- Free fiction:
- “The Troll” by T.H. White (1935). [via Jeffrey Ford]
- Tor’s latest freebie is Through Wolf’s Eyes by Jane Lindskold. (Freebie wallpaper this week includes Stanley Meltzoff’s painting for the 1952 edition of The Green Hills of Earth by Robert A. Heinlein and Gregory Manchess’ painting, Something Wicked, for the Spectrum 10 Call for Entries poster.)
- The Ranch” by Gary Gibson, a vampire story. [via Peripheral Vision]
- SFF Audio rounds up a slew of John Kessel audio-stories.
- Escape Pod podcasts Mike Resnick’s “The Big Guy“.
- Check out the first comment in James Wallace Harris’ post on audiobooks and you’ll see a comment by Audible’s content director talking about how Audible is recording Hugo Award winning books.
- In innovative publishing news: Instead of giving authors advances, HarperCollins will be implementing a profit-sharing payment plan. [via GalleyCat]
- SciFi Scanner has some cool video of Nexus: The Animated Classic That Almost Was, with animation reminiscent of Space Ghost.
- Movie City Indie serves up a history of the film as 2001: A Space Odyssey turns 40. [via Boing Boing]
- I’m sure when Howie Mandel’s game show Deal or No Deal does their Star Wars-themed episode on APril 28, ratings will increase. But they would be in another galaxy altogether if we could see Chewbacca put a rubber glove over his head and blow it up with his nose. [via Star Wars Blog]
- Forward-and-Share serves up A Newbie’s Guide to Science Fiction, Fantasy and Genre Conventions.
- SciFiRama offers the ultimate guide to sci-fi on the Internet, a collection of 56 links for science fiction fans.
- Real Science: Chris Gorski of the American Institute of Physics looks at The Science behind Fairy Tales. [via Gwenda Bond]
- OMG-Lists lists 7 Weird Superheros Who Won’t Ever Hit the Silver Screen (But Should). [via Neatorama]
Filed under: Tidbits
Yesterday, Warner Bros. announced they had greenlit a movie adaptation of Dan Simmons’ Hyperion Cantos (Hyperion, The Fall of Hyperion).
My first reaction to hearing this was, “Wow! Awesome!” But on further reflection, I have to ask, “How in the hell are they going to do that without gutting the story?”
There is a lot of story in those two books, I don’t see how you can make a comprehensible movie that comes in at even 2 hours out of it, short of removing much that makes the novels so good. I’m guessing that most of the ‘backstory’, i.e. – the entire first novel, will most likely be condensed into either short flashbacks or, worse still, a couple of lines of dialog.
This sounds like something that deserves either a series of films, or even a mini-series on TV. One film just doesn’t seem to cut it. Still, think of all the cool stuff that we’ll get to see: the Time Tombs, the Shrike, the Labyrinth, the Ousters, and the Farcasters, just to name a few. Then there’s all the SF-nal goodness that I really like that may have to be removed to make it palatable for general audiences. There is a lot of heavy metaphysics in these books, plus ruminations on A.I., U.I., quantum physics and such. How in the world can they pare this down?
Just thinking here, but, to me, these books fall in the category of “I’d love to see a movie of them, but they’re probably better off not ever being a movie”. Comments?
But it’s never too early to start the casting game! Who gets to play:
Sol Weintraub and his daughter Rachel
Have at it!
Filed under: Movies
Just a quick reminder that our Sands Of Oblivion giveaway is winding down. This Sunday (4/6) is the last day we’ll be accepting entries. If you’d like a free copy of the DVD, and who doesn’t like free?, send us an email at:
contest AT sfsignal DOT com
You still have a decent chance at winning your very own DVD with Adam Baldwin and Morena Baccarin.
Filed under: Contest
- It’s Battlestar Galactica day today. Tonight is the premier of season 4, which starts at 10pm ET. I believe Sci Fi is also streaming the season 4 opener online beginning at noon today if you just can’t wait. But, what if you’re hoplessly out of touch but want to catch up quickly? Salon has the answer! They’ve posted a nicely detailed guide entitled: Everything you were afraid to ask about Battlestar Galactica. And yes, the ask a lot of questions and cover all the previous seasons.
- Perhaps you just love spoilers and can’t wait to find out if Starbuck is a Cylon or not. If so, then mosey on over to Amazon’s Screening Room and listen their interview with Katee Sackhoff where she answers the question definitively. Thanks, but I think I’ll wait.
