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Kosmopolis 2004

As I was searching for a text of the Keynote Address I gave at the 2004 Kosmopolis Literary Festival in Barcelona, Spain, I found these photos on my web site.  Marcial Souto, an award-winning scholar and translator, introduced me and moderated post-talk questions.  

Kosmopolis was a large, exciting literary event with many vectors–among them a great exhibit about Julio Cortazar, an exhibit of paintings by Gao Xingjian, the author of Soul Mountain, and an exhibit about war at which I saw, for the first time, an Enigma Machine. 

Strangely chilling to think about all of the history that flowed from this encription device, including Turing’s breakthrough and his subsequent contribution to the field of artificial intelligence. 

I was honored to be invited to give the keynote address, which was about the possibilities of nanotechnology and the ways in which it links or may, in the future, link the sciences, engineering, and the arts.    Text, Goonan’s Keynote Address at Kosmopolis, Barcelona 2004 

 

 

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October 1, 2011   No Comments

Kathleen Goonan at the Center For Fiction NYC October 3rd

Utopia/Dystopia
Monday October 3, 2011
7:00 pm
The Center for Ficton / 17 E. 47th Street
FREE / RSVP http://centerforfiction.org/calendar/big-read-utopiadystopia/ or call (212) 755-6710

This panel will explore the horrific and idyllic worlds that science fiction writers create in their works. Writers Anna North, Charles Yu, and Kathleen Ann Goonan with moderator DongWon Song will discuss the universes of science and slipstream fiction. The event kicks off The Center for Fiction’s month-long tribute to Science Fiction and Fantasy.

Anna North was born in Williamsburg, Virginia and grew up in Los Angeles. She graduated from the Iowa Writers Workshop in 2009, having received a Teaching-Writing Fellowship and a Michener/Copernicus Society Fellowship. Her fiction has appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, where it was nominated for a National Magazine Award. Her nonfiction has appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle and on Jezebel, where she is a staff writer. She lives in Brooklyn. See Anna North with her editor Reagan Arthur in an event last spring here at The Center for Fiction.

Charles Yu received the National Book Foundation’s 5 Under 35 Award for his story collection Third Class Superhero. His first novel, How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe, was a New York Times Notable Book, and named one of the best books of the year by Time Magazine. His work has been published in the Harvard Review, The Gettysburg Review, Playboy, and The New York Times Book Review, among other places. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Michelle, and their two children.

Kathleen Ann Goonan has been at the vanguard of literary science fiction since the publication of her New York Times Notable Book Queen City Jazz in 1994, garnering starred reviews in all major review journals, such as Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, and Booklist, for each of her six novels. A literary stylist, she melds cutting-edge science with strong characterization, history, jazz, and what PW described as “ . . . the work of a powerful imagination with a superior command of language.” Her work has been the subject of articles as widely varied as Scientific American’s “Shamans of the Small” in their special Nanotechnology issue and scholarly papers in literary journals, and has been studied at UCR, MIT, RIT, and other universities. Goonan has been invited to speak at international literary festivals, such as Kosmopolis in Barcelona and Utopioles in Nantes, government think tanks, and in university settings. Her novels have been finalists for the Arthur C. Clarke Award, BSFA, and Nebula Awards. In War Times won the Campbell Award for Best Science Fiction Novel of 2007 and was also the American Library Association’s choice of Best Science Fiction Novel of the year. She is presently a Visiting Professor at Georgia Institute of Technology, where she teaches Creative Writing, Literature, and Science, Technology and Ideology.

DongWon Song is an editor with Hachette’s science fiction and fantasy imprint, Orbit.

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September 29, 2011   No Comments

Princess Ka’iulani, Surfer

Mindi Reid has published a marvelous, well-researched article in Pacific Longboarder Magazine titled “Child of the Sea–The Untold Story of Hawai’i’s Surfing Princess.”  Reid opens her piece with a visit to the Bishop Museum, where Ka’iulani’s surfboard is housed and kept in storage.  When it is unwrapped:  “. . . a sudden glow of koa wood.”  “Child of the Sea” chronicles Ka’iulani’s life in Hawai’i, Europe, and then Hawai’i, where she died at age 23 after the illegal annexation of the Kingdom of Hawai’i.  She was an avid surfer and surf-canoe rider, and is now being featured in documentaries about the history of surfing as well as in Reid’s beautifully written piece. 

