Pixel Scroll 9/6/22 All Of The Riverworld Ramblers Are Losing Their Grails

(1) A LITTLE SMACK. Deadline takes notes as “Neil Gaiman Slaps Back At Elon Musk For Criticizing ‘LOTR: The Rings Of Power’”.

…Gaiman’s comment came after Musk slammed Amazon’s LOTR: The Rings Of Power, saying “Tolkien is turning over his grave,” as Musk is attempting to exit his proposed $44BN takeover of Twitter and amid an ongoing feud with Amazon founder and executive chairman Jeff Bezos.

(2) DANISH AUTHOR IN NY. The Community Bookstore in Brooklyn, NY will host “Olga Ravn presents ‘The Employees’” on Friday, September 30 at 6:00 p.m. Eastern. Tickets for sale at the link.

Shortlisted for the International Booker prize, and the Ursula K. Le Guin Prize, The Employees reshuffles a sci-fi voyage into a riotously original existential nightmare.

Olga Ravn’s prose is chilling, crackling, exhilarating, and foreboding. The Employees probes into what makes us human, while delivering a hilariously stinging critique of life governed by the logic of productivity.

(3) FREE READ. Sunday Morning Transport offers a free story: “About what you keep, what you mend, and what you throw away,” by Elizabeth Bear: “The Part You Throw Away”.

(4) SOURCES OF TERROR. Meg Elison promotes her new novel Number One Fan on CrimeReads.“Why Are Stories of Captivity and Abduction So Extraordinarily Terrifying?”

…Part of the reason for the power of captivity is something called the “castle doctrine.” This is an underpinning of law, dating back to the English document known as the Magna Carta. This concept and subsequent iterations of law made the home a sacrosanct place, providing the bedrock from which we derive our rights to deny search and seizure without a warrant, to remove anyone we wish from our homes, and to defend ourselves at home using force, including deadly force. This concept and the laws formed around it make any domicile, even a van or a bus a person might live in, a legally protected place that no one may enter or inspect without cause and (usually) a judicial order. As much as this is a crucial piece of our right to privacy (but not in your own womb! ha!) it also shrouds and protects perpetrators of home-based violence: domestic and child abuse, incest, and this kind of home-grown captivity….

(5) BRITISH ACADEMY BOOK PRIZE. The shortlist for the British Academy Book Prize for Global Cultural Understanding 2022 is comprised of six books. The international book prize, worth £25,000, rewards and celebrates the best works of non-fiction that have contributed to public understanding of world cultures and their interaction.

  • The Invention of Miracles: Language, Power, and Alexander Graham Bell’s Quest to End Deafness by Katie Booth (Scribe UK)
  • Aftermath: Life in the Fallout of the Third Reich by Harald Jähner (WH Allen/Ebury Publishing)
  • Osebol: Voices from a Swedish Village by Marit Kapla (Allen Lane)
  • Horizons: A Global History of Science by James Poskett (Viking)
  • When Women Kill: Four Crimes Retold by Alia Trabucco Zerán (And Other Stories)
  • Kingdom of Characters: A Tale of Language, Obsession, and Genius in Modern China by Jing Tsu (Allen Lane)

(6) WORLDCON CHAIRS PHOTO SESSION. Recorded at Chicon 8.

(7) PETER STRAUB (1943-2022). Author Peter Straub died September 4 at the age of 79. The New York Times obituary is here. The Guardian notes that Straub’s many novels ranged from his debut horror novel Julia in 1975 – later filmed as The Haunting of Julia – to the 2010 novel A Dark Matter and The Talisman, which he co-wrote with Stephen King.

He told Salon in 2016, “I like the worst characters, I like the villain. You can almost always tell there’s a lot of imaginative sympathy for them on my part. Once I start thinking about how they got that way I feel empathy and compassion. I don’t want to kill them off.” 

Straub won four World Fantasy Awards and ten Bram Stoker Awards. He received World Fantasy and Bram Stoker Life Achievement awards, was named an International Horror Guilds Living Legend, and a World Horror Grandmaster.