- NBC has released their list of new shows for the coming season. Included are a few genre-ish shows. They are: Knight Rider, My Own Worst Enemy – a Jekyll/Hyde story, and Merlin – follows Merlin and Arthur as young men (The Once and Future King anyone?). I have to say I am intrigued by Merlin. If it’s anything like the first part of TOaFK, it could be really good. And Merlin has to live backwards in time, otherwise it’s not quite as interesting. But probably easier to write.
- Along with detailing their new shows, NBC also announced their plans to produce short webisodes for Heroes and Chuck. Apparently the resolution of the strike has freed the writers to work on these types of projects with the knowledge they will be compensated for them. In any case, it’s nice to see a big network using the ‘net to expand their offerings.
- Thanks to Christian Wagner and his LiveJournal, we can bring you this early SF TV show, Captain Video!:
Filed under: Tube Bits
REVIEW SUMMARY: It’s Elom 90210.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: A group of teenagers must save their world, but first they have to figure out their relationship problems.
PROS: Intriguing world-building, realistic characters.
CONS: The realistic characters are teenagers with over-active hormones.
BOTTOM LINE: Too much soap, not enough space in this opera.
Filed under: Book Review
- Yahoo has the new trailer for Hellboy II: The Golden Army. The first movie was a pleasant surprise…I’m crossing my fingers on this one.
- ActuSf interviews David Brin, whose latest book is Sky Horizon.
- At Omnivoracious, Jeff VanderMeer interviews Paolo Bacigalupi, author of the collection Pump Six an Other Stories. “like that there’s a clarity to short stories that tends to get lost when you write to a longer form.”
- LCRW noticed this short interview in ForeWord Magazine with John Kessel and calls the money quote: “Q: If you could have any five people over for dinner, who would they be? A: Herman Melville, Jane Austen, Orson Welles, Richard Feynman, and Kate Beckinsale.”
- Stainless Steel Droppings has A Baker’s Dozen of Neil Gaiman videos.
- Speaking of Neil Gaiman, Subterranean Press has announced the young adult novel Interworld written by Gaiman and Michael Reaves. All of the profits from this limited edition will go to Mr. Reaves to help with his medical and daily living expenses.
- Today’s cover Pr0n: Chris Roberson’s End of the Century with a cover by Dan Dos Santos. The book blends Dark Ages fantasy, gaslit mystery, and a modern-day jewel heist.
- Make-Believe for Grown-Ups offers A Quick and Unofficial History of F&SF. [via F&SF Blog]
- Richard Larson makes with the linkage and points us to this all-sf issue of Kirkus [PDF link].
- Vulpes Libris looks at Genre Wars; as in “Science Fiction Versus Literary Fiction”. “In the quarrel between Genre and Literary Fiction, the stacks are weighed in the Literary Fiction’s favour if those writing in their genre who are respected by the literary establishment are ‘stolen away’ by Literary Fiction.”
- Wil Wheaton agrees with John Scalzi on his general advice for meeting writers.
- >Wired interviews BSG‘s Tricia Helfer. The Daily P.O.P. shares a sneak peek at Doctor Who‘s new season.
- Boston Globe‘s Joshua Glenn takes an in-depth look at the connection between Iron Man and the Black Sabbath song of the same name in his article We are Iron Man! A lowbrow literary mystery.
Filed under: Tidbits
This week we tackle one of our favorite science fiction sub-genres, Space Opera. Specifically for this question, we are going to be taking our cue from Alan DeNiro’s review of The New Space Opera over at Rain Taxi. (You can view the book online here). The question posed to our panel this week is:
Relevant? Today’s news will be dated tomorrow. Why bother with relevance? You might as well demand that Tolkien be politically correct. Space Opera being a retro style, it should be indulged in with mucho retro gusto. Human passions on alien worlds! Action! Adventure! Really Wild Things! The big evolutionary drama played out against the universe in a timeless way. It makes for good stories, and good storytelling stands the test of time. The Wild West vanished long ago, but no one ever remarks that western stories are irrelevant. If I’m going to write genre stuff I will revel in it, not cringe and worry whether I’m relevant enough for today’s tastes.
Filed under: Mind Meld
- SciFi Wire profiles Adam-Troy Castro, author of Emissaries From the Dead.
- Dragon Page Cover To Cover podcast-interviews Scott Sigler (Infected). [via SFFaudio]
- Eos Blog has Fiona McIntosh talking about creating fantasy worlds, specifically for her latest book Odalisque, the first book in The Percheron Saga.
- Free Fiction:
- Futurismic is posting free fiction again. Their latest is “Mallory” by Leonard Richardson.
- Recently-free fiction at ManyBooks.net: “The Sun King” by Gaston Derreaux (1949).
- Free Audio fiction: Starship Sofa podcasts “And the Deep Blue Sea” by Elizabeth Bear, which appeared in the Wastelands anthology.
