Thank you to all the bloggers who participated in THE PRE-PROGRAMMING’s Cover Reveal Blog Tour

Visit one of the tour stops for a chance to win a print copy of THE AUTOMATION and read an excerpt from Vol. 2.

Get in gear – it's finally here! The #CoverReveal for the #sequel to #TheAutomation has been birthed from the subterranean publishing forge. 🌋🌋🌋 Do judge us by our glitchy cover!. . 🎠🎪🎠Follow the blog tour on our Twitters ( @circofootnotes & @circoringmaster ) for a chance to win a print copy of Vol. 1 and to read an excerpt from Vol. 2🎠🏛🎠. . [[[The crippled god of #metallurgy, fire, and #alchemy has many names and many faces—sometimes #Hephaestus, #Ptah, or #Vulcan. He changes to suit his needs. And just like his names, his creations have gone through countless revisions. This time, he’s finally onto something—his #Automata have turned the heads of other #gods. They’ve noticed their pre-programmed potential. There’s a reason Vulcan didn’t scrap the Automata—a reason he left them in the care of humans all this time. They were just the beta testers for his most intricate windup toy yet… . Vulcan’s ancient Automata find their purpose rebooted in the second installment of the CIRCO DEL HERRERO/THE BLACKSMITH’S CIRCUS series. Their immortal human Masters will drop like flies—superfluous in the next round as the gods shuffle in a new deck of fateful cards. The Masters can choose how and when, but they will all die to free the Automata of their earthly chains. Odys and his Automaton, Maud, struggle to protect his twin sister from the plotting of his dual-bodied adversaries. But his sister, Odissa, finds herself a willing participant in The Blacksmith’s latest exhibition—could she be the missing cog to the god’s tightly wound machine all along? . In this thrilling sequel to THE AUTOMATION, the #Narrator and #Editor drag readers deeper into the dark history and even darker future of Automata. When the subterranean god emerges with his postlapsarian blueprint, so will the truth about B.L.A. and G.B. Gabbler.]]] #whatthehammer🔨 #whatthechain🔗 #inwhatfurnace🔥 #wasthybrain🎠

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THE PRE-PROGRAMMING, Sequel to THE AUTOMATION, gets a blurb:

The Pre-programming Vol. 2 of the Circo del Herrero series and sequel to The Automation book cover portion showing only title

[The crippled god of metallurgy, fire, and alchemy has many names and many faces—sometimes Hephaestus, Ptah, or Vulcan. He changes to suit his needs. And just like his names, his creations have gone through countless revisions. This time, he’s finally onto something—his Automata have turned the heads of other gods. They’ve noticed their pre-programmed potential. There’s a reason Vulcan didn’t scrap the Automata—a reason he left them in the care of humans all this time. They were just the beta testers for his most intricate windup toy yet…

Vulcan’s ancient Automata find their purpose rebooted in the second installment of the CIRCO DEL HERRERO/THE BLACKSMITH’S CIRCUS series. Their immortal human Masters will drop like flies—superfluous in the next round as the gods shuffle in a new deck of fateful cards. The Masters can choose how and when, but they will all die to free the Automata of their earthly chains. Odys and his Automaton, Maud, struggle to protect his twin sister from the plotting of his dual-bodied adversaries. But his sister, Odissa, finds herself a willing participant in The Blacksmith’s latest exhibition—could she be the missing cog to the god’s tightly wound machine all along?

In this thrilling sequel to THE AUTOMATION, the Narrator and Editor drag readers deeper into the dark history and even darker future of the Automata. When the subterranean god emerges with his postlapsarian blueprint, so will the truth about B.L.A. and G.B. Gabbler. Ideal for fans of Scott Hawkin’s The Library at Mount Char, Jo Walton’s The Just City, and all the way to Homer’s The Odyssey, THE PRE-PROGRAMMING is a literary outrage that dares you to keep reading between the lines and the footnotes.]

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Margaret Atwood on social media, Wattpad, and anonymous authors:

“Well, you don’t have to be in social media. You can turn it off. So for writers I would say don’t go there if you find it uncomfortable, you know. But your publishers will say “Oh, you need to have a Facebook page,” you need to, now they’re saying an Instagram. I had to get an Instagram because there were two people on Instagram pretending to be me. And the same thing happened with Twitter. There were two people on Twitter pretending to be me, and one of them was tweeting this really mushy, romantic stuff that I would never do. So, I mean, it was offensive. Not because it was vulgar, but because it wasn’t vulgar enough. But this world is not for everyone, and I know a lot of writers who just don’t do it at all. Although they may still be having their lives ruined by email, they don’t do the social media stuff.

However, your real question is, What about young people? What about kids whose parents have ill-advisedly let them have smartphones at too early an age? I would have really strongly advised against that because the Internet is not the real world. It’s out of the matrix. Some of the people on it are real people, but other people are not, and other people are pretending to be people that they aren’t. And it can be quite dangerous in that way, especially at the point in which the Internet intersects with the real world and some child predator wants to set up a meeting. So you can, parents, get a thing that allows you to oversee what your kids are viewing and receiving on these platforms.

