(1) RUSHDIE HOSPITALIZED AFTER ATTACK. Salman Ruhdie was attacked and stabbed at least twice while speaking onstage this morning in upstate New York. He was airlifted to a hospital and taken to surgery. The CNN story says:
The suspect jumped onto the stage and stabbed Rushdie at least once in the neck and at least once in the abdomen, state police said. Staff and audience members rushed the suspect and put him on the ground before a state trooper took the attacked into custody, police said.
… Henry Reese, co-founder of the Pittsburgh nonprofit City of Asylum, who was scheduled to join Rushdie in discussion, was taken to a hospital and treated for a facial injury and released, state police said. The organization was founded to “provide sanctuary in Pittsburgh to writers exiled under threat of persecution,” according to the Chautauqua Institution’s website.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul told reporters Friday a state trooper “stood up and saved (Rushdie’s) life and protected him as well as the moderator who was attacked as well.
The story did not have an update about Rushdie’s condition.
Literary figures and public officials said that they were shocked by the news that the author Salman Rushdie had been stabbed in the neck on Friday morning while onstage to give a lecture at the Chautauqua Institute in western New York.
“We cannot immediately think of any comparable incident of a public violent attack on a writer during a literary event here in the United States,” said Suzanne Nossel, the chief executive officer of the nonprofit literary organization PEN America, who noted that the motivations for the attack and Mr. Rushdie’s current condition were unknown as of Friday late morning.
Mr. Rushdie is a former president of PEN America, which advocates for writers’ freedom of expression around the world.
She said in a statement that the organization’s members were “reeling from shock and horror.”
Here is Neil Gaiman’s response on Twitter.
(2) PINCH-HITTER. Congratulations to Abigail Nussbaum, who was invited to cover for the Guardian‘s regular SFF columnist, Lisa Tuttle. You can see her reviews here at the Guardian.
…I was a bit nervous about the experience—five books is a big commitment of time and energy, and readers of this blog know that I’m not accustomed to summing up my thoughts on anything in 200 words or less. But I ended up having a lot of fun, mainly because the books discussed were a varied bunch, several of which weren’t even on my radar before the column’s editor, Justine Jordan, suggested them.
The column discusses The Book Eaters by Sunyi Dean, a twist on the vampire story that has more than a little of The Handmaid’s Tale in its DNA. The Pallbearers Club by Paul Tremblay, a horror author whom I’ve been hearing good things about for years, so it was great to have an opportunity to sample his stuff. Extinction by Bradley Somer, part of the rising tide of climate fiction we’ve been seeing in recent years, but with a very interesting and original approach. The Women Could Fly by Megan Giddings, a story about witches that combines a magical realist tone with pressing social issues. And The Moonday Letters by Emmi Itäranta, a whirlwind tour of the solar system reminiscent of Kim Stanley Robinson’s 2312 but with a slant all its own. I’ll have more to say about that last book in the near future, but all five are worth a look….
(3) OVERDRAWN AT THE BLUE CHECKMARK. From one of my favorite authors, Robert Crais:
On Aug. 1, 2022, Illinois Governor JB Pritzker declared Monkeypox a public health emergency in the state of Illinois, in order to rapidly mobilize all available public health resources to prevent and treat Monkeypox and ensure smooth coordination at all levels of government….
Many years ago I spent some time learning to paint and sketch, and got halfway decent (to the point where I could at least convey a little bit of what was in my head, albeit clumsily). The amount of time it took me to draw something halfway decent was fairly incredible, and after I stopped drawing regularly my meager skillset deteriorated. I still remember how it felt to finish a sketch though, and generative art models like DALL-E 2 have helped me recapture that joy with a much smaller time investment….
The comic writer and artist Frank Miller is suing the widow and the estate of a comics magazine founder over two pieces of promotional art he created that she was trying to sell at auction. The art, which appeared on covers of David Anthony Kraft’s magazine Comics Interview in the 1980s, includes an early depiction of Batman and a female Robin — from the 1986 The Dark Knight Returns series — and is potentially a valuable collectible.
