Friday, June 22, 2012


Chicanonautica (via La Bloga) is all about science fiction, evolution, revolution, chicanos, latinos, Zapatismo, and the decolonialization of our visions of the future.

It's not just writers: It can happen in movies, with reality catching up fast:

Why not? Hollywood has done its own take on Zapata:

And the leading Chicano Elvis-impersonator has endorsed the Zapatista movement:

So maybe we should let Subcomandante Marcos have his say:

With the globalization/decolonialization of science fiction, and multinational corporate sponsorship, this may just be the beginning:

Friday, June 15, 2012


Just when you thought is was safe to read again, it's baaaaaaaack!

I'm talking about my most infamous story, The Frankenstein Penis, once again available for sale in the anthology Love That Never Dies: Erotic Encounters With the Undead editied by M. Christian. It's an ebook, and a paperback is in the works!

This is probably a good time for me explain why I wrote such a bizarre story. Fortunately, I've done it before here at Mondo Ernesto. The saga of the story can be found in And the Great Penis Rip-Off Goes On, and I discuss the two student films – and have links to them so you can watch them online – in The Frankenstein Penis: The Movie(s), and More.

And even if you own Semiotext(e) SF, the May/June 1990 issue of Penthouse Hot Talk, the Brazilian Futuro Probido, or the unauthorized Greek cyberpunk anthology, you should buy Love That Never Dies. I've made some slight changes for this new edition for you obsessive types of look for. So reading it on Scribd is no longer enough.

There are also stories by editor M. Christian, publisher Jean Marie Stine, and Chris De Vito. 

Chris published a thoroughly deranged magazine back in the Nineties called Fuck Science Fiction (yeah, it was as crazy as it sounds). He also published – in a one-shot called Proud Flesh a sequel to The Frankenstein Penis, called The Dracula Vagina.

No, The Dracula Vagina is not currently available. I guess all you fans of this degeneracy have something to look forward to . . .

Monday, June 11, 2012


Pardon my gonzo here. The memories keep popping – exploding. I'm struggling to keep up. This is going to be more of a Picasso portrait than an academic landscape.

Hell yeah, he was an influence on me. When I found his work in science fiction anthologies in the library, they stood out from the pack and stuck in my memory. It was in one of his stories where I saw the term “son of a bitch” in print for the first time. I identified with The Martian Chronicles – when we moved from East L.A. to West Covina, our house was on a tract that was surrounded by empty, ploughed fields – it could have been Mars.

Then they showed us this film at Willowood Junior High, Ray Bradbury: Story of a Writer. That office with walls full of books seemed like paradise (my house looks like that now – there are even lots of masks). That was the first time I got the idea that I wanted to be a writer, that I could be a writer – a dangerous thing to happen in an adolescent brain.

He seemed to be everywhere: Television, magazines, books . . . and he seemed to be on top of it all.

Then I found out that one of the weird science fiction magazines I was reading was published a block and a half away from my house. I knew the editor's son from school. My neighborhood had its own sci-fi publisher – anything was possible!

William L. Crawford – and his wife Peggy – published and sold books as well as magazines, and soon got into putting on science fiction conventions. Another world to explore. And Ray Bradbury was there.

Bill and Peggy knew just about every science fiction writer I could name. They were friends with Ray Bradbury, and others. At their conventions, I not only got to hear him speak, but sometimes had dinner at the same table with him and the likes of A. E. Van Vogt, Edmond Hamilton, Leigh Brackett, George Clayton Johnson . . . my teenage mind was blown.

Living in California in the early Seventies, Ray Bradbury seemed to be speaking everywhere. Through both fandom and school I attended many of his lectures. They were always electrifying experiences – he had incredible energy that could get great, crowded halls of people excited. He was like his own fabled Mr. Electrico. I always left feeling that I could go out and do anything.

At the first Mount San Antonio College Writer's Day, he and Harlan Ellison arrived late – there was almost a riot.

Though known as a science fiction writer, he never let that limit him. He wasn't intimidated by Hollywood, New York, fine art, or “literature.” He could put down presidents before it became a national pastime. He was always trying something new, working in new venues.

And he was always a guy who liked comics and monsters.

Once he told me that he had just gotten a rejection slip. Afterwards, I went up and asked to see it.

It's just like the ones they send me,” I said.

He autographed it and gave it to me.

It helped get me through my years of rejection. When I met Emily, I gave it to her. Later she passed it on to another writer friend.

In college, I heard professors talk about him as if he wasn't a “real” writer – that he was a kind of sideshow they would dangle in front of the vulgarians, hoping to pull a gypsy-switch and introduce us to “literature.” I wonder if they ever realized that it was they who were the sideshow.

I am still writing, and facing the future, under the influence of Ray Bradbury.

Friday, June 8, 2012


This time, Chicanonautica, over at La Bloga is about a double feature about Latino art I experienced courtesy of Latinopia and Barrio Dog Productions.

So, here's some background on the Mexican muralist movement:

An update on the state of América Tropical:

Some insight into Chicano aesthetics:

And how it all comes together in art the cruises the streets:

Monday, June 4, 2012


Yes, I am still writing. It just doesn't seem like it these days. I'm not sure what word would be appropriate: Apocalypse? Revolution? I can't seem to come up with a nifty sci-fi term . . .

The disease still affects me. Fiction bubbles out of the dark reaches of my brain, clogging up my psyche, acting like a dangerous drug. They call it creativity, this monster that runs my life.

Unfortunately, like crime, it does not pay, so I have a part-time job that sucks up some of my energy and time. When you're a part-timer, your schedule is fluid and irregular. This makes the fantasy of being the clock-punching, working writer damnear impossible – you have to go at it hit-and-run, like guerrilla warfare.

Combine that with the fact that I'm easily distracted, and I keep finding myself up to my ears in fascinating weirdness, and it's a minor miracle that I get anything done.

Over the last decade or so I've found that it takes me longer to write short stories. This is partly because there are no markets out there clamoring to buy them for huge wads of cash. I keep coming up with ideas that I have to put aside because they go through radical changes, diverging from their original inspiration, making me rethink them as I go along. What starts out avant-garde ends up retro-steampunkish when it's finally published.

At least I can report that after writing a story, I can publish it faster. No more writing something and having to wait ten or twenty years for a market to come along.

As insane as it seems, I'm working on two novels: a futuristic bullfighting dystopia, and a fantasy about the PreColumbian ball game. Neither have any hope of selling to the traditional publishers, but I've given up that decadent scene. The bullfighting book takes top priority, since it has been percolating in my subconscious for years and is giving me an excuse to be an online aficionado. The ball game book is going to require more research – there is literally a lost world to explore.

Both of these projects have sports themes. I never intended to become a time travel/archeological/gonzo sports writer. These things just sort of happen. Fate gets imaginative. That's when you know you're really in trouble.

What I'm not doing is worrying about being commercial. I don't care about the hot new trends.  I don't want to write what “they” are all buying. It used to be you'd go to a convention and the writers would all be saying you were crazy or doomed if you weren't working on military science fiction, sexy vampires, and/or YA wizard epics. All those are fizzling now. I don't know what the next one will be, and I don't really care.

There's another apocalypse going on out there. Bookstores are going the way of the dinosaur. Houghton Mifflin has declared bankruptcy. Expect other publishers to follow. How can you be “commercial” when the infrastructure that supported all those conceits is collapsing?

Still, I keep on writing. It makes me feel good. I'm a happy addict, and I am determined to have fun.

I figure that if I'm having fun, sooner or later people will want to buy in on it. This delusion keeps me going.