I’m delighted to have written a piece about Ghost Type Erika on Sea Lion Press. Enjoy.
Tag: Sea Lion Press
New Sea Lion Press post: Packers Win!
I have a new post out on Sea Lion Press. Very fun to write, its subject is the… Green Bay Packers.
The debut published work of Sea Lion Press author Charles E. P. Murphy, Events tells the story of alternate British prime ministers as they deal with the economy, other familiar problems, and, uh, alien invasions. The book is told in a deadpan pseudo-historical fashion, complete with footnotes that reference made-up history books. Anyone who knows internet alternate history will see the style being poked at instantly.
And this is the novella’s biggest issue: You need to be in an extremely small, insular community to really appreciate it. Otherwise, the obvious joke will just get repeated. “Oh, this prime minister dealt with an alien attack and then (insert mundane historical political problem here). And then this prime minister did (___)….” Even though it’s very short, the gag wears out its welcome by the third alien invasion.
But if you do know internet alternate history, the joke becomes better. A genre with a frequent rivet-counting “how many B-52s can dance on the head of a pin” obesssion and which cares absolutely nothing for conventional plot or characters gets skewered by Murphy treating made-up nonsense as if it was a meticulously researched order of battle for 1863/1942/1985.
Of course, the book also gets soured a bit by Poe’s Law (there is no parody of something that cannot be equaled in extremes by a sincere expression of the same). Since many internet alternate history timelines often portray events rivaling flying saucer wars in terms of divergence unironically, this can feel like just a handwaved in timeline that happens to be tongue in cheek. And (thankfully) without wikiboxes.
This is a first novel, so I can forgive its flaws. But it’s still made by and for those who follow a specific niche.
SLP Panel: What Is Plausibility
I’m delighted to say that I not only participated in the latest Sea Lion Press discussion panel on the topic of plausibility, I actually chaired it. See the final discussion here.
All the Myriad Ways on SLP
Once again I participated in a panel discussion for Sea Lion Press, this time on whether or not alternate history is “stagnant”? The first part has now been posted.
New SLP Post: The 21st Century Red Army That Never Was
I have a new post on Sea Lion Press about the GENFORCE: Mobile Forces.
The Strangest Analysis on Sea Lion Press
I have a new post on the SLP blog about a time when one of the sharpest and most respected analysts used a conflict setup that could have been straight from a bad 1990s technothriller.
Guns and Butter Part 2 Up
The second and last part of the Sea Lion Press discussion is now up.
Sea Lion Press Panel Discussion: Guns and Butter
I had the great experience of participating in a Sea Lion Press discussion on power, war, and violence in alternate history. The first part has been posted here.
AlloAmericana: Myths and Legends From Other Americas
Alexander Wallace’s edited anthology of the folklore from different Americas is a treat. From Native American legends adopted by settlers to the West Coast from 17th century Japan to D. B. Cooper, this takes the reader through many a myth and legend. The collection of authors each brings something distinct and good to the table.
If I have any critiques, it’s that the short story collection format is only useful for a brief snapshot of a world. But that’s not the fault of the editors or authors, and some times this is all you need. I believe this is my favorite Sea Lion Press anthology to date.