My Wiscon schedule

Convention website here.

Genre Blending (scheduled) participant Fri, 9:00–10:15 pm University B
Moderator: Rebecca Holden. Email fellow participants Rebecca Holden, Alex Jennings, Justine Larbalestier, Loren Rhoads, Kristine Smith, Brooke Wonders 

Whether it’s a steampunk fairytale or an end of the world love story between science and magic or a Hong Kong-style revenge space opera, stories are spilling over the edges of genre. When is it done well? What is left to explore?
David Bowie’s Influence On Science Fiction (scheduled) participant Sat, 2:30–3:45 pm University C
Moderator: Gwynne Garfinkle. Email fellow participants Gwynne Garfinkle, Kristine Smith, Scott Westerfeld 

In her obituary on for trailblazing musician David Bowie, Charlie Jane Anders writes that Bowie “had an incalculable impact on pop culture throughout his shape-shifting career. But perhaps more than any other musician, he also had a tremendous impact on science fiction. He changed the way we thought about the alien, the uncanny, and the familiar.” This panel will explore the way Bowie’s music, films, and shifting persona shaped and inspired speculative writing and pop culture.
Analog and Digital Writing Tools (scheduled) participant Sun, 8:30–9:45 am Conference 1
Moderator: K. Tempest Bradford. Email fellow participants K. Tempest Bradford, Dylan Moonfire, Kristine Smith 

Writers, bring your favorite writing tools—laptop, tablet, quill, or steam-fueled ideatron—and share the pros and cons of your favored method of writing with others! We’ll talk software, hardware, analogware, old-fashioned methods as well as new. If you’re willing to share your beloved your writing gear, others may be eager to give them a try.
The SignOut (scheduled) participant Mon, 11:30 am–12:45 pm Capitol/Wisconsin
Come and sign your works, come and get things signed, come and hang out and wind down before you leave.

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A Cover Reveal!

The new Contact Imminent cover, designed by Dave Smeds:

Contact Imminent cover for Nook


Like the old cover, it’s a tad more optimistic in mood. In the old cover, Jani is standing before a ship’s porthole looking out at the stars. In this image, she’s looking out over a world, over arriving ships. Like a guardian.

The ebook goes on sale May 27th. There will be a POD edition, available in early June.

Mirrored from .


Safari issues

Just a short update to say that since the last WordPress update, the website is not presenting properly in Safari–the newsletter signup box and some of the social media links are missing. All is well in Chrome, Firefox, and iOS 9. whatever, so if you came here to sign up for the newsletter, one of those browsers will work.

Or, you can email me at, and I can add you.

We’re trying to fix it. If we can’t, we’ll have to change to a new theme.

Mirrored from Taking notes along the way.


A jam day

Blueberry Earl Grey, to be exact.

the finished product
the finished product


Used this recipe. Wondered why I couldn’t use fresh-squeezed lemon juice, so googled. The issue is apparently the need for sufficient acidification. But according to this article, lemons that one finds in a typical US grocery store are sufficiently acidic for use in all canning EXCEPT FOR MEYER LEMONS, WHICH ARE NOT. So, I guess I could have used fresh lemon juice. Since I wasn’t planning on giving any of the jam away, I would be the only person at risk of nastiness. Given that jam doesn’t last long around me, it probably doesn’t matter what I use.

Mistakes were made. I have never used pectin as a setting agent in jam before, so I simply noted Sure-Jell on my grocery list. Went to the store yesterday, and found that there were three different types: regular, less-or-no sugar added recipes, and All Natural. Of course, I picked the All Natural, which proved to be the wrong type; I should’ve bought the less/no sugar added. But I had already put the berries on the stove to cook, so I figured Hell with it and went ahead.

Oh, I also found that I had bought decaf Earl Grey instead of regular.

BE THAT AS IT MAY, I made the jam. I jarred the jam. See above photo. It’s in the fridge now, still slightly warm. However, it does appear to be setting. It may remain a little runnier than desirable–I’ll know more in 12-24 hours–but I shall endeavor to cope. It does taste good–nice berriness with strong hints of Earl Greyness. I think it’s a keeper recipe. I usually eat jam on toast, but I bet this stuff would rock on pancakes.

In other news, still dealing with tailing ends of Cold From Hell + Las Vegas Relapse. Got a tentative schedule for Wiscon, which looks like it will be fun–will post when it’s finalized. Wishing the weather here in far NE Illinois would warm up.

Oh, and the other day, this happened over on the Twitter:



So yesterday, I mailed off a book.

Mirrored from Taking notes along the way.


Gideon/Jericho dreamcast and other things

I had a chance to consider my dream casting for the Gideon miniseries over at MY BOOK, THE MOVIE:

Lauren Reardon—a 30-something Sandra Bullock. Lauren is an outdoorsy woman who enjoys kayaking, backwoods camping, rock climbing. Girl-next-door attractive, and very down-to-earth. Bullock appeals to me in those respects. She’s always struck me as someone you could run into at the local drugstore or mini-mart and have a friendly, funny no-drama conversation with. But there’s a toughness there, and a sense that something happened to her that she simply does not discuss with anyone.

