A Bunch of White Guys, or The Hugo Awards

It isn’t a surprise to anyone that I am not the biggest fan of that literary ghetto of a genre, science fiction/fantasy. Despite publisher attempts to rescue books from that dreaded pit by re-labeling them speculative fiction, it remains a genre that has become a shorthand for basement-dwelling, mouth-breathing virgins. Not that all readers of…

Goodbye, Sir Terry, and Thank You

I am grateful that there are so many Discworld novels to read, and that we have them at all. That any book’s birth is a combination of luck, talent and timing, and to have so many is wealth indeed. It’s hard not to mourn the books that will now go unwritten, but at least we can turn to dozens and dozens of novels and be glad that those books live now.

Quick Fix: A Writing Submission Gone Horribly Wrong

Far be it from me to piss on the writing parade of someone who likes to scribble cowboy fiction. After all, I suppose it has its place, much like bric-a-brac in the glorious, universe-spanning world of literature. While undoubtedly a genre that pretty much reinforces every heterosexual norm you can think of (the manly man…

The Hobbit HFR 3D Review

So, I was fortunate enough to get a preview ticket to see The Hobbit in very sexy HFR 3D. This luxurious new 3D format actually delivers what it promises: increased depth (which sometimes creates a weird soap opera feel) and no more blurriness. Thankfully, it is also much, much easier on the eyes. I was pleased that…

Tony Blair, A Journey and the Armchair Activists

Despite the fact that Fifty Shades of Grey is basically a handguide to how abusive relationships start, and that Game of Thrones is an airbrushed Medieval Europe where feminism and civil rights are things that happen to other books, I would never call for these books to be banned or burnt. You’d think this would…

JK Rowling, Pottermore and the Future

As far as moments in publishing go, the launch of Pottermore is massive. But what makes it momentous is that, for the first time in contemporary publishing, an author has dictated to the biggest names in book-retailing. To put not too fine a point on them, she has told Amazon, Apple and Barnes and Noble exactly where…

Why the Anti-SOPA Movement Matters

I have said before that I am a supporter of Anonymous and all their crazy folks, and today is a good day for a display of fierce, lively internet democracy. The internet is the only true democracy on the planet, since no one rules it other than its own members, and where everyone has a place to say what…

McDonald’s and Michael Morpurgo

It has been announced that author Michael Morpurgo has authorised the distribution of nine million copies of Mossop’s Last Chance and Martians at Mudpuddle Farm with McDonald’s Happy Meals. Finger puppets will be included as well, which is kind of fun. Of course, there will always be detractors for everything, especially if McDonald’s is involved. The National Literacy Trust is supportive of this campaign due…