Reader Request Week 2023 #2: The Future of Social Media

Stars & Arrow asks: I’m curious about your thoughts on the future of social media, beyond the current doom-spiral of Twitter and the struggle to figure out a replacement for that. I keep thinking of all the ways social media has been used in the past, particularly in countries wh … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Reader Request Week 2023 #1: The Fallout From Abortion Restrictions

Time to begin this year’s Reader Request Week, and why not start on an absolutely-non-controversial-in-any-way topic, suggested by LadyCat: Quick sum up: What are your thoughts about your family, specifically your wife and daughter, remaining in Ohio for the long term due to its … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Quick Update on the Researcher Gig

Which is: I’m still sorting through applicants. There are a lot of you, folks, and you are all so good. I’ll have a final decision by the end of this week. Thanks for your patience, there’s only one of me doing the selection. — JS | Continue reading | 1 month ago

New Music From Me: “Just Here For the Bassline”

Krissy and Athena are away for the weekend, and between eating donuts and pestering the animals, I played around with my digital audio workstation and came out with something with a pretty killer bassline, with a bunch of other bleepy and bloopy stuff around it. It’s kind of if a … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Kaiju Preservation Society a Locus Award Finalist + Final Two Days For Hugo Nominating

First things first: Kaiju is a 2023 Locus Award finalist, in the category of Science Fiction Novel. This delights me, both for itself, and for the company it keeps. Here’s the full list of finalists in the category: SCIENCE FICTION NOVEL I’m not going to complain about that peer … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

An Electric Pause

You may recall that roughly two years ago Krissy and I put in a reservation for a Ford F-150 Lightning, the Ford Company’s first all-electric truck. I was excited about this; aside from being a cool vehicle in itself, it had several features I was keen about, including the abilit … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Reader Request Week 2023: Get Your Requests In!

It turns out that next week is the first week in a while where I am not traveling and/or am slammed by work, so you know what that means: It’s an excellent time to do the annual Reader Request Week, in which you pick the topics, and I write about them! No topic is too […] | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Big Idea: Julie Nováková, Lucas K. Law and Susan Forest

There’s more to life than humanity, and in the hybrid anthology Life Beyond Us, editors Julie Nováková, Lucas K. Law and Susan Forest dig into the differences, why they matter, and why they should matter to us. JULIE NOVÁKOVÁ, LUCAS K. LAW, SUSAN FOREST: Imagine that the fate of … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Two Beauts From The Bradford Public Library Sale

Yesterday, my dad and I went to our local library’s book sale. I was on the hunt for old cookbooks, and started rifling through the adult nonfiction to find some gems. I ended up finding three cookbooks total, one of which I already have, so I only ended up getting two. They were … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Big Idea: Cory Doctorow

For years, Cory Doctorow has carved one of the most idiosyncratic paths in the genre of science fiction and fantasy, combining feats of speculative fiction with a life of political and social advocacy in the tech sphere. So it’s no surprise that his new novel Red Team Blues combi … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Big Idea: Kat Howard

Some stories beg to be written, and sometimes characters do the same. In author Kat Howard’s case, she intentionally left a door open for her character to walk through so she could write her again. Read on to see how this turned into her newest novel, A Sleight of Shadows. KAT HO … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Travel By Bullet Out in Print and eBook From Subterranean Press

If you were waiting for the text-based editions of the third installment of the Dispatcher series, good news: They’re out! Both the signed, limited hardcover edition of the book, and the ebook version, are generally available. As the hardcover edition is both signed and limited, … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Goodbye Sidebar Twitter Feed

A note for the folks who visit the site directly, rather than see these posts via email/RSS feed: For several years I’ve had a sidebar widget that posted last several tweets here; Athena has one too. However, at the end of the month Twitter is severely restricting access to its A … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Mama Mia! The Super Mario Bros. Movie Sucked!

