specific Form
(Gabe Dybing (m), Delia Sherman, Leah Bobet, James Dorr, Terri-Lynne DeFino)

Elsewise, I shall be in the bar. Or at programming items I find interesting, knitting away.
Sooooo all that revising I did all week? Tres worthwhile.

"Stay", the story about wendigoes, pomegranates, Raven, and the ethics of cold-weather communities, will appear in the inaugural volume of Chilling Tales: From the Great White North, a new annual anthology series of Canadian horror edited by Michael Kelly and published by Edge.

What with all the working on long-form stuff lately it's been a while since I got to report one of these, and I will unabashedly say that selling stuff feels nice.

The book should be out in March 2011, premiering at the World Horror Convention in Austin. Considering I know some of the other names on the TOC so far (*cough*Claude*cough*[livejournal.com profile] jsridler), I commend the book in general to your attention.
So today I made it home at 7pm to find out that Mary Sue the Desktop Computer is now a hurt/comfort computer, and wants me to prove my love for her by petting her tenderly, being worried that she has nearly! died! of a rare! tropical! disease!, and throwing money at a computer repair gent to replace either the power supply or motherboard tomorrow after work. My draft of "Stay" is stuck on the desktop too, so I'm a tad miffed. But only a tad. It's not the hard drive, after all, and all will likely be well and all manner of things be well tomorrow night so long as it's the power supply. If it's the motherboard, things take longer. Then I may be more miffed.

If you're waiting for e-mail from me on something and it wasn't sent today, it'll be another day at least. It's sitting on the hurt/comforputer. Sorry.


In other news, I got to send a legitimate work e-mail in the voice of Dr. Doom this afternoon, so it really isn't all bad. *g*
Now that we're mostly all in the land of the living here (sorry, Australians), it's time for for the reviews and Cool Announcement. Yes, more reviews. I've got to put them somewhere or they clog up the vents.

First off, Blog of the Fallen says some very nice things about Clockwork Phoenix 2, calling it the best original genre anthology they read this year. Which is nifty.

Moving into the main course, Hannah Strom-Martin, in the Strange Horizons 2009 in Review article, gives a shoutout to Realms of Fantasy and "Mister Oak":

In the last issue Harlan Ellison’s effortlessly brilliant "How Interesting: A Tiny Man" and Leah Bobet’s touching "Mister Oak" reminded me of the fabulous literary lights we possess. May they continue to burn into 2010 and beyond.

This is especially nice because I opened it up and ironically did a little search on my name, so I could find nothing and get on with my life. And then I found something. And felt bad for being such a terrible cynic like I am, but was crazy flattered that it turned out this way.

Next rock! The Twitter saying something nice about "Mister Oak" the other day has been located, mostly because he expanded it into a blog post: Pete Tzinski says some further nice things about that story, and likes the stats page as well. Which I need to do a little redesign on to handle those freaking tables. They are ugly.

There. That's reviews.


The Fun Cool Announcement of Import is that I, along with a bunch of the other Shadow Unit authors, will be appearing at the Tucson Festival of Books in Tucson, AZ on March 13 and 14. We'll be doing a panel and signing, and otherwise just roaming the festival in a pack formation, being festive.

There are a lot of authors already signed up for this thing -- I'm sort of personally boggled at the hugeness when I'm not doing little fangirl dances about various attendees -- so I'm really looking forward to this trip. If you're in the area, hope to see you there!
We at the Casa are pleased to inform that "Three Days and Nights in Lord Darkdrake's Hall", which originally appeared in Strange Horizons, will be reprinted in audio at Podcastle sometime in the near future.

This has been your announcement, and now I must make some tea.
[livejournal.com profile] time_shark informs that both Amazon and Barnes and Noble have Clockwork Phoenix 2 in stock, even though the official release date is July 1. This shiny book includes fiction from Claude Lalumiere, [livejournal.com profile] swan_tower, Ian McHugh, [livejournal.com profile] ann_leckie, [livejournal.com profile] maryrobinette, Saladin Ahmed, Tanith Lee, Joanna Galbraith, [livejournal.com profile] yuki_onna, [livejournal.com profile] experimeditor, [livejournal.com profile] handful_ofdust and Stephen J. Barringer, Kelly Barnhill, Barbara Krasnoff, and Steve Rasnic Tem, as well as my "Six", which you all may know as the story about gardening, roof-sheep, and the apocalypse.

