The penultimate letter in the heading is an 'F', by the way. The thing is, reading SFX magazine is better than... the word your mind just might have formed. Well, OK... Maybe it's not better, but it's close. There's movie news, book reviews, interviews with yer favourite actors and actresses, and... wait a minute... There's an interview with me!
It's in the issue dated March 2005. Look for the most gorgeous photo in the mag, and when you've finished staring at the lady from Stargate: Atlantis, mine's the next interview along from hers. (Mind you, the first time they reviewed one of my books, the review appeared inside a cover with Claudia Christian wearing a black leather jumpsuit.) By this time, you should be thankful you're reading a serious literary blog...
Reviews of Resolution are surpassing even the nice things people said about previous books. Thanks, everyone. If you haven't read it... there are some free copies of Resolution up for grabs! SFX are running a competition right here:
Um, what else is new?
If you're in the US or Canada, then major news... The American edition of Paradox appears in March. It looks gorgeous. Those nice folks at Pyr (a major new science fiction imprint) have produced a great-looking book. Many, many thanks to everyone concerned, most especially to Lou Anders, editorial director.
Diary notes from February... Chris and Penny Hill spent a weekend here at the Labyrinth. We made an excursion to Ashdown Forest and played Pooh Sticks at the original Pooh Bridge. Chris deployed a Pooh Log, rather like bringing a grenade launcher to Wimbledon, but failed in his dastardly plans to conquer.
And I had my first training session with Sensei Peter Manning, 5th dan, of the TSKA. Good hard shotokan. Excellent. Osu!
Oh, I bought Tokaido gis from a fine martial arts shop called Meijin, who live online at A gi (pronounced with a hard 'g', rhymes with McGee) is what you wear in traditional Japanese martial arts: white pyjamas, in other words. Tokaido are a renowned brand from a Japanese firm, and Meijin import the gis to Britain. I went to the shop in person to make sure I was getting the right size... Perhaps I was a tiny bit optimistic in
thinking I'd get away with a size 3.5 (three and a half). My new size 5 gis fit perfectly. The first one got christened in the appropriate fashion on the day that I bought it: drenched in blood after a little mishap in the dojo. The blood washed out, thanks. (Two cold wash cycles.)
In the rest of the universe, though not far from the homeworld, you may have noticed reports of atmospheric methane above a possible ice ocean on Mars. Only a suggestion of life... see:
http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn7059 Meanwhile, in a galaxy far, far, away that nobody can see, there might be an awful lot of exotic dark matter spinning around: I mean the dark galaxy known as VIRGOHI21; see: http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn7056
While I'm offering links, I've just found a site with some Dave Lowry articles, like this one:
http://www.furyu.com/archives/issue6/sensei.html I've read Mr Lowry's essays on traditional martial arts and Japanese culture for, well, a couple of decades now, at least. His first book was called Autumn Lightning; my first published short story was called Spring Rain. No coincidence. (Mr Lowry writes a column for Black Belt magazine in the US.) As for the subject of that particular essay, I've trained with some marvellous martial arts teachers over the years; and the late Enoeda Sensei, 9th dan, was the greatest: a true sensei.
So, it's March. How are the New Year's, um, Resolutions doing? Keep focused, Pilots. Respect from the Labyrinth.