I had low expectations when I went to the theater to see the The Super Mario Bros. Movie, but somehow it was worse than I was prepared for. Maybe that’s my fault for having at least a shred of hope going in, as I had seen from several trusted sources that it wasn’t actually that … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

What the Scalzi Family Foundation is Up To

You may recall that we’ve created a corporation, the Scalzi Family Foundation, to manage and focus our charitable giving out in the world. If you’re wondering what that might entail, here is our first thing. (For those of you who don’t want to click through, we’re sponsoring the … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Still In Hollywood

And you see some very strange things while you are here. Cool! But strange. Welcome to the weekend. Any plans? If you’re in Los Angeles, you should come to the LA Times Festival of Books, where I will be appearing on a panel on Sunday at 1pm. But if you are not going to do […] | Continue reading | 1 month ago

My Glamorous Los Angeles Experience

One day this will be me! Move over, Nunnally Johnson! (He was a screenwriter, by the way.) This trip to LA has been fun and interesting and I think fruitful so far, with lots of meetings about some cool things which may or may not ever come to pass, but no matter what people have … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Close To Home: Speakeasy Miso

For a few months, I’ve had my eye on an upcoming restaurant called Speakeasy Miso, as I patiently waited for them to open their doors in downtown Troy. Last week, they held a soft opening to showcase their drinks and izakaya style bar food, and I jumped at the opportunity to fina … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Happy Birthday, Krissy

She’s fabulous, but you knew that, and it’s her birthday today, which you may not have known. If you wanted to wish her a happy day, you could do so in the comments below. — JS | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Big Idea: Philip Plait

Here on Earth, we have a pretty decent view of the universe (when it’s not cloudy, or when there’s light pollution, or the sun is out, or…). But the universe looks different depending on where in you stand. Or so Dr. Philip Plait suggests, in his new book, Under Alien Skies. PHIL … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Flowers, 4/17/23

They’re for Krissy. Because she’s great, that’s why. But I thought you might like to see them too. — JS | Continue reading | 1 month ago

My New EP “How Far From Home Do You Want To Go” Is Out Now

Sunday is not the usual day for releasing new music, but then it’s not like my homemade electronic stylings are a cog in a huge music company machinery, it’s just me uploading stuff through Distrokid, so: Hey! Guess what! I have a new EP out today! It’s called How Far From Home D … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

New Books and ARCs, 4/14/23

The air is warming, the buds are blossoming, and, look! A stack of new books and ARCs has arrived at the Scalzi Compound! What here is catching your eye? Share in the comments. — JS | Continue reading | 1 month ago

“Researcher Wanted” Update

Ten days ago I posted a freelance job listing for a researcher and I wanted to update everyone on the status of things there. One, wow, I got a huge response and nearly 200 applicants, nearly all of whom (at a rough first glance) are ridiculously qualified. This is terrific and I … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Big Idea: Melissa Scott & Amy Griswold

The Victorian Era is a world we think we know… but as Melissa Scott and Amy Griswold tell us in this Big Idea for Death By Silver, beneath what we think we know is a world that must be inferred… and then explored. MELISSA SCOTT & AMY GRISWOLD: It’s not too much of an exaggeration … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

A Small But Important Change to the Big Idea

If you read the Big Idea posts — and you should! — you’ll know at the end of each post there is the post-essay informational part, which includes links to booksellers, excerpts from the book, and then links to the author’s personal site and Twitter presence. Well, starting today, … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Big Idea: Piper J. Drake

People are a mish-mash of where they or their ancestors have come from, and where they are now (among, of course, many other things). But as Piper J. Drake makes clear in this Big Idea for Wings at Once Cursed and Bound, these elements of who were are are often in unexpected comb … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

In Which I Praise Accountants

Got back our taxes from the accountant today. This year’s taxes are, to put it charitably, a tangle: not only my usual hodgepodge of royalty and option statements, but also matters attending to the church and its renovation, our rental property, interest and investments, and a bu … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

The Big Idea: Chika Unigwe

All too often, people can do the wrong things for what they think is the right reasons. In author Chika Unigwe’s Big Idea, she goes into detail about how things done out of “love” can end up hurting people, and how this sort of situation inspired her new novel, The Middle Daughte … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

How To Look Haughty, Featuring Spice the Cat

I mean, just look at that expression. It says “It doesn’t matter to me whether you live, or are thrown screaming into a thresher,” and it says it with style. Take notes, people. This is how it’s done. — JS | Continue reading | 1 month ago

How I Will Survive the AI Revolution

I asked the Bing AI to write a paragraph about the Easter Bunny in my style. This is what it wrote, and then this is the conversation we had afterward. Bing: Here is a paragraph I wrote in the style of John Scalzi about the Easter Bunny: The Easter Bunny was not amused. He had [… … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Good Music for a Good Friday

From the band boygenius, whose new album The Record is getting all the accolades, and deservedly so; it’s my favorite album of the year so far. Enjoy, and have a reflective and worthwhile Good Friday and/or Passover or final day of the work week, depending. — JS | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Springtime in New York

