Tag: asimov’s

Misc. sales


-“Two Sisters In Exile” will be reprinted in David G. Hartwell’s Year’s Best Science Fiction, out from Tor sometime this year. Haven’t seen a TOC yet, but I know the volume contains at least “The Waves” from Ken Liu–nice company to be in :p

-Also quite pleased to announce I sold my novelette “Memorials” to Asimov’s. This one took a lot of work whipping into shape, so many thanks to Ken Liu, Bo Balder, Joe Crow, Pam Wallace–and special ones to Tricia Sullivan, Rochita Loenen-Ruiz and Benjanun Sriduangkaew for keeping up my faith in the story.


Cam finds Pham Thi Thanh Ha in her house, as she expected. By now, she doesn’t question the aunts’ knowledge or how they came by it. She does what she’s told to, an obedient daughter beholden to her elders, never raising a fuss or complaining– the shining example of filial piety extolled in the tales her girlfriend Thuy so painstakingly reconstitutes in her spare hours.

Set in the postcolonial corner of Xuya (except no mindships this time around!). With my favourite secondary characters ever, the cabal of aunts who know what is good for you (even if you don’t!).

Heart Attack of the Day


The latest issue of Locus contains Gardner Dozois’s review of “Scattered Along the River of Heaven”, which he very kindly calls the story one of the best of the year so far, and compares it to Ursula Le Guin’s “The Day Before the Revolution”. (in case you’re curious and not a Locus subscriber, Sean Wallace posted the full text of the review here)

Given that Le Guin is basically one of my heroines, who got me into feminism, and got me into SF at a time when most (hard) SF left me cold; and that “The Day Before the Revolution” is one of her stories that still stick with me, years after reading it… you’ll understand why I’m pretty much floored at that point.

(bonus links: Adam Callaway’s take on the Nebula Awards finalists, aka I’m floored again; and just for a contrast, VarietySF’s take, which basically lists “Shipbirth” at the bottom of the list as completely incomprehensible and unreadable)

Morning bleariness


The bleariness is mostly a ref. to doing Vietnamese early in the morning, which always makes me feel inadequate as a language learner (but offset by the fact that I think I’m getting somewhere with the latest short story brainstorming, yay!).

However… this is also offset by the fact that I’ve sold two short stories–one sale I think I can’t announce yet, and the other… Sheila Williams let me know she was taking “Starsong” for Asimov’s. Doing the Snoopy dance here. Many thanks to the November 2010 Villa Diodati crew for reading the first version of this (Ruth Nestvold, John Olsen, Jeff Spock, Steve Gaskell, Ben Rosenbaum, Nancy Fulda, and Christian Walker); and for my last-minute awesomely fast beta-readers (Mark Hünken, Tricia Sullivan, Chris Kastensmidt, and Kate Elliott [1]). You guys all rock.

This is the Xuya story with the Flower Wars in space (and, in a bit of an Easter egg, the origin story of the Minds, my ship-bound AIs borne in human wombs–though it will take many, many decades of work before the incident described in “Starsong” leads to the creation of Minds).

In other news, I just discovered I’m a little under halfway through the Vietnamese lesson book. I certainly don’t feel halfway proficient, but I have faith…

Back to brainstorming a story. See you guys later…

[1] The market I had in mind originally for this (and which set the punitive deadline) turned out not to be a match for the story, so I emailed it to Sheila.

In which I travel over the internet, and also for real


So… 2 days until I leave for Washington, where I shall be sharing a room with fellow nominee Amal El-Mothar (and, briefly, with Alethea Kontis). Trying not to freak out. It’s been a long, long time since I last was in the States (couldn’t believe it, but the last time I travelled over was for WOTF in 2007. I still have the slipcard from LAX in my passport to prove it). I’m really looking forward to meeting people I haven’t seen in ages, but the whole “fly over the Pond” is making me nervous in an odd way. Probably because my last US trip was such a nightmare (delayed plane, hellish changeover at Heathrow, but 2-3 hours stuck in the passport queue at LAX). Ah well. I’m sure I’ll do fine.

