Monday, November 22, 2010

More Love for an Earlier Title

Infoquake (The Jump 225 Trilogy) (v. 1)Speculative Book Review writes:
Infoquake has been compared to the classic novel Dune and the movie Wallstreet. This is a very good comparison, but I think that Infoquake stands on its own merits and allows us to envision a future that could quite possibly occur with a nudge in the right direction. The pacing and style of the novel leaves you wanting more as the book moves at break-neck speed from the corporate boardrooms to the public launch of a product. You would think that a science fiction book that focuses on the backstabbing and the planning of a new computer program would leave you yawning and sleepy, but Edelman has found a way to keep you reading way into the wee hours of the morning drinking coffee like a computer programmer behind on his product launch. A fascinating piece of literary work that is bound to be considered a classic of science fiction. One, if not THE top read of the year. A must have for any reader of science fiction. Could not recommend higher.

Friday, November 19, 2010

ELFSORROW makes LJ Best Books 2010: Genre Fiction list

The Library Journal have just released their "LJ Best Books 2010: Genre Fiction" and James Barclay's Elfsorrow made the list. They write, "The mercenaries of the Raven journey to the heart of the elven continent of Calaius to save the land from dying in a superbly visualized fantasy adventure reminiscent of Glen Cook's classic Black Company tales."

He shared the list with Todd McCaffrey's Dragongirl, China  Miéville's Kraken, Mark Charan Newton's Nights of Villjamur, and Skyler White's And Falling, Fly. Congratulations to all the authors on this prestigious list! 

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Podcast: Comic Book Outsiders

MaskedI was a guest of the UK podcast Comic Book Outsiders this week. Hosts Scott and Steve got me talking about my lifelong love of comics and I shot off into many comic-related tangents while hopefully still talking about the superhero prose anthology Masked some as well. The podcast is available on iTunes as well as from the link above.

Scott and Steve, it was a very fun interview. Thanks!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The NaNoWriMo Song

I love John Anealio's music. His NaNoWriMo Song is just priceless! It got me through NaNoWriMo last year in fact. You can download it, and the new "dance remix" in a pay what you want transaction, starting at free. But you should pay at least $.99 for it, shouldn't you?

Thursday, November 11, 2010

We Always Knew Planets Didn’t Explode on Their Own

Superman: Earth OneAfter an incredibly long hiatus, I've posted my first piece at since March 2010. "We Always Knew Planets Didn’t Explode on Their Own" is my review of J. Michael Straczynski's Superman: Earth One, an original graphic novel that re-imagines the origin of Superman by taking a very different slant on the destruction of Krypton from anything we've seen before.

One thing I couldn't include in the review, but which I got a kick out of. The villain is named Tyrell, looks like Rutger Hauer, and paints his face not unlike Daryl Hannah in a certain film. Also, the nature and weapons of the villains seemed to me reminiscent of aspects of the last two Star Trek films. None of this is criticism. It's just fun to spot the seams and influences.

Monday, November 08, 2010

MASKED is the book for you!

"Masked intrigued me" writes Rob Will Review. "In lieu of an arc linking these stories together, what drove me to read Masked from beginning to end was the thematic build from story to story, for these are really all variations on a single theme.  In a way, it is the same tale told fifteen times. The creativity and ingenuity of each writer, however, distinguish these versions from one another, which underlines just why there continue to be so many comic books on the shelves, so many different twists on what is, at its heart, the same archetype reimagined over and over again."

His conclusion? "If you are a superhero fan, eager to find a slew of original spins on a well-worn topic, Masked is the book for you."

Friday, November 05, 2010

Is Fantasy Gendered?

Over at Salon Futura, Tim Pratt, Glenda Larke, and I discuss "whether some fantasy literature is deliberately targeted at readers of a particular gender." I probably spun the episode more in the direction of teen reading and the Young Adult genre than the topic suggested.

The episode is also available via iTunes.

io9's Environment Writing Contest for Science Journalists and SF Writers

From their release:

In November and December, is sponsoring an environmental writing contest for science journalists and science fiction writers. We are awarding $2000 each for the two best stories (one nonfiction, one science fiction) that deal with environmental disaster - its causes, consequences, and how to deal with both. We invite entries from people all over the world, whether they're seasoned investigative journalists or citizen scientists who have never been published

For full contest rules, please go here.

Here's more information:

We can't prevent environmental disasters without preparing for them. That's why io9 is going to pay $2000 each to two people who write the best stories about environmental disaster. It's io9's Environmental Writing Contest - for science fiction and non-fiction.

io9 is looking for stories that deal with environmental disaster, whether caused by random asteroid impacts or oil drilling accidents. We believe that the first step to solving planet-scale problems is to
assess, honestly and critically, what it would mean to experience such a disaster. We need mental models that can help policy-makers, researchers, and individuals prepare for the kinds of cataclysmic
events that have occurred regularly throughout Earth's history.

We're holding this contest to reward people for coming up with ideas that could help avert the next Deepwater spill and Pacific garbage gyre - or help people prepare better for the next Indian Ocean tsunami and Haiti earthquake. Storytelling is a powerful tool. We want you to use it well.

Our team of judges includes Elizabeth Kolbert (The New Yorker's environment reporter), National Book Award nominee Paolo Bacigalupi (author of Ship Breaker and The Windup Girl), and Jonathan Strahan (editor of the acclaimed Eclipse anthologies).

Contest Guidelines:
Stories should be between 3,000-5,000 words. It must be an original story that has not been published elsewhere.

The contest has two categories: Science Fiction and Non-Fiction. We will pick a winner from each.

Guidelines for Science Fiction Entries:
Your story should deal meaningfully and plausibly with some aspect of environmental disaster. There are no limits on the kind of disaster you explore. It could be an exploding star, a plague, tachyon pollution, nanotech diseases, climate change, or something else. What's important is that your story deal with causes and consequences. How did the disaster happen, who will benefit from it, how will people
(or other creatures) respond to it? We don't want morality tales or after school specials here - just good stories that deal realistically with the subject matter.

Guidelines for Non-Fiction Entries:
Your story can be a piece of investigative journalism, a well-researched history, biographical/autobiographical narrative, or science/technology writing for a lay audience. You can write a profile of people or groups dealing with environmental disaster, analyze the science behind environmental problems, or cover the story of a disaster that has already happened. We prefer stories that involve reporting and research. Though the story must be original, you may base it on research you have already done for another project or piece of reporting.

Winning stories will be published on io9, and we will give $2000 each to the winners in each category.

Deadline for all stories is midnight PST, December 11.

George Takei gets medieval on this douchebag

Thursday, November 04, 2010

James Enge: Making a Virtue of Weirdness

The latest issue of Locus magazine has a long and enthusiastic review of James Enge's The Wolf Age by author and reviewer Tim Pratt. He calls The Wolf Age "inventive and delightful," and says, "Enge's plot is admirably twisty, and he keeps things moving with impressive set pieces, werewolf battles, bizarre magical airships, miraculous feats, and liberal doses of skewed humor. One of his great virtues as a writer is weirdness -- he's not afraid to do the unexpected, and his imagination is formidable. But there's an underlying emotional power here, too. The author excels at depicting the bonds of friendship, the pain of betrayal, and the tragedy of well-laid plans going awry, and that emotional payload is what makes this novel into more than just an entertaining adventure story about a guy with a magical sword who fights monsters. Enge is one of the most engaging of the new sword and sorcery authors, and I hope we get to follow Morlock's exploits for a long time to come."

Update 11/8/10: Locus Online has posted the full review to their site.