The lawsuit seeks the return of the Batman piece, which was used on the cover of Comics Interview No. 31 in 1986, as well as art depicting the title character of Miller’s 1983 Ronin series. He had sent both to Kraft for his use in the publication; the Ronin artwork was used as the cover of Comics Interview No. 2 in 1983. Miller contended in the court papers that he and Kraft agreed they were on loan, citing “custom and usage in the trade at the time,” and that he made repeated requests for their return….
(7) SEEKING FANHISTORIC PHOTOS. [Item by Mike Kennedy.] This year’s DeepSouthCon is working on a project to create a photo gallery of past winners of the Rebel and Phoenix Awards.
We are looking for contributions from anyone who may have such photos. Digital files are preferred, obviously. We’d rather not be responsible for receiving your one-of-a-kind print photo and getting it back to you in one piece. The mail and other delivery services are more than capable of ripping any given package to shreds.
The gold standard would be a photo of the person holding the award at time of presentation or shortly after. We’re also happy to take more contemporary photos taken months, days, years, or decades later. If no such photo is available, we’re also happy to take photos of the winners themselves, just the award, or one of each.
…Anyway, the finalists for the 2022 Dragon Awards were announced today and the ballot looks really good with only a single WTF? finalist (more on that later) and a lot of popular and well regarded works on the ballot. This confirms a trend that we’ve seen in the past three years, namely that the Dragon Awards are steadily moving towards the award for widely popular SFF works that they were initially conceived to be, as the voter base broadens and more people become aware of the award, nominate and vote for their favourites. It’s a far cry from the early years of the Dragon Awards, where the finalists were dominated by Sad and Rabid Puppies, avid self-promoters and Kindle Unlimited content mills with a few broadly popular books mixed in….
(9) MEMORY LANE.
2006 – [By Cat Eldridge.] “ONCE THERE WAS A CHILD WHOSE FACE WAS LIKE THE NEW MOON SHINING on cypress trees and the feathers of waterbirds. She was a strange child, full of secrets. She would sit alone in the great Palace Garden on winter nights, pressing her hands into the snow and watching it melt under her heat. She wore a crown of garlic greens and wisteria; she drank from the silver fountains studded with lapis; she ate cold pears under a canopy of pines on rainy afternoons.” — First words of The Orphan’s Tales: in the Night Garden
There are works that I fall in love from the first words. Catherine Valente’s The Orphan’s Tales: In the Night Garden is one of those works. Well actually it was from the cover art by Michael Kaluta that I fell in love.
I don’t remember if it came out before or after I had coffee with her in a coffeehouse in the east coast Portland where we both live. (I was married and living on the mainland. She was single and living on Peaks Island. I’m now single and still living on the mainland; she’s married and on Peaks as far I know with her first child. It was an interesting conversation.)
I do remember that she got an iMac that I was no longer using as a result of that meeting, one of the aquarium style ones. Blue I think. I’m sure you’ve read fiction that was written on it.
Now back to the books. It stunned me of the non-linear nature of them which was quire thrilling. Living in a palace garden, a young girl keeps telling stories to a inquisitive prince: impossible feats and unknown-to-him histories of peoples long gone which weave through each other again and again and again, meeting only in the telling of her stories. Inked on her tattooed eyelids, each of these tales is a intriguing piece in the puzzle of the girl’s own lost history.
I can’t call either a novel in the traditional sense as they really aren’t. They’re something much more complex. What they are is Valente’s take off the 1001 nights but keep in mind that the 1001 nights stories weren’t connected to each other and these are, and so it is a spectacular undertaking of that concept, weaving stories within stories within stories myriad times over. It takes careful paying attention to catch all the connections.
So what we have here is quite delightful and they are matched up very up by well by the artwork by Michael Kaluta. The cover art for both is by him so that gives you an ample idea of what he does on the inside though those are all black and white. There are hundreds of drawings within, each appropriate to the story you are reading. One of my favorite illustrations is in the prelude of a gaggle of geese. Simple but very cute.
