Tidbits Archives

SF Tidbits for 10/1/07

SF Tidbits for 9/29/07

SF Tidbits for 9/28/07

  • Apparently he will be back…sort of. DVD Review reports that we can expect not just another sequel, but a whole new second Terminator trilogy! One of the films is likely to focus on the war of the machines.
  • Wired has an interview with Ridley Scott, director of Blade Runner, the last sci-fi film to be made before sci-fi died. “You know, Alien is a C film elevated to an A film, honestly, by a great monster.” “I honestly couldn’t get into [Philip K. Dick's book, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep]. It’s so dense, by page 32 there’s about 17 story lines.
  • Cinema Blend News has the teaser poster for Pixar’s WALL-E.
  • File under “Why, God, why?”: Tom Green and Crispin Glover have been cast in the sci-fi comedy film, Freezer Burn: the Invasion of Laxdale, which tells the story of aliens from outer space disguised as Dutch oil company executives who buy a local grain silo and promise to create jobs for a failing farm town, but secretly plan to use crop circles to heat up the temperature of the planet and turn Earth into a Club Med for extraterrestrials.
  • Interviews (The first 3 snagged from Swivet):
    • CHUD interviews Richard K. Morgan (Thirteen). “I’m about telling the story, and I’ll create whatever backdrop I need to do that as I go along. I don’t like info-dumping, and I try to avoid it.”
    • Columbus Dispatch interviews Tim Powers (The Anubis Gates). “I’ve never sympathized with the idea of covertly commenting on the social and political issues of today. That’s a fatal error. As soon as the reader notices the parallel, it prevents the suspension of disbelief.”
    • A Dribble of Ink interviews Brandon Sanderson (Elantris). “In my opinion a good book is a balance be-tween character, setting, and plot with character being the most important of the three. You can have the coolest magic system in the world, but if readers don’t care about the characters who are using that magic system, the book won’t be very fun to read.”
    • Simon Haynes interviews Tim Pratt (Blood Engines). “I’m not sure SF/Fantasy has a particular purpose that’s different from the purpose(s) of all literature, which are variously to edify, to entertain, and to illuminate the human condition.”
    • Amazon Daily interviews M. John Harrison (Nova Swing). “SF is an opportunity to have an intense relationship with your own imagination. It’s a kind of drive-by poetry, trashy and addictive; it’s fun.”
  • In response to their earlier post Does Literary Fiction Suffer from Dysfunctional Pricing?, LitKicks looks at the pleasures of paperbacks.
  • At SciFi Wire, John Joseph Adams profiles Ben Bova, author of The Aftermath, the fourth and final book in his Asteroid Wars series.
  • New at ManyBooks.net: “Pagan Passions” by Gordon Randall Garrett. “Adult Science Fiction, with the supernatural making complete sense.”
  • Del Rey will be publishing new Indiana Jones books.
  • Besides a mini-Seinfeld reunion, the video for Brad Paisley’s song “Online” features a cameo by William Shatner (at 3:14). [via Big Dumb Object via Deanna Hoak, who are hereby put on notice for making me listen to country music.]

SF Tidbits for 9/27/07

SF Tidbits for 9/26/07

SF Tidbits for 9/25/07

SF Tidbits for 9/24/07

SF Tidbits for 9/22/07

SF Tidbits for 9/21/07

SF Tidbits for 9/20/07

SF Tidbits for 9/19/07

SF Tidbits for 9/18/07

SF Tidbits for 9/17/07

SF Tidbits for 9/16/07

SF Tidbits for 9/15/07

SF Tidbits for 9/14/07

  • Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist interviews Jeff Somers, author of the way-cool The Electric Church. Here’s Jeff on the lack of respect of sf: “I like it this way. This way, we get to be ominous and disreputable. The Ominous and Disreputable Writers who Smoked and Drank Too Much. Want to join?”
  • John Scalzi interviews Jim C. Hines, author of Goblin Hero. “I’m sorry, but Shrek is no ogre. He’s a big, strong, ugly human with lousy table manners.” [via The Swivet]
  • StarWars.com has a video for the book The Legacy of the Force, which includes interviews with the book’s authors, Aaron Allston and Troy Denning.
  • That’s not Cthulhu…That’s a Martian! Bob Eggleton previews the cover of Mike Resnick’s upcoming anthology, Alternate Roosevelts.
  • SciFiChick rounds up a bunch of sf/f book excerpts.
  • James Nicoll talks about why modern sf writers should read Fred Hoyle’s science fiction.
  • Here’s another one for writers: How to Write Bad Science Fiction. “An article on how to write bad science fiction may seem to be at odds with the average writer’s ambition to write a science fiction novel that sells a few million copies before being adapted as a screenplay until you pause to consider that there hasn’t been a decent work of science fiction since the original screenplay for Planet of the Apes!” Discuss…
  • BoingBoing points us to a Welsh priest who is planning a Doctor-Who-themed service to attract the youngsters:
  • Look! Up in the Sky! It’s a bird…it’s a plane. No, it’s a Superman Laptop and coat hanger. [via Neatorama]

