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Out of the Woodwork 161. February 2010
Fantastic Literature - setting the standards for out of print on-line bookselling.

Welcome to our newsletter, it contains up to the minute news and gossip as well as awards details and items requiring help from the collective consciousness. If you wish to contribute please do so! We welcome your thoughts, your news items and any gossip! We do love a bit of gossip here at Fantastic HQ.


Tartarus Press win HWA award - well done to the guys at Tartarus!
Collective nouns for authors - we started a bit of a canter in the last booklist - have you any further ides?
Neil Gaiman is getting married - to whom? with the official picture, it's Valentine's Day after all and news of a Gaiman Dr Who!
HWA Lifetime Achievement Award goes to - Brian Lumley & William F Nolan
Avatar wins a couple of Golden Globes - no sexist Sigourney Weaver jokes please! District 9 and Moon also in the hunt for Baftas
Philip K Dick award nominees - a goodly selection of quality stories
Twilight - now it's the graphic novel.
Crime writing competition - we've got the details
Adam Crozier - the boss of Royal Mail to take over ITV - what will that mean for ITV?
Nebula Awards location announced - with a space shuttle launch thrown in as well - anyone fancy a weekend away?
Killer Robots - the future has arrived, so let's just sit back and wait for skynet!
Dr Who wins two TV awards - full story plus video clip
1970's authors get a chance at a Booker Prize - the long list includes Brian Aldiis, Patrick O'Brien, Reginald Hill and Len Deighton
Jonathan Ross - starts new career writing graphic novels.
Danny Boyle to direct a National Theatre production of Frankenstein - wow!
Avatar gets pulled in China - various sources claim conspiracy!
The Stoker awards - 2009 preliminary ballot
The EDGAR nominees for 2010 - some great authors represented here, includes the awesome "Lost Child" by John Hart
Stieg Larsson - man of mystery, best selling novelist but he died in 2004, we just devoured the books here!
Prometheus Hall of Fame Award - finalists announced - a few old favourites in here as well
A newly discovered fossil has shed light on why a group of dinosaurs looks like birds
Actor Dave Prowse, who starred as Darth Vader in the original Star Wars films, is in remission from prostate cancer
The Aurealis Awards - The winners were announced at the thirteenth annual Aurealis Awards ceremony in Brisbane 24th January
The BSFA Award nominations for 2010 - The Awards will be presented at this year’s Eastercon, Odyssey
Jedediah Berry has been named the winner of the 2010 William L. Crawford Award for first novel
Hammer Films to adapt and producer Susan Hill’s bestselling ghost story - The Woman in Black
Doctor Who props and costumes up for auction - what would you bid for a Dalek?
Full Moon Press - faces its eclipse! Some clients may lose $4,000.
The Amazon model of selling e-books for $9.99 is being challenged by publishers, who are setting tiered pricing for digital books.
So which authors were the most borrowed from public libraries? - we've got the details
Obituaries. Japanese author, translator, and fan Takumi Shibano. Poltergeist actress Zelda Rubinstein. American novelist JD Salinger. Kage Baker SF author. David Brown, the producer behind hit films including Jaws and The Sting. Donald Pickering, who played three characters in Dr Who. John McCallum - he created the wondrous "Skippy - the Bush Kangaroo". Philip Klass who as William Tenn wrote a number of very good satirical sf stories.
Department of Smug Self Satisfaction - our monthly look at what our kind customers have to say about Fantastic Literature Ltd

External Blinks:

BSCreview interviews Charlie Huston
Paul Di Filippo reviews Kim Stanley Robinson's Galileo's Dream
Daily Telegraph's Peter Ingham reviews four science fiction novels, including Gardens of the Sun by Paul McAuley, and The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart by Jesse Bullington.
2009 Locus - recommended reading list
Solomon Kane - Howard's anti hero comes to life - movie trailer

HWA Specialty Press Award Goes to Tartarus Press
Tartarus Press, of North Yorkshire, England, will receive the Horror Writers Association’s Specialty Press Award for 2009. The award will be presented during the Bram Stoker Awards Banquet at the World Horror Convention, to be held this year in Brighton, England, March 25-28. Ray Russell and Rosalie Parker’s Tartarus Press specializes in weird, ghostly, and gothic fiction ranging from reprints of obscure but notable novellas and novels to single-author collections of classics and brand new collections by contemporary writers.

Collective nouns for authors. In the last booklist I joked about some collective nouns for authors. I said I'd a "coven" of Campbells and a "host" of Harrisons, this started some thinking. Phil came up with a "bedlam" of Blochs and Hugh Christian-Carter - wrote "Thanks for the List, although sadly there is nothing of interest to me this time. However – for your Collective Nouns series, how about : A Tautology of Moorcocks ? Can you think of any more?

