Here’s my schedule for Boskone this weekend!
Loose Ends and Contradictions in Doctor Who – Friday 18:00 – 18:50, Marina 4 (Westin)
*Spoilers, sweetie!* Doctor Who has become infamous for its loose ends and contradictions — most of which get explained away with a little timey-wimey flash and sparkle. Yet, we still love The Doctor. In fact, many of those seeming problems tend to open future storylines and plot points. Which do we most want to see resolved? Which seem too far gone to pull back? And will we see River again … or has that loose end been tied?
Welcome to the Dark Side! – Friday 21:00 – 21:50, Marina 3 (Westin)
Where there are heros, there be villains. And Star Wars is packed with wonderfully wretched scum (versus lovable rogues who prefer to go solo). It’s so good to be bad in that far-, far-away galaxy. From palpably evil Emperor Palpatine to emo king Kylo Ren, jellybellied Jabba the Hut to big bad Lord Vader, aren’t the villains the ones who make Star Wars sing? Why do these wicked characters work? Why do we love them, or love to hate them? And are they all really the bad guys they seem to be?
Reading: Susan Jane Bigelow – Saturday 10:00 – 10:25, Independence (Westin)
The J.J. Abrams Effect – Saturday 12:00 – 12:50, Marina 2 (Westin)
J.J. Abrams is taking the Hollywood box office by storm with his innovative new films, television series, and reboots. From Lost to Star Trek to Star Wars and beyond, Abrams-developed projects delight in redefining visual storytelling, but is there a point where his creative “genius” goes too far or not far enough? What makes his work feel so innovative despite his tendency to reboot without reinvention?
The Sandman Legacy – Saturday 15:00 – 15:50, Burroughs (Westin)
At a time when the comics industry was trying to survive, Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman was published. Back then, many thought comics were dying. The Sandman opened their eyes. A gateway comic series for new readers, including women, how has its reputation fared in succeeding years? Looking back at its success, what impact has it had on comics? Could you describe the series’ influence on today’s comics, fiction, and film as, well, Endless?
Steven Universe and the Cartoon Renaissance – Saturday 20:00 – 20:50, Marina 4 (Westin)
“Believe in Steven!” Cartoons are back with a bang, and the incredible Steven (a half-human, half-Gem hero) is helping save the world. Steven Universe is just one of several adult speculative cartoons that have been praised for their complex characters and rich worldbuilding. From Space Ghost to Futurama to Robot Chicken, these shows have captured our imaginations. Why do we love them so much, and what else should we be watching?
Come check it out! I have goodies to give away and more!
Lots has happened in the last, uh, year. I’m bad at blogging. I never used to be, there was a time when I would blog every day about this or that.
So, let’s sum up the things:
2. Book news! The forthcoming final book in the Extrahuman Union series is now titled EXTRAHUMANS, and is scheduled for release late this year. The first three books, now titled BROKEN, SKY RANGER, and THE SPARK, will be coming out as re-releases before then. BROKEN is due out on March 22! We have a cool new cover and all kinds of great stuff planned.
3. Secrets! I can’t tell you what they are but they’re cool.
I am going to conventions, naturally, and I’ll post my schedule as those come up.
Big news, everyone! The excellent Book Smugglers are getting into novel publishing, and their first book off the line will be WAKING GIFTS, the fourth and final book in the Extrahumans series!
And here’s the teaser for WAKING GIFTS:
Be careful what you ask for…
Jill feels like a nobody. Her extrahuman powers are weak and pathetic, and yet they still got her run out of her job and her home. She’s a second-rate thief with few friends and even fewer prospects. Jill just wants to be somebody, just once.
Then, during a break-in gone wrong, she finds a mysterious alien orb–and everything changes. She gets all that she ever wanted, and then some.
Now Jill is thrown into a quest for answers that will take her from the high mountains of Valen to the depths of interstellar space to a bizarre prison planet where old friends and enemies both are held captive. By the time it’s over the fate of her friends, her world, a vanished alien species, and the entire Confederation will rest on her shoulders.
And through it all the orb whispers in her mind… awaken and take flight, for the dream has ended.
Better yet, they’re going to be republishing the first three books with all new covers, as well!
Oh, and yeah, that thing about the TV show for BROKEN is true, things are in the works. Fingers extra crossed there.
More on all this in the coming months!
A note–I don’t usually do reviews here. But this one had no other place to go, since it’s not on Goodreads or anywhere else. I also wanted to get this up before the Kickstarter for the book expires. So here it is!
I should also add that I was given a review copy of issue #1 in exchange for an honest review as part of a review exchange.
God, just look at that title. Sgt. Sasquatch: The Bigfoot of Liberty, by Glen Richardson. It’s glorious. It promises pulpy action and a story that is full of unapologetic Golden Age comic book schmalz that doesn’t take itself too seriously. And to a degree, that’s what we get with the first issue.
