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Tag: writing

A little less conversation

A little less conversation

I’ve recently had a breakthrough of sorts regarding my novel vN. Basically, it involved the need to cut a lot of material. One thing that always bothered me about the journey my main character Amy takes is that it was a bit too long, and didn’t go enough exciting places. More importantly, the exciting places that it did (and still does) go didn’t reveal enough of the world where she and I were spending so much of our time. There…

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How we workshop fiction

How we workshop fiction

While I was in Seattle recently (scroll down for photos in the navbar to your right), my friend Jerry took me to lunch at the Wild Wheat Bakery Café & Restaurant in the south end. (I ate a delightful salmon tostada salad, then walked out with a squishably soft loaf of garlic rosemary bread and a tiny gift-sized creme brulee.) While there, Jerry’s friend Kascha asked me how my workshop works. She, like many writers, has had nasty experiences with…

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The Old–>New Contract

The Old–>New Contract

Today I had lunch at Yuzu with a friend from my Strategic Foresight & Innovation program. (I ate about half of a giant, fabulous bowl of hwaedupbap.) We were discussing our design theses. You see, in between polishing my novel and writing a study on the future of media, I’m also working on my second Master’s — a foresight report on the future of border security. (It’s part of why I joined the Border Town design studio.) My classmates are…

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If you can smell a zombie, you can be a zombie.

If you can smell a zombie, you can be a zombie.

Lan-Caihe is real, or so Will Sargent told me via Twitter, this evening while Squid and I were doing our best impersonations of Albert Finney and Peter O’Toole at a bar near my workplace. Will was, of course, referencing this story, in which a disease called Lan-Caihe (named for an eccentric Chinese deity whose sole defining characteristic seemed to be unpredictability and capriciousness) ravages the techno-factories of Shenzhen. Snip: Lan-Caihe is a degenerative brain disorder that, like Alzheimer’s, erodes the…

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When your guidelines exclude a Hugo nominee, there’s a problem.

When your guidelines exclude a Hugo nominee, there’s a problem.

These are the guidelines for Tesseracts 15, a Canadian anthology of genre fiction that is focusing on YA stories this year. I was really excited about submitting to this anthology, until I read the guidelines. (They’re available as a PDF on the website linked above.) Snip: If yours doesn’t fit, please don’t submit it. Whatever other definitions of a story suited to a 13 and older reader you may encounter or hold, the only ones that matter to this anthology…

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New story: "Zombies, Condoms, and Shenzhen: The Surprising Link Between the Undead and the Unborn"

New story: "Zombies, Condoms, and Shenzhen: The Surprising Link Between the Undead and the Unborn"

One of the reasons I haven’t blogged very much recently is that I’ve been so damn busy. I went away for a while to a lake up north, where I worked on the story in this subject heading as well as a couple of others (I even did some foresighting work, if you can believe that). The good news is that all of the stories I was working on were requests from other people — this one came from Rudy…

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How I spent the Fourth of July in Canada

How I spent the Fourth of July in Canada

From Toronto Photographing tall ships, getting sunburned, and coming home for our annual re-watch of JAWS. Oh yeah, and finishing the re-writes of my novel. The latest iteration now rests comfortably in my agent’s inbox, and I would have done a celebratory dance of some sort once I clicked “send,” had it not been a quarter to five in the morning. I took a four-hour nap before we headed out to look at the tall ships, I’m exhausted, and my…

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Getting it right

Getting it right

From Food I’ve been on break from school for a while. I wish I could say that I did something truly amazing with my time, but I mostly focused on watching Twin Peaks, doing yoga, and finally figuring out how to make brown rice properly on a stovetop. There are a lot of ways to do this, but I seem to finally have discovered the method that works for me. The secret is washing the rice. Over and over. Three…

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"What do you want?" "Information!"

"What do you want?" "Information!"

Charles Tan was kind enough to interview me about The Shine Anthology, and you can read it here. Snip: CT: What made you decide to write science fiction? MA: A lot of things. I was raised in a science fiction household. My dad had this copy of “To Sail Beyond the Sunset” under the bed, the one with Maureen doing her Birth of Venus thing on the cover. We also had the Dune and Foundation novels around, and we watched…

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Decisions

Decisions

In case anyone’s curious, I’ve gotten feedback on my manuscript from both my agent and (most of) my workshop. I’m still waiting on a couple of opinions which really matter to me, and for this reason I’ve been reticent to attempt any re-writing. I’m waiting until all the science is in, to use a climate-denier phrase. That said, I’m slowly growing more excited about the process. Everyone has a slightly different take on the book, but the good news is…

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