An Interview With
Sean McMullen

A Soul For The Great Machine

Sean McMullen is a regular contributor to this magazine and to the Australian genre "scene" generally. He is an accomplished and popular writer of both fiction and non-fiction, internationally published and the winner of numerous national awards for his work in the field, including the 1992 and 1993 William Atheling Jr. Awards for articles appearing in this magazine. Sean has appeared on several occasions on the ABC's The Science Show, and his first book-length work, the collection Call to the Edge, was published last year to considerable acclaim. With several other books in preparation, he is building a reputation as one of this country's finer writers of Science Fiction, and this interview forms part of a Sean McMullen Special Issue.

Sean; please give us a bit of background about yourself and your writing.

I was born in Australia into a rather rare type of family: British refugees. My parents had fled India when Ghandi was assassinated, thinking that a repeat of the 1858 Mutiny was about to follow. McMullen is from the Scottish side of the family, but I have French, Irish, Welsh and English ancestors as well. My first real interest in science flared up when I was a small boy watching the early Soviet and American satellites moving among the stars. Around the same time I discovered SF in the form of HG Wells and Jules Verne stories in the Classics comic series. I soon graduated to SF in books and making my own rockets. After a few explosions and accidental hits on neighbours' roofs (and the occasional successful flight) I went on to radio astronomy, incorporating the family's TV antenna in my main array. This went well until one night my main amplifier shorted out and caught fire. Fortunately my parents were out and after a couple of hours help from my highly amused older brother I got the place back to normal, but I decided that study, surfing and science fiction were a bit safer - oh, and folk music: that was a good way to meet potential girlfriends. I actually wrote a few short stories as essays while at school, and about half of these were SF.

At university I discovered that I had a good singing voice and I joined the choral society and folk club. This led on to work in bands, madrigal groups, and even the State Opera, and I ceased writing SF for a decade or so. Most of my study was part time, and one of my jobs in this period was with the Walter and Eliza Hall Medical Research Institute as a laboratory assistant. That influenced me heavily, and I came close to following a career in medical research. I eventually graduated with a BA in History and Physics with honours, and was studying for a post-graduate diploma in Information Science when I decided to return to writing SF. A girlfriend had lent me the anthology from Ursula LeGuin's 1975 Australian writers' workshop (one of her friends had actually attended it) and I read the stories and decided that I could do at least as well. I bought an electric typewriter, but only wrote a couple of stories per year until I had my Masters Degree finished. Eight months after that I won the 1985 Worldcon writing competition with "The Deciad", and that was a big incentive to take writing SF seriously.

I have worked for the Bureau of Meteorology since 1981, and am currently a Senior Information Technology Officer in the Planning Sub-Section. My wife is a municipal librarian, and we have a school-age daughter.

You've said elsewhere that you wrote your first published sf story as a Computer Science undergraduate in 1979. What were the circumstances?

I was doing a post-graduate diploma in Computer Science and struggling with a program written in PDP11 assembler language. The strain induced a particularly vivid nightmare involving a maintenance program, Killer, that decided to solve the problem of over-quota files by materialising out of a screen in the form of an ogre and eating the students who were creating the over-quota files. When I woke up I wrote up the outline of what became my first amateur story to be published - "Killer".

Who do you read and enjoy, and who do you count amongst your literary influences?

This varies quite a lot. Bruce Sterling's writing has a lot in common with mine, and I read everything of his that is published, yet the elements that our work have in common arise from parallel evolution rather than emulation. In other SF, I like the historical feel of Walter M Miller's work; the dynamic flow of William Gibson's and Harlan Ellison's writing has impressed me; the technical purity and optimism of Arthur C Clarke's work was one of my biggest early influences, while I love the sense of vision that HG Wells' work has. Brunner and Dick have some important lessons for us too; where do I stop? Going back further, I find the Gilgamesh epic wonderful, and Russia's Kiev cycle of hero legends has much more going for it than the Norse legends, at least as far as I am concerned. Real history, of course, is fantastic for inspiration, and most of my best ideas come from real events and incidents.

It's not fashionable to show emotion, I suppose, but I like books and films that can move me. Notice that I said move, rather than entertain or impress; entertainment is important but not an end in itself, and 'impressive' intellectual writing can be the most boring garbage imaginable. Writing needs a heart and a soul behind it. I think that you communicate with a reader best when you make contact at an emotional level and, after that, well by all means be entertaining and clever if it is appropriate.

