Scott Marlowe
Scott Marlowe, fantasy author

Scott Marlowe

Author of the Alchemancer and Assassin Without a Name fantasy series

Weekend Links 1/9/2009

Ft. Worth Museum of Science A few things I came across recently…

Writing: The Temporary Career

I'm not going to name names in this post. Partly because it would be mean. Partly because I'm only speculating on the reasons why, and have no real proof. But I still wanted to talk about something that's rampant in the word of publishing. It's also rampant in other media like radio, TV, movies, and music. It's Where Are They Now Syndrome.

Upcoming 2009 fantasy and science fiction book releases - part II

Back in August 2008, the Fantasy Book Critic posted an article that showcased his pick of the best upcoming 2009 book releases. That spotlight really only scratched the surface of what 2009 had to offer though, so now he is back with Part Two, which is a little bigger, and hopefully, better. So enjoy, and please note that all release dates are subject to change and that any covers depicted are not necessarily the final version.

Saving the Publishing Industry?

Certainly, times are tough in publishing. Editors and staff are being laid off. Some publishing houses have instituted acquisition freezes or slowed down acquiring new titles. Apparently, the majority of publishing firms have indicated that raises will be either minimal or non-existent. Overall, in recent months, book sales are down, and Borders Books is teetering on the edge on whether it will even survive.

Does the publishing industry need saving? Does it deserve it?

The Evolution of Women in Fantasy Movies

Like with anything else, if you watch enough fantasy movies over a long enough period of time, you'll start to notice certain trends emerging. Today we're going to take a look at one of those trends: The evolution of women in fantasy from game pieces to players -- or to use a chess metaphor, from pawns to queens.

The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy Art by Artists You've Never Heard Of

Artwork gold mine and community site Deviant Art has picked the best artists of the year -- one per month, based on the work submitted to the community.

What makes for a good book?

Uncle Geoff brushes the dust off his voluminous collection of science fiction and fantasy novels and asks the question, just what does make for a good book?

Weekend Links 1/4/09

IMG_0574 This weekend links post is more of a "Sunday Links" post as I completely missed my usual Friday posting date, but that's what happens sometimes.

Here we go with this round of interesting and fun links:

True or False? Scientific Research is a Requirement to Write Believable Science Fiction

So says Jason Stoddard when he talks about The Burden of the Modern Science Fiction Writer. He makes an interesting point. If science fiction is all about science, then only a thorough understanding of science, or at least the particular science around which the story revolves, will result in a believable story. Otherwise, he says, you get the kind of technical explanations that hearken back to the days of Golden Age SF.

The Burden of the Modern Science Fiction Writer

It’s no coincidence that many of the people who wrote science fiction in the “Golden Age” were engineers, technicians, or scientists. Back then, if you knew something about electronics, mechanics, or propulsion, you were fully enabled to imagine the wondrous future that was coming: rockets to take us into space, helicopters to replace cars, household robots to mix your martini.

Venus and Jupiter Glow Like Eyes Next to the Mouth of the Moon

Last week, we told you about an unusual stargazing experience created by Venus and Jupiter coming into close proximity to the Moon. Here's what it looked like over Mumbai, India.

The David Gemmell Legend Award

To those unaware, a new award for fantasy literature has been created, the David Gemmell Legend Award. The award is named in honor of deceased author David Gemmell’s first published novel, Legend. The award is meant to be given to a written work that is in the spirit of David Gemmell’s work.

Magazines Come to Google Book Search

…when you search on Google Book Search, you'll be searching across the full text of both books and an ever-growing number of magazines…

Just Plotting Along

Whenever I teach I'm asked by newbies how to write that boring middle section of the book, the part between the electrifying opening and the dramatic conclusion. "You mean the plot?" I always reply.

Weekend Links 12/27/08

Durango, CO Another round of interesting things I came across, out a day late because yesterday was post-xmas shopping day and, more importantly, a day after xmas bike ride to burn off some of those xmas day calories.

Here they are.

Do Science Fiction Fans Hate Libraries?

My friend Megan is a librarian at a major metropolitan library. She recently asked me "why don't sci-fi and fantasy readers use libraries?" I was taken aback - I figured that genre fans everywhere used libraries and that would include readers of science fiction. But no, apparently they don't.

