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GENERATION LOSS

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liz Hand
Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2005 - 11:58 am:   

I finally finished the revision on GENERATION LOSS last week. Webmaster Zali is working on a redesign of my site to feature GL news, upcoming events, as well as a bigger archive of other material, including old and recent essays and reviews. So watch this space for the shape of things to come.
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justin
Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2005 - 06:54 pm:   

very cool, i can hardly wait!
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2005 - 07:19 pm:   

Congratulations, Liz. I'm looking forward to the new version!
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liz Hand
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2005 - 05:10 am:   

I've been teaching writing to middle school students and my brain is fried -- as a result, I forgot to mention that M Press, the fiction wing of Dark Horse Comics, will be publishing SAFFRON & BRIMSTONE: STRANGE STORIES. This will include three of the four stories from BIBLIOMANCY (not "Chip Crockett's Christmas Carol"), five recently published stories, including the four that comprise the story sequence "The Lost Domain," as well as 1-2 new stories that will be original to the anthology. I'm so excited about this as it's being edited by my old friend and editor Rob Simpson, who was one of the folks who discovered me back in 1986 at Twilight Zone Magazine. Rob and I then worked together on my first few novels at Bantam, as well as on some stories I wrote with my friend Paul Witcover, anf Rob also was the guy who brought me and Paul on board to DC Comics where we created and wrote our way-too-ahead-of-its-time comic series ANIMA, back in the early 1990s.

So this is a great reunion for me, and for everyone who's wanted a more affordable alternative to the beautiful limited edition of BIBLIOMANCY, this is it! Rob will also be publishing my Bride of Frankenstein novel, PANDORA'S BRIDE, which sets James Whale's creation off on her own in 1920s Berlin.

And the reason Chip Crockett isn't included is that it will be published next year in its own volume by Beccon Press, designed as a special (affordable!) Christmas book, with original etchings by artist Judith Clute.

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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2005 - 08:47 am:   

Kudos to Rob for making a smart move. I'm very much looking forward to the new books!
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liz Hand
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2005 - 11:15 am:   

Thanks. Me too. And yeah, Rob is great -- like you, a dream editor.
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yore ole cuz
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2005 - 11:54 am:   

hey, even I didn't know about Saffron & Brimstone -- congrats!
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liz Hand
Posted on Friday, October 14, 2005 - 03:08 am:   

Yeah -- I wanted to tell you when I called, but we haven't connected yet. I've been crazed with this teaching gig. Fun, though. And a nice respite from writing. I needed an enforced hiatus.
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kellys
Posted on Friday, October 14, 2005 - 11:52 am:   

Great news! Can we expect Saffron & Brimstone and Pandora's Bride out in '06?
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Sara
Posted on Friday, October 14, 2005 - 01:26 pm:   

This is such great news!

There is something about your language that I like so much. Itīs so imaginative. And the characters are so interesting. I study Folkloristics, Ethnology, Gender Studies and Art History at the university here in Sweden. I find that in your stories you touch upon themes that have with these subjects to do. So thatīs another reason I enjoy reading your stories.

When I eventually read those new stories I will be able to totally forget about my MA-thesis (I take the MA-course in Folkloristics and Ethnology) for a little while.
When I read Mortal Love I was in a place in Stockholm where you are surrounded by these big, old oak trees. These surroundings really enhanced the reading experience. When I read your new stories I will try to find a similar place.

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liz Hand
Posted on Sunday, October 16, 2005 - 12:04 pm:   

Yes, I do hope that S&B and Pandora's Bride will be out next year -- they should be, anyway. Ditto Chip Crockett.