So, here’s the basic plot. Spoilers ahead!
A bunch of U.S. Air Force guys from central casting are flying a random German scientist and a buxom American scientist somewhere just after WWII. The crate the German scientist is carrying has a weird robot-like thing inside it, and it gets loose to cause havoc. The plane crashes, and the German guy gets into a fight with Bigfoot over an obelisk from Atlantis. One of the Air Force guys gets shot in the struggle, as does the Sasquatch. But then the Sasquatch senses the love of the Air Force guy for the buxom scientist and decides to mingle the guy’s essence with his own–creating the title character!
So, the good. I like the action, here–it’s very fast-paced and exciting. It also feels like a nod to all of the batshit-German-discovers-lost-treasures stories that came out after WWII, up to and including the Indiana Jones movies. This is all in that vein. I also thought the art was pretty decent, if still a bit rough around the edges, and the Kickstarter page suggests that future issues will be colored. The art there looks fantastic, so I imagine it’ll just get better from here.
There are some drawbacks. First, this is an origin story, and I am frankly not too interested in origin stories. Origin stories find it necessary to cram all kinds of backstory in without showing the audience why they ought to care about the character after the origin. I looked at the other covers on the Kickstarter site–in one of them, Sgt. Sasquatch is riding a bee! I’d like to read that one a lot more. BEES.
It also took itself a little bit more seriously than I was expecting, which may be a function of having to introduce characters, build the mythos of the world, and get everyone familiar with the basic setup.
However, this is a series that has a lot of potential. Go check it out on the Kickstarter site, and hopefully we’ll see lots more of Sgt. Sasquatch in the future.
Okay everyone, I’m gonna be at Boskone 52 this weekend, and I don’t care how much snow there’s gonna be! I’m on some panels, and I’m doing both a reading and an autograph session. Stop by! Say hi!
Here’s where I’ll be:
The Dark Side of Doctor Who
Friday 16:00 – 16:50, Harbor I (Westin)
We’ve all seen the bright and charming Doctor saving the universe. But traveling through time and space in a blue police box isn’t all sunshine and puppies. Threaded through the rollicking adventures, the Doctor deals with some serious, dark topics that navigate the border of horror. “The Empty Child,” “Blink,” and “Silence in the Library” are just a few of the episodes that slide into dark fiction territory. What makes these episodes so special to the audience, to the series, and to the Doctor himself? What would the Doctor be without this edge of darkness? What other episodes have made us pause and cast a glance over our shoulder to peer through shaded eyes at what might be hiding in the shadows?
Jim Mann (M), me, Ginjer Buchanan, LJ Cohen, Laurie Mann
The Continuing Adventures of the QUILTBAG
Friday 18:00 – 18:50, Harbor II (Westin)
Our media may be starting to feature more characters and situations from the queer/questioning, undecided, intersex, lesbian, transgender/transsexual, bisexual, allied/asexual, gay/genderqueer (QUILTBAG) perspective, but there’s still a long way to go. How do we move from tokenism to full inclusion? We’ll discuss favorite characters, new challenges, and available resources for writers and readers.
John Chu (M), me, Justine Graykin, Julia Rios, Jill Shultz
Off the Air
Friday 19:00 – 19:50, Marina 2 (Westin)
Why does good television fail? Panelists talk about SF/F/H TV shows that died too soon, including Firefly, Alphas, The Tomorrow People, Millennium, Jericho, Almost Human, and more. Were they as good as we think? What are we missing?
Stephen P. Kelner (M), D. Lynn Smith, Don Pizarro, Ken Altabef, me
Autographing: Elizabeth Bear. Susan Jane Bigelow, James Cambias, Andrea Hairston
Saturday 11:00 – 11:50, Galleria-Autographing (Westin)
Finding Diverse Fiction
Saturday 12:00 – 12:50, Marina 2 (Westin)
There is a clear desire for increased diversity within SF/F fiction and fandom. There are also a lot of emerging writers who are bringing diversity to the genre, but many of them are still flying below the publicity radar. Authors and publishers come together to share their “must read” lists and tips on where to find some of the new up-and-coming authors.
Charles Stross (M), me, Don Pizarro, Jarvis Sheffield, Lauren Roy
Reading: Susan Jane Bigelow
Saturday 17:00 – 17:25, Independence (Westin)
Yeah, I feel weird about making one of these. WHATEVER.
Here’s what’s eligible for things this year:
- THE SEEKER STAR. Candlemark & Gleam, 2014.
- “Sarah’s Child.” Strange Horizons, May 2014
- “The Possessed Egg Predicament.” The Toast, May 2014
- “The Radio” War Stories. Ed. Jaym Gates and Andrew Liptak. Apex Publications, 2014.
- “Clicking.” Invisible: Personal Essays on Representation in SF/F. Ed. Jim C. Hines. 2014.
And that’s it! Not a bad batch of things for this year.