The Seven Samurai, The Seventh Seal, Destiny and My Neighbour Totoro are some examples of films that did something for me. I thought Alien was the finest gothic horror film that I have ever seen, while Forbidden Planet and 2001 had a sort of historic grandeur that had me running home to write my own versions of favourite scenes - in fact most of my earliest attempts at writing SF tended to be based on performance media. "The Deciad", my first big success, was inspired while I was listening to the Berlioz opera The Trojans, for example. One film that influenced me in particular was The Marriage of Maria Braun, and I have just finished a cyberesque motorcycle story that parallels its main theme.

Even though I have been reading SF since I was a child, it has always been just one part of my overall reading of general literature, science, history and such. During the Sixties I saw the original screenings of The Outer Limits, Out of the Unknown, Dr Who and Star Trek beside news reports of real pioneering space exploration; that was a heady and optimistic environment to grow up in, and it influenced me heavily. World-weary critics can be as sarcastic as they like
about Star Trek, but my friends at Cape Canaveral tell me it's the number one show with NASA people - and they are the ones who are doing most of the real exploration.

Your writing first came to the attention of the international community with the publication of "The Colours of the Masters". What was the genesis of that story? Is it typical of your work?

It was 1986, and I'd caught some sort of tropical fever while doing a computer installation in Darwin, then had to fly on to Brisbane to do a very urgent software fix. By the time I'd finished that I was a bit of a basket case, and I lay delirious for a couple of days in a Brisbane hotel. I kept hearing classical music as if it was coming from a distant and badly tuned radio station. I fantasised that it was a transmission from a planet hundreds of light years away, and that I was an alien listening to a radio broadcast of Paganini playing his own work. As I said, I was delirious! On the plane home I began to wonder what would have happened if the radio and the phonograph actually had been invented in the 1820s. I wrote up the outline of what was originally a radio play, and later changed it into a story. Is "The Colours of the Masters" typical of my work? Well . . . yes, in the sense that it's hopefully moving without being mawkish and that it's founded on the hardest of hard technology. Other than that I have no set formula for writing SF.

Obviously, the publication of Call to the Edge, your debut book-length work, was a major achievement. How has it gone? Has it changed you as a writer?

Call to the Edge is a collection of short fiction, and it was not all that hard to assemble. Peter McNamara [of Aphelion Publications] approached me about doing the collection and we worked out a selection of original and reprint stories. He presented me with about 600 minor changes, about 5% of which were simple problems which I corrected. The other changes were nearly all requests for more detail and description: I was a very terse writer until then and Peter taught me that a slower pace with more detail will not put anyone off-side. It has also taught me the importance of book-length fiction. My short fiction output has dropped off somewhat as I try to make the transition to novels, and Aphelion has actually accepted a series of novels from me.

The collection took a year to produce, almost to the day. In terms of sales it's largely paid for itself, and is only a few dozen copies behind Terry Dowling's Blue Tyson, which came out about the same time. All the reviews that I have seen - and that's over a dozen from professional reviewers - have been good. It got a Ditmar nomination, and one of the stories, "The Eyes of the Green Lancer", was nominated for the Readercon Small Press Award in the USA.

Has having had a book-length work on the market changed the way that you relate
to or are treated by the genre community (including publishers, reviewers and
readers alike)?

Yes and no. A book involves a fairly large capital outlay compared to the average short story, so that any author who can persuade a publisher to make that sort of investment in a first book is bound to be taken more seriously by other publishers. Reviewers and readers were rather different. They began to take me seriously after I sold my first short fiction in America. It's as if my stories in the likes of Analog, Fantasy and Science Fiction and Interzone were what established my credentials with them. Interestingly, the group that the book really made an impression on was what you might call general readers: the scientists and engineers at work, the students in my karate club, and my general circle of friends and neighbours. Most of them hardly ever read stories in magazines, but they do buy and borrow books. I seemed to become "real" to them as an author when Call to the Edge came out.

What's been your most personally satisfying writing project - the one you consider your crowning achievement to date? Why?

