A New LCRW, or, The Dangerous History for Boys and Girls of a Secret
Guide for Men and Women to the Complete Historiography for Dogs and
Cats of the Mind-Blowing Impossibilities of the Ironed Shirts and
Blouses and Multiple Formats of LCRW
Reading by light that is how old?
LCRW in many ways
less and less and a secret
Margaret on Holidays
Welcome to the first snowy day of the season and maybe the start of
Quick. Stop. Quick! Stop. Oh, now we've confused ourselves and
forgotten what all this hullaballula was for. Stop, start. Um.
Maybe you don't believe LCRW has reached issue 21? It only took about
10.75 years. Which is more than enough time to put the kettle on and
find a comfy seat and be ready for when this issue drops in the mailbox.
Also, in Martian, LCRW is only 5 years old. Or 17 Venusian years.
Or, and the staples are starting to ache here, 45 Mercurian years old.
All of this was discovered by our newly young editorial staff
(counting in Martian years) with the handy-dandy Martian Birthday
Calculator built by LCRW 21 contributor Brian Conn. (Let's make it a
meme and crash his site!)
It is unlikely you will reach your first Plutonian birthday. Oh well.
There is News
The new issue of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet, aka LCRW, this
being Number, or No., 21, has gone out into the world.
There are some stunning stories in this one. We know that Karen Joy
Fowler's story from Robot No.20 (http://lcrw.net/fictionplus/
fowlerlastworders.htm) is still finding readers but if you want your
mind blown (and, really, why else are we here?) read Alice Sola Kim's
"The Night and Day War" in LCRW 21.
The Unexpected Angle
There are more ways than you might expect, Horatio old chum, to
procure yourself a copy of this zine. We have gone a little format
crazed around the Pioneer Valley recently. We have not made LCRW art
projects out of leaves and old bike tires (yet, damn snow), but we
have made this issue of the zine available in Formats As Yet Not Seen
by LCRW readers. Or indeed, by Any.
The usual version, saddle-stitched, 60 pages (half-legal [8/5" x
7"]), black and white, has been mailed to subscribers, reviewers, and
stores and is (quick!) available here:
But, (stop!) that isn't all.
There are two other formats available.
1) For the first time ever (unless we count #13: http://lcrw.net/
issues/lcrw13.htm) you can now buy LCRW as a perfectbound paperback.
Talk about a historical document! And, you can pay $10 instead of $5!
Here are the specs:
Perfect binding, 144 pages, 5.83" x 8.26", 60# weight paper, still
black and white, white exterior paper (100# weight), full-color
exterior ink. (We have this beautiful cover by Tatsuro Kiuchi so
we're not taking much advantage of the color option. Maybe next time
-- if we ever do this again.)
And if you like the look of that but would rather have it as an
ebook, that's available too -- you good-looking early-adopting Kindle-
We had some trouble actually finding the download option on Lulu but
we're confident you can:
2) Or, buy it on Fictionwise:
Some of our books have done really well on Fictionwise.com so from
now on we'll add them whenever we can (we may even go back and try
and add older books, you never know).
Once we have a couple of issues of LCRW up there you'll be able to
subscribe to the electronic edition which will make it easier to keep
up with from abroad. We're not sure if the price will stay the same
or not. Maybe. Perhaps.
And while futzing about Fictionwise, we noticed they can zap you a
copy of The Best of LCRW:
Also, you can verry easily subscribe to the original edition of LCRW
We have been asked if buyers have to use Paypal to get LCRW. The
answer is: No. You can send us cash or checks using this page:
Also, we have purchased zines and other things through our Paypal
account but without using Paypal -- it draws directly from the bank.
Places you can see us and the books: The Washington Post Holiday Book
insert. Ooh! Venus! Bitch! Conjunctions! F&SF! (Check the
classifieds!) Jubilat! AWP in NYC (the book fair is open to the
public on Saturday, Feb. 2, drop by if you can, it'll be huge),
Harvard/Vericon, Jan 25 - 27, (http://www.vericon.org).