(8) MEMORY LANE.  

1999 [By Cat Eldridge.]  Speaking of most stellar novels, there’s the matter of Neil Gaiman’s Stardust. There are two novels that I think Gaiman did really well, this and Neverwhere. This is his best novel and I’ll say why now. (Me? Opinionated? Why yes!) 

SPOILERS ABOUND LIKE SPRITES IN THE MOONLIGHT

Stardust was written twenty-three years ago, starting off with the story set in late April 1839, as John William Draper had just photographed the Moon and Charles Dickens was serializing Oliver Twist, but almost all of the book takes place seventeen years later, starting around October 1856.

The novel set in the village of Wall. Once every nine years an opening to Fairy occurs on All Hallows’ Eve. Naturally a young man will fall in love with what he thinks is a young woman. Who isn’t. Really she isn’t. Trust me on this plot point. 

We have really evil witch-queens, near immortal rulers of vast castles delightfully named Stormhold, quests to the end of the world or nearly so. All deliciously told by Gaiman as though it was a fairy tale. There’s even unicorns. And pirates! 

Yes, and true love won out in the end as it should. 

END OF SPOILERS. NO MORE SPOILERS FOR NOW. MAYBE.

The best edition of this book is the one illustrated by Charles Vess that should’ve won a Hugo but didn’t. Nor did Stardust itself. The film did win one most deservingly at Denvention 3.  Oh and Neil himself narrates the audio version! 

I’ve read both the unadorned text version and the version with Vess artwork, or listened to it, at least a half dozen times now, and it always delights me every time that I do. No, I’ve not seen the film, nor will I ever see it following my long standing policy of never seeing any video version of books that I really, really like. 

(9) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born September 6, 1904 Groff Conklin. He edited some forty anthologies of genre fiction starting with 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 a mix of the obscure and well known as Heinlein, Niven, Simak, Dahl, Sturgeon, Lovecraft and Bradbury show up there. (Died 1968.)
  • Born September 6, 1943 Roger Waters, 79. Ok Pink Floyd is definitely genre and I’m no longer doing any substances that aid in my judgement thereof. The Wall of course. And The Division Bell with its themes of communication. And 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, 69. 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, 1972 China Miéville, 50. 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. His Hugo history is a one long one. His first nomination at ConJosé for Perdido Street Station was followed by The Scar at Torcon 3. He picked up another nomination at interaction for Iron Council, and his only win at Aussiecon 4 for The City & The City which was shared Paolo Bacigalupi’s The Windup Girl. He has two more nominations to date, Embassytown at Chicon 7 and “This Census-Taker” novella at Worldcon 75. 
  • Born September 6, 1958 Michael Winslow, 64. Though he might bear notice as the comically voiced Radar Technician in 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 Idris Elba, 50. 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, 46. 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, 46. She’s Eve Moneypenny in SkyfallSpectre and  No Time to Die. This was the first time Moneypenny had a first name.  No word if she’ll be in Bullets for Winter, the next Bond film which has been announced.  She also appeared in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End as Tia Dalma. In the Marvel Universe, she was Frances Barrison / Shriek in the Spider-Man centric Venom: Let There Be Carnage. And lastly I’ll note she played Elizabeth Lavenza in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein at the National Theatre.

(10) COMICS SECTION.

(11) THE WINNER GETS A T-SHIRT. Joe Stech will begin giving the Compelling Science Fiction Appreciation Award every month. See what it takes to win.

Ever since Compelling Science Fiction stopped publishing short stories I’ve been looking for ways to engage with the science fiction community that don’t involve me reading a submission queue of 500 stories/month. I’m still thinking about different approaches, but in the meantime I’m announcing a fun project: every month I’m going to send a t-shirt to the author that writes the short story that scores the highest on the set of axes that best represent Compelling Science Fiction (plausibility/novelty/entertainment).

