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Mar. 31st, 2014


As I Knew Him -- Related Work

As the subject line says, this is a recommendation for Best Related Work. It's As I Knew Him, written by Anne Serling. It's a biography of her father, Twilight Zone and Night Gallery creator Rod Serling. I guess the best way to describe it is to say that the Rod Serling she knew is quite different from the persona he presented on screen.

Mar. 26th, 2014



Yoon Ha Lee, "The Knight of Chains, The Deuce of Stars"

I'm terribly late on my reading, but been catching up on some 2013 short fiction this week thanks to a slow temp job. This Yoon Ha Lee story from the August 2013 issue of Lightspeed is one of the standouts so far;
Autumn Lady


For Your Consideration: GOBLIN FRUIT for Best Semiprozine Hugo 2014

Just a note to say that Goblin Fruit, an online quarterly dedicated to fantastical poetry, is eligible for nomination in the Best Semiprozine category.

PeachqueensmallGoblin Fruit has been a paying poetry market publishing 4 issues a year since 2006. To date it has put out 32 issues, published 481 poems, featured 14 artists (including the Hugo-winning Galen Dara),with contributors including Jane Yolen, Terri Windling, Catherynne M. Valente, Sonya Taaffe, Sofia Samatar, Seanan McGuire, and many more.

Last year's issues are as follow:

Winter 2013
Spring 2013
Summer 2013
Fall 2013

You can also peruse the entirety of the archives for free online to get a better sense of the zine.

Here are some recently compiled musings about eight years of Goblin Fruit. I hope you'll give it a try.

Mar. 25th, 2014



Best Dramatic Presentation-Long Form - Sundown: Whispers of Ragnarok

I’d like to recommend “Sundown: Whispers of Ragnarok” for Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form). Composed by Ada Palmer and performed by Sassafrass, “Sundown” is a song cycle inspired by the Norse legends of the birth of the world, the conflict between Odin and Loki, the murder of Baldur and the coming of Ragnarok. A two-hour version of the complete song cycle was performed for the first time (to a full ballroom and several standing ovations) last year at Balticon, and reprised at LoneStarCon.

Details, soundclips, and pictures at
Lego, Intergalactic Girl


1939 Retro Hugo Suggestions - Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form)

At memphismaniac's suggestion, I listened to "Speed Gibson of the International Secret Police", a classic juvenile adventure radio serial that aired from 1937 to 1940. It's entire run was written by Virginia Cooke.

What fun this was! Lot's of "golly, gee whizz" and amazing disguises - but also mind-reading devices and death rays. So if you are OK with categorizing the futuristic technology in "James Bond" or "Mission Impossible" as SF, then this certainly qualifies.

The episodes are very short, and I feel are really are best appreciated together rather than as individual episodes, so I will be nominating them in Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form) rather than Short Form.

In 1938 the First Adventure ended and the Second began, so I will be nominating "Speed Gibson" in two nomination slots in Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form):

  • Speed Gibson of the International Secret Police - The Case of The World Vs. The Octopus Episodes #45 - #100

  • Speed Gibson of the International Secret Police - The Atlantian Expedition Episodes #1 - #42
  • Edit: As "The Atlantian Expedition" continued into 1939, it's not eligible for the 1939 Retro Hugos

You can listen to the episodes in a number of places online, including here
And here is an excellent resource for airdate information


For your 2014 Hugo nomination consideration in the Dramatic Presentation--Short Form category

In addition to Doctor Who, BBC America has offered some damn good speculative fiction over the years. In 2013, it offered two excellent series that I hope Worldcon members who are eligible to nominate will consider adding to their ballots in the DP-SF category, Being Human and Orphan Black.

Can a vampire, werewolf and ghost live together without driving each other crazy? The writing of the UK version of Being Human has always been amazing. Despite the loss of the original cast trio, the creator, Toby Whithouse, pulled together another set of characters that had just as much depth and viewers were able to love them just as well. Tom was the tough werewolf who was always ready for a rumble with vampires when necessary, but very respectful of women. Hal, the aristocratic vampire, has to stick to a strict regimen to keep whatever humanity he still has intact. And then there is Alexandra, the feisty Scottish ghost, who still has yet to figure out what her unfinished business is.

The sad part is, this show was cancelled as quickly as it was renewed in 2012, so this is the last opportunity it has to be nominated. The series finale was completely unexpected, but totally awesome. My friends and I are hoping it will have the honor of making it on the short list this year while it still has the chance. Following are the episodes we're promoting for the ballot:

"Pie & Prejudice:" Tom looks to another werewolf for career guidance while Alex befriends another lady ghost from the 18th century; the lady ghost having been one of Hal's victims.

"The Greater Good:" Dominic Rook, who oversees the bureaucracy that cleans up after supernaturals, asks Hal and Tom to look after Bobby, a simple-minded werewolf under the department's care, while Rook goes to China to look for funding to save his job. In the meantime, Hal agrees to help Crumb regain some of his humanity by keeping him from killing.

