James Blaylock

James Paul Blaylock (born September 20, 1950) is an American fantasy author.[1] He is noted for a distinctive, humorous style, as well as being one of the pioneers of the steampunk genre of science fiction. Blaylock has cited Jules Verne, H. G. Wells, Robert Louis Stevenson, Arthur Conan Doyle and Charles Dickens as his inspirations.[2]

He was born in Long Beach, California; studied English at California State University, Fullerton, receiving an M.A. in 1974; and lives in Orange, California, teaching creative writing at Chapman University. He taught at the Orange County School of the arts until 2013. Many of his books are set in Orange County, California, and can more specifically be termed "fabulism" – that is, fantastic things happen in our present-day world, rather than in traditional fantasy, where the setting is often some other world. His works have also been categorized as magic realism.

He and his friends Tim Powers and K. W. Jeter were mentored by Philip K. Dick. Along with Powers, Blaylock invented the poet William Ashbless. Blaylock and Powers have often collaborated with each other on writing stories, including "The Better Boy", "On Pirates", and "The William Ashbless Memorial Cookbook".

Blaylock previously served as director of the Creative Writing Conservatory at the Orange County High School of the Arts until 2013, where Powers has also been Writer in Residence.[3][4]

He has been married to his wife, Viki Blaylock, for more than 40 years. They have two sons, John and Danny.

James P. Blaylock
BornSeptember 20, 1950 (age 68)
Long Beach, California, United States
OccupationWriter
GenreFantasy, Science fiction
Literary movementSteampunk
Website
sybertooth.com/blaylock

Awards

Blaylock's short story "Thirteen Phantasms" won the 1997 World Fantasy Award for best Short Fiction.[5] "Paper Dragons" won the award in 1986.[6]

Novels

The "Balumnia" Trilogy

Whimsical fantasy inspired, according to the author, by Wind in the Willows and The Hobbit.

The "Narbondo" Series

Novels

Sharing the character of villain Ignacio Narbondo; the first is contemporary fantasy set in 1960s California, while the remainder are Steampunk novels set in Victorian England.

Short fiction

  • The Ape-Box Affair (1978)
  • The Idol's Eye (1984)
  • Lord Kelvin's Machine (1985)  – expanded into a novel in 1992
  • Two Views of a Cave Painting (1987)
  • The Hole in Space (2002)
  • The Ebb Tide (2009; a Langdon St. Ives novella)
  • The Affair of the Chalk Cliffs (2011; a Langdon St. Ives novella)
  • The Adventure of the Ring of Stones (2014; a Langdon St. Ives novella)
  • The Here-and-Thereians (2016)
  • Earthbound Things (2016)
  • River's Edge (2017; a Langdon St. Ives novella)

Collections

All short fiction (except for the novelette Lord Kelvin's Machine) and two novels have appeared in two collections by Subterranean Press:

  • The Adventures of Langdon St. Ives (2008)  – Omnibus of Homunculus, Lord Kelvin's Machine, and the stories The Ape-Box Affair, The Idol's Eye, Two Views of a Cave Painting, The Hole in Space.
  • The Further Adventures of Langdon St. Ives (2016)  – Omnibus of The Ebb Tide, The Affair of the Chalk Cliffs, The Adventure of the Ring of Stones, and the new stories The Here-and Thereians and Earthbound Things.

The "Christian" Trilogy

Present-day fantasy using Christian elements, such as the Holy Grail and the silver coins paid to Judas.

  • The Last Coin (1988)
  • The Paper Grail (1991)
  • All The Bells On Earth (1995)

The "Ghosts" Trilogy

Present-day Californian ghost stories.

  • Night Relics (1994)
  • Winter Tides (1997)
  • The Rainy Season (1999)

Others

  • The Complete Twelve Hours of the Night (1986) Joke pamphlet co-written by Tim Powers and published by Cheap Street Press
  • Land of Dreams (1987)
  • The Magic Spectacles (1991) – Young adult book
  • 13 Phantasms (2000) – Short story collection
  • On Pirates (2001) – Short story collection with Tim Powers
  • The Devils in the Details (2003) – Short story collection with Tim Powers
  • In For A Penny (2003) – Short story collection
  • The Knights of the Cornerstone (2008) ISBN 9780441016532
  • The Shadow on the Doorstep (2009) – Short story collection
  • Home Sweet Home and Postscript to Home Sweet Home (2012) – Nonfiction essays included in A Comprehensive Dual Bibliography of James P. Blaylock & Tim Powers ISBN 9780976748601

References

  1. ^ Mark Wingenfeld, "James P. Blaylock" in Bleiler, Richard, Ed. Supernatural Fiction Writers: Contemporary Fantasy and Horror. New York: Thomson/Gale, 2003. (pp. 89-98) ISBN 9780684312507
  2. ^ http://www.thegeekgirlproject.com/2013/05/23/interview-with-james-p-blaylock/
  3. ^ http://www.thegeekgirlproject.com/2013/05/23/interview-with-james-p-blaylock/
  4. ^ "CW Alumni Mixer & Farewell to Jim Blaylock", OCSA Calendar, August 2, 2013, retrieved August 24, 2016
  5. ^ World Fantasy Convention (2010). "Award Winners and Nominees". Archived from the original on 2010-12-01. Retrieved 4 Feb 2011.
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-10-15. Retrieved 2011-03-19.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)

External links

1950 in literature

This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1950.

