Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Abide With Me (Olympics opening ceremony, 2012)

I've not been watching the Olympics the last few days because I'm speaking at a high school camp and thus, no television. What I have been watching is everyone complaining about NBC and their coverage.

I was, however, shocked to hear that NBC cut the following (quite moving) song and performance in tribute to those "who are not able to be with us" at the Olympics this year. I thought both the hymn and the performance were beautiful.

What did NBC air instead of this? An interview between Ryan Seacrest and Michael Phelps. Because "that's what Americans want." I'm sorry, NBC, but maybe you're out of touch with what we want.

My kids teaching kittens to go down the slide

We recently got three kittens. The kids named them Blizzard (he looked white when we first got him, but he's quickly turning orange), Raven (because you should always name at least one of your cats after a bird) and Sweetie (because a three year old was involved in the naming).

The kids are pretty dedicated to the idea that their kittens should be trained. So, using a regimen largely involving kitty treats and sticks, the kids have taught their kittens to climb the stairs of the slides in our back yard and then slide down.

See for yourself:

The cats do this gladly, and will even wait in line on the ladder (at least for a minute or so). I have more videos to share with you, but I'm having trouble getting them off my phone and onto the computer. I'll try to put them up later this week!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Banksy Vs. The London Olympics

If you've been around here for a while you know that I'm a fan of the renowned street artist Banksy.

Banksy has recently hit the streets of London, making some art for the London Olympics. The only problem is that the London Olympics has pronounced that all graffiti will be done away with before the games.

You can see more of Banksy's work here.

But don't worry, if London paints over Banksy's street art, we'll still have the London games mascots:

Okay, the mascots are weird. But they've also shown support of graffiti art in the past.

Anyway. If you see some Banksy about to be painted over, go ahead and chip it off the wall and send it to me.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Dreams: Monster vs. Robot

I had a dream last night that there was an entire industry built around this one very successful concept of giant robots and monsters fighting each other. But instead of being like the (current) Japanese stories in which this is a sort of science fiction/action concept, these were all written as tragedies. Everyone would weep when the monster was beaten back into the sea by the giant robot, or if the robot was defeated, it would create a cultural talking point about the sadness that these robots and monsters must keep fighting one another. They had movies, comics and novels about these emotionally-laden battles.

And then my kid woke me up to make some cereal for her. And here I am.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New Short Story Coming this Fall!

I sold a short story last week to an upcoming anthology called Unidentified Funny Objects! UFO is a collection of humorous science fiction and fantasy releasing this October or November.

I'm pretty excited about this story and the collection, which you can see has a story by Mike Resnick in it! Neat!

My story is called "The Working Stiff"and it's about a down-on-his-luck vampire, his back-talking thrall and the town that hires them to take care of their supernatural pest problem.

It's My Birthday!

And since it's my birthday I can do whatever I want. It's a rule in our family. A rule which I instated one year... ON MY BIRTHDAY.

What I want to do this year is make this announcement about my next book.

What's that, you say? You didn't know I had another book coming out?

Yeah, well, that's why I'm announcing it of course! I haven't been talking about it much, but I've been working with my publisher, editing the book and generally getting ready. It comes out this Fall, probably in early September. I'll be giving you more details (publisher name, exact release date, etc.) in the near future.

If you're a long time minion here at BHR you've already heard me talk about it... it's a fantasy novel I wrote for my kids called The Sword of Six Worlds and here's the cover:

In any case, if all goes well and we hit certain sales numbers, there will be sequels. So GET READY! Because it's my birthday and I say so!

Updates to come (eventually) at SIXWORLDS.COM!

Monday, July 16, 2012

My article in Relevant Magazine

It's been uncharacteristically quiet around here, but that doesn't mean I haven't been writing (wait, was that too many negatives in one sentence?).

In fact, if you're wishing you had a little something to read from yours truly, check out this month's issue of Relevant Magazine. I was glad to see the cover article was about the Avett Brothers, a band I enjoy and listen to regularly, and inside (in fact right next to my own article!) was an article about Of Monsters and Men. Nice!

You can see the article online as well right about here (half of it's behind the subscription wall).

Anyway, I have a few other writing announcements coming out this week... keep your eyes peeled (ew, gross) for further announcements.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

STINT team leaders training

Starting tonight, people start trickling into town for our STINT team leader's training. STINT is the international intern program for Cru, the organization I work for!

It's pretty cool that we get to host it here in Portland this year. Looking forward to a fun time!

Saturday, July 07, 2012

The Higgs Boson explained

You probably heard this week that the "Higgs boson" has been all-but-proven to exist, which is pretty cool. Unless you have no idea what that means. In which case it's completely shrug-worthy. I thought a few of you out there might enjoy seeing this video done a while back, which explains the Higgs boson in a fun, accessible way. Enjoy!

The Higgs Boson Explained from PHD Comics on Vimeo.

Friday, July 06, 2012

Teaching your kids what is funny

Last week my 2 year old came up, punched me in the crotch and shouted, "KNOCK KNOCK!"

I can see that she gets her sense of humor from her father.

Ha ha ha! Whoooo is there?

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

NOT a pattern in the leaves

My almost-three-year-old was falling asleep in bed the other night and asked me to come lay beside her, which I did. It was dusk, and the maple tree outside her window nearly completely fills the view. She looked out the window and said quietly, "There's a ghost out there."

I didn't say anything, and she said it again. "I can see its eyes." She looked at me for a minute, then back out the window. "It's wearing glasses."

I said, "It's probably just a pattern in the leaves."

She said, "It's not a pattern in the leaves! I can see its eyes! I can see its glasses!"

"Do you want me to close the shades?"


Apparently it wasn't scary. I'm not sure what she was talking about. But she rolled over and said under her breath, "NOT a pattern in the leaves."