There is no one achievement; it's the conjuring of a great idea that really satisfies me. The moral questions surrounding research into death in "While the Gate Is Open"; the difficulties people are likely to experience in switching between a sophisticated virtual reality and the real world as shown in "Alone In His Chariot"; the genetic "rake" in "Pacing the Nightmare"; the human-powered time machine in "Pax Romana". As far as writing itself is concerned, I did particularly enjoy the creation of "The Miocene Arrow", which is due to be published in Aphelion's 1994 anthology, but this may be because of the ideas in it.

What's your impression of the value of local publication - both professional and semi-professional - in the development of an author? If you could place all your work overseas, would you?

To answer the second question first, no. I admit that "The Way To Greece", which is in this issue of Eidolon, did have a couple of submissions overseas, but I just decided that it was most appropriate for a Greek drama set in 600BC on the banks of the Swan River to be published in a West Australian magazine. For other short SF, well I think that local magazines should be properly supported by authors as well as readers, and I do reserve part of my output for the local market. I promised Voices in the Light to Aphelion even though the publication date was over two years away because I thought that they should be publishing more novels for their own good.

Local publication does have value in an author's development. Apart from being a good training ground for beginners, local magazines can provide a few credentials in the way of awards and such for authors trying to get publishers to take their novels seriously. Locally published novels can also have a better chance of being accepted by overseas publishers simply because a well-presented book looks a lot better than 300 double-spaced A4 pages. Also, to hark back to an earlier point, once publishers see that another publisher has had enough confidence in a book to put money into it, they probably feel happier about that book as a publishing proposition.

You've written articles and essays, as well as radio broadcasts, on both science fiction and science. Do you get as much pleasure from writing non-fiction as you do from writing fiction?

It's a different type of pleasure. I like taking a difficult technical subject and turning it into something that people can enjoy reading and understand easily. All my so-called serious technical papers have been structured to be accessible, and I have quite a backlog of technical writing waiting to be done.

You're also well-known as a bibliographer. What is it that drew you to that?

While an aspiring author I wondered if there was any pattern in the way in which successful Australian SF authors were getting into print. I began the bibliography but found no magical pattern, yet I did notice that a lot of conventional wisdom about Australian SF was not supported by the facts. While developing my bibliography I had accumulated a pretty large collection of Australian SF, so I began writing articles and giving talks. These have been popular, so I've kept doing them. Talks and articles don't take much time, and my computer saves me from a lot of the raw statistical work.

You've recently let it be known that you're winding the bibliographic work back. Where is that aspect of your work in SF headed?

Doing a really good job on Australian SF bibliography would be a big overhead on my time - when added to the demands from my family, my job, and writing my own SF. The really serious bibliographic work is being done elsewhere; I'm just an amateur who keeps an eye on the field.

You've now won the William J Atheling Award two years running for your articles on the history of Australian SF. What is it that keeps you returning to this subject? Can it go on?

Australian SF needs promotion; check my article in this issue of Eidolon for more details, and begin with the fact that per head of population we have eight times less SF by our own authors on our bookshop shelves than is the case in the UK or USA. I am promoting Australian SF rather than writing its history, it's just that I happen to use historical background a lot. Other people are working on proper histories of Australian SF at a much deeper level than me. One factor which keeps me returning to the subject is that, as I mentioned, much of the folklore of Australian SF has no basis in fact. Thus I keep writing articles to straighten out the record. Can it go on? Well, yes for a while yet: the type of articles that I do are not hard to research and write.

Do you, in fact, think that there exists any such thing as "Australian SF", rather than simply SF written by Australians?

Yes . . . but it's still emerging. As a generalisation, most Australian SF from the 1840s to the 1960s tended to be genre fiction with an Australian setting rather than something uniquely Australian. Since then, for example, authors have been incorporating aspects of Aboriginal culture, rather than using Australian natives as props for local colour. I take an interest in Aboriginal culture by way of listening to their music shows and following their political development and, although native culture has not yet been a major part of my fiction, I want to know what I'm talking about if I ever choose to make it so. The general public has recently realised that Australian wildlife is wonderful and unique, and my first story in Analog, "An Empty Wheelhouse", addresses this subject. It brought me a lot of good feedback from American readers. At a more literary level, can one say that Australian literature in general exists as anything more than an offshoot of West-European culture? Well . . . yes, but European Australia is a young culture and all young cultures are a bit crass, so we should all work harder to make more if it. We were a convict and pioneering society for over a century, and this has etched a deep anti-authoritarian and non-conformist streak into our literature. Then again, overseas professional editors are often reluctant to publish what might lose them subscribers - and fair enough, I suppose, because editing is their job, while Australian editors generally have a separate income and thus have no such inhibitions about antagonising a small percentage of their readership if a story has merit. Yes, Australian SF exists, but the differences are subtle.

