The Geomancer


And then there's this...

Seriously Cool

Via SF Signal, Bear McCreary's "All Along the Watchtower," used in the last season finale of Battlestar Galactica, matched up here with some machinima battle sequences from EVE Online.

Seriously, cool, yes? And one more data point that makes me think the explosion of SF&F net-film is moments away...


Towards Perfection: Infoquake Inspired Artwork

Inspired by David Louis Edelman's Infoquake,and used for the cover to the newsletter for Camp Hill/Harrisburg, PA's SF&F reading group, Watch the Skies, for January 2009. Here's the link to the artwork, on Flickr.

MIDWINTER: Starred Review in PW

Yeah! A Starred Review in Publishers Weekly for Matthew Sturges' Midwinter!

Midwinter Matthew Sturges. Pyr, $15.98 paper (320p) ISBN 978-1-59102-734-8

Comic book writer Sturges (Jack of Fables) makes an impressive debut with this superb low fantasy. During the titular cold season, the imprisoned soldier Mauritane is offered the opportunity to earn his freedom if he undertakes a risky mission for Seelie Queen Titania. Mauritane brings along a motley crew from the prison, including a gorgeous foreign warrior elf, a disgraced guard and a human scientist trapped in their world. Their Dirty Dozen–style exploits are interwoven with political intrigues at both the Seelie and Unseelie Courts. Sturges deftly works in superb character development, solid action sequences and engaging heroes and villains, as well as an original and fascinating mythological backbone for the Fae world. Although there is certainly room for the planned sequel, this tale stands nicely on its own. (Mar.)


Sci Fi Wire on End of the Century:
Chris Roberson's latest novel proves that he's the Secret History go-to guy for the 21st century... he reveals the connections we never imagined between King Arthur and Alice in Wonderland, David Bowie and Jack the Ripper, swords and physics. To these elements, Roberson adds time travel, gaslight detection, Moorcockian extended families and temporal adventuresses, occult government research, cutting-edge scientific speculation and a sinister conspiracy that reaches to the end of time—and he braids everything together in three clever converging plots.

Coraline Trailer

I confess to being the only person on earth (apparently) who thought The Nightmare Before Christmas was "just okay." However, I'm pretty excited by this:


Tom Lloyd's The Twilight Herald

Tom Lloyd's The Twilight Herald

Art by Todd Lockwood
Design by Grace M. Conti-Zilsberger

Hellboy and Me

All writers are fans. However much they attempt to be the consummate professional in public, at conventions or in private they geek-out like the best. I have so much on my geek agenda it's almost a book in itself: The Prisoner, Twin Peaks, Twilight Zone, Batman, Ray Bradbury, Michael Moorcock, Orson Welles, The Doors and the Universal monster movies for starters.

But way up the list is Mike Mignola's Hellboy. So when I was asked if I wanted to write a novel about the big red guy, I did what any other fan would do...

Art by Duncan Fegredo and Dave Stewart.

What would be your geek moment?

Mark Chadbourn


From the Typewriter to the Bookstore

Thanks to Mike Resnick for pointing this out. It's hysterical. And all true.


FF2 up for the PKD: 2008 Philip K. Dick Award Nominees Announced

Fast Forward 2has just been shortlisted for the 2008 Philip K. Dick Award, with the result that I can barely type let alone think. So in lieu of being eloquent, here's the press release:
The judges of the 2008 Philip K. Dick Award and the Philadelphia SF Society, along with the Philip K. Dick Trust, are pleased to announce six nominated works that comprise the final ballot for the award:

EMISSARIES FROM THE DEAD by Adam-Troy Castro (Eos Books)
ENDGAME by Kristine Smith (Eos Books)
FAST FORWARD 2 edited by Lou Anders (Pyr)
JUDGE by Karen Traviss (Eos Books)
TERMINAL MIND by David Walton (Meadowhawk Press)
TIME MACHINES REPAIRED WHILE-U-WAIT by K. A. Bedford (EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing)

First prize and any special citations will be announced on Friday, April 10, 2009 at Norwescon 32 at the Doubletree Seattle Airport Hotel, SeaTac, Washington.

The Philip K. Dick Award is presented annually with the support of the Philip K. Dick Trust for distinguished science fiction published in paperback original form in the United States. The award is sponsored by the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society and the Philip K. Dick Trust and the award ceremony is sponsored by the NorthWest Science Fiction Society. Last year’s winner was NOVA SWING by M. John Harrison (Bantam Spectra) with a special citation to FROM THE NOTEBOOKS OF DR. BRAIN by Minister Faust (Del Rey). The 2008 judges are Tobias Buckell, M. M. Buckner (chair), Walter Hunt, Rosemary Kirstein, and William Senior.

For more information, contact the award administration:

David G. Hartwell (914) 769-5545.