- Science Fiction Awards Watch has the scoop on Free Hugo-nominated Novels for Hugo Voters.
- John Joseph Adams lists the contents of the May 2008 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, which includes fiction from Robert Reed, George Tucker, Albert E. Cowdrey, M. Rickert and more.
- The Art Department points us to the Spectrum 2009 calendar.
- Guardian looks at The politics of sci-fi. “Science fiction awards shortlists are a hotbed of rivalry, intrigue and a desperate desire for literary respectability.” The article mentions Michael Chabon, the “secret weapon of a genre” who will “reveal his origins as a genetically engineered Super Writer, bred to infiltrate mainstream literature with high-quality genre fiction”.
- Who says lawyers are stiff? John C. Wright points us to Lord of the Rings as Property Law. To wit: “Sauron holds ownership in the Ring through accession, by working one thing (base metals) into a new thing (a ring of power)”
- SciFi Scanner unearths Fun Sci-Fi Finds on Hulu.
- SciFi Scanner also directs us to this cool Superhero Lonely exhibition of John Jacobs Meyer. (My favorite: The Talosian from Star Trek: TOS)
- OK, one more from SciFi Scanner: the latest SciFi Dept looks at Fantasy Cars of Tomorrow. (Features Speed Racer, Iron Man, Death Race 2000, Mad Max, Damnation Alley, and more.)
- The animated film Dead Space is billed as Alien meets Doom in space.
- Future of Classic explores the Kid-Friendly Lessons in Terminator 2: “ATM’s are a valuable source for funds that don’t belong to you… but that can become yours.”
Filed under: Tidbits
We had an interesting, if brief, discussion at lunch today. Trent mentioned how it was about time to re-read the Dune novels again. I asked why, when there are plenty of other things to read?
My comment stemmed from my recollection of re-reading Dune specifically. I enjoyed it immensely the first time, but the second time (which I did as a precursor to finally reading the sequels) was a much less enjoyable experience. I think in the case of Dune I derived pleasure from the plot details and surprises which were still vividly remembered on the re-read, thus resulting in a less enjoyable re-read.
It depends on the book, I suppose. I still want to go back and re-read The Man Who Fell to Earth by Walter Tevis. But there is an incredible backlog of books that I haven’t read yet want to. Seems like there is less reason to re-read old books when there are new ones to discover.
What about you? Do you like re-reading books? Which ones and how often?
Filed under: Books
- Gene Wolfe’s next book, An Evil Guest is billed as “Lovecraft mets Blade Runner.” [via Claw of the Conciliator]
- At Time magazine Lev Grossman & Matt Selman remind us about The Return of Neal Stephenson, specifically via his upcoming book Anathem. [sent via Fred K.]
- The Art Department gives us a sneak peek at John Scalzi’s repackaged Agent to the Stars with it’s shiny new cover.
- Now posted: Dave Langford’s Ansible 249.
- John C. Wright has posted the first four chapters of Null-A Continuum.
- The World in the Satin Bag interviews Paul Melko.
- L.E. Modesitt, Jr. is thinking about science fiction predictions: “…the failings of later SF writers to anticipate the future rest on three factors…”
- On for thewriters: E.E. Knight talks about creating compelling characters.
- The latest issue of Helix: A Speculative Fiction Quarterly features fiction from Robert Reed, A.M. Dellamonica, Ann Leckie and others.
- The latest issue of Clarkesworld Magazine features fiction from Jeffrey Ford and Jeremiah Sturgill, an article by Tim Pratt, Jeff VanderMeer’s interview with K.J. Bishop, and a spectacular “Floating Fish” cover by artist Mats Minnhagen.
- Speaking of VanderMeer, Ann & Jeff VanderMeer will be writing a column for io9 about SF/fantastic art. Congratulations, Ann & Jeff!
- Topless Robot is making me hungry. Check out this Battle of Hoth wedding cake. Mmmmm…Imperial walkers…
- The April Fool’s Award for Funniest Prank goes to….Edward Champion’s Return of the Return of the Reluctant for this oh-so-funny post called Harriet Klausner Gives 3-Star Amazon Review. Could you imaging such a thing? Out of all the thousands of reviews she’s done, how would you like to be the author who wrote a book to which Klausner gave only 3 stars. I’m just sayin’…
Filed under: Tidbits
Just a quick note to sat that I’m blogging at AMC TV’s SciFi Scanner again this week.
My posting there will be light as this is a very busy week at work. (I do have a day job, tidbit monkeys.)
For now, you can check out my posts thus far:
- Rationalizing Life-Size Sci-Fi Statues
- Holy Viral Marketing, Batman!
