Tag Archives: Science-fiction

Fiction River 21

Couverture du Fiction River no 21 Avec mon nom sur la couverture!

Cover of the Fiction River 21, this issue edited by Kerrie L. Hugues, with my funny SF story  Closing the Big Bang.  The Fiction River collection is directed by Dean Wesley Smith and Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Still basking in the thrill of reading my name on the cover and the warm and glowing introduction that Kristine wrote for the story.

Get your copy on Amazon.com, Amazon Canada or Kobo!

 

Occupied October

This October is such a busy month that I am lagging behing my posts.

So here is a placeholder post while I organize the mailing of my SF novels overseas, make frenetic preparations for my  depart for the Utopiales festival, and put up new e-books, tinker with websites, recuperate from my Oakville half marathon­ race… and run to a scout camp this week-end!

More dealines piling on

So the next Signing table comics will have to wait a little!

A Cousin Named Entropy

The latest issue of Galaxies includes my SF short-story, La Cousine Entropie (A Cousin named Entropy).

This is my third publication in this French SF magazine, occurring shortly after my publication in Géante Rouge 23. La cousine Entropie  is a long-winded, galaxy-spanning hard SF story, with some bits of humor. And there is more than one cousin…

IMG_0420 Galaxies40EnveloppeW

The text was commissioned by Jean-Pierre Laigle, who sent me an extensive article on the topic of cosmanthropy (that you’ll find in this issue).

Cosmanthropy?

Imagine humans colonizing the entire volume of space, not only planet surfaces, without environmental suits. That trope is less often exploited in science fiction, because of the challenges. Three authors who addressed this topic are interviewed: Jorge Luiz Caliph (Contact diagrams), Laurent Genefort (Thick-skins) and Linda Nagata (The tides of Saturn, which is published in French in this issue).

I remember reading with pleasure Les Peaux Epaisses (Thick Skins) by Laurent Genefort, featuring gen-modified workers in order to survive in the vacuum (and shamefully exploited). I am reading Memory by Linda Nagata, a planet-opera.

Spider and Jeanne Robinson had created Star Dance, a title also mentioned in the article by Jean-Pierre. Star Dance chronicle the birth of Homo caelestis. Jeanne was an accomplished dancer and very Zen. She left us, regretfully in 2010, but the Star Dance project page is still there to make us dream.

What Tears Us Down

 

92WhatTearsUsDown

 

Reactions to the Brussels attacks on social media have devolved into an ugly blame game that solves nothing.  And a fierce joy explodes when some assumptions reinforces our established prejudices!

Unfortunately, Facebook is an easy outlet. Compared to what one can express safely in the lounge with friends, the audience is the entire planet.

During my meeting in Oregon with pros writers, an important directive (given along with  the earthquake and tsunami warnings) was “Do not talk about politics!” Many of my professional colleagues chose not to intervene on heated Internet debates  (and in the USA, they are in elections!) as they have lost too many friends .

I could talk in length about the origins of the scourge, and the mental conditioning that is now called “radicalization”. Mental cages grow everywhere, sects or radicals recruit even the young educated or the rich (Patty Hearst, anyone?)

It only takes a small seed of frustration, fueled by the fertilizer of prejudice. Over time, the mental cage produces its evil flowers, sweet fruits of hatred providing a “hit” of pleasure, inflating the ego with the steroids of a “good” cause.

I could also talk about polluters of sources, spreading seeds of anger in the medias. Those professionnals emits a thinly veiled call to the lynching of a religious community or ethnic group, deemed guilty  by association because some of the assassins may have been recruited among them.

I could talk about heavy weapons manufacturers who make fruitful business with the States that need to protect themselves, and covert business with shady groups.

I heard the worst insults this week; several of my Facebook friends have left their reserve to the locker room. Those issues that tear us down concern all authors.

We, the creators of comics, magicians of words, regardless of the size of our audience, have a responsibility not to inflame the debate with simplistic hate calls.

To write is to weave a dream, to offer a glimpse into a future different from a brand of capitalism focused on fear. As a science fiction writer, I want to feed the imagination to build, through education and respect, a more convivial world.

 

Running Hills, Writing Series

 

91SharpHill

When I began my first science fiction series, the first novel of the space-opera was a self-contained story, quite straightforward to write. The second felt more difficult, and I thought the third would be the last, but the story arc spilled out and I wrote a fourth (and last!) of the Jules-Verne saga series.

It felt like my training running hills. The first time is easy, but by the fourth time, my legs were almost quitting under me! That fourth and last novel of the series was the most difficult to write, since I had to wrap up the leads to complete the neat story arc.

Books as Boats

 

90BooksBoats

 

Books are like boats.

Readers swim from one reading to the next, and some boats are more easy to access than others.

(I hear it often: How come my  genius novel cannot find any readers? ) For my science fiction novels, I often add lexicons! But there are other ways to lower the bar for your readers, by shorter chapters, for instance, or not crowding too many characters in a scene, etc.

Your writer’s task is paradoxically to help your readers to get on board!

Side Effects of Growth

89CreationPoverty

Giving big sums to charity via our own Foundations can be rewarding…  and it helps evading taxes. But most of us do it with any recognition.

So this demo tried to follow me as I strive to found my small company offering something, but eventually ending up only speculating. Speculating is needed to render exchanges more efficient, like oil lubrifying the mechanic. But too much wealth in speculator’s hands begets a sea of oil in which float a few services/goods. Hence a relative scarcity of money for most valuable endeavours (education, health, transportation…) and new jobs.

I don’t have a billion in my pockets to create jobs. But I am training myself to put every profit dollar to good use; invested away to make other work for me.

(The French words aura de respectabilité means “appearing respectable”. )

 

Evolution of the Subs

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86TheDeadlines

Most mags now have “dormant” submission periods. Yes, one does open its sub page at midnight.

I can’t finish without mentioning that one brave editor, David G. Hartwell (of Tor Books), passed away yesterday. He was always nice to the new authors and visited often our Canadian SF conventions (here at Anticipation but I also met him in Boréal 2010 and Ad Astra 2014). He and his exuberantly colored ties will be missed.  

My Resolution Run

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85NightRunResolution

Yes, we do watch the X-Files !

The Resolution Run is an annual event by organized by the Running Room. They hold bi-weekly runs open to every one, and in winter it is better to run in a group, because of the danger of falling on ice.

There was not much snow at the 2015 RR, but half-melted, darkened snowpacks were abundant. Despite what the comic may let you think, there were crews presents, cheering us at various points on the 5-km route, so no “dark” places. 

It was a good run with the moon peeking through the branches, ominous and magnificent.

Last 2015 pencilled page…

Adalou page 43 brouillonCoul_100dpiFonce

From an ongoing SF project, Wind Mistress, page 43, pencils. Last page of 2015!

Set in Chaaas’ universe.