Pixel Scroll 9/6/19 The Soylent Green Hills of Earth

(1) EATING THE FANTASTIC. Scott Edelman invites listeners to chow down on chowder with the award-winning Jack Dann in episode 104 of his Eating the Fantastic podcast.

Jack’s an old friend I see far too infrequently ever since he moved to Australia. I was privileged to publish a story of his in Science Fiction Age back in the ’90s, but that’s the least of his accomplishments. His first novel, The Man Who Melted, was nominated for a 1984 Nebula Award, and since then he’s gone on to win a Nebula Award, two World Fantasy Awards, three Ditmar Awards, and the Peter McNamara Award for Excellence. His short story collections include Timetipping, Jubilee: the Essential Jack Dann, and Visitations. His 1998 anthology Dreaming Down-Under (co-edited with his wife Janeen Webb) is a groundbreaking work in Australian science fiction.

He’s also created some amazing stories in collaboration with the likes of Michael Swanwick, Gardner Dozois, Barry Malzberg, and others, and since you know from listening to Eating the Fantastic that collaboration completely baffles me, we dove into a discussion of that as well.

We stepped out to The Chowder House, which has been in operation since 1985, but has a history which goes all the way back to 1920, when Darcy’s Irish Pub opened — and over the decades expanded into a row of family-owned restaurants. It was a comfortable spot, with good food, and the perfect place for us to catch up after far too long apart.

We discussed the novel he and Gardner Dozois always planned to write but never did, how a botched appendectomy at age 20 which left him with only a 5% chance of survival inspired one of his most famous stories, why he quit law school the day after he sold a story to Damon Knight’s Orbit series, the bad writing advice he gave Joe Haldeman early on we’re glad got ignored, the secrets to successful collaborations, the time Ellen Datlow acted as referee on a story he wrote with Michael Swanwick, how it felt thanks to his novel The Man Who Melted to be a meme before we began living in a world of memes, why he’s drawn to writing historical novels which require such a tremendous amount of research, the time he was asked to channel the erotica of Anaïs Nin, the gift he got from his father that taught him to take joy in every moment — and much more.

Jack Dann

(2) RSR LAUNCHES IMPROVEMENT. Rocket Stack Rank announces “New Filtering and Simplified Highlighting” in an article that analyzes the most awards won, award nominations earned, and inclusion in year’s best TOC for short fiction from 2015-2018 by using the new filtering features added to RSR.

You can now filter stories in a table to show only the ones recognized with SF/F awards, year’s best anthologies, or prolific reviewers. Click the “Show:” drop-down list in the table header and choose one of the options (see image on the right). This is an easy way to dis-aggregate scores to see which stories received the most recognition by each type of recommendation for readers who favor one type over a combined score of all three.

(3) THE DELTA QUADRANT PRIMARY. [Item by Olav Rokne.] Senator Cory Booker is trying to acquire the votes of undecided Trekkies by showing off his nerd cred. The 50-year-old challenger for the Democratic nomination spoke to the New York Times today about his love for all things Star Trek, and how the show has influenced his politics: “How ‘Star Trek’ Pushed Cory Booker to Make It So”.

What did your father see in Trek?

It was hope.

“Star Trek” was more than just an escape. It was a portal to say the future is going to be different. It’s incredibly hopeful and a belief that we’re going to get beyond a lot of these lines. We’re going to unite as humanity. It’ll be a place where your virtue guides you, the highest of human aspirations. I think there’s something about that he found really powerful.

Do you think you took it in differently as a person of color?

I took it in through that lens because I really believe that was the lens that compelled my father. My dad loved UFOs. When that television series “Project Blue Book” came out, that was another thing. He was fascinated by the universe and excited about it.

This idea that we as humans, where we are right now, are literally just not even at the foothills yet of the mountains of discovery that are out there. He was a man of infinite hope. “Star Trek” gave him that. It showed him that we are going to overcome so much of the stuff that rips at humanity now.

(4) SNEAK PREVIEW. Unusual drama and security accompanied The Testaments’ submission to Booker Prize judges the New York Times reports: “Judging Margaret Atwood’s Top Secret New Novel”.

In July, the author Xiaolu Guo was expecting the delivery of a book that would not be published until September: Margaret Atwood’s “The Testaments,” the highly anticipated follow-up to “The Handmaid’s Tale.”

