His novels are hard to classify – part steampunk, part fantasy, a little science fiction. He creates wonderfully detailed and complete cities, continents and worlds, with fully drawn populations and languages and cultures. All of which are so finely drawn as to seem historical and familiar.
This book of 21 stories of varying length and style – screenplays, novellas and short stories – is a smorgasbord. He displays the depth and breadth of his imagination and his command of language and narrative. These stories can serve as an introduction, an “amuse bouche” if you will.
While I know that no one reads my blog, or at least very few people do – there are so many thousands of blogs that who can possibly read them all – I feel the need to spew my desperately important imagination into the aether, and post more ephemera to this site. It may be an exercise in futility, but at least it makes me feel as if I am in some way confirming my humble existence.
And I will admit that I don’t often read your blog either. But when I am struck with the urge to pull my head out of my shell and take a look around, I’ll spend some time sifting through the list of blogs that I have gathered. And I always try to find some sort of comment to leave. Clicking on the “like” button doesn’t count. I like to think about what you post and say SOMETHING about it. I think that should become standard blog etiquette. I know it is one way to encourage people to visit my little tiny scrap of the internets.
I subscribed a while ago to Tin House, a quarterly magazine of short fiction and poetry, and while thumbing through a back issue, came across an ad for The Baffler, a similar publication but apparently of a more non-fictional political bent (though who’s to say what is fiction and what is not these days). I have not seen an actual issue yet, but may very well pony up the extravagance of $25 to see what it is all about.
Speaking of reading, when I find that my pile of books-to-read is dwindling, I usually go first to Better World Books. These folks have a unique business model – they sell used books (and they seem to have a back log of thousands of titles) for pretty cheap, as little as $2.95. Your order is shipped at no cost, and in the ordering process you can opt to add a bit to make your order carbon neutural (though I have not investigated into exactly what this means). They even offer e-books. AND if you have books in your library that you either won’t read or won’t read again, or if you are just feeling altruistic, you can print out a prepaid shipping label and send off a box of donations. AND, for every book you buy, Better World donates a book to a worthy cause. So save a tree, buy a used book. They are used, but they still work just fine.