ALTA 2009… ’nuff said.

15 11 2009
Pasadena Hilton, ALTA 2009

Vagrants in the Hilton Lobby, courtesy Matt Rowe

Home is the sailor, home from sea
And the hunter home from the hill.





Some Good News and I’m Off to ALTA

12 11 2009

Subtropics 9, the translation issue, will be published in January 2010, featuring fiction by J. M. G. Le Clezio, Marco Denevi, Fumiko Enchi, Gyula Krudy, Ervin Lazar, and Bernard Quiriny; a memoir by Mark Girshin; and poems from the French, Catalan, Vietnamese, Portuguese, Tagalog, Russian, Dutch, Spanish, Latin, Romanian, Ukrainian, and Japanese. Translators include Alison Anderson, John Batki, Martha Collins, Fred Ellison, Michael Emmerich, Edward Gauvin, Jim Kates, Alexis Levitin, Christian Nagle, Andrea Nemeth Newhauser, Idra Novey, Jose Reyes, Marian Schwartz, and Lawrence Venuti.

Matching up names: my translation is of “A Guide to Famous Stabbings” by Bernard Quiriny, a bright star in the current Belgian Francophone firmament. Quiriny’s first book, L’Angoisse de la première phrase [Fear of the First Line], from which this story is taken, was published in 2005 by Phébus, and received the Prix Littéraire de la Vocation, a prize previously won by such notables as Christophe Bataille, Amélie Nothomb, Jean-Philippe Toussaint, Didier Van Cauwelaert, and Shan Sa. His second book of short stories, Contes Carnivores (Le Seuil, 2008), won Belgium’s top literary prize, the Prix Rossel. It was prefaced by Enrique Vila-Matas, whose work is referenced in “Stabbings.” Born in 1978, Quiriny lives in Bourgogne, where he studied with political philosopher Cornélius Castoriadis, who sometimes shows up in his stories. He is a frequent contributor to Chronic’Art, Epok, and Le Magazine Littéraire.





That Crazy Interfictions 2 Evening

11 11 2009

Last Friday night, readings by Jeffrey Ford, K. Tempest Bradford, Carlos Hernandez, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Veronica Schanoes, and Genevieve Valentine, backed up by local musicians Brian Wecht, Jeremy Goddard, John Pinamonti, Nate Landau, and Charlie Shaw, conducted by Brian Francis Slattery. And boy do I mean conducted! The Nerd Rock-to-Cuban soundtrack to Carlos Hernandez’ story was amazing.

Links are to my Youtube uploads; more can be found here and here. Wish I’d had more time on my camera.
The next “Slattery Event” will be in Boston this coming Friday: Read the rest of this entry »





Epiphany Fall 2009 Issue Launch Party This Wednesday

9 11 2009
Editor Jeffrey Gustavson Introduces

Epiphany Reading, 11/7/09

So Saturday I read H.V. Chao’s story “Jewel of the North” in its entirety for Epiphany magazine’s fall issue event, the first of two. The second is this Wednesday, November 11, so please come celebrate with a launch party for Fall 2009’s WHO’S STILL ALIVE . . . / (l)ove = (o)cean from 7-9 at Pianos (158 Ludlow St.). I will be reading from my translation of Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud’s “Talking Ape Clobbered by Clowns.”

This concludeth the flogging.





Final Thoughts, More Personal, on WFC

9 11 2009

In the hope a few poorly chosen words, slightly late, are still better than none ever: Among the highlights of WFC weekend were having my Clarion mates all crammed into my mom’s house, on floor and sofa, in room and hall. Waking every morning to jaw around the breakfast table on three hours’ sleep. We also did some serious hanging out with the awesome Clarion ’08, as well as assorted Westies and past grads, largely thanks to an afternoon Clarion alum party that Leslie Howle threw Friday afternoon. While we went around the crowded room with AA-style introductions, I was mesmerized by the view of dry and distant hills from the 14th floor: a reminder that there was a world outside, beyond the heavy curtains, carpeted corridors, deadly dull brocaded walls of conference suites. A world beyond a swarm of faces—and for a moment the prospect of another handshake felt crippling. Sunshine! Fresh air! Through the tinted window it seemed almost a back projection, or a collective hallucination, as loud an announcement as a long shot of landscape in a sweeping old epic, the green world (though it was mostly brown) they run to at the end of some cut of Blade Runner. Read the rest of this entry »





Post WFC, Part 2

9 11 2009

Author Alan DeNiro, a Michigan Clarion vet I met at WFC, has a few neat roundups of WFC events here. In his Day 2 report, he mentions the Fantasy in Translation panel, where critic and blogger Cheryl Morgan announced the tremendously exciting Science Fiction and Fantasy Translation Awards, for works of foreign-language speculative fiction translated into English.