"No Cares, All responsibility/The Last Broadcast:" This two-part episode makes the series finale. Tom meets a young woman he fancies, but she is also helping Hal manage his bloodlust. In the meantime, Alex suspects one of the guests at the hotel where Tom and Hal work has had something to do with all of the death surrounding the establishment. (Hal also does a deliciously creepy performance of "Putting on the Ritz.")

Orphan Black is a gripping Canadian production about a young woman who has been cloned several times to be used in an experiment. When they grow up, they begin to find each other as they travel around the world. The episodes are more serial than episodic; each relies on the ones preceding to fully understand what is going on, giving them a single story arc. For this reason, it is worth considering nominating the entire first season in the Long Form category; however, if single episodes are to be put on the nominating ballot, my friends and I suggest the following:

"Variations under Domestication:" Alison believes that her husband, Donny, has been monitoring her and tries torturing him for information, then realizes they were hosting a party that afternoon. She calls on Sarah for help. In the meantime, a new friend, Delphine, takes Cosima to a lecture on Neolution. (This episode has been nominated for an Edgar Award in the Best TV Episode Teleplay category. Although the series does have a strong mystery element, it's much more appropriate in science fiction.)

"Unconscious Selection:" Kira miraculously survives a car accident, which leads to another set of questions. After Alison goes out of control, her friends set up an intervention for her. Art learns the truth about Beth, while Sarah finds some answers about her birth. Cosima determines that Delphine is not who she seems to be.

The writing and acting for both the UK version of Being Human and Orphan Black have been compelling. For those who haven't seen them yet, both are available for no additional charge to anyone who has Amazon Prime and I'm sure other outlets have it as well. Please take a look and consider these shows. They are definitely worthy of Hugo nomination.

Don't forget, the deadline for nominating is 11:59 p.m. PDT on 31 March 2014. Online voting can be found at

Mar. 8th, 2014

Henry Lien

Henry Lien, "Pearl Rehabilitative Colony for Ungrateful Daughters"

I'm new here, so please go easy on me. I'm doing a selfie-posting about my novelette, which is eligible for the 2014 Hugo in the novelette category.

Title: "Pearl Rehabilitative Colony for Ungrateful Daughters"

Magazine: Asimov's

Issue: Dec. 2013 (cover story)

Link to Entire Story:

Logline: Two dueling teenage divas vie for top ranking in a sport combining kung fu and figure skating at a vicious cram school for talented but spoiled girls.

Additional information: This story was recently nominated for a Nebula in the novelette category. Here is a link to more information about the story, including reviews and a picture of the cover painting by acclaimed painter Alexandra Manukyan. I also just finished recording a podcast of me reading the story, which Asimov's will be publishing for free on their website. I will update this post with that link as soon as it becomes available.


Henry Lien

Mar. 9th, 2014



Elizabeth Leggett for FanArt nomination

There are some new faces to consider for this.  Here are the winners for the Jon Schindehette ArtOrder panel judged competition. Elizabeth's entries are on the third row.   Most of these names are familiar and wonderful, but there are a few new voices. Give a gander to the jury!

Here is the link to check it out...~smiles~

Mar. 22nd, 2014


1939 Retro Hugo Recommendation for Best Short Story -- "The Vanishing Diamonds" by Charles Tanner

Searching for short stories published in 1938 has been a bit of a chore for me, as several of those stories have never been reprinted. For the rest, let me say thank goodness for Interlibrary Loan. So it's always great when you can find stories for free on an online resource. Charles Tanner was part of the convention committe (in fact, he was the chairman) for the 7th World Science Fiction Convention (in Cincinnati, Ohio) held in 1949, and while his fiction output was not great, he did publish 16 short stories between 1930 and 1951. His grandson, Jeff Tanner, has made Charles Tanner's narrative works available for free on the Internet, with accompanying cover art and interior illustrations. "The Vanishing Diamonds" appeared in the June 1938 issue of Amazing Stories and is a good example of a short story that could also be used to teach basic concepts in chemistry.

Mar. 23rd, 2014

Lego, Intergalactic Girl


1939 Retro Hugo Suggestions

Over on the retrohugowomen community we've been unearthing many old gems. My personal favourites from the project are:

Short Stories
"With and Without Buttons" by Mary Butts (creepy, creepy ghost gloves)
"Between Two Worlds" by Mary Lutyens (shamelessly sentimental romance/ghost story)
"An Experiment of the Dead" by Helen Simpson (necromancer makes a foolish decision)

"Master of the Serpent Women" by Mary Dale Buckner (classic shudder horror story)
"Werewoman" by C L Moore (curse has unexpected benefits for local wildlife... ok that's not actually the message of the story but that's what I took from it!)

"Ego" (republished as "Anthem") by Ayn Rand (classic sf dystopia)

Professional Artist
Margaret Brundage (the quintessential Weird Tales cover artist, IMO)

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The Hugo Awards

November 2014




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