First draft anyway. It ended up around 35,000 words, about 10,000 more than I thought it would. Maybe there’s a bunch of crap to cut, or maybe I’ll add enough to get it up to 40,000 (which is officially a novel).
The title, for now, is The Silverberg Business. Which is purposely Dashiell Hammett-ish.
It appears that the cheaper edition of The Painting and the City is out of print. The expensive one is still available.
Just came across an interesting essay from June 2012 by Matt Cheney on Robert Aickman’s story “The Stains.” It’s once of my favorite Aickman stories. Cheney gets extra points for using the word ineffable.
There’s a great piece on the NPR website about a reissue of one of the Big Boys’ records (article + video interview with surviving founding members Tim Kerr and Chris Gates). From March. Which is when I meant to post something about. People often overlook the March-like quality of July.
I don’t know if there was anything on the radio. NPR does stand for National Public Radio, not website with video. But that’s okay. It’s not like I ever heard their music on the radio.
Available from Light in the Attic Records.
I’ve written about the Big Boys before. And maybe I will again.
Some time ago (maybe April 2012, because that’s the date on the web page), Liz Hand posted a link to an article about a friend of hers at the Smithsonian who has made models based on pictures of fanciful flying machines.
Looking at the models gave me ideas…I wanted to try making some myself, and wanted to use them in fiction. I filed the article away for the future. And have since used one of the aircraft and its artist in “Untitled Western Novella.” The story is set on the gulf coast of Texas in 1888. One of the artists profiled in the Smithsonian article, Charles Dellschau, was a German-born butcher who ended up in Houston, TX; he created his art-and-tales about flying machines around the time of my story.
I’ve modified his life to fit the story: his exploits were supposed to have occurred a number of years earlier than 1888.
Another Dellschau sighting occurred last week. My friend Doug Lain, he of the intriguing-sounding forthcoming novel Billy Moon, posted a link to an article on a neat blog called Messy Nessy Chic. There’s also a new book about him.
Here’s a great song by the Minutemen about being the Minutemen (and about life, art, writing, performing). It’s an acoustic version, so to get the full impact of Mike Watt’s bass you’ll have to buy the CD (or one of those downloadable digital formats). ”The typewriter’s on but my head is empty and to really find me I’ve got to look inside me.” is a situation I’m familiar with (metaphorically or course—I haven’t actually used a typewriter in a very very long time).
And here’s a site called Corndogs, with some Minutemen information, other videos, and concert downloads. Mike Watt’s website is linked on the right.
Every few weeks, I’ve been getting a letter from a nice insurance agent extolling the benefits of his company’s product. He says: “The difference between auto insurers is often just a few dollars. However, the difference between the protection you get can be much bigger.” It’s very nice of him to let me know about such important issues. I wonder if many people get in touch with him after receiving his letters. Although I don’t need to change my insurance, I thought I would check in with him to see if perhaps he would like to buy some books. I sent him the following email, which I am also duplicating here.
Thanks for the letters you’ve been sending me every month letting me know how important it is to save on my car insurance. At present, I’m happy enough with my provider but I will certainly let you know if that changes.
Meanwhile, I thought I’d let you know that I have several books available. I’m sure that you, like many other intelligent people, enjoy reading strange, thought-provoking fiction. Here are some links to places where you can purchase my books.
In Springdale Town. This was my first book. Unfortunately, it is out of print, but you can find used copies. For example, on ebay. Or, if you like modern ways to read, it’s available as an ebook. This is the publisher’s website, which has buying links to Amazon and other places.
Circus of the Grand Design. Technically still in print, but I haven’t seen a royalty from the publisher in many years, so you might want to look for a used copy someplace like half.com. Or ebook.
Psychological Methods To Sell Should Be Destroyed. Available from the publisher here.
The Painting and the City. Available from the publisher here in either slipcased edition or regular hardback. Or, you can get it as a downloadable audiobook from audible. Or even in French!
Cool story by Marly Youmans here (you can read or listen, or both); and interview about the story here.