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Henry Lien: The Elegant Art of the Literary Duel | The Outer Dark: Episode 25 — DECEMBER 30, 2015

TODA25-Henry Lien The Elegant Art of the Literary Duel

There’s no one quite like Henry Lien in spec-lit today. He has generated major buzz with just six unique stories. His first published story ‘Pearl Rehabilitative Colony for Ungrateful Daughters’, which features “an art form that combines figure skating with kung fu”, made the cover of the December 2013 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction (Henry even pitched cover artist Alexandra Manukyan) and went on to be a Nebula Award nominee. His latest, critically acclaimed ‘The Ladies’ Aquatic Gardening Society’ (Asimov’s, June 2015), perhaps his most distinctly Weird tale, is about two Gilded Age grandes dames dueling for Newport high society dominance via their increasingly outrageous and environmentally devastating theme gardens. On this episode of The Outer Dark, Henry pulls back the curtain on his creative process starting with the rigorous questions he asks himself before moving forward with an idea (0:03:00), diving into stories as “thought experiments”, putting pressure on his writing and matching concept with format, the importance of humor in “humanizing” and “bridging centuries and miles”, the potential for “wonder in modest concepts” and exploring them to their logical conclusion and how he pushes outside himself to tell stories from the viewpoint of girls and women. A self-described “one-man movie studio”, he also waxes enthusiastic about the joy he gets from indulging his multimedia muse including the “crazy fun” and “intense satisfaction” of handing a story over to an artist, voicing his characters in audio rendition, and even dabbling in writing music to accompany his stories. The madcap conversa

"Pearl Rehabilitative Colony for Ungrateful Daughters" (Cover story, Asimov's, Dec. 2013). Art by Alexandra Minukyan.

“Pearl Rehabilitative Colony for Ungrateful Daughters” (Cover story, Asimov’s, Dec. 2013). Art by Alexandra Manukyan.

tion touches upon all his stories from the two aforementioned tales (‘Pearl’, 0:14:45) (‘Ladies’, 1:01:30)to the simple, elegant, tragic ‘Supplemental Declaration of Henry Lien’ (Interfictions, Nov. 2015)(0:24:30) and the life-changing experience at its heart that propelled him into writing spec-lit, the poignant dolphin conservation advocacy tale ‘Bilingual’ (F&SF, March 2015) (0:34:55) told unexpectedly all via Twitter, ‘The Shadow You Cast Is Me’ (Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, May 2015) (1:38:30) in which he explores the uncomfortable topic of a dysfunctional marriage, and ‘The Great Leap of Shin’ (Analog, Jan. 2015) (1:50:45). His Clarion West instructors Chuck Palahniuk and George RR Martin receive some heartfelt appreciation, “worlds that can be held in a pocket” are mused upon, and there’s a Karel Čapek interlude (1:17:00), plus ruminations on the rapidly diversifying audience for spec-lit, why Henry is done with short stories for the time-being, his just-completed novel which he says is “the best thing I have written”, why it’s OK to be proud of your stories, why he supports bringing back legal dueling to resolve world conflicts (1:51:30), his own ultimate duels, his ‘Radio SFWA’ recruitment anthem performed at the 2016 Nebula Awards (2:00:00), and his recommended living authors (2:05:20) James Robert Herndon

Bilingual-CarolineSirounian2

“Bilingual” (F&SF, March 2015), art by Caroline Sirounian.

and Lian Hearn.

News From the Weird

(2:13:10) With Arkham Digest columnist and Strange Aeons fiction editor Justin “Steely J” Steele. Reviews of two of the best weird fiction chapbooks of 2015: These Last Embers by Simon Strantzas, from Undertow Publications, and The Visible Filth by Nathan Ballingrud, from This is Horror.All day Levitra is great and works fine. Plus Scott and Justin look ahead to 2016, which promises to be another big year in the Weird including another author reveal from the table of contents of the much anticipated Lost Signals anthology (ed. Max Booth III/Perpetual Motion Machine Press).