- John Carter Almost Went to Mars 70 Years Ago
Filed under: Web Sites
- Great news for anyone who likes steampunk, Philip Reves’ novel, Larklight (SF Signal review) has been greenlit as a movie by Warner Bros. Shekah Kapu is the director and it will have a $200 million budget! Holy smoke. They must be going all out to get it to look right. If they do this right, this movie should rock as hard as the book did. It’s sequel, Starcross is just as awesome. You have to love time-traveling top hats… [via Sci Fi Scanner]
- Lars Glenson of By Common Consent goes off on a rant against all the current writers of science fiction TV who happen to be former writers for Star Trek. He’s basically blaming the writers for the networks reluctance to make any SF show that isn’t, in some way, a reflection of Star Trek. I think that anger is misplaced. All he sees is what gets on the air, not what is pitched. Blame the studios. THEY are the ones calling the shots.
- Did you know that Amazon has a new Sci-Fi store? It’s called Cosmotopia, and to celebrate, Amazon has picked seven influential retro SF movies. A nice list indeed, even picking John’s favorite movie, Blade Runner.
- And if you haven’t seen it yet, you can view the Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull TV ad here. Not much different from the original trailer, but we do get a few new peeks. Continue ‘Operation Countdown to May 22nd’.
Filed under: Tube Bits
Here are The Top 10 SF Signal Posts for March 2008:
- MIND MELD: Is Young Adult SF/F Too Explicit?
- MIND MELD: Is Science Fiction Antithetical to Religion?
- NOMINEES: 2008 Hugo Award
- Even Newer Speed Racer Trailer
- It’s Trailer Day! Final Wall E Trailer
- SF Site’s Best SF/F Books of 2007
- MIND MELD: Science Fiction Series
- Mind Meld Make-Up Test: Orson Scott Card on Young Adult Fiction
- RIP: Gary Gygax
- REVIEW: Galactic Empires edited by Gardner Dozois
Here are the top hits to posts from previous months.
- SF/F Writers Who Blog
- Heroes Season 3 Sneak Peek
- Battlestar Galactica’s Season 4 Start Date Revealed!
- Cthulhu Family Circus
- MIND MELD: Which SciFi Movie Ending Would You Change?
- Heroes Season 2 Officially Sucks
- FINALISTS: 2007 Nebula Awards
- Tube Bits for 07/17/2007
- The Top 10 Science Fiction Anime
- Solve Rubik’s Cube
Filed under: Meta
- In case you hadn’t heard, Battlestar Galactica returns to TV this Friday night at 9pm ET. In celebration, Sci Fi is running a BSG marathon. It started yesterday and will run through Friday, every day from 8am to 6pm ET. Razor will not be shown. Anyone aside from me going to be watching the last season?
- Staying with BSG for minute: Lucy Lawless says true fans don’t need spoilers and that she would rather lie than reveal anything about the upcoming season. I’m not sure how to feel about that. Of course, I try to avoid spoilers as much as I can covering the shows I’m interested in.
- The show everyone loves to hate, the new Flash Gordon has apparently been canceled. No official word, which seems to be par for the course with Sci Fi and canceling shows these days.
- Fans of Knight Rider, both new and old, will be happy to know that the new movie did well enough to earn a Knight Rider series! Hoo. Ray. Debuting this fall, you can look forward to the continuing adventures of the Michael Knight clan and their fetish for souped-up, A.I. driven hot-rods. I’m on the fence here. The movie was just ok. I’m sure this news has David Hasselhoff jumping for joy:
Filed under: Tube Bits
- SFFWorld get all interviewy with James Barclay and Alastair Reynolds
- The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction interviews Steven Utley about his story “The 400-Million-Year Itch”.
- At Omnivoracious, Jeff VanderMeer interviews Jim C. Hines (The Snort-Fest Trilogy).
- io9 interviews Jane Espenson, who has written episodes of Firefly and Battlestar Galactica.
- PDF ‘zine Journey Planet interviews John Scalzi, who talks about Fan Hugos. [via Science Fiction Awards Watch]
- George R. R. Martin will be on B&N Book Club’s Center Stage on April 14-18. [via Grasping for the Wind, who has more details]
- Sez Times Online: Internet book piracy will drive authors to stop writing. Meanwhile, Guardian Book Blog asks: “Will online breaches of copyright kill the printed book – or bring it to a new audience?”
- Free Fiction:
- Spectrum has announed the artist list for Spectrum 15. Looks like another strog edition.
- Did you know there was a whole blog devoted to bookshelves? [via Neatorama]
- Star Wars Blog stumbles across an antique ad for a General Grievous Cycle and cool-looking Steampunk Darth Vader Mask.
