The Word-Hoard: Cavalcade

December 17, 2018 Bushi 2

Cavalcade n. 1. A line of people, walking, on horses, or in vehicles, who are moving slowly as part of a ceremony. 2. A number of important people, things, or events appearing or happening in a short space of time.   “Cavalcade” originally referred to a horseback procession, and shares […]

Broken Sword

An Introduction to the Epic Poul Anderson

December 14, 2018 Bushi 16

The illustrious Poul Anderson is another one of those scifi/fantasy grandmasters who you’ve probably never heard of if you were born after 1980. Although he was writing until his death in 2001, he seems to have fallen into obscurity in the later decades of his career, which is a damn […]


The Lost Virtue of Lean Prose

December 12, 2018 Bushi 19

As much as I talk about older scifi and fantasy, I like some contemporary fiction. I’m a fan of the Witcher stories. I like Harry Potter (is that contemporary anymore?). Hell, I was even on the Game of Thrones bandwagon back before HBO picked it up. But looking at a lot […]


The Word-Hoard: Leonine

December 10, 2018 Bushi 6

Leonine adj. Of, relating to, suggestive of, or resembling a lion.   “Leonine,” from the Latin leo and leoninus, isn’t a difficult word, per say. It did catch my eye in my recent reading of The Swordsman of Mars, however, because it’s so scarcely used compared to many other bestial descriptors. Bovine, ovine, aquiline, […]


ChristmaSFF: A Santa Story

December 7, 2018 Bushi 4

When I was a kid, I loved the old Rankin and Bass holiday specials (I mean I gobbled up all their stuff, but). They produced a number of Santa-related animations, many still beloved today. The misers were great, memorable characters, but for my money the one that stood out was The […]


Classic Scifi: The Omega Man, Logan’s Run, Westworld

December 5, 2018 Bushi 0

I’ve been catching up on some classic cinema, thanks to offerings by Amazon Prime Video. I haven’t been that impressed, honestly, but it’s all long-overdue required watching. Let me share a few thoughts and impressions as an expert SFF critic and navelgazer. 1. The Omega Man This one was actually […]


The Pile

December 3, 2018 Bushi 9

So I just bought another pile of books. And I’m in like month…two? Three…? …of working my way through Witch World. I like me some Andre Norton, but man, this thing just isn’t grabbing my attention. What a slog. Meanwhile I’m also working on The Swordsman of Mars, and I’ve identified […]


The Cost of Magic

November 30, 2018 Bushi 21

I’ve been thinking lately about magic. In fiction, its treatment varies widely, but I feel like there are a few generalizations I can make. First, I don’t agree with Gita (or Orson Scott Card) that magic must have a price or else be rendered uninteresting. Of course magic should have limitations. […]


John Bellairs and the Face of Magic

November 28, 2018 Bushi 17

I’ve been thinking about magic lately, and I’ve got a post brewing…but it’s not quite ready yet. It did bring me back around to thinking about John Bellairs, however, and his The Face in the Frost. In case you’re unfamiliar with them, Bellairs was mainly a writer of young adult gothic […]


The Word-Hoard: Barbican

November 26, 2018 Bushi 0

Barbican n. The outer defense of a castle or walled city; especially a double tower above a gate or drawbridge.    This feels to me like another Jack Vance word – that dude was always throwing around obscure architecture words and vehicle words and such. “Barbican” fits snugly into that […]