I’m curious to know what other science fiction (and/or fantasy and/or Horror) websites people visit regularly. (Besides this one, of course! :))
Most of the websites I visit regularly are listed over in our Links section on the main page, but generally they fall into categories, sometimes one site falling in several categories as listed below.
What about you? Are there any worthy websites you like that aren’t listed here?
The best sources for original science fiction news are those places who make a living reporting it. So I frequently hit up Locus Magazine and SciFi Wire. (Science Fiction Weekly is just a summary of the past week’s news.)
Other sites (SF Signal included) collate the news from these and other sources. While not original information, the one-stop-shopping is nice. SF Crowsnest is good for SF news in the UK although its propensity for popups is starting to irritate. Solar Flare has been stepping up a bit in terms of news posts as well.
SF Blogs can be interesting. SF bloggers post two different kinds of information – news and opinions – sometimes in the same post. The news, as mentioned above, is usually just a rehash of what’s easily found elsewhere (with a link and a hat-tip). That’s fine for blogs like ours where we have a community of people with whom we want to share the news. But the opinion is usually the more interesting content. Even better when it’s not just a rant for the sake of ranting, but an honest opinion or reflection based on the topic. Better still when the topic starts a conversation by several contributors.
There are several SF blogs I like to visit regularly. Matthew Cheney’s Mumpsimus and Jonathan Strahan’s Notes From Coode Street are always good reads. Big Dumb Object is another frequent stopping place and a good source for UK news as well. John Scalzi’s Whatever blog is another favorite as of late. I frequently visit the consistent content of SciFi Dailyand Sci-Fi Ranter Girl, but I’m a bit confused by The Dragon Page blog since they started podcasting via their more popular Slice of SF site. Other blogs, while not solely science fiction, do offer the occasional science fiction tidbit; sites like The Eternal Golden Braid, TexasBestGrok, Spacecraft and Voyage to Arcturus.
I call sites that tend to release a new version of their categorized websites at predetermined intervals “Magazine Sites”. (Oddly, I don’t place the website for Locus Magazine here because they focus on daily news and tidbits – the real content is in the printed magazine.) SciFi Weekly (updated every Monday or Tuesday) is usually a must-read as is SF Site (updated twice a month). The UK-based Alien Online is also fun to read and updated more often than most. Revolution SF is both interesting and funny. The Internet Review of Science Fiction always has some thoughtful discussion but, alas, is published on a monthly schedule. Emerald City is another mag site. Then there are the online versions of the print magazines: Asimov’s , Analog and Fantasy & SF.
There are many places (some mentioned in other sections) for free fiction, but the most comprehensive collector of this fiction has got to be Free Speculative Fiction. I’ve snagged many a short story through this site. (A simple conversion via the MS Word eBook converter to store eBooks on my PDA and I’m good to go!) Infinity Plus is another site I visit when looking for original short fiction, although it used to be updated much more frequently.
Occasionally I like to read reviews that others have written. (So I can steal their opinions, reword it using John-speak, and publish it as my own. Just kidding…or am I? :)) Two of the best sites for short fiction reviews are Tangent and Best SF. Mark Watson at Best SF has a great review archive of anthologies. After I review older anthologies myself, I like to go there and compare notes. Evil Androids and Fantastica Daily are good, too, and both offer news items as well.
I find lots of exciting SF-related stuff through link sites (sites whose main content are links to things – things you may want to bookmark or email to people). Usually, these sites are not strictly science fiction sites and they offer other good stuff too. Gravity Lens is a good one in this category. Although GL’s Jeff is not as…spirited…on his own site as he is in these pages, his links are always interesting. I look forward to the first of every month where Jeff lists the [whatever]-of-the-month. Website at the End of the Universe does a good job of picking a current topic/link/story and finding lots of related information. Boing Boing, one of the most popular blog ever, puts anything and everything on their pages. Best is to subscribe to their newsfeed to wade through the noise. The best posts there are Cory Doctorow’s science fiction related posts although I think others disagree with my assessment as just about everything else they post is reverberated throughout the blogsphere for days.
The value of some sites is not in their fresh content at all. Locus Magazine offers The Locus Index to Science Fiction and The Locus Index to Awards. The index lets you search for stories and novels by author, collection, anthology or whatever and shows the publication history. The Awards site lets you see all nominees and winners sorted by year, author, award, category and more.
SciFan‘s from page is not updated very often, but you can be sure that things are being added to their database frequently. SciFan collects comprehensive bibliographical information for authors and also lists books in a series. Their themes pages were a great way to find an if-you-like-that-then-you’ll-like-this book.
Other useful resource sites are Classic SF (for a listing of currently-playing science fiction on TV) and SF Resource Guide. The Resource Guide hasn’t been updated in years, but the content it contains (too much to mention here) is still valuable.