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Even Dragons Dance
The best way to find me these days is at Facebook.  If we're not linked there, please add me (Christopher Kastensmidt).

I just haven't had time for both here and there, and a lot more people I know are there.
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I wish I could catch up, I really do.  There's so much to share about Lynx and everything else going on in my life, but time continues short.

But I now have just ten weeks to write my dissertation, which I have to do between consulting and teaching, not to mention my #1 priority, Lynx, so I'm going to have to stay off the Internet as much as possible.  Fiction writing and related activities also need to go on hold, unfortunately.

But before I go, here are a few happy things to share that have happened over the last month or so.

1) First up, book covers!  Here are the Brazilian covers for Gerard and Oludara adventure #2 ("A Parlous Battle"), and for an invite-only anthology called The Witch Hammer with my story "As They Appear...":


The books were launched simultaneously in São Paulo a few weeks back, so they share the distinction of the first time I've had a story published in another language before it was published in English.

I am very pleased with both stories, they've been getting excellent reviews all around.  They are two of the best I've written, the kind of stories that make me go and trunk all my older work.  I hope to publish both in English next year, but while publishing in Brazil has become much easier (I've turned down three anthology invites recently for lack of time), publishing in the U.S. seems to be getting harder.  Go figure.

2) I've been receiving a lot of honors lately.  The city council of Novo Hamburgo (one of the places I teach) gave me a "vote of congratulations" for winning the Realms of Fantasy Readers' Choice Award.  That's not something you see every day.

And I also recieved a gorgeous trophy for participating in the National Literary Journey, where "Fortuitous Meeting" was named as a "work of distinction in forming new readers".  Beautiful.

Writing hasn't been financially rewarding this year, but it has been just plain old rewarding.

There are some opportunities on the horizon, though.  As soon as I wrap up the dissertation I can focus on those, and see if I can't turn writing into more of a career in 2012.

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Not this:

Nor this:

No, not even this:

It was this:

Connecting with young readers at the Nacional Literary Journey last week.

It made it all worthwhile.

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This is where I live:

Come by and visit sometime!

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I have an important journey coming up.  Three events in two weeks, starting Friday.  Over 15,000 miles of travel.

If you'd like to know more, I wrote up a post on it here:

And my Worldcon schedule is here (and it's BIG):

So I'm going to be busy.  Don't expect to see me around LJ much until September.  If you need me, drop me a private message here and it will find me.

And I hope to see a bunch of you at Worldcon!

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Props to vaughan_stanger  for convincing me to give ljArchive another try.

Whereas yesterday it failed bizarrely every time I ran it, today it is working.  You need at least one good sync for the tool to start working properly, so you may have to try many, many times...

Here's the link:

It's not perfect.  I don't think it downloads images locally (seems to leave them on LJ, even when I export to an HTML file), but it is a well-organizaed backup of all the text.
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I'm trying to do a LiveJournal backup.

I tried two tools already:

1) ljArchive - Doesn't seem to work at all
2) ljBook - This produced a fantasic hyperlinked PDF.  Problem is, it doesn't find a ton of posts, including almost everything from 2009-2010.

Any other recommendations?
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I wanted to put up some posts to LJ recently, but... well, you all know what's going on here.

Is it time to move on?  If so, where is everyone going?
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Big congrats to all the nominees, especially LJ friends rachel_swirsky  , johnjosephadams , matociquala , nojojojo and kijjohnson!  You rock!

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Had a double jaw drop this week, both times in relation to the Jornadinha Nacional de Literatura (National Literary Journey).

First, I found out I'll be speaking to 11,000 adolescents from 10 to 17 years old.  I'll be speaking to groups of 1,100 at a time over two days.
And I'll also be speaking to an auditorium full of "non-participants".  I'm not sure yet what that entails.

Second, I saw the activity book that was put together for the event.  It's here, with suggested activities for my work on pages 17 and 18.  It's in Portuguese, but the suggested activies include watching The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and splitting the students into groups to play an RPG!

My work is also referenced for teachers to open discussion about the different genres of speculative fiction: Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror.
:O :O :O

Wow... just... wow...  This is territory where even my dreams have dared to tread.  A chance to make a difference when it counts.

