The owner/operator of the Grand Midway, Blair Murphy, had business that kept him from being on hand for much of this Thursday’s coffeehouse. Accordingly, he asked yours truly to pinch-hit for him. I agreed, of course–I mean, why not? Being paid a bit to attend my favorite place, where I’d be spending the evening regardless! […]Read more "Windber Coffeehouse Nights: September 6, 2018"
The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang (Fantasy Novel, 2018). Like many writers, this first-time fantasy novelist has drawn on elements of a real-life subject she knows about (in this case, Chinese history and mythology) as inspiration for an imaginary world series. There’s nothing wrong with that, yet I must confess to some slight ambivalence in […]Read more "REVIEWED: The Poppy War"
Yes, it was another Thursday night at my weekly hangout: A haunted onetime hotel turned spooky (but very fun) coffeehouse. But first, there was time for another of my favorite activities: DINNER! What used to be Windber’s Coal Heritage Museum (and way before my time, the town’s Post Office) is less than a block from […]Read more "Windber Coffeehouse Nights: 19 July 2018"
This installment of the Grand Midway Hotel’s weekly coffeehouse featured mostly familiar faces, plus one actual newcomer, a couple quirky films on DVDs (both comedies, though otherwise quite unlike one another), one regular’s persistent smartphone frustrations, another visit by two psychic researchers, and yours truly conveying good writing news (polite way of saying bragging) even […]Read more "Windber Coffeehouse Nights: July 12, 2018"
The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden (Historical Fantasy Novel, 2018). This is the second in a series of novels that capably blends Russian folklore/fairy tales and medieval history into spirited adventure fiction in an exotic wilderness. Arden’s first novel introduced readers to Vasya, a young noble woman with the gift of seeing supernatural creatures […]Read more "REVIEWED: The Girl in the Tower"
Year One by Nora Roberts (SF/F Novel, December 2017). Is it the tense times we live in that has so many authors exploring the theme of society collapsing via assorted doomsday scenarios? Of course the post-holocaust world is a long-established theme in science fiction and also crops up in supernatural fantasy from time to time. Here, […]Read more "REVIEWED: Year One"
I’m happy to report that I’ve sold reprint rights for another of my older stories. The story is entitled “Raven’s Last Trick” and no, it’s NOT porn (mind out of the gutter, folks!). It’s a fairy tale-like thing based on Native American (or as the Canadians say First Nations) mythology. It tells of the Haida […]Read more "Mythic Fantasy Story SOLD, Again!"