Blaylock

Blaylock is a family name which may have originated in north-west England and Scotland. People with this family name include:

Anthony Blaylock (born 1965), American football cornerback

Audie Blaylock (born 1962), American bluegrass musician

Bob Blaylock (born 1935), American baseball pitcher

Cheryl Blaylock (born 1953), American puppeteer, actress and comedian

Chet Blaylock (1924–1996), American politician

Derrick Blaylock (born 1979), American football running back

Gary Blaylock (born 1931), American baseball pitcher

James Blaylock (born 1950), American fantasy author

Jeannie Blaylock, American TV news anchor

Josh Blaylock (born 1990), American actor

Len E. Blaylock (1918–2012), American farmer, educator, small businessman and politician

Louis Blaylock (1849–1932), American publisher, civil leader and mayor of Dallas, Texas

Marv Blaylock (1929-1993), American baseball first baseman

Mattie Blaylock (Celia Ann Blaylock) (1850–1888), American prostitute, companion of Wyatt Earp

Mookie Blaylock (born 1967), American basketball player

Ron Blaylock (born 1939), American football coach

Russell Blaylock, American neurosurgeon, author, lecturer, and newsletter editor

Selwyn G. Blaylock (1879–1945), Canadian metallurgist and mining company president

EFileCabinet

eFileCabinet is a company headquartered in Lehi, Utah, selling proprietary software to manage and store documents, content, and records, either on-site or in the cloud.It was founded in 2001 by James Blaylock to serve clients in the accounting industry where Blaylock worked before founding the company. It has since expanded to service many other industries, including construction, banking, healthcare, insurance, law, manufacturing, retail, oil & gas, transportation, and education. As of January 2016, eFileCabinet had over 160,000 users.

Geoff Taylor (illustrator)

Geoff Taylor (born 1946 in Lancaster) is an English fantasy artist.Taylor has illustrated books for famous fantasy writers such as Robert Holdstock, Philip K. Dick, David and Leigh Eddings, Graham Edwards, Raymond E. Feist, Katharine Kerr, J. R. R. Tolkien, Roger Zelazny, and David Zindell. Taylor is also known for his illustrations for Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of The War of the Worlds, and the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness. Since 1991 he has painted some of the rich imagery for Games Workshop and their unique Warhammer World, in addition to painting covers for the Black Library, an offshoot of Games Workshop, and gaming cards for Sabertooth Games.

Homunculus (novel)

Homunculus is a comic science fiction novel by American writer James P. Blaylock. It was published in 1986. It was the second book in Blaylock's loose Steampunk trilogy, following The Digging Leviathan (1984) and preceding Lord Kelvin's Machine (1992). The book was originally published as an Ace paperback by the Berkeley Publishing Group and is included in the Adventures of Langon St. Ives collection.

Blaylock used the book London Labour and the London Poor by Henry Mayhew to research the period setting.

Magnolia High School (California)

Magnolia High School is a public high school in Anaheim, California, United States. It is part of the Anaheim Union High School District. The school is named after the nearest major street to the west.

Morlock Night

Morlock Night is a science fiction novel by American writer K. W. Jeter. It was published in 1979. In a letter to

Locus Magazine in April 1987, Jeter coined the word "steampunk" to describe it and other novels by James Blaylock and Tim Powers.

Morlock Night uses the ideas of H. G. Wells in which the Morlocks of The Time Machine themselves use the device to travel back into the past and menace Victorian London. King Arthur and Merlin appear as England's saviors.

Rainy Season

The rainy season is the time of year when most of a region's average annual rainfall occurs.

Rainy Season may also refer to:

Rainy Season (short story), a 1989 short horror story by Stephen King

The Rainy Season, a 1993 album by Marc Cohn

The Rainy Season, a 1999 novel by James Blaylock

The Digging Leviathan

The Digging Leviathan is a science fiction novel by American writer James P. Blaylock. It was first published in 1984 by Ace Books. The source was Blaylock's first novel The Chinese Circus, which was never finished.