Author Neil Gaiman has announced his engagement to singer-songwriter Amanda Palmer. aaah! (New Yorker profiles his fantasies as well) also news just in that Neil Gaiman is to write a forthcoming episode of Doctor Who. Gaiman, the author of Stardust and Coraline which were both adapted for the big screen, revealed the news at a sci-fi convention in Sussex. The episode, with the working title of The House of Nothing, will air in 2011, the writer said BBC story

The Horror Writers Association has chosen two long-time icons of the genre to receive the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award this year. The award, given for an author’s overall body of work, will go to Brian Lumley and to William F. Nolan.

Brian Lumley's first short story collection, The Caller of the Black, was published by Arkham House in 1971. Lumley went on to garner followers around the world for his series of Necroscope novels, which began in 1986. He has published dozens of short stories, including many in the Cthulhu Mythos begun by H. P. Lovecraft, and he is also the author of the popular "Titus Crow" and "Psychomech" stories. His books have been published in both mass market and small press limited editions, and his early titles command high prices in the collector's market. He is the subject of 2002's The Brian Lumley Companion (co-written with Stanley Wiater), and his most recent release is Harry and the Pirates: And Other Tales from the Lost Years (Tor, 2009). Lumley is a former President of the Horror Writers Association.

William F. Nolan is a true Renaissance man of literature, having written science fiction (including the immensely popular Logan's Run series, the first volume of which was co-written with George Clayton Johnson), mysteries, screenplays, and non-fiction, but some of his most outstanding work as an editor and short fiction author has been in the horror genre. His 1984 collection Things Beyond Midnight was first published by Scream Press (and since been reprinted by Babbage Press), and in 2003 Leisure Books published Dark Universe. As a screenwriter, Nolan co-wrote the legendary television film Trilogy of Terror, a highly-regarded adaptation of The Turn of the Screw (ABC, 1974), and 1976's Burnt Offerings. In 2002, he was voted a "Living Legend in Dark Fantasy" by the International Horror Guild, and in 2006 he was named Author Emeritus by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. Nolan most recently served as editor on the anthology The Bleeding Edge.

Blockbuster sf epic Avatar has been named best film drama at the Golden Globe awards, boosting its chances of further glory at the Oscars in March. Its director James Cameron was also honoured at the event, held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles James Cameron said "This is the best job in the world," as Avatar was named best film. "What we do is make entertainment for a global audience. Avatar is also up for eight Baftas, whilst District 9 has been nominated for seven and the quite brilliant "Moon" in two.."Full BBC story and Independent list of all nominations. (PS - in case you didn't know Avatar became the biggest selling film of all time with receipts of $1.859bn (£1.15bn) and rising! That fact though this isn't inflation linked and not about "bums on seats" the top "bums on seats" film of all time is "Gone with the Wind" - Avatar is 6th on that list - I know I should get out more!)

The 2009 Philip K. Dick Award nominees have been announced:

Bitter Angels, C.L. Anderson (Ballantine Spectra)
The Prisoner, Carlos J. Cortes (Ballantine Spectra)
The Repossession Mambo, Eric Garcia (Harper)
The Devil’s Alphabet, Daryl Gregory (Del Rey)
Cyberabad Days, Ian McDonald (Pyr)
Centuries Ago and Very Fast, Rebecca Ore (Aqueduct Press)
Prophets, S. Andrew Swann (DAW)

The Awards are presented annually to a distinguished work of science fiction published in paperback original form in the United States. The winner and any special citations will be announced April 2, 2010 at Norwescon 33 in SeaTac WA. PK Dick Award

Stephenie Meyer's popular vampire book series Twilight is to be released as a graphic novel, it has been announced. Twilight: The Graphic Novel will contain selected text from Meyer's original novel with illustrations by Korean artist Young Kim. "The characters and settings are very close to what I was imagining while writing the series," Meyer said. The book will be divided into two parts and the first edition is scheduled to be released on 16 March. BBC story

Do you fancy becoming the next Stuart MacBride, Raymond Chandler, Agatha Christie or Dashiell Hammett? Do you have the next great gumshoe detective or amateur sleuth character under wraps and just need an opportunity to tell the world? Now's your chance. Alibi has teamed up with world-renowned publisher HarperCollins and Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, Harrogate to unearth some of the country's hottest new crime-writing talent and we're starting by asking you to submit your very own crime fiction short story. Full details

ITV has announced that Royal Mail boss Adam Crozier is to become the broadcaster's new chief executive. Does that mean that there will be no programmes on Sunday and that programmes will be delayed due to the weather or lost in sorting offices? Will news readers wear shorts whatever the weather? Answers on a postcard - that may or may not arrive!

The Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America will hold the Nebula Awards Weekend May 13-16, 2010, in Coco Beach FL, on Cape Canaveral. The 2009 Nebula Awards will be presented that weekend, along with other SFWA awards, including the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master award for Joe Haldeman. The dates were chosen to coincide with the scheduled launching of the shuttle Atlantis on May 14, 2010. The launch will be visible from the beach outside the hotel, and special tours of the Kennedy Space Center will be available. For more information, visit the Nebula Awards website. (Sounds lovely doesn't it!)

Killer Robots: In the dark, in the silence, in a blink, the age of the autonomous killer robot has arrived. It is happening. They are deployed. And – at their current rate of acceleration – they will become the dominant method of war for rich countries in the 21st century. These facts sound, at first, preposterous. The idea of machines that are designed to whirr out into the world and make their own decisions to kill is an old sci-fi fantasy: picture a mechanical Arnold Schwarzenegger blasting a truck and muttering: "Hasta la vista, baby." But we live in a world of such whooshing technological transformation that the concept has leaped in just five years from the cinema screen to the battlefield – with barely anyone back home noticing. Johann Hari - Independent story

BBC One's Doctor Who has scooped two awards at the National TV Awards in London, including best drama for the fifth year in a row.David Tennant, who has now quit as the Doctor, left the show on a high by winning outstanding drama performance. BBC story and video clip

Authors who had books published in 1970 have been given a second chance to win the Booker Prize.

Lost Man Booker Prize longlist

Brian Aldiss, The Hand Reared Boy
HE Bates, A Little Of What You Fancy?
Nina Bawden, The Birds On The Trees
Melvyn Bragg, A Place In England
Christy Brown, Down All The Days
Len Deighton, Bomber
JG Farrell, Troubles
Elaine Feinstein, The Circle
Shirley Hazzard, The Bay Of Noon
Reginald Hill, A Clubbable Woman
Susan Hill, I'm The King Of The Castle
Francis King, A Domestic Animal
Margaret Laurence, The Fire Dwellers
David Lodge, Out Of The Shelter
Iris Murdoch, A Fairly Honourable Defeat
Shiva Naipaul, Fireflies
Patrick O'Brian, Master and Commander
Joe Orton, Head To Toe
Mary Renault, Fire From Heaven
Ruth Rendell, A Guilty Thing Surprised
Muriel Spark, The Driver's Seat
Patrick White, The Vivisector

BBC story

Jonathan Ross to start writing graphic novels: he may have quit the BBC earlier this month but a new profession is beckoning for the television presenter as he prepares to make his comic-writing debut in April. Ross's comic, Turf, is set in Prohibition-era New York. It will tell the story of a gang war between booze-smuggling mobsters and vampires – the bloodthirsty Dragonmir family from eastern Europe – with an alien thrown in for good measure. Written by Ross and illustrated by American comics artist Tommy Lee Edwards, publisher Image Comics said it would offer "a twist on the hardboiled crime thriller", pitching it as "crime noir with bite". (Guardian)

Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle is to make his National Theatre debut directing a new production of Frankenstein. The Slumdog Millionaire director will tackle Nick Dear's play, based on the novel by Mary Shelley, as part of the London theatre's winter season. It is a return to the stage for Boyle who started his career in the theatre. BBC story

China has pulled the 2D version of Avatar from cinemas amid claims the plot mirrors forced land evictions in the country. Authorities insist the decision was a commercial one, saying the 3D version made up two-thirds of ticket revenues. Critics claim the film's plot parallels the removal of millions of residents to make way for property developers. The 3D version hasn't been pulled which makes it a bit of a non story if you ask us. BBC story

The 2009 Stoker Awards Preliminary Ballot has been released:

Superior Achievement in a Novel

As Fate Would Have It, Michael Louis Calvillo (Bad Moon)
Sacrifice, John Everson (Leisure)
Eternal Vigilance II: Death of Illusions, Gabrielle Faust (Immanion)
Twisted Ladder, Rhodi Hawk (Tor)
Voracious, Alice Henderson (Jove)
The Bone Factory, Nate Kenyon (Leisure)
Audrey's Door, Sarah Langan (Harper)
Patient Zero, Jonathan Maberry (St. Martin's Griffin)
Quarantined, Joe McKinney (Lachesis)
Cursed, Jeremy Shipp (Raw Dog Screaming Press)

Superior Achievement in a First Novel

The Black Act, Louise Bohmer (Library of Horror)
Breathers, S. G. Browne (Broadway Books)
Slaughter!, Marcus Griffin (Alexandrian Archives)
The Dead Path, Stephen M. Irwin (Hachette Australia)
Solomon’s Grave, Daniel G. Keohane (Dragon Moon Press)
Dismember, Daniel Pyle (Wild Child)
The Forest of Hands and Teeth, Carrie Ryan (Delacorte
Damnable, Hank Schwaeble (Jove)
The Little Sleep, Paul Tremblay (Henry Holt)
Slights, Kaaron Warren (Angry Robot)

