(1) CLARION WEST NEXT SUMMER. The lineup of instructors for Clarion West’s 2022 In-Person Summer Workshop has been announced. The Clarion West 2022 Six-Week Summer Workshop will take place from June 19 – July 30, 2022 in Seattle. Applications for the 2022 Summer Workshop open in December 2021.
- Week 1 – Susan Palwick
- Week 2 – P. Djèlí Clark
- Week 3 – Fonda Lee
- Week 4 – Tobias S. Buckell
- Week 5 – Bill Campbell
- Week 6 – Annalee Newitz and Charlie Jane Anders
(2) CLARION WEST THIS FALL. Clarion West also previewed their Fall 2021 lineup of Online Classes & Workshops which includes “but is definitely not limited to” —
- “Hiding the Infodump and Fluffing the Scenecraft” with Henry Lien,
- “The Rule of Three” and writing trilogies with Fonda Lee,
- A multi-session editing workshop with Cat Rambo,
- Writing the modern Southern gothic with Eden Royce.
(3) BIPOC HORROR ANTHOLOGY KICKSTARTER IS LIVE. A Kickstarter appeal launched today to publish the anthology “Death in the Mouth: Original Horror By People of Color” edited by Sloane Leong and Cassie Hart. They have raised $4,086 of their $35,000 goal in the first twelve hours. The fundraiser continues until September 1.
- This horror anthology will showcase BIPOC and other ethnically marginalized writers and artists from around the world.
- It will feature 20 prose stories, each accompanied by an original illustration by a unique artist.
- Authors contributing: C Pam Zhang (How Much of These Hills Is Gold), Darcie Little Badger (Elatsoe), Jewelle Gomez (The Gilda Stories), An Owomoyela (Abandonware), Karin Lowachee (Warchild), Jahra Wasasala (MOTHER/JAW), K-Ming Chang (Bestiary), and many more!
- Artists contributing: Michael Deforge, Joy San, Jabari Weathers, Makoto Chi, Allissa Chan, Alicia Feng, and Natalie Hall and more.
- Once funded, the editors will also hold an open call for submissions.
(4) DRAGON CON ISSUES GUIDELINES. Today Dragon Con announced everyone will wear masks at the con: “Updates – Dragon Con”. There are some additional rules about room capacity and traffic flow at the link.
Face masks and reduced attendance
In 2021, Dragon Con will have reduced capacity from prior years. We have worked closely with our hotels and AmericasMart to determine how many people are permitted in the buildings each day and at a given time and taken further steps to reduce capacity to allow for personal spacing.
They also will have limits on their traditional parade and who can view it live:
We have received our parade permit and at this time will host a modified and scaled back parade. A Dragon Con membership is required to view the parade live and in person for 2021. All others can watch the parade on CW69, our broadcast partner, or on line at YouTube and other social media platforms.
(5) NOT JUST ANYBODY CAN DO IT. Delilah S. Dawson shared some behind-the-scenes info about writing IP books. Thread starts here. (Am I wrong to equate these with media tie-in books? Today was my first encounter with the “IP books” term.)
(6) CONVERSATION WITH ISHIGURO. The Washington Post ran an abridged version of this interview with Sir Kazuo Ichiguro, but here’s a full transcript from Nashville Public Television.
Ishiguro: I can’t imagine what kind of person or what kind of writer I’d be if I hadn’t experienced parenthood. It’s not just the actual hardcore experiences that you have, worrying about your child’s exams and stuff like that. Your perspective shifts. Many, many people will tell you this. Your perspective shifts. Emotionally, intellectually, you look at the world differently. I think your perspective becomes longer as well. You’re not just looking at things in your own lifetime. You see things in terms of your child’s lifetime, your grandchildren’s lifetime, your great grandchildren’s lifetime. The way you look at life, our existence, everything seems to change. And it changes at that kind of empathetic, emotional level.
Occasionally I come across writers who say if you have children it messes up your career. I think this is a profound mistake, unless you think a writing career is just about sitting down and producing a certain quantity of writing.
(7) MEDIA BIRTHDAY.
August 1, 1928 — Ninety-three years ago on this date, Buck Rogers (then named Anthony Rogers) makes his first appearance in the “Armageddon 2419 A.D” novella by Philip Francis Nowlan who would later become a member of the First Fandom Hall of Fame. It was published in the August 1928 issue of Amazing Stories, edited by Hugo Gernsback. A sequel novella called “The Airlords of Han” was published in the March 1929 issue of Amazing Stories. Fifty years later, they would become a single novel as editor Donald A. Wollheim of Ace Books had them combined into one narrative. Spin-offs from the novel would include a Thirties newspaper comic strip, a Thirties Buck Rogers in the 25th Century radio program, a Thirties movie serial Buck Rogers, a Seventies television series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century and the Buck Rogers in the 25th Century film.
(8) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.
[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]
- Born August 1, 1862 — M.R. James. Writer of some of the best ghost stories ever done. A Pleasing Terror: The Complete Supernatural Writings, released in 2001 from Ash-Tree Press has forty stories which includes the thirty stories from Collected Ghost Stories plus the 3 tales published after that, and the seven from The Fenstanton Witch and Others. It’s apparently the most complete collection of his stories to date. Or so I though until I checked online. The Complete Ghost Stories of M.R. James, over seven hundred pages, is available from the usual suspects for a mere buck ninety nine! (Died 1936.)
