There’s a big sale on at Night Shade Books, one of the best SF&F small presses around. You have to order four books to qualify, but they have plenty of good material available, including Catherynne M. Valente’s The Habitation of the Blessed, which we reviewed last issue. Some of their forthcoming books are included in the sale as well, and we’ll be talking about some of those in our new issue due online next week. You have until midnight on January 23rd to place your order.
We have seen some concern on Twitter following on from Night Shade’s well-publicized financial problems last year. Jonathan Strahan, who does quite a few books with them, responded that things seem to be getting better and money is starting to flow to authors.
In the latest episode of the wonderful “Live with Gary K. Wolfe!” podcast, Jonathan Strahan and Gary K. Wolfe talk about what they are looking for in writing about books. If you want to know the sort of thing that I’m looking for as regards submissions to Salon Futura, go and listen to them. They have nailed it.
Solaris Books and their sister company, Abaddon, have produced their 2011 catalogue. You can find it online here. Highlights for us include new books by our friends Juliet E. McKenna and Gareth L. Powell.
The January ebook editions of Clarkesworld and Lightspeed are now available in the Wizard’s Tower bookstore.
Locus magazine has celebrated its 600th issue by going digital. The ebook subscription, which costs $48/year, gives you access to EPUB (iPad), MOBI (Kindle) and PDF versions of the magazine. It looks great on an iPad, and means that subscribers outside North America can get the latest issue hot off the presses.
Issue #600 contains a long section on science fiction in the digital age, with contributions from many industry luminaries, including Neil Gaiman, Cory Doctorow and even our editor, Cheryl Morgan.
Congratulations are also due to our short fiction columnist, Karen Burnham, who has begun her tenure as editor of the Locus Roundtable blog.
Orbit UK has emailed us with a link to their 2011 catalogue. You can find it here (along with Little Brown’s other imprints). Highlights for me include Jon Courtenay Grimwood’s venture into vampire-ridden Venice, a new fantasy series from Daniel Abraham, and Deadline, the sequel to Mira Grant’s wonderful FEED. It is also good to see them picking up authors from the other side of the world such as Helen Lowe and Trent Jamieson. Orbit’s operation is fairly international these days, so there’s a good chance you’ll be seeing all of these books in North America as well.
Via Neil Gaiman’s Twitter feed we learned of a broadcast on Wisconsin Public Radio entitled “The Uses of Enchantment.” Being mainstream journalism, it starts with a long interview with someone who believes that fairies are real, but the rest of the program is taken up with interviews with Gaiman, Salman Rushdie and A.S Byatt on why they use magic in their fiction. It is good stuff, and especially interesting in that Rushdie has very similar ideas about old deities to those that Gaiman uses in American Gods. You can listen to it here.
The translated samples from the Brazilian steampunk anthology, Vaporpunk, that Jeff VanderMeer mentioned in the latest Salon podcast are now available online at Beyond Victoriana.
Tom Hunter, the current Clarke Award Administrator, has published an open letter on the Torque Control blog asking for feedback on the future of the award. You can add your comments here.
Nnedi Okorafor, who was a guest on our first ever podcast, has recently been on a radio show produced by the BBC World Series. The Forum is very much like a panel discussion podcast, but with very diverse guests. Nnedi’s episode also included an expert on stress who wants hospitals redesigned to make them more welcoming, and an ecologist who wants us to eat insects to reduce food shortages. Nnedi does get to talk about science fiction in Africa, though the material about insects might be the most science-fictional part of the program. The episode is currently available for listening here.
Today’s Guardian contains a round up of the favorite books of 2010 by a variety of the newspaper’s regular contributors. Our own Sam Jordison picked Birdbrain, by Finnish author Johanna Sinisalo. You’ll find out why when our issue #4 goes online. Meanwhile the paper’s SF reviewer, Eric Brown, picked Horns by Joe Hill, and blogger Damien G. Walter picked Kraken by China Miéville.