The Nature of Magic vs Science

Waterhouse Cauldron

Recently best-selling author Dave Farland wrote this article about the cost of magic. It’s an argument I’ve encountered before, and the short version is, everything must have a cost. If you cast a spell, the power has to come from somewhere. It’s the basic Law of the Conservation of Energy, one of the rules that keeps the universe ticking along. In other … Read More

Book Review: How To Be a Heroine

how to be a heroine cover

I don’t write a lot of in-depth book reviews these days. Part of it is practical: with three kids home for the summer, a novel due by the end of the year, and assorted smaller projects, there just isn’t time. I do always give a star rating on Goodreads; Amazon is a non-starter these days, given their arcane rules for … Read More

Guest post: Logan Masterson on the Facets of Death

Death Plays Battleship

Logan Masterson (that’s not him above) is, like me, a Tennessee writer of speculative fiction. Below he talks about death in fiction, how it affects us, and why it’s important. Facets of Death No, not faces, facets. In fiction. Fictional facets of the very real human experience. Let’s get into that. The Tufa, they have an eye on death, and means … Read More

How everyone, deep down, is “Like Me”

Chely Wright with flag

So one time I met Chely Wright. It was around 1998. I worked in a Nashville mall at the Bombay Company, a repulsive chain store that sold overpriced foreign-made furniture and faux artsy knickknacks. I was the assistant manager, and took it as seriously as I did most of my other jobs, which meant that I worked no harder than … Read More

Thoughts on Black Widow and Joss Whedon, two months late

Hulk chases Black Widow

(I’m always behind the curve on whatever’s cool, which is why I’m posting about The Avengers: Age of Ultron while everyone else is discussing Jurassic World.) It’s no secret that many fans, particularly feminists, had issues with Age of Ultron when it debuted a few weeks back. Their ire centers around writer-director Joss Whedon’s treatment of Black Widow, a.k.a. “the … Read More

Guest blog: Curious Research and Sightings of the Modern Day Faery

Twig the fairy

At this year’s Pagan Unity Festival (a.k.a. PUF) I met Kiki Dombrowski, who conducted a workshop on the history and persistence of stories of faerie folk. She was also kind enough to write a guest post for me about this very topic. *** Faery sightings are not so out of the ordinary after all. Tales of real life encounters with … Read More

The Music of Release Day

Long Black Curl cover

So today, the third Tufa novel, Long Black Curl, hits stores and devices. The pre-release reviews have been good ones, and that’s always a comfort. But the finally judgment really comes from the people who buy it. Hopefully, you. Like Wisp of a Thing, the prior novel in the series, this book also features song lyrics by contemporary indie artists. Here’s … Read More

Guest Post: Touching from a 35-year Distance

joy-divisionrehearsal

April 30 marked the 35-year anniversary of Joy Division’s video for “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” in many ways their most defining, and certainly best-known, song. I discovered their music shortly after the death of singer and lyricist Ian Curtis in 1980, and they’ve been one of my touchstone bands ever since. But I wondered if they were simply a … Read More

Some Thoughts on the Chosen One

Baby_Kal-El_In_Ship

There is a concept, a hidden implication, in the original Star Trek series that James T. Kirk might not be unique. He might be merely one of many Starfleet captains out there boldly going, having amazing adventures across the galaxy. After all, the Enterprise is one of a dozen identical starships, and the rest are certainly not sitting in space … Read More

Guest blog: Sonya Clark on Getting the Music Right

Guitar_fretboard_closeup

I meet a lot of writers through social media, and one day I was chatting with Sonya Clark, author of the Magic Born trilogy and two novels in the Bradbury Institute series. It turns out she’s working on a novel about music, and her thoughts on that intrigued me so much that I asked her to share them with my blog readers. … Read More