And here is our weekly round-up of interesting links about speculative fiction from around the web, this week with best SFF of 2015 lists, lots of Star Wars and Star Trek discussion, comments on the TV show Into the Badlands and the streaming video shows Jessica Jones and The Man in the High Castle as well as the ongoing controversery about the World Fantasy Award trophy.
Speculative fiction in general:
- Amazon shares its best science fiction and fantasy books of 2015.
- Barnes & Noble also shares its best science fiction and fantasy books of 2015.
- At the Washington Post, Nancy Hightower shares her favourite science fiction and fantasy books of 2015.
- Jeffrey Tucker attempts to explain why science fiction is so obsessed with Mars.
- Richard Dunn and Marek Kukula take a look at utopian depictions of Mars in science fiction.
- Gordon M. Jackson takes a look at the ten dumbest artificial intelligences ever.
- Lela E. Buis talks about the rate of obsolescence in science fiction.
- John De Nardo explains why he lioves retro science fiction.
- Jeff Somers talks about psionics in science fiction.
- Suzanne Jacobs talks about Solarpunk.
- Kim Stanley Robinson discusses the science behind his novel Aurora.
- Laurie Penny wonders whether the popularity of dystopian fiction among teenagers is linked to the general state of the world.
- Marama Whyte says good-bye to The Hunger Games.
- Ginjer Buchanan talks about women in SFF publishing.
- Elizabeth Garbee explains how the portrayal of scientists in pulp science fiction has contributed to sexism in the science and technology fields.
- Kate Elliott shares ten fantasy novels whose depiction of women did not want to make her smash things.
- Aliette de Bodard talks about science fiction, fantasy and all things inbetween.
- Sam Reader shares his appreciation for Bridge of Birds by Barry Hughart.
- Helen Lowe discusses Arthurian fantasy.
- Norbert Schürer takes a look at Tolkien criticism today.
- Timothy Sandefur takes a look at the politics of Star Trek.
- Kayla Iacovino worries that the plans for upcoming Star Trek movies prove that Paramount simply does not get Star Trek.
- Robert Repino believes that now is the perfect time for a new Star Trek series.
- Ada Jarvis shares her thoughts on Star Wars: A New Hope from the POV of someone who has never seen the movie.
- Emily Asher-Perrin offers a reappreciation of Revenge of the Sith.
- Julia Greenberg explains how Disney plans to make sure that we can never escape Star Wars.
- Adam Roberts talks about the future of Star Wars and shared universes in general.
- Don Kaye looks at various works that inspired Star Wars.
- Jeremy Hsu discusses which science fiction films get cited in academic research.
- Anthony Vicino talks about Sense8 and characterisation.
- H. Shaw-Williams discusses Supergirl's smart approach to the "female Superman" problem.
Comments on Into the Badlands:
- Frazier Tharpe is not pleased that AMC, a TV channel once known for award-winning "quality television", is now home to several SFF shows based on graphic novels such as Preacher and Into the Badlands.
- Brian Moylan shares his thoughts about the TV show Into the Badlands.
- Eric Francisco calls Into the Badlands "Shakespeare with katanas".
- Justin Monroe claims that Into the Badlands finally brings great martial arts to TV.
- Jack O'Keefe explains just where the precisely the Badlands of Into the Badlands are located.
Comments on Jessica Jones:
- The Edinburg Review shares everything viewers need to know about Jessica Jones, the new Marvel Comics based streaming video series.
- Alex Abad-Santos also explains the background of Jessica Jones.
- Bonnie Burton explains why she is excited for Jessica Jones.
- Joshua Yehl explains why he believes that Jessica Jones will be better than Daredevil.
- Trent Moore explains that Jessica Jones is nothing like Daredevil, which makes it so great.
- Mary McNamara feels that Jessica Jones rewrites the definition of superhuman.
- Jonathan Holmes considers Jessica Jones the birth of purple noir.
- Bethonie Butler explains that Jessica Jones is exactly the hero we want her to be.
Comments on The Man in the High Castle:
- Winston Cook-Wilson points out that The Man in the High Castle doesn't quite manage to capture the atmosphere of Philip K. Dick's novel.
- Geoffrey McNab believes that The Man in the High Castle will get a cult following.
- Leah Schnelbach shares her thoughts on The Man in the High Castle.
- David Bianculli shares his thoughts on The Man in the High Castle.
- Kameron Hurley explains why you should watch The Man in the High Castle.
Awards and World Fantasy Award controversy:
- Voting is underway in the final round of the Goodreads Choice Awards in various genres, including science fiction, fantasy and horror.
- The SFWA has released its Nebula Awards suggested reading list for 2015.
- The winners of the 2015 Ion Hobana Awards have been announced.
