New-Old Projects

4 December 2001

Well, yesterday was a good rejection day. I was starting to miss them, but yesterday I got three. It was good, though, because one of them had been out for awhile (since July) and one of them fit the theme of an anthology I didn't know existed until after I'd submitted it to a magazine instead. And the third was from GVG at F&SF, and I'd sent it out over a week ago, so I expected it.

Mark and I went to see the Harry Potter movie last night with his coworkers. Nice people. The movie was entertaining enough, but the acting...oy. There were some good spots -- Robbie Coltrane as Hagrid was really, really nice. But some of the others -- I can't believe people liked Alan Rickman as Snape. I didn't find him remotely creepy. At all. I found him laughable. Every time he started making faces at the camera, I just wanted to laugh hysterically. (It's a wonder Mark takes me out in public at all.) His face kept twitching! Twitch, twitch, ooh, I'm scary, twitch. He wasn't scary. He was a Goth, and everybody knows Goths aren't scary. As far as the laugh factor, they might as well have had Tim Curry play the role -- and when I thought of that, I wanted to giggle further, picturing the shocking revelations of the next book a la Rocky Horror. Harry Potter and the Picture Show. Right. If they'd wanted scary, they should have cast someone like John Malkovich and let that tenor creep right up your spine every time the guy said, "Mr. Potter."

Maybe they think that's a more grown-up kind of scary. But I know I would have run screaming from Malkovich as a kid, and while I wouldn't have made the Tim Curry leap as a kid, I still think Alan Rickman would have amused me.

Also, some of the things that made little sense in the book were less padded in the movie, and their lack of sense showed up. For example, why does Hermione tell a lie in the bathroom (after the troll has smashed things up) when the truth will suffice? Nobody would have gotten in trouble if they said they'd noticed she was in the bathroom and they went to warn her. I mean, its function in the book and movie was to show that Hermione Was Cool After All, but it just showed me that she lied gratuitously and the boys were too dumb to notice that she was behaving rather crazily. Bleah.

And why would a troll head straight for the ladies' room anyway? Well, besides the obvious reason.

The world is very, very lucky I was not keeping an online journal when Episode I came out. Oh, and Lord a'mighty, we saw a trailer for Episode II. (Does anyone else think it's a bad sign that they are now just going by episodes? Because their titles suck? Oh my.) Darth Vader as whiny teenager. Oh, no, I'm wrong, excuse me: Darth Vader as horny, whiny teenager. Fabulous. "It's all Obi Wan's fault, wahhhhh!" There are ways to do this that make Vader's fall something to mourn. It doesn't look like they're doing them, though. I fear this movie. I really do. My kids are going to associate Star Wars with suckage. They are. There's no help for it -- we can't shelter them from these new things forever.

I want Irvin Kershner back, is what.

You know what else I want? Stories! Yep, stories from you all. Or your friends who write cool stories. Or your enemies who write cool stories -- I don't really care, as long as I get the stories. Clear back, I mentioned that I was working on a project with Timprov. Well, he had some Speculon stuff he wanted to finish up, and then I got sick, and then I stayed sick, and one thing just led to another, and the project got delayed. But not killed! Oh, no, definitely not killed.

So. Why I Hate Aliens, an e-book anthology from the new Bay Laurel E-Books, is scheduled to come out in the spring. There will be other e-books coming out from Bay Laurel, too, but those are Timprov's and other people's projects, not mine. Write me stories of humor or xenophobia. Or send me reprints of stories you've already published on that theme. The guidelines are available. The deadline is the first of February. Write.

(I'd imagine most of you will not have time to work on stories in December. But, you know, if you do, I'll have more time to read and consider them early, most likely. If other people are like me in their anthology submission habits.)

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