Superior Achievement in Long Fiction

Dreaming Robot Monster, Mort Castle (Mighty Unclean)
The Hunger of Empty Vessels, Scott Edelman (Bad Moon)
Rot, Michelle Lee (Skullvines)
The Gray Zone, John R. Little (Bad Moon)
"Diana and the Goong-Si", Lisa Morton (Midnight Walk)
The Lucid Dreaming, Lisa Morton (Bad Moon)
Black Butterflies, Kurt Newton (Sideshow)
Doc Good's Traveling Show, Gene O’Neill (Bad Moon)
Little Graveyard on the Prairie, Steven E. Wedel (Bad Moon)
Mama Fish, Rio Youers (Shroud)

Superior Achievement in Short Fiction

"Nub Hut", Kurt Dinan (Chizine 1/09)
"One More Day", Brian Freeman (Shivers V)
"Where Sunlight Sleeps", Brian Freeman (Horror Drive-In 4/16/09)
"Blanket of White", Amy Grech (Blanket of White)
"Keeping Watch", Nate Kenyon (Monstrous: 20 Tales of Giant Creature Terror)
"Plague Dogs", Joe McKinney (Potters Field 3)
"The Crossing of Aldo Ray", Weston Ochse (The Dead That Walk)
"The Outlaws of Hill County", John Palisano (Harvest Hill)
"In the Porches of My Ears", Norman Prentiss (Postscripts 18)
"The Night Nurse", Harry Shannon (Horror Drive-In 7/15/09)

Superior Achievement in an Anthology

Harlan County Horrors, Mari Adkins, ed. (Apex)
He Is Legend: An Anthology Celebrating Richard Matheson, Christopher Conlon, ed. (Gauntlet)
Mighty Unclean, Bill Breedlove, ed. (Dark Arts)
Lovecraft Unbound, Ellen Datlow, ed. (Dark Horse)
Poe, Ellen Datlow, ed. (Solaris)
Dark Delicacies 3: Haunted, Del Howison & Jeff Gelb, eds. (Running Press)
Butcher Shop Quartet 2, Frank J. Hutton, ed. (Cutting Block)
British Invasion, Chris Golden, Tim Lebbon & James Moore, eds. (Cemetery Dance)
Midnight Walk, Lisa Morton, ed. (Dark House)
Grants Pass, Amanda Pillar & Jennifer Brozek, eds. (Morrigan)

Superior Achievement in a Fiction Collection

Shards, Shane Jiraiya Cummings (Brimstone)
Martyrs and Monsters, Robert Dunbar (DarkHart)
Dark Entities, David Dunwoody (Dark Regions)
Got to Kill Them All and Other Stories, Dennis Etchison (Cemetery Dance)
Shades of Blood and Shadow, Angeline Hawkes (Dark Regions)
Unhappy Endings, Brian Keene (Delirium)
You Might Sleep..., Nick Mamatas (Prime)
A Little Help from my Fiends, Michael McCarty (Sam's Dot)
A Taste of Tenderloin, Gene O'Neill (Apex)
In the Closet, Under the Bed, Lee Thomas (Dark Scribe)

Superior Achievement in Non-fiction

Writers Workshop of Horror, Michael Knost (Woodland)
Esoteria-Land, Michael McCarty (BearManor Media)
Morbid Curiosity Cures the Blues, Loren Rhoads, ed. (Simon & Schuster)
Cinema Knife Fight, L.L. Soares & Michael Arruda (Fearzone)
The Stephen King Illustrated Companion, Bev Vincent (Fall River)
Stephen King: The Non-Fiction, Rocky Wood & Justin Brook (Cemetery Dance)

Superior Achievement in a Poetry Collection

Double Visions, Bruce Boston (Dark Regions)
North Left of Earth, Bruce Boston (Sam's Dot)
Mortician's Tea, G. O. Clark (Sam's Dot)
Starkweather Dreams, Christopher Conlon (Creative Guy Publishing)
Voices from the Dark, Gary William Crawford (Dark Regions)
Barfodder, Rain Graves (Cemetery Dance)
Grave Bits, Todd Hanks (Skullvines)
Toward Absolute Zero, Karen L. Newman (Sam's Dot)
Chimeric Machines, Lucy A. Snyder (Creative Guy)

Horror Writers Association members will vote to choose final nominees from this list, and then vote again to determine winners. Winning titles will be announced at the World Horror Convention, March 25-28 2010, in Brighton, England. HWA

