SFF Portal Reviews Sybil’s Garage No. 7

SFF Portal has posted a very thorough review of Sybil’s Garage No. 7.  Alison Sinclair says, “Every story had something for me to like: vivid description, playful language, a character to root for, mystery, poignancy, tragedy, an intellectual puzzle, a sting in the tail.”

You can read the full review here.

And you can get a copy of Sybil’s Garage here.

Been a While

I got back from Columbus, Ohio on Sunday and had a great time hanging out with everyone at WFC.  I watched several of my friends give excellent readings, witnessed one of them get his first agent, spoke with super-smart, super-interesting people, and had the best ice cream in the world.  My only regret is not having more time to spend with the people I most love being around.  But that’s why they have a World Fantasy Convention every year, isn’t it?

I’ve put the semi-finishing touches on Catherynne M. Valente’s “Prester John Online” website.  There she’ll be promoting her new and fabulous book The Habitation of the Blessed, and she hopes it will become the go-to place for all things Prester John.  I particularly love the artwork by Lisa Grabenstetter.

In publishing news, Sybil’s Garage and Paper Cities are now available at the Barnes & Noble e-bookstore for downloads as DRM-free ePubs.

At WFC, got to hang out with the awesomely cool Scott H. Andrews of Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and he informed me my story “The Suffering Gallery” will be online December 2nd.  This is my SFWA qualifying sale and I’m both excited and nervous to hear people’s reactions to the story.

And writing-wise, I’ve been working on a short story for a YA post-apocalyptic anthology, which I hope to finish in the next week or so.  It’s dark, and I’m kind of reluctant about scaring kids, but I believe the theme is a positive one.  Then it’s back to the novel, which is progressing well, if a bit slower than I anticipated.

I had been feeling a bit melancholy as of late, but the convention was the perfect thing for my spirits.  Surrounded by so many smart, talented people, doing what they love, writing things that I love, what’s not to be happy about that?

Reviews of Sybil’s Garage and Steam-Powered, Lesbian Steampunk Stories.

Sybil’s Garage was reviewed by Tangent Online and mentioned in Locus Magazine.

Rich Horton of Locus says, “The always interesting ‘zine Sybil’s Garage is back with a thicker than usual issue (partly because of a format change).  As ever, it provides a stimulating mix of SF, fantasy, poetry, and slipstream.  This time around my favorite is “The Poincare Sutra” by Anil Menon, a perkily told but rather dark story of a 16-year-old Coptic girl in Israel, who falls in love with a Jewish boy while her father’s past pushes him in a different direction.”

And Jo-Anne Odell of Tangent Online says, “There are some excellent stories contained in this volume.”

And on a personal note, Friends of Wild Iris reviews Steam-Powered: Lesbian Steampunk Stories. Though they don’t mention my story in particular, they say, “Before I started reading, I’d heard of only a handful of the authors – mainly through knowing people who read their blogs. After reading this anthology, I think I’m going to track down as much of their work as possible and read it. And how much more of a recommendation can I give?

Functional Nerds Podcast

Kate Baker and I are interviewed over at the Functional Nerds Podcast, hosted by Patrick Hester and John Anealio.  We talk about Sybil’s Garage, Clarkesworld Magazine & podcast, being an IT professional, Altered Fluid, Craigslist, Small Beer Press, writing groups, Sybil’s Cave, anthologies, the slush pile, Hal Duncan, the Snoopy dance, conventions & convention parties, Unicorn Pegasus Kitten, Wil Wheaton, John Scalzi & the Lupus Alliance of America.

You can listen to the podcast here.

The Creation of the Cover for Sybil’s Garage No. 7

The creation of the cover for Sybil’s Garage is always one of the most difficult parts in creating the magazine.  Since the second issue, every cover has been unique.  I originally toyed with the idea of creating a photo collage in Photoshop — a kind of nigh-tech Steampunk fusion of machinery, ductwork, wiring, etc.  And when it came time to produce the latest issue I decided I’d apply this idea to the cover.  I had no idea if it was going to work at all, and my co-editors can tell you how much I stressed about it.

I started with photos of Greenpoint, Brooklyn and its industrial landscapes, like these below:

For the backdrop, I used the Tyrell Corporation building from Blade Runner, and and old rusted out metal cargo ship that was docked in Montreal, like so:

…and then over several laborious days I digitally cut up and stitched back together the many images to form the machine-dense collage you see here (click for high res):

Sybil's Garage No. 7 Cover - No Text

It was a lot of work, but nothing worth doing is ever easy.  I think the result was a resounding success, but I’ll let you be the judge of that.

For the more visually (and musically) inclined, I’ve created a short film about the adventure here:

Sybil’s Garage No. 7 at Amazon: http://amzn.to/acB5BI
Get it at Senses Five Press: http://bit.ly/dv8sis