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Jul 28, 2015
And the anthology is coming out this fall
A funny thing happened in 2015. James Bond came out of copyright... in Canada. Everywhere else in the world, as far as I know, you still have to deal with the estate of Ian Fleming to clear any new Bond books or movies--but not here. So, in an incredibly gutsy move, writers Madeline Ashby and David Nickle decided to edit together and publish an anthology of brand new James Bond stories... which they have done. The anthology is coming from the ballsiest publisher on the planet, Chizine Publications, and is called License Expired: The Unauthorized James Bond. You'll be able to buy and read it in November... if you're in Canada.
This is going to be one of the most talked about anthologies of the year. --Not because it's about Bond, but because the stories are good. Great, some of them. I have one, "Mosaic," and I'll make no claims for its quality, but with authors like Charles Stross contributing, and completely new and daring takes on Bond, his exploits and foibles, this is collection is huge fun. I'm proud to be a part of it.
Jul 17, 2015
I'll be at Worldcon this year. Here's how to find me.
I hope to see you in Spokane. Here's what I'll be doing:
The Changing Face of Hard Science Fiction
Thursday 16:00 - 16:45, Bays 111B (CC)
Hard science fiction has roots that at least go back to Verne, and it's been a major part of the field -- some would argue it's been the center of the field, or even the only real SF -- since at least the 1940s. But like the rest of SF, it has evolved and change. Where is it now and where is it going?
The Future of Government
Thursday 17:00 - 17:45, 300B (CC)
We like to think that US democracy is the ultimate and best form of government. But the world has seen many different forms of government over the centuries, and even today many different forms exist around the world. What will governments in the US and other countries be like in the next 10, 50, or 200 years? How will changing technologies and world conditions (e.g., climate change) affect those forms? Are there forms of government that have been proposed that have never existed in the real world, but might?
Genre and the Global Police State
Thursday 20:00 - 20:45, 300C (CC)
Thanks to the Five Eyes -- the joint intelligence sharing treaty between the USA, UK, Australia, and others -- and the total penetration of the internet by NSA/GCHQ monitoring, we now live in a society that is a secret policeman's dream. Wikileaks and then Edward Snowden blew the lid off the scandalous subversion of western democracies by unaccountable secret government agencies. In past decades, SF and fantasy provided a vehicle for trenchant social and political commentary on on-going cultural changes (consider "The Forever War" as a comment on Vietnam), but where are the genre works dealing with the global police state?
and Futurism (Moderator)
Friday, August 21 2015, 1:00 pm
with Trina Marie Phillips, Matt Wallace
Friday, August 21 2015, 4:00 pm
Saturday, August 22 2015, 12:00 pm
Climate Change and Health
Sunday 11:00 - 11:45, Bays 111B (CC)
The climate is changing in ways that have big implications for the future well-being of humans. There will be direct effects (e.g., heat stress) and indirect effects (e.g., disease-carrying mosquitos moving northward). The panelists will discuss what is happening now, what we can expect in the near future, and what might occur down the road if climate change continues on its present course.
Sunday 12:00 - 12:45, Exhibit Hall B (CC)
Analog is one of the oldest, most prestigious SF magazines
I've been awarded the 2014 Analytical Laboratory award for Best Fact Article for my piece, "Lockstep: A Possible Galactic Empire," first published in May, 2014. You can read up about the awards and the full listing of recipients here.
This award might not be well known outside SF circles, but for me, it's huge. Analog is, after all, the quintessential Golden Age SF magazine, first appearing as Astounding in the 1930s. This is the magazine famously edited by John W. Campbell, who shepherded the careers of people like Isaac Asimov and another southern Manitoban SF writer from the Mennonite community, A.E. van Vogt. Many of the most prominent names in science fiction had their first publications in Analog. To be honoured with an award from this magazine fulfills one of my bucket-list dreams.
In the Best Young Adult Novel - English category
My novel Lockstep is up for an Aurora! I'm in good company, nominated alongside people like Kelley Armstrong and Charles de Lint. I've previously won the award, in particular for my novel Permanence, but that was in the Best Novel - English category. It's cool to be nominated in the YA category because I was hoping that this book would appeal to a younger audience as well as my established fans. The nomination suggests that I didn't completely fail in doing this.
The awards will be handed out on the weekend of November 20-22nd, 2015, at the SFContario 6 convention in Toronto. For more information (like, if you want to vote), see the Aurora Awards website.
A story I'm proud to see included
My short story "Jubilee" can be found in The Year's Best Science Fiction, 32nd Annual Edition, edited by Gardner Dozois. "Jubilee" is set in my Lockstep universe, but it explores the ideas of that book from the outside in. It's about a hereditary caste of couriers who transfer letters between two people who live in separate locksteps. The couriers live in real-time, but the Authors, as they call them, are from locksteps that only awake at 30 and 29 year intervals, respectively. Centuries pass between jubilees--those brief times when both locksteps are awake at the same time.
Here's the thing, though: the letters are just love-letters between two teenagers from different worlds. "Jubilee" is a love story, but one that's played out over hundreds of years and mediated by people who live their entire lives in between the exchange of two letters.
This story was huge fun to write, and was originally published on Tor.com. I'm delighted to see it in print form, and especially in a place like the Year's Best.
Apr 07, 2015
Isabell Spengler, film artist from Germany, and I will be discussing time and perception at Trinity Square Video April 8, 2015. You're welcome to join us
My interests in time and in what is "really real" meet this week in an exhibit and discussion at Trinity Square Video in downtown Toronto. I'll be talking duration and solidity with German filmmaker Isabell Spengler, whose exhibition Two Days at the Falls will be showcased at the galllery. This should be a mind-bending excursion to the edges of what we know, and I'm really looking forward to it--so come join us, April 8 at 6:30 p.m. at 401 Richmond Street West, Suite 376. We're right at Spadina so the easiest access by TTC is the Spadina Streetcar; there are numerous Green-P and Blue-P parking garages in the neighbourhood as well. For more information about the event and the gallery's ambitious science-fiction oriented programme, check out the press release.