Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Publisher's Weekly. Starred Review. Holy Crap.

My publisher, Brett Savory, sent me a clipping this afternoon. It's from a rag called Publisher's Weekly. Apparently they publish book reviews. They published a review of my book. With a star next to it.

Here is what it said:

Monstrous Affections David Nickle. ChiZine (LPG of Canada, dist.), $18.95 paper (292p) ISBN 978-0-9812978-3-5

Bleak, stark and creepy, Stoker-winner Nickle's first collection will delight the literary horror reader. A jarring cover illustration by Erik Mohr prepares the reader for 13 terrifying tales of rural settings, complex and reticent characters and unexpected twists that question the fundamentals of reality. All are delivered with a certain grace, creating a sparse yet poetic tour of the horrors that exist just out of sight. Standout stories include “Janie and the Wind,” where a battered, abandoned woman does what she needs to survive; “Other People's Kids,” a disturbing examination of the razor-thin moment dividing childhood from maturity and the hand holding that razor; and “The Pit Heads,” a phenomenal story about the cold remnants of a Canadian mining town and the true cost of beauty. This ambitious collection firmly establishes Nickle as a writer to watch. (Nov.)


Holy crap.

Monday, September 28, 2009

The Radejastians

I have been remiss, yard-apes. Tesseracts Thirteen, the anthology of fearful fables edited by Nancy Kilpatrick and David Morrell, has been out for a month, and it was only last week that I posted a sample of my story "The Radejastians" on The Devil's Exercise Yard. When Tesseracts Eleven came out, I put up "Swamp Witch and the Tea-drinking Man" months before the book came out. Same deal for "Wylde's Kingdom" and Tesseracts Twelve.

So last week, I put up a little bit of "The Radejastians." It is right here. Perhaps it will persuade some of you to read the rest. Which is available in Tesseracts Thirteen, edited by Nancy Kilpatrick and David Morrell.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Word on the Street

... that being the annual outdoor book/magazine/street food festival that happens this Sunday at Queen's Park Circle in Toronto - not the sly rumor.

I'm going to be there. At CZP's booth, which is #325 (don't worry, they have maps!), trying to convince passing bibliophiles to pick up a copy of Monstrous Affections. I'm not going to be there all the run from 11-6 this coming Sunday September 27. But I'm going to be there for most of it. And the book will be there the whole time. Unless all of you reading this show up before 2 and buy them all.

That would be okay too.

Bob and Dave and Claude's Flash-Flash Fiction Contest

Yes, you read that right. We're having a flash fiction contest, Bob Boyczuk and Claude Lalumière and me. It's part of an ongoing attempt to 1) find and promote new writers of extraordinarily short fiction and 2) get our ChiZine Publications collections of short fiction in front of said writers.

The rules of the contest are spelled out here, but here's the gist: We're looking for really short stories, and we'd like them to be less than 300 words. I myself have never written a story that short, and am not convinced it is even possible. My story The Mayor Will Make A Brief Statement and Then Take Questions is just under 500 words, and it barely makes any sense at all. But I am willing to be proven wrong, as long as the story actually comes in at less than 300 words (we're going to count) and shows up before November 30, 2009. The winner and second and third place entries see their stories published on the CZP website. The winner gets all our story collections: my Monstrous Affections; Claude's Objects of Worship; and Bob's Horror Stories and Other Horror Stories. Second and third place winners get to pick the one they think they'll like best.

So get writing, yard-apes. There's not much time between now and November 30.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Monstrous Affections is now available...

Or to put it another way:


Just got back from a lunch-time trip to The World's Biggest Bookstore in Toronto. And I am mighty pleased to report that the story collection of which you've heard so much, Monstrous Affections, is on the shelf there. To be specific, four very-recently-signed-by-the-author copies are there, in the Science fiction/Fantasy section (apparently there is a cataloging issue that prevents it from being shelved in the Horror section, where it might do better). But no matter: Mortica, the bookseller looking after the department, got me to sign copies, and also the lone copy of The Claus Effect there. And we had a talk about vampire fiction and the relative virtues of Christmas and Halloween and just exactly how cool Erik Mohr's fantastic cover was.

