World Wide Wednesday

Started by Amanda Rutter, in 2010, World Wide Wednesday is now hosted by Kate Lechler. On most Wednesdays, Kate will take you around the internet, letting you in on some interesting news from the SFF community. If you’ve got a tidbit to share, please comment on the latest post, or contact Kate.

WWWebsday: October 15, 2014

On this day in 2001,  NASA's spacecraft Galileo came within spitting distance of Jupiter's moon, Io.  (Well, if you can spit 112 miles.) 

Jupiter's Moon, Io

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

If you’ve been thinking about picking up China Mieville but don’t know where to start, worry no longer: Jared Shurin has several recommendations. Only downside is, he gives the short stories short shrift, which is too bad: they’re where I started with Mieville, and never stopped.

Read More

WWWebsday: October 8, 2014

On this day in 1943, R.L. Stine, the author of the Goosebumps series, was born.

Russian LOTR Illustrations

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

Roger Sutton of The Horn Book wrote an open-letter to self-published authors this week, explaining why his publication does not review self-published children's books. It will be interesting to see, in the next few years, if self-published children's books follow the trend Sutton has noticed with self-published books for adults; nonetheless, as an editor, I really appreciated this statement: "An editor isn’t there to “fix mistakes.” His or her most important job is to understand what contribution your story makes–or doesn’t–to the big world of books and read... Read More

WWWebsday: October 1, 2014

On this date in history . . . well, a lot of cool stuff happened. Alexander the Great conquered Darius of Persia in 331 BC; Thomas Edison opened his electric lamp factory in 1880; a brand-new Model T was selling for $825 in 1908; NASA replaced NACA in 1958, providing the “Space” in the acronym; and my favorite Disney park, Epcot, opened in 1982.

Art by Fabrizio Clerici

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

In publishing news, Angry Robot sold to Etan Ilfeld, the American owner of Watkins Bookshop in London and the editor of Mind Body Spirit magazine. Ilfeld intends to keep all the current Angry Robot staff and to combine it with other existing imprints to create Watkins Media Limited.

Banned Books Week was last week, and io9 ran a piece on the Read More

WWWebsday: September 24, 2014

On this day in 1852, the first airship powered by (a steam) engine, created by Henri Giffard, traveled 17 miles from Paris to Trappes. And, on this day in 1990, astronomers noticed the Great White Spot (or Great White Oval), a giant storm on Saturn that is observable every 28.5 years.

Rivendell B&B Poster

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

Apex Magazine has recently announced staff changes. Jason Sizemore, the publisher of Apex, will be taking over as editor-in-chief as Sigrid Ellis steps down; the new poetry editor will be Bianca Spriggs.

I recently ran across a new blog to follow, The Book Smugglers. Here Ana and Thea host a Read More

WWWebsday: September 17, 2014

On this date in 1676, Antonie van Leeuwenhoek wrote a letter to the Royal Society describing "animalcules.” They met his claims to see microscopic creatures with skepticism, but today we know that the creatures he saw as protozoa.

Voyage of the Basilisk

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

The longlist for the National Book Award YA Lit has been announced, and includes some great SFF picks, like Kate Milford’s Greenglass House, Andrew Smith’s 100 Sideways Miles, and John Corey Whaley’s Noggin. This is the first time I’ve heard of these books and now I’m itching to read them, especially Read More

WWWebsday: September 10, 2014

On this day in 2008, the Large Hadron Collider was powered up in Geneva, Switzerland, and proton beams circulated in the main ring.

Art by Elisabetta Trevisan

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

Geoff Mak conducts a wonderful interview with Karen Russell, one of my favorite fabulist/slipstream authors; they discuss her favorite authors and myths.

Io9 has a great article on the Islamic roots of science fiction. Not only were they way ahead of Western Europe in science and math, but they also have what sounds like a really cool speculative fiction tradition that predates Frankenstein. More to read!

Okay, Read More

WWWebsday: August 27, 2014

On this day in 1992, Super Mario Kart was released in Japan, launching the entire Mario Kart series.

Fairy Ring by Arthur Rackham

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

The nominees for the 2014 Endeavor Awards, for a distinguished SF/F novel published by an author from the Pacific Northwest, have been announced; the winner will be announced at the next OryCon, held in Portland, OR.

The European Science Fiction Society presented awards this past weekend at the 36th Eurocon, Shamrokon in Dublin.

