Thursday, April 23, 2020

Chicanonautica: Latinx Rising Lives!

The planet was in quarantine when I wrote this. It was like we were all sealed in a giant crysalis, undergoing metamorphosis.

I found myself glad that I didn't have a book coming out from a big publisher in 2020. With bookstores locked down, it would be doomed to failure, as least as the publishing world defines it. Even with an insane social media blitz, it would be damnear impossible for a new book to sell enough copies in the first few weeks to not be written off as a loss.

I didn't have any books due out, but I do have stories due to appear . . . soon.

These are with small publishers; the rules are different, because less money is involved. No publicity budget. But then, in times of economic crisis, they tend go into limbo. These projects are delayed, maybe for years.

Sometimes they vanish without so much as a puff of smoke. Books, magazines, often entire publishing companies can suddenly cease to exist. Poof!

I hadn't heard anything in a while. Getting worried.

Then good news came via e-mail.

The long awaited reprinting of Latin@ Rising, under the updated title Latinx Rising (the publisher of the original, @ edition went belly up even though the book was selling) will be coming out in June.

It will include “Flying Under the Texas Radar with Paco and Los Freetails,” the origin story of my Paco Cohen Mariachi of Mars character, that along with his adventures that appeared in Analog (“The Rise and Fall of Paco Cohen and the Mariachis of Mars” and “Death and Dancing in New Las Vegas”) will be incorporated into an epic novel about Paco, after I finish Zyx; or, Bring Me the Brain of Victor Theremin.

Latinx Rising can be pre-ordered, but you may want to wait for the Kickstarter, that will also happen in June, to raise money “to pay the authors.”

We authors really like it when we get paid. And it doesn't happen as often as you think.

And that wasn't all the good news!

There was a planned follow-up to Rising that was to be called The Latinx Archive; it will also be coming out, at a later date, under the title Speculative Fiction for Dreamers: A Latinx Anthology.

Names keep being changed. Guess we're having an identity crisis. As if there weren't enough crises going on . . .

Speculative Fiction will have a new story by me, “Those Rumors of Cannibalism and Human Sacrifice Have Been Greatly Exaggerated,” based on futuristic visions inspired by my recent travels in Aztlán.

Also, I know that latinx is controversial, and speculative fiction sounds a tad highfalutin' for a down- and-dirty Chicano like me, but I've found that if I want to get published, it's best not argue about what they think l am. So I've been a cyberpunk and an Afrofuturist, the Father of Chicano Science Fiction, or whatever they feel comfortable calling me. I'll just go on being me and let the academics worry about the labels.

Meanwhile, I'm to busy getting ready for survival in the post-COVID-19 world.

Ernest Hogan will be making a helluvalota noise over the interwebs when Latinx Rising comes out and the Kickstarter begins.

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