I’ll say a positive thing. Ready for this? Brace yourself. There is a platform called Wattpad, and that’s a user-generated, story-sharing site they try to keep pretty positive, like, free of trolls and abuse. And it’s used quite a lot by young writers, and the beauty of it is, when you were in high school, it used to be the only thing you were asked to write was [“My Summer Vacation,’] and students did not exert the best of their talents on such subjects. But had they written the steamy vampire story they really wanted to write, their peer group, their parents, and their teachers would have known it was them. That’s why they didn’t do it. But they’re doing it now, and they’re doing it on Wattpad under a pseudonym, and we know, because you get comments back from your readers, we know that once such a person knows they have an audience, they up their writing game. So that’s pretty positive, don’t you think?”

-Margaret Atwood

[Via]

On the death of the exposed author:

“Though I have scaled back those honest reviews, I miss them sometimes. I miss saying what I really think. I’d be lying if I told you I didn’t occasionally consider creating another persona, a pseudonym, who could speak the raging, blinding, ballsy truth I want to piss all over the internet some days…

Back in 1967, a writer named Alice Sheldon created a whole new life, an entire persona, called James Tiptree, Jr. She managed this fiction for many years. Robert Silverberg famously said of Tiptree, ‘It has been suggested that Tiptree is female, a theory that I find absurd, for there is to me something ineluctably masculine about Tiptree’s writing.’

Sheldon found a particularly beautiful world in that persona, for many reasons, among them the cofidence ad freedom it brought. After she was outed as Tiptree in 1976 (after fans saw a letter of Tiptree’s about his mother dying in Chicago, they looked up the obituary and made the connection), she said ‘My secret world had been invaded ad the attractive figure of Tiptree — he did strike several people as attractive — was revealed as nothing but an old lady in Virginia.’

Being outed was devastating, but the secret, like all secrets, was bound to come out, and Sheldon must have known that as much as Requires Hate did when she decided to turn her hand at publishing fiction in the very venues she’d critiqued, befriending the very authors whose work she’d been shiv-grindingly reviewing for the lulz…

In my heart of hearts, I’d hoped it would all go away. God knows people like Harlan Ellison have been saying the dumbest, most abusive and hateful shit for years and no on seems to fucking care, even when they assault another writer onstage. But for some reason folks were really, really upset that a woman who ranted angrily on the internet for the entertainment value of a few hundred people was going to be successful by pure virtue of how great her writing was.

Somehow duping everyone into thinking they were some nice person was a hateful crime against humanity, as if we all haven’t been pretending to be somebody else on the internet ever since there was a fucking internet.

Doxxing — the revealing of someone’s personal information o the internet — to me always screams of punishment. It screams of anger. Of fighting hate with hate. Burning someone down to make yourself feel better. It’s someone screaming angrily that if they can’t be happy, no one can be happy…

We make excuses for men. We make room for men.

You should keep being Tiptree. You aren’t the same if you’re Sheldon. Sheldon is just an old woman from Virginia. We can burn burn Sheldon down and erase her.

In truth, many writers are assholes. They aren’t people you want to go to tea with. I don’t like people, generally. I find them exhausting. I don’t want to be friends with Harlan Ellison or Larry Correia or Orson Scott Card. Nick Mamatas has been one of the genre’s biggest fucking trolls for ten years, and nobody blacklisted him or sent around a petition, and when he’s got his asshole meter turned down, he too can be terribly entertaining on the internet…

We get angry for feeling hurt, for feeling duped, when the best way to respond when someone plays a masterful game is, quite simply, this:

‘Well played. You’re a remarkable writer. I wish you the greatest success in your career.’

We say that shit because we are fucking adults. Because the writing is good. We’re not here to be friends. I don’t like a lot of writers. But when their writing is not bullshit, I still read it, quite often. The persona may be a lie. All of them may be a lie. Shit, the work may even be a lie! But we are not in love with pixels on the internet; we are not in love with the ideas of people and their petty fucking feuds and scrambling attention-grabbing. We are in love with their work.” -Kameron Hurley, The Geek Feminist Revolution. 

GABBLER RECOMMENDS: A Pound of Flesh By Katherine Angel

‘Ferrante’s books are, it’s worth remembering, significantly about women’s negotiation of the public and private realm, and about the violence and surveillance women routinely experience.

This investigation, of a kind that might ordinarily be reserved for corrupt politicians, relies on a conviction that Ferrante has committed a clear wrong by requesting her privacy. She owes us her real identity, Gatti thinks. Moreover, the phenomenal success of her books, according to Gatti’s dubious logic, legitimizes his pursuit into that identity. There are, of course, no grounds for the violent exposure of who she might be. An author owes her readers nothing beyond the work itself. Artists create artwork, which we consume; this does not entitle us to consume their person.

The punitive edge to Gatti’s intrusion speaks of a desire to make some writers offer up a pound of flesh for their success – to make them pay some penance for it. Why should we feel we can extract this price? It is significant that Ferrante’s ‘unmasking’ has occurred in the context of tiresome debates about whether she is really a woman or, in fact, a man. This persistent preoccupation is suggestive of the tendency to measure a writer’s literary worth in relation not just to the work, but also to other markers: of gender, race, class. The urge to uncover the ‘real’ Ferrante enacts an imperative to locate her in these systems – and finally, perhaps, to decide on her literary significance. The crime that Ferrante has committed, in Gatti’s eyes, is that of witholding the signs by which he might read her as a “woman writer”.’

[Via]