Have you ever gotten nostalgic for something you’ve never actually experienced? For me, one of those things is automats. Whenever I saw them in old movies, they fascinated me. The thought of all those different kinds of food behind those little doors, ranked behind those panes of glass just seemed so damned cool. I dig them so much that I actually put a super high tech one in Ghost Light Burn. Just because I could.
With all that’s been going on in the world, I have been understandably distracted. And as such, I forgot to share the good news that the latest installment of the Maverick Heart Cycle will be coming your way next year from Renaissance Press. It’s been a hard year, and it sure feels great to know that the adventures of Keene, Lexa-Blue, Ember and Vrick will continue a while longer!
I’ve been playing around with black and white photography since last Autumn, just seeing what I could come up with, often on the fly. I’ve compiled the results together into a new gallery, so if you’re interested, click here or on the menu link under the Photos page.
Global Frequency is a killer limited series written by Warren Ellis, with each issue drawn by a different artist. Miranda Zero runs a shadowy organization of people with special talents. Each has a super high tech phone and if it rings, they will be greeted with “You’re on the Global Frequency” and there will be some threat that must be stopped. And the receiver of that phone call has the special skills needed to deal with it.
The only regular characters are Zero herself and her operator, Aleph, who contacts the various recruits and coordinates the organization’s efforts. As such, you never know what, if any of the other characters are going to make it to the end of the story, which makes for a gripping read. Having a different artist on each issue keeps the look, feel, and mood of the stories fresh with each story, and Ellis crafts a series of exciting technothrillers about cutting edge threats.
I highly recommend this series. It’s intense and can get dark and violent at times, but it’s an enthralling read. There was even a pilot made back in 2005, starring Michelle Forbes as Miranda Zero (which may have been one of the most inspired casting choices ever!) but, alas, it was never picked up.
The lovely people over at Spoonie Author Blog interviewed me about my career as a spoonie author and my upcoming book, A Congress of Ships (the latest adventure in the Maverick Heart series)
Check it out here.
Galactum Year 143
*Where did you find this guy? He’s a complete nil.* She was using the node far more easily now, and though it, ey could tell that the thought of having a bioware link to Know-It-All embedded in her brain no longer made her skin crawl. Still, it made it easier for them to communicate until ey decided the time was right to reveal es true nature.
*Now, now, Meat. You weren’t much better yourself the first time you walked through that hatch. Give him a chance.*
The subject of their scrutiny, completely unaware of their opinions of his skills and personality, lay on the deck, his torso and head buried deep in the access panel. Continue reading “Overture (Part Three of Three)”
Galactum Year 139
She didn’t reach the landing pad until almost dusk, having had to wait at the placement office all day or risk losing her spot in the rota for a new temp assignment. As much as she hoped this new ship would be the one, she couldn’t risk missing out on further short term placements if it didn’t work out. Thankfully, the captain had understood and accommodated her schedule.
Despite the late hour, the day’s heat still lay heavy over her as she stepped down from the tram onto the landing pad’s apron. In the distance, the sun dipped low toward the horizon, lighting the sky with the colours of flame. She felt a tickle of sweat down her back under the starched, formal shirt, but she knew it had nothing to do with the heat. The back of her neck itched where her hair had been freshly shorn down to the skin. She fought the urge to touch the place where the braid she had grown since childhood no longer lay. Continue reading “Overture (Part Two of Three)”
Galactum Year 138
Jaim Somro’s life ended in the burnt, angry glare of a dying star, the ship his only companion.
The Maverick Heart hung in the fading light of the aged sun, as close to the raging shockwaves and radiation as ey could without risk, held there by constant adjustments to es drive field. Waiting for the end to finally come.
Meanwhile, the human lay small and frail on one of the couches, wrapped in a well-worn blanket, waxen skin bathed in ruddy light. Each breath the man took ever more laboured.
The ship remembered that blanket and the world it had come from in perfect detail. Ey remembered the moment the human had picked it up in the shop, remembered knowing the moment he had decided to buy it. Continue reading “Overture (Part One of Three)”
We weren’t huggers when I was a child. I have a very specific memory that my mind has labelled as the first time I was hugged, though I don’t know if my recollections can be trusted on this issue. It was in high school, by a friend, and I can’t have gone that long. Can I?
My parents were born in England in the early part of the 20th century. They were lovely people and I miss them deeply. However, my dad was not an overly sentimental man. He had little time or patience for overly emotional gestures, and was deeply interested in social justice and fairness. He was also fair and expected us to do the best we could, pushing when we needed it, but not blaming us for our failures. My mother, I think, was the more emotional one of the two, though I think she pushed it down and maintained a reserve she didn’t necessarily feel to stay in line with my father’s natural reticence.
I remember being fed, clothed and cared for. I remember we laughed a lot and our home was always open to friends and even strangers who needed a refuge or a meal or just a place to spend a holiday. My parents knew what it meant to come to a new country and start over, and they never forgot the kindnesses that others had given them. We often had other newcomers in our home for Christmas.
But I don’t remember hugs. Continue reading “All Touch and No Contact”
“When I think of home
I think of a place
where there’s love overflowing”
Sorry to have gone MIA for the last few weeks, but there has been a lot going on since I blogged last, and much of it has to do with home. The idea of home. The reality of home.
Like so many other people, I am not a native Torontonian. In fact, I used to joke that it always shocked me when I met someone who actually WAS from here. I’m from Saskatchewan originally, and lived there for thirty five years before I moved to Toronto. Because I lived there for so long, most of my remaining family is there, as well as many of my dearest friends. I like to go home every year to see everyone and spend time seeing people who have been in my life, if not for the whole span, then for decades, going back as far as high school.
And that’s where the duality comes in. We need words for “the home where I live” and “the home I come from.” I wonder if other languages make this linguistic distinction. Continue reading “Home”