Fusebox 2017

Part of the set of  Vine of the Dead.

Part of the set of Vine of the Dead.

The Fusebox Festival blows up Austin every April - one of my favorite times of year, five days crammed with the world's best and weirdest theater, dance, visual art, and music.

I wrote some stuff:

"Slaves to a System," about Antony Hamilton and Alisdair Macindoe's extraordinary dance piece Meeting.

"A Comic, Joyful, Poignant Lear," about David Neumann's delightful, heartbreaking I Understand Everything Better.

"A Hand Touching the Screen Between Life and Death" about Jim Findlay's slow, powerful Vine of the Dead, 11 Ritual Gestures

A final piece called "Fusebox Rhymes" about the call and response, the fugue of repeated motifs and techniques the festival always finds.


blog tour of RADIANT ROAD blogging madness blogs! bloggity!

Maybe I am JUST NOT a blogger, is that a possibility? Why can't I keep up here? 

Anyway THIS post is really just going to be a constantly-updated list of kindly sites hosting my The Radiant Road blog-tour blogs. Updated as they happen! So you can't say I'm not blogging! SHUT UP! STOP SAYING THAT!

Okay here goes:



  • At Muggle.net: Me on the longggg and twisty road to publication for this crazy book. They posted a lovely and thoughtful review of the book as well.
  • At Winter Haven Books: An amusing (well: to us!) game of "Would You Rather?" Would I rather have dinner with a werewolf or a vampire? You're probably wrong. 
  • At WordSpelunking (motto: "books and cupcakes" -- I can fully support that mission statement): A list of my ten favorite things as illustrated by gifs! I got to use my favorite gif, which is the one up there. WordSpelunking also posted a very generous review of The Radiant Road.
  • At Dark Faerie Tales: a book soundtrack for The Radiant Road--music I listened to while I was writing to put me in that right (or write) place. They also have a smart and lovely review  up.
  • At YABibliophile: An interview I quite enjoyed!
  • At Alexa Loves Books: My one or two (okay maybe five or six) biggest inspirations as a writer and how they shaped The Radiant Road.
  • At the Penguin Teen Tumblr: A bunch of amusing questions, including "If you could spend one year on a deserted island with one character from literature, who would you choose?" to which I have a weird answer.
  • At Live to Read: A playlist of songs my main character Clare might listen to.
  • At BookPage: An interview in which Cat Acree asked some awfully perceptive questions about the book.
  • At Gone Pecan: 25 Random Things About me. For some reason I LOVED doing this. You won't BELIEVE #13.
  • At Across the Words: A very cool interview with photos of Irish places that inspired me.

These next aren't strictly part of the blog tour but happened around the same time:

  • At WordMothers: A nice interview about my book, process, writing room, what inspires me.
  • At The Page 69 Test: I did a brief (and fun) analysis of page 69 of The Radiant Road and how it relates to the rest of the book. Among other things, it turned out to be the only page where the book title appears!
  • At The Writing Barn, an Austin TREASURE, I sing the praises of the Barn and also a song of myself.

Spring Mishmash

I have so many projects, small and large, going on right now. It's splendid, but I keep intending to come back here and Comment Wisely on some current topic but you know what? Then I don't.

Also: spring is lovely in Austin but, as ever: ahhhhCHOO.

So this will be the typical listy mishmash of stuff, sorry. 

First off, I wrote a Cabinet story this month inspired by this Ralph Meatyard photo.

(Terrifying) photo by  Ralph Meatyard .

(Terrifying) photo by Ralph Meatyard.

I had also just come from visiting my father, where he lives in a cabin out in the woods, and that may have influenced this piece as well, which is more eerie and autumnal than EEK SCREAM FRIGHT.  

Anyway! Also the play I'm in here in Austin, The Christians, is still playing through March 28. We've been selling out, and it's a lovely, thoughtful show, about how we make walls and shields and moats out of our beliefs so that we don't have to open ourselves to other people. If you're around, come see one of the last three shows.

Also, for the Fusebox Festival's 100 Year Flood piece,  I've written and recorded a very short, odd little piece inspired by this site:

This is on the Lady Bird Lake hike & bike trail in Austin, on the north side of the river just west of the Lamar pedestrian bridge.

This is on the Lady Bird Lake hike & bike trail in Austin, on the north side of the river just west of the Lamar pedestrian bridge.

Several other excellent local writers also did pieces, which you can (beginning April 1) download and listen to in that spot, if you like.

I am also now one of the Yellow Bird Editors and am really enjoying the work, so if you're a writer interested in critique or editing services, YB is the place. I recently wrote a blog for them about banishing stick-figure writing (and getting readers to feel your words in their bones) by using concrete sensory details. A lot of it I kyped from a workshop I taught last month for the Writer's League of Texas.

