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Trainspotting with Mr. Shepard

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Bruce Chrumka
Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2004 - 11:21 am:   

Hi Lucius,

I've been reading your work since Terry Carr suggested way back in '84 that you were definitely worth checking out. This was the paperback edition of 'Green Eyes'. The liner notes were promising, the cover looked cool and it was mere $3.25 Canadian.

Over the years, I'd read in intros to your work in various 'Best of the Year' anthologies, Nebula collections, headers to your stories in IASFM, Playboy, F&SF, etc., titles to projects that for one reason or other were held in abeyance, throttled at birth, used to wrap fish or merely had their title changed [like 'Psiderweb' to 'Life during Wartime']. I gather many of your pieces gestate for years, such as 'Unknown Admirer'. Could you comment on the disposition of some of the titles I've seen bandied about over the years?

Foreign Devils (Kalimantan?)
The Weeping Woman
Kingsley's Labyrinth (Kalimantan?)
Mr. Right
The Off Season
Family Values
The 'Velt
The Martinique (Emerald Street Expansions?)
What Dogs Want
Frait Trane (Over Yonder?)

Cheers, thanks

Bruce
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2004 - 04:09 pm:   

Bruce, I'm back online after a computer crash.
Need to do some other stuff, but will answer your question tonight.
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Bruce
Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2004 - 04:51 pm:   

Thanks Lucius.

I did forget one other title,

The End of Life as We Know It...I believe it was a post-apocalypse scenario set in the Northwest.

...and no rush! Sorry to hear your computer tanked.

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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2004 - 05:50 pm:   

FRAIT TRANE is Over Yonder
WHAT DOGS WANT is The Sparring Partner.
The Martinique is a story I work on now and then....
The Velt is a very grim NY novel that no one wanted to publish (too gloomy) and so I left it unfinished at about 200 pages
The Off-Season, now bearing the title The Smoke, is a novella project I may or may not finish. It's kind of cool horror, but sometimes I feel I may have outgrown it....
The Weeping Woman is a long story I cannot relate here.


Family Values and Foreign Devils and Mr. Right were projects that never got off the ground.
Kingsley's Labyrinth and The End of Life are novels I was writing in the early 90s when I lost interest in writing. I'd like to get back to them.
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Bruce
Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2004 - 06:16 pm:   

Brilliant! Much Thanks!!

I am definitely running out of things to pester you about. Last but not least:

Have you found a home for 'Unknown Admirer'?

...and can you give us a date you'll be free of the contractual obligation concerning your pseudonymous work?

Thanks again!
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2004 - 06:33 pm:   

Unknow Admirer is still unknown and will continue to be so for a time, until I have time to finish it....

No date available as yet....Maybe next year.
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Bruce
Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2004 - 06:55 pm:   

Again, my gratitude. Really made my day.

Cheers, Bruce
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Bruce
Posted on Thursday, February 26, 2004 - 04:44 pm:   

Just one more, Lucius...

'Miss Guatemala'?

Bruce
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, February 26, 2004 - 04:59 pm:   

Jesus, Bruce.....where did you get that one? Story I started, but I wasn't ready to write it yet. it's still hanging around.
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Bruce
Posted on Thursday, February 26, 2004 - 05:15 pm:   

Hey Lucius,

Swear to God, I'm not stalking ya! :0)

Snagged that off a weblog from a Clarion West '93 student of your, Robert Vamosi. I Googled 'The 'Velt' and that obscure little bit fell out.

Incidentally, I sure hope those 200 pages of 'The 'Velt' are still extant. 'Very grim NY Novel by Lucius Shepard'. After some of your latest efforts like 'Floater' and 'Only Partly Here', I'd think some people would like to see that project come to fruition.

Much obliged,

Bruce
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, February 26, 2004 - 05:28 pm:   

Actually, Ms. Guatemala was a story I was working on that I let the Clarion students see part of in order to demonstrate some technique or the other.

The Velt still lives. It makes Floater look like an episode of the Mary Tyler Moore Show.
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Bruce Chrumka
Posted on Monday, March 01, 2004 - 05:07 pm:   

Hi Lucius,

Today was a good mail day. My copy of 'Two Trains Running' arrived. The artwork, essays and stories made for an awesome, impressive collage. Terrific stuff. As well, a copy of 'The Father of Stones' arrived. I think it's a great novella and I'm kinda sorry you don't; no pleasing everybody. Deeply disturbed hallucinatory dustjacket. The interior notes credit J.K. Potter [whose signature is inside] but it sure doesn't resemble his typical style.

As I understand it, we can look forward to another banner year...

Two Trains Running [Golden Gryphon]
A Handbook of American Prayer [4 Walls 8 Windows]
Trujillo [PS Publishing]
Viator [Night Shade]
Weapons of Mass Seduction [Wheatland]
Liar's House [Subterranean]
'Hands Up! Who Wants To Die?' [Night Visions 11, Subterranean]

Would that about sum it up?

Thanks, Bruce
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Bruce
Posted on Monday, March 01, 2004 - 05:10 pm:   

"The Velt still lives. It makes Floater look like an episode of the Mary Tyler Moore Show."

Somebody's gotta convince you to finish that project when you get a chance! Yowza!

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Lucius
Posted on Monday, March 01, 2004 - 05:28 pm:   

Bruce,
that's it so far. but there'll be some stories, too. One in Polyphony, and I'm hoping to sell a couple to Ellen.

I showed the 'Velt to a couple of publishers, but they felt it was too depressing. Can't write it for free....

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andres
Posted on Sunday, March 07, 2004 - 01:57 pm:   

Dear Lucius:your work is constantly praised by the book reviewers at Interzone,and I think there was an interview to you a few years ago,but they never published one of your stories.
Why?You really don't send your work to them,or they just didn't buy any of your stories?
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, March 07, 2004 - 03:17 pm:   

Andres,

I've never submitted to IZ becaus I don't write short stories -- most of my stories are well beyond the length that they will look at, and usually the stories I write that do fall within their length requirements are not genre stories. Maybe someday...
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andres
Posted on Monday, March 08, 2004 - 04:40 am:   

One more question,and sorry for bothering you:how do you chose to which market send your stories in the first place?
For example:which stories do you send first to Asimov's or to FSF or to SCI FICTION?

In other matters:have you been in Argentina,my country?
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, March 08, 2004 - 05:46 am:   

Andres...No bother. SCI FICTION pay-rate is the highest, so I send Ellen a lot of my stuff first. But there are stories I don't think she'll like, or won't like enough -- after awhile, you get to have a feeling for an editor's tastes, though it may not be consistent. But there are stories I try to place in Asimov' s and F&SF first, because they have a wider readership. It's a very idiosyncratic process. I just have a feeling about a certain story and think that Gardner or Gordon might like this.

I was in Buenos Aires years ago -- I came over from Montevideo and went to Iguazu Falls. What a beautiful area! Afterward I spent a couple of weeks in Buenos Aires. It;'s been a dream of mine to come back someday and get down to Tierra del Fuego and Patagonia.
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andres
Posted on Monday, March 08, 2004 - 07:33 am:   

Thank you.By the way,I live 3 months a year in San Martin de los Andes,which is in the southwest of Patagonia,so when you come back here drop an e-mail to let us now,and it will be a pleasure to show you around.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, March 08, 2004 - 07:54 am:   

Thanks, Andres...that's very nice of you. I envy you your stay in San Martin....

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