She gave fervent argument for the award, which is really her brainchild: “In running the Science Fiction Awards Watch web site, I see non-English speaking countries all around the world give awards for translated fiction. Only in English-speaking countries are translations not specifically rewarded. We aim to change that.” Read the rest of this entry »





World Fantasy Con… some overdue wrap-up

9 11 2009

Before any more time goes by—yikes, it’s been a week already!—some afterthoughts on WFC. The blogosphere, ADD as it is, has long ago up and moved on, and everyone else has filed their reports and coverage. So please indulge me three quick posts pertaining thereto. First, huge congrats to all this year’s nominees and winners at World Fantasy Con!

  • Lifetime Achievement: Ellen Asher & Jane Yolen
  • Best Novel (tie): The Shadow Year, Jeffrey Ford (Morrow) & Tender Morsels, Margo Lanagan (Allen & Unwin; Knopf)
  • Best Novella: “If Angels Fight”, Richard Bowes (F&SF 2/08)
  • Best Short Story: “26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss”, Kij Johnson (Asimov’s 7/08)
  • Best Anthology: Paper Cities: An Anthology of Urban Fantasy, Ekaterina Sedia, ed. (Senses Five Press)
  • Best Collection: The Drowned Life, Jeffrey Ford (HarperPerennial)
  • Best Artist: Shaun Tan
  • Special Award – Professional: Kelly Link & Gavin J. Grant (for Small Beer Press and Big Mouth House)
  • Special Award – Non-Professional: Michael Walsh (for Howard Waldrop collections from Old Earth Books)

Another round of applause from this section for my former teacher Jeffrey Ford, and the publishers of my upcoming translation of Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud’s stories, Kelly Link & Gavin J. Grant. And w00t for the Paper Cities upset!





Interfictions 2 Updates

9 11 2009

Thanks to Jeff VanderMeer, Amazon has listed Interfictions 2 among the Top 10 Books of Science Fiction & Fantasy for 2009. (Insert Kermit arm-waving) More details at the IAF site and blog.

LiveJournal user rymenhild attended the Interfictions 2 Borderlands reading in San Francisco last Tuesday, where she heard editor Delia Sherman read from “L’Île Close,” and sent Ellen Kushner this message she kindly passed on to author Lionel Davoust and me: “Hello. This is… the medievalist who came to the Borderlands reading…. I read the rest of ‘L’Ile Close’ on the way home that night—a metatextual post-Sartre Arthurian story! It read as if it were written for me personally!—and totally humiliated myself by cackling all over the subway when I got up to the point where the Grail was singing Monty Python.” Read the rest of this entry »





Two Lines 2009: Wherever I Lie Is Your Bed

9 11 2009

The Latest Two Lines

The latest incarnation of the annual Two Lines anthology from the Center for the Art of Translation is now out, available from Amazon and the Center itself. The cover is a marvel to behold. Inside, the book features the work of such poets and writers as Günter Grass, Adonis, Jose Manuel Prieto, George Szirtes, and Yoko Tawada, and such translators as Breon Mitchell, Esther Allen, Susan Bernofsky, Alison Anderson, and Karen Emmerich. The guest editors are the illustrious Margaret Jull Costa and Marilyn Hacker. It also includes a nifty two-pager by the incredible French comics artist François Ayroles, translated by yours truly. Because Chad Post is Chad Post, he already has a review up at Three Percent.

I would be remiss not adding that this lovely cover, which has caused acquaintances to fondle the book covetously, was the brainchild and handiwork of editor Annie Janusch, who does double world lit duty as the Works-In-Translation editor of The Quarterly Conversation. She’s been my point person at CAT for the last two years, and made the experience of contributing to Two Lines pleasurable and professional. Wouldn’t have happened without her. Three cheers!

This handsome volume fêtes its official launch on the following occasion (wish I could be there):

Monday, November 9: Book Release Party at LIMN Gallery Read the rest of this entry »





Interfictions 2 Tour Schedule Announced: Imminent Events

31 10 2009

Interfictions 2

The lovely book above is now available and there’s an event this Sunday to celebrate, in World Fantasy Con‘s very own San Jose! Smashing French writer Lionel Davoust is translated therein by yours truly, but the true treasure is the talent we get to rub shoulders with: Jeffrey Ford, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Theodora Goss, Alan DeNiro, and Brian Francis Slattery!

Go get Interfictions 2! Published by Small Beer Press and edited by Christopher Barzak and Delia Sherman, the anthology includes contributions from six countries, including the United States, Poland, Norway, Australia, France, and Great Britain. In celebration, we’re throwing a multi-city party of readings, signings, and musical collaborations.

If you live near one of these cities, don’t miss your chance to witness the cutting edge of interstitial art!

SAN JOSE
THIS Sunday, November 1 at 4:00 p.m
Barnes & Noble
3600 Stevens Creek Boulevard

SAN FRANCISCO
Tuesday, November 3 at 7:00 p.m.
Borderlands Books
866 Valencia Street

NEW YORK
Friday, November 6 at 7:00 p.m.
Housing Works Bookstore Cafe
126 Crosby Street

LOS ANGELES
Tuesday, November 10 at 8:00 p.m.
M Bar
1253 Vine (at Fountain)

BOSTON
Friday, November 13 at 7:30 p.m.
The Lily Pad
Inman Square
1353 Cambridge Street