PENGUIN WARS

My post earlier has in part led to this penguin image thread on Tessa’s blog, Silence Without. The one I like the most thus far is Matt Stagg’s mullet penguin, reproduced above, but there are other great ones.

What to do on boring old Friday? I’ll tell you what to do–you send Tessa penguin images. You obliterate her inbox with them! It’s war, I tell you! (If you can’t post them somewhere yourself and post the link on her blog, send ‘em to her at sirtessa at optusnet dot com dot au).

Okay, silly? Sure. What’s wrong with silly?!?!?

Jeff

Amazon Blog: Strange Museums

I just blogged about The Museum Vaults, a great new book from NBM and the Louvre.

Before I visited the Louvre late last year I would have thought a graphic novel collaboration to perhaps be out of keeping with the museum’s image. But the Louvre, like any great museum, is really just an assortment of odd objects created by often eccentric craftspeople and geniuses organized by scientists in love with the past to look as if said objects are, in fact, quite normal. That is the charm and mystique of a museum, along with, especially in the most venerable institutions, their use of space and light–both of which are masterful in The Museum Vaults.

Weird Tales Guest Blogging Links

In celebration of of the first issue of Weird Tales with Ann VanderMeer as fiction editor, Ann invited the contributors to that first issue and subsequent issues to guest blog here in December and January. Below you’ll find all of those links–to wonderful posts from Norman Spinrad, Sarah Monette, Felix Gilman, Cat Rambo, actor/writer Michael Boatman, Paul Tremblay, and a host of new writers. Mark my words: you’ll be hearing a lot more from many of these newbies. They represent the next generation of fantasy, dark fantasy, and horror. One thing I know for sure about Ann as an editor: she has a great eye for new talent. When she was editing The Silver Web, she published some of the first stories by writers who now have major careers, including Daniel Abraham.

The latest Weird Tales should be on newsstands now. Check it out. This isn’t your grandpa’s Weird Tales–it’s something that should appeal both to new readers and those who grew up on WT’s reputation for tradition and quality. Ann’s let me read some of the stuff she’s taken, and I have to say it’s blown me away.

Print genre magazines have taken a lot of heat recently for being behind the times and not keeping up with what the next generation of readers want. But Weird Tales, by adding comics, by being open to a wider range of weird fiction, and in a dozen other ways, including the look-and-feel of the magazine, is adapting to the 21st century. Consider supporting it–right now you can get a subscription at a very reasonable price, which will include the 85th Anniversary Issue, featuring a new Elric novella by Michael Moorcock and my interview with China Mieville (among the best he’s done, I think–lots of fun). That 85th anniversary issue also includes a REMARKABLE debut: “Creature” by Ramsey Shehadeh. So you really can’t go wrong.

You’ll find all of the links below the cut.

NOTE: If you visited and the links didn’t work–they’re now fixed.

Jeff

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Beneath the Planet of the Apes

I first saw what I thought was Planet of the Apes in 1974 in Singapore–a French dub with some kind of Asian subtitles. It was the strangest experience of my life. And now having seen Planet of the Apes and Beneath the Planet of the Apes, I now realize what I saw must have been the third or fourth installment…because I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen these first two before. The first Planet was pretty interesting fare–cheesy in places, but with some nice cinematography and twists to the plot.

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Wha…?

Overheard from TV while writing…

“Getting old is tough enough as it is, but you might also find your bones being stolen while you sleep…”

What the f—?! No one’s stealing my bones while I’m asleep. Of course, it turned out to be some ad for a calcium supplement, but sounded like a teaser for a horror movie…

Book Covers

I’m curious about the kinds of assumptions readers make about books based on their covers. So, with the following samples:

(1) Who do you think is the target audience?
(2) What genre or subgenre do you think the book belongs to?
(3) Would you be comfortable being seen reading this book in the subway, in terms of what you think it tells people about your reading tastes?

Yep, this is totally unscientific. You can also comment anonymously if that helps you be more frank. Remember, we’re saying nothing about the quality of the book in question, and no cheating by looking these titles up on the intertubes!

Jeff

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Time Management

I had a bit of a panic attack earlier this week, brought on, I think, by two things: (1) not taking enough time off after doing the Predator novel and (2) having a lot of deadlines between now and April 2nd. The first meant I hadn’t recharged creatively after having completed a task I had never ever done before: completing a novel in two months. The second meant that I froze up and couldn’t get anything done. I’d forgotten my cardinal rules since I became a freelancer: look only at the work in front of you; have a detailed timeline for completion of all tasks; don’t try to fit too much into any one day; jettison or postpone the less important deadlines; and always watch Homicide: Life on the Streets from 12-1pm to chill out. :)

Having now remembered all of these rules, just note that if you’re waiting to hear from me on something, there will most likely be more of a delay than usual in terms of my response. I’ll get to you within a couple of days of when I said I would, though.

Also…I can’t take on any more requests for blurbs for books. I am always looking for freelance work, especially past mid-April, but I can’t do any more blurbing for awhile.

Blogging is actually fun for me, so I’ll continue to do it regularly–I really appreciate having so many fun, clever people commenting, too. Helps take the edge off.

Jeff

Penguin: How Information Spreads Via Intertube

So…how did we get here? How did we get to the point of a vampiric-looking penguin calling me out?

It’s very simple, really. I saw this image, and commented on it in the comments section of this post. Soon, I received the abuse above. Merry Wednesday!