Most fun: review Laurie J. Marks' Water Logic on your blog, in your
national magazine, or wherever and we will send you some tea!
This is one of the best big fantasy series we've read and it's the
sort we want more of. It's political, engrossing, epic, and intimate.
Tor published the first two volumes in the series and we are very
proud to see the series continued. Can't wait for #4.
Ok. So, Stephen King (great writer and no doubt a lovely guy) and
some others (do they read A Public Space? Strange Horizons?) think
that the short story is up the creek. We beg to differ.
We recommend that anyone who feels the story is D.E.A.D. give The
Best of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet a shot. This anthology has
a ton of new writers who are quite happy to stretch the format, remix
it, go with the historical view, or just ignore everything that's
John Kessel's new collection is going to the galley printer so will
be zooming out to the reviewers of the world in a couple of weeks.
We're printing a short hardcover run and the usual good amount of
paperbacks (enough for John to upgrade his jetpack) so if you want a
hardcover, maybe go reserve one here:
We are a little buried in Year's Best reading but here are a few
things from the other stacks.
Doug Lain and M.K. Hobson have (re)started Diet Soap: http://
Microcosm have a new issue of Doris: http://
Very much worth ordering (for $1!) is the You Can Work Any 100 Hours
Per Week You Want (In Your Underwear)!! Zine
Whores of Mensa #2 by Ellen Lindner, Mardou, & Jeremy Dennis
Alex Holden's Magic Hour: http://poopsheet.ecrater.com/category.php?
Sarah Becan's Monkeynauts (and a link to her site): http://
Alex Robinson's Lower Regions is something completely unexpected and
brilliant from one of our fave comic book writers -- if you haven't
read Box Office Poison put this on your reading list now:
Lower Regions is a wordless comic inspired by Dungeons & Dragons and
just hilarious -- and, of course, is more than that:
Also, Top Shelf (like everyone else in the world!) is having a
seasonal sale -- free samplers abound:
https://www.bonnydoonvineyard.com/ (apparently -- horrid non-
navigable (but pretty...) Flash site)
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At last The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The Black Dossier is
out (we found it at Newbury Comics http://www.newburycomics.com) from
Alan Moore and compatriots. Physically it's a thing of wonder --
inserts, different paper stocks and page designs for different
sections (there are some weird long lines that aren't the easiest
thing in the world to read) and 3D glasses.
Moore's obsessions kind of get the better of the story but if you
believe the getting there is the more interesting part, you'll love it.
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A couple of months ago we were Very Happy to receive an advance copy
of Eric Felten's How's Your Drink?: Cocktails, Culture, and the Art
of Drinking Well.
This is a book we've been waiting years for! Felten writes a column
about drinks (and drinking, famous and infamous old drunks, &c.) in
the Wall Street Journal and it's worth buying the paper just for it.
We've tried more than a few of the cocktails in this book, but the
real pleasure is in Felten's writing. He goes for the stories behind
the drinks, tracks down cocktail inventors, and makes drinking fun
instead of a challenge. Buy two: one to read and one you don't mind
getting splashed with simple syrup.
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More music than books: certain people would like to point you to the
new Magnetic Fields album coming in January and a tour:
Also with the new album (missed the tour, darn it) are the Squirrel
Nut Zippers. Hope it's as fun as it used to be:
less and less and less -- in dollars
Yes, the dollar is in the whole. Time we all moved to Canada,
Australia (maybe we will just stay there in Jan. '09 when we go to
teach Clarion South), Europe, Japan, Somewhere.
Anyway, secret sale for readers anywhere in this world -- as long as
you use the shipping button:
We recommend that readers on other worlds buy our books on Fictionwise.
1) order any two books by December 20, 2007.
2) tell us in the comment field which other title (book, zine,
chapbook @ the same price or less) you would like Free.
3) we mail them to you.
4) we are all happy.
And: due to the snow and the upcoming KGB Reading (Matt Cheney!) and
this Thanksgiving holiday day thing we may be a bit slow but we will
Work Hard to Send Out Your Stuff ASAP.
