(1) Today’s birthdays —
1547 – Miguel de Cervantes, author of that famous tome about the old windmill tilter
1942 – Madeline Kahn, a signature comedic actress of the 1970s, who appeared in Paper Moon, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, High Anxiety and many more films.
(2) The 30th anniversary of Back To The Future means a new chance to sell a Blu-ray release, and to help market it Christopher Lloyd is back in character as Doc Brown in an exclusive short video. Go to the link to watch a new trailer.
Lloyd has donned his lab coat and white wig once again to play the mad scientist in a brand new original short film ‘Doc Brown Saves The World!’ that’s being exclusively released in the ‘Back To The Future 30th Anniversary Trilogy’ box set on 5 October.
Little is known about the plot of the new short story, but we can see that the famous time-travelling DeLorean DMC-12 will feature heavily. The new box set will also gather the trilogy of time-travel comedies starring Michael J Fox. the entire ‘Back To The Future: The Animated Series’, plus hours of bonus content all together for the first time.
(3) Jamie Todd Rubin has already done the groundwork for one source of 1941 Retro Hugo nominees.
As he explains in “The Retro Hugo Awards for 1941 at MidAmeriCon II” —
Next summer at MidAmeriCon II–the 74th World Science Fiction Convention–among the awards given out will be the Retro Hugo awards for 1941. The award will cover stories published in 1940. I have a particular interest in this award because a few years ago, when I was taking my Vacation in the Golden Age, I read, and wrote about, every story that appeared in Astounding Science Fiction from July 1939 – November 1942. That means that I read and commented on every story that appeared in 1940 issue of Astounding.
Rubin lists his favorite stories from the 1940 issues of ASF:
- “Final Blackout” by L. Ron Hubbard1 (April, May, June 1940)
- “Requiem” by Robert A. Heinlein (January 1940)
- “Cold” by Nat Schachner (March 1940)
- “The Stars Look Down” by Lester Del Rey (August 1940)
- “The Mosaic” by J. B. Ryan (July 1940)
- “If This Goes On–” by Robert A. Heinlein (February 1940)
- “Butyl and the Breather” by Theodore Sturgeon (October 1940)
- “Fog” by Robert Willey2 (December 1940)
- “One Was Stubborn” by Rene La Fayette3 (November 1940)
(4) British Eastercon attendees are invited to help decide the con’s future by completing a questionnaire. (For more info about the process, read the FAQ.)
We’re hoping that a wide variety of people will be filling in this questionnaire, so we start by asking what you know about Eastercon, and why people go to Eastercons. Then what you think works or doesn’t work, and whether you have any suggestions for improvement. Then about issues, and some suggestions people have already made to deal with them. Finally, we’ll ask whether you would like us to keep in touch, and because no matter how hard we try we can’t capture everything, you have the opportunity for a final comment.The results will be published on our website, and discussed both at Novacon and at next year’s Eastercon. You do not have to provide any personal details unless you want to, and if you do your participation will be kept strictly confidential.
We hope this will take you no more than about 15 to 20 minutes to complete. Thank you in advance for your time and consideration.
To fill it out, visit: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1ndMn5Soj0FHE4Gkj-XjUbVgFM9w8Ma5PvgvND9g8WZE/viewform?c=0&w=1&usp=mail_form_link
(5) A new Rick Riordan series – my daughter has already announced she is waiting for the minutes to tick past so she can buy the Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer. Bibliofiend has an exclusive – read the first five chapter free. [PDF file]
(6) The 2015 MacArthur Genius Awards are out. Better check and see if your name is there.
(7) Europa SF reports the winners of the 16th Swedish Fantastic Short Story Contest. Article (and where needed, translation to English) by Ahrvid Engholm.
The Fantastic Short Story Competion (“Fantastiknovelltävlingen“, in Swedish) has been running yearly since the year 2000, and is dedicated to stories of science fiction, fantasy and horror. It is probably Sweden’s oldest at present; at least one short story contest that used to be older has folded.
This year the contest received 117 entries, and the jury decided to distribute the prize money of 2000 Swedish crowns (just under €200) to the following three winners. Titles given in Swedish with English translations and some comments from the jury are added:
First prize: “Bläcklingar” (“Inklings”) by Fredrik Stennek. “A fine tale in the succession of HC Andersen… A portrait of a society collapsing under censorship and oppression…but humour and longing for freedom is bigger. It raises questions of freedom of the press and freedom of opinion“.
Second prize: “Hon” (“She”) by Eva Ullerud. “A wonderfully creepy story… When the threat is close, really close, it easily becomes invisible, but even creepier.”
Third prize: “Götheborg” (“Gothenburg”) by Dennis Jacobsson. “An alternate history explaining why the ship Götheborg went under in the 1700’s. The atmosphere is as thick as the wool in the woolen clothes of the characters, the danger as tangible as the smell of gunpowder on gundeck, and the curiousity of the reader picks up wind.”
Five stories – By Jonas Bengtsson, Emanuel Blume, Lisa Hågensen, Hanna Kristoffersson and Jens Mattsson – also received honourary mentions by the jury, consisting of the sf/f authors Niklas Krog, Pia Lindestrand and Karolina Bjällerstedt Mickos. All stories were judged without author identification.
(8) Lela E. Buis called a story to the attention of select Twitter readers.
Here’s her description of David Levithan’s Every Day.
Every Day was published in 2013 and received the Lambda Award for Best LBGTQ Children’s/Teen Book. It went on to feature on the New York Times Bestseller List. This means my opinion isn’t unusual, either from the literary community or the fan community. However, this book never made a ripple in the SF&F community because SF&F isn’t something Levithan normally writes.
(9) NASA has some thoughts about how difficult it would be to send humans to Mars.
(10) The agency also helped celebrate National Coffee Day.
(11) Kameron Hurley might be overdue for a few convention Guest of Honor invites.
(12) Hurley also tweeted a link which ultimately takes readers to G. Derek Adams’ guest post on This Blog Is A Ploy about how to sell your books in a way that actually sells books, but doesn’t make you feel like a shyster.
(13) Amanda S. Green agrees that she was quote laundering. Too bad she can’t admit that without first strawmanning a false accusation about something I never said.
First of all, I had someone (and I will let you guys guess where they came from) basically accuse me of not having read Scalzi’s post that I referred to in my Saturday blog. The entire basis for this person — as well as the condemnation from the referring blog — seems to be because I didn’t link to the Scalzi post. Instead, I linked to Teleread. Well, let me set the record straight. I did read the original post. I didn’t link to it because I know the readers here on MGC have the ability to google and find the original source if they want to read it. Teleread had excerpted the parts I wanted and I happened to also agree, for the most part, with what Chris Meadows had to say. So, that is what I linked to.
There are basically two reasons why I don’t link to a post. The first is as I stated above. I know our readers here can go find the original if they want to. The second is when I don’t want to send additional traffic their way.
(14) The X-Files is returning as a six-episode event series in 2016. David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson will also be back as Mulder and Scully.
[Thanks to John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Daniel Dern.]