Guo was getting her copy so early because she is a judge for this year’s Booker Prize, Britain’s most prestigious literary award. There was just one problem, Guo said in an interview on Tuesday: When the courier turned up, she was late getting home from the airport. The courier refused to give the book to her brother and sister-in-law, who were visiting from China.

Guo missed the courier’s visit the next day, too, as she was out running errands. By the time she finally got the book, she was furious, she said.

“For me, it was quite over the top, the whole security issue,” Guo added, laughing.

The secrecy around Atwood’s new novel, which is on the Booker Prize shortlist that was announced this week, has complicated the judging process this year. The prize’s organizer had to sign a nondisclosure agreement on behalf of all the judges, said Peter Florence, the chairman of the judging panel.

Secrecy agreements were not required for the 150 other novels that judges read to create an initial list of books in the running that was announced at the end of July. They then reread and argued over those thirteen titles to choose the final six.

At the shortlist announcement on Tuesday, all six books were piled on a table in front of the judges, among them Salman Rushdie’s “Quichotte” and Lucy Ellmann’s “Ducks, Newburyport.” But the copy of “The Testaments” was actually a dummy.

“That’s not the real Atwood, by the way, in case anyone’s thinking of stealing it,” Gaby Wood, the prize’s literary director, told reporters.

(5) GAY KISS GETS COMIC BANNED IN RIO. “‘Avengers’ Comic Featuring Gay Kiss Banned by Rio de Janeiro Authorities”The Hollywood Reporter has the story.

The collected edition of ‘Avengers: The Children’s Crusade’ has come under fire for featuring a kiss between two male characters.

In an unexpected move, Rio de Janeiro mayor Marcelo Crivella has announced that the translated edition of the Marvel comic book series Avengers: The Children’s Crusade would be removed from the literary festival Riocentro Bienal do Livro so as to protect the city’s children from what he described as “sexual content for minors.”

The so-called sexual content in question is an on-panel kiss between two male characters, Wiccan and Hulkling, who are in committed relationship. Both characters are clothed in the scene.

(6) STAR WARS SOUVENIR OKAYED TO FLY. A press release on the TSA.gov web site called “UPDATED: Statement on Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge themed soda bottles” says the TSA has relented on the “thermal detonator” soda bottles at Disneyland’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and is now treating the bottles like “oversized liquids” —

 “The issue concerning Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge-themed soda bottles has recently been brought to our attention by the general public, as these items could reasonably be seen by some as replica hand grenades. We appreciate the concerns being raised, because replica explosives are not permitted in either carry-on or checked bags. We have completed our review, and instructed our officers to treat these as an oversized liquid. Because these bottles contain liquids larger than 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters), they should be put in checked baggage or emptied to be brought on as carry-on item. TSA officers will maintain the discretion to prohibit any item through the screening checkpoint if they believe it poses a security threat.”

(7) DUFF FUNDRAISER. Paul Weimer says, “I am auctioning a print of one of my photos to raise money for DUFF” – the Down Under Fan Fund. See it at eBay: 10″x13″ matboarded metallic print of Mt. Taranaki, New Zealand.

(8) GRAPHIC DETAILS. Joshua Corin begins Big Thrill’s “Getting Graphic: Sequential Crime” with “An Introduction to Crime-Inspired Graphic Novels and Comics.”

It’s 1962 in Milan and a former fashion model, Angela Guissana, is looking for material for a small publishing house she and her sister Luciana have opened.  She studies the reading tastes of the local commuters and concludes that thrillers—such as those featuring criminal mastermind Fantomas—are in.

Rather than hire someone else to forge ahead with their new thriller, she and her sister write the book themselves. To increase its appeal, they present the book as a fumetto, an Italian variation on the comic book format that has recently proven so popular in Europe with Tintin and Tex Willer—also thrillers. They make sure that each volume can fit inside a businessman’s coat pocket.

Thus, the Guissana sisters create Diabolik, which has in the 60 years since its inception, sold more than 150 million copies.

(9) TODAY IN HISTORY.

  • September 6, 1953  — Hugo awards first presented at Philcon II (the second Philadelphia Worldcon).
  • September 6, 1956  — Fire Maidens from Outer Space premiered. A group of astronauts lands on a moon of Jupiter only to find it inhabited with sexy maidens. Well, and a hideous monster of course.

