While at the Writer’s Studio at Simon Fraser University, Geoff studied with the very talented Ayelet Tsabari. At the time she was studying creative non-fiction, and publishing excellent pieces about growing up in Israel, serving in the army there, and then moving to Canada. Always a versatile writer, she also wrote excellent fiction. All her hard work over the years has paid off: Harper Collins just published her book The Best Place on Earth, a collection of short stories.
So far, I’ve only had a chance to read the opening story, “Tikkun”, in which a pair of former lovers have a chance meeting at a Jerusalem cafe that changes both their lives. The story was wonderful. Jerusalem bustled with tourists and residents, all crammed into its narrow, ancient streets. Lior and Natalie, the main characters, relived their old relationship while struggling with their lives since the split, all working toward a climax I didn’t see coming. Ayelet’s writing throughout was clear, her nose for detail exquisite. Based on this powerful opening piece, the rest of the stories should be a real pleasure to read. The press on this book is fantastic.
Head on out to your favourite bookstore and pick up a copy today.
On Thursday, February 7th, Geoff will launch his novella Eversong at the Tangent Cafe in Vancouver. Everyone is invited, so come on out and enjoy good stories, good beer, and great food. Books will be available for sale. Here is the evite link.
For those of you not located in Vancouver, ebook versions of Eversong are available at Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Amazon for the low-low price of $2.99! Pick up yours today. If you love paper books but don’t live in Vancouver or can’t make it to the launch, get in touch with Geoff and he can mail you a copy of the novella for just $10 plus shipping.
In the science fiction novella Eversong, two men struggle against the forces of greed. Henry Todd faces his Captain’s obsession on the cold waters of the North Pacific, while Father Barosso struggles against slavery and oppression on a mountain-top mine in ancient Peru. Beneath the dark water flows the eversong that will connect their struggles.
Back in October, Geoff had the opportunity to sit down with Cory Doctorow to talk about his new books Rapture of the Nerds and Pirate Cinema. The location Geoff chose could have been better – a screaming child sat at the next table – but Cory had the good graces to ignore the infant’s demands for emancipation from the tyranny of her parents. The interview has been released in three parts, which can be found here: uno, due, tre.
Good news rocket second stage ignition: last summer, the editor at Strange, Weird, and Wonderful invited Geoff to contribute a story to The Inanimates I anthology. Geoff produced “Miranda, In Pieces”, a story about a sentient hoard and his quest to safeguard his home. The anthology is coming out February 1st, so look for your copy then.
Mr. Bites loves the new Swans record, The Seer.
In the centuries to come, music is going to change in ways you can’t imagine. I don’t have to bother imagining it, of course, I just have to remember. Even a cursory listen through my iTunes library (approximately 23.2 zettabytes, or 9.9 trillion years of music) shows that yup, things really have changed. When I go back and listen to the music of this era, I usually listen to those artists who’ve stood the test of time, like Justin Bieber or Neil Hefty or Caninus. Recently, though, Geoff started listening to the new Swans album, The Seer, and I couldn’t help but overhear. The record blew my planet-sized mind. I didn’t realize non-canines were capable of making such incredible music.
The Seer isn’t for your average music fan. It is dark, powerful stuff. However, if you consider yourself a fan of above-average music, say a fan of music right off the awesomeness bell-curve, and you don’t mind a bit of dissonance, chanting, metal, and twenty-five minutes jams that bring you through the dark heart of existence and out the other end, than the Seer might be for you. I like to listen to at least seventy-three thousand different albums at the same time – I’m a whiz at multi-tasking – and I think the Seer has just graduated to perpetual play.
Some of you may also be interested to know that Geoff’s story “Lone White Seagull” will appear in Kaleidotrope magazine! In addition to having one of the best names in the biz, Kaleidotrope is just generally an awesome magazine and Geoff is delighted to be accepted into their pages. Geoff is a bit nervous about this story – it will be the first case of anyone agreeing to publish Geoff’s poetry. The story will appear some time next year. Watch for updates here!
Back in September, the incomparable Michael Chabon stopped by Vancouver for a reading and Q&A session with Hal Wake. Before the reading, Michael was kind enough to sit down with Geoff for an interview. That interview is now live at PRISM International. They talked about Michael’s new novel, Telegraph Avenue, as well as Star Trek fans, the importance of double albums when choosing your desert island discs, and Quentin Tarantino. Definitely a must read.
