Exploring Near + Far’s Interior Art: Row 2 (Giveaway Day Two)

Art by Mark W. Tripp for Cat Rambo's Near + Far interior

Row 2

This week sees the book getting officially launched on Wednesday. This week I’ll be doing a series of five posts about the interior art. Comment on a post to be entered to win one of three pieces of Near + Far jewelry; comment on all five posts and you’ll be entered five times.

Here’s the second row of pieces. I was talking to someone last night about why it made me so happy to use Mark’s art: he’s been showing it to me for close to two decades and I’ve always wanted to use it to illustrate something.

So, left to right: Image #1, which has a funky little seahorse feel. When looking at Mark’s pieces, I tended to use the older stuff for “Near” stories and newer for “Far”. This one went with VocoBox ™, an early story about what would happen if cats could talk. (And I think it’s fairly accurate in that regard.) My cat is named Raven, much like the cat in the story, and this is my way of preserving him, because he’s been a great cat. :)

Image #2 has a sparse feel to it, and there’s one of those funky little eyes peering out at you. It accompanies the story “Not Waving, Drowning” (a title shamelessly taken from Stevie Smith, because it’s so terrific), which is about the harder side of telepathy, which always seemed to me like a terrible, terrifying superpower.

Image #3 is another earlier one, and it makes me think of the idea of spaceships as living things. It accompanies RealFur, a story about the relationship between people and objects, a theme which gets explored in “Therapy Buddha” as well.

Image #4 accompanies a story that appeared in Talebones, “Memories of Moments, Bright As Falling Stars”. It’s a cypberpunk-influenced story, and one I like a lot for its grungy and sometimes eccentric world.

Image #5 also accompanies a story influenced by the cyberpunk movment, “10 New Metaphors for Cyberspace.” It’s a flash piece, or perhaps a prose poem, depending on your definition, trying to think about how we might have seen cyberspace if Gibson hadn’t shaped it so definitively.

If I picked a favorite from this batch, it would be either #2 or #5. We still haven’t seen the one that I have as a tattoo yet, or the one that I’m thinking about for a new tattoo. ;)

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About Cat

Cat Rambo lives, writes, and teaches by the shores of an eagle-haunted lake in the Pacific Northwest. Her 100+ fiction publications include stories in Asimov's, Clarkesworld Magazine, and Tor.com. Her short story, "Five Ways to Fall in Love on Planet Porcelain," from her story collection Near + Far (Hydra House Books), was a 2012 Nebula nominee. Her editorship of Fantasy Magazine earned her a World Fantasy Award nomination in 2012.
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