Keep the money in the family

Jul. 28th, 2014 11:11 pm
[syndicated profile] stross_feed

Posted by Nicola Griffith

Today I'm here to sell books--not mine but books by other SF writers you know. Books available from online booksellers built by and for the SF community. This is essentially a commercial for a purely SFnal book-buying ecosystem: books by SF writers, published by SF writers, and sold by SF writers, with as much of the proceeds as humanly possible going to the creators. You can buy--without DRM--novels and short stories, collections and anthologies and magazines, stuff that you might actually want to read, and read anywhere, on any device.

Queen of this trio of innovative booksellers is Book View Cafe. BVC is a publishing collective initially formed in 2008 around a core group of SF writers who wanted to use the internet to sell their work. Six years later, they have a spiffy website with a daily blog and a formidable catalogue, both new and back-list. They sell in many formats--EPUB and MOBI, of course, but also a few in PDF, and a handful as audio and/or paper (these two last mainly, I think, through third-party retailers).

Book View Cafe is where you'll find Nebula- and Hugo-winning novels and stories by Vonda N. McIntyre. She does much of the coding that makes the books you buy render beautifully, and she'll be a Guest of Honour at next year's Worldcon. I've been a fan of her work since reading The Exile Waiting, then Dreamsnake, then Superluminal. (Even her Star Trek novels are good.) Her Nebula-winning The Moon and the Sun will be a film starring Pierce Brosnan, Bingbing Fan, Kaya Scodilario, and William Hurt next year.

Keep the money in the family

Today I'm here to sell books--not mine but books by other SF writers you know. Books available from online booksellers built by and for the SF community. This is essentially a commercial for a purely SFnal book-buying ecosystem: books by SF writers, published by SF writers, and sold by SF writers, with as much of the proceeds as humanly possible going to the creators. You can buy--without DRM--novels and short stories, collections and anthologies and magazines, stuff that you might actually want to read, and read anywhere, on any device.

Queen of this trio of innovative booksellers is Book View Cafe. BVC is a publishing collective initially formed in 2008 around a core group of SF writers who wanted to use the internet to sell their work. Six years later, they have a spiffy website with a daily blog and a formidable catalogue, both new and back-list. They sell in many formats--EPUB and MOBI, of course, but also a few in PDF, and a handful as audio and/or paper (these two last mainly, I think, through third-party retailers).

Book View Cafe is where you'll find Nebula- and Hugo-winning novels and stories by Vonda N. McIntyre. She does much of the coding that makes the books you buy render beautifully, and she'll be a Guest of Honour at next year's Worldcon. I've been a fan of her work since reading The Exile Waiting, then Dreamsnake, then Superluminal. (Even her Star Trek novels are good.) Her Nebula-winning The Moon and the Sun will be a film starring Pierce Brosnan, Bingbing Fan, Kaya Scodilario, and William Hurt next year.

There's a new blog post up on BVC every day. One of the bloggers--who, like McIntyre, is one of the collective's founders--is Ursula K. Le Guin. No doubt you're familiar with her stories (novels such as The Left Hand of Darkness and the Earthsea trilogy; shorter work like "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas") but you might be less familiar with her non-fiction. Le Guin is never afraid to say what must be said, often with compassion, sometimes with scathing wit. I still grin when I think about her review in the Guardian of Margaret Atwood's After the Flood, more particularly her opinion of Atwood's squirming away from the Science Fiction label.

Book View Cafe is where Linda Nagata publishes her novels, new and old. Try The Bohr Maker or her recent, Nebula-nominated Red: First Light. This is hard SF, military SF, and a bloody good read. I enjoyed it immensely.

As I've said, Book View Cafe began with SF writers but now they also sell historical, romance, and mainstream fiction. In the US you can find their books in your local library thanks to a clever deal with Overdrive. About 95% of their revenues go directly to authors. For more info than I could possibly give you here, see their FAQ. I think you might be particularly interested in how the collective works. And buy a book while you're there; they're not expensive.

I'm also inordinately fond of Wizard's Tower Books, the sales arm of Wizards' Tower Press. Formed by Hugo Award-winning fan Cheryl Morgan four years ago to sell both the books of other independent presses and their own WTP list, they've lately had a rethink and are now selling only their own books. Their list is small and interesting, with writers such as Lyda Morehouse and Ben Jeapes. Again, they're available DRM-free, in just about any format. And you don't have to choose which one: you get all formats included in one low price. For multi-platform folk, this is a great deal. The storefront is a bit sparse at the moment, as it's just reopened, but I have no doubt this will change. Meanwhile, go take a look and see if there's anything you fancy.

