Snuffy Larue's Spy Files


April 2nd, 2014

a book a book a book

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If you haven't read Karen Joy Fowler's WE ARE ALL COMPLETELY BESIDE OURSELVES, which just won the PEN/Faulkner award, you have a truly amazing book waiting for you.

This interview with the author is short, but excellent.

The best takeaway line from KJF, for me: "But mostly I believe that we shouldn’t do things we are unable to look at."

Should be required philisophy for all.

January 17th, 2014

(no subject)

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Over on Terri Windling's blog Myth and Moor, her winter poetry challenge is underway, lots of rich imagery and story to warm and color your winter. Poems from many fingers, among them the most wonderful Jane Yolen:

There's a couple little offerings from me in the mix (in the bear entry and the snowqueen one, so far).

I have been working, slowly, as is per for my me, with dayjob, on a novella, kind of a palate cleanser between novels. It has much strangeness and joy and darkness, so far.

December 30th, 2013

I wish I could use a bullhorn to shout some of these facts into the ears of the wealthy, entitled rightwingers who want to keep slashing the safety net and have no clue what reality is:

Filthy Lucre -

December 24th, 2013

(no subject)

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Hello blog. Nice blog. I'd pet you, but you'd probably bite me because you've gone tosky from neglect.

The posting interface is very wonky on the dayjob computer, over which, in terms of applications and browsers, I have no control. And I have a lot of other stuff to attend to when not at dayjob. That's the story, anyway.

But, I am off the rest of this week! Great sigh of relief and relaxation.

Did you know I'm on FB and Twitter? They're easier to update, so they get more updates. On FB. Twitter.

Some links:
You Can Help Build a Better Future by Majoring in English

Haunted Holidays: Scary Lady Writers forgotten by time, mostly because they weren't men.

Speaking of haunted holidays, a Christmas video card for you, Ho Ho Ho.

And on a different note, a song for Solstice, just passed, Sol Invictus by Thea Gilmore.

November 7th, 2013

When I’m having a rough time, and feel like I must not deserve to be happy because of everything happening or not happening in my life, in my body, these are some things that help:

The music cure
Talking to loved ones who I know love me
Naps with cats
A good meal with friends
Going to a movie in a movie theater, pref the Drafthouse so I can have a nice cocktail, too
A long hot shower
A massage

Crying my heart out; this one’s tricky, though. Helps, but must be followed by some love, some kindness, to soothe the raw and warm the hollow places with light.

October 22nd, 2013

some pics

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Some pics from MexicArte's early Day of the Dead parade, Viva la Vida.


the rest below cut...Collapse )

October 18th, 2013

grumpy linky edition

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What happens when a real journalist fact checks a Fox News story:

"...the best [they] can do is what Hannity did—exploit people’s ignorance and falsely point to imaginary boogeymen."

I am so over the "oh those poor innocent boys," victim-blaming, women and girls have all the responsibility and none of the power, rape appologist wing of this country. Teach your fucking boys not to rape, so this sort of horrible injustice can stop happening. If you can't do that, you shouldn't have children. The end.

eta: what happened in Maryville rape in Daisy Coleman's own words; brave girl

October 9th, 2013


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"...basically the same thing as shooting someone during a robbery and then explaining to the judge that it’s really their fault because if they’d handed over their wallet you wouldn’t have had to shoot them."

The 5 creepiest things about how the Koch brothers engineered the shutdown:

If they truly believed any of the crap they're raining down on the American people was true and fair, congress members who shut down the government over Obamacare would all give up their government paid healthcare right this instant. But they won't. Cause they don't. There's no compassion or reason or respect or care for actual people in them. Or in the Koch brothers.

October 8th, 2013

meanwhile, in my brain

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I’m on the side of animals
I’m on the side of art
I want to live in beauty, echo, laughter, glory, love
Emily’s cathedral heft in tree and arch, pillar and porch
I want to step through days in places full of gorgeous joy
In spaces rare and loved
Lavish palaces of thought and creation
Where nature grows in concert with the best that comes of human heart and mind
Together, twined, hidden, shown, cycling, alive.

In other news, them people all crazy. Cray-zee, I tells ya.

October 2nd, 2013


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No, it's not what the American people want.