They both won the Mythopoetic Award and the first an Otherwise Award.
I’ve spent many a Winter night reading these. They are wonderful and I really wish they’d been made into an audiobook as they’d be perfect that way. And they really, really do deserve for some specialty press like Subterranean to publish a hardcover edition of them, though I expect getting the rights to the illustrations from Random House could be difficult to say the least.
(10) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.
[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]
Born August 12, 1881 — Cecil B. DeMille. Yes, you think of him for such films as Cleopatra and The Ten Commandments, but he actually did some important work in our genre. When Worlds Collide and War of The Worlds were films which he executive produced. (Died 1959.)
Born August 12, 1894 — Dick Calkins. He’s best remembered for being the first artist to draw the Buck Rogers comic strip. He also wrote scripts for the Buck Rogers radio program. Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, The Complete Newspaper Dailies in eight volumes on Hermes Press collects these strips. They’re one hundred and fifty dollars a volume. (Died 1962.)
Born August 12, 1929 — John Bluthal. He was Von Neidel in The Mouse on the Moon which sounds silly and fun. He’s in Casino Royale as both a Casino Doorman and a MI5 Man. (Why pay the Union salaries?) He had roles in films best forgotten such as Digby, the Biggest Dog in the World. (Really. Don’t ask.) And he did play a blind beggar in The Return of the Pink Panther as well, and his last genre role was as Professor Pacoli in the beloved Fifth Element. Lest I forget, he voiced Commander Wilbur Zero, Jock Campbell and other characters in Fireball XL5. (Died 2018.)
Born August 12, 1931 — William Goldman. Writer of The Princess Bride which won a Hugo at Nolacon II and which he adapted for the film. He also wrote Magic, a deliciously chilling horror novel. He wrotethe original Stepford Wives script as well as Steven King’s King’s Hearts in Atlantis and Misery as well. He was hired to adapt “Flowers for Algernon” as a screenplay but the story goes that Cliff Robertson intensely disliked his screenplay and it was discarded for one by Stirling Silliphant that became Charly. (Died 2018.)
Born August 12, 1947 — John Nathan-Turner. He produced Doctor Who from 1980 until it was cancelled in 1989. He finished as the longest-serving Doctor Who producer. He cast Peter Davison, Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy as the Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Doctors. Other than Doctor Who, he had a single production credit, the K-9 and Company: A Girl’s Best Friend film which you can currently find on BritBox which definitely makes sense. He wrote two books, Doctor Who – The TARDIS Inside Out and Doctor Who: The Companions. He would die of a massive infection just a year before the announcement the show was being revived. The Universe often sucks. (Died 2002.)
Born August 12, 1960 — Brenda Cooper, 62. Best known for her YA Silver Ship series of which The Silver Ship and the Sea won an Endeavour Award, and her Edge of Dark novel won another such Award. She co-authored Building Harlequin’s Moon with Larry Niven, and a fair amount of short fiction with him. She has a lot of short fiction, much collected in Beyond the Waterfall Door: Stories of the High Hills and Cracking the Sky. She’s well-stocked at the usual suspects.
Born August 12, 1966 — Brian Evenson, 56. Ok, I consider him a horror writer (go ahead, disagree) and his Song for the Unraveling of the World collection did win a Shirley Jackson Award though it also won a World Fantasy Award as well. He received an International Horror Guild Award for his Wavering Knife collection. He even co-authored a novel with Rob Zombie, The Lords of Salem. Which definitely puts him on the horror side of things, doesn’t it?
Born August 12, 1992 — Cara Jocelyn Delevingne, 30. Her first genre role was as a mermaid in Pan. She then shows up in James Gunn’s rather excellent Suicide Squad as June Moone / Enchantress, and in the (oh god why did they make this) Valerian andin the City of a Thousand Planets as Laureline. She was also in Carnival Row as Vignette Stonemoss. It was a fantasy noir series on Amazon Prime which sounds like it has the potential to be interesting.
