Last night, I finished listening to Mur Lafferty's podiobook "Heaven," an existential comedy about "adventure in the afterlife." Heaven is the story of Kate and Daniel, two friends who die in a car crash and find themselves in Christian heaven, but who go adventuring to the other heavens of different faiths and even species (dog heaven totally rocks, it seems).
I'd subscribed to the book as a "podiobook" -- a service that sends one chapter every week to your podcast-app, but by chapter six I wanted to hear the entire thing, so I downloaded the remaining installments and listened to them all last night.
Lafferty is a funny writer, with a clear obsession for afterlife mythos and an admirable hand at drawing likable characters. She's also got excellent podcasting chops (no surprise there, she literally wrote the book on the subject), so this thing sounds great.
Lafferty was one of my writing students last autumn at the Viable Paradise science fiction and fantasy writers' workshop on Martha's Vineyard. She was one of the most promising writers out of a field of generally excellent writers. It's great to see her turning out such good work already!
(Shameless plug: admissions are open for this year's Viable Paradise, a one-week, intensive workshop, and I'll be teaching again this year)
Lafferty has written a sequel to Heaven already -- called "Hell," natch -- and the podiobook is live. I've just queued it up on my player. Can't wait.
I asked Amy Parness, the co-founder of Sparkle Labs, maker of fantastic educational electronics kits, to write a Medium post about gender and the business of being a maker business person. Her terrific essay calls out the problems with “pink girly engineering kits.” From Medium:
Zero UI is the new term for “invisible interfaces”—what happens in the future when all the clicking and tapping and typing is history: “If you look at the history of computing, starting with the jacquard loom in 1801, humans have always had to interact with machines in a really abstract, complex way.” [Fast Company]
CEO Dick Costolo will resign, to be replaced in the interim by Jack Dorsey
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