Finally, the Sidewise Awards (for best alternate history) and the Chesley Awards (for best science fiction or fantasy art) were awarde... Read More

WWWebsday: August 20, 2014

On this day in 1962, the NS Savannah sailed on her maiden voyage. Savannah was the first nuclear powered passenger ship and she was commissioned as part of Eisenhower’s “Atoms for Peace” initiative, which sought to rebrand nuclear power after the use of atomic force in WWII. Savannah ended up visiting 45 foreign ports and taking 848 passengers, before being decommissioned and moored in Baltimore, Maryland.

Art by Salvador Dali

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

Perhaps the biggest news in SFF publishing this week comes to us from LonCon 3, the 72nd World Science Fiction Convention in London this past weekend. The Hugo Awards were announced, with Ann Leckie winning best novel for A... Read More

WWWebsday: August 13, 2014

On this day in 1913, Otto Witte, an acrobat, was purportedly crowned king of Albania. Read his story here: it’s hilarious.

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

Jack Heckel wrote a beautiful article for about why we keep retelling fairytales, as he promotes his soon-to-be-released book, Once Upon a Rhyme, which follows the exploits of Prince Charming. I’m glad this gap will be filled; we need some more masculinity studies of fairy tales to complement the study of fairy tale’s female gender roles!

Recently Star Trek author David Mack received a letter from a reader claiming that they wouldn’t read him anymore since he wrote about same-sex relationships. Read More

WWWebsday: August 6, 2014

Today, we’re featuring two events on this date in history. First, in 1991, Tim Berners-Lee made public his idea for the World Wide Web. Here at WWWebsday, we salute Berners-Lee!

It is also the date, in 1996, that NASA announced that the meteorite ALH 84001 contained evidence of primitive life-forms. While the existence of non-terrestrial life has never been proven, this meteorite presents some fascinating evidence. Read about it here.

Art by Remedios Varos

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

Lev Grossman has been publishing all over the place this week to coincide with the release of his latest novel, The Magician’s Land. This essay is about his ... Read More

WWWebsday: July 30, 2014

On this day in 1932, Disney released Flowers and Trees, their first cartoon short to use Technicolor and the first animated short to win an Academy Award. It’s about dancing flowers and trees—pretty much what you’d expect. Also, today is author Cherie Priest’s birthday!

Art by Beatrix Potter

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

On her blog, Terri Windling writes “In Praise of Re-Reading,” a fascinating piece on how, as we change, our perceptions of our favorite books change with us.

Maybe you guys knew about this already. I’m kinda slow. However, when I saw t... Read More

WWWebsday: July 16, 2014

On this day in 1945, the United States successfully detonated a plutonium based test weapon in New Mexico as part of the Manhattan Project, bringing in the Atomic Age.

The Atomic Age

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

The World Fantasy Awards announced the 2014 list of nominees last week, as well as the two winners of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro and my girl Ellen Datlow.

Tor interviews Tiphanie Yanique, whose first novel, Land of Love and Drowning, has just been released. She is planning someday to write a retelling of the fairytale, “The Twelve Dancing Princesses,” which ... Read More

WWWebsday: July 9, 2014

We’re a little thin on the ground today, but here goes!

On this day in 1981, Donkey Kong debuted and the world was introduced to everyone’s favorite Italian plumber, Mario.

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

Art by Alexander McQueen

Two pieces today by writers, about writing, both from First, Mary Pearson wrote this article about using ancient history to inspire new fantasy worlds, citing George R. R. Martin and Robin LaFevers as examples. Second, Read More

WWWebsday: June 18, 2014

On this day in 1178, five monks in Canterbury were observing the moon and saw “the upper horn split in two.” As they describe it, “A flaming torch sprang up . . . the body of the Moon which was below writhed . . . throbbed like a wounded snake . . . after these transformations, the Moon from horn to horn, that is along its whole length, took on a blackish appearance.”

Only in 1976 did geologist Jack B. Hartung suggest that this phenomena was the creation of the moon’s Giordano Bruno crater, and that the monks witnessed it as it happened.

Today's artist is Ellen Jewett.

Writing, Editing,Publishing:

For all you role-players, Jason Heller at the A.V. Club writes a review of one of his c... Read More

WWWebsday: June 11, 2014

On this day in 2003, the Spirit Rover was launched, beginning the Mars Exploration Rover Mission. You can learn more about Spirit Rover here: it will leave you feeling a little teary-eyed and inexplicably proud of a machine, just like when you saw Wall-E.

A medieval grotesque

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

It’s award season! As I announce these awards, you should just imagine me hopping for 3 ½ minutes like Hugh Jackman did at the Tonys. Because that’s totally what I’m doing. Right now.

The Campbell and Sturgeon awards were announced today. Marcel Theroux won the Campbell for hi... Read More

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