At the risk or prolonging this thread (which seems to be going nowhere
lately), I thought I'd forward some relevant (and not-so-relevant) excerpts
from the latest issue of ANSIBLE, the Hugo-Award Winning science fiction
fanzine from the UK that rarely takes the news seriously. There's even a
local angle that made the headlines in London (see third paragraph below).
Also note the nominees for this year's Prometheus Award, which consists of
an ounce of gold given to the author of the best Libertarian science fiction
novel of 2006.
ARTHUR C. CLARKE appeared on the BBC website in his favourite t-shirt: `I
invented the satellite and all I got was this lousy t-shirt.'
MICHAEL CRICHTON and _State of Fear_ weren't actually named in Al Gore's 21
March statement before a US House committee, but the metaphor for global
warming contains a definite hint: `The planet has a fever. If your baby has
a fever, you go to the doctor [...] if your doctor tells you you need to
intervene here, you don't say "Well, I read a science fiction novel that
tells me it's not a problem."' [TM]
KENNETH ENG, sf author noted in _Ansible 221_ as beneficiary of some
suspicious Amazon reviews, has found it's possible to publicize oneself _too
much_-- with his sure-fire controversial article called `Why I Hate Blacks'.
From the _LA Times_: `The column, published in the San Francisco-based
_AsianWeek_ newspaper in the waning days of African American History Month,
was so astonishingly hateful that activists of all stripes immediately
rushed forward to condemn it. _AsianWeek_ Editor Ted Fang issued a lengthy
apology and fired Eng, who is in his early 20s and also writes science
fiction novels. The small press that published Eng's books announced last
week that it was taking them off the market.' (7 March) This furore earned
Eng a Fox News tv interview, and mockery in _Wired_.
RANDOM FANDOM. _Jyrki Kasvi_, a Finnish MP seeking reelection, has a
campaign website entirely in Klingon. He explains: `Some have thought it is
blasphemy to mix politics and Klingon ... Others say it is good if
politicians can laugh at themselves.' [FL] How side-splitting.
MORE AWARDS. _Tiptree_ winners for 2006: Shelley Jackson, _Half Life_;
Catherynne M. Valente, _The Orphan's Tales: In the Night Garden_. [PM]
_Prometheus_ final shortlist: Orson Scott Card, _Empire_; John Scalzi, _The
Ghost Brigades_; Charles Stross, _Glasshouse_; Vernor Vinge, _Rainbows End_;
F. Paul Wilson, _Harbingers_.
_Broadcasting Press Guild:_ drama series, _Life on Mars_; multichannel,
_Bram Stoker_ novel award: Stephen King, _Lisey's Story_.
_SF Hall of Fame:_ Gene Wolfe, Ridley Scott, Ed Emshwiller, Gene
_Skylark:_ Beth Meacham.
AS OTHERS SEE US III. A Neurologist Explains: `What is schizotypal? It's a
more subtle version of schizophrenia. This is not somebody who's completely
socially crippled; they're just solitary, detached: these are the lighthouse
keepers, the projectionists in the movie theaters. These are not people who
are thought-disordered to the point of being completely nonfunctional; these
are people who just believe in kinda strange stuff. They are into their Star
Trek conventions. They're into their astrology, they're into their telepathy
and their paranormal beliefs ...' (Robert Sapolsky [speech], _Freethought
Today_, 2003). [AC]
OUTRAGED LETTERS. _Ellen Datlow_ on the MLA's belief (_A236_) that Jonathan
Lethem is `poaching' genre concepts in his current fiction: `Now THIS is
silly, considering Lethem was writing sf before he moved into mainstream.'
_David K.M. Klaus_ sends a splendid movie-news headline reporting an
encounter somehow overlooked by historians: `Revived Ninja Turtles Defeat
Spartans At Thermopylae.'