Reddit’s r/Fantasy group has chosen the nominees for the Best of /r/Fantasy 2020 — the Stabby Awards. The group has over 1.2 million members, although last year just 903 votes were cast. Voting continues until January 4. The winners will be announced January 6. There are many categories – the lists of nominees follow the jump. Best Novel of 2020 A Deadly Education, Naomi NovikA Time of Courage, John GwynneAge of Empyre, Michael J. SullivanBattleground, Jim ButcherBlack Sun, Rebecca RoanhorseCall of the Bone Ships, R.J. BarkerHarrow the Ninth, Tamsyn MuirKings of Heaven, Richard NellMexican Gothic, Sylvia Moreno-GarciaNetwork Effect, Martha WellsPeace Talks, Jim ButcherPiranesi, Susanna ClarkeShorefall, Robert Jackson BennettThe Brightest Shadow, Sarah LinThe Burning God, R.F. KuangThe City We Became, N.K. JemisinThe Empire of Gold, S.A. ChakrabortyThe Fires of Vengeance, Evan WinterThe Girl and the Stars, Mark LawrenceThe House in the Cerulean Sea, T.J. KluneThe Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, V.E. SchwabThe Midnight Bargain, C.L. PolkThe Once and Future Witches, Alix E. HarrowThe Only Good Indians, Stephen Graham JonesThe Relentless Moon, Mary Robinette KowalThe Space Between Worlds, Micaiah JohnsonThe Torch That Ignites the Stars, Andrew RoweThe Trouble With Peace, Joe AbercrombieThe Tyrant Baru Cormorant, Seth DickinsonThe Unspoken Name, A.K. LarkwoodThe Vanished Birds,...
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Cover by Sara Felix By James Bacon: This unique issue of Journey Planet comes in two languages in parallel text, Russian and English. With bilingual text on every page we look at the Science, Engineering, Science Fiction, Films, Comics and poetry that the theme of Russian Space has to offer.  Moscovite Co-Editor Ann Gry (Anna Gryaznova) was committed to ensure the issue was as accessible as possible to the readers, interested in the subject and spent a tremendous amount of time working on translations as well as seeking out new voices, and hearing from voices who may be very new to Journey Planet readers. This issue is a curated glimpse into the creative realms mostly inaccessible due to the language barrier and is an attempt to give an idea of how space theme connects us all.  With articles from Maria Ku, Mikhail Katyurichev and Danila Chvanov, a comprehensive look at space-themed comics by Andrey Malyshkin, as well as interviews with the creators of “Meteora” from Bubble comics, Askold Akishin and Alexandra Shevchenko, prose and comics are well covered. An interesting part is dedicated to visual poetry along with some traditional verses by Andrey Suzdalev. An extensive article on space-themed films, we...
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(1) BRADBURY’S CHAMPION. The Los Angeles Review of Books hosts “Ray Bradbury at 100: A Conversation Between Sam Weller and Dana Gioia”. COMMEMORATING THE CENTENNIAL of the great Ray Bradbury, biographer Sam Weller sat down with former California poet laureate and former chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts Dana Gioia for a wide-ranging conversation on Bradbury’s imprint on arts and culture. SAM WELLER: The first time I met you was at the White House ceremony for Ray Bradbury in November 2004. You were such a champion for Ray’s legacy — his advocate for both the National Medal of Arts and Pulitzer Prize. As we look at his 100th birthday, I want to ask: Why is Bradbury important in literary terms? DANA GIOIA: Ray Bradbury is one of the most important American writers of the mid-20th century. He transformed science fiction’s position in American literature during the 1950s. There were other fine sci-fi writers, but Ray was the one who first engaged the mainstream audience. He had a huge impact on both American literature and popular culture. He was also one of the most significant California writers of the last century. When one talks about Bradbury, one needs to choose a...
