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The Order of Oddfish


I read first chapter of The Magnificent Moots with video accompaniment

December 12, 2013

Chicagoans! This Saturday (12/14/2013) I’ll also be reading a piece in which I affectionately impersonate legendary Chicago newspaperman RICK KOGAN at Christopher Piatt’s “salon in a saloon,” the Paper Machete reading series. At the Green Mill (4802 N. Broadway). It’s at 3pm and it’s free. Details here.

So I was working on this science-fiction novel, The Magnificent Moots. It’s about a brother and sister of the Moot family who are invited to compete in an Interplanetary Olympics. Elsewhere I described it as “a combination of Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game, Douglas Adams’ The Hitch-hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and the movie The Royal Tennenbaums. With a dollop of the 1970s TV special Battle of the Network Stars.”

Unfortunately, I put it aside to focus on other projects. Now I’m back on it! Back in October I read the first chapter of The Magnificent Moots at the Tuesday Funk reading series at one of my favorite bars in Chicago, Hopleaf. The video is above.

This first chapter is about a skydiving swordfighting game on Mars. I thought it would be fun to edit together a video collage to play along with my reading, so the video above shows my reading accompanied by a mishmash of clips of skydiving, octopi, swordfighting, dragons, and spaceships, mixed with Isao Tomita’s electronic version of Holst’s “The Planets.” Sounds like a mess, right? It kind of was, but the crowd and I had a good time with it.

(Whoa. Just looked back in my blog to see the first time I mentioned The Magnificent Moots. It was in 2009, with this post. In it, I read a completely different first chapter that I’ve since discarded, which is unfortunate, because Paul Hornschemeier did great illustrations for it, which are also in the post . . . )