Follow the link for more.

There’s also a link to the COFFEE WITH A CANINE post from back in November.

This weekend, the BRAIN TO BOOKS CYBER CONVENTION is going on over at Goodreads. I have a booth–stop by and post a comment.


Mirrored from Taking notes along the way.


Busy April

RT Convention prep is ongoing. I’ve had Alex Gordon purse mirrors made. Today, I bought little black bags and tags, eye and sugar skull stickers, little bits of eerie to use as badge decorations. Also, business cards. There will also be candy, but I’m going to get it in Las Vegas.

I’m also editing Contact Imminent in preparation for its reissue next month. I needed to reread it so that I could write the cover copy, and oh dear what was I thinking when I tossed in all those exclamation! points! A bunch of those got deleted.Also, em-dashes. They have their place, and I loves them to bits. But there are limits.

As for today, so many links!!!!!**

Incident on a Small Colony, the one and only Jani Kilian novella, appears this month in Lightspeed Magazine’s ebook issue. Yes, I know it’s available on the website, but if you buy the issue, you also get my Spotlight interview in which I discuss how I came up with the tech and why I took the directions I did with Jani’s character and other aspects of the story. Plus, there’s a lot of other great fiction and reviews. Definitely worth $3.99US.

As for Alex Gordon, she’s interviewed in this month’s issue of THE BIG THRILL. I discuss the development of Lauren Reardon, the different worlds of GIDEON and JERICHO, and how I got started on this writing thing in the first place.

Also, Marie Brennan is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the release of her first novel and the upcoming release of her new one, IN THE LABYRINTH OF DRAKES, by hosting other writers on her site and asking us questions over the next five days. Today’s question is, What is the earliest story you ever recall writing? I am in awe of the memories of my fellow authors.

**I had to do something with those deleted !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mirrored from Taking notes along the way.


Checking in…

I’m in the midst of a slam dance here. Articles and an interview due over on the Alex Gordon side of the street. Reformatting Contact Imminent in preparation for ebook conversion and proofreading.

Adjusting to the fact that 2016 is almost 1/6 over.

NE Illinois will get a taste of Spring this weekend. Sunny. Highs in the 50s. Then Winter returns because this is the Midwest in March that we’re talking about.

Just finished breakfast. Time to take Gaby to puppy playcare, then settle in and get some work done.


Mirrored from Kristine Smith.

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A Tuesday

Still in a post-con mindset, catching up on emails and wondering what I missed. Working on Alex Gordon interview questions, LAW OF SURVIVAL prep, counting down to the JERICHO release, and pondering new work. I need to fit taxes in there somewhere. And oh look, it’s already mid-February.

Capricon was fun. Saw a few folks I hadn’t talked to in years, and met some folks I had to that point known only online. The panels went well, too, with much good discussion about the purposes of SF (should it be predictive, or extrapolation, or commentary, or AOTA*), and about new technologies that may help overcome antibiotic resistance.

The con weekend did start out rocky on Friday morning when I rushed out to the car only to find one of my month-old tires had gone flat. Tried to fill it using my little garage compressor, but no go. Luckily, the tire place was on the way–they took the car right in, and fixed the tire. Turns out that I had run over a leveling bolt from a stove or refrigerator. Yup, hit it just right. So yes, the tire was fixed, and I made it to the con with 20 minutes to spare. But it irks me that my BRAND NEW TIRE already has a patch.

Next up–C2E2! Alex Gordon me has a panel; I’ll post all the info when I have it.

Cold and quiet outside today. Gaby is at the vet’s getting her teeth cleaned, so I’ll take advantage of the stillness and get an early start on work….

*All Of The Above

Mirrored from Kristine Smith.

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Another month, another convention.

Another drive-a-con. Even better, a commuter-con. I don’t have to pack.

My schedule:

What would SF Look Like in a Science Fiction World? – Friday, 02-12-2016 – 10:00 am to 11:30 am – River B
If starships and robots are part of your everyday life, what would your science fiction be about?

Reading: Kristine Smith – Friday, 02-12-2016 – 1:00 pm to 1:30 pm – River C (Cafe)

Autographing: Dale Cozort, Kristine Smith – Friday, 02-12-2016 – 2:30 pm to 3:15 pm – Autograph Table

Post Antibiotic Era – Saturday, 02-13-2016 – 11:30 am to 1:00 pm – Birch B
What do we do if we run out of antibiotics? Between antibiotic resistant bacteria, and the possibility of civilization falling, it is a distinct possibility that in the near future there will be none left. How can we take care of infections and diseases without them?

Mirrored from Kristine Smith.