Mystery Writers of America is proud to announce on the 201st anniversary of the birth of Edgar Allan Poe, its Nominees for the 2010 Edgar Allan Poe Awards, honoring the best in mystery fiction, non-fiction and television published or produced in 2009. The Edgar® Awards will be presented to the winners at our 64th Gala Banquet, April 29, 2010 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, New York City. MWA
The Missing by Tim Gautreaux (Random House - Alfred A. Knopf)
The Odds by Kathleen George (Minotaur Books)
The Last Child by John Hart (Minotaur Books)
Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death by Charlie Huston (Random House - Ballantine Books)
Nemesis by Jo Nesbø, translated by Don Bartlett (HarperCollins)
A Beautiful Place to Die by Malla Nunn (Simon & Schuster – Atria Books)


The Girl She Used to Be by David Cristofano (Grand Central Publishing)
Starvation Lake by Bryan Gruley (Simon & Schuster - Touchstone)
The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf (MIRA Books)
A Bad Day for Sorry by Sophie Littlefield (Minotaur Books – Thomas Dunne Books)
Black Water Rising by Attica Locke (HarperCollins)
In the Shadow of Gotham by Stefanie Pintoff (Minotaur Books)

Bury Me Deep by Megan Abbott (Simon & Schuster) Havana Lunar by Robert Arellano (Akashic Books) The Lord God Bird by Russell Hill (Pleasure Boat Studio – Caravel Books) Body Blows by Marc Strange (Dundurn Press – Castle Street Mysteries) The Herring-Seller’s Apprentice by L.C. Tyler (Felony & Mayhem Press)

Columbine by Dave Cullen (Hachette Book Group - Twelve)
Go Down Together: The True, Untold Story of Bonnie and Clyde
by Jeff Guinn (Simon & Schuster)
The Fence: A Police Cover-Up Along Boston’s Racial Divide
by Dick Lehr (HarperCollins)
Provenance: How a Con Man and a Forger Rewrote the History of Modern Art
by Laney Salisbury and Aly Sujo (The Penguin Press)
Vanished Smile: The Mysterious Theft of Mona Lisa by R.A. Scotti
(Random House - Alfred A. Knopf)

Talking About Detective Fiction by P.D. James (Random House - Alfred A. Knopf)
The Lineup: The World’s Greatest Crime Writers Tell the Inside Story of Their Greatest Detectives edited by Otto Penzler (Hachette Book Group – Little, Brown and Company)
Haunted Heart: The Life and Times of Stephen King
by Lisa Rogak (Thomas Dunne Books)
The Talented Miss Highsmith: The Secret Life and Serious Art of Patricia Highsmith
by Joan Schenkar (St. Martin’s Press)
The Stephen King Illustrated Companion
by Bev Vincent (Fall River Press)

"Last Fair Deal Gone Down" – Crossroad Blues by Ace Atkins (Busted Flush Press)
"Femme Sole" – Boston Noir by Dana Cameron (Akashic Books)
"Digby, Attorney at Law" – Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine by Jim Fusilli (Dell Magazines)
"Animal Rescue" – Boston Noir by Dennis Lehane (Akashic Books
"Amapola" – Phoenix Noir by Luis Alberto Urrea (Akashic Books)

The Case of the Case of Mistaken Identity by Mac Barnett
(Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers) The Red Blazer Girls: The Ring of Rocamadour by Michael D. Beil
(Random House Children’s Books – Alfred A. Knopf) Closed for the Season by Mary Downing Hahn (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s Books) Creepy Crawly Crime by Aaron Reynolds (Henry Holt Books for Young Readers) The Case of the Cryptic Crinoline by Nancy Springer
(Penguin Young Readers Group – Philomel Books)

Reality Check by Peter Abrahams (HarperCollins Children’s Books – HarperTeen)
If the Witness Lied by Caroline B. Cooney (Random House Children’s Books – Delacorte Press)
The Morgue and Me by John C. Ford (Penguin Young Readers Group – Viking Children’s Books)
Petronella Saves Nearly Everyone by Dene Low (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s Books)
Shadowed Summer by Saundra Mitchell (Random House Children’s Books – Delacorte Press)

“Place of Execution,” Teleplay by Patrick Harbinson (PBS/WGBH Boston)
“Strike Three” – The Closer, Teleplay by Steven Kane (Warner Bros TV for TNT)
“Look What He Dug Up This Time” – Damages, Teleplay by Todd A. Kessler, Glenn Kessler & Daniel Zelman (FX Networks)
“Grilled” – Breaking Bad, Teleplay by George Mastras (AMC/Sony)
“Living the Dream” – Dexter, Teleplay by Clyde Phillips (Showtime)

"A Dreadful Day" – Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine by Dan Warthman (Dell Magazines)

