Out Now: Tarot in Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

Mythlore36.2My essay “The Unlikely Milliner & The Magician of Threadneedle-Street” has been published in Mythlore: A Journal of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Charles Williams, and Mythopoeic Literature. Click the 1st link to read a free PDF; click the 2nd to find information on ordering the issue (you can get it through your library, too).

There’s a whole special section on tarot edited by Emily Auger (whom tarot folk likely know well), as well as pieces on Tolkien, Lovecraft, Le Guin and Sayers.

Here’s the abstract for the essay which may intrigue your interest:

Susanna Clarke uses the tarot in her novel Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell much as she uses history: twisting it to open up spaces for magic and playfulness. She offers modifications on the traditional Tarot de Marseille that accurately predict the narrative events, yet deftly obscures the outcomes by leading the readers (and the characters) to jump to the wrong conclusions.

With another conference paper proposed on the novel, I guess I’m going to have to admit to maybe writing a book about this book…

Out Now: My Wandering Uterus

My Wandering Uterus: tales of traveling while female 

Edited by K. A. Laity, Foreword by H. Byron Ballard, Cover design or artwork by S. L. Johnson

Buy merchandise with the cover art at Red Bubble or Cafe Press.

List Price: $14.99
5″ x 8″ (12.7 x 20.32 cm) 
Black & White on White paper
360 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1986379014
ISBN-10: 1986379019
BISAC: Travel / General

My Wandering Uterus

A diverse treasure trove from women across the globe and from every walk of life!

This book contains memoirs, stories and poetry about the experiences of being a woman on the road — the joys, the perils, the lessons, the changes. From spiritual pilgrimages to forced evacuations, in pursuit of opportunity or to escape from the past, travel broadens the mind — and broads’ travel writing will delight your heart!

Tirgearr Sale!

Tirgearr Brithday 2018Oodles of things for cheap including my faboo zombie Western HIGH PLAINS LAZARUS. T-shirts, a podcast with authors, giveaways and more.

 

My Wandering Uterus ToC

Wandering Uterus Proposed for web

The all-but-final table of contents for My Wandering Uterus, the collection of travel writing by women that Byron and I were foolish enough to brainstorm together — joking! I suppose this is the nearest I will come to that feeling of a baby being overdue (at this rate, I fear it will be coming out smoking a cigar and demanding a martini). But the end is in sight!

We have poetry, memoir, travelogue, fiction, humour, and more from very different women who inhabit all walks of life — even a mother and daughter! I’m grateful to them all for trusting us with their tales.

There are one or two details to firm up [contributors! please correct any errors you see in your title, name or punctuation] but here we go:

A Journey Charm — K. A. Laity (translation from medieval English)
Foreword — H. Byron Ballard
Accidental Openings — Carolyn Coulson
Wearing the Shalwar Kameez — Dawn Reno Langley
Once Upon a Time in Mexico — Catherine Lundoff
Poems — Devon Balwit
In the Course of a Pilgrimage — Tahni J. Nikitins
The Five Dollar Car — Diane Payne
The Threshold of the Sheela — Amy J. Rio
Mexican Getaway — Tonja LH Vernazza
In Search of Sorrow — G. Clark Hellery
Freedom of Voice — Jessica Marie Baumgartner
How Could I Disappear? — Sandi Hoover
The Week I was Jodie Foster — Leanne Breiholz
The Time I Went to Malta — Holli Shan
Sally Lunn — H. Byron Ballard
Good Fortune — Ellen J. Perry
Five Poems — Miriam Sagan
From Warrior to Chaplain: Giving the Middle Finger to the Patriarchy — Tiffany Andes
Notes from Barakhamba — Kate Telma
Pilgrimages — Ginger Strivelli
Chasing Shadows — Tammy Conrad
Motosexual & Trains of Thought — Shannon McRae
Five Days in Sydney: Remembering Judy Garland — Joan Coulson
Journal of Drive Therapy — Clara Vann-Patterson
Get Miles — Susannah Blanchard
My Uterus Did Not Wander — Tamara Miles
Never Look at their Faces and Other Unwritten Rules — Sonya M. Hamrick
Traveling the Crow Road with My Daughter — Sheri Barker
Freedom to Move About the Cabin — Angela Kunschmann
The Anniversary Train — Catherine Nurmepuu
The Beauty of Language and the Inadequacies of Standard Dictionaries — Ellen Sandberg
My Wandering Freedom — Lisa Wagoner
Walking Veiled through Khan el Kalili — Cynthia Talbot
Hotel Sheets — Victoria Squid
Across the Cerulean Sea: Woman on Water? — MJ Toswell
Colophon: Blessing

My Blakean Muse

Rouze up, O Young Men of the New Age! set your foreheads against the ignorant Hirelings! For we have Hirelings in the Camp, the Court & the University, who would, if they could, for ever depress Mental & prolong Corporeal War.

