March 11, 2005
At last, fanzines have been defined. The Milwaukee reporter
Stephenson, given the job of profiling the editor of a
(non-sf) zine, sought words to explain this esoteric term for
modern readers: 'A zine is kind of like a blog, but with staples.'
(Thanks to Janice Eisen for the link.)
The James Tiptree Award
for 'gender-bending' sf of 2004 went to two novels: Joe Haldeman's
Camouflage, and Johanna Sinisalo's Troll: A Love Story,
the US translation of her Finlandia Prize-winner Ennen päiävanlaskua
ei voi (2000; UK Not Before Sundown, 2003). Official
presentations will follow in early July.
The Alien Online, that popular British sf
webzine, is phasing out book reviews. Editor 'Ariel' will continue
weblog postings, but hopes to spend more time on other work
and real life. This decision follows the acrimonious 'Pavlougate'
affair, in which James Lovegrove's strongly negative TAL
review of Gene by Stel Pavlou (since nervously removed
from the site) caused the wounded author to respond in such mature
terms as: 'Eat shit and die you sad lamentable little fuck.'
R.I.P. Gertrude M. Carr (1907-2005), old-time US
fan who discovered fandom in 1949, was the original editor of Cry
of the Nameless, and continued her APA activity until 2003,
died on 6 March. She was 97.
Peter Foy (1925-2005), UK theatrical flight specialist
whose 'Flying by Foy' company provided wire-flying effects for
stage (Peter Pan, Dracula the Musical, The
Lion King), screen (Fantastic Voyage, The Wiz)
and TV (The Flying Nun), died on 17
February aged 79.
Debra Hill (1950-2005), US screenwriter and producer who
worked on various Halloween films (from 1978), The Fog
(1980), and Escape From New York (1981), died on 7 March.
She was 54.
Iain M. Banks (yes, that's what the official
announcement calls him, with the science-fictional middle initial)
honorary DLitt degree from the University of Glasgow this
summer, for being an 'Acclaimed author and ambassador for
Scotland's literary culture'.
2005 Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate happens in New York on
30 March; the theme is 'why our solar system looks the way it
The Oxford English
Dictionary sf project has been redesigned and relaunched
here: it now offers partial access to the OED database-in-progress
of sf/fannish terms and citations.
bastard' was one early on-line response to the
News headline 'New Dr Who leaked onto internet'. The
story reports net piracy of a 45-minute episode called Rose,
three weeks before the expected TV launch on BBC1.
Thog's Masterclass. Basic Arithmetic Dept.
'Caine [...] hobbled to the kitchen, closing the door behind him,
1.3 seconds before three soldiers burst into the room. ... Their
names are Martin Crowe, Juan Esposito, Ron McCoy, and Charlie
Rainer.' (Adam Fawer, Improbable, 2005)
Langford is an author and a gentleman. His newsletter, Ansible,
is the essential SF-insider sourcebook of wit and incongruity. His
most recent books are Different
Kinds of Darkness, a new short-story collection of
horror, SF, and fantasy, Up
Through an Empty House of Stars: Reviews and Essays 1980-2002,
100 pieces of Langfordian genre commentary, and He
Do the Time Police in Different Voices, a short-story
collection that brings together all of Dave's SF parodies and
pastiches. (This is a scary thought. Are you ready to laugh that
Dave lives in Reading, England with his wife Hazel, 25,000
books, and a couple of dozen Hugo awards. He continues to add
books and Hugos.