Scott Nicolay

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Tag: Japan

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

Niels Hobbs: Where the Weird is Going, Where It Has Been | The Outer Dark: Episode 12 — SEPTEMBER 22, 2015

LASC_NCon-small_adThis week The Outer Dark welcomes Niels Hobbs, executive director of the Lovecraft Arts and Sciences Council and prime mover behind the biennial NecronomiCon Providence. Niels discusses why he and others resurrected this convention after a dozen years of dormancy and its emergence as the essential summit for writers, editors, artists and academics in the world of H.P. Lovecraft and weird fiction, the transformative nature of NecronomiCon 2013 as a catalyst in the Weird Renaissance, the exponential growth of contemporary high-quality Weird fiction, the small press explosion and its mutual support network, the importance of pie, the generally good-hearted nature of the weird fiction community, his early love of fiction and the arts, Lovecraft as a gateway drug on the way to the complex, vibrant and international continuum of the Weird, punk rock, marine biology, the unique weirdness of Providence, confronting and moving beyond racism/sexism/homophobia in Lovecraft’s work and some corners of his fandom, the fantastic array of artists embracing the Weird today and the joy of assembling the Ars Necronomica exhibitions of 2013 and 2015, more triumphs and challenges of the 2015 NecronomiCon, and looking ahead to NecronomiCon 2017 (Aug. 17-20, 2017) without abandoning Lovecraft but expanding to a broader, more diverse, global vision of the Weird. Niels also reveals some of the names on his dream guest list for 2017 including Ann and Jeff VanderMeer, Ellen Datlow, Chesya Burke, Craig Laurance Gidney, Jayaprakash Satyamurthy, Usman T. Malik, Junji Ito, and others.

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.

LASC logo - pyramidal

More Links:

http://necronomicon-providence.com/enter/

http://www.providencejournal.com/article/20150816/ENTERTAINMENTLIFE/150819592

https://cthulhuwho1.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/mythoscon-2011-program-booklet-jan-6-9-2011.pdf

http://www.amazon.com/The-Weird-Compendium-Strange-Stories/dp/0765333627

http://www.outsiderart.co.uk/blinko.htm

http://www.worldcon.fi/

Next week’s guest: Nick Gucker, AKA “Nick the Hat,” cover artist and illustrator

s.j. bagley and Simon Strantzas: Thinking Horror in the 21st Century, Before and Beyond| The Outer Dark: Episode 10 — SEPTEMBER 8, 2015

thkhrrrs.j. bagley and Simon Strantzas converse about collaborating on their new Thinking Horror journal premiering in October, why it’s important now to have a journal that focuses on the philosophy and criticism of horror, the theme of the first issue “Horror in the 21st Century,” addressing the problematic nature of how the term “horror” is viewed by mainstream movie/reading audiences versus writers, the curse and boon of the horror boom of the 1980s and 1990s, the transgressive possibilities of horror, an ever-wider, ever-deepening field of diverse writers and content, the importance of recovering older weird writers to seeding the Weird Renaissance and the importance of the Weird in horror now, Weird horror as a mode to reconcile the self with an ever-expanding world and the relationship between contemporary Weird fiction and modernism, Asian and African influences on horror and Weird fiction, understanding the different facets through which specific writers see horror, upcoming issue themes, the importance of affordable reprint editions, the future of horror, their reading recommendations including Steven Millhauser, Kristi DeMeester, Michael Wehunt,Daniel Mills, Helen Marshall, and Jeffrey Thomas, and when and where readers can get copies of Thinking Horror (paperback and eBook).

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:

www.thinkinghorror.net

www.valancourtbooks.com

NEXT WEEK’S GUEST: Daniel Mills, author of The Lord Came at Twilight

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