Nice to hear from you again, too, in Sweden, Sara. If I had another life to live, I'd study folklore and mythology. I've always been kind of sorry I didn't have an academic career -- one of those "the road not taken" things. I like to read books in simpatico places as well -- like listening to music, so every time you hear a song you associate it with a certain time and place, or person.
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Sara
Posted on Sunday, October 16, 2005 - 12:14 pm:   

Donīt be too sorry that you donīt have an academic career- you have your writing career instead.
I think most people will always feel that there are things they could do with their lives that they arenīt doing. That proves how multi-dimensional we are as human beings. I think that in another life I would like to work as a Waldorf school teacher or as an artist.
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Mark in CT
Posted on Saturday, December 10, 2005 - 05:58 am:   

Hi Liz!
I've been a fan since Glimmering (my favorite of your books) came out. I'm almost quivering at the thought of getting three new books from you this year!!! Will Generation Loss be coming out from Morrow in the US?
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liz Hand
Posted on Tuesday, December 13, 2005 - 04:45 am:   

Hi Mark -- thanks for the kind words. No, I've severed my ties with Morrow/HarperCollins. My agent has long wanted me to write a book on spec, and so that's what I finally did with GENERATION LOSS, not without some trepidation. But i found the process of working this way was surprisingly liberating -- I was able to write more freely than I have since WINTERLONG, my first novel. Interesting. Anyway, the book will be making its way through the editorial world beginning with the New Year, and probably won't appear till 2007.

It's funny that you say GLIMMERING is your favorite of my books -- it's pretty much mine, too, despite (maybe because of) its flaws. I'm hoping that Dark Horse may bring it back into print: in the post 9/11 era, it doesn't seem quite as out of place as it did nearly ten years ago, when people seemed to find it too dark.

I'm brooding on a new novel that may have more in common with GLIMMERING than my other books -- a sort of contemporary fantasy that also is a series of alternate histories. I'm not sure if i can pull it off (plotting is not my string suit) but it might be kind of cool. GENERATION LOSS is a very, very dark novel, and I found writing something so naturalistic draining. So it might be good to have a change -- you know, a light, funny book like GLIMMERING.

Sara, I finished my teaching gig yesterday. I would not have made a good teaching academic -- maybe a research professor. But certainly not a high school teacher ...


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Mark in CT
Posted on Friday, January 20, 2006 - 05:26 pm:   

Hi Liz!

Really excited you replied!!! I've been reading this forum for quite a while, but never posted before the post that you replied to. I didn't think I'd fit in really. I'm more a horror/general fiction reader than SciFi, and more Kylie than punk rock. But I'm sure you have a varied fan base, so here I am.

I really hope you get a deal with a major publisher in the US! You're a bizillion times better than so many other writers who sell truckloads of crap.

I worked as the customer service manager for a small press distributor a while ago and while I think small presses are very important, someone of your talent needs major marketing campaigns and the backing of a a major press. To many good books get lost in the small press pile.

I had a great time when I was working for this distributor, and got to meet and work with a lot of interesting people, I actually became good friends with John Preston and got some of my own short stories (well pornography) published because of the contacts I made then.

Has your new manuscript been submitted to Knopf? I think you would be perfect for them. They seem to have an affinity for well written fiction, just a little off the mainstream, and they also seem to be very good at promoting women writers. And I can't imagine ANY publisher turning down a book by Elizabeth Hand. Your reviews for Mortal Love alone (all highly deserved) would make you a feather in the cap of any house!

The new novel you're brooding on sounds fantastic! And I respectfully object to you saying that plotting is not your strong suit! That's like saying Mozart composed a few ditties.

Well, thanks for reading my initial post, hope you read this one too. CAN'T WAIT FOR SOME NEW STUFF!!! And I go on suggesting you to friends and acquaintances, usually saying... "You haven't read her! She's a fucking genius!!!" I've made a few Liz Hand fans.

All the best to you and your family in the New Year!
My respect and admiration,
Mark
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Liz Hand
Posted on Saturday, January 21, 2006 - 06:09 am:   

Hey, Mark, many thanks, and aw shucks!

I just read your other post re: Mr. King. One of the things I really got into with GENERATION LOSS was writing about Maine, and trying to make it feel different than the Maine most people think they know -- you know, Stephen King's Maine, or Carolyn Chute's, or (god help me) the one in MURDER SHE WROTE, where sometimes you could see a palm tree waving in the distance. (I really, really hated that show.)