It got a really shiny review from Publishers Weekly. I think you should read it.

That is all.
Above is a good child, and a dutiful. It calls me on my birthday, wears a jacket when it goes outside, and on its last trip home, it brought a nice literary agent with it.

That is to say, I am pleased dorking out self-satisfied like a cat excited to say that I've accepted an offer of representation from Caitlin Blasdell at Liza Dawson Associates. I am so looking forward to this.

My agent, I show you her!
First Sunday of the month, and that means new Shadow Unit! This month is "Getaway", by [livejournal.com profile] coffeeem, and I assure you it is fabulous.

As before, Shadow Unit is an interactive online hyperfiction environment, of sorts. Or, more clearly, it's fanfiction for a TV show that doesn't exist, currently written by a cast of award-nominated-and-winning SFF authors including [livejournal.com profile] coffeeem, [livejournal.com profile] matociquala, [livejournal.com profile] truepenny, [livejournal.com profile] stillsostrange, and [livejournal.com profile] blackholly, licensed under creative commons, with an active fan community and a whole lot of fun.

Uncle Sam wants you to read it.


Otherwise, I have largely nothing to report. Out most of the day -- a work date with a whole bunch of people and then ice cream in the evening -- and I am fussing enough about things that maybe don't merit that much fussing that I suspect I've had an inappropriate dose of caffeine and sugar and am being made to pay for that. The meatpuppet is ever-fickle.

I'll see how I feel about said things tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm off to treat my vengeful brain chemistry with a hot bath and a glass of wine.
We are completely pumped to announce that the June Ideomancer is live!

Our June issue is -- although we tried to dodge it -- an exploration of love and death.

Our first story this month, Ward Crockett's "It Kills Birds," looks at the double ties between love and death: when love can kill you, and when one person's dying inside can quietly kill a relationship. Jacqueline West's "The Wedding Gift" inverts that, discussing when love—rightly or wrongly—survives death, while Swapna Kishore's "Home on the Ganges" deftly discusses mourning and blame, and when it is time to let go of both.

Our poets this month are Marcie Lynn Tentchoff, Larry Hammer, and Sonya Taaffe, with their respective poems, "Grace in the Desert," "At Death's Door," and "Lamellae (Hipponion and Cambridge)", all three of which discuss the curious intersection between loving and dying.

Enjoy!
leahbobet: (bat signal)
Lone Star Stories #33 is live, a few hours ahead of schedule! It contains poetry from Sonya Taaffe, Samantha Henderson, and Jacqueline West -- two of whom will be appearing in the June Ideomancer, incidentally -- and fiction from Jo Walton and Nina Kiriki Hoffman. And me.

I feel like I keep saying I find myself on TOCs with really cool people and don't know how I got there, but they keep failing to kick me out of the cool parties somehow... 0.o

So! If you wanted to find out what that Shower Angel story I kept giggling about is all about, "Parable of the Shower" is available right behind that link.

(Deposit your tomatoes and/or panties here. Although if you do opt to throw tomatoes, I may just make them into more gazpacho.)
It pleaseth me, gentles all, to let you know that "Parable of the Shower", which some of you may remember as the shower angel story, has been accepted at Lone Star Stories. For the people who aren't those some people, suffice to say that this is probably the most high-wire stuntwriting I've ever done.

Second person, present tense, in the language of the King James Bible. No harness, and no net.

It made me snicker a lot.

I am glad it has a home. *g*
Speaking of Shadow Unit, there is more DVD extra goodness up...now.

Go forth! Fly, my pretties!
I am (still) much too tired and fried to be getting any actual work done (six hours or less of sleep a night for the last week or so. I'm not underslept enough to be hallucinating, but we're getting there), but it appears to be semi-official: I'll be returning to do two episodes for Shadow Unit's next season ETA: thereby, [livejournal.com profile] matociquala informs me, being officially on staff.

[livejournal.com profile] blackholly's doing a second tour of duty too, along with the regular writer's room: [livejournal.com profile] coffeeem, [livejournal.com profile] matociquala, [livejournal.com profile] stillsostrange and [livejournal.com profile] truepenny. Planning is happening. Much anomalousness to follow!