Also this:

And this:

And this:

When ideologies become as calcified, as cocooned and as extremist as those galvanizing the GOP, the American system of government cannot work. But I fear this nullification of the last two elections is a deliberate attempt to ensure that the American system of government as we have known it cannot work. It cannot, must not work, in the mindset of these radicals, because they simply do not accept the legitimacy of a President and Congress of the opposing party.

The fact that they get paid while people will go hungry, children are denied cancer care, and many many people suffer, is absolutely unacceptable.  The far right running the GOP are as fanatical and fundamentalist and dangerous, in their way, as any terrorists in the world.

September 9th, 2013

on success

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An Emerson poem, with words that are still wise, and still much to the contrary of the measurement we internalize from our culture.

To Laugh often
and love much;

to win the respect
of intelligent persons
and the affection
of children;

to earn the approbation
of honest citizens and
endure the betrayal
of false friends;

to leave the world a bit
better; whether by a healthy
child, a garden patch or a
redeemed social condition;

to have played and laughed
with enthusiasm and
sung with exultation

to know even one life
has breathed easier
because you have lived...
this is to have succeeded.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

September 3rd, 2013


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WorldCon (aka LoneStarCon) was a lot of fun. Exhausting, drunke--er, tipsy--fun. Salient points: conversation with real live astronaut, a really lovely woman; stories of bears eating people; drinks. There was other stuff, too. More seriously, seeing a lot of friends and meeting some new ones, and having rich entertaining conversations with them, filled me full of a stellar sense of community. Thanks, everyone. You're all awesome.

And to recap, you can get a copy of RAYGUNS OVER TEXAS here: It will also apparently be available as an e-book at some point.

Here's an excerpt from my story, "The Chambered Eye":

Our seatrain, an old Doysen maglev skimmer, the distributed neural net of its light, flexible ceram-steel body latticed with manta ray and bowhead whale code, pulled in late the afternoon before, from another sector. It had been some other sector before that, all of them so alike they tended to blur. Most sectors are built on artificial sandbars in the endless sea, pressure sand made from centuries of refuse. Each sector rises out of the sea plains, a proliferation of towering garden-terraced structures. All of them laid out mostly the same, with a water conversion plant and a market at sector’s edge, and then the seatrain yards and docking slips.

Between these hubs of human life, there was only sea and the web of float tracks on an endless beading of amber bladder bubbles, stretching in all directions. The sectors—they had names, but I generally couldn’t remember one from another—were strung like gaudy baubles on the lace ribbon of tracks around the world. Except where there was no sea at all, just dust and the empty; they say there’s towns there, too, and nomad bands, but it’s just what they say.

August 25th, 2013

For those with an interest, my current writing playlist.

Entertainment       Phoenix  
Heavily (feat. Maurissa Tancharoen & Jed Whedon)   Joss Whedon    Much Ado About Nothing (Original Score)  
Main Title      Joss Whedon    Much Ado About Nothing (Original Score)  
Cups (Pitch Perfect's “When I’m Gone”) [Pop Version]  
Sigh No More (feat. Maurissa Tancharoen & Jed Whedon)   Joss Whedon    Much Ado About Nothing (Original Score)
Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)  Us3    Hand On The Torch
Enjoy the Ride (feat. Judy Tzuke)     Morcheeba    Dive Deep 
Far from Portland   Lau    Race the Loser
Heartbeat   Kopecky Family Band    Kids Raising Kids
The Woodpile   Frightened Rabbit    Pedestrian Verse (Deluxe Edition)
Cups (Movie Version)   Anna Kendrick    Pitch Perfect (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Apple of My Eye    Big Boi    Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors
Black River Killer    Blitzen Trapper    Black River Killer  
Little Talks     Of Monsters and Men    My Head Is an Animal
Let the Light In   Bob Schneider    A Perfect Day
The High Road   Broken Bells    Broken Bells
Once There Was a Hushpuppy    Dan Romer & Benh Zeitlin    Beasts of the Southern Wild (Music from the Motion Picture) 
Alice's Theme    Danny Elfman    Alice In Wonderland
From a Window Seat   Dawes    Stories Don't End
Down By the Water   The Decemberists    The King Is Dead
Red & White & Blue & Gold   Aoife O'Donovan    Fossils  
Wear Your Love Like Heaven (Single Version)    Donovan    The Essential Donovan
How to Save a Life   The Fray    How to Save a Life
Half Acre  Hem    Rabbit Songs
Save It for a Rainy Day  The Jayhawks    Rainy Day Music
Song of the Lonely Mountain    Neil Finn    The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) 
Simple Song   The Shins    Port of Morrow 
Otherside   Red Hot Chili Peppers    Red Hot Chili Peppers: Greatest Hits
Half of What We Know  Crooked Still    Some Strange Country
Silver Moon    Blitzen Trapper    Black River Killer
Recovery  Frank Turner    Tape Deck Heart (Deluxe Edition)
West End Girls  Pet Shop Boys    Please
A Common Disaster   Cowboy Junkies    Lay It Down
Safe and Sound  Capital Cities    In a Tidal Wave of Mystery
Dance Apocalyptic  Janelle Monáe    The Electric Lady  
Don't Swallow the Cap   The National    Trouble Will Find Me
Your Life Your Call   Junip    Junip 
Same Love (feat. Mary Lambert)  Macklemore & Ryan Lewis    The Heist (Deluxe Edition) 