Gordon Van Gelder (201) 876-2551

For more information about the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society,

Contact Gary Feldbaum (215) 563-2511

For more information about the Philip K. Dick Trust:

For more information about Norwescon:

Contact NorthWest SF Society: (360) 438-0871
Congrats to all the nominees, and a special shout of gratitude to everyone who contributed to Fast Forward 2!

Update 1/14/09: Kristine Smith's Endgame is apparently ineligible. It has been removed from the list, and replaced with my friend Jeff Carlson's Plague War. Congratulations Jeff! 

Podcast: Lou Anders and Rick Kleffel Discuss the New Fantasy

I'm up on Rick Kleffel's Agony Column podcast talking about what Rick calls "The New Fantasy," and covering works by Joe Abercrombie, Tom Lloyd, Joel Shepherd, James Enge, Justina Robson, Mark Chadbourn, Matthew Sturges, Chris Roberson and others. We even discuss Doctor Who's latest casting announcement and the effect Obama may have on genre fiction. Here's the direct link, and the show is available via iTunes as well (it's episode 555).

Rick writes:
"What's darker, grittier and sells better than expected in days such as these which are already dark and gritty enough without the help of excellent fantasy writers? Well, it's what I'm going to call for want of a better term, The New Fantasy, and since Lou Anders of Pyr Books is publishing a boatload of it in the upcoming months, I thought I'd give him a call. Lou Anders is a lucky guy. His job is to read a bunch of great fiction and then publish it, and as it happens — or at least as he observes and I concur — fiction does well during recessions. So what's going to happen to the fiction market during a full-blown, we're-wearin'-barrels Depression? Looks like it's boom times for genre fiction. Lou and I explored The New Fantasy and talked about Pyr's and other publishers current and upcoming titles."


Can Fix-Ups Be Fixed?

James Enge on the "episodic novel":
It’s easy to see why an episodic novel might not work. The narrative rhythms of an effective short story are wholly different from those of a novel. Suppose we have a series about the Star Smasher. In the first story, the Star Smasher confronts the ultimate challenge of his career when he faces the searing radium-stars of the Nebular Ninja. In the second story, the Star Smasher confronts the ultimate challenge of his career in the savage star-claws of the Galactic Leopard. In the third story, to introduce some sadly needed variety, we send the Star Smasher on vacation, where he discovers the nefarious plots of the Cruel Concierge of Cassiopeia K. In the fourth story we reveal that the Star Smasher is the secret identity of Glurk Franduel, a minor character who has appeared in the series before. The fifth story is a plotless postmodern meditation on suffering and secrecy where Glurk Franduel and his Star Smasher persona argue at length and with many gratuitious high-cultural allusions in an obvious and somewhat futile attempt to snag a literary award. There is no sixth story because the magazine folded or the editor regained his sanity.


For Your Consideration: Books Edited in 2008

Yes, it's that time again. This year, I am eligible for both the Long Form and Short Form Best Editor categories, and there are several eligible novels out from Pyr as well. And so, for your award-nominating convenience, here are all the books for which I served as editor in 2008 at Pyr. Novels that debuted in 2008 are in BOLD.
  • John Meaney - Resolution: Book Three of the Nulapeiron Sequence
  • Kay Kenyon - Bright of the Sky: Book One of the Entire and the Rose
  • Kay Kenyon - A World Too Near: Book Two of the Entire and the Rose
  • Joe Abercrombie - Before They Are Hanged: The First Law Book Two
  • Theodore Judson - The Martian General's Daughter
  • Sean Williams - The Crooked Letter: Books of the Cataclysm One
  • Alan Dean Foster - Sagramanda
  • Robert Silverberg - Son of Man (reprint)
  • David Louis Edelman - MultiReal: Volume III of the Jump 225 trilogy
  • Mike Resnick - Stalking the Unicorn (reprint)
  • Mike Resnick - Stalking the Vampire
  • Joe Abercrombie - Last Argument of Kings: The First Law Book Three
  • Justina Robson - Going Under: Quantum Gravity Book Three
  • Tom Lloyd - The Stormcaller: Book One of the Twilight Reign
  • Lou Anders,ed. - Fast Forward 2 (anthology)
  • Sean Williams - The Blood Debt: Books of the Cataclysm Two
  • Mike Resnick - Starship: Rebel
Very proud of all these books and authors, quite a few of which are showing up on the various Best of 2008 lists online. And I'm very pleased as well that quite a few entries from Fast Forward 2 are showing up in the various Year's Bests' table of contents. And though it wasn't Pyr, the other anthology I edited in 2008 was the alternate history mystery, Sideways In Crime, and very proud of it too I am.

Onward to 2009!


SF Site's Reader's Choice

It's time again for SFSite's Annual SF Site Readers' Choice: Best Read of 2008, where you can vote for your favorite books of the past year. Deadline for voting is February 6, 2009, midnight Eastern Standard Time. Rules and guidelines at the link. May the best books win!