It’s pretty all right, I guess. I’m in town for an event tomorrow (4/7) at the City Winery (details here, if you haven’t seen me write about it here already), and I got in a day early to get situated and to visit around the town. As some of you may know, certain politicians from … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

Working Through the Suck, Musically Speaking

I’ve mentioned before that when it comes to making music and using the stuff for doing that on the computer, I am still at a stage that I would consider “enthusiastic amateur.” This is to say, I like playing with all the toys that I’ve accrued, but my knowledge of how they all wo … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

The Big Idea: Courtney LeBlanc

While strong emotions like sadness or grief can be powerful motivators for writing, author Courtney LeBlanc was determined not to let the heaviness of her poems overwhelm her reader, and turned to a fellow poet for help. Come along in her Big Idea to see how she solved her proble … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

Wanted: Researcher. Details Below.

I’m looking for a freelance researcher to help me generate some data for my upcoming novel. The data I require will be (to put it mildly) somewhat esoteric but absolutely needs to be rooted in physics and other scientific knowledge that we already know today. The researcher will … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

The Big Idea: Ness Brown

If you’ve ever wondered if aliens are out there, author Ness Brown is right there with you. In their new novel, The Scourge Between Stars, aliens might be a lot closer than the characters think. Follow along in Brown’s Big Idea to see if we’re really alone in the universe. NESS B … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

Reminder: I’m in New York This Friday for the Cabinet of Wonders

I’m going to be performing at Wesley Stace’s Cabinet of Wonders alongside Chris Collingwood (Fountains of Wayne), Dave Hill, Bill Janovitz (Buffalo Tom), Vicki Peterson (The Bangles), Queen Esther, Kim Richey and of course Wesley Stace himself. Most of them will be performing mus … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

New Music: How Far From Home Do You Want To Go

More space-y electronica from me, for you. Not just you, mind you. For anyone! But also, you. Enjoy. (PS: This one rewards headphones) — JS | Continue reading | 2 months ago

The Big Idea: Stark Holborn

Thinking about the potential change your choices carry can be paralyzing in the decision-making process. Such is the case in author Stark Holborn’s newest novel, Hel’s Eight, and in Stark’s own journey for writing it. Follow along in the Big Idea to see how overcoming this led St … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

Trump Indicted and What That Means

(Photo by Gage Skidmore (see original), used under Creative Commons license (CC BY-SA 2.0) . Additional editing and typography by me.) The question has never been whether Donald Trump is a criminal. Everyone knows exactly what he is. The question has always been whether he would … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

Universal Yums: March 2023 Review

Welcome, everyone, to another Universal Yums review! The last one I did was in November, and then I paused my membership because the holidays were coming up and I knew I was going to be too busy/too full of holiday goodies to be able to focus on snack boxes. But the pause-period … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

The Big Idea: Tiffani Angus & Val Nolan

Have you always wanted to give speculative fiction writing a go, but felt like you could use a hand, or two, or five? Authors Tiffani Angus and Val Nolan are here to lend you all the hands you might need with their new guidebook, Spec Fic For Newbies. TIFFANI ANGUS & VAL NOLAN: A … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

Reader Participation Thread: Music That Made You Stop

I’m thinking a lot about music these days, in no small part because of my own fiddling with the form, so I’m curious: Can you think of a song that so affected you that the first time you heard it, you stopped everything else you were doing to listen to it all the way through? […] | Continue reading | 2 months ago

The Big Idea: J. L. Worrad

What is an urban legend without people to tell their tale, and spread fear into the hearts of others? Luckily, author J. L. Worrad is here with a new novel to keep the legend of his hometown monster alive. Read on to see how he utilizes this boogeyman in The Keep Within. J. L. WO … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

New Music: City At Night

One of the synthesizer plugins I have has a preset called “Los Angeles 2019,” and if you’re nerd enough to get that this label is meant to evoke Blade Runner, then you’ll understand why I had to play with it. This is what came out. Dark, clattery and slightly spooky. Enjoy. — JS | Continue reading | 2 months ago

The Big Idea: Lavanya Lakshminarayan

Coming up with one main character can be hard enough, but author Lavanya Lakshminarayan came up with over twenty in her debut novel, The Ten Percent Thief. Read on to see how all these individual stories took form and shaped into one book. LAVANYA LAKSHMINARAYAN: I first met my a … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

The Spareness of Early Spring

That moment when the world has begun to warm, but the trees haven’t quite caught up with the news. In another month, these branches will be full of new leaves. For now, though, still bare as in the dead of winter. Makes for a pretty shot, however. — JS | Continue reading | 2 months ago