Mission: Colonial Venture 2 (CV2-2131-US/EU/RU)
Vessel: IJCC-CDC-3 Galileo
Crew Population: 241 Total / 109 M / 132 F
Chief Officer: Captain Nikola Drake
Nominal Designation: Rhea
Distance from Earth: 12.4ly (1.17313057828*10^14km)
Departure Date: April 2, 2131
Estimated Arrival: June, 2193
Subjective Duration: Approximately 60 years
Post-stasis Briefing: Hello. Welcome back to the waking world. The International Joint Colonial Commission wishes to thank you once more for your service, and the decision to accompany the Galileo and the rest of its crew on this mission. This is the first of your briefings following the extended stasis of your journey. Amazing how quickly sixty years can pass isn’t it? What follows is a basic overview of our data on your soon to be new home. Once you’ve completed your review of this basic data please take some time to reacquaint yourself with your fellow crew members, and in a short time you will be receiving an in-depth report of the data relevant to your areas of expertise. Once again, the IJCC thanks you for your bold spirit, welcome to Rhea! (more…)
So you all know how much I love sharing Kickstarters I think you should a least take a look at. Well here’s another. One a little more personal to me. Fantasy Scroll Magazine is a great little zine trying to get off the ground now. They have a good aesthetic sense, and a bold plan to provide quality speculative fiction on all electronic platforms. Something that a lot of digital venues seem to ignore, instead choosing a safe niche.
Now, in addition to thinking this is a good concept, and a zine I definitely plan to keep an eye on, I do have a bit of a stake in it getting funded. Not much of one yet, as my story Hack Job is only short listed, not officially selected; but just a bit of one. So, what do you say? Help an awesome project get Kickstarted, and maybe help me out a little as well. It’ll be fun. I promise.
Here’s the link to their site: http://www.fantasyscrollmag.com/
And here’s the Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/iulianionescu/fantasy-scroll-magazine-fantasy-sci-fi-and-horror
Published my first ebook to Amazon’s Kindle store. It’s a short anthology of a few poems and a few stories. It’s free until midnight tonight, so go check it out! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00J5UOMI2
I am the Wizard
My wife has settled into sleep, and I am left alone with my work. The blank space on the screen challenges me by its very existence. Its presence taunting me with potential. And I stare back, mind as blank as the space itself. The whiskey on the shelf nearby calls out to me in the voices of Hemingway, Fitzgerald and Poe, but I ignore it. For while the lubrication it provides may let words flow more freely to the page, it may also send them sliding and tumbling, obscuring their meaning in a cascade of typos and syntactic missteps. If writing is to be a labor of love, then let it be a labor; the birthing pains and messy afterbirth a testament to its worth.
And while I sit and ponder this labor I have undertaken, I cannot help but to dwell on the difference I feel in knowing this is not a work of fiction. Why should this be, I wonder, for every work of fiction comes forth bearing a fragment of the writer’s soul. What matter then if I try to tell my truth and end up telling a story, rather than trying to tell a story and ending up telling my truth? Yet I know this to be the crux of my difficulty.
Ever have I tried to obscure my truths by couching them in verse and imaginings. I believe that in large part this was the work of a shy boy doing his best impression of the Wizard of Oz: “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.” And now I have chosen to boldly draw back the curtain and exclaim, “I am the Wizard, and I need the curtain no longer!” Little wonder then if I fear that even Toto should be unimpressed.
That is the joy and the trial of non-fiction. To stand before the desperate wanders without pomp or circumstance, with no smoke or mirrors or special effects, and still have them believe that you are in fact the great and powerful Wizard, and not some schlub in a fancy suit. And so it is that with a mixture of determination and trepidation that I begin to type, explicit in my purpose to speak of who I am and whence I’ve come; trusting in myself, and in you, to believe.
I am pleased to announce that the Fall 2011 edition of Salt Lake Community College’s literary magazine Folio was a rousing success. The launch party was last night, and was very fun, lots of good readings and art. I appear to have gotten over my fear of reading to large groups, as I didn’t stutter at all this year. It’s a great edition, so click on the cover picture below to check it out. Link goes to the web edition, which also has a PDF file of the print edition.