(10) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born September 6, 1904 Groff Conklin. He edited some forty anthologies of genre fiction starting The Best of Science Fiction from Crown Publishers in 1946 to Seven Trips Through Time and Space on Fawcett Gold in 1968. The contents are fairly a mix of the obscure and well known as Heinlein, Niven, Simak, Dahl, Sturgeon, Lovecraft and Bradbury show up here. (Died 1968.)
  • Born September 6, 1943 Roger Waters, 76. Ok, I’m stretching it. Is Pink Floyd genre? The Wall maybe. Or The Division Bell with its themes of communication. Or maybe I just wanted to say Happy Birthday Roger!
  • Born September 6, 1946 Hal Haag. Baltimore-area fan who found fandom in the early Eighties and who chaired Balticon 25 and Balticon 35 and worked on Balticon and quite a number of regionals.  He Co-founded BWSMOF (Baltimore/Washington SMOFs) along with Inge Heyer from Shore Leave, a regional organization whose purpose it is to discuss running regional conventions of all types. The Baltimore Science Fiction Society put together a very touching memorial site which you can see here. (Died 2006.)
  • Born September 6, 1953 Patti Yasutake, 66. Best-known for her portrayal of Nurse Alyssa Ogawa in the Trek universe where she had a recurring role on Next Generation and showed up in Star Trek Generations and Star Trek First Contact. In doing these Birthdays, I consult a number of sites. Several of them declared that her character ended her time as a Doctor. Not true but made for a nice coda on her story. 
  • Born September 6, 1958 Michael Winslow, 61. Though he might bear as the comically voiced Radar Technicianin Space Balls, I’m more interested that his first genre role of significance was giving voice to Mogwai and the other gremlins in Gremlins, a role he didn’t reprise for the second Gremlins film. 
  • Born September 6, 1972 China Miéville, 47. My favorite novels by him? The City & The City is the one I’ve re-read the most, followed closely by Kraken. Scariest by him? Oh, that’d King Rat by a long shot. And I’ll admit the dialect he used in Un Lun Dun frustrated me enough that I gave up on it. I’ll hold strongly that the New Crobuzon series doesn’t date as well as some of his other fiction does. 
  • Born September 6, 1972 Idris Elba, 47. Heimdall in the Thor franchise, as well as the Avengers franchise. First genre role was as Captain Janek in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus and later he was in Pacific Rim as Stacker Pentecost. And let’s not forget him as the Big Bad as Krall in Star Trek: Beyond
  • Born September 6, 1976 Robin Atkin Downes, 43. Though he’s made his living being a voice actor in myriad video games and animated series, one of his first acting roles was as the rogue telepath Byron on Babylon 5. He later shows up as the Demon of Illusion in the “Chick Flick” episode of Charmed and he’s got an uncredited though apparently known role as Pockla in the “Dead End” episode of Angel. Ditto for Repo Men as well. He does get as the voice of Edward in Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters.
  • Born September 6, 1976 –Naomie Harris, 43. She’s Eve Moneypenny in Skyfall, Spectre and the forthcoming No Time to Die. This was the first time Moneypenny had a first name. She also appeared in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End as Tia Dalma. And lastly I’ll note she played Elizabeth Lavenza in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein at the National Theatre. 

(11) COMICS SECTION.

  • Molly Ostertag drew a K&S comic strip for Sam and Frodo. Hampus Eckerman says, “I think a lot of filers might enjoy this little comic.” Thread starts here.
  • A new Tales From The Slushpile at Publishers Weekly.

(12) PREVIOUSLY UNSUSPECTED SCIENCE. Really?

(13) NOT DISNEY. BBC tells how “Team plans colour film of black hole at galaxy’s center”.

The team that took the first ever image of a black hole has announced plans to capture “razor sharp” full colour video of the one at the centre of our galaxy.

Satellites would be launched to supplement the existing network of eight telescopes to make this movie.

The researchers say the upgraded network will be able to see the supermassive black hole consuming the material around it.

The team has been awarded the Breakthrough Award for Physics.

Prof Heino Falcke, of Radboud University in the Netherlands, who proposed the idea of the so-called Event Horizon Telescope (EHT), told BBC News that the next step was to see a black hole in action.

