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Ted Chiang

I sent my review of The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate by Ted Chiang off to IROSF just now. Crossing my fingers that they like what I've got to say. It was nice to get back to writing reviews again after 2-plus years.

And with that out of the way, I'm going to knock out the last pages on Fallen, print out a hard copy to read and try to get it out to an agent by month's end. Only trick to the latter is finding an agent willing to look at something that's a mixture of mainstream and horror that tackles the Un-Dead from a new angle.



( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 1st, 2007 09:51 am (UTC)
Judging by many of the successful books of recent years (The Handmaid's Tale; The Olive Eaters; Cloud Atlas; The Children of Men; etc...) you should just say it's mainstream and feign surprise, if not total indignation, if it is suggested there is the slightest hint of genre content in the story.
May. 1st, 2007 03:10 pm (UTC)
Mine's probably more overt than those. More King than Oates, but hopefully different enough that it stands on its own. It's certainly more overt than The Historian.
May. 1st, 2007 05:22 pm (UTC)
Whatever approach you take I wish you all the very best and look forward to hearing when it is launched, and, of course, to buying a copy and reading it. Isn't the last bit what makes it all worthwhile.
May. 1st, 2007 06:58 pm (UTC)

It's always a good thing when you enjoy what you do. Was at the dentist this morning and he said writing must be cathartic, since I can do it without a guarantee of publication. Which is true.

It bodes well for me if I'm fortunate enough to get the chance to do this for money. I'll enjoy it, even though it will still qualify as work, and is work. :-)
May. 1st, 2007 10:03 am (UTC)
BTW I'm looking forward to seeing what you thought of Chiang's work. Would you recommend The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate?

I reviewed a collection of his stories about a year ago for Albedo1 and was ambivalent about many of them. I thought his ideas were great and one or two of the stories were very interesting.

May. 1st, 2007 03:16 pm (UTC)
You're right about that collection. There were 2-3 standouts for me -- such as "Tower of Babylon" and "Hell Is the Absence of God" -- and it was small enough so those could carry the others. As for this latest ... I'll say that I liked it, and if you're a Chiang fan it's probably worth the $20+ price, especially because Subterranean Press puts out beautiful books.
May. 2nd, 2007 09:20 am (UTC)
"Hell Is the Absence of God" was my favourite and I liked "Tower of Babylon". "Division by Zero" struck my fancy as my daughter was studying Maths at college and I was joking her that she would discover something that would undermine her whole raison d'etre.

I also liked the social commentry of "Seventy-Two Letter". This was a case of liking the idea, but not being totally impressed with the characterisation, etc...
May. 2nd, 2007 12:19 pm (UTC)
Yeah, 72 was a tough one. It's not that you need sympathetic characters as much as the ability to help readers identify with the character.
May. 15th, 2007 03:07 am (UTC)

Did you send those reviews to our regular submissions address? I'm concerned because I haven't seen these reviews come through, and we made some recent changes to the submission queue tech. I'm hoping we're not dropping reviews!!! Please write me at bluejack-at-irosf-dot-com whilst I check our spam filters & other possible sources of problems.

May. 15th, 2007 03:46 am (UTC)

We found it.

May. 15th, 2007 04:33 pm (UTC)
Just got your messages. Sorry for the delay in reply. Off sick at home today.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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