(12) COMPELLING SCIENCE FICTION T-SHIRT DESIGN POLL. Joe Stech is also going to print up some more of the original Compelling Science Fiction shirts, but also wants to create a new design.

Below are eight different astronaut designs that I think reflect Compelling Science Fiction’s lack of taking itself too seriously, and I’d love it if you’d tell me your favorite. Please ask your friends too, if your friends have good taste! Here’s the poll.

(13) A TRUCE WITH BEAVERS. [Item by Daniel Dern.] My favorite informative fact from the article: “They’re wild, swimming rodents the size of basset hounds.” “It Was War. Then, a Rancher’s Truce With Some Pesky Beavers Paid Off.”

Horace Smith blew up a lot of beaver dams in his life.

A rancher here in northeastern Nevada, he waged war against the animals, frequently with dynamite. Not from meanness or cruelty; it was a struggle over water. Mr. Smith blamed beavers for flooding some parts of his property, Cottonwood Ranch, and drying out others.

But his son Agee, who eventually took over the ranch, is making peace. And he says welcoming beavers to work on the land is one of the best things he’s done.

“They’re very controversial still,” said Mr. Smith, whose father died in 2014. “But it’s getting better. People are starting to wake up.”

As global warming intensifies droughts, floods and wildfires, Mr. Smith has become one of a growing number of ranchers, scientists and other “beaver believers” who see the creatures not only as helpers, but as furry weapons of climate resilience.

Last year, when Nevada suffered one of the worst droughts on record, beaver pools kept his cattle with enough water. When rains came strangely hard and fast, the vast network of dams slowed a torrent of water raging down the mountain, protecting his hay crop. And with the beavers’ help, creeks have widened into wetlands that run through the sagebrush desert, cleaning water, birthing new meadows and creating a buffer against wildfires.

…“We need to get beavers back to work,” Wade Crowfoot, California’s secretary of natural resources, said in a webinar this year. “Full employment for beavers.” (Beaver believers like to note that the animals work for free.)…

(4) VERY CAREFULLY. “Once they had breathed our air, germs which no longer affect us began to kill them. The end came swiftly. All over the world, their machines began to stop and fall.” You know where that line comes from. And we don’t want to be on the receiving end. “To Prevent a Martian Plague, NASA Needs to Build a Very Special Lab” reports the New York Times.  

…“It is possible that on Mars there are pathogens,” [Carl Sagan] wrote, “organisms which, if transported to the terrestrial environment, might do enormous biological damage — a Martian plague.”

Michael Crichton imagined a related scenario in his novel “The Andromeda Strain.”

Such situations, in which extraterrestrial samples contain dangerous tagalong organisms, are examples of backward contamination, or the risk of material from other worlds harming Earth’s biosphere.

“The likelihood that such pathogens exist is probably small,” Sagan wrote, “but we cannot take even a small risk with a billion lives.”

Scientists have long considered Sagan’s warnings in mostly hypothetical terms. But over the approaching decade, they will start to act concretely on backward contamination risks. NASA and the European Space Agency are gearing up for a shared mission called Mars Sample Return. A rover on the red planet is currently scooping up material that will be collected by other spacecraft and eventually returned to Earth.

No one can say for sure that such material will not contain tiny Martians. If it does, no one can yet say for sure they are not harmful to Earthlings.

With such concerns in mind, NASA must act as if samples from Mars could spawn the next pandemic. “Because it is not a zero-percent chance, we are doing our due diligence to make sure that there’s no possibility of contamination,” said Andrea Harrington, the Mars sample curator for NASA. Thus, the agency plans to handle the returned samples similarly to how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention handles ebola: carefully….

(15) WHAT’S BREWING? Make explains how “This Elven Architecture Diorama Makes A Perfect Cup Of Tea”. It’s a sort of steampunk encounter with Rivendell.

…There are multiple options available, for different blends of tea and temperatures for steeping. With a quick press of a button, this elven village hops to life measuring out tea leaves, depositing them into the tea ball, heating water and dispensing it into the cup, then dunking the tea ball for the prescribed amount of time, then depositing it on a tiny coaster for disposal. 