Then she left me alone to snap this picture:

And this one here, of fellow CZP author Claude Lalumiere's debut collection Objects of Worship, over in the "L"s:

Addendum, September 23

After some not-too-obsessive-really noodling around on the Chapters-Indigo site, it appears as though the book is out in quite a few Chapters-Indigo stores in towns, cities and rural power centres across the country. Brett Savory, CZP's honcho, informs me that had I bothered to look, I would have found CZP titles like Robert Wiersema's novella The World More Full of Weeping and Daniel A. Rabuzzi's The Choir Boats at the WBB too. This is because CZP has signed up with the Literary Press Group, which has been pushing ChiZine titles to retailers across the land with fiendish deliberation, to no less dire an end than total world domination. Or failing that, solid market penetration...

And I believe I have erred in linking Morticia to Jessica's blog. But I still want to link to Jessica's blog on sf at the World's Biggest Bookstore. And so I do. Right here.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Tesseracts Thirteen: Liftoff

The launch of Tesseracts Thirteen - the scary-story edition of the long-running Canadian sf anthology series - was, by all accounts, a shrieking, quivering success yesterday. There was a huge crowd of authors - a somewhat larger crowd of readers (always a good sign at these things) - and a healthily-diminishing stack of books.

Karen took a break from her photographer duties, but our friend Do-Ming Lum snapped a good gazillion shots, which will soon be showing up at EDGE's Totally Tesseracts blog. Here's one he took of all the authors, which should give you an idea of the scope of the thing:

From left to right: Allison Baird, Jean-Louis Trudel, Jill Snider Lum, Edo van Belkom, Kelley Armstrong, David Nickle, Andrea Schlecht, Suzanne Church, Michael Kelly (photo by Do-Ming Lum)

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Off to the Tesseracts Thirteen Launch...

... and for those who can't make it, to Bakka Phoenix books, at three, may I present some John Adams. With Lego.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Tesseracts Thirteen launches this Saturday

No, it's not a boat, or a rocket, or a tirade. Tesseracts Thirteen is the latest edition of the long-running sf anthology series for and by Canadians, and when I say it launches I mean that there is a big book-selling party in its honor, and it's happening this Saturday.

We've spoken of this before in the Exercise Yard, so I'm just re-iterating for those yard-apes who are late to the game.

The launch takes place at 3 p.m. at the Bakka-Phoenix bookstore in Toronto. It's located at 697 Queen Street West - just past Bathurst. I'll be there, perhaps reading from my story "The Radejastians." Others will too: namely, Kelley Armstrong, Alison Baird, Suzanne Church, Michael Kelly, Jill Snider-Lum, Andrea Schlecht and Edo Van Belkom.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

John McDaid is a mensch...

When I say John McDaid, I mean the John McDaid who blogs tirelessly about Rhode Island politics, who writes science fiction so well he won the Theodore Sturgeon Award for short fiction with his first sale, "Jigoku no mokushiroku", in 1995, and with whom I hang out for one week a year at the Gibraltar Point Centre for the Arts on the Toronto Islands. When our mutual friends Cory Doctorow and Alice Taylor got married last year, John wrote them this story, (Nothing But) Flowers, and you can read it for free.

Yesterday, he also gave me and my story collection Monstrous Affections a very kind shout-out on his blog, which you can read right here.

Thanks, John!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Monstrous Affections is available for pre-order

Monstrous Affections, the story collection of mine of which you've heard so much, is now available for pre-order at ChiZine Publications*, which is the most righteous way to pre-order the book. You can click right here, make the necessary arrangements, and the book will be delivered to your home / business / anonymous post office box / loved one's domicile, in October.

ChiZine's making all of their books available for pre-order right now, so if you want to buy 'em all, you can click right here and do that too.


* Yes, yes. I know two posts back, I said it wouldn't be available until October 1, after having originally said it would be available September 1. We're all entitled to a couple of mistakes and mistaken corrections of those mistakes now and then. We're also entitled to get it right once in awhile.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Tesseracts Thirteen is in bookstores

Actually, it's been in bookstores for a little while unofficially. But now the first-ever terror-themed Tesseracts is officially out from EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing. Editors of Tesseracts Thirteen are Nancy Kilpatrick and David Morrell, and contributors include me among others.

There'll be a launch in Toronto September 12; we already spoke of that, one post back. We will do so again, closer to the date.

But bottom line: T13's a beautiful book. My contribution, "The Radejastians," is quite grim. It starts like this:

We three ate lunch outside in the springtime. There was a picnic table under a small tree, well out of sight of the loading docks, and it is there we met: Viktor and Ruman and I. We had all come from the old country, the same old country, and I suppose that marked us... not in the same way, but as the same, all the same.

And it ends up worse.