Friday fanfare: “The Weight” at the Americana Awards

At the Americana Awards in 2012, they paid tribute to the recently deceased Levon Helm with a lovely rendition of “The Weight,” which was performed by Amy Helm, Teresa Williams, Larry Campbell, Emmylou Harris, John Hiatt, Sam Bush (doing amazing work with the mandolin), Booker T. Jones, Bonnie Raitt (who also plays some stellar slide guitar), Brittany Howard, and a bunch more.

I’m’na be at Starbase Indy this weekend


I have heard nothing but good things about Starbase Indy — an Indianapolis-based Star Trek fan con held over Thanksgiving weekend — for years, and this year I get to see for myself! I will be one of the guests at SBI this weekend, alongside actors Mary Chieffo (L’rell on Discovery), Chris Doohan (son of James, played his father’s role of Scotty in the Star Trek Continues fan films, as well as a transporter operator in the first two Bad Robot movies), Tracee Lee Cocco (a regular extra on The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, and Voyager), and Mimi Craven (Jisa on Voyager); performers Marc Gunn, Moxie Magnus, The Shake-Ups, Klingon Pop Warrior, and Mikey Mason; and scientists Dr. Erin Macdonald and Shannon Eichorn.

I’ll be spending most of my time at the table they’re giving me signing and selling books (as well as Wrenn’s stuffies), plus I have a Q & A on Saturday morning at 10am in the Main Bridge room.

Come on by and see me!

Across the Universe now available for preorder!

Now available for preorder: Across the Universe: Tales of Alternate Beatles, edited by Michael A. Ventrella & Randee Dawn, coming out next month from the fine folks at Fantastic Books. The anthology reprints two classic alternate takes on the Fab Four, Spider Robinson’s “Rubber Soul” and Gregory Benford’s “Doing Lennon,” plus new stories by Matthew F. Amati, Eric Avedissian, Patrick Barb, Charles Barouch, Pat Cadigan, Brenda W. Clough, Gregory Frost, David Gerrold, Alan Goldsher, Sally Wiener Grotta, Carol Gyzander, Gordon Linzner, Gail Z. Martin, R. Jean Mathieu, Jody Lynn Nye, Beth W. Patterson, Cat Rambo, Kenneth Schneyer, Christian H. Smith, Allen M. Steele, Bev Vincent, Lawrence Watt-Evans, and me!

My story “Used To Be” — which takes place in the Dragon Precinct universe — will be joining this very illustrious company, and introduces us to the Fabulous Foursome, a group of adventurers in Flingaria, Jahn the bard, Paol the wizard, Gyorg the cleric of Rish, and Starki the barbarian.

The anthology already got raves from both Library Journal and Publishers Weekly, and now you can preorder the trade paperback or the hardcover from Amazon or Barnes & Noble! (EDITED TO ADD: the book is out now, so the links below are now ordering links, and the eBook editions are available as well.)

Check it out!

Oh, and we’ll be doing a group reading at Brooklyn Commons as the December New York Review of Science Fiction reading on the 3rd of December! If you’re in NYC then, come on by! Co-editor Randee and publisher Ian Randal Strock will be there, and I know for sure that I will be there, as will several of the contributors. Hopefully it will be even more successful than the group reading we did at Philcon earlier this month (picture below).


L.-r.: Eric Avedissian, Michael A. Ventrella, Randee Dawn, Sally Wiener Grotta, Charles Barouch, Carol Gyzander, Gordon Linzner, Gregory Frost, and me

we got stretch goals!!!!!

We’ve made our funding goal for “The Gorvangin Rampages: A Dragon Precinct Story” and “Ragnarok and a Hard Place: A Tale of Cassie Zukav, Weirdness Magnet,” but that just means we got stretch goals!

If we hit $2000, which we’re only $130 shy of right now, folks who get the story bundle along with the two stories will also get my Super City Police Department novel The Case of the Claw. And there are more for further goals, so please consider supporting the crowdfund!


I’m’na be at GalaxyCon Louisville this weekend!


From 22-24 November 2019, I will be at my penultimate convention of the year, GalaxyCon Louisville at the Kentucky International Convention Center in the home of baseball bats. I’ll be most at Bard’s Tower, Booth 1140 on the exhibitor floor, alongside fellow word-slingers Megan Mackie, Weston Kincaide, and Shannon Eichorn.

In addition, I’ll be on three panels with my fellow Tower denizens, all of which will be in Panel Room L006 in the convention center:


4.15-5.05pm: “Fantasy Worlds & Writing: World Building for Professional and Aspiring Writers,” also with J. Michael Straczynski


1.15-2.05pm: “Playing in the Sandbox: Writing in Shared or Other Universes”


3-3.50pm: “Professionalism for Aspiring Writers”

I should have copies of Alien: Isolation, the “Precinct” books, A Furnace Sealed, my Supernatural novels, and Star Trek: Tales of the Dominion War (plus possibly some others) for sale at the Tower, and you can always bring stuff to me to sign.

Hope to see folks there!


Short Treks: “Ask Not”


The shortest of the Short Treks has a predictable plot and continues Starfleet’s traditions of being mean to people who are training for things, but it works because Anson Mount’s Christopher Pike remains magnificent. Check out my review of “Ask Not.”

An excerpt:

Seriously, we have got to see more of these people. They built a whole Enterprise set (we see engineering for the first time in this short), and those aren’t cheap. They’ve got a popular, excellent trio for the top of the ensemble ready to go. It isn’t easy to fill 55-year-old shoes occupied by the most popular character in SF TV history, Gene Roddenberry’s wife, and Jesus Christ, but Peck, Romijn, and especially Mount have not just filled the shoes, but continued to dance in them. If there isn’t a Pike show on CBS All Access some time in the next year, a serious crime against nature will have been committed.