Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Quick Updates

I'm finding sitting at the computer very uncomfortable these days. It's so easy to get sucked in though! :-)

Today one of my Science Fiction poetry readings has aired on StarShipSofa. It's "Clone Assassin" by Lyn C. A. Gardner.

StarShipSofa Stories Vol. 1 will be released in Hardcover! You can acquire your very own copy in the following formats: paperback, deluxe trade paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, and FREE ebook. Just follow the link.

Tomorrow, 1 October, is Support Our 'Zines Day an event masterminded by Damien Walter, a SF writer for the Guardian Blog! If you are a reader of or listener to Science Fiction and Fantasy literature, show your support of the industry by subscribing to a genre magazine (in print or digital) and/or donate to any number of podcasts, websites or authors dedicated SFF.

Still no little Dante, except in my womb... Small signs that his birth is getting nearer though. Any day now, sweetie!


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Home Stretch

Long time no see! Yes, I apologize for going radio silent just as I've entered the Home Stretch of pregnancy. No, Dante hasn't been born yet. He's much too comfortable in there! My Mac Mini decided it had had enough (force feeding, I guess) and refused to start up. I took it to the Apple Hospital and they got it to work again. Unfortunately, there are random bits of software which are missing, so random programs don't work properly. I'm clueless about these things, so I think it'll probably be about 18 years before I stop getting random error messages. My friend, Meredith, formerly of the CtK choir in Frankfurt suggested a Big Mac might help. Maybe it's worth a try? ANYWAY...

I have a couple of things to report on:

The Final Wedding Performance

My friends Isabel and Jens asked me to sing for their wedding on 5 September. They chose Laudate Dominum from Mozart's Vespers. We had agreed that if I really wasn't up to it, I could cancel. I felt fine, and my voice was fine, but breath management was weird. I was concerned, because I needed more oxygen than I needed air to sing this piece and my body would get all stressed out by the end of it. Luckily the church was big and the balance with the organ was such that I could sing louder. Strangely, that seemed to help. I "wasted" the air I needed for oxygen's sake and the whole process was more efficient. There wasn't quite the dynamic variation that Mozart suggests, but you know what? I sang well, the bridal couple and several guests were moved, and that's what counts, no?

StarShipSofa Stories Volume 1

The first official Anthology of StarShipSofa's Aural Delights Audio Magazine is available for purchase at Lulu, a print on demand publishing house. You can also download a free ebook version of this fantastic collection of stories. Have a look at the book, which is styled after those wonderfully campy 50's pulp Science Fiction paperbacks, complete with advertisements from 50's magazines interspersed between the stories and original artwork for select stories. Click here. From there you can decide whether you'd like to purchase the book from Lulu or download. In any case, you can also donate to the StarShipSofa. As I've mentioned before, I've narrated countless stories and poetry for the SSS and Tony Smith has become a friend. Three of the stories I narrated for the podcast are appearing in the Anthology. If you listened and liked those stories or narrations you might like to have them in print and you can help out by purchasing the book. All proceeds will go toward production costs of the podcast.


Officially the due date is 13 October. My doctor has gone back and forth a couple of times whether it should be the 6th or the 13th. She's now convinced it should be earlier than the 13th anyway. She declared that from 22 September she'd no longer consider it a premature birth and Dante is welcome to make his appearance. Being pregnant is definitely getting tedious and I'm so curious to meet my little boy. I've been remarkably free of problems worse than elephant feet and cankles due to water retention. I've started with acupuncture to ease the birth and next week the doc will set some needles to help with the swollen legs and feet. I wouldn't have thought, but these needles are much more uncomfortable than the ones they stick in your face for hayfever! I'm trying to rest a lot, and not over-do it. Not sleeping too well these days. Tomorrow we'll have another consultation and ultrasound at the hospital and perhaps set a last date when they'll induce if he's gotten too comfortable in there. Magnus and I will have birthing class on Saturday. Next week some friends have organized a baby shower for me. I think we are pretty much organized and anything we don't have yet won't be tragic.

That's it for now. I'm planning on reviewing a wonderful Dance production I went to recently, but I'll do that in a separate post.


Sunday, September 13, 2009

StarShipSofa Stories Vol. 1

If you are reading this blog, you must know that I have a not-so-secret love of Speculative Fiction. I even narrate Science Fiction and Fantasy stories for podcasts, most notably StarShipSofa and Podcastle. If you don't care about Science Fiction or any of that you can skip this post. :-)

StarShipSofa is where I got my start narrating and is a podcast I listen to religiously. It's a place to hear fantastic short fiction from the genre as well as Science Fact, History of the Genre segments, poetry, Film, book and graphic novel reviews, and much more. Tony C. Smith has been producing the StarShipSofa Aural Delights show for nearly 100 episodes now. And to celebrate he's putting out a print collection of a selection of stories which have aired on the show. I had the honor of narrating 3 of the selected stories. Here's what Tony says about the project:

"StarShipSofa Stories Volume 1 is only a few days away from going on sale. Here’s a sneak preview of the cover art, designed by Skeet.

"Skeet’s brief was to create a picture that would pay homage to the 50s SF pulp magazines. I think he’s produced an amazing piece of work.

"Get ready for the 16th September when the book will be available to buy in print form. There will also be a new website and free eBook released on that day.

"I hope you think it captures the style and feel of the SF Golden Years?"

I'll post again when it's actually available and I hope you will consider purchasing a copy. All monies go toward supporting Tony's efforts in producing the StarShipSofa.