The Most Important (and Enjoyable) Time Travel Stories [Traveling Through Time and Other Vacations of the Mind, Part 2]

Last time, I speculated on why time travel is such a popular trope of science fiction, and why it is even considered science fiction at all, as opposed to fantasy. I ended with a promise to list and discuss what I felt were some of the more important (and enjoyable) time travels stories.

What follows are ten novels and one short story all involving time travel in some form or another.

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[GUEST POST] Kim Harrison Says ‘Excuse Me, You Got Your Romance In My Urban Fantasy’


Kim Harrison, dark urban fantasy author of the New York Times bestselling series The Hollows, was born and raised in the upper Midwest. After gaining her bachelors in the sciences, she moved to South Carolina, where she remained until recently moving back to Michigan because she missed the snow. She is a member of both the Romance Writers of America and The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. When not at her desk, she’s most likely to be found landscaping her new/old Victorian home, or scouring antique shops to fill it.

Excuse me, your romance is in my urban fantasy

One of the best things about being a writer in the age of the Internet is the easy accessibility between authors and readers. Some might argue that it’s one of the worst, but over the last decade, I’ve found that it’s the readers who often ask the hard questions, not about the storylines, but wider concerns of genre trends and what they’re seeing on the shelves, and when a longtime poster lamented to me that he was seeing the shine fading from the urban fantasy genre, that the kick-ass protagonists were melting into damsels more worried about getting their man than the big-bad-ugly, I listened.

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Book Cover Smackdown! ‘Champion of Mars’ vs. ‘The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror 21′ vs. ‘The Immorality Engine’

Hello again, armchair art critics! It’s time once again for another Book Cover Smackdown!

Here are today’s contenders…

Your Mission (should you choose to accept it): Tell us which cover you like best and why.

Books shown here:

NOTE: Bigger, better cover art images are available by clicking the images or title links.

SF Tidbits for 5/31/11

Interviews & Profiles

  • Angry Robot Books interviews Tom Gauld.
  • Ursula K. Le Guin, Helen Merrick, Pat Murphy, and Gary K. Wolfe profile Carol

    Emshwiller.

  • ComingSoon.net interviews Malcolm

    McDowell about he Blu-ray release of A Clockwork Orange. [via Derek

    Johnson]

  • Upcoming: Blog Talk Radio intevriews Ian

    Alexander Martin of Atomic Fez Publishing.

News

Articles

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[GUEST POST] P.I. Barrington Talks About Random Generators and Writing


After a long detour through the entertainment industry, P.I. Barrington has returned to her roots as a fiction author. Among her careers she counts journalism and radio air talent. She lives in Southern California where she watches the (semi-wild) horses grazing in the hills behind her house. She can be contacted via email: wordmistresses@yahoo.com and loves to hear from readers. Her website: TheWordMistresses.com.

To Generate or Not to Generate (Is That the Question?)

If you write science fiction or fantasy I’m guessing you’ve come across what can be some of the best tools for your genre’ and its creations. I’m talking about random generators. You may or may not have heard of them but these online remarkable tools can be invaluable to authors. Random generators are websites that do just what they say: they randomly generate anything you might need when creating your world and everything in it. From character names to monetary names and values to maps to religions and time/era of your particular world, random generators can be a minor godsend if you’re stuck somewhere in your story or need to create viable details or if you are about to embark on your virgin voyage into fantasy/sci fi writing. The random generators are sort of the dice roll of the original face to face roll playing games like Dungeons & Dragons sped up to the technology of today and the development and adaptation is amazing. Generators can give you races of creatures/aliens, societal levels, languages, flora, fauna, and real or fantasy “historical events.”

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Comicpalooza 2011 Report

Houston, TX is not only the central headquarters of SF Signal, it’s also home to Comicpalooza, an annual media convention that started as a small comics-only convention, but has since grown. I attended the event on Saturday and had a good time.

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Books Received: May 30, 2011

In the interest of full disclosure, here are the items we received this week.

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SF Tidbits for 5/30/11

Interviews & Profiles

News

Events

Articles

Art

More Fun

Stuff

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What Do You Get When You Mix Time Travel, Nazis and Thor?

…you get this awesome short film Ollie Klublershturf vs. The Nazis written by Damon Lindelof (LOST, Cowboys and Aliens, and the upcoming Star Trek sequel) and featuring Zach Mills, Lainie Kazan, George Segal, and Chris Hemsworth (Thor).

NSFW, but the beauty of that is that it’s Sunday, Sunday Sunday!

[via SciFi Readers]

SF Tidbits for 5/29/11

Interviews & Profiles

News

Articles

Art

More Fun Stuff

Want More? See SF Signal’s Twitter and Facebook pages for additional tidbits not posted here!