SF Tidbits for 9/13/07

  • Mike Brotherton shows off the cool cover for Spider Star.
  • Matt Jarpe recalls Radio Freefall‘s 20 year odyssey from Brain to Bookshelf.
  • Gardner Dozois and George R.R. Martin are co-editing Songs of the Dying Earth, an anthology of stories set in Jack Vance’s Dying Earth universe. [via SF Canada via Matt Hughes]
  • Tor has part 1 of a lunch with Larry Niven podcast.
  • Jay Lake is now podcasting.
  • Over at The Guardian, sf writer Adam Roberts explains how something got lost along the way in the translation of Jules Verne’s works. Roberts’ novel, Splinter, is based on Verne’s Hector Servadac (a.k.a. Off on a Comet). Roberts proposes that we “agitate for a mass-translation of the whole of Verne into English, perhaps for e-publication – to make his whole body of work available to English speakers as it actually is.” Meanwhile, the Guardian also profiles Verne’s lesser-known novels.
  • EcoGeek interviews Karl Schroeder, author of Queen of Candesce. “…you shouldn’t distinguish the idea of technological innovation from the idea of social activism. The two are inextricably linked, but technology has the greater power to effect social change because we have essentially no societal mechanisms in place to refuse new technologies.”
  • Neth Space interviews Brian Ruckley, author of Winterbirth. “If read backwards, very slowly and with just the right accent, certain sections of it are liable to summon the Great Old Ones from the vastly deeps or wherever they’re hanging out at the moment.”
  • Fantasy Book Critic interviews David Gunn, author of Death’s Head. “One thing is changing. Combat’s going commercial. War’s gone back to being the business it always was. Only these day’s you’re not a mercenary, you’re a contractor and you’re sub-contracted through a holding company and your ultimate employer has complete deniability.”
  • Crazy on Tap is looking for recommendations on science fiction books about cloning.
  • Real Science: Physicist Stephen Wolfram likes hunting for the fundamental laws of physics. “There’s not just our own physical universe to think about, but the whole universe of possible universes.” [via Kathryn Cramer]
  • Rod Rodenberry is “concerned” about the Trek prequel. Sez junior: “…I would have kept Enterprise on for a couple more seasons because it was doing better. But then after that was over I probably would have let the franchise rest for 5, 10 and maybe even 15 years because there’s enough Star Trek in circulation to go round and round. ” [via SyFy Portal]
  • New at ThinkGeek: Star Trek Retro Action Figures! Klingons before they wore prosthetics!

SF Tidbits for 9/12/07

SF Tidbits for 9/11/07

SF Tidbits for 9/10/07

  • Yatterings interviews author and critic John Clute about his book, Darkening Garden: A Short Lexicon of Horror. Also: Clute reviews The Dog Said Bow-Wow by Michael Swanwick.
  • Ben Alpi wonders…Is there is a market for real sci-fi? “I guess the bottom line is we have to figure out how to remind those in power (marketers) that thoughtful content makes money, too. And then we have to make sure they stay out of making creative decisions!”
  • Meanwhile, Purplexity contemplates the The Human Condition and Sci Fi with respect to Star Trek and Babylon 5. “One explanation we can put forward for the crappiness of the Star Trek characters is that they are removed from the human condition. Although they are still mortal (though they often seem to act as though they are not), they live in a world where they do not have to fight for resources…”
  • BoingBoing shows us a bookcase built into a chair.
  • Gravity Lens points us to a bestiary of the wildlife of Venus.
  • The Flickr series that starts here shows clay aliens made by 6th graders. I think I see a happy Cthulhu!
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