Scott Nicolay

Ana Kai Tangata

Tag: African American

Nisi Shawl and Cynthia Ward: Midwifing the Other: Nurturing Diversity in Weird and Speculative Lit | The Outer Dark: Episode 31 — FEBRUARY 17, 2016

writingtheotherAuthors/editors Nisi Shawl and Cynthia Ward join Scott for a very special show focusing on diversity in Weird and speculative fiction. They start by recounting the story behind the origins of their Writing the Other workshop/book, its connections to Clarion West, the next set of upcoming online classes (March 13), its impact on spec-lit writers over its 25-year history, and their hopes for an updated book to reflect new language and examples. The conversation proceeds to positive directions with diverse characters, how writers need not to be afraid to write what they don’t know but they do need to research, the concept of “parallax” and W.E.B. DuBois, writing the other as a collaborative process, why treating equally or fairly doesn’t mean not seeing color, gender or other differences, rewarding examples of people who learned and gained courage from the Writing the Other program to increase Lost Trails Forgotten Tales of the Weird West Final Cover 6-26-2015their own representation of people of color as characters, teaching the “reptile brain,” the good example of Joe R Lansdale, and midwifing works by Sarah Smith and South African writer Nick Wood (Azanian Bridges. NewCon Press, Nov 2016). Cynthia and Nisi also talk about some of their own written and edited works. Cynthia discusses her edited anthology Lost Trails: Forgotten Tales of the Weird West, which features stories about non-white characters on the frontier, in the context of growing interest in the Weird Western in books, film and graphic novels, a second volume on the way, and several novels in progress, including Night Rising, the first in The Return of the Dark trilogy, an apocalyptic magic story set in Tucson which she calls a “cozy catastrophe.” Nisi reveals some of the back story about Stories for Chip: A Tribute to Samuel R. Delaney, which she co-edited with Bill Campbell (Rosarium Publishing), which has received everfairconsiderable praise, as well as contemplating her interaction with horror and exploring a different relation to death and the status quo in the African diaspora in her 2008 James Tiptree Jr.  Award-winning collection Filter House, confronting steampunk’s embedded imperialism in her upcoming Belgian Congo set novel Everfair (Tor, Sept. 2016), encountering ghosts in her middle grade novel Speculation, and much more. The conversation concludes with their recommended writers including Bill Campbell, J. Comer (Planetary Stories), Ayize Jama-Everett ( whose works include The Liminal War and The Entropy of Bones), Australian feminist writer Sylvia Kelso (The Blackston Gold and The Amberlight series), Aqueduct Press’s L. Timmel Duchamp (The Red Rose Rages Bleeding, The Marq’ssan Cycle, and more), Nigerian writer Tade Thompson (Making Wolf and Rosewater, Sept. 2016), Matt Ruff (Lovecraft Country) and Amy Wolf (The Misses Bronte’s Establishment).

gamutNews From the Weird: Special Guest Richard Thomas gives The Outer Dark listeners an exclusive sneak peek at the exciting plans for his highly anticipated new neo-noir spec-lit fiction magazine Gamut, featuring a who’s who of writers, artists and staff, and its Kickstarter campaign.

This archival episode will be available again at This Is Horror soon. In the meantime, subscribe at iTunes  or Blubrry to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

Next week’s guest: Will Ludwigsen, author of In Search Of and Others (Lethe Press).

Please vote for The Outer Dark in the People’s Choice Project iRadio Podcast Awards. http://www.projectiradio.com/podcast-awards/

storiesforchipOrder The Outer Dark T-shirts at SkurvyInk: http://skurvyink.com/products/outerdark-shirt

More Links:

Bert and I: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EPGf77t9hRA

Stagecoach Mary: http://www.blackcowboys.com/maryfields.htm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_Leopold%27s_Ghost

Review of Lovecraft Country by Nisi Shawl: http://www.seattletimes.com/entertainment/books/matt-ruffs-lovecraft-country-horrors-in-1950s-america/

http://www.thedarkhousepress.com/

lovecraftctryShow credits:

Host/Executive Producer: Scott Nicolay

Co-Host, News From the Weird/Producer: Justin Steele

Associate Producer/Show Notes/Publicist: Anya Martin

Logo Design: Nick “The Hat” Gucker

Music: Michael Griffin

Craig Laurance Gidney: Writing the Beautiful Mess | The Outer Dark: Episode 14 — OCTOBER 6, 2015