Does your interest in Australian sf and the apparent "Australianness" in your writing reflect a nationalistic or patriotic undercurrent?

Nationalistic, patriotic . . . they have become dirty words since Yugoslavia disintegrated, yet the concept of loyalty to a culture or nation is not intrinsically bad. You could imagine some 5th Century Roman intellectual spouting a lot of frightfully witty sarcasm about Roman politics, culture and values - until the riff-raff swarmed over the wall, looted his silver, drank his wine, smashed his crockery, took over his house and put him to work carrying pig swill. Australianness is our lifestyle and culture. Australians may deride it, but any serious prospect of losing it would probably have most of them banging on the door of the nearest army recruiting depot. The trouble is that financial mismanagement and environmental degradation are more of a threat to Australianness than foreign invasion, and such threats are too subtle to motivate most people. I value the comparative comfort, safety and tolerance that we have here and my writing often reflects my belief that one needs to defend those things. Yesterday I was mailed a pamphlet "What is a Citizen?" from the "Ideas for Australia Program 1993". It was big on the rights and privileges of citizens and rather quiet on their duties and obligations, yet without the latter two you don't get the former two. A good SF story can drop you decades into the future and let you see the consequences of allowing your culture and lifestyle to be eroded.

When discussing an author's works there is a tendency to try to identify common themes and concerns. Are there any recurrent themes in your work? Do you have aims and agendas in your work beyond entertainment? Do you have some barrows to push, higher goals you'd like to achieve?

I've stayed with the Weather Bureau because I like the idea of working for an organisation that is helping to do something about environmental problems. Yes, I am idealistic and I'm proud of it, and it flavours my writing. I believe that civilization in general and science in particular have a lot to offer, and there is probably an undercurrent of trying to remind people of this in my work. Of course any field of human endeavour can do with reform and moderation, but we shouldn't throw the benefits out in a fit of zealous enthusiasm. My second Analog story, "A Greater Vision", and my first Aurealis story "The Dominant Style" are both about utopias where the excesses of civilization have been moderated, while most of the benefits have been kept.

How do you feel about consistent settings, related stories etcetera? Are there settings in your published short fiction that you intend to pursue to novel-length?

Consistent settings are a great idea as long as you have something to say. My fiction is pretty wide-ranging, but there are a few stories with common settings that have become or will become novels. I would go as far as a trilogy if I had something to say, but no further. Look at it another way: Ben Bova's Mars weighs in at 567 pages. That's over two and a half times the length of Greg Egan's first SF novel, Quarantine. Now if Aphelion wanted to give me 600 or so pages to play with I could extend my first novel, Voices in the Light to tell the whole story that I have in my mind. Yet because I'm not Ben Bova and because Aphelion is a small press, the novel has a similar length to Quarantine, so the rest of the story must go into two more volumes.

Aphelion accepted Voices in the Light last January, and it incorporates the stories "The Eyes of the Green Lancer", "Destroyer of Illusions", "Souls in the Great Machine", and "The Glasken Chronicles". It has good prospects, too. "Souls in the Great Machine" was reviewed in Locus as one of the highlights of Universe 2, where it appeared, and it is the introduction to the Calculor (a human calculating machine), the strange and brilliant woman who is head librarian, and the huge library of Libris itself. "The Eyes of the Green Lancer" was nominated for the Readercon Small Press Awards in America, and aspects of it were inspired by Bruce Sterling's "Dinner in Audoghast". It introduces the Call, which tries to lure people away to an unknowable fate, along with the beautiful but dangerously eccentric Abbess of Glenellen and her half-brother. Maybe the novel will do as well as these, or better. Those who liked the drunken lecher John Glasken will be relieved to learn that he survives to become a most sought-after man in Voices in the Light, while those who hated him will be pleased to hear that he suffers a great deal. Aphelion has also accepted a novel based on the stories "The Deciad" and "Pax Romana", both of which feature Roman time machines - the latter's machine being powered by humans. The underlying theme is complex, in that the main character has sacrificed a long life for the chance to travel through millennia. I have a strong interest in different forms of immortality and why people think that it's such a good idea in the first place.