GRAND MASTER Dorothy Gilman

Mystery Lovers Bookshop, Oakmont, Pennsylvania
Zev Buffman, International Mystery Writers’ Festival

Poisoned Pen Press (Barbara Peters & Robert Rosenwald)

(Presented at MWA’s Agents & Editors Party on Wednesday, April 28, 2010)
Awakening by S.J. Bolton (Minotaur Books)
Cat Sitter on a Hot Tin Roof by Blaize Clement (Minotaur Books)
Never Tell a Lie by Hallie Ephron (HarperCollins – William Morrow)
Lethal Vintage by Nadia Gordon (Chronicle Books)
Dial H for Hitchcock by Susan Kandel (HarperCollins)

Stieg Larsson. Having sold 25 million copies of his Millennium trilogy, been named the biggest author in Europe and with a movie adaptation due out in the US and UK, 2010 is a big year for Stieg Larsson. Or it would be if he hadn't died suddenly in 2004, before any of his books were published. We were bowled over by the first one here at Fantastic HQ and when the other two came out they were passed around like hotcakes - a really stunning crime trilogy. BBC story

The Libertarian Futurist Society has announced the finalists for the Prometheus Hall of Fame Award:

"No Truce with Kings", Poul Anderson (1964)
"'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman", Harlan Ellison (1965)
"As Easy as A.B.C.", Rudyard Kipling (1912)
Cryptonomicon, Neal Stephenson (1999)

Libertarian Futurist Society

A newly discovered fossil has shed light on why a group of dinosaurs looks like birds, say scientists. Haplocheirus sollers may not be as charismatic as T. rex or as agile as a pterodactyl but it's thought to solve a long standing puzzle. Researchers believe its short arms and large claw show how bird-like dinosaurs evolved independently of birds. BBC story

Actor Dave Prowse, who starred as Darth Vader in the original Star Wars films, is in remission from prostate cancer, he has confirmed. The 74-year-old told The Daily Mirror he was given the all-clear last month after being diagnosed a year before. Dave Prowse Web Site

Winners of the 2009 Aurealis Awards (Australia's juried awards) have been announced:

Aurealis Awards

Best Science Fiction Novel
Wonders of a Godless World, Andrew McGahan (Allen & Unwin)
The Grand Conjunction: Astropolis Book Three, Sean Williams (Orbit)

Best Science Fiction Short Story
"Clockwork, Patchwork and Ravens", Peter M. Ball (Apex May 2009)
"To Dream of Stars: An Astronomer's Lament", Peter M. Ball (Apex Oct 2009)
"A Hundredth Name", Christopher Green (Abyss & Apex #31)
"Defence of the Realm", Greg Mellor (Cosmos #25)
"Soulmates", Mike Resnick & Lezli Robyn (Asimov's Sep 2009)

Best Fantasy Novel
Magician's Apprentice, Trudi Canavan (Orbit)
Horn, Peter Ball (Twelfth Planet)
The Last Stormlord, Glenda Larke (HarperVoyager)
Witches Incorporated, K.E. Mills (HarperVoyager)
The Dark Griffin, K.J. Taylor (HarperVoyager)

Best Fantasy Short Story
"Father's Kill", Christopher Green (Beneath Ceaseless Skies

"Once a Month, On a Sunday", Ian McHugh (Andromeda
Spaceways Inflight Magazine #40)
"Siren Beat", Tansy Rayner Roberts (Roadkill/Siren Beat)
"Words", Angela Slatter (The Lifted Brow #5)
"Something Better than Death", Lucy Sussex (Aurealis #42)

Best Horror Novel
Red Queen, Honey Brown (Penguin Australia)
Horn, Peter Ball (Twelfth Planet)
The Dead Path, Stephen M. Irwin (Hachette Australia)
Night's Cold Kiss, Tracey O'Hara (HarperCollins Australia)
Slights, Kaaron Warren (Angry Robot Books)

Best Horror Short Story
"Wives", Paul Haines (X6)
"Slice of Life — A Spot of Liver", Paul Haines (Slice of Life)
"Jesse's Gift", Felicity Dowker (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine #40)
"Having Faith", Christopher Green (Nossa Morte
Feb 2009)
"The Message", Andrew J. McKiernan (Midnight Echo #2)

Best Anthology
Eclipse 3, Jonathan Strahan, ed. (Night Shade)
The New Space Opera 2, Gardner Dozois & Jonathan Strahan, eds. (Harper Eos)
New Ceres Nights, Alisa Krasnostein & Tehani Wessely, eds. (Twelfth Planet)
X6, Keith Stevenson, ed. (Coeur de Lion)
Eclipse 2, Jonathan Strahan, ed. (Night Shade)