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A Dance with Dragons just appeared on my Kindle.  Damn.  That's going to be nagging at me for a few months, because I don't have time to read that monster right now.


I am now a Srivener adept.  I took advantage of the Write-a-Thon to get myself a little organized with The Elephant and Macaw Banner stories.  I have to keep track of nine of them just for the first novel.  Characters come in and out of them, and between notes, backups, and revisions (and waiting years between writing them), I just started getting lost.

So I  tested out three writing softwares I've been wanting to try for years: Celtx, Liquid Story Binder and Scrivener.  I went with Scrivener and what a difference!  I've unified all the stories and notes into a single file.  I can access anything I want with a click.

I bow to the many writers who have recommended it over the years.

Now, back to writing!

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Today I sold flash "Geniuses" to Daily Science Fiction!

I referred to this story in a post about a month ago.  Very happy to make this sale.  Persistence pays off, as does actually learning how to write.

This is my second sale to DSF.  Many thanks to Michele and Jonathan!

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Haven´t had much time around here lately.

1) Because of this (for anyone who hasn´t seen it):
Hydra Competition for Brazilian Literature
I´ll also be one of the judges, meaning I´ll have hundreds of stories to read (not the worst problem in the world :).

2) Because I need to get some serious work done on my dissertation.

3) For the Clarion Write-a-Thon.

It´s going to be a busy couple of months, but hopefully very productive ones!

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There's an interview of me up at SFWA.org today which discusses "Fortuitous Meeting", The Elephant and Macaw Banner and living in Brazil, among other things.

HUGE thanks to marshallpayne1  and charlesatan for making it happen!

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Been busy preparing the last classes for the semester and getting my keynote ready.  I'm off to Rio in the morning and will be mostly offline for a few days.

In other news, I signed up for the Clarion West write-a-thon.  My page is here.  I had fun with it. 

That should help me get back into writing mode a bit.

Gotta run, I have classes this afternoon and this evening.  More news next week.

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Douglas Cohen shows me the shiny. :)


Alastair Reynolds interview up at From Bar to Bar.  For those keeping up, my part in the conspiracy is mentioned in passing.


Received my preliminary Worldcon programming.  I'm on five panels, including two that I suggested.  It's going to be a blast!  I'll post that information once it's official.


EDIT: Wrote a poem today and sent out two.  Now I'm up to two stories and two poems submitted.  A far cry from the days of having fifteen stories out, but much better than the total of one I've had out since last year...

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I revised a story today that I wrote in 2005 and trunked in 2008.  At the time of trunking, the story had racked up 20 rejections.  However, half those rejections contained nice comments about the story, and at least three times I came very close to selling it, including a rewrite request I never got around to doing.  I never gave up on the story though, I just needed some time off from it.

So today I dusted it off, gave it a massive revision, and sent it out.  The basic plot is still there, but I improved the telling dramatically.  What a difference three years makes...

Time to do a lot more of that.


In another bit of news, it's now official, I'm an invited guest to the first ever Literary Festival of Paracatu!

Paracutu is a small town in the middle of Brazil and is a national heritage site, so I'm very much looking forward to the visit.  This invite is a huge honor for me.

More on that later.

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This is one of my favorite pictures ever:

Why?  Because it's one of the first ones Lynx ever took.

Here's another one from the same batch:

Sometimes, it's not what's in the picture that's important.

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The readers of Realms of Fantasy have chosen "The Fortuitous Meeting of Gerard van Oost" for the 2010 Readers' Choice Award!

I'm sharing this year's award for "Best Fiction" with Scott Dalrymple's "Queen of the Kangeullas".

Now I have a reason to love RoF and its readers. :)

Many thanks to everyone who voted!

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This site is made of awesome:

The CRPG addict.

The blogger is playing his way through every CRPG ever made.  Wizardry, Phantasie, Ultima, Bard's Tale, Might & Magic... all the way up to the present day.  He plays them, comments on them, beats them, and then ranks them on a spreadsheet.

Right now he's on Pool of Radiance, one of my old favorites.

He also throws in some interesting thought pieces from time to time on the genre:
CRPG Tropes
What were they thinking?
Ultima IV and virtue

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