(11) LEARN FROM AN EXPERT. Here is Cat Rambo’s advice about using social media. Thread starts here.
General Mills is releasing four limited-edition Monster Cereals boxes as part of a new collaboration with pop artist KAWS.
Franken Berry, Count Chocula, Boo Berry and Frute Brute are back for this year’s seasonal release. Fans are particularly excited about the appearance of Frute Brute, which is available for the first time since 2013.
…Franken Berry and Count Chocula now bear the bone-shaped ears seen in many of KAWS’ works. They also have KAWS’ signature Xed-out eyes, as do Boo Berry and Frute Brute. The boxes have been reimagined following the same design as the original boxes, with an illustration of each character and a photo of the cereal in a bowl, all set on a blank white background….
Jennifer Heldmann, a planetary scien-tist at NASA’s Ames Research Centre… wants to send another rocket to probe lunar ice—but not on a one-way trip. She has her eye on Starship, a behemoth under development by private rocket company SpaceX that would be the largest flying object the world has ever seen. With Starship, Heldmann could send 100 tons to the Moon, more than twice the lunar payload of the Saturn V, the work-horse of the Apollo missions.
…This awesome fan-made concept trailer from Stryder HD imagines what a Fantastic Four movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe could be about, showcasing how Reed Richards, Sue Storm, Johnny Storm and Ben Grimm all become their heroic alter-egos….
(15) VIDEO OF THE DAY. [Item by Martin Morse Wooster.] In “The Book of Boba Fett Pitch Meeting,” Ryan George says in The Book of Boba Fett that Boba Fett is the worst crime boss in the galaxy. But the writer explains he got bored and wrote a couple of episodes of The Mandalorian instead. The producer gets excited when he hears Baby Yoda is in it, because Baby Yoda is “my little green money baby.” But then we go back to Baba Fett and how he fights someone who fans of The Clone Wars will recognize while everyone else will be confused. So the producer concludes, “at least we have some content.”
[Thanks to Chris Barkley, Michael Toman, Cat Eldridge, SF Concatenation’s Jonathan Cowie, 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.]
Winners of two traditional DeepSouthCon awards were announced July 10 at Congregate 7 / DeepSouthCon 59 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
The Phoenix Award is given to the professional (writer, editor or artist) who has done the most for Southern Fandom. This year’s honoree is author Allen Wold of North Carolina.
Wold has been a writer of speculative fiction since 1972 who has done many media tie-in books for Elfquest and V, plus eight other novels, and numerous short stories. He has hosted his Writers’ Workshop and Plotting Workshop at conventions in the Southeast since 1987.
The Rebel Award is awarded to the fan who has done the most for Southern Fandom. This year it went to Cheralyn Lambeth of Charlotte, North Carolina.
Lambeth is a professional costume, prop, and puppet builder. She is also a published author, with several nonfiction books out (Haunted Theaters of the Carolinas, The Well-Dressed Puppet, and Creating the Character Costume: Tools, Tips, and Talks with Top Costumers and Cosplayers), and recently released her first fiction book, ‘Twas Halloween Evening. She is a long-time charter member of the 501st Legion, serving on the Legion’s History/Archives team. See photos of her work on Instagram.
For you completists — no Rubble Award was given this year.
Thanks to newly-elected Southern Fandom Confederation President Randy Boyd Cleary for the information.
Winners of three traditional DeepSouthCon awards were announced November 21 during the virtual 2020 DSC/SFC CONference put on by the CONtraflow committee.
The Phoenix Award is given to the professional (writer, editor or artist) who has done the most for Southern Fandom. This year’s honoree is Les Johnson, physicist, author, and NASA technologist. His books include the 2018 novel, Mission to Methone, and the 2018 nonfiction book, co-authored with Joe Meany, Graphene: The Superstrong, Superthin, and Superversatile Material That Will Revolutionize the World. His latest anthology, Stellaris: People of the Stars, coedited with Robert Hampson, was published in 2019. He is a Principal Investigator of two interplanetary solar sail space missions for NASA.