Long weekend to follow too, thankyouGod. Dayjob, while always gentle, considerate, and willing to surprise me with dinner by the fireplace on the bearskin rug, has been seriously hectic for the past few weeks. It's something like death by pressing, but you get donuts and chocolate while they stack the work on top of your fragile, whimpering ribcage. So four days off, all in a row, is something like a miracle to me right now. I plan to cook a bunch, hit Kensington Market if the weather holds, catch up on my sleep, write words, revise words, and slap up an actual Public Accountability list once I'm awake enough to have a brain.

Which isn't now.

Night, internets.
There are birthdays tonight.

First off, it is "Sugar"'s birthday: it goes live at Shadow Unit within the hour. I admit to nerves about this. If you're a fan, whee! Hope you enjoy! If you're hoping to get into it, the shockingly dedicated and industrious fans have put together a master chronology that tells you where to start. And if you're just interested in finding out what I was swearing about for three months or more there, well, now you can know.

For those of you who haven't yet heard about the whole Shadow Unit thing, it's an interactive online hyperfiction environment, of sorts. Or, more clearly, it's a long, collaborative, ongoing narrative, currently written by a cast of award-nominated-and-winning SFF authors including [livejournal.com profile] coffeeem, [livejournal.com profile] matociquala, [livejournal.com profile] truepenny, [livejournal.com profile] stillsostrange, and [livejournal.com profile] blackholly, licensed under creative commons, with an active fan community and a whole lot of fun. They let me play with their toys for this episode. It was nice of them.

Go read. *g*


The other birthday tonight is Above's. Yes, kids: Above is two.

I didn't bake it a cake like last year; in Book Years (like Dog Years) it is now an indolent, leeching twentysomething who's moved back into the basement and needs to go out and get a job so I can continue planning Freedom 55. But I did write it a synopsis tonight. This means two things: firstly, that the next time I get tantrumy and threaten to throw it out right! now! I might actually be able to make good on that threat. The submission package is ready. I sub this book very soon now.

Secondly, it's nice to skim through your book as you're synopsizing it and realize it's actually pretty good.

(Oh, Above. It's a good thing you're pretty, or it would have been the burlap sack and the river a long time ago. *adoring sigh*)

So, um. Happy birthday, little book? :)
(Well, it's not quite IT LIVES! yet.)

In any case, the teaser for "Sugar"/Sugar/whatever the thing is is up at the Shadow Unit site, alongside a creepy! DVD extra.

That is all.
After a lot of learning the ropes, back-and-forthing, heroic efforts on Production Editor [livejournal.com profile] tanaise's part, and serious excitement, the March issue of Ideomancer is live.

Our first issue of the year explores human--or nonhuman--connection.

Our first story this month, J.D. Brames's "Borborygmi," is a grimly hilarious portrait of disconnection in a late-night convenience store. Michaela Kahn's "Blight, Under the Microscope," explores the lines between individual and force of nature, social and personal responsibility, while Steven Mohan, Jr.'s "The Promise of Touch" shows a very different and very personal end of the world.

Our poets this month are J.C. Runolfson, Mike Allen, and Amal El-Mohtar, with their respective poems, "Lifestory," "Cosmic Secrets," and "The Night Sisters," which explore the idea of connection in archetypical, astronomical, and sometimes violent ways.


This is my first issue at the helm, so you'll understand if I have an extra helping of chuffed on my plate today. :)


This being said, we're also playing with the support model for Ideomancer: trying to see if we can take the magazine to a mixed-funding model, including donations. Reader donations have always been something we've gratefully received, if sporadically. So if you really enjoy the March issue, please consider dropping five or ten bucks our way? The magazine -- like so many other semipro markets -- is a labour of love; whatever's in our bank account goes to paying our contributing authors and poets, whom we hope to someday be able to pay better than we currently do.

Our budget needs are modest: Ideomancer runs on approximately $600 a year. So if you're inclined to throw a bit of support our way, be assured that it will count. Our donations page is located in the main sidebar, under "Donate."

Thanks very much, and we hope you enjoy the issue!

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