William Blake, Preface to Milton

I have had some insight into a revision I need to make to my novel Hire Idiots. I’ve neglected to make clear the important role played by quislings.

quisling

Quislings are the reason the neoliberal effort succeeds. The hard-line zealots would get nowhere without them. They help normalise, apologise and internalise the reframing of education as assessment. Their efforts to ‘not make waves’ allow the system to drown in mediocrity. It’s always easier to ‘go with the flow’ in the short term, but the long term effects are deadly.

I’ve had more insight in recent years about my inability to conform to neurotypical conventions. Despite accusations, it’s not a pugnacious desire to ‘think outside the box’; it’s a kind of blindness. I can’t see the box.

william_blake_-_john_bunyan_plate_20_the_christian_fights_apollyon

William Blake: Apollyon Attacks Christian, Pilgrim’s Progress

Interview: Madonna of the Wasps

dvnrqmpuqaazeskFor those not on the ‘book, you can still see my interview with Chris Roy at Scream Hard Reviews here. I may be giving too much away with that picture of the outline of Madonna of the Wasps in my notebook, but I trust my handwriting is so bad that it’s pretty much indecipherable. 😉 (Also note Stephanie’s SpeakEasy design mug, Karen Jolly’s Anglo-Saxon charms book, Heyer’s Arabella, and the eyes of Hello Kitty).

Also The Blood Red Experiment has gained a few reviews, including a nice one here.

Horror, The Fall & other news

Mark E Smith of the FallOut now:

Over on the Fox Spirit Books blog I get to kick off Women of Horror month with a piece on The Haunting of Hill House, one of the finest novels ever written. Go read it (my piece and the novel).

I have a piece ‘The Three Rs’ over at 3AM Magazine. I had written for another thing that fell apart but it suited as a kind of encomium for Mark E. Smith. More to come doubtless as there are many things floating around in my head.

Chapter 4 of Madonna of the Wasps is out: chapter 5 at the end of the month. If you want to have a print copy, I have good news coming soon.

You listened to the radio show, right? Feel free to let WGXC know you liked it.

UPDATE: I am always forgetting to share my History Witch posts: most recently Sounding Out the Water Elf (another bit in my thinking about the sound of charms which I’ll be talking about at the Harvard conference in April).

NEXT WEEK: The SpeakEasy dames and I will be guest hosts at Ione’s Annual Dream Festival next week. If you’re on Facebook, join us talking and thinking about dreams and how they affect our waking lives. Some of the posts will be here as well. Starts on Monday!

Forthcoming Publications:

Twice Reviled: Medieval Fact & Fantasy.’ Out of the Cloister: Lone Medievalists Making the Middle Ages Matter: forthcoming piece on what it’s like to be the lone medievalist in a department as well as a fiction writing-lit prof (hint: even people in academia like you to stick to one category or the other).

The Unlikely Milliner & The Magician of Threadneedle-Street.” Mythlore: A Journal of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Charles Williams, and Mythopoeic Literature: forthcoming essay on the use of tarot in Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell — yes, yet another piece on that book so I suspect I may well end up writing a book about it.

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Travel: after a break of [cough] years, I’ll be heading to Kalamazoo for the annual Medieval Congress. Looking forward to my first paper on Rauf Coilyear, one of my new obsessions. I feel a little sad because I think the last time I was at the ‘Zoo was when I got to hang out with Kathryn Fernquist Hinds, who died suddenly this week. Her husband Arthur has asked those honouring her memory to make donations in her name to Planned Parenthood or the ACLU. You might also want to read her books.

I hope to go to MAMO as well: this year it will be in Rome. We shall see. Finances always questionable — and of course, I need to get accepted! But a scheme afoot to catch up with Alexandra Bava naturally and Dan Curley who I think might be there as well in November.

[Fill in the elventy thousand things I have forgotten to mention or haven’t finished]

Oh, and I have more Edinburgh pictures to share: must remember to do so!

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