At the end of the process, Samuel is left with a perfect cup of tea, and a view that is absolutely wonderful.

[Thanks to Chris Barkley, Michael Toman, Cat Eldridge, Daniel Dern, Kevin Standlee, Mike Kennedy, Martin Morse Wooster, JJ, John King Tarpinian, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Daniel Dern.]

44 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 9/6/22 All Of The Riverworld Ramblers Are Losing Their Grails

  1. That tea machine looks as though it would fit comfortably into the milieu of Katherine Addison’s Elflands. Something to amuse the Emperor and his court.

  2. Hal Haag: What is there to say that hasn’t been said? 16 years later his loss still hurts.

    I shared driving duties with Hal to Magicon in 1992 and then to Conadian in 1994. In 1994 we were both a part of the Baltimore in ’98 Worldcon Bid.

    How did we drive to Winnipeg? We drove west from Baltimore and made a right at Des Moins.

    Like all members of Baltimore in ’98 we each carried a 1.5 ltr bottle of Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum. (It was considerably cheaper in Maryland than in Canada) At the Border crossing from North Dakota into Canada we went thru Canadian Border Control. The very nice and polite Border Guards looked at our MD Driver’s Licenseses and asked a couple of pro-forma questions about our destination, reason for visiting ect.

    Then they asked if we were bringing any alcohol with us. We both answered yes, they asked how much and what kind of alcohol. We both answered that we each had 1 1.5 bottle of Capt Morgan’s Spiced Run each. Without missing a beat or batting an eye the Guard said “Oh you must be going to that Sci-Fi convention in Winnipeg” I answered yes as Hal dissolved into laughter.

  3. OK. I came back from Chicon and have this question: did they have any sort of daily newsletter? I’ve heard conflicting versions about this.

  4. Roger Waters should not be credited for The Division Bell, given that he had left Pink Floyd a decade before that album was recorded, and didn’t write any songs or perform any music on that album.

  5. (2) Olga Ravn’s The Employees is weird and terrific.
    (7) I really liked The Talisman, but of his novels I’ve read I’d rank Straub’s Ghost Story and Shadowland as his best.
    (9) I’d rate his superb Embassytown as my favorite Miéville.

  6. I’m guessing that today’s title is derived from a song by Michael Smith, and the song’s title is the name of a tributary of the Illinois River.

  7. Martin Wooster: OK. I came back from Chicon and have this question: did they have any sort of daily newsletter? I’ve heard conflicting versions about this.

    They had a modest news blog that was built into the Chicon 8 website. Rex Allen Hughes did a good job with it — a great set of masquerade photos, for one thing. I helped with a couple of items.

  8. (8) Stardust. This is one of my favorites of Neil’s works also. I enjoyed the movie, though I wish it had been more faithful — my recollection is that nearly everywhere that it departed from the source, it went in the direction of “less interesting”.

    I remember hearing Neil talk about its history. He and Charles Vess tried to get various publishers to put it out, and all of them foundered on the numerous illustrations. Then Vertigo Comics got in touch with him, saying “We know how to do things with lots of pictures.” Which, fair point. But this was back when the world of comics was still just barely emerging from the model of “disposable entertainment made for hire”; and so one of the stipulations that Neil and Charles Vess wanted was that they should be credited in all advertising. Vertigo balked at that, for reasons which (per Neil) boiled down to, “We might forget.” So they said, “How about if we make the title Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess’ Stardust?” And so it happened.

    There is a point in the story where one of the baddies commits arson on a wooden hut. In the original Vertigo text, he uses brandy as an accelerant. I wrote to Neil pointing out that ethyl alcohol doesn’t burn hot enough to ignite wood, so that for this purpose brandy would be worse than useless. He wrote back noting he’d had an experience trying to light a brandied Christmas pudding which inclined him to agree, and asked if I could suggest an alternative, one not a petroleum derivative. Alas, I had nothing for him at the time, and in the revised text he simply uses twigs and dead leaves. Some years later I happened across the fact that linseed oil is a fire hazard, with oil-soaked rags even known to spontaneously combust. I wish I’d known of that! It would have fit the story perfectly.