- Steven Erikson weighs in on the controversy surrounding the replacement of the Lovecraft statue that serves as the World Fantasy Award trophy with something else.
- Laura J. Mixon also weighs in on the Lovecraft bust controversy.
- Lenika Cruz weighs in on the Lovecraft bust controversy as well.
- Troy L. Wiggins also shares his opinion on the Lovecraft bust controversy.
- John Picacio shares his thoughts about how to select the new trophy.
Writing, Publishing and Promotion:
- Paul Cornell talks about a day in the life of an author.
- Kameron Hurley explains why having a writing day job won't ruin your fiction writing.
- Michael R. Underwood talks about inspiration and influences.
- Rachel Swirsky shares some advice on how to start your second book.
- Michael Galloway talks about using posterboard as an outlining tool.
- Jay Allan talks about worldbuilding.
- Anthony Vicino talks about ending your story like a boss.
- John Benedict shares his publishing advice for aspiring authors.
- David Neth shares some tips for dealing with bad reviews.
- Wayne Allan Brenner interviews Neil Gaiman.
- Matthew Stott interviews Eamon Ambrose.
- Liz Bourke interviews Tanya Huff.
- Gavia Baker-Whitelaw interviews Ellen Kushner.
- Maddy Myers interviews Genevieve Valentine.
- Tracee Gleichner interviews Beth Cato.
- Mieneke van der Salm interviews Michelle Hauck.
- Stuart Starosta interviews Liu Cixin.
- Francesca Barbini interviews Stan Nicholls.
- Kristin Centorcelli interviews J.S. Law.
- Kyra Halland interviews Emma Woods.
- Katherine Cross interviews Cat Fitzpatrick and Casey Plett, editors of an upcoming anthology of speculative fiction by transgender writers.
- NPR interviews Stan Lee.
- Paul Di Filippo reviews Radiance by Catherynne M. Valente.
- Paul Weimer reviews Regeneration by Stephanie Saulter.
- David Herter reviews Medusa's Web by Tim Powers.
- Josephine Hao reviews Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews.
- The Qwillery also reviews Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews.
- Anthony Vicino reviews Going Dark by Linda Nagata.
- James Nicoll reviews The Hugo Winners, Volume 1 and 2, edited by Isaac Asimov.
- Sarah Levin reviews the pilot episode of The Expanse.
- Agent of the Imperium by Marc Miller, a science fiction novel set in the Traveller universe, is looking for funding.
- A Tale of Shadows: Cause and Effect, a fantasy comic by Lyndon White, is looking for funding.
- The Fierce Are Fading, a science fiction graphic novel by Joshua D. Howell and Ilaria Apostoli, is looking for funding.
- McLongneck's Epic Space Adventure, a science book for kids by Andrew Frazer, illustrated by Galen Frazer, is looking for funding.
- Critic Lis Carey could use some help.
- Sarah Avery shares her experiences at the 2015 World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga Springs, New York.
- Chris Fagan shares his experiences at the 2015 Gollancz Festival of Writers in London.
- Mark L. Blackman reports about the latest installment in the New York Review of Science Fiction reading series in New York City.
Science and technology:
- Seven technologies turning science fiction into fact.
- A design student from Taiwan has developed a prosthetic tentacle as an alternative to artificial limbs.
- Stephanie Lay explains the Uncanny Valley.
- Scurvy has returned and is affecting young men, college students and the poor.
Free online fiction:
- "Cat Pictures Please" by Naomi Kritzer in Clarkesworld.
- "When the Music Ends" by Philip Ball in Nature.
- "When We Were Giants" by Helena Bell in Lightspeed.
- "Wearing the Hat" by Mike Reeves-McMillan in The Sockdolager.
- "Thing to Do after They're Gone" by Mimi Mondal in Daily Science Fiction.
- "First Do No Harm" by Jonathan Edelstein in Strange Horizons.
- "Documentary" by Vajra Chandrasekera in Lightspeed.
- "The Worst Sound" by William Meikle.
- "Forest of the Genres" by Floyd Looney.
- Download a collection of free short stories, all of which are eligible for the 1941 retro Hugo Awards.
- Download Future Visions, a free science fiction anthology.
Odds and ends:
- Watch a trailer for season 2 of Agent Carter.
- Watch a new teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
- Watch a TV spot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
- Watch the Star Wars sketch from the BBC's Children in Need. If you want to donate, you can do so here.
- Watch a trailer for The Expanse.
- Watch a trailer for Allegiant, part 3 of the Divergent series.
- Watch a trailer for 400 Days.
- Watch a trailer for Midnight Special.
- Watch a trailer for Jongo, a science fiction show set in Johannesburg.
- Watch a trailer for Gods of Egypt.