jump to navigation

Tarnished Knight essay and excerpt October 3, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.

Are up on the official Penguin website at http://us.penguingroup.com/static/pages/specialinterests/scifi/2012/the_lost_stars_essay.html

All in your head October 2, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.
add a comment

There’s an official tendency to label unexplained medical problems as being psychological even though some very serious problems are chronically under-diagnosed.  This story talks about some of those problems.   This isn’t anything controversial.  It’s mainstream, proven science.  But it illustrates how the patient can be blamed for a real, physical ailment and important treatment delayed.  http://www.livingwithout.com/issues/1_11/untreated_gluten_sensitivity-1800-1.html?ET=livingwithout:p76216:7382a:&st=pmail&s=P_TuesdayTip100212&t=B_TL_P

The blood test for gluten allergy reactions is not expensive, but despite the prevelance of gluten allergies in the population and medical estimates that it may be the most under-diagnosed ailment in the US, doctors are often amazingly reluctant to order the blood test or consider the allergy as a possible cause of problems.  The incidence of all auto-immune diseases has been rising dramatically (again, official figures), so if you have problems that doctors can’t explain, look into the possibility that an allergy or sensitivity might be involved.  It can’t hurt and it might help.

Knight is coming, and so is the sequel October 2, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.

The first Lost Stars book, Tarnished Knight, comes out tomorrow.  I think people will really like this different view of the Lost Fleet universe.  I’d already finished the next Lost Fleet book (Guardian, which will be out next May), and had been working on the sequel to Tarnished Knight.  I just finished my first pass on the manuscript for that sequel (working title Rogue Queen, but that may well change).  Now, I think I’ll rest a little.  And clean out the garage.

Getting to do something new October 1, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.
add a comment

One of the things I really like about the Lost Stars series (first book Tarnished Knight due out this week) is that it lets me do things I haven’t been able to do in the Lost Fleet books because of the scale of action and the characters.  In the sequel to Tarnished Knight I just worked out a big scene with protecting a convoy, figuring out how to do that in space, but interwoven with the action is the relationship between an older, experienced Alliance captain and a younger, quickly promoted Kommodor in Midway’s service.  The two women, very recently enemies, have to work together and share their skills in order to get through the crisis safely.  I really enjoyed exploring that relationship and figuring out how it would develop under that kind of stress.

Another 100,000 words September 27, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.
1 comment so far

Just passed 100,000 words on Rogue Queen (the sequel to Tarnished Knight, which comes out next week).  Yes, I have to write sequels before the previous books even hit the shelves (or the e-readers).  In this case that was particularly useful because I’m also making minor changes to Guardian (the sequel to Invincible) and there’s a point where the plots of Guardian and Rogue Queen intersect.  Now I can be sure the stories are one hundred percent consistent, and that the stuff happening when the characters and ships from the two series meet works out smoothly.  (Or, as smoothly as perilous things can happen to those guys.  I do make things hard for them all.)

First review in for Tarnished Knight (and it’s a good one) September 22, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.
add a comment

Kirkus gives a really good review for Tarnished Knight – http://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/jack-campbell/tarnished-knight/#review

An incredibly ugly lie September 19, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.

I know emotions run high in politics these days, and people can debate the truth of various topics.  But I have just seen the most appalling, cynical and disgusting lie being sent around the internet by people who apparently think nothing of trying to use the deaths of Americans to score political points.  You may have heard what happened after the attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya – other Libyans, searching through the damaged embassy, found an American.  They didn’t know who he was, but they saw he was still alive though badly hurt by smoke inhalation.  There’s a video of what happened, the searchers getting the American out of the building, telling the crowd he was still alive (which was greeted with cheers and cries of God is Great), then carrying him to a car and rushing him to a hospital.  Unfortunately, it was too late to save Ambassador Stevens.  Now, some people are circulating on the internet a couple of pictures from that event and claiming they show “Our US Ambassador to Libya being dragged through the streets before being murdered.”  Those who don’t know the truth are resending the item.  The individuals who originated this item know it was a lie, know that they are stirring up hate over an act of compassion, but apparently do not care.  All they care about is stoking the fires of discord, even over the body of the US Ambassador who died doing his duty for this country.  All I can think of is words spoken decades ago  – “Have you no sense of decency…?  At long last, have you left no sense of deceny?”

Capclave September 15, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.

My next convention will be 12-14 October at Capclave in Gaithersburg, Maryland.  Hope to see you there.  My draft schedule is –

7PM Friday – Reading

8PM Friday – Panel: Princess of Mars’ 100 Year Reign

10AM Saturday – Panel: Alternate Alternate History

5PM Saturday – Panel: FTL What the Hell

10PM Saturday – Panel: They Can’t Do That!

11AM Sunday – Panel: WWI Comeback

2PM Sunday – Panel: The Infinite Series

My Worldcon schedule August 21, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.

I’ll be in Chicago, IL from 30 August to 3 September for this year’s World SF and Fantasy Convention.  I’m looking forward to seeing everyone else who will be there.  My schedule is –

Thursday 30 August 3PM – Panel: The Alien as Metaphor

Thursday 30 August 5PM – Reading

Friday, 31 August 3PM – Panel: Military SF – Reality versus Writing

Friday, 31 August 8PM – Literary Beer

Saturday, 1 September 3PM – Panel: Sometimes Even Hollywood Gets It Right

Sunday, 2 September 1:30PM – Autographing

Sunday, 2 September 6PM – Military Fantasy and Science Fiction

Monday, 3 September 12PM – Military Members on Military SF

Value and Labor August 3, 2012

Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.

Here in the US we’ve been downplaying the importance and value of labor for a while now.  We’ll pay four bucks for a cup of coffee (or eight bucks if it is a grande triple vanilla frappe) but heaven forbid the person taking the order or making the coffee be paid too much.  The universal solution to our problems is to reduce the work force, reduce wages, reduce benefits.  Except for the very top tier, who need to be motivated by millions in bonuses even if their company is tanking because of their decisions.  I think that’s sad, and not purely for economic reasons.  The middle class keeps getting squeezed because it’s easy to cut their wages and benefits, but along with income they are losing respect.  I personally believe that anyone who does their job to the best of their ability deserves respect, not a look down the nose because their job involves manual labor or repetitive work or just isn’t upper tier.  They also deserve to be paid a reasonable wage.  That’s in everyone’s best interest.  Almost a hundred years ago now, Henry Ford doubled the wages of his assembly line workers.  The Wall Street Journal howled that those were “obscene” wages, but Ford prospered mightily because his workers could now afford to buy the cars they built.  He sold a lot more cars.  By contrast, we’ve been following the Walmart model for a while.  Drive down wages so you can drive down prices.  But eventually you reach the point where wages are low enough that people can’t afford to shop at Walmart, either (which is why Walmart is facing a real challenge from Dollar General and similar retailers).  Boosting wages too high is a mistake, but so is cutting them too low.  As in everything else, there has to be balance.  And respect for those who do their jobs well, no matter what that job is.