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Transcript of #sffwrtcht

In case you want a break from the generally disturbing news, here is the transcript of a lovely hour-long chat I had on Twitter at the hashtag #sffwrtcht.  Thanks to Bryan Thomas Schmidt for hosting an excellent event.  Topics included my next book, Mayan December, writing, collaborating, and dogs.  Well, you know, there has to be dogs.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.


Okay – so this is the least interesting of the three “How did I do in my predictions for 2010 posts” unless you find failure interesting.  This what I had to say about society and government, where I went out on a limb into international relations and fell off, landing face-first in the mud:

Prediction: The hard-line Iranian government will fall, and some confusion will follow. This will help in Iran, although it won’t solve all of the problems.

How did I do? Missed the mark.  There was a recent (failed) attempt to get him impeached, and he may not make it through 2011, but the general scenario I predicted must have been wishful thinking. The people did not overthrow him, not one little bit.

Prediction: China will see more protests about a variety of things (not sure, though, what they will do about it – I don’t see an Iran-like situation but more continued flexibility).

How did I do? Missed again.  Yes, there were some protests in the spring, but there has been more news about the government of China protesting our actions (or other government’s actions) than about the Chinese people protesting.

Prediction: The US will have tighter working relationships with Canada, and maybe with Mexico. Changes to NAFTA may be talked about seriously and tied loosely to immigration discussions

How did I do? Three strikes.  We still have a good relationship with Canada, but it hasn’t particularly strengthened this year, and of course Wikileaks has weakened it as it has weakened diplomacy everywhere. Not much though, as far as I can tell.  As to Mexico?  It’s drifting ever closer to a failed-state status, at least across the whole of its border with us.  There appears to plenty of black-market trade in guns and drugs.  This is nothing new, and not at all what I meant.

Prediction: Once health care is passed (or not), attention will be split between changes in energy use and more anti-terrorism measures. These are, of course, tightly linked. People will begin to see the linkage more clearly.

How did I do? I’m not sure what happens after a fourth strike. The real story was the economy and instead of the logical linkage of alternate energy and jobs (there was some linkage and some stimulus money in this direction, but less than there should have been) we ended up with fights over tax breaks and an agreement that’s sure to break the bank further.  If we’re already in debt, how about we add more by extending tax breaks that were supposed to go away and extending unemployment and not paying the piper now for either choice?  Wish I’d been right, sorry I wasn’t, but I wasn’t.

Prediction: Iraq will feel like a memory, but Afghanistan – not so much. The usual war-hungry republicans will try to take Obama down through his position on Afghanistan, but what they’ll really do is save him from immolation by the democrats for his position of Afghanistan. In other words, politics as usual. Whatever the party in power is doing will be slammed by the party that’s out of power, even if it’s their usual MO. We will stay ridiculously divided across senseless lines of red and blue light.

How did I do? Almost right.  Iraq is a memory, Afghanistan is a current focus, and the country is – if anything – more divided.

So not so good on these.  There were wildcards, of course, including wikileaks which may leave a different world in its path.  But that didn’t directly affect most of my failures.  International relationships are more of an interest than an area of expertise, so I think I’ll just leave out this category on 2011 predictions.  I’m capable of learning my strengths and weaknesses.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

My Father’s Singularity to be included in Year’s Best
The short story “My Father’s Singularity”  which came out in Clarkesworld earlier this year has been selected as one of the stories for the  popular anthology Year’s Best Science Fiction edited by Gardener Dozois.  The anthology is likely to be available in early 2011.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

Analog December, 2010

The Hebras and the Demons and The Damned is now available in the December 2010 issue of Analog Science Fiction and Fact.  This is the earliest story I’ve published in The Five Worlds milieu.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

The Blue Curtain, an Essay
I have an original essay in the benefit collection, “Breaking Waves,” now available as an e-book in multiple formats at the Book View Cafe.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

A recent short story of mine is “My Father’s Singularity,” which came out in ClarkesWorld Issue #45

The story is available to read online, to purchase for Kindle, or as a podcast.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

Wings of Creation

Wings of Creation by Brenda Cooper

Reading the Wind cover image

“The sequel to The Silver Ship and the Sea (2007) and Reading the Wind (2008) is intense and increasingly complex. Cooper continues to limn interpersonal relationships in considerable depth, including this time those of some individual fliers. Happily, the ending suggests yet another episode to come.” - Booklist

Available now from Tor Books in hardcover, on the Kindle, and on ibooks.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

Reading the Wind

Reading the Wind by Brenda Cooper

Reading the Wind cover image

Audio promo:

“Brenda Cooper’s newest novel is a feast of character and concept. She depicts the devastation of war on microcosmic and macrocosmic levels, and even more so, the driving motives of young men and women caught in deadly conflict. Cooper is a master explorer of the interaction of society and individuals. She probes the psychology of her genetically enhanced characters with both rare depth and fidelity to scientific plausibility. Moral conundrums drive the plot in this unforgettable narrative. Don’t miss this compelling work by a major new talent.”
- Mary A. Turzillo, An Old-Fashioned Martian Girl.

“Brenda Cooper tells a tale of a powerful brother and sister in a fight for their lives, offering insights along the way into the nature of courage and the hunger for community that burns in every human being. This is a lively book, full of colorful images and a memorable cast of human and animal characters, a worthy successor to The Silver Ship and the Sea.”
- Louise Marley

Available in July, 2008, from Tor Books.

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

The Silver Ship and the Sea

The Silver Ship and the Sea by Brenda Cooper

Silver Ship and the Sea cover image

Audio promo:

“The first solo novel by Larry Niven’s Building Harlequin’s Moon (2005) coauthor portrays the thoroughly
convincing human colonial society on Fremont, a dangerous planet rife with vicious predators, frequent earthquakes,
and falling meteors….Distinctive characterizations, well-limned interrelationships, and the
vividly realized Fremont contribute to an exciting coming-of-age story with a strong message about the evils of prejudice.”
- Sally Estes, Copyright American Library Association.

Mass Market Paperback, July 2008.
Included by Booklist as a “Best Adult Book for Young Adults.”

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.

Building Harlequin’s Moon

Building Harlequin’s Moon by Brenda Cooper and Larry Niven

Building Harlequin's Moon cover image

“Fans of both hard and softer, psychological SF will welcome veteran Niven and newcome Cooper’s well-written tale of a 60,000 year layover in space, in which physical challenges of world building are matched by the social challenges of collaboration among disparate groups.” – Publisher’s Weekly

Mirrored from Brenda Cooper.


Brenda Cooper

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