“Just like planets, a black hole rotates. And because of its incredibly strong gravity, it distorts space and time around it. And so seeing this very weird effect of space itself being rotated is one of the holy grails of astrophysics.”

(14) A LITTLE LIST. At CrimeReads, John Marks points out “Seven Techno-Thrillers to Read as Our World Crumbles”.

Tristan Da Cunha is the most remote yet inhabited island in the world. With just 297 people living on the volcanic enclave, it’s more than 1,750 miles away from its nearest coast of South Africa. There are no airports, hotels, or bars and it is only reachable following a six-day boat ride. Yet for all it lacks, the island still has access to the internet. There is virtually nowhere on earth where you can truly escape from technology.

Authors, like me, who write speculatively about tech, are only limited by our imaginations. And that’s why we are fascinated by it, because it offers limitless potential.

Often it is far more of a challenge to create characters and worlds that are overshadowed by tech that goes askew than tech that gets it right.

(15) 20/20 HINDSIGHT. I was soon won around to the name changes, but feel a bit jaded to read such confident reassurances from people who a month ago had no more idea than anyone else that this was coming:

Nancy Jane Moore in “Against Nostalgia” at Book View Café.

…Given the list of winners at the Hugos — which are fan awards and therefore a good marker of what the people who love their SF/F think is important — times have changed dramatically. I see no reason why Ng or anyone else needs to pay homage to Campbell, who is clearly going to be a marginal person in the genre if he’s mentioned at all fifty years from now.

…Many of the stories published in the 1950s gave us those possibilities, but they did so in the trappings of their times. Confusing those trappings with science fiction makes us misunderstand what the genre is truly about. And being nostalgic about the trappings is silly.

The world that gave us those stories has changed, and stories set in outdated realities, even good ones, often don’t make sense to anyone who doesn’t live in that period. There are a lot of times when you need context, which doesn’t mean saying someone is a “product of their times” and skipping over what they did, but looking at other layers in the story (assuming it’s a story that’s worth spending that much time on).

These days the audience for science fiction is much broader than the mythical 13-year-old (white) boys the Golden Age fiction was supposedly aimed at. We have a strong need for science fiction that breaks us out of the misogyny and racism and colonialism on which so much of western culture has been built. And the audience is worldwide, drawing from their own cultures and experiences.

If you believe storytelling is a vital part of being human – and I do – you have to realize that there are a lot of ways to tell a story and a lot of different ideas of who might be the hero.

John Scalzi in “The Gunn Center Makes a Change, and Further Thoughts on the Reassessment of John W. Campbell” at Whatever.

…This will no doubt start another round of anguished wailing from certain quarters about the erasure of John W. Campbell from the annals of science fiction history. The answer to this is he’s not being erased, he’s merely being reassessed. And the reassessment is: His extensive paper trail of bigotry, reactionary thought and pseudo-scientific nonsense wasn’t a great look at the time — a fact amply detailed by a number of his contemporaries in the field — and it’s even less of a great look now. As a result, his name is being taken off some things it was on before, because it staying on them means those things (and the people administering those things) would then have to carry the freight of, and answer for, his bigotry, reactionary thought and pseudo-scientific nonsense. And they would rather not.

…People aren’t perfect and you take the good and the bad together — but every generation, and every person, gets to decide how to weigh the good and the bad, and to make judgments accordingly. In the early seventies, in the wake of Campbell’s passing, such was Campbell’s reputation in the field of science fiction that he could be memorialized by two separate awards in his name, and apparently nobody batted an eye (or if they did, they didn’t count). Nearly fifty years later and at the end of the second decade of the 21st century, such is Campbell’s reputation in the field of science fiction that Campbell’s name is off one award, and may be off the other soon enough. In another 50 years, Campbell’s reputation in the field may be different again, or may simply be what so many things are after a century, which is, a historical footnote.

(16) SCAVENGER’S FEAST. Meanwhile, Richard Paolinelli is hastening to fill the sudden vacuum of Campbell-named awards by adding one to his personal collection of honors: “New Category Added To The Helicons in 2020” [Internet Archive link].

“The Helicon Society is proud to announce that the 2020 Helicon Awards will also feature the inaugural John W. Campbell Diversity In SF/F Award.

The Society looks forward to honoring the award’s first-ever recipient next spring.”

I don’t know about you folks, but I’m pretty interested in finding out who this will be. Aren’t you?

