Links for June 21, 2012

Cliffhangers are now a thing in television.  Some of them are resolved well.  Here is io9’s list of cliffhangers that paid off.  I was very worried as I scanned down the list…but I finally found that they’d saved the most deserving entry for last.

I’m not sure whether this depresses me or amuses me more.  DC Comics doesn’t like Ohio’s new Superman license plate.  Superman, you see, was born in Krypton — not Ohio.  :::sighs:::

Mike Brotherton fixes Prometheus so you don’t have to.  It’s a pity no one hired him before they shot the film.

Nathan Shumate attempts profundity.  And, in my not-so-humble opinion, manages it.

Finally, Richard Lynch is dead at 76.  Very sad.  He should be better-remembered.

There may or may not be an additional post later this evening.  Probably not, though, as I still have to finish my mega-length Meredith Vickers post from earlier in the week.  So I may just see you tomorrow.  I don’t yet know whether there will be multiple posts then, but I can promise you a new Kindle review of The Sixth Seed by Lee Allen Howard.

Published in: on June 21, 2012 at 9:35 pm  Comments (1)  

Links for June 20, 2012

It appears that today is a recommendation day.

Looking for an interesting read?  The latest Mind Meld at SFSignal has you covered.

Speaking of books, are you looking for a “patch” for that favorite show you lost?  These books might help.

Speaking of visual entertainment, here are fifty movies to avoid.  Unless you’re into bad films, like these people.

And speaking of a non sequitur, Larry Correia is excited about a Czech book trailer for a novel of his.

Published in: on June 20, 2012 at 8:47 pm  Leave a Comment  

Links for June 19, 2012

More money made from e-books than hardcover books last quarter.  The times, they are a-changin’.  With the cheaper price of e-books and the ability to read them on free programs you can download to your computer, anyone with a magic box has both the opportunity and incentive to join the revolution.

Fewer people are going to the movies — less than 5% attend “frequently.”  This shouldn’t be a surprise.  Tickets cost a lot, and concession prices are through the roof.  So many people with bad manners feel free to text or talk in the theater, blissfully unaware of the fate they face.  And as movies get bigger and bigger, there are fewer and fewer made.

Speaking of big movies — did Loki win in The Avengers?

Expect me to respond to this post on why magic shouldn’t need rules within a couple of days.

Should we allow our characters to be unapologetic “exceptions to the rule?”  Here’s a strong argument why we should.

Brandon Sanderson talks The Way of Kings.  At some point, I’ll need to read it.  I love Sanderson.  Platonically.

From Jared Garrett, a dispiriting workshop experience spawns a great resolution:  100 Days of Positive.  I’m a little late to the party, Jared, but I’ll join you.

We close on a down note today, as a great small business goes under.  My friends, I’m stepping up on my soapbox.  If you have a small business like this in your community that you value, you have to support it.  Otherwise you won’t keep it.  And anyone who’s been to a great comic book store knows that losing one is all downside.

(Most links today via Grasping for the Wind.)

Published in: on June 19, 2012 at 6:42 pm  Leave a Comment  

Links for June 18, 2012

Come, let me tell you a secret.  I have never read any of the Ringworld novels.  Don’t look at me that way.  I meant to.  Honest I did.  But there was the thing, and then there was that other thing, and then stuff kind of happened…

Anyway, this great piece on Larry Niven may guilt me into finally picking up his most famous works.

A thought-provoking essay on mythology in urban fantasy.  It doubles as a great reading list, for those interested in exploring the genre more.

Is humanity doomed if our galaxy is crowded?

We might be if our extraterrestrial friends have this attitude toward Star Trek.  The following is not meant to be disrespectful toward S.C. Butler, or to defend the franchise as a whole.  Fan though I am, my honesty compels me to admit the large number of episodes and films which are mediocre to bad.  But if you’re going to entitle an essay “Did Star Trek Wreck SF?” then I don’t think it’s an unreasonable demand that at some point you try to answer the question.

To close, here’s a book I will be picking up:  a Ray Bradbury tribute collection of never-before-published short stories.