Best Collection
Oceanic, Greg Egan (Gollancz)
A Book of Endings, Deborah Biancotti (Twelfth Planet)
Slice of Life, Paul Haines (The Mayne Press)
Johnny Phillips, Werewolf Detective, Robbie Matthews (Australian Speculative Fiction)

Best Young Adult Novel
Leviathan, Scott Westerfeld (Penguin)
The Puzzle Ring, Kate Forsyth (Pan Macmillan)
The Museum of Mary Child, Cassandra Golds (Puffin)
A Small Free Kiss in the Dark, Glenda Millard (Allen & Unwin)
Scarecrow, Sean Williams (HarperCollins Australia)

Best Young Adult Short Story
"Seventeen", Cat Sparks (Masques)
"Dragon Bones", Joanne Anderton (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine #39)
"Paper Dragons", Sue Isle (Shiny #5)
"Once a Month, on a Sunday", Ian McHugh (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine #40 Sep 2009)
"Like Us", Tansy Rayner Roberts (Shiny #5)

BSFA Award nominations: The Awards will be presented at this year’s Eastercon, Odyssey .


China Mieville - The City and the City, Macmillan
Stephen Baxter - Ark, Gollancz,
Adam Roberts - Yellow Blue Tibia, Gollancz
Ursula Le Guin - Lavinia, Gollancz


Ian Watson & Roberto Quaglia - The Beloved Time of Their Lives - The Beloved of My Beloved, Newcon Press
Eugie Foster - Sinner, Baker, Fabulist, Priest; Red Mask, Black Mask, Gentleman, Beast - Interzone
Ian Whates - The Assistant - The Solaris Book of Science Fiction Volume 3
Ian McDonald - Vishnu at the Cat Circus
Kim Lakin-Smith - Johnnie and Emmie-Lou Get Married - Interzone
Dave Hutchinson - The Push, Newcon Press


Adam Tredowski - covers of Interzone issues 220, 224 and 225
Nitzan Klamer - 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, cover, art project published online (http://www.flickr.com/photos/kipizki/3753443748/in/set-72157621759215456/)
Stephanie Pui-Min Law- Emerald - http://www.shadowscapes.com/image.php?lineid=23&bid=512
Stephan Martiniere - Cover of Desolation Road by Ian McDonald: http://www.angel.org/will/site/files/ian-mcdonald-desolation-road.jpg


Nick Lowe - Mutant Popcorn, Interzone
John Clute - Canary Fever, Beccon
Deepa D - I didn't Dream of Dragons -
Farah Mendlesohn and Edward James - A Short History of Fantasy

Jedediah Berry has been named the winner of the 2010 William L. Crawford Award for first novel The Manual of Detection. The Award, presented annually at The International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts, is for a new fantasy writer whose first book appeared the previous year. The award committee shortlisted Deborah Biancotti's collection A Book of Endings, Kari Sperring's novel Living with Ghosts, and Ali Shaw's novel The Girl With Glass Feet, and wanted to commend two other authors whose works were ineligible this year but were highly regarded: Robert V.S. Redick, whose The Red Wolf Conspiracy appeared in 2008 and whose The Ruling Sea appears in 2010, and Michal Ajvaz, whose The Other City originally appeared in Czech in 1993 but was first translated into English by Gerald Turner in 2009

Hammer Films to adapt and producer Susan Hill’s bestselling ghost story "The Woman in Black" with Talisman Films.
Hammer Films has optioned feature rights to Susan Hill’s bestselling ghost story The Woman In Black and will produce with Talisman Films. The story follows a young lawyer who travels to a remote village to sort through a recently deceased client's papers. There he uncovers tragic secrets and encounters the mysterious woman in black

A selection of props and costumes from BBC One's Doctor Who are to go under the hammer in London later this month. Fans can snap up their own Cyberman, Dalek or Sea Devil at the auction, as well as costumes worn by the 10th Doctor himself, David Tennant. BBC story

Troubles abound at Full Moon Press. Full Moon Press, an American small press run by Paul Little, closed its doors during the last week of january. They had published two books so far, including one by Rick Hautala, and had planned to release books by Tim Waggoner, Brian Lumley and Steven Savile, among others. Set up in 2008, Full Moon announced an extremely ambitious publishing schedule of over 40 books, and sold lifetime memberships at three tiers, of $500, $2000 and $4000 - it looks like some clients are going to be bitterly disappointed.

