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[contests] Results of the steampunk caption contest voting poll

The Baby Killers by Jay Lake

I have now closed the steampunk caption contest voting poll, which has celebrated the release of my steampunk minim opus, The Baby Killers. The contest was for a caption to best fit the following photo:


Pipe, Lime, OR. © 2002, 2010, Joseph E. Lake, Jr.

First prize is an inscribed copy of The Baby Killers, going to madrobins for:

“I admit to its utility,” said Miss Penderghast. “But the steam-powered corset-laundry will not catch on until it can be rendered small enough for the ordinary household.” with 15% of the polling, or 12 Votes.

Runners up are:

shelly_rae: Fortunately the colonoscopy scope has improved in the modern era and no longer requires a team of horses. It just feels that way. (11%, 9 Votes)

cjmarsicano: The Lime Observatory apologizes for the embarrassment caused by an intern pointing our telescope at the nudist beach in the next county. (10%, 8 Votes)

madrobins and cjmarsicano, please contact me with your postal addresses. (I already have shelly_rae’s.) Everyone else, go check out the other contestants if you haven’t done so already. Some funny stuff there!

[contests] Steampunk caption contest

The Baby Killers by Jay Lake

I just received my author copies of The Baby Killers, my new steampunk single-title novella from PS Publishing. In order to celebrate, we’re going to have a caption contest. I’ve chosen one of the more steampunkish photos from my Flickr files, so take that as a theme if you like.

First prize will be a signed copy of the book, additional prizes to be awarded at my discretion. Usual rules apply. I’ll collect captions in comments here (at both and until I get bored with it, then build a voting poll. Please try to limit the length of your entries or they may become truncated in the poll code.

The photo in question:


Pipe, Lime, OR. © 2002, 2010, Joseph E. Lake, Jr.

Creative Commons License

This work by Joseph E. Lake, Jr. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

[contests] METAtropolis contest winner

The winner of my part of the METAtropolis contest is T.E.P., with this submission.


As the Maltese Falcon first proved, there was a lot which modern technology could do to improve upon 19th century commercial sailing ships. But as the world was suddenly thrust into its second age of sail and those yards who still had the skills and materials scrabbled to put hulls in the water, the living fossils of that first age were much in demand. While in the early days they maintained those most delicate tendrils of physical contact between continents once more worlds apart, naval architects, shipwrights and mariners alike all sought to re-learn from those who’d gone before.

T.E.P. wins a copy of the Tor Books edition of METAtropolis, and a big smile from me. Check out the contest page itself for some awfully cool ideas from many other folks.

Bear’s contest here: here.

Toby’s contest here.

John’s contest here.

Karl’s contest here.

[contests] Win a copy of METAtropolis

Metatropolis Cover

As you may already know, the Tor edition of Hugo-nominated shared-world anthology METAtropolis — featuring novellas by Elizabeth Bear, Tobias Buckell, John Scalzi, Karl Schroeder, and me — comes out on June 8th.

We’re having a contest to give away five copies of the book, one on each of our blogs.

Which means after you enter here (contest closes on June 7th and winners will be announced on June 8th), you can enter on the other four author blogs for a pentagonal path to glory. Yes, five chances to win a free book!

For my contest, here’s what you need to do:

Post an image in comments of the city of the future. Show me what a METAtropolis really looks like. Can be a photo, a photoshop, or art. But when you post it, give me a paragraph or more of caption to make it clear what you’re thinking.

So, for example:

Tiltshift of White River Falls power house

In the future, we will all live in small rural ruins at the bottoms of the canyons because we are hiding from the megapodal landsharks that will roam the surface of the Earth from horizon to bloody horizon thanks to the drastic unravelling of John Scalzi’s genetic experiments. The Beverly Hillbillies will be our guide to Nature, and we will all eat Hostess baking products delivered by hoverboard.

I will pick the one that either makes me laugh the hardest or think the hardest. Ideally both.

Bear’s contest here: here.

Toby’s contest here.

John’s contest here.

Karl’s contest here.

(Portions of this post shamelessly nicked from .)

[contests] We have a winner

The latest caption contest voting poll has produced a winner, Kyle Cassidy. His winning entry, with a runaway 20% of the vote:

Nov 26 2009

Mr Lake, the implants will work as we discussed, but it’s my personal belief that no one will take you seriously as a supervillan in that hat

Photo © 2009 M. Lake, all rights reserved. Used with permission.

Kyle, you have scored an ARC of Pinion and a fresh-off-the-press copy of Death of a Starship.

[contests] Flash Fiction open has a winner

Hat by criada

Photographed at the Whatcom Creek Estuary, in Washington State, by .

© 2009. All rights reserved. Reproduced with permission.

The Flash Fiction Open contest [ | LiveJournal ] now has a winner! Jonathan won with “Untitled“, capturing 71 votes out of 162 votes cast. Jonathan, please contact me in comments or via email, and I’ll send you an autographed copy of Green to celebrate your blue hat.

The rest of y’all drop by and read Jonathan’s winning story.

[contests] Flash Fiction Open voting round is here

Hat by criada

Photographed at the Whatcom Creek Estuary, in Washington State, by .

© 2009. All rights reserved. Reproduced with permission.

Per a suggestion from , and with agreement from whose photo this is, I held a flash fiction open round. Using ‘s photo as their inspiration, twenty people wrote a piece of flash (500 words or less).

All of the stories can be read here: [ | LiveJournal ]

I had four celebrity judges read all twenty stories, and give me preliminary rankings. My thanks go out to , , and . Also, thanks and congratulations to everyone who played along. This was so much fun that I’ll do another one of these before too long, I’m sure.

Now it’s time to vote, in the poll here. The five finalist stories are all linked from the poll post, so it’s easy to click through and peruse them. Check it out, and support your favorite.

[contests] Fictional character pickup lines

On Twitter today, I said:

Pondering fictional character pickup lines. John Carter of Mars: “My radium rifle will really make you glow, baby.” Others?

A few answers have filtered in:

@Animakitty: Decompression alarms are going off in my head baby, ‘cuz you just took my breath away.

@etcet “I find your lack of faith… arousing.”

@Rblay I think my robot likes your laptop

@rndrum “Materialize around here often?”

And via Facebook, Jonathan Vos Post: “Sample Caltech pickup line from the all-male era, usually unsuccessful: ‘Would you rather be infra-read or ultra-violated?'”

I think we have the makings of a contest. With, like prizes and stuff. So here it is, the fictional character pickup-line contest. You know what to do, now go to it in comments.

[contests] Photos of Green in the wild

Green Powell’s | Amazon ] is released Tuesday, June 9th. Post or paste your photo of the book in the wild (or on the store shelves or in your hands). Weirder/funnier the better. I’ll host a voting poll in the usual manner, winner to get some signed books from me.

To be eligible for the contest, you must post by Friday, June 12th. Bonus points for posting tomorrow!