Not sure of how much blogging will take place while I’m there. Probably not much. In the meantime, however, you can join the Locus Short Story club: Karen Burnham is spearheading a discussion on multiply-nominated short fiction. It’s, er, a very, very short list, and not only does include “The Jaguar House, in Shadow”, the discussion also starts with the story. *speechless* So, if you feel like discussing my Mexica future, hop on over to Locus on Sunday. Other stories under discussion include fellow Codexian Eric James Stones’ “That Leviathan, Whom Thou Hast Made”.

Other places you can find me on the Internet: the awesome Alethea Kontis interviewed me for her Genre Chick feature (I swear that this has nothing to do with the room-sharing. I absolutely totally did NOT bribe her to get good interview questions *g*). While you’re at it, you can check out the rest of the lineup, which includes Leah Cypess, Rick Novy, Lon Prater, David B. Coe…

I’ll now go back to watching my phở broth happily boil…

Linky linky


“Casa Jaguarului in Umbra”, aka the Romanian version of “The Jaguar House, in Shadow”, is up at the SRSFF website. Many thanks, as always, to Cristian Tamas and to Antuza Genescu for the translation. There is a French version forthcoming in Galaxies as well.
-Both “The Jaguar House in Shadow” and “Age of Miracles, Age of Wonders” make the 2010 Tangent Online Recommended Reading list . Lots of familiar names on that list, and plenty good stories too.
-And because it’s International Women’s Day, a video with Dame Judi Dench and Daniel Craig:

(even though I’m sceptical about the efficacity of International Women’s Day, I have to say the video sums up a lot of my feelings on the subject)

The Jaguar House in Shadow nominated for a Nebula Award for Best Novelette


It’s now official: my alt-hist Aztec novelette, “The Jaguar House, in Shadow”, originally published in Asimov’s, July 2010, has been nominated for a Nebula Award.

This would be the bit where I feel faint (I’ve known for a week, but it still feels very unreal. In my book, Nebulas are pretty much a thing which happens to other people). Many many thanks to everyone who nominated it, and I guess I should start looking into the following things: a ballgown, a hotel reservation, and plane tickets for Washington…

Here’s the complete list of nominees (plenty of familiar names in there, too, how cool–special congrats to Chris Kastensmidt for making the ballot!). I’ve put together links fairly quickly; should update this when I get home and have more free time.

Short Story
‘‘Arvies’’, Adam-Troy Castro (Lightspeed Magazine 8/10)
‘‘How Interesting: A Tiny Man’’, Harlan Ellison® (Realms of Fantasy 2/10)
‘‘Ponies’’, Kij Johnson (Tor.com 1/17/10)
‘‘I’m Alive, I Love You, I’ll See You in Reno’’, Vylar Kaftan (Lightspeed Magazine 6/10)
‘‘The Green Book’’, Amal El-Mohtar (Apex Magazine 11/1/10)
‘‘Ghosts of New York’’, Jennifer Pelland (Dark Faith)
‘‘Conditional Love’’, Felicity Shoulders (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine1/10)

‘‘Map of Seventeen’’, Christopher Barzak (The Beastly Bride)
‘‘The Jaguar House, in Shadow’’, Aliette de Bodard (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine 7/10)
‘‘The Fortuitous Meeting of Gerard van Oost and Oludara’’, Christopher Kastensmidt (Realms of Fantasy 4/10)
“Plus or Minus’’, James Patrick Kelly (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine12/10)
‘‘Pishaach’’, Shweta Narayan (The Beastly Bride)
‘‘That Leviathan, Whom Thou Hast Made’’, Eric James Stone (Analog Science Fiction and Fact 9/10)
‘‘Stone Wall Truth’’, Caroline M. Yoachim (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine 2/10)

Novella The Alchemist, Paolo Bacigalupi (Audible; Subterranean)
‘‘Iron Shoes’’, J. Kathleen Cheney (Alembical 2)
The Lifecycle of Software Objects, Ted Chiang (Subterranean)
‘‘The Sultan of the Clouds’’, Geoffrey A. Landis (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine 9/10)
‘‘Ghosts Doing the Orange Dance’’, Paul Park (The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction 1-2/10)
‘‘The Lady Who Plucked Red Flowers beneath the Queen’s Window’’, Rachel Swirsky (Subterranean Magazine Summer ’10)

