And here is our weekly round-up of interesting links about speculative fiction from around the web, this time with yet more Hugo debate as well as plenty of discussion of Avengers: Age of Ultron, Daredevil and Marvel in general.
Speculative fiction in general:
- Andrew Liptak profiles John Wyndham.
- The Washington Post profiles Andy Weir.
- Elena Linville shares her appreciation for Sir Terry Pratchett.
- James Wallace Harris points out that it's the writing rather than the science which dates older science fiction.
- Heather Massey reports that a publisher demanded a writer to remove SF elements and worldbuildings from an SF romance, claiming that the SF elements would too hard for romance readers to understand.
- Christa Yelich-Koth explains why she loves space opera.
- Phenderson Djeli Clark discusses fantasy's othering fetish.
- Font Folly discusses the stories marginalised people have to tell.
- The Guardian asks why YA novels about politics are always dystopian.
- Keith Allison discusses the relativity of dystopias, taking Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkinson as an example.
- Jill Lepore discusses the scientific background of Orphan Black.
- Some people appear to be upset about Charlize Theron's starring role in Mad Max: Fury Road.
- Raych Krueger asks us to rethink the princess stereotype.
- Caroline Siede discusses the hypocrisy and uneven distribution of nude scene in Game of Thrones.
- Leigh Alexander explains why the stories are often so bad in videogames.
Avengers: Age of Ultron, Daredevil and Marvel in general:
- Juliet Kahn wonders why so many superheroines are rather boring, making them good role models rather than interesting characters.
- Cher Martinetti points out that it's time for Hollywood to embrace female supervillains.
- G.W. Thomas shares his thoughts on Daredevil.
- Caroline Siede explores the portrayal of masculinity in the Daredevil TV show.
- Caroline Siede also discusses the stereotypical portrayal of Asians in Daredevil.
- Alexandra Erin shares some thoughts about the connection between Captain America and Daredevil in the TV show.
- Jamie Wyman complains about the lack of female characters of note in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and how many of them are treated on screen.
- Jill Lepore takes a look at Age of Ultron and A-Force, the new all-female Avengers team, with her two young sons.
- Leia Calderon responds to Jill Lepore with more background on the superheroines Lepore dismisses.
- G. Willow Wilson, writer of A-Force, also responds to Jill Lepore.
- A former Marvel employee explains why there is so little merchandise featuring Marvel superheroines.
- Sady Doyle claims that Avengers: Age of Ultron is badly written and also destroying the popcorn movie as a whole.
- Eleanor Arnason responds with her thoughts on Age of Ultron.
- Devin Faraci takes a look at the character arcs in Age of Ultron.
- Melinda Snodgrass shares her thoughts on Avengers: Age of Ultron.
- Cheryl Morgan shares her thoughts on Avengers: Age of Ultron.
- Jim C. Hines shares his thoughts about Age of Ultron.
- Arthur Chu discusses what Ex Machina and Age of Ultron say about our fear of artificial intelligence.
- Kelly Dickerson explains why we shouldn't be freaked out by the superintelligent robots in Ex Machina and Age of Ultron.
- The winners of the 2014 Bram Stoker Awards have been announced.
- The winners of the 2014 Australian Shadows Awards have been announced.
- The winners of the 2015 Sir Julius Vogel Awards have been announced.
- The finalists for the 2014 John W. Campbell Memorial Award have been announced.
- The finalists for the 2014 Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award have been announced.
- The nominees for the 2014 Shirley Jackson Awards have been announced.
- The winners of the 2015 German Science Fiction Prize have been announced.
- The nominees for the 2015 Premios Ignotus, the Spanish SFF award, have been announced.
- Martin Wisse shares a list of notable, award-nominated or winning SFF novels of 2014.
- Alis Franklin compares various genre awards and who votes for and wins them.
- Mihalea Perkovic takes a look at the Hugo controversy from a Croatian POV.
- Redneck Gaijin shares his thoughts on the Hugo controversy and points out that no one is entitled to a Hugo.
- Jason Sanford explains why even a broad support for "No Award" will not mean the end of the Hugos.
- John Scalzi points out that the Hugos are not actually being destroyed.