The Rebel Award is awarded to the fan who has done the most for Southern Fandom. This year it went to a trio of winners: Raymond Boudreau, Jessica Styons, and Rebecca Smith
The facetious Rubble Award, given to the individual who has done the most TO Southern Fandom, went to COVID-19.
Winners of three traditional DeepSouthCon awards were announced in Bowling Green, KY on February 24 during Concave 39, host of DSC 56.
The Phoenix Award is given to the professional (writer, editor or artist) who has done the most for Southern fandom. This year’s honoree is Joseph Green. His son-in-law, Guy H. Lillian III, summed up Green’s career: “Author of 7 published SF novels and 2 volumes of short stories, host for Apollo launches during the moon landing days, [and] founder of Greenhouse Scribes.”
The Rebel Award is awarded to the fan who has done the most for southern fandom. The 2018 winner is Rick Norwood, who is also the con’s Fan Guest of Honor.
The winner of the facetious Rubble Award, given to the individual who has done the most TO the Southern Fandom, was worthy of the name — it went to the broken sidewalk responsible for Claude Mills’ (the con chair) broken leg.
Winners of several traditional DeepSouthCon awards plus the inaugural JordanCon Awards were announced in Atlanta on April 23 during JordanCon 8, host of DSC 54.
The Phoenix is given to the professional (writer, editor or artist) who has done the most for Southern fandom. This year there were two honorees, Eugie Foster (posthumously), and Jana Oliver. Both Atlanta authors have a considerable body of work and were/are noted supporters of local conventions.
The Rebel is awarded to the fan who has done the most for southern fandom. This year’s recipients were Bill Harrison, long time convention volunteer for multiple conventions in Atlanta, Tennessee and more, and Pat Henry, the retired Chair of DragonCon.
The winner of the Rubble, given to the individual who has done the most TO the Southern Fandom, was North Carolina’s governor, Pat McCrory.
The first annual JordanCon awards, called the Hero of the Horn awards, were given in three categories to the volunteers, professionals and organizations that have supported JordanCon.
This year, the Hero of the Horn was awarded to April Moore for her hard work as a volunteer, TarValon.net for its long-standing support as an organization, and Brandon Sanderson as a professional, who was cited for his dedication and support.
Three traditional Southern fan awards were presented at Contrails, DeepSouthCon 52, in Bristol, VA on May 17.
Rebel Award: Judy Bemis
Phoenix Award: Steve Jackson
Rubble Award: Gary Robe, for screwing up the SFPA ego boo poll
Congratulations to all — and a hat tip to Guy Lillian III for pointing out that this is the third time that Robe, founder of the satirical Rubble Award, has won his own creation….
[Via Warren Buff. Thanks to Judy Bemis for the story.]
Update 05/18/2014: Fixed the headline — from 51 to 52. How bizarre. I spent 10 minutes vetting the convention number on Google to end up with the right number in the text and by then forgot I had the wrong one in the headline. My proofing skills are never good at any time, but seem to disappear altogether as midnight approaches. Bet there is a fantasy novel in this. (One containing many typos.)
The Phoenix and Rebel, two traditonal Southern fandom awards, were presented at DeepSouthCon 51 in Atlanta, GA on April 20. The Phoenix is for pros and the Rebel is for fans.
Harriet McDougal accepted the Phoenix Award on behalf of her late husband, James Oliver Rigney, Jr. after all of his aliases were read off — the one everyone knows being Robert Jordan. The winner of the award was selected by the current year’s DSC committee. When you know DSC 51 was also JordanCon 5 the preference is easy to explain.
The Rebel Award was won by Regina Kirby and M. Lee Rogers.
Also presented was the facetious Rubble Award, which went to Pat Gibbs who often runs the DSC’s traditional Hearts competition. The Rubble is decided by previous winners who give it to someone who has done much to Southern fandom.
[Via Guy H. Lillian III and SF Site News.]
Update 04/23/2013: Corrected location of con to Atlanta.