Published in: on June 18, 2012 at 7:07 pm  Leave a Comment  

Links for June 15, 2012

Here’s a further discussion on what exactly Meredith Vickers is.  (Spoilers at the link.)  Apparently my answer is not very popular.  Next week, in lieu of a post on a new film — since I’ve seen and reviewed everything that is currently out which would be pertinent to this blog — I’ll give my take on some of those arguments.

A great retrospective from io9 on the overlooked work of Fredric Brown.

Want to find alien life?  Search for Dyson spheres.

This has always been one of my favorite stories.  Michael Malloy’s resistance to death bordered on the supernatural.  Now you too can read and marvel at what it took to bring him down.  There must be a screenplay in here somewhere.

A video to send you on your way.

Published in: on June 15, 2012 at 6:47 pm  Leave a Comment  

Links for June 14, 2012: All About Writing

All links today courtesy of the invaluable SFSignal.com — you should make it a daily visit.

Want to write?  Don’t plan small, plan large.  Perhaps even a dozen books a year.  My prediction:  with Kindle, you’ll see more and more authors taking on this “serial” mentality.  Why not, after all?  Write twelve slim novels a year, sell an average of just 2000 copies of each at the now-standard $2.99 price, and your royalties will be over $45,000. (more…)

Published in: on June 14, 2012 at 6:21 pm  Leave a Comment  

Links for June 12, 2012

Okay, so they’re taking great care in the update of Total Recall.  And to be fair, the trailer looks superb.  I will probably go see the movie, and I’ll probably even review it for this site, though I’m unhappy with the jettisoning of the Mars angle.  But the big question still remains.  Why update a film that was done so well?  I don’t think the time has yet arrived where “Because we can make it so much more cool” is a sufficient answer, though I’m willing to be proven wrong.

Robert Jackson Bennett explains the danger of cool ideas.  The short version:  those ideas can sabotage your story by taking it over or sending it off-course.  I learned a great deal in reading it, and I recommend it highly.

Two valuable pieces over at RevolutionSF.  First is a somewhat sarcastic look at the “adopted” joke in The Avengers.  My personal take:  this should be labeled a non-troversy.  While I don’t wish to devalue anyone’s feelings, those who were so greatly offended by Thor’s laugh line that they campaigned against it should probably devote a little more effort to solving the actual problems that adopted and foster children face.  (Full disclosure:  I was not adopted, nor was I a foster child.)

Second, a lovely retrospective on Ray Bradbury.

Published in: on June 12, 2012 at 9:26 pm  Leave a Comment  

Like Prometheus with fire, I bring links to the masses

Have you seen Prometheus and were curious about a few things?  Here are some answers.

Have you not seen Prometheus and are wondering if you should?  Here’s a succinct and fair review from James over at Big Dumb Object.  For those interested, my own review will be out later this evening.

Do you not particularly care about Prometheus one way or the other?  Well, then, try one of these other questions:

Which female superheroes would be best to base a film on?

What crazy TV show concepts are we going to see from Syfy next?

What would Lego-Inception look like?

Will I ever talk about a book again on this site?

My answers:  Wonder Woman, “You watch those?” followed by an incredulous stare, Legorrific, and stay tuned.  This Friday I’ll be posting a review of the novel Mad Science Institute by Sechin Tower.

Published in: on June 11, 2012 at 9:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

Thoughts on Writing Ideas, and Related Links

I’m writing again.

You have no idea how good it feels to say that.

More to the point, I’ve learned from my mistakes.  Part of what I did during my latest multi-month hiatus from blogging was to take a long hard look at why I suddenly found it so hard to write.  The biggest conclusion I came to:  I was working too hard on coming up with ideas, and then spending them almost as soon as I had them.  It exhausted me.

Here, let me show you an example: (more…)

Published in: on May 24, 2012 at 9:33 pm  Leave a Comment  

Vision in Science Fiction, and Other Links

Click here for a fascinating discussion on whether sci-fi is still the “big idea” genre.

Then click here for a typically thoughtful post from James over at Big Dumb Object.

Then click here for my own unworthy thoughts. (more…)

Published in: on May 23, 2012 at 9:21 pm  Leave a Comment