Wednesday, December 21, 2005

The ED SF Project

What a body misses during seven years of absence from the internet:

Fantastic scifi fiction on zines like SCI FICTION which is shutting down after giving the world five and a half years of fantastic short scifi for free.

I caught this announcement on the OWW mailing list and want to post it here for scifi lovers everywhere. Visit to claim a story for appreciation.

catherine morrison wrote:
We're all saddened and angered by the news that SCI FICTION is shutting
down. Not much to be done, but Dave Schwartz would like to give it the
best sendoff possible - he's launched The ED SF Project
to celebrate SciFiction:

SciFiction is ending after five and a half years of great fiction. I
don't think we should let this go without, at the very least,
showing our appreciation for the site and the work Ellen Datlow and
so many talented writers have done.

Here's my idea.

By my count there are 320 stories archived at the site. I'm willing
to bet that there are that many SF writers/critics/fans/what have
you who have some sort of presence on the web. So I'm thinking,
let's all of us write an appreciation of one of the stories.

It doesn't need to be something long -- it could be a few
paragraphs, or it could be in-depth; it could be a critical analysis
or just a reaction to the story. Just something that focuses on the
fiction and shows how much impact the site has had. Remember, this
is an appreciation. A celebration. Pick a story you love, or
discover a new one by reading through the archives. Discover for
yourself just what we're lo sing. Then let's give it the best
sendoff possible.

Claim a story in the comments at the site
; first come, first serve.


So I went over and I've asked about Freeing the Angels, Pat Cadigan and Chris Fowler. Keeping my fingers crossed and hoping it's not been claimed yet. I really loved this's just my kind of scifi/specfic.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

James Stevens- Arce Interview

My interview with James Stevens-Arce, award winning novelist and author of the scifi novel, Soulsaver, has been published on The Sword Review.

James is a busy fellow and I appreciate his taking the time out to answer the questions I sent him. To learn more about James, you can click on this link leading to his website.

Another thing that had me going oh wow, was discovering that James wrote a couple of songs for Mark Anthony who was once married to Dayanara Torres. Yes, the Dayanara Torres who took all of Philippines by storm. A nice common denominator, distant, but still common enough ;)

Do a google with Dayanara Torres and you'll find a mass of links generated by the lady's name. I can't paste them on here right now, mainly because my computer is acting up. I am using an old one that insists on giving me error messages everytime I use explorer.


Well, here's one link anyway:

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Hay(na)ku in Dutch

Tom Beckett writes about his obsession with the form Hay(na)ku . I have to confess to developing an obsession for hay(na)ku too.

I think what makes this form so appealing is how it lends the writer wings and allows a person ( like me) to transcend barriers of language. I found myself entering spaces I'd stopped dreaming of, like this space of writing something in Dutch. My first effort...years ago...put a temporary stop to any writing because I imagined that my inability to write in Dutch meant I would never be able to write anything worth reading anyway.


I've really been obsessing about hay(na)ku and wrote this Dutch hay(na)ku that put a smile on my hubby's face and made him say: Yes, it is a good poem.


Mijn Nederlander
(my "Nederlander"/dutchman)

Nederland (Netherlands
was koud (was cold
maar vol magie. (filled with magic

Op’t eerste gezicht ( at first sight
was ik ( I knew
verliefd. ( love

Lege ( empty
velden ontroerden (fields moved
mij. Ik dacht, ( me. I thought,

Hier ( here
zal ik ( I shall
altijd blijven wonen ( make my home

Eerste impressies vervagen ( first impressions fade
We vergeten. ( We forget.
Eerste ( First

passie ( passion
wordt gewoon. ( becomes common.
Steeds moet ik ( I must always

onthouden ( remember
waarom ik ( why I
jou had gekozen ( chose you out

van alle mensen ( of all people
ter wereld ( in the
vond ( world,

ik ( you
jou het ( were the
allerliefst, mijn Nederlander. ( sweetest, my Nederlander

Toch blijf ik ( even so I
voor altijd( remain always
Allochtoon. ( foreigner


The Dutch version is more poetic than the English, which is a first for me. Thanks to The Chatelaine for bringing this form into the world.

As my son says, "Hay(na)ku Talaga!"

Monday, December 12, 2005

The First Hay(na)ku Anthology

To celebrate The First Hay(na)ku Anthology, Eileen Tabios has announced a Hay(na)ku Holiday contest.

Today, I got my copy of The First Hay(na)ku Anthology in the mail. I find myself understanding why this form is addictive, it is is addictive.
I even attempted to write fantasy hay(na)ku which I sent to the speculative poetry criticque group on The Sword Review .

I haven't written poetry in a long time...but because of The Chatelaine I find myself attempting the form.

(*to knowledgeable reader, please forgive my errors.*)

they say
indicates onset of

Growing old
in cold countries

my brain cells
freeze over

one by
one. Until I

don't remember where
I left


Reading and reading. I carry poetry books around the house with me.

Have found Hay(na)ku
will attempt

Thursday, December 08, 2005

feast days and computer breakdown

Our computer broke down, crashed, went bonkers, gave up the ghost. How long before we get it back and whether it will still contain all my files is a risk we didn't want to take. Thank God for a brother who can advise his non-tech sister over the telephone. I learned that constantly pressing on F8 while computer is in start up mode will lead me to a screen that allows me to start up said computer in safe mode, thereby allowing me to download all important files ( fotos, word files, emails and all ) onto a disk or a usb stick. Except, my dear hubby saved everything on a DVD disk. A drive which this interim computer does not have. Ha, ha. Joke's on me.

Happily, I do have some files stashed away on the stick that I can still work on, like my beloved Inhabitants of the Earth which I'm working on for the seventh time this year.

Feast days brought me a package from the USA :) How wonderful packages make me feel. This was exciting, a load of books from The Chatelaine for identifying the wabi sabi in Post Bling Bling. This is actually the first time I've ever won anything like this, and I was quite excited about it.

Seven books of poetry and prose to enrich the spirit. My spirit is getting fed, and fattened and I find myself attempting poetry again. I don't dare publish my toddling attempts just yet.

Which leads me to confess that I am the person living in the Netherlands whom Eileen refers to in her blog. For some strange reason the bank where I bank did not know what I meant when I asked them about checks and money-orders.

I found myself facing a bunch of bank employees who wanted to know what I was buying and where I was buying it from and why this company I'm ordering a book from doesn't accept credit card payments. I explained I wanted either a check or a money-order and was told that I could do a bank transfer.

Enough to drive this allochtoon (foreigner) crazy. I am grateful for the solution Eileen proposed as I wasn't really looking forward to braving another team of dutch speaking bank employees who wanted to pry into my private purchases, and to be honest my Dutch speaking abilities sort of melt away when confronted by officious looking people who treat me like I came from some backward mountain. I lapse into english which leaves them looking at me like stunned giraffes. He, he. While most dutch do speak and understand english, a good number of those in this small town will look at you like you've grown an extra arm or something.

I think one advantage of living in cities like Leiden or Amsterdam or Utrecht is the willingness of city dwellers to speak a language that isn't their own. Unlike Bodegraven where most folks will hesitate to speak english, shopkeepers in the big cities are almost eager to demonstrate their mastery of another language that isn't dutch.

But this Bodegraafs hesitation comes from lack of exposure, I suppose. Just as I was shy about speaking Dutch in the beginning ( from not having used it before ), I think Dutch people who don't use English on a regular basis are quite shy about using it and perhaps being confronted with someone who speaks english sort of disrupts their comfort zone in some way.

Anyway, that's how I logicize it...