What shall I see and what shall I learn while I’m away? I don’t know, but I’m looking forward to finding out. In the meantime, here’s a brief, ten-photo essay which I provided for a display at the conference. The organizers asked for ten pictures of each participants engaged in his or her hobbies. Which presented a problem for me because writing is my hobby. When I’m not writing to earn a living, I like to relax by writing something whimsical and unprofitable, like my biographical essay on Hope Mirrlees or “Fool Moon,” a love letter to Marianne which I wrote as a story on the cover of a moon-shaped lamp I bought at IKEA.
Nevertheless, I do get away from my desk occasionally, so I chose ten photos that give some idea of the range of things I most enjoy and sent them to Science Fiction World (the sponsor of the conference, as well as being a major SF magazine and the publisher of the Chinese translation of my Bones of the Earth), along with the following captions. I have no idea if they’re going to use the captions or not. Personally, I think they should. But that might not fit in with their display.
1. I Get Involved With Public Art. (This is in Stamford, Connecticut.)
2. I Write About Neglected Fantasy Writers. (Here I am, laying a rose on Hope Mirrlees’ family memorial in Glasgow, Scotland.).
3. I Waste Hours with Friends in a Sidewalk Cafe in Croatia.
4. I Spend Time With My Beautiful Wife, Marianne Porter.
5. I Interview Vladimir Mikhailov. (l-r: Mikhailov, me, Alexei Bezouglyi, translating)
6. I Speak With a Human Eyeball at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
7. I Have Dinner With My Friends, Russian Writer Andrew Matveev and His Wife Natalya Matveeva in Yekaterinburg, Russia.
8. I Hang Out With My Imagination.
9. I Study the History of Rocketry. (Inside the house of Sergei Korolev, “the Great Designer,” in Moscow.)
10. I Dance With Turtles.