I would like to post the article in full, but right now the only way you can read it, and see some rare historic photos, is to read the article in Pacific Longboarder Magazine.  

She must have surfed formidable waves, because she used a specialized type of surfboard used for the most powerful and dangerous types of waves. 

To see Ka’iulani’s surfboard, and to learn more about her history, the history of surfing and Hawai’i, and how this surfboard contributes to modern surfing, go to Legendary Surfers, by Malcolm Gault-Williams, and then to The Kaiulani Board–Princess Kaiulani and her Alaia Surfboard.  In this section, the author says

‘According to Abraham Fornander (1812-1887) in Hawaiian Folk Lore, the alaia averaged 9 feet long. It was best suited for kakaha, “a curling wave, terrible, death dealing.” That is, a wave that broke quickly and had a hollow curl section to it.”

I’ve been in those death-dealing waves–not as a surfer, but as a child at an International Surfing Championship at Makaha in 1961, when I was caught in one.  Their force is terrifying, and those who surf these waves are utterly daring. 

 

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September 28, 2011   No Comments

A Fleeting Bouquet

       Last days of summer:  hydrangea and zinnea.

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September 18, 2011   No Comments

This Shared Dream Washington Post Book World Review, Print Version

 The cover of This Shared Dream on the front page of the Style section (now home to Book World).   So far, I had only seen the electronic version, so this is pretty cool.  The Dirda review, inside, takes up most of the page and includes photographs of Dunbar High School and the Uptown Theater, which are in the novel. 

This is the entire print review, including photos. TSDWashPostDierda8-11-11small

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September 10, 2011   No Comments

Kathleen Goonan interviewed by Mike Zipser for Fast Forward

This morning I went to Arlington, where Mike Zipser interviewed me for Fast Forward, a local television show. 

As usual, Mike asked perfect questions, and I had a great time. 

Afterwards, he asked my dad, Tom Goonan, about the Squanch Club, which is in This Shared Dream .  He wrote the parts of the book that are used as Sam Dance’s diaries; the Squanch Club was for jazz appreciation, and my dad and his pals were teenagers pooling their money for the latest by Duke Ellington or Wingy Manone or Freddy Slack or Charlie Barnett or Bud Freeman or Larry Clinton or the Dorsey Brothers or Billy Butterfield (some musicians that came to him mind as I am writing this post. 

It was a lovely morning!  Thanks to the crew for coming in on a holiday weekend.

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September 3, 2011   No Comments

This Shared Dream Locus review by Russell Letson posted in full

You can now read the full text of Russell Letson’s wonderful Locus review  of THIS SHARED DREAM online.   A bit of it: 

(Halcyon House) is untidy but rich, crammed with books and music, with an attic full of memories and a set of secret doors and passages that only Sam and Bette know about. I want to live there. The book is generous and hopeful in the face of all the evidence of humankind’s capacity for folly, tribalism, violence, destruction, and general badassery, and I would like to live there, too.

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September 1, 2011   No Comments

Arthur C. Clarke Award Finalist THE BONES OF TIME Now In Ebook!

The Bones of TImeAvailable for Kindle, and soon for IPad and Nook. 

On the cover, a picture of Princess Ka’iulani, Hawaii’s last Princess.   Her epic life and tragic early death was the subject of a recent movie, PRINCESS KAIULANI, which I critiqued in an earlier post.   THE BONES OF TIME was my second novel, and was based on my Nebula-award preliminary nominee novella, “Kamehameha’s Bones.” 

When doing research for this novel, I visited the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, and was able to read many of Ka’iulani’s original letters.  This was a fascinating and moving experience. 

I hope that this novel will find new readers with this edition.

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August 24, 2011   No Comments

Locus Podcast Up

Karen Burnham, Gary Wolfe, Eileen Gunn and I discuss the intricacies of World War II, science fiction, Mark Twain, and Maria Montessori in a Locus Podcast recorded in a hotel room at the Reno Worldcon.  How are these related?  Go to http://t.co/v31yZrp to find out.  Another link:  http://tiny.cc/v0262.  Big fun!

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August 23, 2011   No Comments

Michael Dirda Reviews THIS SHARED DREAM in the Washington Post

Michael Dirda has reviewed THIS SHARED DREAM for The Washington Post.

It’s a marvelous review.

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August 22, 2011   No Comments