WWWednesday: November 14, 2018

Obituaries:

Stan Lee

Stan Lee

I chose Polygon’s obituary of Stan Lee, the creator of what we now call the Marvel universe, over the many articles. Lee passed away on November 12, at the age of 95. Lee’s impact on the American culture will take decades to fully reveal itself, but the ugliness of the past two years, with elder abuse charges and restraining orders, are only a blip in the long life of a man who has given each of us indelible memories and heroes with whom we can identify.

Insider compiled all of Stan Lee’s cameos over the years.

The man who shepherded San Diego Comic-Con through its period of intense growth has passed away of a brain tumor. File 770 shares the obituary of John Rogers.

Conventions:

Arisia, a Boston convention mired in controversy over how a sexual assault complaint was (or was not) handled, is holding a special election. The convention, which is scheduled for January 2019, may also lose its venue because the hotel staff of the hotel in question are currently striking. Arisia is having a very bad week. (This is a long article.) UPDATE: Here are the election results.

Con or Bust, which helps fund people of color who want to attend cons, will now only accept donated memberships from cons whose code of conduct meets Con of Bust’s guidelines. The guidelines are spelled out here. By accepted a donated membership from a specific con, they feel that they are promoting it, so they want to be sure that they are promoting events that value and protect safety for everyone. People requesting assistance from Con or Bust can still request it for any convention they wish.

Books and Writing:

An editor at Uncanny Magazine reveals a secret; how writing fanfic helped her become a better editor.

Merriam-Webster tests your knowledge of mythical beasts. I got 9/13, which isn’t very good, but is still in the top 35%.

Another of those lists: the 50 best debut novels in SF. What do you think?

Publishers did quite well in the third quarter of 2018, according to Publishers Weekly.

I bet Newt would score better on the mythical beast quiz than I did. (C) Disney 2018

I bet Newt would score better on the mythical beast quiz than I did. (C) Disney 2018

Publishers Weekly also introduced this short Stephen King novel with debuted in the top 10 of the Bestsellers List. “A sweet and melancholy short novel”… by the master of horror. What the heck?

Alexandra Rowland shares with us the conception of her new book A Conspiracy of Truths. This not only made me interested in the book, it make me laugh.

On Criminal Elements, mystery writer Diane A.S. Stuckart writes about five feline sleuths, while admitting that the Cheshire Cat does not solve any mysteries.

Speaking of crimes, I mean, crime fiction, here’s a list of ten crime novels that slip sideways into speculative fiction, including anthropomorphic chickens and shark deities.

In 2014, Book Smugglers expanded into publishing novellas and novels. As of 12/13/18, they will contract, limiting their new fiction to short stories offered for free on their website.

It’s been a while since I’ve linked to a cocktail story. The Economist’s life-style spinoff 1843 reviews a book of cocktails based on the works of famous spy-writer Ian Fleming. Cheers!

TV and Movies:

The Satanic Temple loves its lawsuits! It has filed suit against Netflix for the use of a statue of a pagan deity on The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Apparently the Temple believes it has the copyright on the image. We’ll see how it goes. Thanks to File 770, who, by the way, couldn’t resist writing “The Satanic Versus Netflix.” Good one, you guys.

Part of the sets used for the show Westworld, as well as other shows like Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, burned as part of last week’s California firestorm. Since 27,000 people in the town of Paradise, CA, lost every single building, you’ll understand if I’m just not that sad about Westworld.

What do you give the universe’s supreme mischief-maker? Why, his own series, of course! Disney’s streaming service plans to do just that with Tom Hiddleston as Loki.

Fantastic Beasts; the Crimes of Grindelwald opens tomorrow. Early reviews, though, are not particularly kind.  Screen Rant gathered together some of the harshest. The U.K. Independent also did a round-up and they had some more positive comments about the film. I don’t think it really matters; it’s in the Harry Potter universe and fans will still flock to see it.

Internet:

Imagine this in your workplace cafeteria! And the person in the blue shirt, near the head, just turns their back on it!

IO9’s toy column gives you some of the coolest action figures of the week, since we seem to be heading into some kind of shopping season.

Space:

Asteroid VA2 got pretty close to us, I guess.

Earth:

BBC gives us a preview of the “painted wolves of Zimbabwe,” which are neither wolves nor wild dogs but yet another variety of canid. Warning; there is one disturbing image in this article.


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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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4 comments

  1. Paul Connelly /

    I tend to think that the 10 Best, 20 Greatest, 50 Hot New whatever type lists from Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Tor, et al., are just another form of advertising. As are the minimalistic “reviews” and author interviews on some blog websites (not this one). It’s getting extremely difficult to avoid being subjected to marketing and advertising in the guise of something else.

    • Yes, the lists feel a little desperate to me sometimes. I’m waiting for the “15 Best Spec Fic Novels released on a Tuesday in a Month With an R In It” list to appear.

      Generally, I enjoy the Best of the Year lists everyone puts out, though.

  2. Fun – and tough! – monster quiz. I got 8/13, but only with some liberal guessing.

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