The Native Star, M.K. Hobson (Spectra)
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit UK; Orbit US)
Shades of Milk and Honey, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)
Echo, Jack McDevitt (Ace)
Who Fears Death, Nnedi Okorafor (DAW)
Blackout/All Clear, Connie Willis (Spectra)

The Ray Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation
Despicable Me, Pierre Coffin & Chris Renaud (directors), Ken Daurio & Cinco Paul (screenplay), Sergio Pablos (story) (Illumination Entertainment)
Doctor Who: ‘‘Vincent and the Doctor’’, Richard Curtis (writer), Jonny Campbell (director)
How to Train Your Dragon, Dean DeBlois & Chris Sanders (directors), William Davies, Dean DeBlois, & Chris Sanders (screenplay) (DreamWorks Animation)
Inception, Christopher Nolan (director), Christopher Nolan (screenplay) (Warner)
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Edgar Wright (director), Michael Bacall & Edgar Wright (screenplay) (Universal)
Toy Story 3, Lee Unkrich (director), Michael Arndt (screenplay), John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, & Lee Unkrich (story) (Pixar/Disney)

Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy
Ship Breaker, Paolo Bacigalupi (Little, Brown)
White Cat, Holly Black (McElderry)
Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins (Scholastic Press; Scholastic UK)
Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword, Barry Deutsch (Amulet)
The Boy from Ilysies, Pearl North (Tor Teen)
I Shall Wear Midnight, Terry Pratchett (Gollancz; Harper)
A Conspiracy of Kings, Megan Whalen Turner (Greenwillow)
Behemoth, Scott Westerfeld (Simon Pulse; Simon & Schuster UK)

For more information, visit http://www.sfwa.org/
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ll go for a liedown…

Rant/Addendum to “The View from the Other Side”


The one thing I often get told when I talk about the US/Anglophone dominance of the spec-fic market is some variant of “good translations are expensive, and the market is stretched so there is no money for it”. I’m sorry, that’s just not a valid reason.

Yes, I fully agree that a good translator is expensive. Translating, say, from French to English is more expensive than taking an English author direct. In this we totally agree. But…

But wanna take a guess as to how much a good translator from English into French costs, and how much cheaper it would be to buy a local author? ‘cos it’s known as a symmetrical problem, and we all have the same problems: the literary market is somewhat small (as opposed to TV, for instance), and overstretched.

Most non-Anglophone publishing houses have a fairly large Foreign Rights/Foreign Acquisitions department, which also handles translations. It’s an accepted part of the budget as much as paying authors for books and paying artists for cover art. Most Western Anglophone houses… don’t exactly seem to have the equivalent department. So the “we don’t have any money for translations” thing? Please don’t try to tell me that. It doesn’t stand.

I’ll accept the “there is no market for translations” as a valid point–but then I’ll ask you to start wondering: why is there no market for translations in the US/UK, and plenty in other countries?

Wrapping up…


H-3 (in this case, H meaning “holidays”, or the closest thing thereof). Arg. Will survive.

Currently reading: my back issues of Asimov’s (haven’t had time to open one all summer long). Really liked Nancy Fulda’s “Backlash”, a story of time-travel and fixing mistakes–a quick romp, but with all-too-believable depths about families, past mistakes (and a particularly nasty and realistic depiction of PTSD). Also, Mary Robinette Kowal’s “For Want of A Nail”, an AI story set on a generation ship, where the protagonists fix one set of problems to find another, worse one behind. Sparse and poignant. And from the July issue, Alice Sola Kim’s “The Other Graces”, a story about a Korean “yellow-trash”, which encompassed a bunch of things about immigration and fitting in.

Currently working on: wedding, wedding and wedding. With a sidedash of blog posts.

Currently making: Murgh Biryani, from Charmaine Solomon’s The Complete Asian Cookbook. Well, almost. Clever substitutions took place, ’cause my shelf spice isn’t that big, and I plain shorted out on saffron, making for rice that was rather whiter than expected. But yum yum.

Sekrit project upcoming in Asimov’s


So, about that sekrit project I mentioned way back in April? Looks like it’s gone public: my non-fiction piece, “The View from the Other Side”, about non-Western/non-Anglophone SF, will appear in the September issue of Asimov’s.

First time I have non-fiction in a major venue, on a fairly controversial topic. Should be fun…