As usual I'll be blogging again for the Fusebox Festival (April 1-12)--it is absolutely one of Austin's Best Things, much more exciting than SXSW. Don't miss it.


writing seeds: tiny ideas you can't see inside

I have a guest blog up at the Enchanted Inkpot today about the importance of keeping things teeeeeny tiny at the beginning of a writing project. Maybe throughout a writing project, to tell the truth. 


Happy seedlings don't know they were planted too late (or don't know YET).

Happy seedlings don't know they were planted too late (or don't know YET).

It's called "Tiny Shells, Each With a Wilderness Inside" (which I immodestly feel is a splendid blog title--I should hire out!). Now that blog is written and posted I'm wishing I'd leaned more not just on the tininess of the ideas, but also their initial opacity. It feels like both are important. 

Thus I mix up my two current obsessions, writing and beginning to reclaim our yard.

fusebox wrap-up

Still recovering from the Fusebox art-and-talk marathon. It's given me so much to think about, and I can't wait to dig back into my own writing.

Just for completeness' sake, here are the last four blogs I did responding to various shows in this international hybrid arts festival.

Miriam & Sex Idiot: Excellent if lll-Planned Evening:

From the sublime (Zimbabwean choreographer Nora Chipaumire's extraordinary dance piece) to the sublimely goofy (Bryony Kimmings’ charming one-woman piece about her sexual misadventures) 

A photo from "Wind and Waves" at Zilker Park, part of Johnny Walker's Night Gardener project for Fusebox.

A photo from "Wind and Waves" at Zilker Park, part of Johnny Walker's Night Gardener project for Fusebox.

Watch Me Fall, But Maybe Not Quite Far Enough: Mixed feelings about Action Hero's take on action heroes (were we just a dead house?)

Nothing to Declare: Crossing Borders: The Dictaphone Group's documentary piece about the abandoned Lebanese railway and about crossing borders.

Final Fusebox Four-Show Kaleidoscope: Rudely cramming together Poison Squad, Electric Midwife, Phone Homer, and Zen Songs and Prayers.

delicious delicious fusebox treats

I am still blogging faithlessly but unstoppably for the Fusebox Festival, and holy crap I've experienced some fantastic stuff this year, and written about most of it. The blogs so far:

The downtown alleyway "20 Foot Wide" installation.Forest of Future Pigs: Austin's multi-group collaboration River of Gruel, Pile of Pigs (they give you dried cranberries, pistachios, and lapsang souchong tea! and later miso soup! and later -- well, just see it), plus The Future Show and Motor Vehicle Sundown via the Edinburgh Festival's roguish twin, the Forest Fringe.PIg Pile attendees feted with tea and treats.

Sitting Inside Seven Dreams: Ant Hampton's fascinating three-day "Fantasy Interventions" workshop, about sparking a site-specific flash.


I Self-Flagellate Over Stop Hitting Yourself: in which I wrestle the the Rude Mech's marvelous and worrisome latest.

Deborah Hay: A View from the Security Camera: ergh don't ask, but some gorgeous dance

…oh my GOD I loved the Wellman….: Steve Mellor KILLS the Mac Wellman story Muazzez. (I forgot to send a title with this piece, so my editor took the title from the subject line of the email I sent it in. It is a good summary, I'll say that.

More to come, will post then, just so you don't think I'm being lazy about blogging. PS if you're in Austin, don't be ridiculous, go see some of the Fusebox. It runs through April 28. 

fusebox @ culturebot: Guest by Courtesy

Jenny Larson and Hannah Kenah in Guest by Courtesy.I have a wee piece up at Cuturebot.org about Guest by Courtesy, one of the Austin-based pieces in this year's Fusebox Festival It's a terrific piece of physical, clown-ish comedy about gender and class (with marvelous passages of slowed-down time that they call "durations," in reference to the Anne Bogart's Viewpoints work, which inspired them).

The piece was written by Hannah Kenah and devised in collaboration with Jenny Larson and Salvage Vanguard Theater, and is performed by Larson, Kenah, and Jason Hays. And it's all scored live by Graham Reynolds, what more do you want? This week only at the Scottish Rite theater, 3pm.

PS: My piece includes bonus reference to my youngest brother's pre-school, gender-based arguments for refusing to eat grilled cheese. 

Tolkien hogged all the good ideas

What a horrible faithless blogger I've been. In my defense I was finishing a draft of my second book, and then immediately it was Christmas, and then immediately I had a wretched cold that lingered lovingly for weeks.

But I am awake and alive again! and just posted over on the Enchanted Inkpot about the question of fantasy and originality and why it seems so IMPOSSIBLE, but I think really isn't. Check it out.