Vol. 30, Jul 2010

Read Me First…

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1632 Fiction

A Study in Redheads
"Paul, we need to talk!" Paul Kindred, managing editor of the Grantville Times, stifled a groan when he heard that voice. Betsy Springer came toward him at a dead run, her red ponytail bouncing like an excited rooster's tail, and would have collided with him had he not stepped aside at the last minute. "Hello, [...]

A Tale of Two Alberts
The Hand of the Lord . . . is all in the timing. Prologue Grantville, 1997 As they crossed the state line into West Virginia, Claudette said, "Albert Green, I did not marry you to be stuck in some backwoods little brown church in the dell. If I'd wanted to live in the hills I could have [...]

Blaise Pascal and the Adders of Apraphul
Grantville Power Plant, November 11th, 1634Bill Porter staggered out of the staff lunchroom in the Grantville Power Plant as if he'd been cast out against his will or was in fear for his life . . . or possibly both. He caught sight of Julie Drahuta walking serenely down the corridor and held up his hands as [...]

Hair of the Dog Or The Continuing Adventures of Harry Lefferts
Late December 1633Near the border between France and Spanish NetherlandsSieur Chretien de la Roche awoke in misery. The bolster under his throbbing head seemed particularly hard this morning, and for some reason it was damp. A timeless interval passed, and it came to his attention that the entire bed was hard, much harder than he [...]

Historically Well Preserved
Grantville, July 1635 "I arrived in February," Robert Herrick said politely.Mistress Sophie Thomas, her eyes fixed on the refreshment table, walked between him and Mistress Alannie Clark, bearing a tray of sandwiches and coffee.He sent a mental prayer of thanks in the general direction of the deity for this timely interruption of the conversation and [...]

Introduction to the Universe Annex
As many of you know, I was the editor of Jim Baen's Universe, a general-interest F&SF electronic magazine. JBU suspended publication in April of 2010, after running for four years. To the extent possible, I wanted to salvage some features of JBU by transferring them to this magazine, especially the regular columns and the short [...]

Nor the Moon By Night
Fulda, March 1635The sergeant knocked on the door of the Benedictine priory.Not the door of the big Abbey of Fulda. The door of the little convent of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. A door upon which, he thought, he had knocked altogether too many times recently.The lay sister who served as the gatekeeper flicked [...]

The Boat
Grantville, Sunday 6 April, 1634George Watson stubbed out the cigarette he'd just finished and reached for his glass of beer. He sipped his drink while he gazed through the window at the shed where he'd kept his speedboat. He still missed his beauty, his Outlaw.When he finished his beer George put the glass down and [...]

Continuing Serials

Northwest Passage, Part Five
November 1633—New Amsterdam Harbor   The two Dutch fregätten floated quietly, wrapped in a white shroud. The dense fog that had settled over the New Amsterdam harbor was both a blessing and a curse. It hid them from potential enemies but made navigation hazardous and obscured what was happening onshore. That something was happening was [...]

No Ship for Tranquebar,  Part Four
Over the Indian Ocean September 27, 1636 The airship sparkled in the early morning light. There was only darkness below, as shadows still shrouded the earth. At almost two miles above the surface, the airship could see the sun rise much earlier than they would see it on the ground. Even now the crew watched [...]

1632 Non Fiction

The Aqualator
Being number 11 in the series"What the up-timers don't know that they know" Fr Nicholas Smithson SJ and Br Johann OSBNumber 11: On Computing, March 1633A feature of the up-time world that many down-timers long for is their electronics. From radios to phonographs, from public address systems to telephones, from calculators to laptops, everyone longs [...]

The Multihull and the Mariner
The conventional sailing ship has a single hull. However, multihulls—two or more hulls joined together by a deck or poles—can be found in the seventeenth century in both the Indian Ocean and the South Pacific.The chief advantage of the multihull is extreme lateral stability, which in turn means that it can carry more sail over [...]

Columns

Time for ReConStruction
It's about that time again! Time for a 1632 mini-convention. This year we'll be at NASFIC/ReConStruction, August 5 - 8, in Raleigh, NC. The website for more information is: http://www.reconstructionsf.org/ (more…)

Time Spike

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Universe Annex

A Logic Named Clement (or Open the Pod Bay Doors, Hal)
His work has from the first been characterized by the complexity and compelling interest of the scientific (or at any rate scientifically literate) ideas which dominate each story. —John Clute, writing in The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction (St. Martin's 1993)That's Hal Clement, all right. Even when I was a kid, we knew when we picked [...]

Lost Worlds
Eric Flint has kindly moved my column, Notes From The Buffer Zone, here from its home at the late lamented Jim Baen's Universe here. I started writing the column when I realized that writers of my generation rarely blogged or wrote columns for anyone. Writers older than me had regular columns, and writers younger than [...]

Summerland Rentals
It was, beyond doubt, the most comfortable waiting room Kirby Foster had ever been in. The wingback chair was soft and inviting, the air conditioning neither too hot nor too cold, and the cup of complimentary coffee—fresh ground mocha java—sweet and light to the exact degree he preferred each. The situation was so relaxing, in [...]