Warning and qualification:
Anyone hoping for some juicy content should look elsewhere. There are so many people and others who have a genuinely fascinating relationship with Crandolin, but the novel is obdurate, insisting: “All my relationships are strictly confidential”.
So who’s saying what, and why here?
Any novel with a healthy amount of self-respect and, if not necessarily a wish to jump into a relationship with you, the reader, at least some empathy for you--deserves no buttings in by others when you meet.
Though it is a mercy whenever an author is reduced in a novel, to a name-tag and observant silence, the power of the novel might not be understood. People to whom the author is indebted might read into the lack of Acknowledgments, churlishness.
So here, safely out of sight of Crandolin, I wish to thank some to whom I am indebted.
(Out of respect for the novel’s privacy and their own, the names with the least particulars after them are in some cases, hiding the most I haven’t told.)
Ellen Datlow (the Good Witch to so many, and what a wicked wand she wields)
Keith Brooke (the Saviour)
Rachel Edidin (the valiant Knightessa)
Hal Duncan (I expect to be ice-skating with you when g.w. causes h. to f.o.)
Christopher Conn Askew, the outstanding and unclassifiable artist with a weakness for history and books. He painted the cover in an act of mad generosity, but he has much better things to do. Chris not only undertook an amazing amount of research to make this bespoke cover fit perfectly, including reading Crandolin; but he created something that is so lovely that the author would be a fool to think that if people are attracted to the book, it’s because of the beauty inside.
Kathleen Jennings, another favourite artist who has a droll sense of humour and an ability, as only the best do, to show so much in so few lines. She also read Crandolin, and in this Chômu Press edition there is a special treat, thanks to her: the after-the-feature cartoon. In some bright future, let there be editions in languages I can’t understand, with Kathleen’s illustrations that speak to everyone.
Other readers who gave generously of time and thoughtfulness: Steve Aylett, Marilyn Pride, Leone Britt, Vera Nazarian, and Lucius Shepard.
Others who should be awarded Orders (some with an additional Star of the Lent Shoulder): Brenda Vallance, Tom Dann, Ron Serdiuk, Ellen Kushner, Marcus Ng, Simon Brown, Claude Lalumière, Marc Laidlaw, Lucy Kempton, Laird Barron, Alice C.E. Bauer, Cat Sparks, Jeffrey Ford, Jamie Shanks, Jayaprakash Sathyamurthy, Adam Browne, Janine Bajus, Timmi Duchamp, Alisa Krasnostein, Kaaron Warren, Lewis P. Morley, Lee Battersby, Jonathan Monroe (not you or you, but you), Nurduran Duman, Richard Glatz, Jeff Sypeck; Borderlands Books in San Francisco and Pulp Fiction in Brisbane, and PS Publishing, Charles Tan, Cheryl Morgan and Bill Congreve for services to writers and readers; Tom Jaine for same, including services to pigs who have good taste in literature (in packing for Eternity, remember: Without a Prospect book, Eternity will feel like a lifetime)
Linda Carr (who has catered to my book designing wonts for years)
a great helva-maker whose identity shall remain a Secret
Four great editors who I hope to be lucky enough to work with again: Ellen Datlow, Jed Hartman, Rudy Rucker
& at Chômu Press, Quentin S. Crisp, who gave me the best time I’ve ever had with a book. It’s a bloody shame that he is such a stimulating, generous, anal-retentive and considerate editor—not to mention, fascinating person. If I weren’t so selfish, this would be an apology for Crandolin having cut so deeply into his time and thought-space as Quentin S. Crisp, whose fiction is unforgettably poignant, thoughtful, and such a pleasure to read—lucid, unpretentious, and yet surprising and always unpedestrian; he has also tossed off some of the finest essays without thinking “I’m an essayist” any more than he would, “I’m a philosopher”.
Crandolin is too snooty to be satisfied with being published as samizdat, and the author of Crandolin has unaggressive tendencies. So it would have sunk in the permafrost but for the one who calls himself the bEast. That Crandolin is published, and by the perfect publisher for it, Chômu Press—is due to that author who is like no other:
the moustached matchmaker, Joseph S. Pulver, Sr.
To Joe and to all the other generous people above, you could all be adequately self-obsessed, yet you continue to operate at an obsolete level of generosity that conflicts with your own careers. No wonder robots and / or programs are destined to replace you.
Digesting any acknowledgements list
beyond a listing of oneself is a task too like digesting a bowlful of suctioned-off bellyfat. So if I the author have missed you who have helped me (and you reside on Earth, sorry Asteroid *ians—this isn’t your moment to shine), and you would have liked being mentioned, I am sorry (not to mention amazed). For any people who feel tainted by association because they are listed, please drop me a line and you will be cleansed from the list. As to the curdled text and indigestible gristle in Crandolin, no one should be blamed but me.
Isn’t it over yet!?
A sincerely modern apology to the person I would have dedicated Crandolin to: Abhijit Bhattacharya (not you, but you). Though you ordered your novel cooked as you like it: So well done, it’s Depressing Dostoevskian--it turned out: smoking but only lightly bleak. So please accept Crandolin as an amuse bouche, and savour the pleasure of disappointment.