Category Archives: fiction

Sci-fi titan Ray Bradbury has died

Legendary science fiction (and fantasy and horror) author Ray Bradbury has died at the age of 91.

Bradbury is probably best known for Farenheit 451 (bane of many a high school English student) and The Martian Chronicles. But he was a prolific writer of so much more than can be listed here, so we’ll send you to his own chronology. You might be surprised at the titles you recognize there from his own printed works to the titles that eventually became television or movies.

So we’ll close out with some inspiration from the man himself:

Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.

Zahn, Stackpole and Allston Talk SWEU at Origins

Dunc is enjoying a well-earned break at Origins hanging around with a nice chunk of Club Jaders getting up to some mischief or other.

So I’m going to link you guys over to our friends from Tosche Station who wrote an awesome summary of what happens when you get Timothy Zahn, Aaron Allston and Michael Stackpole in a room egged on by Club Jaders. (Although I’m sure others helped.)

Is anyone else depressed they’re not at Origins this weekend?

Other worlds: Walton’s Among Others takes Nebula

Awards. The Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America gave out the Nebula Awards last weekend, and I’m shocked that my pick, Jo Walton’s Among Others, took the novel prize. Other winners include Kij Johnson, Geoff Ryman, and Ken Liu.

A Neil Gaiman-penned episode of Doctor Who, ‘The Doctor’s Wife,’ took the Ray Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation, and Delia Sherman’s The Freedom Maze won the Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy. Connie Willis was honored as a Grand Master, and the Solstice Award (“for those who have made a consistent, positive, major difference in the genre”) went to the late Octavia Butler and John Clute.

First look. Aaron Allston is currently revising his novels Doc Sidhe and Sidhe-Devil, and offers an early look at the new cover for Doc Sidhe. He hopes to make a new edition of the book available in the summer. In other Allstony news, he’s among the authors of a new short story anthology that will be published at Origins Game Fair , where, coincidently, several Club Jaders will be next week. Timothy Zahn and Michael A . Stackpole also have stories, as well as a few other names that may be familiar.

Comics. Marvel will be hosting its first gay wedding in June, as X-Man Northstar weds his partner Kyle in Astonishing X-Men #51. Northstar, a founding member of Alpha Flight, (the Canadian Avengers, apparently) has been out of the four-color closet since 1992. Making use of their parent company’s corporate clout, Marvel announced the move on morning talk show The View.

Not to be oudone, DC Comics recently announced that they’ll soon be reintroducing an existing character as gay. DC reimaged the character of Batwoman, Kate Kane, as a lesbian in 2009.

Something else worth checking out: A look at the evolution of LGBT characters in comics, fandom, and YA lit.

Look at your life, look at your choices. Ex-Twilight fan fiction Fifty Shades of Grey has sold 10 million copies. “BookScan data indicates that the trilogy has captured twenty-five percent of the adult fiction market in recent weeks.” Twenty. Five. Percent. Meanwhile, MTV’s Josh Horowitz risked opening up some kind of wormhole by getting Kristen Stewart (among others) to read from the book.

Also… Mira Grant’s Feed and sequels optioned for film / Charlaine Harris says the next Sookie Stackhouse book, Dead Ever After, will be the last in the series / The most successful self-published SF/F authors / Michael Whelan’s cover for the final Wheel of Time book.

Out this week: Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison

Lo, there is a comic coming out on Wednesday. Keep an eye out for Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison #1 in your local comic shop.

We’re in a dry period for Star Wars books, with nothing but reprints for the next couple months, but certain Jaders may be interested to hear that the third and final book of Mira Grant’s Newsflesh trilogy, Blackout, is out today. Despite being fairly adverse to zombies, I recommended the first book, Feed, way back in 2010.

An Avenger’s oopsie: Women totally don’t get superhero movies, right?

Yesterday afternoon, (a division of AOL) posted an article by Jessie Heyman initially entitled “Girl’s Guide To The Avengers: What You Need To Know If You Know Nothing.” After the internet community got a hold of the article (including yours truly) and the outrage began to spawn on Twitter and other sites, the title was amended to “One Girl’s Guide…” because, according to the Editor’s note that was inserted, the intent was not to make female superhero fans feel marginalized and the satirical nature of the piece didn’t come through. Female superhero fans feeling marginalized? Satire? Really? Is that what you’re going to go with?

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Other worlds: Major SF/F publisher going DRM-free

Big news for e-book lovers. The parent company of Tor, one of the biggest SF/F publishers, announced today that they’re going to make their ebooks DRM-Free. This is a pretty big deal – and it looks likely means we’ll likely see more cross-polinating on the existing readers. But I’m no expert – you’ll want to check in with folks like John Scalzi and Charles Stross.

Oh, e-book lovers? Don’t be this asshole.

