It’s February, which means snow, long days that are slowly getting shorter, and zines. So many zines. For the last three years, Kickstarter promoted ZineQuest, a celebration, and promotion of print and PDF zines for role-playing games. This year, Kickstarter moved ZineQuest to August to coincide with GenCon. That left a vacuum in February, which … Read more
The Unspeakable Oath is conducting a subscription drive. The goal of the drive is to get some cash into the magazine’s coffers so they can continue publishing their ode to Call of Cthulhu and Lovecraftian gaming. The drive is organized into tiers; at 150 subscribers folks get the Delta Green short story “Down on the … Read more
John Scalzi’s new novel set in the Old Man’s War universe is going to be serialized starting in January 2013. Called The Human Division, the book will be weekly between January 15 and April 9. The 13 part series will be available electronically through Amazon.com, Apple, and Barnes & Noble. It looks like each story … Read more
Masks: 1,000 Memorable NPCs for Any Roleplaying Game is a fire hose of inspiration aimed directly at your brain. It’s a massive collection of non-player characters for the fantasy, science fiction, and modern genres designed to make the game master’s life easier.
Super powers have been spawned by almost every element known to man (and plenty that aren’t) so it only makes sense that they should be transformed into a periodic table of their own. The Periodic Table Of Super-Powers is a handy chart that breaks down superhero backgrounds by origin, physical powers, and mental powers. It’s … Read more
Halo fans have a new novel through which to explore the video game’s continuum. Halo: The Cole Protocol by Tobias Buckell. The new book chronicles humanity’s desperate quest to erase any and all navigational data that could lead the fundamentalist (and xenocidal) Covenant to Earth. The action takes place in an immense asteroid field near … Read more
In this old article (as in 1998) Tim O’Reilly provides a rundown of his favorite science fiction novels, including Dune, Stranger in a Strange Land, Snowcrash, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress and The Stars are Ours.
He prefaces this list by discussing the book The Meaning of Culture by John Cowper Powys and draws the conclusion “a truly cultured person appreciates what has really shaped his world view, and uses literature and the arts as a tool to get more out of life.” He then provides the list as examples of science fiction literature that shaped his world view.
What’s missing from this article is the critical other half that explains how these books informed his world view. It’s all well and good to say that The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, but how did a novel about libertarian lunar revolution inform his world view? Was it an appreciation for the merits of a free market economy? The insidious effectiveness of revolutionary cells working in isolation from one another? Group marriages? We don’t know because he doesn’t say.
My good friend (and geeky partner-in-crime at Knights of the Dinner Table) Mur Lafferty launched her the print edition of her superhero novel Playing for Keeps today. Go buy the book. Initially released as a podcast, Playing For Keeps tells the story of Keepsie, a bartender with third-rate superhero powers that kept her out of … Read more
GoodReads is a social networking site for readers, allowing users to add their book collections to online bookshelves and then share those collections with friends. Books can be stored on different book shelves, rated, and reviewed. You can compare your collection to that of a friends, with the site giving you a side-by-side comparison of … Read more
The book review web site and blog Emerald City is ceasing publication. I’m sad to see it go — the site featured a wide range of speculative fiction web reviews, and its blog was a useful way to stay up on the scifi literary scene.