One of my favorite Gmail functions, web clips enable me to watch headlines from selected blogs as banner ads across the top of my inbox. Every time I change screens, a new headline appears. I can even scroll through the various headlines. The only downside is that some actual commercial ads are mixed in but those are far and few between and very unobtrusive. The service comes with several preloaded headline makers– primarily news, sports, and technology sites. Those can be edited out just as you are able to add new ones in.
The following blogs are in my web clips:
- Alan J. Porter’s LiveJournal— Alan is a friend, a fellow RevSF editor, and a damn fine writer. He’s written two books: Before They Were Beatles: The Early Years 1956-1960 and The Unauthorized Batman Collector’s Guide. His site is a good source of comics criticism and gossip.
- Bill Crider’s Pop Culture Magazine— The author of at least 45 books, Crider has not only written it all– mystery, thrillers, horror, young adult, westerns, novels, short stories, and comics– but he is a pop culture maven, especially as it refers to crime fiction, Texas, and movie nostalgia. His blog continually amazes and entertains.
- Bowing to the Future— I knew Lou Anders before he was the Pyr editor when he had produced a handful books on pop culture about Dr. Who and Star Trek plus edited his Book Face anthology, Outside the Box. Then as now, Lou is an insightful critic with a good eye for talent.
- Finn’s Wake— Mark and I go way back. We emerged from the comic book trenches together. One of the wittiest people I know, sadly Mark’s blog productivity has been severely curtailed ever since him and his wife assumed ownership of an old movie theater in Vernon, TX. Mark’s biography of Robert E. Howard, Blood & Thunder, was nominated for the World Fantasy Award.
- Mark’s Peat Blog: Excavations from the Writing Life— I go way back with this Mark as well. (When I speak of Mark(s), Brandy always insists that I clarify. “Use last names,” she complains.) Mark produces the entertaining and popular young adult Danger Boy series as well as writes regularly for the Hollywood rag, Below the Line. Like Finn, he doesn’t blog enough. What’s up with these Marks?
- Roberson’s Interminable Ramble— Chris is one of the smartest writers I know and not just because he published Geek Confidential. He’s interested in a wide range of topics and subjects, and hence blogs about damn near anything especially on pop culture issues. I think the only subject we’ve never discussed is sports.
- Sabernomics— Really the only way I can stand economics is when it deals with baseball. I’m like that with other things. I can figure out batting averages and winning percentages, but have trouble with algebra. I can explain the effects of a curveball or slider, but I don’t understand physics. It helps that J.C Bradbury, author of The Baseball Economist, writes clearly without much technical lingo and frames everything within the context of the game.
- The Swivet— Maintained by “La Gringa” (one of the blogosphere’s worst kept secret identities), The Swivet functions as information site for sf fans and really whatever tickles La Gringa’s fancy at the time. Luckily, it’s usually humorous and always entertaining.
These are not the only blogs I visit, just the ones in my web clips. Perhaps later, I’ll reveal some of my other favorites.