  9. David Goldfarb on September 6, 2022 at 11:19 pm said:

    (8) Stardust. This is one of my favorites of Neil’s works also.

    Oh yes indeed. I bought it in its “comic” form at the time.

  10. So this is the first Worldcon in modern memory without a printed newsletter? We are living in interesting times indeed… 🙁

  11. I got a note from a publicist offering an interview with a “Peter Straub” expert who is apparently pushing the “fact” that Straub is the

    “…Straub – and not Stephen King — the rightful heir to the great American tradition of ghost stories established by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry James and H.P. Lovecraft….”

    (note, no mention of Poe). I’m certainly not a big King fan (have read some by both authors) but the day of the guy’s passing is not, I think, an appropriate time frame to be pushing one’s book of critique.

  12. 14: Someone needs to do a short animation: opens with people panicking all over the world about the “Martian Invasion”. This leads to the scientists in the lab discussing how to save Earth scene, where one of the scientists wants to get “a better look at the Martians”, and does so by peering into a microscope. When we see what he sees, it is a miniaturized scene from the George Pal film…

  13. The movie version of Ghost Story is highly underrated and very scary.
    Idris Elba also starred in the adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower but perhaps it’s best left forgotten.

  14. “The likelihood that such pathogens exist is probably small,” Sagan wrote, “but we cannot take even a small risk with a billion lives.”

    As the last mask-wearer in the state of Florida, I think Sagan severely underestimated our ability to take risks with a pathogen.

  15. rcade on September 7, 2022 at 6:43 am said:
    As the last mask-wearer in the state of Florida…

    I thought I was.

  16. (7) The loss of Peter Straub is huge, and not just because of his writing. So many heartfelt accolades have been posted by both other writers and his fans.

    I watched “Ghost Story” when it first came out, but because I had just read the book, I didn’t like it as much as all that. I know I would enjoy it more now.

  17. @Anne, yes, that song was my inspiration.
    Here’s what I included to OGH with the suggestion submission:

    {the title suggestion itself…}
    (Cf “Spoon River” song by Mike Smith (here sung by Steve Goodman), based on (or from?) Edgar Lee Masters’ free verse poetry book of that title

    I suppose this also leads to, or I coulda suggested:
    Spock River …

  18. The SFWA Membership Requirements are a lot simpler than they used to be.

    If I understand them, earning $1,000 in science fiction, fantasy and related genres qualifies for full membership and earning $100 qualifies for associate membership. Both levels have Nebula nominating and voting rights.

    But the new requirements say nothing about what types of paid work in science fiction, fantasy and related genres count towards those dollar amounts.

  19. The one limitation on “type” is that non-fiction about SF/Fantasy/Horror, etc. is excluded (if I recall correctly).

  20. On the subject of Dr. Ogawa, not really, but …. In the TNG episode where Riker is abducted and fed mental images of a future as a substitution for interrogation, she’s a doctor ten years into their future. No sign that that happened anywhere else, though.

  21. So this is the first Worldcon in modern memory without a printed newsletter?

    Yes, no printed newsletter or printed program guide. There was a grid printout available at Information that showed the names of the program items (in fairly small type)–but unless you had a smart phone, you were out of luck in finding out what the topic was of those program items. Not a good move towards increasing inclusivity.

    The online “newsletter” (a blog, really) had maybe 1/10th of the information you would find in a normal newsletter.

  22. Did ConZealand have a printed newsletter? I certainly wouldn’t have expected them too, though I admit I never looked into it.

  23. @Ben Harris: Peevish? Maybe if it hadn’t been an answer to a direct question, but as it is, it strikes me as fairly diplomatic.