This archival episode is available at This Is Horror here.

Additional Links

Caroline Sirounian

Kurt Huggins

‘Swim Wants to Know if it’s as Bad as Swim Thinks’ by Paul Tremblay

Sidecar Preservation Society

TheGreatLeapofShin-KurtHuggins2

“The Great Leap of Shin” (Analog, Jan. 2015). Art by Kurt Huggins.

Show credits

Host/Executive Producer: Scott Nicolay

Co-Host, News From the Weird: Justin Steele

Associate Producer/Show Notes: Anya Martin

Logo Design: Nick “The Hat” Gucker

Music: Michael Griffin

Gemma Files: Every Movie Is a Ghost Story | The Outer Dark: Episode 15 — OCTOBER 13, 2015

Gemma Files goes behind the lens of her new standalone horror novel Experimental Film, its roots in her background as a film critic who has seen more than 5000 movies, the difference between horror in cinema and horror literature, Stephen King, Peter Straub and Clive Barker, the hyper-reality of anything that happens behind the camera, her ongoing fascination with found footage narrative, why inside every movie is a ghost story, the aftertaste of Candyman and swimming deep into Lake Mungo, why she likes people who are monsters, accepting the monster inside herself and writing the monster, how the experience of raising an autistic son and discovering a shared language with him using music and movies has contributed to her own growth and work, why we are attracted to certain narratives and stories, personal narratives and the survival imperative of reframing one’s own narrative versus “collapsing to no one,” her tendency to set stories in war zones and the end of days as not an end but a transformation, moments of transfiguration and decision, crafting language in narrative, rap music, minute details of historical fashion, the unlikely genesis of her Weird western Hexslinger trilogy, opening oneself up to diversity and letting LBGT and culturally diverse characters speak for themselves, why she decided to write deliberatively about women, “Grave Goods,” her story in the upcoming Autumn Cthulhu from Lovecraft eZine about an all-women archaeological dig including a transgender character, how H.P. Lovecraft’s legacy today is to be subverted and how she approached writing for two all-female Lovecraft-themed anthologies, and her current reading recommendations including John Connolly’s short stories, The Book of Lost Things and his Charlie Parker noir novels, which she says are “totally horror” and “make it look effortless,” Adam Nevill, whose most recent book is No One Gets Out Alive and whom she says is ‘the real deal”—”so good and so vicious and so layered and beautifully, beautifully detailed” —and Shirley Jackson Award-winning author Helen Marshall—”My God she can write!”

News From the Weird

Arkham Digest’s Justin Steele joins The Outer Dark as resident reviewer to discuss Gemma Files’ latest novel, Experimental Film.

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Guest Bio:

Former film critic and teacher Gemma Files won the 1999 International Horror Guild short fiction award for her story “The Emperor’s Old Bones,” which appears in her collection The Worm in Every Heart. Both it and her earlier collection, Kissing Carrion, feature stories adapted into episodes of The Hunger, an anthology TV show produced by Ridley and Tony Scott. Her first novel, A Book of Tongues: Volume One of the Hexslinger Series (ChiZine Publications), won a DarkScribe Magazine Black Quill award for “Best Small Press Chill” in both the Editor’s and Readers’ Choice categories. A Rope of Thorns (2011) and A Tree of Bones (2012) complete the trilogy. She is also the author of We Will All Go Down Together: Stories of the Five-Family Coven. Her latest novel, Experimental Film, was released in November 2015 and .

Buy Tramadol is an analgesic that belongs to the list of potent narcotic drugs.

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://www.innsmouthfreepress.com/blog/books/she-walks-in-shadows/

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/dreams-from-the-witch-house-women-of-lovecraft#/

Next week’s guest: Dwayne Olson of Fedogan & Bremer Press discusses the authoritative new two-CD audio release of H.P. Lovecraft‘s sonnet cycle Fungi From Yuggoth.

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