Discipline

If you're a writer, there are many hurdles to overcome.

Was Early Earth a Fiery Hell or Packed with Life?

Conventional wisdom among geologists has always been that the first several million years in Earth's 4.5 billion-year history were an age of lava and fire. Nothing could possibly live in on the burning planet until at least 3.2 billion years ago - or so scientists thought.

This Writing Life: Jason Sanford "To dump, or not to dump"

Ah, the information dump. That wordy bit of fictional exposition, during which all the background information the reader needs to enjoy a story is expressed in one great big pile of, well, dump.

Advertising, The Science Fiction Version

Two California companies have invented technologies that quite literally create ads customized to the moments in which they're being viewed. This is a really cool and scary idea.

How to Write a Novel (Part II)

You’re writing a novel and you’re curious to see just how many words you’ve written. 10,000. Good. Keep going.

Weekend Links 12/19/08

Tulum Mayan RuinsHere's this weekend's cool and interesting links for your viewing pleasure.

The Great American Query Letter

Recently, funny things have been happening in my slush pile. I find myself receiving well-written, correctly formatted, professional-looking query letters from bad writers.

Saturn's Atmosphere Is A Modern Art Sensation

This isn't a newly-discovered Rothko painting or some kind of abstract masterpiece — it's the atmosphere of Saturn, photographed four different times on the same day.

Who are the Most Memorable Characters in Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror?

Who are the most memorable characters in science fiction, fantasy and horror? What makes them so memorable?

The Emerald-Skinned Women Who Make the Universe a Greener Place

The most recent Star Trek trailer briefly featured a particular species of green-skinned female known for their seductive powers. Green women are a force to be reckoned with in science fiction, and they range from pint-sized invaders to powerful warriors and cunning schemers. We list the green-skinned ladies who make the universe a more colorful place.

The 10 Best Apocalypse Novels of Pre-Golden Age SF (1904-33)

With Wall-E director Andrew Stanton working on a film based on Edgar Rice Burroughs's 1917 novel A Princess of Mars, you need a crash course in books from this seminal era in science fiction.

Do Science Fiction Fans Hate Libraries?

My friend Megan is a librarian at a major metropolitan library. She recently asked me "why don't sci-fi and fantasy readers use libraries?" I was taken aback - I figured that genre fans everywhere used libraries and that would include readers of science fiction. But no, apparently they don't.

Weekend Links 12/12/08

Me and the wife in Durango, CO A few things I came across this past week, presented here for your weekend enjoyment.

2,900-Year-Old Gravestone Reveals Ancient Belief System
A 2,900-year-old gravestone from the ancient kingdom of Sam'al, located in what is today southeastern Turkey, has shed light on an ancient religious belief heretofore unknown. The gravestone, called a stele, is in nearly pristine condition and archaeologists were able to translate all the writing on it. Now they've gained new insight into what people of the Iron Age believed about souls and death.

No Objectivity: Fantasy’s Guide to Holiday Fashion
You know, I forget I can’t dress myself until the Holiday Fashion Guides come out. I know them well — they feature dresses that cost three figures and close-ups of eyeshadow palettes at ludicrous angles, and remind me what I should be wearing, and what I should avoid lest I get thrown out of all those holiday parties I will apparently spend all of December attending.

Top Ten Reasons Books Are Better Than Sex
Joe's Top Ten.

Regenerating a Mammoth for $10 Million
Scientists are talking for the first time about the old idea of resurrecting extinct species as if this staple of science fiction is a realistic possibility, saying that a living mammoth could perhaps be regenerated for as little as $10 million.

The Official NASA Guide To Drinking Your Own Urine
If you're going on a long space trip, you'll soon realize that you can't carry all the fresh water you'll need with you. The cost of getting all that water into space would destroy your budget before you ever built a single photon torpedo launcher. The answer, of course, is recycling. Those childhood dreams of traveling to space probably didn't include drinking your own sweat and pee.

Hubble Snaps First Photo Of Planet Circling A Star
It took about seven years, but NASA has finally found a planet that circles another star. The Hubble Space Telescope took the first visible-light snapshot of Fomalhaut b, which orbits a southern star, called Fomalhaut, about 25 light-years away.