WWWednesday: August 17, 2016

Instead of one word for Wednesday, I’m going to let the Haggard Hawks team give you 10: 10 words absorbed into English that come from other languages. (I think there are more than 10 by the time he’s finished.) Warning; this will change how you see avocados.

Conventions:

MidAmeriCon II Logo

MidAmeriCon II Logo

World Con – MidAmeriCon II – starts today! Several of us, including Kat, Kelly, Kate, Bill and me will be at the convention various days. If you’re at the Con, we’d love to meet you. We’ll be wearing our Fantasy Literature T-Shirts –look for us! You can also check the FanLit Twitter feed (@FanLit) throughout the Con. 

Awards:

The short list for the Dragon Awards, to be inaugurated at this year’s Dragon Con, is out. You may remember this is the brand new award based strictly on a popular vote. It’s an interesting list; both what made the cut and didn’t make the cut are discussion-worthy. (John Scalzi has requested that The End of All Things be removed from the list in accordance with his wish that his work from 2015 not be considered for awards.)  If you want to vote, here’s the site:

Books and Writing:

After Fireside Fiction’s report on how underrepresented black writers are in science fiction, several publications reacted immediately by reaching out to known black SF writers, like the award-winning N.K. Jemisin, and asking her to submit work. Jemisin had an alternative suggestion and went on Twitter with it. Wired collected the tweet-lecture and added Jemisin’s additional comments here.

Our own Terry Weyna has talked about the dread of being stuck somewhere without reading material (although she has about 1 million books on her Kindle now, so I’m sure it’s less of a worry) and she is not alone, as Lit Hub points out in this charming essay.

Tor.com had some great gems last week. In this one, Michael Swanwick shares five literary fantasies you will not find in the Fantasy section of your bookstore.

Ursula LeGuin keeps a great blog at Book Café, but did know that her cat, Pard, does too? Stubby the Rocket gives us the scoop.

Masked, a translation of a French graphic novel, will make its debut as an ongoing monthly. What is going on with Paris, indeed? And what do you think of this artwork?

WARNING: EXTREME SPOILERS. IO9’s comics editor James Whitbrook tackled DC’s new “Superwoman” series. This article is interesting, and it definitely spoils the plot, if you worry about that at all. Still a story that brings Lois Lane and Lana Lang together as allies sound pretty interesting.

Geoff Ryman, gifted and somewhat controversial speculative fiction writer, is starting a series of profiles with BoingBoing. Here is the first of The 100 African SFF writers you should be reading. I’m torn between, “Yaaaay!” and “More books, must make room!” Life is complicated.

In all things Max Gladstone, on the heels of the announcement that he will be moving to Tor.com Publishing came word of the next book in the CRAFT SEQUENCE; Six Feet Over. Here is a Q&A about the book and the imprint move.

Movies and TV:

Is it just me, or does the trailer for Rogue One; a Star Wars Story seem a bit somber?

Sony is pinning hopes on its winter-holiday release, an SF romance (maybe?) called Passengers, starring Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence. IO9 has the scoop.

Dream Dangerously is now available through Vimeo, and who wouldn’t want to see a documentary about Neil Gaiman? Tor has the article.

Sarah Gailey talks about the Disney female villains and what they mean for us.

Internet:

IO9 is one of my staple sites for news for this column. IO9 was purchased by Gizmodo, which was owned by Gawker (which also owns Jezebel and Deadspin). Gawker lost a lawsuit brought by a former wrestling celebrity, and has declared bankruptcy. It turned out that the wrestler’s lawsuit was funded by a Silicon Valley tech billionaire who has had a grudge against Gawker for years. Gawker goes up for sale this week, and no one really knows what this means for IO9 or the other sites. (Or Gawker, for that matter). I really hope IO9 continues in some version close to what it is now—and Jezebel too.

(I think there’s a caped hero story here; destroyed by an unscrupulous tech billionaire, plucky journalist site Gawker moves into its mom’s basement, creates a mask and cape outfit, and becomes Gawker the Retaliator, wreaking vengeance on tech billionaires. Maybe it could be a CW series.)

Tech:

Valerie Palladino from Ars Technica demonstrates the latest generation of phone booth in New York City. It’s pretty cool.

Space:

Did you enjoy last week’s meteor shower? If, like me, you were someplace fogged in, NASA has put together some images for you.

Earth:

Atlas Obscura, one of my favorite sites, presents the pinball arcade museum in Banning, CA. Next time you’re on your way to Palm Springs to play some golf, do stop by. Unfortunately, the museum cannot be open daily, and currently opens for special events only.

A group of human pedestrians cheerlead some ducklings in this You Tube video. It’s especially for those of you who might be having a hard week.

Art:

Fine Art One’s video imagines getting lost in classic paintings.


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MARION DEEDS, with us since March 2011, is retired from a 35-year career with county government, where she met enough interesting characters and heard enough zany stories to inspire at least two trilogies’ worth of fantasy fiction. Currently she spends part of her time working at a local used bookstore. She is an aspiring writer herself and, in the 1990s, had short fiction published in small magazines like Night Terrors, Aberrations, and in the cross-genre anthology The Magic Within. On her blog Deeds & Words, she reviews many types of books and follows developments in food policy and other topics.

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2 comments

  1. It’s just been announced that Gawker will cease publication upon acquisition. I hope io9 will continue, but there’s no work about that yet that I can find. I wasn’t too happy when io9 was acquired by Gawker in the first place — the emphasis slipped dramatically away from books and into television, movies and technology — if it’s going to be independent (or mostly so) again, that would actually be good news.

    I hope you all have a fabulous time at WorldCon, and I sure wish I were there with you. Maybe next year in Finland!

    • I think I saw that Univision is the buyer. (?) They may be more interested in Gizmodo and IO9. I hope that IO9 continues and returns to its former flavor.

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