- Making Light has a proposal for changing the Hugo nomination process to limit the influence of slates.
- Martin Wisse explains the Baen fallacy.
- David Gerrold points out the irony and contradictions in many statements from the Sad Puppy side.
- K. Tempest Bradford and David Gerrold both point out that the Hugo controversy had the unintended consequence of leading to a record number of Worldcon supporting memberships.
- Nicholas Whyte analyses the membership numbers of the London and Spokane Worldcons.
- Jim C. Hines analyses the gender breakdown of past and present Hugo nominees.
- S.L. Huang does the math and also analyses the gender breakdown of past and present Hugo nominees.
- Chaos Horizon shares some Hugo nomination and voting statistics.
- Matthew Foster explains how he is voting for the Hugos.
- Alexandra Erin reviews famous children's books Sad Puppy style.
Writing and publishing:
- Nick Mamatas discusses good versus bad writing with some examples.
- Brent Weeks shares the three key writing tools he learned from reading other writers.
- Mette Ivie Harrison talks about protecting your creative self.
- Damien Walter tells writers that they should resist becoming just one thing.
- Kyra Halland interviews her characters Silas and Lainie.
- Helen Lowe talks about plotters and pantsers.
- Stacy Claflin explains how she wrote 150000 words in one month.
- Rob McClellan shares some facts about e-book production costs and pricing.
- Jim Hines, Kameron Hurley and Mary Robinette Kowal discuss negotiating social media for writers.
- Patty Jansen evaluates some promotional techniques for writers.
- Veronica Scott interviews Sharon Lynn Fisher.
- Collen Sheehan interviews Robin Chambers.
- Josh Vogt interviews M. Darusha Wehm.
- Kristin Centorcelli interviews Ethan Reid.
- Robyn Lupo interviews Annie Bellet.
- Nadine Matheson interviews Michael Patrick Hicks.
- S.W. Fairbrother also interviews Michael Patrick Hicks.
- Ted Cross interviews Michael Patrick Hicks as well.
- Michael Patrick Hicks reviews Weapons of Mass Deception by David Bruns and J.R. Olson.
- Paul Weimer reviews The Apollo Quartet by Ian Sales.
- Chris Gerrib reviews A Sword into Darkness by Thomas A. Mays.
- Judy Goodwin reviews The Passage by Justin Cronin.
- The Anathema, a comic series by Tom Savage, is looking for funding.
- Fangirl, a graphic novel by Tom Stillwell, is looking for backers.
- Hard Wyred, a cyberpunk comic by Erik Bitmanis and Joshua Suarez, is looking for funding.
- The Future of Travel Exhibition by the Museum of Science Fiction is looking for funding.
- The Heinlein Society is looking for donations to fund a bust of Robert A. Heinlein to be displayed at the state capitol in Heinlein's birth state Missouri.
- The DiverSciFi Convention, a con focussing on diverse SFF, is looking for support to finance its inaugural convention in New York City in 2016.
- LightSail, a solar sail powered spacecraft, is looking for funding.
Science and technology:
- Living in space means recycling everything.
- The USA considers breaking international treaties to mine asteroids.
- Archeology robots explore places humans cannot access.
Free online fiction:
- "A Song for You" by Jennifer Marie Brissett in Terraform.
- "Spaceships in the Desert" by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.
- Chapter 11 of The Pirate's Grand Plan by K.S. Augustin.
- "The Comte de la Fere is a Ghost Story", chapter 51 of Musketeer Space by Tansy Rayner Roberts.
- Chapter 5 of "The Ballad of the Bad Lass", part 85 of The Descendants by Landon Porter.
- "Pilot Part 2", episode 2 of season 1 of Imago by Landon Porter.
Odds and ends:
- Watch a trailer for the Supergirl TV show.
- Watch a trailer for the Minority Report TV show.
- Watch a trailer for Jem and the Holograms (though unlike the original cartoon, the movie remake doesn't seem to be SFF)
- Watch Black Angel, the short film initially shown together with The Empire Strikes Back in 1980.
- Watch Game of Chairs, a Sesame Street parody of Game of Thrones.