As for a new novel ... I keep going back and forth between thinking of another fantastic novel, or doing another noir novel. A lot will depend on where GL ends up. But, after I psyched myself up to it, I really got into the energy of producing a dark novel that didn't rely on supernatural effects. It was a very different kind of buzz than writing a fantastic novel; more amphetamine than hallucenogenic, if I can use a drug analogy without bringing the Feds down on me.

Yeah, Knopf would be a cool place, as would several other publishers. My ex, Richard Grant (still a close friend and the father of my kids) recently placed a novel there that will be coming out this year. Very very neat.

John Preston! That's a name I haven't heard for a while. I read his books, back in the day. That's nice you had a contact with him. He always seemed like a geneuinely decent person.

I'll keep you posted as to the book's ultimate home. I have several other projects in the pipeline, but I'm anxious to start the dreamwork of yet another novel.

Thanks again for the vote of confidence, Mark. Writers often work in a vacuum, even if we don't exactly live in one; it's always both heartening and humbling to have readers and a way to communicate with them. I feel very grateful and very lucky.

best,
Liz
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brainshades
Posted on Sunday, January 22, 2006 - 09:20 pm:   

Hey Liz -

If it's not out of place to ask, what's Richard's new novel about - isn't it titled "Another Green World"...? I've not read anything of his since "Through the Heart", but was curious what he was up to these days...
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Mastadge
Posted on Monday, January 23, 2006 - 05:15 am:   

I read a blurb a while ago -- four boys in WWII? Something like that. . .
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Monday, January 23, 2006 - 07:34 am:   

Doesn't Henry Wessells have a collection out called Another Green World?
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paulw
Posted on Monday, January 23, 2006 - 02:34 pm:   

Yes, that's the title of Henry's excellent collection (from the Brian Eno album).
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Liz Hand
Posted on Tuesday, January 24, 2006 - 04:49 am:   

Yup, that's the title of Richard's book, too. I actually think it's been used by someone else, other than henry I mean. It's about a group of young men in Germany, mostly prior to WWII, and their involvement in a real proto-Green (as in enviromental) group. A great book, what I've read of it. The legendary Gary Fiskejon (Brett Easton Ellis' editor, also Donna Tartt's, among others) is editing it, and it will be out this fall, I think. No supernatural element, kind of a suspense novel. I'm very psyched and very happy for him.
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Sara
Posted on Wednesday, January 25, 2006 - 01:00 am:   

Is it the Richard Grant who wrote "In the Land of Winter" that you are discussing? I read that book some time ago and I found it really sweet and touching.

By the way, I have a reading suggestion: "Agnes Cecilia" by Swedish author Maria Gripe. (Agnes Cecilia is an English translation.) Gripe is a really respected author here in Sweden whose books often contain elements of the fantastic (Agnes Cecilia is such a book). There are cheap second-hand copies of this book on amazon.com.
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Liz Hand
Posted on Wednesday, January 25, 2006 - 04:37 am:   

Yes, that's the same Richard Grant. Full discolsure: Richard was my first (and only) writing instructor in DC some 20-odd years ago; we subsequently lived together for eight years, and he's the father of my two children and lives just a few miles from here in Maine. He's a remarkable writer, and I hope this book brings him many readers.

I love all of Richard's books, but IN THE LAND OF WINTER and TEX AND MOLLY IN THE AFTERLIFE are particular favoriters, as they do a great magic realist twist on this part of Maine.

I'll look for AGNES CECILIA online -- thanks for the suggestion. Is Maria Gripe also the author of THE APRIL WITCH? That was a Swedish novel that came here a few years ago -- I can't recall the author's name now.

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Sara
Posted on Wednesday, January 25, 2006 - 11:49 am:   

I have got Tex and Molly in the Afterlife at home. Iīll have to read it now.
The April Witch was written by another Swedish author; Maj-Gull Axelsson. There are some great Swedish authors and some great Swedish books that unfortunately never have been translated into English.
Anyway, there is a great Swedish artist, John Bauer, who created fairy-tale pictures that I think would appeal to you. Some of his pictures can be seen here: http://runeberg.org/jbauer/

Sara

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iotar
Posted on Friday, February 03, 2006 - 06:55 am:   

>> Richard Grant... He's a remarkable writer, and I hope this book brings him many readers.