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(1) FRONT AND CENTER. Octavia Butler is on the cover of Huntington Frontiers, published by the Huntington Library in Pasadena. Read the cover article here: “A Handful of Earth, A Handful of Sky” by Lynell George. When I last encountered Octavia E. Butler, it was 2004 and she was slated to deliver the keynote at the Black to the Future Festival in Seattle, Washington. Time has flattened or obscured some of the details of days spent reporting on panels, lectures, and post-event gatherings. I don’t remember the precise order of events of that opening evening, but I do recall some of Butler’s heartfelt words about finding and making community in this brief but special moment when we were assembled together. I sat, scribbling notes in my reporter’s notebook, making shapes of letters in the darkness of the auditorium. Her voice didn’t seem to need amplification—it was warm and deep and burnished with authority, as if she was not just leading things off, but leading a country…. (2) NOT OUT OF LEFT FIELD. First Fandom Experience solves three eofannish mysteries in “V is for Vincent, Vernon, Vytautas”. Learn more about a famous photo taken over the weekend of the First Worldcon in...
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James Gunn with his Grand Master Award in 2007. The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) honors one living writer each year with the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award. The recent deaths of two distinguished sf writers have drawn attention to the award. The late Ben Bova is someone Gregory Benford wished would have gotten it. James Gunn, who passed away last week, deservedly did get it. And he is also now the fifth Grand Master to die in the past four years (preceded by Brian Aldiss, Ursula K. Le Guin, Harlan Ellison, and Gene Wolfe.) What writers are File 770 readers hoping SFWA will honor in years to come? Give your ideas in a comment. To start the discussion rolling I asked four writers who they think deserves priority.   Gregory Benford sent a list of five: Nancy KressBruce SterlingDavid BrinGreg BearSteve Baxter Ursula Vernon says: Oh lord…my choices might be rather idiosyncratic! But I’d want Terri Windling, Robin McKinley, Diane Duane, Barbara Hambly and Ellen Kushner to all be considered. Terri Windling would probably be top of my list. Past SFWA President Cat Rambo, who led the selection process during her years in office, sent this...
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The 38th issue of Uncanny Magazine, winner of five Hugos and a British Fantasy Award, will be available on January 5. Hugo Award-winning Publishers Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas are proud to present the 38th issue of their five-time Hugo Award-winning online science fiction and fantasy magazine, Uncanny Magazine. Stories from Uncanny Magazine have been finalists or winners of Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and World Fantasy Awards. As always, Uncanny features passionate SF/F fiction and poetry, gorgeous prose, provocative nonfiction, and a deep investment in the diverse SF/F culture, along with a Parsec Award-winning monthly podcast featuring a story, poem, and interview from that issue.  All of Uncanny Magazine’s content will be available in eBook versions on the day of release from Weightless Books, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Play, and Kobo. Subscriptions are always available through Amazon Kindle and Weightless Books. The free online content will be released in 2 stages — half on day of release and half on February 2.  Follow Uncanny on their website, or on Twitter and Facebook. Uncanny Magazine Issue 38 Table of Contents: Cover: Stars and Blessings by Nilah Magruder Editorials: “The Uncanny Valley” by Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas“Imagining Futures: Where Our Works Go from Here” by Elsa Sjunneson Fiction: “Tyrannosaurus Hex” by Sam J. Miller (1/5)“A House Full of Voices Is Never Empty” by Miyuki Jane Pinckard (1/5)“Pathfinding!” by Nicole Kornher-Stace (1/5)“Distribution” by Paul Cornell (2/2)“Femme and Sundance”...
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Aelita Award Michael Swanwick is the first U.S. writer to win the Aelita Award. Swanwick explained the award’s history to old readers of his blog: The Aelita was named after the 1923 science fiction novel Aelita by Alexei Tolstoy and is presented at Aelita, (also named after the novel), Russia’s oldest science fiction convention. The award was created in 1981 to honor a lifetime contribution to Soviet science fiction. Later, this became Russian science fiction and last year it was decided to expand the remit to cover SF globally. I am gobsmacked, as our British cousins say, to be the first American  ever to receive this award. For reasons that are all too familiar to everyone, the Aelita conference was virtual this year so I didn’t get to return to Ekaterinburg, a city I am very fond of, But that didn’t make the honor any less sweet. For more information, see the Wikipedia entry about the Aelita Award.
