Chris Garcia on DMF9

Chris Garcia is a regular contributor to Dark Matter in terms of letters.  After DMF9, I’ll be putting letters and press releases on the website rather than in DMF, so that they can be read while they’re current.  I’m also hoping we can get a conversation going by using the immediacy of the web.  Here is Chris’ latest letter:

Good issue, and GIANT!, and as always, lots of good readin’!

This weekend is Baycon and Brandon Sanderson is the Writer GoH! I’m hoping to get him on the first episode of #HardCopyPodcast (the only podcast solely distributed on Cassette tapes!) and getting to meet him should be fun. I mean, he’s a REAL Podcaster! Plus, he wrote the end of the Robert Jordan Wheel of Time books, which I always sorta considered to be SF&F’s versions of the Ravens at the Tower of London: once there are no new Wheel of Time books, the genres do fall!

Congrats on the Chronos Award nominations! I especially like that cover you got nommed for!

Damnation and Dames sounds a bit like one of my favorite detective novels: Nothing Burns in Hell by Phillip Jose Farmer. Might have to get that!

EJO! I love that guy! I met him at Cinequest and we chatted. I recommended a movie that he took his family to (including his Mother!) and he found me later and said that he’d enjoyed it! He was a really nice guy and I’m glad I got to meet him. With the 30th Anniversary of Blade Runner just down the pipe, I’m surprised we’re not seeing more of the folks involved talking about it. He had my favourite line – “She won’t live, but then again, who does?” Masterpiece! One of BR’s writers lives less than 5 miles from where I type these words. Maybe it’s time to go and get an interview with him!

Still haven’t seen Iron Sky, though it’s had a couple of American showings already.

Forgot to mention, great cover. Very moody.

I’m not as big a Parity fan as many, I fear. I Know, I know, it’s not about the representation of voices for me, it’s the trouble of actually making the scheduling work! I think representation is an important thing, and getting close-ish to parity, if not even-stevens, is the goal, but sometimes, it just won’t work no matter how long you try to rearrange the blocks. Gotta work with what you got, and recruiting is a bigger part than has been made out in most of the discussion I’ve seen. Though, to be honest, I’d much rather focus on ethnic representation than gender, personally. ‘Round these parts, White Males make up a fair plurality, followed by White females, then a fair number of Asian males and females with other races with a minimal presence. That’s in SF fandom and not including the Anime fandom, where the numbers are quite different; far more diverse and a good deal younger. It’s odd when I’m the only Mexican on a program at a con in an area that is 25%+ Hispanic. I’ve written a few pieces on my attempts to bring my own family (voracious and destructive readers, one and all!), including one for Clarkesworld a few years back.

That Sean McMullen article is awesome stuff! I knew there was a reason I loved his writing. Because it’s good! It reminds me of the fine book I read by Brad Lyau about the French Anticipation novels of the 1960s: it’s an area I have no real knowledge of but a great interest in!

I loved Timeless, and I got to go to the release party in San Francisco with Gail and a bunch of the good folks I know from local Steampunk events. I liked, but don’t know if I’d say I loved Timeless. There were still questions I wanted answered! I reviewed it, and touched on the rest of the novels, in http://efanzines.com/ExhibHall/ExhibHall-20.pdf.

On the matter of fanzine vs. Semi-pro, it’s a tough line. I love what you do, and it does feel a bit like Locus back in the day, which to me is a very good thing. With The Drink Tank, I write what I like, I grab stuff from whoever’ll drop me content, and I put it out when I can without any sort of consideration, but compared to the average issue of DM, it’s a slight triffle of a zine. You basically put out a news-and-reviewed filled issue that compares to the Drink Tank 300, which nearly killed me. I guess what I’m trying to say is do what you can, I’ll be here to read and enjoy it!

Haven’t seen Melancholia yet. I love Von Trier, his previous SF film Epidemic being a terrible film and the more realistic being near-masterpiees (or in the case of Breaking the Waves, an ACTUAL masterpiece) but for some reason I haven’t gotten around to this one. I might watch Boss of it All again first…

I think Morgan Spurlock is a giant braying ass. That said, he makes a helluva movie! Pom WOnderful Presents The Greatest Story Ever Sold is a wonderful film, and I think it captures the difficulty of being an artist of any kind in today’s climate. I think his interviews were great and the subtle stuff (did you catch the fact that the camera was placed so that Morgan was blocking the Odwallas?)  and all in all, it was nicely entertaining.

OK, I’ve got this meeting to go to and now I sign off!
Ciao!

Thanks Chris.  As always I appreciate your letter.  Thanks for the feedback on the nominations and especially that cover: I felt very self-conscious about that cover…  You might have noticed I haven’t done another painted cover – or, indeed, another painting – since, I’ve been using photographed covers instead.  You should have seen me reading the nominations…  I think I double and triple checked the nominations before I finally accepted that yes, several people had nominated me for that cover.  My husband and I weren’t two of them!  I’m really touched by the nomination and really encouraged.  It’s really encouraging and I’m thinking of doing more artwork for future issues.

I was also surprised to see myself nominated for Meg Mundell’s interview – yay Meg! – in the category of fan writer.  I wasn’t aware that interviews could be put in that category.  I’m putting that particular interview’s nomination down to the fact that Meg has been nominated and shortlisted for a number of awards for her spec fic novel Black Glass.

I’d love to chat more about some of the other topics you’ve raised, but I have a day job temporarily and I need to get ready.  Perhaps over the next few days I can add to this reply.

cheers
Nalini