JOHN MEANEY

17.7.05


THE GATHERING OF THE CLANS
The countdown is on. The world science fiction convention will, er, convene in Glasgow, very soon now. August 4th, I think... the details are on http://www.interaction.worldcon.org.uk/
I'll be there, on at least half a dozen panels with fine writers, some of whom I know well enough to torment in public. If you like my books and aren't too shy, please come and say hello at one of those panels. (If you hate my books, please don't tell me.)

Speaking of books I like, the latest book I've read is Christine, by some guy called Stephen King... All right, just a little bit behind the times there. I'm not really into horror fiction, or didn't used to be. (I've just outlined a possible future book called Undead Bones, among the next four projects I've got planned... so my viewpoint may have shifted.) I'm going to tell you right now, if you have any literary ambitions whatsoever, regardless of genre, go out and buy Mr King's book entitled On Writing. Just do it.
If you don't have any ambitions to write, then congratulate yourself on being born sane, and thank your parents for raising you in a loving and stable atmosphere. (Oops. That sounds like I've just insulted my family. Sorry, Mum. Didn't mean it...)

The novel I read before that was Killing Time, the fourth thriller (not SF) by Barry Eisler. Wonderful book. I'm a big fan of Mr Eisler. You could probably guess the name of his website:
http://www.barryeisler.com/
In fact, he lives in San Francisco, home of the marvellous bookstore, Borderlands Books. The Borderlands gang will be in Glasgow, and with luck I'll be signing at their den. Check them out at
http://www.borderlands-books.com/

Their most famous staff member won't be in Glasgow: that's Ripley the cat, who presumably can't leave the store in the hands of bipeds. Oh, that's right... One of the panels I'm on is about cats in science fiction. Actually, it's called, What The F*** Is It About Cats, Anyway? Don't blame me for the title.

There is a definite relationship between writing in general and SF in particular and our feline familiars. Hemingway had a whole community of cats to help him write his short sentences. (It was Maggie Furey who let the feline out of the sack and told the world that it's really the cats who write the books.)

I don't know yet if there'll be pictures as well as words on the panel. The picture shown here is of our beloved Bonbon and Nutmeg.

Take care, Pilots. All hail from the Labyrinth.

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