Making the darkness: creating DRACULA

January 29th, 2016
Lieder-Dracula-_120116124_1500 Lieder-Dracula_290116006   Lieder-Dracula_120116X Lieder-Dracula-120116298_1500 Lieder-Dracula-260116042_500 dracula_poster_06_sm Dracula stairs RH Renfield's cell 1 Dracula shelves implements RH Dracula entry 2 RH Harker's dinner Juniper Moore Dracula dinner Dracula costume render Dracula shelves RH1 The cast. The space. The darkness. DRACULA. We created this for the ones who came to share it with us, to enter the story, to walk down the stairs and give their energies and presence to the dark. So many thanks to our patrons, from me and from nerve! [Cast photos: Rick Lieder. Installation photos: Rena Hopkins. DRACULA poster: Antichamber Design.] 

Chaos assembled, beauty emerges

January 2nd, 2016
So it says on the snippet clipped and stuck to my desktop--the actual, physical desktop where I sit every day to write. The chaos of making, when things work or don't, when I try and succeed, when I try and try and fail, when I write a script or a story or a novel: hoping all the while that, if the conditions have been correctly created, and chaos allowed to do what it must, that beauty--hard beauty, fierce beauty, stealthy beauty, strange beauty--will emerge. Lieder_NeglectedGarden May all the chaos of this new year bring all the beauty it can, to all of us, to all the world. [Image: "The Neglected Garden," courtesy Rick Lieder.]  

One big pleasure

December 4th, 2015
Words are pleasure. It's so much fun to be read to, and to read aloud, why don't we do it more often? The audience had a blast, and so did Robert Levy and I, at our KGB reading (listen for yourself!). Levy Koja KGB Datlow photo And a chance to talk about books I love, writers I admire, why I used to laugh at trilogies, with the erudite and down-to-earth Gil Roth for a conversation partner . . . All kinds of fun, this Virtual Memories podcast. bangil [Levy/Koja photo courtesy Ellen Datlow.]

The gentlemen on the road

November 22nd, 2015
It's a lot of fun, creating the bespoke editions of THE BASTARDS' PARADISE: each inscribed with a personal note, and pages from my research materials, then individually bedecked in twine or velvet or torn silk; each with its one-of-a-kind memory box, a cache of the sweet clutter we keep to remind us of times that filled our hearts  . . . And off goes the book on the road to its reader. Lieder-Kathe-Koja-16111525 And the BASTARDS had great fun in NYC, with a launch reading at KGB that concluded with the first scene from UNDER THE POPPY, Istvan reunited with his love, Rupert: because that's what these books are about, those circular leavings and greetings again, the journey that ends, always, with lovers meeting. [Photo: Rick Lieder]  

See you in Paradise

October 25th, 2015
THE BASTARDS' PARADISE preorder link is live: so I may meet you there, sending a book your way, creating a bespoke package for you . . . Creating each one-of-a-kind package, the book wrapped, the mementos chosen, is going to be a huge amount of fun. Illustration Or we may meet at the World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga Springs, in the hallways or at the bar, or at my "Intoxication of Fantasy" gathering, where we'll share the books that make us drunk with pleasure; I know I'll be reading from Riddley Walker and A Dead Man in Deptford. Screen Shot 2015-10-25 at 6.50.56 PM Screen Shot 2015-10-25 at 6.49.46 PM       Or maybe we'll meet at KGB Bar in NYC, where I'll be doing a launch reading of THE BASTARDS' PARADISE on November 18. Screen Shot 2015-10-25 at 6.56.37 PM Or maybe we'll meet when you tell me what you think of something I've written that you've read, whether you loved it or didn't: through Facebook or Twitter or emailing me (kathe AT kathekoja dot com). Fierce readers, friends of the Poppy, lovers of intoxicating prose, get at me, let's have that conversation, let's visit Paradise together.

You get what you pay for

October 16th, 2015
Creators create, that's a given. Words, music, motion, visuals: they make. And appreciators appreciate, when what that creator's made hits and pleases their own receptors: they read, listen, watch, attend; they take part with their energy, because art is a full contact sport. Somewhere in this equation, there's payment. Creators pay with their lives (does that sound melodramatic? A life is made of days and hours; so is art). If you do appreciate a piece of art - if you want it to exist - you should pay for it. The forms that payment can take are varied, and the transaction ought to be satisfying: give till it hurts is bullshit. Give because it's fun. No one has to pay for art. No one has to have art. But if you do want it, then you know what to do: help it happen, make it happen. Pay for it. KatheKoja_2301144