Remember books are shipped Media Mail (which will get slower as the
holidays approach) unless you upgrade to Priority Mail
Lastly: if you are living in the decadent west and have decided you
have too many tchotchkes (although can one ever have enough books?)
please consider gifts in your name instead of another crappy piece of
made-by-slaves plastic crap:
For one more week you can get one of these:
or try shopping somewhere like this: http://veganstore.com
Our interns have been busy recently. You can follow Michael's
Literary Beer (and Cider) progress here: http://lcrw.net/wordpress/?
And here's something from our other intern, Margaret Kinney:
It is holiday time. People will be telling you that you, that we,
have forgotten the true meaning of Christmas. They may mean Jesus, or
pure giving or love, or something vague like that. Nowadays, they
will also be telling you that, by forgetting this meaning and
engaging instead in an orgy of materialism, you are destroying the
environment and contributing to our wasteful, consumerist culture.
But more people will be telling you that Christmas is a time for
giving, abundant giving, and that you need to come to their store and
spend, spend, spend on whatever it is that will assuredly make you
and everyone you love so happy. And I believe them. And so do you.
And we will buy things and wrap them in wasteful, shiny papers, and
set them in heaps until we unwrap them together and glow with
happiness just like the ads promised. Those naysayers above offer
various reasons for this; we are sinful, greedy, taken in by modern
temptations, we are shortsighted, our culture is irredeemably
materialistic. Yes, probably. But maybe there is something else.
Evolutionary psychology is a relatively recent and still not widely
accepted branch of study. It holds that evolutionary pressures have
shaped our minds as well as our bodies, which doesn�t seem too
controversial by itself. But it becomes offensive to many of those
who have heard of it at all, when it intrudes too far into the mind
and explains away a rather stunning array of behavior. Mind-body
split, Descartes and all that. In any case, the basis of much of our
human behavior, according to the theory, is reciprocal altruism, the
basis of that kin selection. The latter meaning you will help those
who share your genes, even at great personal expense, the former that
you will help non-relatives with the expectation that they will pay
you back eventually. Thus love is really just concern for your genes,
acts of love really acts on their behalf. The mother sacrificing
herself for kids who share half her genes, etc. Altruism is disguised
self-interest. And so on. It�s all very complicated. Many seemingly
ephemeral aspects of human nature can be elucidated by this theory.
But people are resistant to it, sometimes hugely. An anthropologist
once attempted to refute the whole of it by telling me about her
friend who said he secretly loved his adopted child more than his
biological one. Anthropologists generally abhor evolutionary
psychology, I think, because it takes the emphasis off of cultural
explanations. Culture being what they study. Others simply shy away
from such concrete explanation for sacred, special phenomena like
love. Doubtless culture and consciousness have a huge effect on every
aspect of our behavior, and mitigate many instincts. But it seems
extreme to deny any non-cultural explanations, or even to deny a
large role to the millions of years of shaping that our brains have
So maybe it�s not nonsense, and maybe not really that offensive. For
example, Christmas. Sure it�s largely a cultural product, dependent
on tradition and our modern consumerism. And Christmas feelings are
far from scheming. But part of the reason that the whole Christmas
ritual, in its modern, not terribly Jesus-centric way, remains so
powerfully satisfying and alluring, may be that it appeals to a deep-
seated instinct in us. What is it, really, after all, but a very
pure, artificial enactment of kin selection and reciprocal altruism?
I give you a gift, you give me one, we are beholden to each other.
The more we give the better, the more beholden. We are connected. In
one of the most basic human ways. Yes? Why shouldn�t our lizard
brains be thinking such things, even as our consciousnesses are taken
up by tingly satisfaction and fellow-feeling? Maybe, the more we
understand this aspect of our feelings, the better we can control
them, the better we can restrain ourselves and pacify all those
annoying, if correct, doomsday environmentalists and anti-
materialists. Who knows? Thoughts?
We have moved. Maybe you know this? Here is the new address again,
just in case:
Small Beer Press
150 Pleasant St., #306
Easthampton, MA 01027
Wonder what we forgot?
More maunderings here: http://lcrw.net/wordpress/
Thanks for reading.
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