(1) EVADING DUTIES. Richard Garriott’s announcement that he secretly hid some of James Doohan’s ashes on the ISS inspired Steven H Silver’s post “A Brief History of Space Smuggling” for Amazing Stories. …The first mission to orbit the moon was the Apollo 8 mission on December 24 and 25, 1968. Knowing that the crew would be in orbit around the Moon on Christmas, NASA wanted to make sure that they had an appropriate Christmas dinner and provided dehydrated versions of the appropriate foods. Deke Slayton went a step further, and despite an official no-alcohol policy, he slipped in three mini bottles of Coronet Brandy for the crew to enjoy. William Borman, however, confiscated the bottles explaining that if there was any subsequent problem with the space craft, it would be blamed on the men drinking the brandy. In a 2019 article, space writer Jeffrey Kluger claimed that all three men (it is the only Apollo crew with all its members still alive) still have their unopened bottle of brandy…. (2) JP: COLLECT ‘EM ALL. [Item by James Bacon.] Journey Planet: Collector’s Edition is all about collectors, collections, and collecting! Our contributors share their treasure troves, which range from Prince records to...
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(1) THE DEAD BODY PROBLEM. Lin Qi, producer of the upcoming Three-Body Problem adaptation, has died following an alleged poisoning by a colleague:  “Lin Qi, Yoozoo CEO and Producer on Netflix’s ‘Three-Body Problem,’ Dies at 39” in The Hollywood Reporter. Lin Qi, the chairman and CEO of Yoozoo Group who was hospitalized after having been poisoned on Dec. 16, has died. The Chinese company confirmed that Lin died on Christmas Day. He was 39. On Wednesday evening in China, the Shanghai Public Security Bureau had announced that Lin was receiving treatment after being poisoned and that a Yoozoo coworker of Lin’s, surnamed Xu, had been apprehended amid an investigation. The statement read: “At 5 p.m. on Dec. 17, 2020, the police received a call from a hospital regarding a patient surnamed Lin. During the patient’s treatment, the hospital said it had determined that the patient had been poisoned. Following the call, the police began an investigation. According to investigations on site and further interviews, the police found that a suspect surnamed Xu, who is a coworker of the victim Lin, was the most likely the perpetrator. The suspect Xu has been arrested and investigations continue.” The Hollywood Reporter reported that local media have said a...
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The Science Fiction and Fantasy Rosetta Awards for works translated into English were unveiled today. The award will spotlight “the great but underrated efforts of translators and those who endeavor to make the translation works come true.” The juried award will have three categories: Long-form. 40K English words or above.Short-form. Under 40K words.A Special Service Award will be awarded to the author, editor, translator, activist or publisher who makes great contribution to promotion of non-English SFF internationally. Cheryl Morgan, first chair of the awards jury, says SFFRA came about this way: Earlier this year I was approached by the lovely people at the Future Affairs Administration in China. They were interested in starting up a new set of SF&F translation awards and they wanted me to be part of the jury. Gary Wolfe was also involved, and I still very much believe in having such awards, so I said yes. Morgan and Wolfe previously worked on the Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Awards last given in 2013. Some of the key eligibility requirements for the new SFFRA award are: Must be a translation from Non-English to English, and published either in print or electronically through publisher/magazine. The eligibility is based on...
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(1) JEMISIN’S LATEST MILESTONE. [Item by Rob Thornton.] N.K. Jemisin received an interesting present for Christmas when she learned that The City We Became was chosen as a Book Of The Month. (2) AWARDED SFF BY POC. [Item by Eric Wong.] Rocket Stack Rank’s  annual Outstanding SF/F by People of Color 2019, with 67 stories by 60 authors that were that were finalists for major SF/F awards, included in “year’s best” SF/F anthologies, or recommended by prolific reviewers in short fiction. Included are some observations obtained from highlighting specific recommenders and pivoting the table by publication, author, awards, year’s best anthologies, and reviewers. 44 are free online (highlighted in default view), 21 have podcasts.Among publications, Uncanny, Tor.com and Tor Novellas have the most here with 5 stories each (22% total).Among authors, Ted Chiang and E. Lily Yu each have 3 stories here, followed by Shweta Adhyam, Tobias S. Buckell, and Rivers Solomon with 2 each.Stories by People of Color make up 29% of SF/F awards finalists with 29 stories out of 99 award-finalist stories from the 2019 Best SF/F. Nine stories won awards in their respective categories.These stories did about the same, at 26%, among “year’s best” anthologies with 32 stories out of 122 anthology-included stories from the 2019 Best SF/F. Jonathan Strahan’s anthology has 12 stories listed here, followed by the Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy anthology (11).These stories did the worst, at 25%, among prolific reviewers with 26 stories out of 105...