These antics apparently help Paolinelli sell books. When he inaugurated his Helicon Awards earlier this year, Paolinelli also announced a pair of awards whose namesakes had recently been removed from awards by the American Library Association: the Melvil Dewey Innovation Award and Laura Ingalls Wilder Best New Author Award.

(17) BATTLE OF THE BULGE. In this week’s Science (the US version of Nature), Rosemary Wyse discusses “Galactic archaeology with Gaia”.

The past and present merger activity of the Milky Way galaxy has recently been put into sharp focus through the analysis of data from the Gaia astrometric satellite.

The emerging picture created is one of persistent disequilibrium, with high merger activity some 10 billion years ago that plausibly created the stellar halo and thick disk (see the figure), followed by a lull during which only lower-mass satellite galaxies were accreted. The Milky Way is now acquiring the Sagittarius dwarf galaxy, which is likely sculpting the galaxy’s thin disk….

…The first data release (DR1) from Gaia provided the position on the sky and apparent brightness for over a billion stars. One result stands out from Gaia DR1: the discovery by Belokurov et al. (3) of a population of stars with distinctive motions, which were identified as debris from a massive satellite that merged into the Galaxy a long time ago. These stars are moving on unexpectedly radially biased orbits and they dominate the stellar halo, particularly close to the peak of its chemical abundance distribution. 

(18) MEET YOUR WATERLOO. James Davis Nicoll wants you to know about “SFF Works Linked by One Canadian University”.

You might not immediately identify Ontario’s University of Waterloo as a hotbed of speculative fiction writing. The establishment is far better known for its STEM programs, baffled-looking first-year students, the horrifying things in the tunnels, and vast flocks of velociraptor-like geese. So you may be surprised to learn that the University has produced a number of science fiction and fantasy authors over the years

[Thanks to JJ, John King Tarpinian, Eric Wong, Hampus Eckerman, Chip Hitchcock, SF Cocatenation’s Jonathan Cowie, Michael Toman, Mike Kennedy, Martin Morse Wooster, Olav Rokne, Andrew Porter, and Cat Eldridge for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Daniel Dern.]

48 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 9/6/19 The Soylent Green Hills of Earth

  1. 10) I’ll do my obsessive pedant bit by noting that Idris Elba appeared in Ultraviolet (the six-episode series about modern vampire hunters) in 1998, and Naomie Harris was in, of all things, The Tomorrow People‘s 1990s remake – a series regular from 1994. (I’m always amazed by how many acting careers have survived an appearance in The Tomorrow People. I suppose if you can cope with those scripts, you can cope with anything.)

  2. 16) :SIGH:
    7) Thanks for the link. I do hope I can get some good bids and raise some money from DUFF with my print thereby. The 2020 DUFF race is coming soon, so I’d like to get more money in the tank, as it were!

  3. After some research, it seems that the Steven Universe movie is only streaming from Hulu’s Live TV option (for $44 or $50 a month, yay). You can perma-rent (aka “buy”) the movie from ITunes for $14.99 but you can’t rent it from them until Sept. 17. [shrug]

  4. Steve Wright says I’ll do my obsessive pedant bit by noting that Idris Elba appeared in Ultraviolet (the six-episode series about modern vampire hunters) in 1998, and Naomie Harris was in, of all things, The Tomorrow People‘s 1990s remake – a series regular from 1994. (I’m always amazed by how many acting careers have survived an appearance in The Tomorrow People. I suppose if you can cope with those scripts, you can cope with anything.)

    You do know that CW, home of the Arrowverse for lack of a better term, produced another version of the Tomorrow People? It lasted but one season. Harris btw at least avoided getting involved in the Big Finish Tomorrow People audiobooks.

    I don’t list everything a performer has been involved in, just what I’m interested in.

  5. Cat Eldridge: I don’t list everything a performer has been involved in, just what I’m interested in.

    I get that. It sets up a good dynamic if someone finds it irresistible to add a comment about some other credit, if they do it without complaining, and I thought Steve did it in the right spirit.

  6. Mike says I get that. It sets up a good dynamic if someone finds it irresistible to add a comment about some other credit, if they do it without complaining, and I thought Steve did it in the right spirit.

    He did. I was just explaining why I had not listed those series.