You liked the Gavin O'Keefe illustration for the Eidolon appearance of "At the Focus" so much that you bought it. In fact, you've become something of an authority on Australian illustration. What are your feelings about the importance of art in relation to science fiction?

I disagree with the authority bit. Without the help of Nick Stathopoulos I'd be just another uninformed opinion on SF art. In general SF art contributes to the genre's allure and mystique, it suggests images for difficult concepts, and it identifies the genre to the general reader. Art with good imagination and a professional finish is indispensable in modern publishing because readers have become used to high quality in genre images and illustrations.

I understand you once fronted for a "folk-rock" band. Did you ever record? Does music influence your writing? What music do you listen to for pleasure?

I have been in various groups, but the one that you mean was probably a bush band in Canberra, Joe Wilson's Mates. We made reasonable money for what we were, and many of the other performers are still playing. We did mainly Australian folk songs and bush dance tunes, but never recorded anything. Music sometimes suggests the atmosphere for my stories, and I often have a theme going through my head which 'steers' the setting. My recreational listening covers everything from medieval, classical and romantic to jazz, folk and Eastern music. I even keep an ear on pop music, and I find that it has a lot of lessons to offer on modern culture.

Have you ever written for other media? Do you have aspirations in those directions?

"The Colours of the Masters" was originally a radio play, and the story in this issue of Eidolon, "The Way to Greece", also began life as a radio play. I have written several stories with eventual conversion to a screenplay in mind, but the 'eventual' is still in the future. I have tried writing music and I have done quite a few paintings as well, but I don't have the same flair for those media as for writing.

Writing is generally a solitary exercise, unlike working in a band, for example. Yet there are exceptions. What are your feelings about collaborative writing, which you've also been involved in? Do you feel comfortable adapting your personal tastes to fit in with those of other writers in this way? Would you do more?

Collaborations are no problem. I'm not precious about my own words and ideas, I only want the final product to be the best possible. Most of my collaborations have been non-fiction, such as the Locus reports with Terry Dowling, the SF art articles with Nick Stathopoulos, and the technical and scientific talks and broadcasts with John de la Lande. I did collaborate on one SF story with Paul Collins, and I provide scientific advice to quite a few authors. If there was some story that seemed appropriate for a collaboration, yes, I suppose I would.

How do you handle rejections these days?

Badly, as I always have. The more that I sell, the better I think that I know the market, so the more bewildered I am when something gets bounced. On the other hand, each acceptance is still a pleasant surprise, and I get a real high out of them. I have been the editor of a student literary magazine, so I know what submissions look like from the other side of the editor's desk. I never hold a rejection against an editor. They often have criteria for selection that go beyond what they regard as a good story.

Do you find you're able to judge the quality of your own work now you've been at it for over a decade? Where do your literary weaknesses lie?

I think that I am a little too harsh as a judge of the quality of my work, but this is probably not a bad thing. You may have heard about the Scotsman who finds an enchanted lamp and is granted three wishes by the genie therein. He wishes for a new set of bagpipes, then wishes to be able to play them really well. "So that you or your audience appreciates the playing?" asks the genie. "You can't have it both ways." "Why myself, of course!" replies the Scotsman. "Very well, but take my advice and wait a few days before your final wish," warns the genie. A few days later the Scotsman rubs the lamp again shouting "Please, please, change my playing so that my neighbours like it instead of me." That says it all. I know that most people like my work while I always seem to see only weaknesses, yet I can live with that.

A work can be good without being appropriate for a particular venue, or without being suited to a particular editor's tastes, and this is something that I still have trouble with. Just when I think that I have an editor's wavelength the next three submissions get rejected. The development of style is another of my weaknesses, and is related to lack of time. You have to read to develop your style, and I have trouble finding spare time to read enough fiction. Work pays me to read a lot of magazines, but while Unix Review, High Performance Computing, and Australian Computerworld help keep my grasp of new technology strong, they hardly qualify as the literary vanguard.

What are your feelings about the non-professional SF community: "fandom"? How about facing the public in general; you've been a performer - does it come naturally? How important is public relations for an author?

I think that SF is very lucky to have fandom. Other genres do not, or not to the same extent at least. Fans do help bring authors together, and they provide a big base for launching works to wider markets. On the whole fans have been good to me, and have given me a lot of encouragement. I did go through a period of being sniped at by a faction of the local fans, but once they realised that I was going to ignore their scabby reviews and fabricated rumours they abandoned me for more exciting quarry.