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Still celebrating the holidays at my brother’s. Took my laptop along to worjk on today but it got fried en route somehow, won’t turn on but gets as hot as an iron. So a big placeholder today, and will resume tomorrow on my backup. Meantime, roll your own pixels in the comments! TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS. [Compiled by Cat Eldridge and John Hertz.] Mark Millar, born 1969, age fifty one years Comic book write whose resume is long at both house so I’ll like of his work. The Millar/Quitely era on The Authority was politically edged and often got censored by DC as it commented on the Iraq War — well worth your reading. His run on Swamp Thing from issues 142 to 171 has a lot of other writers including Morrison. He wrote the Ultimates at Marvels and a lot of that superb series ended in the Avengers film. Finally his excellent Civil War was the basis of the Captain America: Civil War film and his not to missed Old Man Logan was the inspiration for Fox’s Logan film. (CE) Diedrich Bader, born 1966, age fifty four years I know him best as the voice of Batman on The Batman and Batman: The Brave and the Bold. No, he’s not Kevin Conroy but his Batman is quite enjoyable and interesting in his...
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Note: A bit light today because I’m off helping celebrate my brother’s birthday. (1) OUT OF COURT. Mike Dunford of Questionable Authority makes some interesting comments on the decision against ComicMix (see “Dr. Seuss Enterprises Wins Appeal to Ninth Circuit; Seuss-Trek Mashup Violates Copyright”) and promises more on his next QuestAuthority at Twitch. Twitter thread starts here. (2) A SCAM, BUT WHY? At Writer Beware, Victoria Strauss warns that a “Spooky Phishing Scam Targets Traditionally-Published Writers”. …The phisher, or phishers, employ clever tactics like transposing letters in official-looking email addresses (like “penguinrandornhouse.com” instead of “penguinrandomhouse.com“) and masking the addresses so they only show when the recipient hits “Reply”. They know how publishing works and appear to have access to inside information, utilizing not just public sources like acquisition announcements in trade publications, but details that are harder to uncover: writers’ email addresses, their relationships with agents and editors, delivery and deadline dates, even details of the manuscripts themselves.  And they are ramping up their operations. According to the Times, the scam began appearing “at least” three years ago, but in the past year “the volume of these emails has exploded in the United States.” So what’s the endgame? Publishing people are stumped. Manuscripts...
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On December 23, 2020, the advance book review site NetGalley sent a message to its members informing them that the NetGalley login data for members had been compromised: Notification of Data Security Incident – December 23, 2020 Dear NetGalley Member, It is with great regret that we inform you that on Monday, December 21, 2020 NetGalley was the victim of a data security incident. What initially seemed like a simple defacement of our homepage has, with further investigation, resulted in the unauthorized and unlawful access to a backup file of the NetGalley database. It is with an abundance of caution that we wanted to let you know this incident may have exposed some of the information you have shared with NetGalley. The backup file that was impacted contained your Profile information, which includes your login name and password, name and email address. Also, if supplied by you, your mailing address, birthday, company name, and Kindle email address. We currently have no evidence of the exposure of any of this data, but we cannot at this stage rule out the possibility. We expect that you may have many additional questions – below are the questions we would have if we received this...
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Paul A. Moscarella Paul A. Moscarella has been an English, ESL, Special Education and science teacher for over 20 years both in NYC and Hamilton, Ontario. The author lives in Southern Ontario, Canada with his wife and son. Machinia, by Pandamonium Publishing House, is Paul’s debut novel. By Paul A. Moscarella: Machinia centers around robot rule as an inevitability. With machines increasingly reinforcing various parts of our lives, defining some arbitrary point where we limit their integration is no longer clear. Big corporate money is fueling the robot revolution, and we are all being swept up in their eventual assumption of power. Machinia does not depict the robot rule as something to fear, at least not overtly. Theirs is the governance of the superior, of the benevolent, so long as they have cooperation with the humans who coexist with them. To give a little background, I began developing the story premise for Machinia as a high school student back in 1985. My English teacher asked us to create a short story about future dystopian societies. I knew then that whatever world I created would have to include the presence of robots in a dominant role. In the story I submitted, a...
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