And here is our weekly round-up of interesting links about speculative fiction from around the web:
Speculative fiction in general:
- At io9, Charlie Jane Anders explains why it matters if the science in science fiction is accurate.
- The Wall Street Journal talks about slipstream fiction going mainstream.
- At Electric Literature, Henry Stewart discusses the themes of death and growing up in the works of Ray Bradbury.
- Joyce Chng talks about world SF and being a hybrid writer.
- At SF Signal, Rachel Cordasco takes a look at upcoming SFF novels in translation.
- Mark Bould has a round-up of African science fiction.
- At Bookriot, Jeremy Anderberg wonders why we love apocalyptic fiction.
- Micah Ackerman explains why preppers and survivalists deserve respect rather than ridicule.
- Jen Williams shares her appreciation for five great no-nonsense women of fantasy.
- Ann Somerville talks about the challenges of being a woman writing SFF.
- William Meikle shares his top 10 fantasy novels of all time.
- At SF Signal, Marshall Ryan Maresca explains why epic and urban fantasy aren't always mutually exclusive.
- Adrian Tchaikovsky talks about the depiction of war in epic fantasy.
- C.P.D. Harris explains the importance of gladiatorial combat in the world of his Domains of the Chosen series.
- Leanna Renee Hieber talks about writing gothic fantasy.
- At SF Signal, Leanna Renee Hieber talks about gaslamp fantasy.
- Ren Thompson talks about writing erotic horror.
- The Daily Beast attempts to explain why fan fiction is the future of publishing.
- BoingBoing tackles the term "guilty pleasure".
- At Pornokitsch (which is totally safe for work BTW), Jared Shurin discusses the extremely complicated rules and regulations of many SFF awards.
- At Cracked, Chris Buchholz takes a look at some largely forgotten SFF subgenres that were once hugely popular.
- The AV Club discusses the power and pitfalls of shipping.
- Fantasy Fraction takes a look at beloved SFF films of the 1980s.
- At the LA Times, the Wachowski siblings talk about the long journey of making Jupiter Ascending.
- Entertainment Weekly attempts to explain how the Wachowski siblings became George Lucas.
- Marvel Studios and Sony have announced that they will collaborate to bring Spider-Man into the Marvel cinematic universe.
- At Blastr, Trent Moore argues that Marvel should retire Peter Parker and make Miles Morales Spider-Man in the Marvel cinematic universe.
- Marvel Comics has announced an all-female Avengers team named A-Force.
- A leaked letter to his publishers reveals George R.R. Martin's original plans for A Song of Ice and Fire.
- At io9, Charlie Jane Anders explains what really went wrong with Star Trek's third season.
- SFWA has announced its guidelines for self-publishers.
- Writer Melanie Tem died aged 65.
- The nominations for the 2015 eFestival of Words are open.
Writing, publishing and promotion:
- Harry Connolly talks about writing rituals and how they can both help and hinder us.
- At Novelciraptor, several authors talk about their favourite part of the writing process.
- Marie Brennan talks about undermining the unreliable narrator.
- Jennifer R. Povey introduces her character Dorothy Mayling.
- Landon Porter talks about turning superpowers into storytelling devices.
- Karen Dudley talks about the challenges of research.
- David Farland shares some advice about when to stop polishing a manuscript.
- Kristine Kathryn Rusch talks about the perils of trend following.
- Jacqui Lofthouse talks about taking yourself seriously as a writer.
- Kameron Hurley discusses how the challenges that writers, particularly women and minority writers, face now are very different from those faced by writers ten or twenty years ago.
- Sherwood Smith talks about rapid changes in publishing in the 18th and early 19th centuries and draws some parallels to the situation today.
- At the Smashwords blog, Mark Coker talks about e-books as annuity.
- Ruth Nestvold shares some places to advertise your permafree.
- Sever Bronny interviews C.N. Crawford.
- Mihaela Perkovic interviews Milena Benini.
- The BBC World Service interview William Gibson (audio link).
- Michael Patrick Hicks reviews The Pendle Curse by Catherine Cavendish.
- Michael Patrick Hicks also reviews Master of Blood and Bone by Craig Saunders.
- Elena Linville reviews Atlanta Burns by Chuck Wendig.
- Jennifer R. Povey reviews Three Parts Dead by Max Gladstone.
- Second Run Reviews review The Witching Elm by C.N. Crawford.
- New Writer Podcast reviews Brush with Darkness and Blood of the Water by Jamie Maltman.
- Omni Reboot reviews Jupiter Ascending.
- The Stranger also reviews Jupiter Ascending.
- Tor.com also offers its take on Jupiter Ascending.
- At the Huffington Post, Christopher Rosen admits that he actually liked Jupiter Ascending.
- Paul Levinson reviews episode 1.4 of the TV show 12 Monkeys.
- The Geek's Guide to the Galaxy podcast is looking for backers.
- Slow Boat to Fast City, an anthology of retro style science fiction, is looking for funding.
- Dreams from the Witch House: Women of Lovecraft, an all-female Lovecraft anthology edited by Lynn Jamneck, is looking for backers.
- Selfies from the End of the World: Historical Accounts of the Apocalypse, an anthology of apocalyptic fiction published by the editors of Mad Scientist Journal, is looking for funding.
- Jodie O'Dell remembers her interactions with the Next Generation cast at a Star Trek convention in San Francisco.
Science and technology:
- A thin bubble-wrap-like coating can hide submarines from sonar.
- At the Guardian, Nate Berg talks about visions for the city of the future through the ages.
- The Hubble telescope captured a triple solar eclipse on Jupiter.
- BoingBoing explains why comets are like deep-fried ice cream.
- In Bulgaria, archaeologists have found the grave of a suspected vampire with a stake through his heart.
- Steven Kotler and Ken Goffman are arguing that the future is arriving faster than expected.
- In South Korea, a robot vaccuum cleaner accidentally tried to eat its sleeping owner.
- Will religions try to convert superintelligent artificial intelligences?
- Should we send messages to aliens?
Free online fiction:
- "Bundle of Joy" by Tiffani Angus at Pornokitsch.
- "Common Denominator" by John D. MacDonald at Pornokitsch.
- "The Lost City of Osiris: A Tale of Western Adventure" by Carol Borden at Pornokitsch.
- "The True History of Jewish Wizards at Hogwarts" by Nathaniel Stein in The New Yorker (yes, they publish fanfic now!)
- "Light in the Darkness" by V.A. Jeffrey
- "Courting Rites" by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.
- "Tuesdays" by Suzanne Palmer in Asimov's.
- Part 1.52 of "Blade Breaker"in The Shadow Wolf Sagas by C.P.D. Harris.
- Chapter 8 of The Dragon of Ankoll Keep by K.S. Augustin.
- Section 1 of Captive Spirit by Jodi Ralston.
- "All Cats are Grey (in Cyberspace)", part 38 of Musketeer Space by Tansy Rayner Roberts
- Chapter 1 of "Darkness Falling", part 84 of The Descendants by Landon Porter.
Odds and ends:
- A Captain America fan from Venezuela has gone to rather extreme length to turn himself into a real life replica of the Red Skull.
- Actor Hfthor Bjornsson, who plays Gregor Clegane a.k.a. the Mountain in Game of Thrones, has broken a 1000-year-old weightlifting record and is now officially the world's strongest viking.
- Watch a teaser for the new season of Orphan Black.
- Watch a trailer for season 5 of Games of Throne.