On another note, I swear I’m almost done, you really, really want to go and buy The Price of Stars for $2.99. I have an entire post to write about the Mageworlds series, but who knows if it’ll still be on $2.99 then? $2.99!

Awards. I am shamefully late in writing about the Hugo Award nominations, for which I apologize. The novel nominees include George R. R. Martin’s A Dance With Dragons, Mira Grant’s Deadline and Jo Walton’s Among Others, which I gushed about back in the Nebulas. There are plenty of other familiar names in the media categories (Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, Doctor Who, even Community) but the news that made waves was that the blog SF Signal is up for best fanzine. They were so excited that they made an infographic. NERD PARTY! No, seriously, it’s pretty neat.

On a shoestring! SyFy is going to adapt Stephen King’s fantasy novel Eyes of the Dragon and I predict it will try very hard to look like Game of Thrones. Meanwhile, over at Vulture, Gilbert Cruz ranks all 62 of King’s books. His #1 is one of my favorite, can’t-miss novels.

Upcoming. N.K. Jemisin starts a new duology. This may be the thing to finally tear me away from my second Mageworlds reread in a month.

Also… Stop taking this pictureDrew Karpyshyn signed for fantasy trilogy – Wedding invitations with a Hitchhiker’s theme – Jim Hines follows up his viral recreation of women on book covers by posing like the men.

I Am Legend director offered Catching Fire

Lionsgate has selected Francis Lawrence to helm The Hunger Games sequel, says the The Hollywood Reporter. It’s not a sure thing quite yet – just an offer – but this is quick work for the studio, which failed to come to an agreement with Gary Ross earlier in the month.

Lawrence, no relation to star Jennifer Lawrence, is no stranger to adaptions: He directed Water for Elephants (2011,) I Am Legend (2007,) and the much-lamented Constantine (2005.) More in his favor for the world of Hunger Games may be his work the short-lived NBC drama Kings, aka the TV show that Ian McShane did not swear in.

He also directed Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance video. How strangely appropriate…

Director Gary Ross out of Hunger Games sequel

Word emerged today that Gary Ross won’t be returning to direct Catching Fire, the adaption of the second book. UPDATE: Deadline Hollywood says, not so fast. UPDATE: Yup, he’s out.

The internet is eager to speculate on who should fill his shoes, and one name that’s been popping up a lot in my feeds is Kathryn Bigelow, who won the directing Oscar a few years back for The Hurt Locker. She’s no stranger to action (Point Break) or sci-fi (Strange Days) so she might be good fit. The Washington Post’s Jen Chaney has a few other suggestions, including Debra Granik, who directed Jennifer Lawrence in the film that nabbed her an Oscar nomination, Winter’s Bone.

In happier news, one potential conflict to the film has been cleared up. The sequel to X-Men: First Class will begin filming in January, freeing up Lawrence to shoot Catching Fire in the fall as scheduled – assuming a director is on board by then!

Other worlds: Game of Thrones returns Sunday with S2

The night is dark and full of terrors. The second season of the hit series based on George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire debuts tomorrow! (I’m so excited, even though I can’t actually remember where A Clash of Kings ends and A Storm of Swords begins.) Among the must-reads is this interview with showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss. There’s also been a lot of attention paid to the shows’ female characters. And is the mainstream finally paying attention to fantasy? Well, sort of.

If you want to gorge on more Thrones news, reviews, and interviews ahead of the premiere, head over to the dedicated fan blog Winter is Coming.

Authors behaving badly. Christoper Priest, author of The Prestige, is not very happy with the Arthur C. Clarke Award shortlist. Take it, Cleolinda.

Preach it. I haven’t been much impressed with his books, but I think Patrick Rothfuss hits things right out of the park on how fantasy needs to move past aping the Tolkien elves-and-dwarves formula.

The Hunger Games. Everyone loves it! Except the people who somehow missed that Rue was black in the book, and think that diminishes the character’s impact. (Um, spoilers.) Not enough facepalm in the world. Actress Amandla Stenberg said in a statement: “It was an amazing experience; I am proud of the film and my performance. I want to thank all of my fans and the entire Hunger Games community for their support and loyalty.”

Will The Hunger Games mark a sea change in Hollywood’s willingness to greenlight more female-lead action movies? The experts are skeptical.

And finally, here’s something not-so-serious: Capitol propaganda posters.

The Lame Files. Is 50 Shades of Grey taking fan fiction mainstream? Considering what what I got in my mailbox yesterday… Yes. Yes it is. Here’s a look back at the book’s fanfic past.

Also: Ten books every fantasy author should readWhy the Wheel of Time series is so longHighlights in the history of space operaHarry Potter genderswapStakes in fantasy novelsWhy old books smell so good