August 22nd, 2013

WorldCon reading...

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Just an update to my WorldCon scheduling; reading, as part of the RAYGUNS OVER TEXAS reading and signing, will be Saturday 5-7 at the Convention Center, room 007A. I will only be there for the reading portion, as I have a panel at 6. Also, I'm not listed on the program for the reading, but I will be there. I don't have another reading, so it's your only chance to hear my dulcet tones rendering my own immortal prose! ahem. (The reception for the anthology is still Thursday 6:30-8:30 at the San Antonio central library.)

Should be a jam-packed hour of readings.

August 21st, 2013

I have a soft spot for the crazy characters, the ones who are a little mad--too something for the world, cracked and stained and in places broken by it, but with brilliance coming through the cracks. The ones who are outsiders even among the outsiders. River in Firefly, Suzanne (Crazy Eyes) in Orange is the New Black, Parker in Leverage.

Suzanne writes poetry; River--well, River is like a lethal incarnation of a dervish; Parker flies and gets into places no one else can. These particular fictional depictions of mad and crazy, mind you, are--even given difficult childhoods and present pain for the characters--quite romanticized. The whimsy somewhat outweighs the horror and pain. But I love that. The idea that light can come through those cracks, that damage, that someone not quite right in the head, cracked, raised by wolves, whose father once considered putting her in an institution, can come out wonderful, brilliant, crazy awesome; interesting.

August 19th, 2013

The Z Radiant ebook!

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Originally published by Five Star Speculative Fiction back in 2004, my first novel THE Z RADIANT is now available as an ebook! It's been brought out by Biblio Publishing with new cover art and it's available for all formats. You can get it through the Biblio site, or at Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

ZRadiantCoverWeb"This is thinking readers' sci-fi."

From the Library Journal review: "Suspense and action combined with four strong and distinct protagonists make this debut a good choice for most sf and mature YA collections."

Here's the first chapter.Read more...Collapse )

August 17th, 2013

WorldCon schedule

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Here is my panel schedule for WorldCon; the only reading I have is at the Rayguns Over Texas reception and reading, so please come to that! When not participating in my somewhat odd assortment of panels, I will be available for drinking.

Rayguns Over Texas Reception & Readings

Thursday 6:30 - 8:30

This reception is the launch of Rayguns Over Texas, a new anthology edited by Rick Klaw. Note: This event will be held at the central branch of San Antonio Public Library.

Rick Klaw (M), Don Webb, Chris N. Brown, Jessica Reisman, Scott A. Cupp, Joe Lansdale, Josh Rountree, Stina Leicht, Mark Finn

Turkey City Turns 40

Friday 12:00 - 1:00

The Turkey City Writer's Workshop and Neo-Pro Rodeo is the stuff of legend. How did it begin, and what hath it wrought?

Chris N. Brown (M), Eileen Gunn, Don Webb, Jessica Reisman, Howard Waldrop

Ghosts of Texas Past: Oliver, Utley, Reamy, Mayhar

Friday 1:00 - 2:00

Friends and fans talk about great Texas authors that have passed: Chad Oliver, Steve Utley, Tom Reamy, Ardath Mayhar.

Bradley Denton (M), Becky (Rebecca) Haynie, Jessica Reisman, Howard Waldrop , Willie Siros

Literary Estates

Friday 4:00 - 5:00

Do you have a will? No one likes to think about making a will. But one of the components of an estate is intellectual property. Literary and artistic works fall under that rubric. Digital rights also need to be considered. The panelists will have a general discussion of these issues.

