December 2, 2005
Various Ansible readers demanded an RSS feed, and --
after months of hesitation caused by laziness, technofear and
uncertainty about what an RSS feed actually was -- I've stirred
myself to put up a minimalist version at
Should I confine this to the monthly Ansible or add
pointers to Runcible as it appears each week? H'mm, that begins to
sound like work....
Terry Pratchett savours another accolade: 'On Sunday AM
on BBC1 yesterday Andrew Marr was kind enough to describe me as "following
in the tradition of Philip Pullman and JK Rowling." And a
fine tradition it is.' (28 November)
Farah Mendlesohn will end her six-year editorship of
Foundation with issue 100 in 2007. All her remaining
issues are full; letters and articles should henceforth be sent to
the new editor Graham Sleight (gmail.com address 'Foundation.sf').
Who adds: 'I was hoping that being Mr Foundation simply entailed
appearing as a hologram every thousand years to tell folk where
they were going wrong. But apparently not ...'
Thog's Technological Wizardry. An ITV teletext report of
the coming film of The
Prestige says that the cast will include David Bowie: 'Bowie
is set to play Nikola Tesla, a real-life Serbian magician who
discovered the rotating magic field in the early 20th Century.'
Stephen Baxter was the first recipient of the Oxford
University SF Group award for 'best Speculative Fiction novel
published in paperback in the preceding academic year'. He was
slightly bemused to learn in late November that 'Coalescent
actually won last May, but the person who was supposed to e-mail
you at the time and invite you to Oxford never got round to it.'
Speaking as a former president, that sounds like the OUSFG I
Iain Banks has a letter in New Scientist:
'Symbolically, reason has already triumphed in the debate over
intelligent design. The faith-based side has shifted from using
the term "creationism" to using "intelligent design".
So their argument has ... evolved.'
R.I.P. Gary S Potter (1959-2005), US horror fan
and reviewer whose fanzine was The Point Beyond (from
1989) and who co-published the story chapbook Voyages into
Darkess by Stephen Laws & Mark Morris, died unexpectedly
on 13 February 2005 aged 46.
Wendie Jo Sperber (1958-2005), US actress who played the
kid sister in Back to the Future I and III, had long been
ill with breast cancer and died on 29 November. She was 47.
Lonely Hearts of Gor. A reader sends the
'alt.sex.column' page from a recent San Francisco Bay Guardian,
in which 'Dark Wolf' asks: 'I am a dominant Gorean male (please
look it up and divulge information to the public about us, for we
are little-known) looking for a Gorean submissive woman. Do you
know of any place in San Francisco?' Alas, although agony aunt
Andrea Nemerson responds at great length, she's less than
sympathetic. 'You guys are furries, basically, although unlike
people who base their identities and lifestyles on funny animal
cartoons and nylon plush, the somewhat Wagnerian, vaguely
Nietzschean, faintly Randian world of Gor is essentially
humorless. But then, it would be.'
Pratchett interviewed at Scifi.com.
postage stamps of DC superheroes (July 2007).
convention chat forum.
Lewis rises from the grave to denounce Disney's live-action
Touchy-Feely. In a
polemic headlined 'The trouble with television is that it
can't stop shoving liberal values down our throats' (14 Nov), Mark
Ravenhill particularly deplores the recent Doctor Who
insight that 'Daleks have feelings too'.
Thog's Masterclass. Method Acting Dept. 'May
furrowed her brow. Her pupils jittered side to side, as if her
frontal lobes were doing heavy lifting. Her gaze was so intense,
it looked like her skull could blow up in a puff of hot steam at
any moment. Then her face lit up with a divine epiphany.' (Greg
Vilk, Golem, 2005)
Langford is an author and a gentleman. His newsletter,
is the essential SF-insider sourcebook of wit and incongruity. His
most recent books are The
SEX Column and other misprints, collecting ten years of
columns and essays for SFX magazine; 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.