The Disappearing Dwarf

The Disappearing Dwarf (1983) is James Blaylock’s second published book, and the second of the trilogy that started with The Elfin Ship. The characters are mostly drawn from the first book, while the plot revolves around another encounter with the villain Selznak. As before, the world has magic well as pseudo-science, and scientific explanation depends on tongue-in-cheek scientific concepts.

The story is set in a world in which human beings live alongside elves, dwarves, goblins, and other fanciful beings including linkmen, a kind of gnome.

The Elfin Ship

The Elfin Ship (1982) was James Blaylock’s first published book. It is the first of three fantasies by Blaylock about a world peopled by elves, dwarves, goblins, and normal people, as well as a smattering of wizards, witches, and other fanciful beings. The world has magic well as pseudo-science. Scientific explanation depends on such tongue-in-cheek concepts as The Five Standard Shapes, The Three Major Urges, and The Six Links of Bestial Sciences. Many of the characters use hyper-polite, conciliatory language. ("This is pretty wet!" "A good deduction—worthy of a man of science," shouted the Professor.)

The Man in the Moon (novel)

The Man in the Moon was James Blaylock’s first completed novel, however it remained unpublished for decades (having been rewritten and published long before as The Elfin Ship). It was meant to be the first of fantasy series about a world peopled by elves, dwarves, goblins, and normal people, as well as a smattering of wizards, witches, and other fanciful beings.

Written and submitted about 1978, it was rewritten and the second half expanded following the comments accompanying the rejection by editor Lester Del Rey. Del Rey published the reworked version. According to Blaylock, The Man in the Moon was influenced almost entirely by Kenneth Grahame’s Wind in the Willows, along with Mark Twain's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Brownies and the Goblins, and illustrations by Arthur Rakham.

The Stone Giant

The Stone Giant (1989) is James Blaylock’s prequel to his first published book, The Elfin Ship, and thus the end (as of 2008) of a loose trilogy of comic fantasy novels including The Disappearing Dwarf.

Although written some years after the other two novels, the setting once again features a mix of fantasy and steampunk elements but unlike the others, the protagonist in The Stone Giant is the roguish Theophile Escargot. Few of the characters from the previous novels appear but the antagonist is once again the evil sorcerer Selznak (although referred to as "Uncle Abner" in the story.) The book was first published as an Ace paperback by Berkley Books.

The story, a parody of the heroic quest, is set in a world where human beings live alongside elves, goblins, witches, wizards, and other fantastic beings. There Theophile Escargot, a Rip Van Winkle-like malcontent, has series of comic misadventures while attempting both to impress a pretty barmaid and to revenge himself on an evil dwarf who cheated him out of a bag of marbles.

Tim Powers

Timothy Thomas "Tim" Powers (born February 29, 1952) is an American science fiction and fantasy author. Powers has won the World Fantasy Award twice for his critically acclaimed novels Last Call and Declare. His 1987 novel On Stranger Tides served as inspiration for the Monkey Island franchise of video games and was optioned for adaptation into the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean film.

Most of Powers' novels are "secret histories". He uses actual, documented historical events featuring famous people, but shows another view of them in which occult or supernatural factors heavily influence the motivations and actions of the characters.

Typically, Powers strictly adheres to established historical facts. He reads extensively on a given subject, and the plot develops as he notes inconsistencies, gaps and curious data; regarding his 2001 novel Declare, he stated,

I made it an ironclad rule that I could not change or disregard any of the recorded facts, nor rearrange any days of the calendar – and then I tried to figure out what momentous but unrecorded fact could explain them all.

William Ashbless

William Ashbless is a fictional poet, invented by fantasy writers James Blaylock and Tim Powers.

Ashbless was invented by Powers and Blaylock when they were students at Cal State Fullerton in the early 1970s, originally as a reaction to the low quality of the poetry being published in the school magazine. They invented nonsensical free verse poetry and submitted it to the paper in Ashbless's name, where it was reportedly enthusiastically accepted.

The college paper printed poetry, and it was close enough to the ’60s that the poetry was all just horrible free verse about children and flowers and rainbows. So we figured we could write poetry that would sound very portentous but be, in fact, meaningless. … We needed a name for our poet and [came up with] ‘Ashbless.’ The paper published them, so we wrote another lot that was dumber, and they published that. … We said [Ashbless] was hideously deformed and couldn’t attend any readings or meetings, but he had given us these poems to read in his stead. … Blaylock and I would often break out laughing in the middle of reading them, which people thought was very insensitive of us, to be laughing at the poetical efforts of our deformed friend.

Ashbless is, however, best known in his incarnation as a 19th-century poet, in which guise he appears in Powers' The Anubis Gates (1983) and as a lesser character in Blaylock's The Digging Leviathan (1984). Neither author was aware that the other's novel contained a William Ashbless until the coincidence was noticed by the editor responsible for both books, who suggested that the two consult one another so that their references would be consistent.