Melinda M. Snodgrass (M), Melissa Conway, Jessica Reisman, Art Dula, John Berlyne

Do SF Stories have Fewer Happy Endings Now?

Friday 6:00 - 7:00

In the 1940s, 50s and even 60s the Good Guy usually won and the Earth was saved. How and why did our stories' endings change?

Bryan T. Schmidt (M), Jessica Reisman, Martha Wells, David Nickle, Grant Carrington

The Role of the Companion

Saturday 1:00 - 2:00

The Doctor's companions are more than just your run-of-the-mill sidekicks. The companions change the Doctor and influence our view of him. This panel will discuss the affect of the Doctor's companions over the years.

David D. Levine (M), Julie Barrett, Jessica Reisman, Selina Rosen, Michael Damian Thomas

Stop Calling It a Kerfuffle

Saturday 6:00 - 7:00

It's harassment and it isn't cute. Bad behavior isn't new, but why are we still putting up with it?

Caroline Spector (M), Eileen Gunn, Steven Gould, Pat Murphy, Jessica Reisman

August 15th, 2013

Recently finished QUIN'S SHANGHAI CIRCUS, by Edward Whittemore, which I'd wanted to read for a while. Definitely worth reading, though it kind of loses something towards the end, for me. Still, the first two thirds are pretty exhilirating. Something happens with the writing that I'd never actually experienced before, style bridging to scope and breadth in a wild, sweeping way.

At the end of the ebook version, there's a little essay by editor Judy Karasik. She tells story about the interaction and intersection of her life with Whittemore's, and at one point says something about editing and writing, and the relationship between them, that rings so beautifully to me:

"My editorial letter advised--but most of all it paid attention. It is not so much the comments made by a careful editor that help a writer revise, I think, but the simpler fact that these comments show the writer that he is being watched. He is being watched intently by someone who tells him, in as many ways as possible, that this matters. And so he thinks harder, he reaches in all directions--plot, character, gesture, sequence, tone echo--and, so doing, activates the deeper and shadowed part of the brain where music and feeling are stashed. The place where stories begin."

I've only experienced this a few times with an editor, and frankly I long for it; it's why I persist in aiming for the traditional publishing route, a good house and a good editor, in these days of multiple platforms and access to new forms of publication.

August 10th, 2013


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A couple of links.

Economics vs fiction on human nature. Interesting. (and of course I agree, but I write fiction and read a lot of it and am not an economist)

Crazy interesting (to me) weird dreams last night/this morning. Entirely based on my own anecdotal experience, I tend to subscribe to the emotional processing theory of dreaming, though I also think it probably fills more than one function, physiologically speaking.

I will have an announcement or two, along with my Worldcon schedule, to post soon.

August 8th, 2013

Thursday's child...

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Lot of feeeelings in the last while; going to Maine, essentially to say goodbye to my father, the approaching half century marker of my life, the constant struggle to maintain perspective on the writing career and not let the lack the the career drain any of the joy from the writing itself. And believe me, that perspective has taken a skewing in the run up to the 50th birthday, vis-a-vis notions of what constitutes success.

Maine was deep green woods, rain, fog, sun; not talking to my brother about politics at all and thereby being able to rediscover that I like and love him; scritching of brother & sister-in-law's excellent cat; my sister's much loved company in the hard and sad of seeing my dad and then saying goodbye.

My dad, wheelchair bound in a nursing home, seems better able now to respond and express himself with quotes of poetry than with his own words. And he can quote a lot of poetry. Brains are interesting. He also rouses to say that certain aspects of the nursing home bring out the anarchist in him, and to call it the cuckoo house. Given the presence of a man who moans the name Caroline over and over, with breaks to moan wordlessly like a particularly disturbed ghost, and other expressions of dementia all around...I can't say he's not right. So, it was sad, and even more so because he was clearly sad to see my sister and I go. He did enjoy his lobster roll & cake, though.

There was a brief sojourn in spectacular Schoodic Point, then meeting one of my nephews at Colby College's new art museum and seeing some wonderful works, and more of my sister's company. Then there was a much delayed flight home, a missed connection, and rescue from a night at Newark airport by a wonderful friend to her Brooklyn abode for talk, tea, foster kitty scritching, four hours of sleep, the all important shower, and a ride back to the airport in the early a.m. That friend is a hero.

Thursday's child has far to go, still.
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