12120007_625217597615975_7812391686514725385_oCraig Laurance Gidney recalls pivotal early experiences at Clarion West 1996 under the tutelage of a blockbuster roster of teachers from Jack Womack to Ellen Datlow, as well as studying under Samuel R. “Chip” Delany in college, remembers recently deceased literary titan Tanith Lee, the transgressive and neodecadant qualities that drew him so passionately to her writing, her courage portraying gay characters and the impact of her work on his own, his most recent anthology, Skin Deep Magic, from Rebel Satori Press, including specific stories such as writing about Richard Bruce Nugent, a gay figure in the Harlem Renaissance, in “Conjuring Shadows” and “Coalrose” which was inspired by Nina Simone, the influence of Aimé Césaire, surrealism and the Négritude movement in skin-deep-magicFrancophone literature, exploring his fascination with lucid dreaming in his latest story The Nectar of Nightmares forthcoming from Dim Shores, writing in the “Beautiful Mess,” engaging with racist imagery, epithets, stereotypes and ideology in stories such as “Lyes,” why he feels it’s okay to like problematic fiction—including HP Lovecraft—as long as you don’t deny the problem, horror as intrinsic to the experience of African Americans, women and other liminal groups versus being about the fear of the other, Toni Morrison‘s Beloved as a horror novel, the current boom of diverse writers in fantastic literature, the often overlooked gay weird, writing from every perspective, why everybody should read Queers Destroy Horror!, ssmhis next novel currently titled Invocations—a contemporary fantasy about a family of outsider artists, and his current reading recommendations including Tom Cardamone, Chesya Burke, Amanda Downum’s Dreams of Shreds and Tatters, and Tanith Lee’s posthumous collection Dancing Through the Fire, which has a theme of coming to peace with death, and A Different City, published just before her passing which he calls “classic top-notch over-the-top gothic goodness” set in Marseilles—“Flaubert if he wrote dark fiction”!

This archival episode will be available again at This Is Horror soon. In the meantime, subscribe at iTunes  or Blubrry to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

bereft_1_full_nameMore Links:

http://www.lethepressbooks.com/

http://www.tinysatchelpress.com/#!__whats-in-the-satchel

http://www.ferris.edu/jimcrow/

http://weirdfictionreview.com/2013/04/wandering-spirits-traveling-mary-shelleys-frankenstein/

Next week’s guest: Gemma Files, author of The Worm in Every Heart, We Will All Go Down Together, the Hexslinger series, and the forthcoming novel Experimental Film.

H.P. Lovecraft and Racism Panel from Necronomicon Providence| The Outer Dark: Special Presentation — AUGUST 22, 2015

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“H.P. Lovecraft and Racism: Moving Past the Howies.” A Special Presentation of the Panel at NecronomiCon Providence, Sat. Aug. 22, 2015.

Moderator: Niels Hobbs. Panelists: C. Morgan Grefe, Andrew Leman, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, David Nickle, Faye Ringel.

Panel Description: Lovecraft was a racist. Whether you believe that his racism was only privately expressed in letters (and somehow ignore the racist aspects of his stories) and that his views softened later in life, his racism is now an undeniable aspect of his known personality. So how can we respond to this in a productive manner, and create a weird fiction community that is welcoming of diverse voices? Within this discussion, panelists will explore how Lovecraft’s racism shaped his work, and how contemporary fans can still love the craft without necessarily loving the views.

This archival episode will be available again at This Is Horror soon. In the meantime, subscribe at iTunes  or Blubrry to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

More Links:

http://davidnickle.blogspot.com/2014/08/dont-mention-war-some-thoughts-on-hp.html

http://www.silviamoreno-garcia.com/blog/necronomicon/

http://www.rifuture.org/lovecrafts-racism-a-tough-issue-at-necronomicon-providence.html

http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2015/08/hp-lovecraft-125/401471/

http://www.salon.com/2014/09/11/its_ok_to_admit_that_h_p_lovecraft_was_racist/

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/dec/09/move-over-hp-lovecraft-black-fantasy-writers-are-coming-through

Photo credit: Todd Chicoine

 NEXT WEEK’S GUESTS:  s.j. bagley and Simon Strantzas discuss new critical journal Thinking Horror.

Chesya Burke: Strange Crimes and Dangerous Women | The Outer Dark: Episode 8 — AUGUST 17, 2015

 Strange-Case-or-Little-Africa-187x300Chesya Burke delves deeply into the stories from her first collection Let’s Play White and her new novel The Strange Crimes of Little Africa, forthcoming from Rothco Press this fall (a mystery set in the dynamic cultural milieu of Harlem Renaissance which features Zora Neale Hurston as a character), intersectional feminism in the African-American context with strong female protagonists and supernatural powers as a force of empowerment, growing up with ghost stories in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, and reclaiming cultural traditions, open endings and returning characters, why she still loves zombies, reading and enjoying H.P. Lovecraft’s works but not flinching from the critical context of his racism, her doctorate studies in English, diversity and the future of speculative fiction, and her reading recommendations including Kiese Laymon and N.K. Jemisin.

This archival episode will be available again at This Is Horror soon. In the meantime, subscribe at iTunes  or Blubrry to make sure you don’t miss an episode.

NEXT WEEK’S GUEST:  Kate Jonez, author of Ceremony of Flies.

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