Saturday, July 27, 2013

Readings and readings

Thank you all  for making my first reading from The Age of Ice, held at the University bookstore in Seattle, an awesome event. My next two readings will be in California: one in Pasadena and one in San Diego. Please visit my website's page Author Appearances  for schedule details and bookstore links.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Author news

My short story The Colors of Cold can now be read at Wattpad , an online library of free fiction, where I now have a profile.
I have also posted blog entries at the Campaign for the American Reader an excellent website dedicated to connecting readers and writers, a site that holds all answers to the question What to read next? 
My entries are here and here

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Introducing: Ice is Cool

The main character of my novel The Age of Ice, Prince Alexander, is obsessed with ice. Among the many ice-related things that he does, is ice sculpture. Here is an interview with a real-life, present-day ice sculptor and entrepreneur Tatiana Viquez, who lives in the hot Southern CA, and has kindly agreed to talk with me about thrills and challenges of her art, about girl-power and power-tools, and why her company is called Troubled Ice.

Q: Why ice sculpting?
A:  I'm an art lover, always have been. I draw, paint, work with pastels, create chalk murals, glass blow; basically, I'll try anything that lets me be creative. Which is pretty much how I became an ice sculptor. And honestly, once you see the tools you get to use as an ice sculptor, why wouldn't you want to be one? Chainsaws, chisels, rotary tools. I love the power. Sculpting ice gives me a rush I don't experience from dragging a pencil across a piece of paper.  I know that when I hold a power-tool with a hundred sharp teeth that could sever off any of my appendages, all my senses are heightened. And I get to wield this tool to make works of art that makes people question, is it glass?  Is it plastic?  No, it's water, it's ice, that’s the marvel!
Click here to continue reading 

Friday, July 5, 2013

A thorn in a beaver's mind

I read somewhere, a researcher was studying behavior of a beaver, that other animal who profoundly changes his environment (the number one animal who does it is us humans). It is a well-known fact that beavers watch out tirelessly for leaks in their dams. If they hear the sound of running water they rush to the site and execute repairs. The researcher played a trick on the beaver – played the sound of running water on a tape recorder. The beaver rushed in. Went to work. He worked and worked on a perfectly intact dam, while the tape played on.  The researcher concludes that the industrious rodent lacks in a certain kind of operational intelligence.
As a scientist, I agree.  As a writer, I see a caveat and a metaphor.  Do we not react the same way, when faced with an upset to our own little orders of things? We do what we can. We do our personal best. We do what we are used to do, trained to do. And sometimes, when the upset is beyond our comprehension or ability, we still do just that, keep patching a perfectly intact dam because we just can’t help it. Because all we know is that something, somewhere, somehow, is wrong -- we just can't understand what it is, exactly, that is broken.