- Born August 1, 1910 — Raymond A. Palmer. Editor of Amazing Stories from 1938 through 1949. He’s credited, along with Walter Dennis, with editing the first fanzine, The Comet, in May, 1930. The secret identity of DC character the Atom as created by genre writer Gardner Fox is named after Palmer. Very little of his fiction is available from the usual suspects. (Died 1977.)
- Born August 1, 1930 — Geoffrey Holder. You’ll likely best remember him for his performance as Baron Samedi in Live and Let Die but he’s also the narrator in Tim Burton’s Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. He was also Willie Shakespeare in Doctor Doolittle but it’s been so long since I saw the film that I can’t picture his character. And he was The Cheshire Cat in the Alice in Wonderland that had Richard Burton as The White Knight. Weird film that. (Died 2014.)
- Born August 1, 1941 — Craig Littler, 80. His main genre role was as space adventurer Jason in Jason of Star Command which of course James Doohan was in. If you looked closely you’ll spot him briefly in Blazing Saddles as Tex and Rosemary’s Baby as Jimmy as well. And he has one-offs in The Next Beyond, AirWolf and Team Knight Rider.
- Born August 1, 1945 — Yvonne Rousseau. Australian author, editor and critic. She edited the Australian Science Fiction Review in the late Eighties. She wrote one work of non-fiction, Minmers Marooned and Planet of the Marsupials: The Science Fiction Novels of Cherry Wilder, and has a handful of stories to her name. She got nominated for three Ditmar Awards for her fan writing. (Died 2021.)
- Born August 1, 1955 — Annabel Jankel, 66. Director who was first a music video director and then the co-creator and director of Max Headroom. She and her partner Rocky Morton first created and directed The Max Talking Headroom Show, a mix of interviews and music vids which aired on Channel 4 (UK) (where it was sponsored by Coca-Cola) and HBO. Jankel and Morton would go on to direct Super Mario Bros. And they’re both responsible for the Max Headroom movie and series.
- Born August 1, 1979 — Jason Momoa, 42. I knew I’d seen him before he showed up as Aquaman in the DC film franchise and I was right as he was Ronon Dex on Stargate Atlantis for its entire run. He was also Khal Drogo in the first season of A Game of Thrones. And not surprisingly, he was the title character in the recent Conan the Barbarian film.
- Born August 1, 1993 — Tomi Adeyemi, 28. Nigerian born author. She won a Lodestar Award at Dublin 2019 for her Children of Blood and Bone novel which also won her an Andre Norton Award. That novel was nominated for a BFA, a Kitchie and a Nommo. Her latest in that series is Children of Virtue and Vengeance.
(9) COMICS SECTION.
- Marmaduke entertains a visitor from outer space.
(10) HAMMER HAND. Here’s one we can all play. Entertainment Earth asked: “What character NOT from the Marvel universe do you think would be worthy of wielding Mjolnir?”
Paul Weimer tweeted a great set of answers (Atticus Finch!!) See what you can do.
(11) OOPS. H&I points out “10 Minor Goofs You Never Noticed In ‘Star Trek'”.
4. A WOODEN STARSHIP
“Errand of Mercy”
In the opening, as the Enterprise is attacked by a Klingon vessel, you can see that the floor behind Nimoy has not been painted. The bare wood is exposed on the elevated part of the bridge.
(12) UMBRELLA ARRIVING. This video announces that Mary Poppins will be reopening in London on August 7. (Petula Clark as the Bird Woman – where has the time gone? Petula was singing pop hits when the ancient Jane Darwell played that character in the original Disney movie.)
Mary Poppins is back in London! Whipping the barriers off the Prince Edward Theatre, Zizi Strallen prepares to return to wowing London audiences. Leading the show are the previously announced Zizi Strallen as Mary Poppins and Charlie Stemp as Bert, joined by Charlie Anson as George Banks, Amy Griffiths as Winifred Banks, Petula Clark as Bird Woman, Liz Robertson as Miss Andrew, Claire Machin as Mrs Brill, Jack North as Robertson Ay and Paul F Monaghan as Admiral Boom and Bank Chairman.
(13) BIRD BRAINS. “Big brains may have helped birds survive dinosaur-killing asteroid” – Yahoo! has the latest speculation.
Just a few million years before an asteroid killed nearly all dinosaurs on Earth, a creature resembling a small albatross with teeth flew through the Cretaceous skies. The creature, known as Ichthyornis, is considered an early bird — but not part of the lucky lineage that survived the mass extinction and gave rise to modern birds.
Now, a newly discovered Ichthyornis fossil sheds light on why some early birds survived the asteroid-triggered catastrophe known as the K-Pg extinction, while close relatives like Ichthyornis perished. The key may have been a vastly expanded forebrain — a trait that all modern birds possess, but Ichthyornis and other extinct lineages lack….
(14) TINY EFFECTS. “Dorset photographer shoots Star Wars Lego in cinematic style” – BBC News shares an intriguing video at the link.
Not content with merely building his Star Wars Lego kits, photographer Daniel Sands has found another use for his collection.
The 34-year-old Dorset photographer tested his creativity during lockdown by putting his models into the action of the movie universe.
He said he uses everyday items such as baking soda and the ashes from his barbecue to give his pictures a cinematic look.
Creative or realistic toy photography is a growing trend on social media, and Star Wars star Mark Hamill has even liked one of his posts.
[Thanks to Martin Morse Wooster, JJ, Michael Toman, Sloan Leong, John King Tarpinian, Cat Eldridge, Mike Kennedy, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to contributing editor of the day Rob Thornton.]