A lovely prompt/exercise which I quite enjoyed and felt deserved to be shared.
I’ve been meaning to send this to someone and realized after they commented on a post that this might be the easier way to get it to them. I wrote this last year for a creative writing class, and promptly cried when I finished it. I miss him so much. I guess today is my day for memorial posts… Oh well, such is life.
The Way I Remember
I remember the cab of the truck, always smelled of gasoline. It was an old truck. It sputtered occasionally, was sorely dented, and painted a mismatched patchwork of blue and gray, but there was nothing wrong with it, nothing to account for the smell. It served us well, those early mornings on the dirt roads of rural Wyoming. Most days I sat in the middle of the bench seat, between him and Uncle Burt, or good old Jimmy, but not this particular day. It was dark, the faint light of predawn glowing red on the horizon, and though I usually slept late, today I was happy to up before the sun. Today Grandpa was taking me fishing.
I can’t say for sure how old I was, more than five, less than ten, and I can’t say how much of this memory is truly real, but only that I remember it. My Grandpa Ray (just Grandpa to me) was a solid man, who looked old but laughed young. Though he’d lived in the city for more years than I could imagine at the time, his clothes gave way his roots.
He wore faded denim overalls, the blue still dark in the creases of the fabric, but elsewhere near to white; its tarnished brass buttons bespoke an age greater than my own. His red and blue plaid shirt was thick, not flannel, but warm enough for a late summer dawn in the mountains. His cowboy boots were good strong leather, dark shining brown when polished, but today they were scuffed and scratched, caked in dried mud and grass. The baseball cap that concealed his bald dome was navy blue, and stitched in gold upon it was the image of a warship, U.S.S Craven it read. The hat, I later learned, was the memento of a reunion for the ship’s crew, decades after World War II had brought them together to ply the waters of the Pacific. The clothes changed many times on those trips, but I cannot remember one without that hat or his boots.
Seated next to me was the tackle box, stocked well enough to give any fisherman pride. A lure for every situation: plain silver spinners in three sizes, brown and green and gold as well; flies that bristled black and umber, some tied with feathers from a bird I imagined to be most exotic. Less exciting, but equally (if not more) important, were lead sinkers: 2 weights of clamp-ons plus the big cylindrical ones; plastic bobbers in red and white; barbed hooks and clips to attach them; and baits of strange color: from the neon green sticky stuff we never used, to the bloody red of salmon eggs (which we did). Next to the box also sat a tin, filled with soft, rich smelling soil brought from his garden at home, squirming thick with hand dug nightcrawlers, caught special for this trip.
In his pockets he carried three knives: the wickedly sharp folding Buck knife he used to clean the fish, its dark wooden handle polished by his hand; the thick, red Swiss Army knife he used to cut the line or whittle back at camp or perform any of a hundred little tasks which might arise; and a smaller Swiss Army that was to become mine that day.
And finally there lay in the truck bed our most important tools: the poles. I remember mine but dimly, a cheap affair with plastic casing the reel, and a button to release the line, but his entranced me. Twice the length of mine it seemed as though it could bend in half without the least worry. The reel unspooled when he cast with the ease I imagine in a spider descending on a thread. And when he reeled in a fish the golden arc which pulled the string spun with a speed and ferocity that indicated perfection in my mind. I dreamt of the day when I could graduate from my ugly childish reel to one as graceful as his.
We rode along the bumpy road to the river quietly, I still waking and he enjoying the sounds of morning. We rode far into the forest, till the road became but a set of tire-tracks burrowing through the tall grass. When at last we reached the fishing hole, a secret one known only to our family, he assured me, we climbed from the cab to stand in dim light on the river bank. That was the day I cleaned my first fish, with the new knife, all my own. I laughed at his jokes, and the way he would pop out his dentures for my amusement, and discovered that bugs could leave their skins hanging on trees. And that is how I best remember him, who meant the most to me, before the cancer and the hospitals and the tears.
This was my final project for a creative writing class last year. It was inspired by some examples of New Media work that our teacher showed us, such as Hotel Rot (though obviously in a very different vein). I loved the idea of giving a piece more life of its own, without altering the fundamental form of written poetry. I wanted to use visual and auditory elements to enhance the poetry, without distracting from it.