Life Imitating My Art, part… yeah

Let’s start with a graph…

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And end with a quote from my novel, Friend & Ally (emphasis mine):

Hakane took another drag off his cigarette in Somi Corporation’s breakroom, laughing at his colleague’s comment.  It wasn’t so much their company discouraged smoking as that they wished to make sure their products were not contaminated.  Given the delicacy of some of the prototypes, all respected this rule.

“Can you believe it, Atazaki?” he asked, flourishing his newspaper.  “The US economy imploding like this?  I’m an engineer, not at economist, but how in the world…”

“Call it belief; call it faith.  Lose it, and your world ends,” his friend replied, looking at a domestic part of his own newspaper.

“What’s that?”  What Hakane knew of politics could fit into a sake cup.

“Since the war,” for a Japanese, that meant only one thing, “the world economy had the US dollar as its reserve currency, backed, not by gold or silver, but by the faith – mind you – that the US will always be there!”

Atazaki glanced at the clock over the inner door and decided one more cigarette was in order.

“So now we find,” he said, pointing at Hakane’s paper with his lighter, “that as the American President is being removed via extra-Constitutional means, the Russians, Chinese, and Indians are rolling out a new currency… what’s it called?”

“The ria,” Hakane managed.

“Whatever.  Backed by the gold they’ve been buying up for a generation, and indexed to oil.  At that point, US dollars became valueless.”

Hakane was still confused.  But why…

“Why is there rioting in the US?  And getting worse so fast?”

Atazaki blew a blue-grey cloud toward the ceiling’s scrubbers.

“It’s a replay of what almost happened back in 2008:  credit dries up, the velocity of money drops to zero.”

Atazaki realized his friend didn’t get a single word.  He tried again.

“Credit cards stop working; all the zeros and ones in banks are gone, and, for the Americans,” he took another drag, “their food-welfare cards, whatever they’re called, stopped working.”

He exhaled again and sat back.

“All cities in the US are starving right now.  And there is nothing… nothing at all, to stop it.”

Atazaki took another drag while looking out the window at bustling Osaka.

“They’re done for.” Quieter.  “God help us; we’re all alone.”

Breaking Barriers

Crested 51k total words today; lay down about 4k.  My liver might be dying but I seem to be getting the hang of writing on my days off.  Fausta’s combat android has just shown up in the Knoxville area along with important things… such as the plot!  Some unusual, for me, exposition below the fold.

Continue reading “Breaking Barriers”

Life Imitates my Art, etc.

Several Russian banks have joined the China International Payments System (CIPS), to ease operations between the two countries, according to a senior official at the Central Bank of Russia (CBR).

“As for the cooperation on payment systems, a range of banks are already connected to CIPS, allowing to facilitate payments routing procedure,” Vladimir Shapovalov, who heads a division dealing with foreign regulators at the CBR’s international cooperation department, said earlier this week during the international Russian-Chinese forum.

Wow.  No one saw that coming.

Continue reading “Life Imitates my Art, etc.”

Details, details…

As a guest of the local county library system, I am a “Featured Local Author” for a book fair on Saturday.  My 3+1 prior works are all in the box, ready to go.  I’ll be making a 60×40 inch backdrop will all covers and something about Machine Civilization on it to hang behind me.  Cash to make change and my Square card-reader for the plastic.  I’ve learned from observation to bring candy and put it in a bowl on my table.  People will stop and, guilty about taking something for nothing, ask about the books.  Sneaky, sneaky!

This is a jacket & tie event for me, so I’ll be cosplaying an adult.  An adult with a flask of whiskey; the close of the event could prove much more interesting that its open.

The sole partial fail is that I’ve only five proof copies of “Friend and Ally” available.  I’ll have a sign-up sheet if anyone else is interested, but still, that’s on me.  There will also be a laminated image of the front cover of “Foes and Rivals,” that Jacoby Alley should have complete in two days, with “Coming for Xmas 2018!”

And my table cover.  And the price sheet.  And the easel.  And the business cards.  And…

The World Imitates my Stories, really

From the news, today.

From Chapter 13, page 207 of Cursed Hearts:

They walked quickly, generally to the southeast. Emma had told her new acquaintance that the Geisel Library was at the center of campus, so it was easy to find local food vendors set up around it all through the day. As Miss Barrett’s stomach continued to growl – embarrassing her for some reason – the sooner they got there, the better.

“…came here after getting my BS at Portland State.” Emma sighed. “The Breakup began just afterward. Most people left, but there was nowhere for me to go… so, like some friends of mine, we stuck it out here.”

“I do not understand how the world’s superpower could have been so stupid as to walk into that trap.”

“T… trap?” Taller, Emma worked to keep pace with the young woman. “But I thought just a coin-”

“Idiot.” Emma was learning quickly that her new acquaintance lacked manners. “Your President removed via extra-Constitutional means just as Russia, China, India roll out a new currency?” She stopped and turned so quickly, Emma almost ran into her.

“Look at you.” The scowl was there, but Emma hoped it was a spark of mirth she saw in those odd eyes. “You’re a walking cliché: blue jeans and blue eyes; blonde hair and an unnecessarily large chest! All the while knowing nothing about how this world really works! Bismarck was right!”

“Bi… Bismarck?” Maya shook her head and turned back around, looking at the Library.

“They should crucify this architect, too.”

Clue-by-fore

Walking away from the keyboard yesterday – but never from all those in mind – at dinner I chuckled to my wife, “…nothing I’m writing right now!  Guess I could just throw…”

She looked up as I trailed off.  Now well knowing that far-off look I get when imagining, she kept her peace.  I came back to myself (someday, I think, I shan’t) and looked up.

“A novel on the cheap:  I take the 36k words/9 stories I wrote during Lent, toss in the 12k from Empire’s Agent, come up with one more, and call it an anthology of short stories of Machine Civilization.” As this was business and not creation, she looked to Daughter #1 and asked about her homework.

I thought about it more today.  Initially, I despaired:  the 2nd longest story, Abandoned Factory, is set in a borrowed world, that of Yoshitoshi ABe’s Haibane Renmei.  Japanese copyrights never expire!  I’d have to toss that one out!  Later, tired in the afternoon, I recalled Comiket and the Japanese doujinshi industry:  light novels, manga, anime, a goodly portion of which are entirely based on other’s works.  And sold commercially…

I’ve still some legal matters to follow on, but “Machine Civilization Dreams,” a compendium of 11-12 short stories covering nearly twenty years in that world, is a distinct possibility!

 

Books Spring 2018