  7. This may be of interest to filers a news story about a hearing for Vic Mignogna and his cases against several people in the anime industry and Funimation.

    https://www.dallasnews.com/opinion/commentary/2019/09/06/in-animes-metoo-moment-vic-mignogna-a-no-show-at-tarrant-county-hearing-and-his-case-is-mostly-an-unholy-mess/

    A live tweet stream
    https://twitter.com/LizaGaines/lists/threadnought-hearing

    Twitter thread from an attendees notes
    https://twitter.com/LawoftheGame/status/1170054130724945920/photo/1

    Long and short: Vic’s attorney scored his own goal repeatedly.

  8. (10) Roger Waters wrote a song for The Last Mimzy an adaptation of the C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner story “Mimsy Were the Borogoves”. The song was called “Hello (I Love You)”.

  9. Juan Sanmiguel says to my amazement that Roger Waters wrote a song for The Last Mimzy an adaptation of the C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner story “Mimsy Were the Borogoves”. The song was called “Hello (I Love You)”.

    Thank you!

  10. @10: some of the authors in Conklin anthologies may have been obscure even in their own time — but in my recollection many of the stories from them were good. He wasn’t nearly as edgy as Merril, but he did have taste, unlike (e.g.) Greenberg.

    @10bis: I remember being blown away by Perdido Street Station (although less so by the two successors). I’ll have to reread it some time to see how it feels; ISTM that the idea “ab, lbh pna’g whfg ohl lbhe jnl bhg bs gur creznarag cranygl sbe encr — lbh’ir tbg gb yvir jvgu gur erfhyg, whfg yvxr lbhe ivpgvz” still has currency. (rot13 for some combination of spoiler and trigger warning)

    re Mignogna: one wonders where he got his attorney — maybe a graduate of Rufus T. Firefly U?

  11. Shouldn’t that be Scrollent Green?

    And,

    “Two thousand million or so years ago two pixels were scrolling.”

  12. 16) John W. Campbell … Diversity? The cognitive dissonance is strong with this one.

    10) In the Star Trek:TNG finale, “All Good Things …” I think Nurse Ogawa had become a doctor in the “future” that presumably now doesn’t happen (along with Picard’s marriage and divorce from Dr. Crusher, etc.)

    12) This makes sense. The bulk of the scuttled German High Seas Fleet (45 of 52 vessels) had already been raised and salvaged by the beginning of WW2, however. What remains is a popular recreational dive site. Three British ships elsewhere in Scapa Flow — Royal Oak, Vanguard, and Hampshire — are war grave wrecks, off limits to all but military divers.

  13. Cat Rambo: There are a bunch of different categories within the Helicon Awards, and then these others are tacked on. He tries to present them as related to that SFWA-substitute he attempted to found.

  14. (17) “This week’s Science (the US version of Nature)”: I wouldn’t want anyone to get the wrong idea from this phrasing. One is not a version of the other: They’re competitors for the most interesting new research papers (although rarely they do cooperate, such as when the human genome was completed in February 2001 and required the coordinated publication of both weeklies to publish all the relevant papers). Also, Nature is a branch of the for-profit publisher Springer, whereas Science is a membership benefit of AAAS, although it’s also available in libraries, etc.

    Disclosure: I’m a longtime editorial employee of Science.

  15. 10) I have an easy time forgetting Elba was in Beyond, what with being under so much latex I couldn’t recognize him, and having his voice so distorted I could not comprehend a single one of his lines, much less tell that he was speaking them.

    10bis) Downes also did the voice of the bull goose vampire in The Strain, possibly the show that went downhill more from first season to last than any other I’ve seen.

  16. 15) Nostalgia is only silly for those who weren’t part of what others are nostalgic about.

  17. 2). so I’m guessing that RSR will now be everyone’s first choice for Best Related Hugo Award over at AO3 this coming year.

    AO3 peeps let all of your members know who to vote for!

    I’ll now have to switch the category I’ve nominated them in the past two years….

  18. (12) The Caves of (Old and Sunken) Steel
    …shielded from The Naked Sun (of Nuclear Detonations). If i remember correctly, Carbon-14 dating of anything organic from the past 75 years, and on into the future, will also be skewed by the fallout of the Atomic Age.

  19. Mark W. Richards notes In the Star Trek:TNG finale, “All Good Things …” I think Nurse Ogawa had become a doctor in the “future” that presumably now doesn’t happen (along with Picard’s marriage and divorce from Dr. Crusher, etc.)