And there was me thinking he was the bloke in "Withnail and I"!
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PM
Posted on Thursday, August 09, 2007 - 03:44 am:   

On your website

GL is listed

under the forthcoming

Section.

It has

Arrived.

Those who read

It

survived.

And their

Reviews

are that re-

flection.
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Elizabeth Hand
Posted on Friday, August 10, 2007 - 03:57 am:   

Nice poem -- thanks. I must update that website soon (immediately)!
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Sarah M Ingram
Posted on Sunday, October 28, 2007 - 04:25 pm:   

I just finished my editor's read copy of Generation Loss, and, while not quite what I expected, it took me back to places I have been off the Coast of Maine, and loved, and parts of Cass Neary are much like me when I was her age. Now I'm so far away from there (geographically as well as personally), that until I read GL, I forgot I'd ever been there! Thanks for the recollection. when's Wonderwall slated for release?
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Bill Reynolds
Posted on Sunday, November 04, 2007 - 06:31 am:   

One does hesitate to make remarks like your new novel is better than your last 42 lest one engender the feeling "Hmmmm. What didn't he/she like about my last 42? Have I been doing something wrong all those years?"

Fie, woman, Fie, for did I not tell you in these very pages that Mortal Love brought me to tears?

Did I not tell you that While Longer is not always Better, neverthless I mentioned in these very pages that your prose is so vital that I preferred the UK edition of Waking the Moon to the US edition with all the cuts? Even though in the UK it was a paperback - blech.

Didn't I revel in the darkness of Glimmering?

Nevertheless Gen Loss is my favorite book of yours since Aestival Tide. Somehow it bought a frisson of harshness and madness to it's world that I've not seen in one of your books since Icarus Decending, and, in GenLoss, a protagonist who clearly bordered on the morally reprehensibile. Just fabulous.

Being of an advanced age and having overlapped the tail end of the Beatnick era, bridged the NYC hippie era (and there weren't all that many resbemblences, when you come right down to it, between, between West Coast Hippies and NYC Hippies) and I STILL "Keep on searching for those incredible highs" through the punk era and into No Wave before I stopped with the movement du jour. From the periphery of the Factory to Chick-Pea be-ridden Maxes, I kept running into Drella, but we never MET.

So much of GenLoss seemed autobiographical (for both of us) in ways that even Waking the Moon didn't. I can't waite re read it, but sooooooo many books soooooo little time. It also remineded me a little of Marianne Faithfull's autobiography.

Love it
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Elizabeth Hand
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 02:18 pm:   

Hi All -- forgive my tardiness in replying, and forgive too this in brief -- I'm visiting colleges with my daughter & not at home. Must fly now but will post here tomorrow night or the next day, when I get back to Maine and hae a chance to actually read these properly (and your other one, Sarah) -- I just didn't want you to think I'd fallen off the face of the earth! Thanks for writing & back to you soonest --

liz
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Vincent Singleton
Posted on Thursday, November 15, 2007 - 04:30 pm:   

Dear Elizabeth--
Last night I finished reading GENERATION LOSS, somewhat belatedly I admit (a move forced me to delay ordering). Anyway, I loved the novel.
Ellen Datlow had told me GL was your "darkest book yet," which I suppose is something of an understatement.
Although I was an early 70s hippie-type, I knew enough about Arbus and Mapplethorpe, Television and Patti Smith (my Queen of Doves!) and, well, certain intoxicants, to make GL come alive.
I just loved Cass Neary! And, Oh! that prose!
Earlier this year, I read SAFFRON AND BRIMSTONE, another masterpiece. Although I will always hold an especial place in my heart for WAKING THE MOON, I read everything you write and am--as I told a friend last night--never disappointed.
Pardon my effuse praise, please.
You are one of the writers whose work I automatically buy.

Of late I've been reading out-of-genre, Murakami's KAFKA ON THE SHORE, Hoffman's THE ICE QUEEN, Murphy's THE TRUE STORY OF HANSEL & GRETEL, and the like.
Oh, hell, too many books....

