Non-Fiction Online

Essays

About Stable Strategies...
"A Celebration, an Appreciation, a Meditation and Possibly Even a Shamelessly Blatant Promotion But by No Means a Review of Eileen Gunn's Stable Strategies and Others"

Aelita Con Report
"Aelita is built around the yearly presentation of the Aelita award, given for an author's total contribution to science fiction. Which effectively makes it Russia's science fiction hall of fame."

Despair and the Duck Lady
"The best possible introduction to a book by R.A. Lafferty is one that begins «And they also tell the story» and ends «Is that not an odd introduction? I donít understand it at all.»"

Fantasy as Filmware
"I humbly proffer a half-dozen source fantasies, all British and all guaranteed, in the right hands, to make everyone involved a fortune."

Five Things Iím Enthusiastic About This Month
An opera, a magazine, an actor, a retrospective and a collection...

Growing Up in the Future
"The future is easy to see when it's large and off in the distance, like a dirigible filling the sky. Not so easy when it's upon you. You stop paying attention, and it disappears."

Inside Jack Daw's Pack: An Interview with Greer Gilman at SF Site
"[Jack Daw's Pack] is a dense, allusive work and one that rewards close study. Those very qualities that make it most interesting [...] in the hope of opening it up to a wider readership, I began an interview via e-mail with Greer Gilman about her work. The fruits of which are as follows."

Introduction to Another Green World
"Henry Wessells is, as he himself says of (perhaps) someone else in quite a different context, «a dealer in rare and antiquarian dreams.» Which dreams have been preserved herein for connoisseurs of the strange and carefully wrought."

Introduction to Mutiny in Space
"To read Mutiny in Space today is like having a window into the past. The world in the year 1964, when this novel was first published, was greatly different from the one we know today [...]"

The Lady Who Wrote Lud-in-the-Mist at infinity plus
"We all know what a fantasy novel looks like. Small wonder that Lud-in-the-Mist seems so odd to us, though it was taken in stride by its original readers in 1926."

Letters to the Editor at Asimov's
"«Letters to the Editor,» it has been established, is non-fiction because it's a collection of letters I really did send Sheila under those circumstances. After selling it to her, I found out that normally their regulars are spared the recurrent form letter - but she kept sending it to me because she enjoyed my rants.
Still, I had the satisfaction of selling Asimov's their own form letter."

Lord Vacant on the Boulevard of Naked Angels "is a compilation of extracts from my dream diaries.
"Dreams are like weather. They are no more independent of each other than today's sunshine is independent of yesterday's rain. They occur in patterns lasting days, weeks, even months."

Memorial to Octavia Butler
"Octavia Butler was a woman who looked for the most difficult and important task she could possibly do, and then did it."

Profile of Terry Bisson
"I know Terry Bisson well enough, I guess. But I'm not at all sure there's anything I can tell you about him that you don't already know."

Profile of Gardner Dozois
"Odin gave an eye for wisdom. Gardner paid for his editorship with his own fiction."

Profile of Gregory Frost
"... what matters is that [Greg Frost] went on to write Lyrec and Tain and Remscela, bright and striking fantasy novels that I wholeheartedly commend to your attention."

Profile of David Hartwell
"[David Hartwell] has, in short, filled every ecological niche in the publishing universe save one — that of a fiction writer."

Profile of Ian R. Macleod
"By testimony of his stories, then, MacLeod is particularly fascinated by or concerned with re-inventing, improving, changing, or redeeming the past ..."

Profile of Paul McAuley
"But just when things looked bleakest, a new generation of Brit writers arose to put the lie to all that had been said. [...] In many ways, Paul is the exemplar of the movement."

Profile of Jack McDevitt
"If you want to know what Jack McDevitt is like - really like, down deep and to the bone - you could hardly do better than to read a few of his books."

Profile of Tom Purdom
"In 1990, something remarkable happened. Tom Purdom emerged from his long near-silence with "A Proper Place to Live," a light and amusing whimsy which those who know him could only read as a love letter to his wife. Its publication in Asimov's heralded his return to the field as a writer to be taken seriously [...]"

Profile of Amos Tutuola
"I do not know if Amos Tutuola was a literary genius or merely a conduit for the storytelling genius of his people. But to read The Palm-Wine Drinkard is to be transported back to one's first rapturous connection with literature ..."

Profile of Robert Walters
"Robert Walters is a magician, and like any true magician he works hard. [...] This meticulous craftsmanship is the reason why his art can be seen in the Smithsonian, American Museum of Natural History, the Carnegie, and other great science museums."

Reading Rhetorics of Fantasy in the Real World
"On those rare occasions when I discover such a work, I prefer to wallow in it, to, as Scrooge McDuck put it, "dive around in [it] like a porpoise . . . and burrow through it like a gopher . . . and toss it up and let it hit me on the head."

Scribbledehobbledehoydenii
"I'm not sure exactly how many notebooks I've filled by now [...] But I only went through the oldest, those dating back to 1973 and 1974."

Six Things I Brought Home from Finland
Three books, an ashtray, a bottle and a useful word...

Twenty-one things I'm enthusiastic this month
From anniversaries to awards to conventions to martinis...

The View from the Top of the Mountain
"We're in a global culture now. And it's a least common denominator culture, where Baywatch counts for a lot more than Bayreuth."

The View from the Wharf Rat
"A Letter from Otakon 2006 in Baltimore: I am here simply because, as a writer, itís important to avoid falling too far behind in my understanding of the culture of my time."

Whispers through a Brass Tube: Collaborating with Avram Davidson
(caution - spoilers)

"Among his papers was a brilliant, maddening 5,000-word fragment titled «Vergil Magus: King Without Country». [...] It was a literary puzzle, waiting not so much to be finished as to be solved."

Winter Books for Reading Aloud
"Is it any wonder that so many of the best works for reading aloud are set in winter? It's then we need our stories most."

Reviews

Michael Swanwick Reviews James Morrow
(caution - spoilers)

"I don't know about you, but my immediate impulse upon encountering a story entitled "Arms and the Woman," and discovering that its first line is "'What did you do during the war, Mommy?'" is to fling the book or magazine containing it across the room before I can read another word."

Michael Swanwick Reviews Ursula K. Leguin
(caution - spoilers)

"You will suffer no lack of theoreticians to guide you through the higher meanings of Tales From Earthsea. So let's instead consider the three stories that are original to this book as individual and independent works."

Michael Swanwick Reviews William Gibson at Locus Online
"Gone are such weird and unlikely neologisms as 'flatline' and 'cyberspace,' replaced by infinitely more plausible coinages such as 'plasteel' and 'lasegun.'"

3 Short Fiction reviews by Michael Swanwick at Locus Online
"It's not even Thanksgiving yet, and already they're pushing Christmas. Case in point: The December issue of Analog contains three stories that even a curmudgeon such as myself can admire and enjoy."

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