    Ahhh that makes sense. Fandom would’ve have retconned it as actually happening even though it didn’t.

    Another weirdness of Trek is her being simply a Nurse. In the Real World™, we have such nursing ranks as Nurse Practitioners and Registered Nurses, but Trek simply has Nurses. Very Fifties of them I’d say.

  20. (12) The same issues exist with lead. Modern lead is always contaminated with Pb-210, which is lightly radioactive, and thus unsuitable for shielding for certain particle-physics experiments. Lead ingots from ancient shipwrecks is valuable for that use, but archaeologists and people sensitive to cultural heritage say it shouldn’t be “used up” for those purposes.

  21. @Cat
    Trek fanfic frequently has them becoming Doctors of Nursing, meaning that they have a PhD in the field – going up, rather than out.

  22. Meredith Moment:
    “The Science Fiction Hall of Fame, Volume One 1929-1964” is on sale for $2.99 at the usual suspects. Yes, this is the one edited by Silverberg.

  23. P J Evans says
    Trek fanfic frequently has them becoming Doctors of Nursing, meaning that they have a PhD in the field – going up, rather than out.

    Interesting but that doesn’t really solve the question of why Trek itself is so sloppy when it comes to medical personnel terminology.

  24. 15a: I think I’ve seen a few too many ‘modern day attempt at Heinlein juvies’ to agree that this genre doesn’t have a wide streak of nostalgia in it.

  25. 10) I enjoyed the New Crobuzon books. My favorite was The Scar; I loved the idea of a city made of all different kinds of ships lashed together. I’ve heard good things about The Last Days of New Paris but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet.

  26. @P J Evans: is that the pre-Nebula short stories? If it’s the volume I’m thinking of, the date didn’t used to be in the title as volumes 2A and 2B were the pre-Nebula novellas — but I see they carried the same title for two volumes containing several years’ worth of early Nebula winners, so there’s confusion compounded.

  27. 16) John W. Campbell … Diversity? The cognitive dissonance is strong with this one.

    Im calling it now: It will be an award to a white male author and he will say, its diversity, because right now “Only women and POC or women POC gets recognition” or something..And then he will laugh ominously and pat his own shoulder for the rest of the day because he is so “clever”…

    @Nina: New Paris is wild. It has some great lines and the whole concept is bonkers (imho in a good way, but YMMV). I remember it fondly. But I have to say, its a bit short, so the story is very linear.

    Big Gelflings in little Thra

  28. I still think that the first two books of the New Crobuzon series are excellent novels. There’s a richness and complexity of world building that allows for multiple readings. The third novel never really matched the strengths of the first two, though.

  29. Jon Meltzer: “Two thousand million or so years ago two pixels were scrolling.”

    Now you’re talking!

  30. The BBC reports on @5: Brazil mayor blocked from banning Avengers comic over gay kiss:

    A Brazilian judge has blocked attempts by the mayor of Rio de Janeiro to ban a Marvel comic showing two men kissing.

    Mayor Marcelo Crivella, a former bishop, had demanded the comic be withdrawn from a book fair, saying it included content unsuitable for minors.

    But the judge granted an interim injunction against this, citing the right to freedom of expression.

    Copies of the comic book, Avengers: The Children’s Crusade, quickly sold out after the mayor’s intervention.

    The illustration that upset that mayor was also printed on the front page of Brazilian newspaper Folha de São Paulo on Saturday.

    (This doesn’t come from my usual daily plod through categories; it was on the 10 most-read stories.)

  31. Chip Hitchcock: Brazil mayor blocked from banning Avengers comic over gay kiss… The illustration that upset that mayor was also printed on the front page of Brazilian newspaper Folha de São Paulo on Saturday.

    I’m guessing that Mayor Crivella has never heard of the Streisand effect. At least not until now. 😀

  32. The Division Bell is not part of Roger Waters’ career; he had left Pink Floyd several years before, and he did not perform on that album.

  33. Pink Floyd’s first hit was “Interstellar Overdrive”. Their second album was A Saucerful of Secrets, which included the song “Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun” (a Waters composition). Their obscure ’68 single, “Point Me at the Sky”, co-written by Waters, was all about using rockets to escape an insanely overcrowded future Earth. I have no problem calling them at least genre-adjacent.

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