I enjoy your work, which is, I think, the highest praise a reader can give a writer. Thanks!

Vince Singleton
& Cornbread the cat
Johnson City, Tennessee
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Tonya Jarrett
Posted on Saturday, November 17, 2007 - 07:05 pm:   

Dear Elizabeth,

I haven't been by here in some time but your work is never far from my mind. Thank goodness I got an update from Amazon today with book picks for me, and there was Generation Loss. I go in and out of being able to buy books rather than get them from the library but I jumped and bought it to take with me on an upcoming vacation.

I tried to order your Bride of Frankenstein novel from them, new, and it kept getting pushed back and back until finally they told me in an email it was no longer available. Sure would like to know the story behind that since it sounded like a fascinating read.

Next up for me will be your Saffron and Brimstone.

Hope you're doing well,

Tonya
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Elizabeth Hand
Posted on Monday, November 19, 2007 - 04:40 am:   

Hi everyone,

Thanks for all the good vibes, I've been in need of them as I was wicked stalled on a book but finally broke through about two weeks ago and can now rejoin the ranks of the living. Pandora's Bride IS alive (that wasn't the stalled book) and should be out any day now -- it got pushed back but I have two copies in hand so can testify it exists.

One caveat with that book: I spent a week revising it, for style not content, but for various reasons (rescheduling, software incompatiblity) the final edit did NOT make it into print. It's readable, but it's not as clean as it should be. I'm a perfectionist and will go over something endlessly, so this is a bit frustrating. But the book is fun and I'm happy it's finally out there in the world.

I love that GenLoss reminded you of Marianne Faithfull's bio! I haven't read that, but I definitely will -- I LOVE rock and roll bios/memoirs. I just finished All Over But The Shouting, an oral history of the Replacements, and am reading Laurie Lindeen's memoir Petal Pusher, about her years with her band, Zuzu's Petals (she's also married to Paul Westerberg of the 'Mats). Lindeen has an MFA in creative writing and was mentored by Patricia Hampl. It's a lovely book that nails a certain kind of 20th century life and experience. I highly recommend it.

I've also been remiss in posting on my group blog at LiveJournal (the Inferior 4) so will try to get back to that soon too. In the meantime, Happy Thanksgiving to all!
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Tonya Jarrett
Posted on Thursday, December 13, 2007 - 10:10 pm:   

I don't know all the fancy words and meanings behind what writers do with their own prose style, but I believe this novel might be called "stripped bare." I finished the book a few days ago and have had to let it sit awhile with me. Never have I read, at least that I can remember, a tale so grim and unrelenting in terms of a protagonist I sort of loathed, while at the same time, I rooted for. And every time Cass screwed up again or did something unethical or dishonest, that cycle of loathing and rooting for would repeat. Well, all art is a journey and this book took me someplace wild, weird and different. And touching.

The imagery evoked is not lush like Waking the Moon, but it has its own elegant beauty within the harsh landscape of nature, and human being.

This is why I read your work, Elizabeth. Because I love not only the places it takes me but how it makes me examine my own humanity.
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Elizabeth Hand
Posted on Friday, December 14, 2007 - 04:28 am:   

Thank you, Tonya. It was such a terrible, difficult book to write, in part because the prose style was (delberately) so different from what I've used before, and also because much of the work plumbed into the darker parts of my own experience. I found in writing it that all that lush prose has always acted as a sort of buffer or safety net for me — it's so much easier to write abot terrible things when one attaches some sort of beauty to them, even if it's only pretty words.

Also, if it doesn't sound too pretentious, I wanted to present Cass as a sort of moral argument. I know how trite it is in fiction (especially American fiction) to have a character ultimately redeem him or herself, and of course life doesn't operate so handily — we have moments of redemption, which are fleeting, and we have to learn to recognize them when they appear. It was really important to me that Cass genuinely feels (and acts) damned, and that the reader feels complicit in her experience. And I hope able to share in the small victory she achieves at the end, of simply being able to say "Yes" to rejoining the human race, however briefly, for a drink on a cold winter night.

Thanks again --

Liz

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