Facing the public is - for me - like driving a car. I find public speaking easy, but I take it seriously. Being on stage professionally for years has given me that training, and I do it nearly every week at work during meetings about computer configurations and at karate when instructing students. Getting back to SF, good public relations are vital to any contemporary author. When Neil Gaiman was asked this question in Adelaide last year he replied that word-of-mouth recommendations were recognised as the most potent force in bookselling, so why leave it all to your publisher? Public appearances are not the ego-boosting wank that non-professionals imagine them to be; they are hard and demanding work, and they are a two-edged sword that can remove a careless user's fingers. Make a good impression on an audience and each person might tell five or six friends about you, but make an arse of yourself and each person will tell five or six dozen what you did. That's hanging over my reputation and sales figures whenever I stand up in front of an audience, and I never let myself forget it. To be a little less paranoid, many readers like to know the person behind their favourite works, and I like to know what typical readers think of what I write. It's a great opportunity to promote one's work and make a few friends, so why pass it up?

Does being a performer come naturally? Probably not, but then I started by singing in choirs, moved to bands and madrigal groups, then became a solo singer, so I was pretty much used to being in front of dozens - and sometimes hundreds - of expectant faces by the time I had to go on stage by myself. For general social interaction I actually prefer parties, because the conversations have a chance to move both ways.

Have you ever encountered "personal" fans? What was the experience like?

I have had a fair number of fan letters, mainly from America, and all complimentary. That's about as personal a following as I have managed to get so far, because I simply don't have enough fiction published. It's rather embarrassing when they ask what else I have had published and I have to confess that most of my work is only in back issues of magazines, and that my novels are still to be published. My first Analog story, "An Empty Wheelhouse", generated about as much fan mail as the rest of my work put together; in fact an American professor of zoology wrote a letter to the editor speculating about some of the finer points of marsupial anatomy covered in that story. That showed that my research had been fairly sound, and was certainly a good experience.

Which do you value more: popular or critical acclaim, money or credibility, the Ditmars and the Hugo, or the John Campbell?

They all have a certain allure, but basically I just like crafting a really good story or technical paper. I may have won the Ditmar for short fiction twice, but the first time was by one vote on 5th preference and the second time was by two votes on 5th preference. I have an entry in the Clute/Nicholls Encyclopedia, but had Call To The Edge been published a week or so later, I doubt that I would have been included. If that's fame, it's a pretty insecure handhold that I have on it. A story of mine once topped a magazine's reader's poll, but because of the way that the editors counted the votes it slipped several places - yet I was happy because my faith in the story had been secretly confirmed by the readers. Acclaim is great, but it should be a byproduct of your writing and not an end in itself. If your work is good enough, all of the desirables listed in your question will be within reach, but merely wishing for those desirables will not make you a better writer. There are plenty of SF authors who have managed to get a few stories published that have won critical acclaim and awards - and have then dropped writing cold. You have to value writing more than its byproducts or you just can't stay with it.

What would it take to make you give up your day-job?

Nothing would. I love the technical work that I do and I find the scientific environment of the Bureau of Meteorology very stimulating. I spent 17 years at University studying part time to get the four sets of letters after my name, so I have become pretty good at organising my spare time for writing and research. A. Bertram Chandler managed to produce 40 books and 201 short stories without having to quit his job as a ship's master, so there is a precedent for having a job yet producing a lot of fiction.

What's next from Sean McMullen?

Aphelion's next book is an anthology of Australian SF, and it includes my novelette "The Miocene Arrow". Aurealis will soon be publishing "Charon's Anchor", the sequel to "Pax Romana". Looking further ahead, there is my Aphelion novel Voices in the Light, and although Aphelion wants this to be the first of the Greatwinter trilogy, the novel after that will be The Shadow of Decius, based on "The Deciad", "Pax Romana" and "Charon's Anchor". Next comes the sequel to Voices in the Light - but these are all existing works. I am working on an entirely separate novel at present, which I shall try to sell overseas, and I have lots of short works sold, on submission, or in progress.

Sean McMullen, thank you very much. We wish you the best with all your projects.

Originally appeared pp. 16-26, Eidolon 13, July 1993.
Copyright © 1993 Eidolon Publications.