New Arizona Trail essay published on Gore-Tex®…

Posted in Uncategorized on July 13, 2016 by Austin Aslan

I’m thrilled with the reception my latest Arizona Trail essay is receiving on the Gore-Tex® “Experience More” online platform. Link to it through the Gore-Tex® Facebook page, and if you “like” what you read, let them know! Thanks!


Brexit indigestion

Posted in Uncategorized on June 24, 2016 by Austin Aslan

So, if you’re like me, you probably have been curious about the Brexit but not all that invested in thinking about it, because, let’s face it, the referendum was bound to fail and everyone would stop talking about it the next day, and, really, what they decide to do over there is their business. But I listened to the results coming in on the BBC last night gathering a dawning realization that history was in the works. And not in a good way. Forget the short term drama playing out in the markets. In my opinion, what we’re seeing here is a populist and nativist movement throwing facts aside and celebrating destabilization over stabilization for the sheer gut pleasure of wrecking havoc and chaos, fueled mostly by racism and protectionist tendencies in the wake of a migrant crisis, and also a genuine frustration at always having one’s fringe opinions (BUT ALSO one’s very mainstream kitchen table finances) marginalized and scoffed at. If that sounds familiar, it should. Trump and Bernie have both tapped into that same discontent and attraction to “burn it all down” as response to having your fringe ideas and your real money troubles constantly ignored. This is a dangerous and scary sentiment, and the strength of it out there in the world is cause for great concern. It’s 2016. Really? How disappointing and regrettable. But there it is. That this can go down in the UK is a serious wake up call that it can go down anywhere, even here. Our political system needs to adopt a way to make political minorities feel valued and respected, and quickly. This is a problem we all need to solve, on both sides of the aisle. I remain convinced that Trump is such a buffoon and pathological narcissist as to squander his chance to properly channel this thread in the US into real power, but that’s not going to kill the movement, and we’re in for a series of even scarier, more savvy candidates down the line who will learn how to really harness racial fear and nativism and isolationalism, and create higher and higher stakes for every successive election, until the dominance of ration and reason even in our own nation finally does snap and the high wire act plummets to its tragic and inevitable conclusion. And this is the world my kids will have to raise their kids in. I’m so disappointed in how cyclical our worst societal tendencies are proving to be. 2020 is the new 1930. WTF, world? I can only hope we learn from Britain’s mistake, and we avoid the dog’s temptation to chase down the car and actually catch it. Because, Jesus, you’re a dog and you just caught a car. Congratulations–now what?

Our night sky, and our wonder, are going extinct

Posted in Uncategorized on June 10, 2016 by Austin Aslan

Living in the nation’s proud first-designated “Dark Sky City,” I benefit immensely from enjoying a robust relationship with our planet’s view of the cosmos. I think this issue is deeply important, but so many people are acclimated to no longer having a clue what they’re missing and what’s at stake. And so many fellow Flagstaff residents take our nights for granted and complain when the city council won’t bring in an arena or more shopping malls or car dealerships. The AZ legislature is poised to renege on a promise to ban lighted billboards on our remote highways. The night sky isn’t just a pretty landscape where it’s available, though. Humanity’s very ability to collectively wonder about our place in the universe is compromised. This is a bigger deal than it might first seem. The stars are quickly going extinct from our awareness and our consciousness. We’re content to let wardens like Neil de Grasse Tyson be our gatekeepers to wonder. But each one of us across the globe should be able to be reminded on a nightly basis that we’re indeed small, and yet miraculous. We lose our night through choices, not necessity. We should all be more passionate about bringing it back to our neighborhoods. We really must protect what Dark we have left. Anyway, this is a good article on HuffPost today that glimpses into the issue…

Opal House2

This is what the night sky looks like above my house. Did you even know this was possible? What does it look like where you live?

