The Return of Amazing Stories


Here's another project within the Canadian science fiction and fantasy community that really deserves your support. A group of dedicated science fiction fans are working hard to bring back a famous science fiction magazine and... well, I'll let them tell their story:

We want to bring back Amazing Stories as a print magazine. And there's one simple answer to all of the questions that might be asked of this Kickstarter Campaign, the people behind it, their motivations and what they intend to do.

It's a simple answer, but a powerful one.

We love Science Fiction.

And you love science fiction too.

None of us can say exactly how and why that is. We've each got our own origin stories, our own definitions, our own understanding of that Sense of Wonder and the Willing Suspension of Disbelief. Our own lists of absolute favorites and passionate dislikes, our own boundary lines for those things that do it for us and those things that don't.

In no small way, none of that would be possible had it not been for Amazing Stories. Yes, there have been more popular magazines in the field, more successful magazines in the field and, academically at least, the roots of science fiction can be traced back to the very first epic tales, but the publication of Amazing Stories in 1926 declared that those handful of progenitors, from Gilgamesh through Frankenstein, were not just a random collection of odd, imaginative tales They were the standard bearers for something unique and something very special. A genre called Science Fiction.

This group of dedicated individuals have set up a Kickstarter campaign in order to reach a goal of $30,000 USD. That covers the publication of two issues (Fall and Winter 2018), including printing, the commissioning of artists and the paying of writers. Another $30,000 guarantees a full year's worth of issues, and increments after that promise increases in payments to writers and illustrators. As a writer, I'm down with that, and I'm supporting this project by donating signed copies of all three books in The Unwritten Books sequence, and also Icarus Down.

So, if you needed an excuse to buy my books, here you go. You'll get good fiction from me (even if I do say so for myself) and you'll be supporting great fiction from the wider science fiction community.

Hanging Out With the Dream King
The Dream King's Daughter Becomes My Sixth Published Novel


Photo above by from Pexels. The title is a quote from the Tori Amos song Tear in your Hand.

It has been a little while since I've been able to talk about the fifth novel I wrote, entitled The Dream King's Daughter. It had been placed on the back burner a bit when Icarus Down leapfrogged it and was bought by Scholastic Canada in 2016. At the same time, The Night Girl also demanded my attention as I submitted it to REUTS Publications.

But it was more than that. After Icarus Down came out, I submitted The Dream King's Daughter to Scholastic Canada and had to sit quietly as the process worked way, as it does. I didn't want to jinx anything. Today, I am pleased to announce that patience has paid off. The contracts have arrived to be signed. Scholastic Canada has officially bought my YA/MG urban fantasy set in rural Saskatchewan.

Aurora Kelso is 15 when she realizes she's been living a dream - literally. Her job waiting tables at a truck stop, her childhood in small-town Saskatchewan, even her name: none of it is real. But the real reality seems to include thunderstorms made out of crows and monsters made out of grocery bags. Aurora's got only one thing going for her: all her life she's been able to read people's dreams by looking them in the eye. Armed with this uncomfortable ability and accompanied by her dream-less friend Polk, Aurora sets off to find her mother, the psychologist who wiped her real memory, and her father, the King of Dreams.

The Dream King's Daughter is tentatively planned for a Fall 2019 release, and I'm expecting to work on edits over the coming spring and summer.


Osgoode as Gold

toronto-comics-cover.jpgDespite the sheer number of books, comic books and other works of literature that are set in Toronto, it doesn't feel to me that my old home town has quite the same profile as cities like London or New York in fiction. And yeah, that's probably a literary version of Toronto's world-class envy, and it's probably mostly me, though I may not be alone. It's the sort of rush of pride that you feel when you see Toronto streetcar tracks on the streets of Chicago in shots in Due South, or the pride I felt seeing Toronto front-and-centre in the Hollywood release of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.

So, when I saw this project on Kickstarter of diverse, young Toronto writers telling stories about my old home town, I knew I had to support it.

From the Toronto Comics website:

In a city of competitive wizard barristas, nervous werewolves and scoundrel Trash Pandas, you'll find some of the best upcoming comic creators! We're back again with twenty-four fresh comics from local indie veterans and first-time creators.

From the strange giants that prowl Kensington at midnight, the vengeful Pacific Mall dance mafia, or the dragon-hunting wannabes working Queen street, we've got stories inspired by every part of the city we love.

Featuring a cover by Irma Kniivila (Ms. Marvel, Deadpool) and a foreword from Chip Zdarsky(Jughead, Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man), this book is a celebration of the talent and diversity of Toronto's comics community.

The Kickstarter for this 220 page full-colour book is here. Among the contributors to this anthology is my good friend J.M. Frey, as well as Julian Apong, Mirelle Messier, Sam Ruano and dozens more. It's clearly a labour of great love for a great city. I've placed my order for this book and the previous anthologies, and I highly encourage you do so as well. Delivery is estimated at June 2018.

"I feel a great disturbance in the force..."


The upstart JYSK (left) was advertised to me as "a Danish IKEA knockoff", so to see it so audaciously show up next to IKEA's Burlington flagship store stopped me in the parking lot. Already, I could hear the chants starting: "Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight!"

Mom Did What to 39?


Really hoping the answer to that is, "struck them out"...

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