    Q. What do you think about {potentially controversial topic X}?
    A. I don’t.

  24. (8) Stardust. Thanks for the writeup. I first saw the comic book Vertigo version, and I just loved it. I still do. I liked the movie, although not as good. Not to be harsh, but people who don’t like Stardust are just plain wrong.

  25. David Hook says Stardust. Thanks for the writeup. I first saw the comic book Vertigo version, and I just loved it. I still do. I liked the movie, although not as good. Not to be harsh, but people who don’t like Stardust are just plain wrong.

    Thanks for the kind words. With the exception of the film (and it’s not personal as I’ve explained many times as regard other works), I equally like the plain text story, the version with Vess and the the audiobook narrated by Neil. As I said in my write-up, I think it’s his best novel by far.

  26. Xtifr said: “Did ConZealand have a printed newsletter? I certainly wouldn’t have expected them too, though I admit I never looked into it.”

    ConZealand’s newsletter, “Cruise Log” was online only. IIRC the only official in-person event was the Business Meeting, which was AFAIK the shortest WSFS Business Meeting ever.

  27. Soon Lee says ConZealand’s newsletter, “Cruise Log” was online only. IIRC the only official in-person event was the Business Meeting, which was AFAIK the shortest WSFS Business Meeting ever.

    So how did the shortest WSFS Business Meeting ever go?

  28. you aren’t the only last mask wearer in WannabeNazisLand (Florida).

    I’m up near west palm – you anywhere close by?

    I’m in St. Augustine. Do you ever go to MegaCon or any of the other cons here with SF programming?

  29. @rcade and @Steve Davidson: I’m in North Miami. I’ve gone to Necronomicon and Oasis in the past.

  30. My personal opinion is that the Stardust movie is an excellent fantasy movie worth watching, but also sufficiently different from the book that anyone seeing it who wished for a faithful adaptation would likely be saddened deeply, and too distracted by noticing all the really powerful bits removed to enjoy some of the replacements. (Sort of where I stand with the movie of Howl’s Moving Castle, for that matter). It has less the tone of making a movie of Gaiman’s story (The way the Sandman adaptation is so far) and more of the tone of two storytellers approaching the same older folk tale and drawing out rather different things from it.

    It suffers from fictional time compression in exactly the way I tend to note happens with fiction (if a thing in the real world would take 5 years or even 15, then in a book it takes 5 months, and in a movie it takes one week) and it loses some of the more subtle dire fates of the book in favour of spectacular demise (Though it does so while still allowing for a hero who can’t/won’t directly kill anyone). It’s not stupid — as movies go it’s got some thought to it — but it’s also shallower than the book.

    In short, I really like it, but I also very much understand why Cat is making the choice he is making to not watch it.

  31. The Chicon 8 con newsletter editions can be read here:
    https://chicon.org/star-chart/

    Note the “Load more posts” button at the bottom, which has to be pressed several times to load all newsletters. I recommend right-clicking on the post Title or on “Continue reading” and selecting “Open in new tab”; otherwise, when you click the “Back” button, you have to go through the “Load more posts” rigamarole over and over again.

  32. (1) Musk needs to take a closer look at how Tolkien wrote some of those First Age elves. The very flower of elfdom.

  33. (3) I have very much enjoyed my free subscription to Sunday Morning Transport. The only reason I haven’t upgraded to a paid subscription is, I’m having difficulties so far just reading that one freebie story a month, and I know getting four of them would just mean they piled up unread in my inbox. Maybe soon. But! I had the joy at WorldCon (via the virtual track, so, via laptop and headphones over dinner in the hotel restaurant) of hearing Marie Brennan read her story to be published in an upcoming SMT issue.

  34. (13) (and well past the edit window of my previous, sorry) – Cooperating with beavers sounds very much like something that would fit well in the toolbox of the various watershed networks in Ruthanna Emrys’s hopeful cli-fi first-contact novel A Half-Built Garden.

    Mainly I’m just posting this to say GO READ IT, IT’S SO GOOD but also, Beavers!

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