Writing for Gore-Tex® “Experience More”

Posted in Uncategorized on May 24, 2016 by Austin Aslan

I’m beyond thrilled to announce that GORE-TEX® has asked me to join their “Dream Team” of adventure writers and photographers to collaborate on a major new creative endeavor for the online GORE-TEX® “Experience More” platform. For starters, I’ll be publishing a number of essays and photographs recounting my solo thru-hike of the Arizona Trail last fall. This is an incredible honor and privilege for me. I’m very proud to be partnering with the most amazing line-up of outdoor professionals. This feels like an awesome affirmation of the unique journey I undertook, and it’s a real hoot to officially be labeled a professional adventurer! I can’t wait to watch this project unfold and see where it leads. Please check out the first essay, now live, here. I’d love it if you’d click on the little blue “F” and “Twitter bird” icons that appear to the right margin of the article and post the link to your social media accounts! Traffic is destiny! And then come back here and let me know what you think.


Spring ’16 YA Treasure Hunters! Welcome!

Posted in Uncategorized on March 28, 2016 by Austin Aslan


Orange Team

Far out! You’ve hunted down Austin Aslan during the Spring 2016 YA Scavenger Hunt! Welcome! You may have arrived here via PAULA STOKES. (Or my Team Orange #YASH host ELLE COSIMANO.) Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to learn about the hunt. And if you’re experiencing any technical glitches, don’t worry, Glitch Happens. Pop over here for your pill.

(((Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian’s permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by Sunday, April 3rd at noon Pacific time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.)))

I would love to keep blabbering on and sit down with you over some tea, maybe share an episode of Star Trek: Next Generation with you, but I realize you have, like 144 (ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY-FOUR) other blogs to visit in the next couple of days before you WIN ALL THE GLORY!!! So, I’ll keep this thing moving along…

Oh, wait, real quick. Do me the ginormous honor of following my twitter feed. I promise, it doesn’t bite. @Laustinspace. Do it. DO IT NOW!

And did you go right ahead and order my novels for the to be reading? Yeah, you might want to do that. Just, um, yeah, click here. Yeah. (*whispers* YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO!)



I’m very excited to host Melissa, the YA author of ARROWS which released from Random House / Delacorte Press, January 2016. ARROWS is a modern cupid story set in present-day Wisconsin combining the fantastical elements of Greek mythology with the contemporary drama of MTV’s Teen Mom.

And without further ado, here’s a link to her bonus material!

Follow Melissa Gorzelanczyk’s board ARROWS novel on Pinterest.


Best of luck, Melissa, with all of your authorly success! And best of luck to you, dear treasure seeker. Win, win, win!

Before you scurry off to visit the next author on the hunt, the very frightening and bone-chilling RIN CHUPECO, please feel free to peek around my entire site for a while and follow the links to my two YA survival-disaster sci fi novels, THE ISLANDS AT THE END OF THE WORLD and THE GIRL AT THE CENTER OF THE WORLD. And please leave a comment below, let me know you stopped by!

Honored to be invited back for the Spring ’16 YA Scavenger Hunt!

Posted in Uncategorized on March 22, 2016 by Austin Aslan

7b1b9-scavengerhuntIt’s time for another whirlwind adventure. 180 authors! 180 book giveaways! At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize–one lucky winner will receive one signed book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for a blink of the eye! (The Spring YA Scavenger Hunt goes live on Tuesday, March 29th at 12 pm Pacific Time and comes down on Sunday, April 3rd at noon Pacific time.)

Orange TeamGo to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are NINE contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! I am a part of the ORANGE TEAM this spring, but there are  NINE teams totalRED, BLUE, GOLD, GREEN, ORANGE, TEAL, PURPLE, SILVER, & PINK- each with 20 authors. for a chance to win a whole different set of signed books!

If you’d like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page.

YA Review: The Islands at the End of the World

Posted in Uncategorized on March 16, 2016 by Austin Aslan

Building Diverse Bookshelves

Title:The Islands at the End of the World20783812-_uy200_
Author:Austin Aslan (he’s here on WP, and he writes back, guys!)
Specs: 355 pages of story, followed by an excerpt from a sequel.
Publishing Info: Wendy Lamb Books, 2014

Note: I saw this a few times at the library here in town, picked it up, and put it back.  But last time, my wife is the one who handed it to me and said, “I think you should read this one.”  She always gives good recommendations, so I decided to try it after all. And I’m so glad I did!  I follow MixedRaceFeministBlog both here on WordPress and on Facebook, whose articles and comments have started opening my eyes to the perils, annoyances, frustrations, and isolation that mixed race peoples across the world suffer from at the hands of society.  This book helped me to understand more.


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