My Last Published Short Story

I’ve not been writing a lot recently, for a number of reasons. Another symptom of how much I’ve checked out of the writing lifestyle is the conspicuous lack of self-promotion for my last published short story. It’s not unlikely that this will be my last published short story ever. Luckily, this is probably the most fun of my published stories, and it appears in a very strong anthology of Texas writers.

It came out well over a year ago, but you can find Rayguns Over Texas online. My story “Babylon Moon” is a post-singularity Rastafarian space-opera with strong Lovecraftian overtones. And the other writers in the anthology are all Texans, so you know it’s got to be good.

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Obligatory Hugo Endorsements Post

It’s only one day left to fill out ballots for Hugo nominations, those of us who are WorldConnners. Here’s some suggestions. These are basically just people I know, but you can be certain that they absolutely deserve a nomination. I know that you’ve spent the last few months since WorldCon in a state of hibernation, torpor, or perhaps estivation ( you know ), but this is important.

Novelette

Babylon Moon by Matthew Bey

Short story

texas died for somebody’s sins but not mine – By Stina Leicht
I Will Trade With You — by J. M. McDermott

Best Graphic Story

Black Science
Sex Criminals
Adventures of the Red Panda

Editor Short Form

Rick Klaw

Professional Artist

John Picacio

Semi-Prozine

The Drabblecast

Fanzine

Space Squid
RevolutionSF
Bookworm Blues
My Bookish Ways

Fancast

Revcast
SF Signal Podcast
We’re Alive: A story of survival

John W. Campbell Award

Max Gladstone
Marshal Ryan Maresca
Rhonda Eudaly

Does that make sense?

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An Interview with My Grandfather

As my Grandfather approaches his 90th year, his writing career is kicking it up to the next level. Here’s an interview with him where he talks about his prior career and his writing process.

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After the power goes out…

…this is what I look like.

IMG_20140220_110709

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Testing the Facebook comments box

It’s come to this, my blog is now simply a sandbox for testing projects from work.

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unidentified fish1

Mysterious Fish From Texas Gulf Coast

unidentified fish1

This is a post which is open pandering for a fish identification. Over the weekend I was fishing off the Caldwell Pier in Port Aransas. It was about one in the morning and just a little after high tide. I caught the fish at about the third guts, about seventy feet south of the pier. It bit on a couple of previously frozen piggy perches rigged two feet from the bottom. When I was reeling it up, I thought it was just a whiting, because it was about the size of a large one. It wasn’t until I had it on the deck of the pier before I realized how odd it looked.

The gold color is an artifact of the camera and the light conditions, in real life it seemed more silvery, like a mackerel. I don’t recall the eyes being walleye like that, but they could have been.

gulfcoastmysteryfish

After I took its picture, I decided to use the stainless steel forceps to get the circle hook out. And it’s a good thing I did, because it started biting the metal with an audible crunching sound. Its mouth wasn’t very big, but it was crowned with some Nosferatu bunny fangs and some finger-amputating strong jaws.

Any rate, I threw the thing back, and neither the guy at the bait shop and the guy at the tackle shop recognized it. So now I’m asking the internet in general.

Edit 11/11/13:
I posted this fish to the forum 2coolfishing.com and it was the general opinion of the gentlemen there that this was a smooth puffer.

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foam fly lure spider

The Foam Gaga Spider – Fly-tying recipe

Foam Gaga Spider
Foam Gaga Spider
The foam Gaga Spider takes all the delicious, buggy elements of sub-surface nymphs, and combines it with the fast and furious top-water action of a foam spider.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 1

Ingredients:
  • size 14 to 18 dry fly hook
  • beige thread
  • small plastic barbell eyes (optional)
  • brown goose biots
  • yellow/chartreuse crazy legs
  • brown and yellow foam
  • yellow dubbing
  • Aqua flash
Instructions:
For this fly-tying recipe, start the thread on the hook size of your choice. Tie on the barbell eyes. If you use these, they should be a light material, not the sinking barbells. At each end of the hook, tie on the goose biots to form antennas. Starting at the curve of the hook, twist on layers of the yellow dubbing until you build up a buggy nymph-like body. At the body's midpoint, tie on three to four rubber crazy legs. Fold the flash into a bow and tie above the legs. Then fold the flash back and tie it so it angles back from the midpoint like the wings of a fly. The final layer is the foam, which is tied at the very top. Don't go overboard with this, you only need enough foam to keep the hook floating. I would recommend a brownish layer to give a naturalistic presentation to fish observing it from below, and a yellow layer on top to make it easier to spot against the surface of the water for anglers observing from above.

You know what fly tying puts me in the mood for? Who’s the Boss Fan Fiction

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A microscope. Just because.

image

I just bought this microscope from Goodwill. It was only five bucks and promised to enlarge things as much as six hundred times.

So far the only thing I know for sure is that q-tips may clean smudges, but they also leave a lot of tiny fibers on microscope lenses. The other big discovery: my spit is filled with lumpy stuff.

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whitebass and largemouth

A Couple of Big Bass

whitebasspixellated
I was biking through South Austin this evening and I noticed that some of the red buds had started to bloom already. As a fisherguy that of course made me think about a year ago, near the end of the white bass run when I finally managed to get myself into some white bass fishing. Okay, it was only one white bass. Nevertheless, to prevent anyone from finding out where I was during this particular fishing victory, I have obscured all of the identifying details of the location.
white and largemouth bass
There was a regular old bass too, of reasonable size. The two of them together made for a most gratifying pile of filets, which I fried up as soon as I got home.
whitebass and largemouth

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Third Degree in Float Chair

Day Trips Fishing the Colorado River

Largemouth Bass by 973

When the weather’s right, the fishing team will head down to the old Colorado River for a little swimsuit fishing. Now that I’ve had some more experience with the Colorado, I would have to compare it to Lady Bird Lake, in that it’s convenient, but it’s also likely to give you a good fishing day just about as often as it completely shuts you out.

But if you get into the right spot, you can get into some decent largemouth bass action. The largie in the first photo here was caught on a spinner cast out into the center of the stream. There was no particular finesse to it, it was simply a matter of keeping the lure in the water for as long as possible.

Detritus Under 973

One of the more interesting sites in the Colorado is the bridge which crosses down by Austin’s airport. A pile of detritus and bleached sticks lies across the upstream side. There is at least as many manufactured objects in the pile as there are natural. I tried walking across it in my aquasocks and it felt spongy, because the whole mass was floating. I didn’t stay long. I had visions of falling through and drowning, my body held underwater by rusty nails and half-crushed bottles of polyethylene terephthalate.

Third Degree in Float Chair

Third Degree and I went on a semi-epic wading trip during the heat of the summer. You can wade for a kilometer at a stretch along the Colorado, but then there’s that ten-meter section where it’s up to our neck. For those deep sections I brought along my inflatable chair, a surprisingly versatile piece of aquatic hardware.

We stood on a steel pipe which crosses the river and cast into a hole on the downstream side which was known to hold some big bass. When Third Degree caught his precious mini-Rappala on an overhanging tree on the far side of the hole, the only solution was to put him on the inflatable chair and drift him after the lure on the end of the tether.

I hope you can appreciate the level of coordination I had to exert in order to take a picture of Third Degree with one hand, hold a rope so he wouldn’t float away to Bastrop with the other hand, all while balancing on a slippery pipe while thigh deep in a swift current.

Third Degree at the End of His Rope

I’m not saying it was tough for me, I just want you to appreciate how other people would find that tough.

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