A Bruno Mars Video Starring…Leonard Nimoy?!?

Hardly the kind the sf content we show here, despite the Star Trek references, but this video is just too surreal to pass by…

As Warren Ellis reminds us, Nimoy’s music video career has, in a way, come full circle…

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Free Fiction for 5/28/11

Written

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SF Tidbits for 5/28/11

Interviews & Profiles

News

Events

Articles

Art

More Fun Stuff

Want More? See SF Signal’s Twitter and Facebook pages for additional tidbits not posted here!

Free eBook (Nook Only): The Winds of Khalakovo by Bradley P. Beaulieu

For a limited time (until June 9th) you can get The Winds of Khalakovo by Bradley P. Beaulieu for free at Barnes and Noble. You will need the Nook eBook reader or the Nook reader application to read it.

Here’s the description:

Among inhospitable and unforgiving seas stands Khalakovo, a mountainous archipelago of seven islands, its prominent eyrie stretching a thousand feet into the sky. Serviced by windships bearing goods and dignitaries, Khalakovo’s eyrie stands at the crossroads of world trade. But all is not well in Khalakovo. Conflict has erupted between the ruling Landed, the indigenous Aramahn, and the fanatical Maharraht, and a wasting disease has grown rampant over the past decade. Now, Khalakovo is to play host to the Nine Dukes, a meeting which will weigh heavily upon Khalakovo’s future.

When an elemental spirit attacks an incoming windship, murdering the Grand Duke and his retinue, Prince Nikandr, heir to the scepter of Khalakovo, is tasked with finding the child prodigy believed to be behind the summoning. However, Nikandr discovers that the boy is an autistic savant who may hold the key to lifting the blight that has been sweeping the islands. Can the Dukes, thirsty for revenge, be held at bay? Can Khalakovo be saved? The elusive answer drifts upon the Winds of Khalakovo…

[via Paul Weimer, who reviewed the book at The Functional Nerds]

Joe R. Lansdale Strikes Again

Joe R. Lansdale has flirted with science fiction over the years in stories like “On the Far Side of the Cadillac Desert With Dead Folks” or “Tight Little Stitches in a Dead Man’s Back”. Or, if steampunk is your thing, you could do much worse than Flaming London and Zeppelins West (collected together in The Adventures of Ned the Seal. And there is his comic book stuff which is full of fantastic elements.

But many readers have not taken in the plunge into the waters of Joe’s mystery work and that is a shame. His tales of Hap Collins and Leonard Pine may just be his best work. The things that make the other stories classics are here too. The snappy dialogue, the outrageous situations, the East Texas settings. All there.

Recently, there have been two Hap and Leonard books issued. So, I am a voice crying in the wilderness. “Throw off your shackles and embrace the Mystery! You will not be sorry.”

(To be fair, it has been my experience that science fiction fans will read more omnivorously in other fields than mystery fans. But, if you have not done so, this is a good place to start. If you have, keep reading.)

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It’s MuchoMangoMayo! Here’s Week 2!

Hey there, Signalareeniearoonionarians! The twice-bitten, once shy Beware The Hairy Mango podcast is once more on either side of your face. This time it’s MuchoMangoMayo’s second septet of gob-smacking wonders. Partake of our excellence, then brag to your envy-laden friends!

WARNING! Grups only! Not for the wee ones (but maybe for the wee-wee ones)! Bonk Bonk on the Head!

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Friday YouTube: Doctor Who Intro…SNES Style

Mmm…16-bits…..

[via Nerdist]

SF Tidbits for 5/27/11

Interviews/Profiles

News

Articles

Art

More Fun

Stuff

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Fear Is The Liberator: The Emotional Challenge of ‘Weird’ Fantastika


“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.” – Paul Muad’Dib, Dune

“Death and disaster; nightmares and phobias; new killing technologies; treacherous bodies – a seemingly endless range of terrifying trials and tribulations seemed to face people in the twentieth-century. Worse- there were times when all of history seemed to be reciting a tragic script,devoid of answers or ‘sense.’ On these occasions people’s terror was so overwhelming that their most fundamental identities were in danger of being engulfed. It took some time to notice the astounding creativity with which these men, women, and children made sense of their predicament and remade their world in the wake of the crippling energy of fear. Looking at our society’s fears, in both their past and present manifestations, enables us to meditate on the future. It is a future of our choosing” - Joanna Bourke

This column’s going to be weird, so bear with me…

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New Author Spotlight: Jesse Petersen

New Author Spotlight is a series designed to introduce authors with 3 books or less in the different SF/F subgenres.

Today’s spotlight shines on Jesse Petersen.

Jesse Petersen’s books include:

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