As predicted, the event at the KGB Bar was a big success. Andy Duncan (above) knocked everybody dead with his reading of "Close Encounters," an original novelette which will appear in his new collection (forthcoming from PS Publishing next year), The Pottawatomie Giant and Other Stories. It was a killer story made even better by that beautiful Southern accent of Andy's. Seriously, somebody's got to issue a spken-word collection of his best stories -- all read by Andy. The man's good.
Which is what I said when I got up to read: "Andy is a tough act to follow -- but I can do it!" Then I ripped into "The Woman Who Shook the World-Tree," (not officially sold yet, but I've got a handshake agreement with Tor.com). It's a great reading-story because it's short, it's emotional, and it's a love story. Hard to go wrong with that.
Best of all, the two stories were so very different they weren't in competition with each other. It was apples and taxicabs. Mathematics and orange juice. Summer wine and Martian nights. If you enjoy readings at all, you're sorry you weren't there.
Also I got to see Andy and several old friends, so I had a great time.
And today is atypical because . . .
I plan to spend most of today just writing. Working on the Novel, having fun.
But tomorrow, it's back to the promotional grind. Tomorrow and Saturday I'll be at the Baltimore Book Festival. Here's my personal schedule, all at the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America space, E24-25:
Friday, September 23
Reading: Michael Swanwick
Acclaimed science fiction author Michael Swanwick will read from his works and talk about his science fiction and fantasy.
Group Signing, Chat & Raffles
Join authors Rosemary Edghill, Toby Devens, John Maclay, Michael Swanwick, Michael Sullivan, and Cindy Young-Turner to chat, have your books autographed, and win prizes.
Publishing as a Professional Writer in Speculative Fiction
Panelists Michael Swanwick, Catherine Asaro, and Toby Devens offer tips and answer questions about how to get started in genre fiction and conduct a successful career.
Saturday, September 24
1984--Are We There Yet?
Panelists Brenda Clough, Don Sakers, Alan Zendell, and Michael Swanwick discuss the social and political themes in science fiction, as in the tradition of the novel 1984. Science fiction offers a unique vehicle for examining the consequences of various political and sociolical phenomena by extrapolating them into the future. Just how provocative can you make such ideas? Is it ever too much? Come share your thoughts and ideas with our panelists.
And then I go home and lie down in a dark room with a damp cloth over my swollen head.
You can find the complete SFWA schedule for the Baltimore Book Festival here. Or you can check out the schedule for the entire bookfest here. Nice clean graphical design, by the way.