Beltane 2013 Newsletter

Greetings Everyone,

Welcome to Issue #7 of my quarterly newsletter, posted to and e-mailed to subscribers on Beltane 2013.

New Collection
My new poetry and short story collection The Ruin of Beltany Ring: A Collection of Pagan Poems and Tales is now available in paperback and Kindle editions! To celebrate, I'm offering two promotions:

  • Kindle users can download the collection for free today, May 1, 2013 at by clicking here.
  • Goodreads members can enter to win an autographed copy of the collection between May 1-31, 2013 by clicking here.

Reviewers can also request a free digital copy in their format of choice by sending me an email via the contact form on my web site by clicking here.

I'm delighted to report that I'll be appearing as a guest at Harbour Con-Fusion from August 2-4 in beautiful Saint John, New Brunswick! I'll have copies of my new collection on hand, of course, and I'll be hosting two panels there. Here's the info:

Physical Worldbuilding
This panel will explore the science of physical worldbuilding using Elizabeth Viau's online course materials from the Charter College of Education, California State University, Los Angeles. From solar systems to climate to life-forms, we'll look at what it means to construct a habitable planet from scratch and fill it with living things.

Cultural Worldbuilding
This panel will explore the process of culture creation using Patricia C. Wrede's Fantasy Worldbuilding Questions. From physical and historical features to social organization to daily life, we'll look at what it means to create a fully-realized imaginary setting populated by believable characters.

Old Story, New Friends
The very kind Ally Leja of Geek Inked Magazine has offered a thoughtful discussion and review of my short story "From Our Minds to Yours", which appeared in The Pagan Anthology of Short Fiction: 13 Prize Winning Tales. Here's an excerpt:

"C.S.’s short story raises interesting questions. It touches on the consequences of technology introduced too quickly and without forethought; Nanotechnology as a replacement for advertising, driving an unnatural desire for a particular product, and the unforeseen consequences if that product becomes unattainable. The premise is brilliant because of how probable it could be: How could any modern corporation refuse the idea of ‘converting’ sales through infection instead of through the incessant repetition of advertising (just compare the cost of developing and implementing that kind of tech versus that of a 30 sec spot at the Superbowl). It turns a classic theme on its head: Instead of sufficiently advanced technology appearing as magic, it is the use of magic to overcome the effects of advanced tech gone wrong. As one trained in psychology and neuroscience, the placebo effect is close to magic in the Clarkian sense: The brain, convinced it is going to get better, does. To a pagan neuroscientist the idea of manipulating the placebo effect through rituals and belief is only a technology that has not yet been understood: What more fitting than to use this kind of magic to break the effects of an advanced tech like neuro-nanobots. It’s enough to make my inner geek dance skyclad under a full moon."

You can read the full discussion and review by clicking here, and you can read the story for free by downloading my new collection today, while the Kindle promotion is ongoing.

Vegan Recipe of the Quarter
This is the awesomest chocolate pudding you will ever eat, especially because it's good for you!

Avocado Chocolate Pudding

1 Avocado
1/4 C. Maple Syrup
1/4 C. Water or Coffee
1/4 C. Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 TBSP. Vanilla Extract
1/4 TSP. Almond Extract

Blend until smooth, and eat it up, yum.

That's all for now. Thanks for reading, and I'll be back at Lughnasadh with more news and nomz.

All the best,
C.S. MacCath