In 1985, Powers and Blaylock produced Offering the Bicentennial Edition of the Complete Twelve Hours of the Night: 1785-1985, a prospectus for a non-existent collection of Ashbless poetry, published by Cheap Street Press. ("The Twelve Hours of the Night" had been mentioned in The Anubis Gates as Ashbless's most famous work.) The prospectus included a sample poem and a replica of Ashbless's signature (the "William" was signed by one, and the "Ashbless" by the other, of the authors). This was followed in 2001 by On Pirates (ISBN 1-931081-22-0) — supposedly written by Ashbless, with an introduction by Powers, an afterword by Blaylock, and illustrations by Gahan Wilson — and in 2002 by The William Ashbless Memorial Cookbook.

In his 1992 novel Last Call (ISBN 0-688-10732-X), Tim Powers includes a poem attributed to William Ashbless in the introduction to Book One. The poem is "from" a later time period: it mentions airplanes, cars and blue jeans.

World Fantasy Award—Novel

The World Fantasy Awards are given each year by the World Fantasy Convention for the best fantasy fiction published in English during the previous calendar year. The awards have been described by book critics such as The Guardian as a "prestigious fantasy prize", and one of the three most prestigious speculative fiction awards, along with the Hugo and Nebula Awards (which cover both fantasy and science fiction). The World Fantasy Award—Novel is given each year for fantasy novels published in English or translated into English. A work of fiction is defined by the organization as a novel if it is 40,000 words or longer; awards are also given out for pieces of shorter lengths in the Short Fiction and Long Fiction categories. The Novel category has been awarded annually since 1975.World Fantasy Award nominees and winners are decided by attendees and judges at the annual World Fantasy Convention. A ballot is posted in June for attendees of the current and previous two conferences to determine two of the finalists, and a panel of five judges adds three or more nominees before voting on the overall winner. The panel of judges is typically made up of fantasy authors and is chosen each year by the World Fantasy Awards Administration, which has the power to break ties. The final results are presented at the World Fantasy Convention at the end of October. Winners were presented with a statue in the form of a bust of H. P. Lovecraft through the 2015 awards; more recent winners receive a statuette of a tree.During the 44 nomination years, 154 authors have had works nominated; 45 of them have won, including ties. Five authors have won twice: Gene Wolfe, out of eight nominations; Tim Powers, out of five; Patricia McKillip, out of four; Jeffrey Ford, out of three; and James K. Morrow for both of his nominations. Wolfe has the most nominations for an author who has won at least once, while Stephen King has the most nominations without winning, at nine, followed by Charles L. Grant at six and Jonathan Carroll at five.

World Fantasy Award—Short Fiction

The World Fantasy Awards are given each year by the World Fantasy Convention for the best fantasy fiction published in English during the previous calendar year. The awards have been described by book critics such as The Guardian as a "prestigious fantasy prize", and one of the three most prestigious speculative fiction awards, along with the Hugo and Nebula Awards (which cover both fantasy and science fiction). The World Fantasy Award—Short Fiction is given each year for fantasy short stories published in English. A work of fiction is defined by the organization as short fiction if it is 10,000 words or less in length; awards are also given out for longer pieces in the Novel and Long Fiction categories. The Short Fiction category has been awarded annually since 1975, though before 1982—when the category was instated—it was named "Best Short Fiction" and covered works of up to 40,000 words. It was then renamed "Best Short Story" until 2016, when it was renamed to the "Short Fiction" category.World Fantasy Award nominees and winners are decided by attendees and judges at the annual World Fantasy Convention. A ballot is posted in June for attendees of the current and previous two conferences to determine two of the finalists, and a panel of five judges adds three or more nominees before voting on the overall winner. The panel of judges is typically made up of fantasy authors and is chosen each year by the World Fantasy Awards Administration, which has the power to break ties. The final results are presented at the World Fantasy Convention at the end of October. Winners were presented with a statue in the form of a bust of H. P. Lovecraft through the 2015 awards; more recent winners receive a statuette of a tree.During the 44 nomination years, 160 authors have had works nominated; 44 of them have won, including ties and co-authors. Only five authors have won more than once: Ramsey Campbell and James Blaylock with two wins out of four nominations each, Stephen King won two out of three, and Tanith Lee and Fred Chappell won both times they were nominated. Of authors who have won at least once, Jeffrey Ford and Kelly Link have the most nominations at five, followed by Dennis Etchison and Avram Davidson, who along with Campbell and Blaylock received four nominations. Charles de Lint has the most nominations without winning at five; he is followed by Michael Swanwick, who has had four nominations without winning.

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