- Speaking of Star Wars, here’s what Darth Vader does on summer vacation.
- Design blog Abduzeedo looks at Cool Science Fiction Posters.
- Solar Flare returns after a year-long hiatus from blogging. Welcome back, Eoghann!
- Chris Roberson takes us to Bob Clampett’s John Carter of Mars.
- Stranger than Truth lists The Top 10 Animated Science Fiction Characters.
- Either it’s April Fool’s day or Ann and Jeff VanderMeer are editing an anthology called Squidpunk!
- The 30th Anniversary Issue of fanzine File 770 is out. SF Signal gets a mention as a “high-energy” blog. Oh great…now we have to live up to that claim. (I kid! Thanks, Mike! :))
Filed under: Tidbits
Science Fiction Stories:
- “Manumission” by Tobias S. Buckell
- “Virtually, A Cat” by Jody Lynn Nye
- “Indomitable” by Jack McDevitt
- “Honorable Enemies: A Jake Masters Mystery” by Mike Resnick
- “Scraps of Fog” by Sarah A. Hoyt
- “The Witch of Waxahachie” by Lou Antonelli
- “Knight of Coins” by Margaret Ronald
- “Countdown to Armageddon, Episode Four” by Edward M. Lerner
- “Fish Story, Episode Twelve” by Eric Flint, Dave Freer and Andrew Dennis
- Becoming Stewards of Our World: The Great Theme of the 21st Century, Part Two, Editing the Sun: A Way Out Way Out by Gregory Benford
- Earth’s Next Schism by Stephen Euin Cobb
- “Red Tape and Cold Iron, or A Proposal for the Reintroduction of the Faery Folk to the United Kingdom” by Lucy Bond
- “Extreme Reservations” by R. J. Ortega
- “Born of the Sun” by Jack Williamson
- Attending Worldcon by Mike Resnick
- A Matter of Symbiosis by Eric Flint
- The Matrix and the Star Maker by Mike Resnick
- The Toy Shop by Barry N. Malzberg
- April 2008, What’s New in The Future And You by Stephen Euin Cobb
Filed under: Web Sites
Editor Ellen Datlow has posted the contents of The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror 2008: Twenty-first Annual Collection, the anthology she coedits with Kelly Link & Gavin J. Grant:
- “The Cambist and Lord Iron: A Fairy Tale of Economics” by Daniel Abraham
- “The Gray Boy’s Work” by M.T. Anderson
- “Troll” by (poem) Nathalie Anderson
- “The Monsters of Heaven” by Nathan Ballingrud
- “The Forest” by Laird Barron
- “Reversal of Fortune” by Holly Black
- “The House of Mechanical Pain” by Chaz Brenchley
- “The Merchant and the Alchemist’s Gate” by Ted Chiang
- “Scenes of Hell” by (poem) Billy Collins
- “Toother” by Terry Dowling
- “The Drowned Life” by Jeffrey Ford
- “The Last Worders” by Karen Joy Fowler
- “Monkey” by (poem) Eliza Griswold
- “Up the Fire Road” by Eileen Gunn
- “Winter’s Wife” by Elizabeth Hand
- “A Perfect and Unmappable Grace” by Jack Haringa
- “The Evolution of Trickster Stories Among the Dogs of North Park After the Change” by Kij Johnson
- “The Boulder” by Lucy Kemnitzer
- “The Hill” by Tanith Lee
- “The Ape Man” by Alexander MacBride
- “Lovers (Jafaar the Winged)” by (poem) Khaled Mattawa
- “Hum Drum” by Gary McMahon
- “A Thing Forbidden” by Donald Mead
- “England and Nowhere” by Tim Nickels
- “Sir Hereward and Mister Fitz Go to War Again” by Garth Nix
- “Valentine, July Heat Wave” by Joyce Carol Oates
- “Mr. Poo Poo” by Reggie Oliver
- “Fragrant Goddess” by Paul Park
- “Holiday” by M. Rickert
- “Vampires in the Lemon Grove” by Karen Russell
- “Rats” by Veronica Schanoes
- “The Fiddler of Bayou Teche” by Delia Sherman
- “Village Smart” by (poem) Maggie Smith
- “The Tenth Muse” by William Browning Spencer
- “Follow Me Home” by Sonya Taaffe
- “The Swing” by Don Tumasonis
- “Closet Dreams” by Lisa Tuttle
- “The Seven Devils of Central California” by Catherynne M. Valente
- “Splitfoot” by Paul Walther
- “The Hide” by Liz Williams
Tagged with: Year's Best
Filed under: Books