The Amazon model of selling e-books for $9.99 is being challenged by publishers, who are setting tiered pricing for digital books. The number of publishers ready to ditch the $9.99 pricing model for digital books has grown to three, marking the likely end to the bargain that has been enjoyed by customers of Amazon and other online retailers.
HarperCollins, owned by News Corp., and Hachette Book Group are getting ready to join Macmillan in setting tiered e-book pricing, sharing a percentage of sales with retailers. Under the so-called "agency model," retailers get 30% of sales. Information Week

Children's writer Dame Jacqueline Wilson is the most borrowed author of the past decade in the UK. Wilson's books, which include Double Act, were borrowed from libraries more than 16 million times since 2000. Bestseller The Story Of Tracy Beaker, is the single most borrowed book over the same period, according to figures released by Public Lending Right (PLR). However US thriller writer James Patterson was the most borrowed writer from June 2008 to June 2009. BBC story

Dame Jacqueline Wilson
Danielle Steel
Catherine Cookson
Josephine Cox
James Patterson
RL Stine
Mick Inkpen
Janet & Allan Ahlberg
Roald Dahl
Agatha Christie
Source: PLR


Science-fiction author, translator, magazine editor, and anime "science-fiction researcher" Takumi Shibano passed away due to pneumonia on Saturday, January 16. He was 83. Shibano was born on October 27, 1926 in the central Japanese prefecture of Ishikawa. He co-founded and edited Uchujin (literally, "Cosmic Dust"), Japan's first science-fiction fan magazine, in 1957. Anime magazine
Zelda Rubinstein, the US actress best known for her role as the diminutive psychic in 1982 film Poltergeist, has died in Los Angeles at the age of 76. The 4ft 3in (1.29m) actress died in hospital on Wednesday 27th January after recently suffering a heart attack, her agent told the Los Angeles Times. BBC story
American novelist JD Salinger, author of classic 20th Century book The Catcher in the Rye, has died aged 91. The reclusive writer died of natural causes at his home in the state of New Hampshire, his son said. The Catcher In The Rye, first published in 1951, is a tale of teenage angst. It has become one of the most influential American novels of the modern era. BBC story
Writer Kage Baker, 57, died January 31, 2010 of cancer at home in Pismo Beach, CA. Baker was best known for her Company series of time travel novels and stories.
David Brown, the producer behind hit films including Jaws and The Sting, has died at the age of 93. Brown brought Elvis to the small screen for the first time in Love Me Tender, before taking up a job at Fox. He later set up his own company with Richard Zanuck, producing both Jaws and The Sting, starring Paul Newman - which won an Oscar for best film in 1973.
Donald Pickering: Donald Pickering had appeared in many television, film and radio roles. His television appearances include several roles in Doctor Who, The Pallisers, The House of Eliott, Watson in the 1980 series Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson, Yes, Prime Minister, Brittas Empire and Executive Stress. Independent obituary
John McCallum, the Australian film and TV pioneer who helped create classic series Skippy the Bush Kangaroo, has died in Sydney at the age of 91. BBC story
William Tenn was the pseudonym of Philip Klass, a British-born American science fiction author, notable for many stories with satirical elements. He died on February 7th, of heart failure at the age of 89. SFWA

Dept of Smug Self Satisfaction - cont

a) Dear Laraine, Thanks for sending my order so quickly. The books arrived on Saturday and were very well wrapped up and are in excellent condition. This is the second time I have ordered books from you. The first was through Amazon and I am very impressed with the condition of the books received. Thank you so much. Pat

b) Hello Laraine,
thanks for the confirmation and for the discount. I have ordered from you before from this postal address and this email address (and several times from previous addresses and at conventions). I know your fantastic (pun intended) newsletter and I treasure it. I have been receiving it for several months now and I really look forward to it as it makes up for not being able to afford my subscription to LOCUS anymore. Please keep it coming! Kind regards Tom

c) Hi. Just to let you know that the copy of Electric Velocipede I ordered recently arrived safely and promptly yesterday (Wednesday). The magazine was in excellent condition and it was very well packaged too. Top marks all round! Feel free to quote me in any promotional literature. All the best. Dave

d) The best wrapped book I've ever received and the order was processed within hours of placing it. The edition didn't match the artwork provided by Amazon but seller made this clear in the description. Highly recommended! (Amazon UK)

e) Super emballage, marque page inclus, beaucoup de soin dans le paquetage et délai hyper rapide (Amazon Fr)

f) Very prompt shipment, particularly in coming from overseas. The book itself is fairly old and fragile, but was packaged with great care and arrived in excellent condition. (Amazon US)

g) Absolutely Fantastic Packaging! Never seen better. (Amazon JP)

h) Artikel nach etwa einer Woche in beschriebenem Zustand angekommen (Amazon De)

j) I wish they were all this good!

k) Hi. My recent book from you came the day after dispatch email. I was amazed. This was my very first order from Amazon. I'll remember your superb service. Liked & using your card bookmark too :-) Many thanks indeed for great book, service & bargain. Lyn Morris.

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