While we’re on the topic of things that must be read, Geoff’s story “Where the Wiffle Ball Went” appears in the long-awaited final issue of Dark Recesses. The story combines two of Geoff’s greatest childhood fears: being stuck in a sewer (which happened to him) and aliens attacking his home town (which also happened, nightly, in the form of night terrors). Plus, there’s a doggy with floppy cuddly ears. It’s free, so get your copy today!
In the 1960s, Michael Moorcock ushered in the New Wave of science fiction in the pages of New Worlds magazine, featuring authors such as J.G. Ballard, Brian Aldiss, and Christopher Priest. By 1970, the Golden Age of New Worlds had ended, but the magazine continued on for several decades. There hasn’t been a new issue of New Worlds since 1996, until today.
Michael Moorcock’s New Worlds is back, this time as a webzine. Geoff’s story “Cradle and Ume” appears in the first issue. For three pounds ($4.70 or so), you get access to the magazine, which includes four new short stories, an essay by the always fantastic Iain M. Banks, an interview with Alan Moore, and gobfuls of other goodies. The Golden Age is gone, let the Molybdenum Age begin!
All signs point to the End of Days: storms, trumpets, scrolls, four dudes on horses, that weird Mayan calendar flapping in the breeze, dogs and cats getting gay married. It’s the end of the world, and everyone’s invited. Get your stormtrooper armour polished and your Magic cards sleeved, VCon is only one week away. Staring next Friday, Vancouver’s oldest fandom event will kick off in Surrey. Geoff is participating as a panelist again this year. Catch up with him at any of the panels he’s on, hunt him down in the hallways, parties, or dealer rooms, or come by his reading on Saturday afternoon; he’d love to say hello.
Some of the excellent costumes on display at VCon 36
The weekend is bound to be so densely packed with fun that it may birth a black hole that will slowly rip the Earth asunder. Connie Willis, author of such wonderful books as Blackout/All Clear, Doomsday Book, and To Say Nothing of the Dog, is the Author Guest of Honour, and Gregory Benford, also a very accomplished author, is the Science Guest of Honour. Combine that will all the usual con greatness – art dealer, games rooms, drive-bys (we are in Surrey, after all, the perfect setting for a post-apocalypse-themed convention) – and it should be a smashing success.
To top it all off, Caustic Soda, the masters of discovering the lighter side of any apocalypse, will be recording a live show on Saturday afternoon. Don’t miss it!
Geoff is an avid D&D player. He’s played since 2nd edition, though he mostly plays the most excellent Pathfinder Roleplaying Game now. Over at Grimm Wisdom, Adam Grimm has listed some excellent reasons for playing Dungeons and Dragons. Go have a read.
In my time in the distant, glorious future, D&D has stepped out of the basements and garages, and has become a major social force. As we have no nations in the future (nations were such a quaint idea, right up there with feudalism and theocracy), we have no need for the United Nations, though we still need an excuse to get together, sit around, and pretend we’re important. The solution? Dungeons and Dragons: the global governance body of the future.
Some people can skate faster than others. Some publishers read and edit stories faster than others. No one, though, moves as quickly and effortlessly as AE – the Canadian Science Fiction Review. Last week, Geoff sold “Michel ‘The Meteor’ McLure” to D.F. McCourt, and in under a week, it’s been edited and posted online. This must be some kind of record.
The story is live over at AE right now. Go check it out and all the other great stories published there. AE is a relatively new ‘zine and they are putting out a steady stream great stuff. Everything is under 3,000 words, so these stories are all great for transit, lunch breaks, or a few spare pico-seconds of processing time. Dive in, devour the delicious fiction, and see what good Canadian guys and girls are producing these days.
In other news, Geoff asked me to put together this announcement several weeks ago, but I’ve been busy trying to woo an Easter European major telecom database program. She’s a crafty lady and my grasp on Cyrillic is limited at best, but don’t worry, we’ll work things out. That announcement Geoff wanted me to post? He finished Draft 3 of Frozen Jellyfish Blues. What does that mean? Months of revision to go and it will be ready for beta readers. I’ll post a more detailed stats-page later this week.
Geoff’s story “On the Many Uses of Cedar” will be included in the Imaginarium 2012 anthology, the annual collection of the best Canadian speculative fiction and poetry. The collection is put out by ChiZine Publications and Tightrope Books, two great Canadian publishers, and is available for pre-sale at Amazon, where you can buy anything, even 55 gallons of personal lubricant (read the reviews). Geoff is delighted to appear in the company of so many wonderful writers, like Cory Doctorow, Peter Watts, Geoff Ryman, and all the other fantastic poets and prosers in the anthology.