And finally there's Weightless Books. This is the one with, possibly, the most varied selection. They have books by Kelley Eskridge, my wife: her novel, Solitaire, and the truly amazing collection, Dangerous Space. (Yes, of course I'm biased. I'm her wife. But take my word for it: if you want your conceptions about gender forcibly rearranged and your heart squeezed by truly fine fiction, then this is the collection for you.) They have work by another Kelly, Kelly Link. Lin's husband, Gavin Grant, founded Weightless (and runs it with Michael J DeLuca) to sell Small Beer Press books. The works they sell now number in the zillions (it's a technical term), work by everyone from Kelley to Kelly to Peter Dickinson to Lavie Tidhar, as well as antholgies such as Rich Horton's The Year's Best, and magazines like Lightspeed and Clarkesworld. All in a variety of formats and DRM-free. You can read them on anything, anywhere, anytime.

These three online book shops--Book View Cafe, Wizard's Tower Books, and Weightless--are all worth your time. And money. They are enterprises built by SF readers and writers for SF readers and writers. The money stays in the community and supports the creation of more good books. Go buy something.

http://asknicola.blogspot.com/2013/03/hild-available-for-pre-order.html http://www.antipope.org/charlie/blog-static/2014/07/who-owns-sf.html

http://bookviewcafe.com/ http://bookviewcafe.com/bookstore/book-view-cafe-frequently-asked-questions/ http://bookviewcafe.com/blog/

http://bookviewcafe.com/bookstore/bvc-author/vonda-n-mcintyre/ http://io9.com/5967305/essential-star-trek-novels-that-even-non-trekkies-should-read

http://bookviewcafe.com/bookstore/bvc-author/ursula-k-le-guin/ http://www.theguardian.com/books/2009/aug/29/margaret-atwood-year-of-flood

http://bookviewcafe.com/bookstore/bvc-author/linda-nagata/

http://bookviewcafe.com/bookstore/book-view-cafe-frequently-asked-questions/

http://www.wizardstowerbooks.com/ http://www.cheryl-morgan.com/ http://www.wizardstowerbooks.com/creators/lyda-morehouse/ http://www.wizardstowerbooks.com/creators/ben-jeapes/

http://weightlessbooks.com/ https://weightlessbooks.com/category/authors/kelley-eskridge/ https://weightlessbooks.com/category/authors/kelly-link-authors/ https://weightlessbooks.com/category/authors/peter-dickinson/ https://weightlessbooks.com/category/authors/lavie-tidhar/

Keep the money in the family

Jul. 28th, 2014 11:11 pm
[syndicated profile] stross_feed

Posted by Nicola Griffith

Today I'm here to sell books--not mine but books by other SF writers you know. Books available from online booksellers built by and for the SF community. This is essentially a commercial for a purely SFnal book-buying ecosystem: books by SF writers, published by SF writers, and sold by SF writers, with as much of the proceeds as humanly possible going to the creators. You can buy--without DRM--novels and short stories, collections and anthologies and magazines, stuff that you might actually want to read, and read anywhere, on any device.

Queen of this trio of innovative booksellers is Book View Cafe. BVC is a publishing collective initially formed in 2008 around a core group of SF writers who wanted to use the internet to sell their work. Six years later, they have a spiffy website with a daily blog and a formidable catalogue, both new and back-list. They sell in many formats--EPUB and MOBI, of course, but also a few in PDF, and a handful as audio and/or paper (these two last mainly, I think, through third-party retailers).

Book View Cafe is where you'll find Nebula- and Hugo-winning novels and stories by Vonda N. McIntyre. She does much of the coding that makes the books you buy render beautifully, and she'll be a Guest of Honour at next year's Worldcon. I've been a fan of her work since reading The Exile Waiting, then Dreamsnake, then Superluminal. (Even her Star Trek novels are good.) Her Nebula-winning The Moon and the Sun will be a film starring Pierce Brosnan, Bingbing Fan, Kaya Scodilario, and William Hurt next year.

There's a new blog post up on BVC every day. One of the bloggers--who, like McIntyre, is one of the collective's founders--is Ursula K. Le Guin. No doubt you're familiar with her stories (novels such as The Left Hand of Darkness and the Earthsea trilogy; shorter work like "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas") but you might be less familiar with her non-fiction. Le Guin is never afraid to say what must be said, often with compassion, sometimes with scathing wit. I still grin when I think about her review in the Guardian of Margaret Atwood's After the Flood, more particularly her opinion of Atwood's squirming away from the Science Fiction label.

Book View Cafe is where Linda Nagata publishes her novels, new and old. Try The Bohr Maker or her recent, Nebula-nominated Red: First Light. This is hard SF, military SF, and a bloody good read. I enjoyed it immensely.

As I've said, Book View Cafe began with SF writers but now they also sell historical, romance, and mainstream fiction. In the US you can find their books in your local library thanks to a clever deal with Overdrive. About 95% of their revenues go directly to authors. For more info than I could possibly give you here, see their FAQ. I think you might be particularly interested in how the collective works. And buy a book while you're there; they're not expensive.

I'm also inordinately fond of Wizard's Tower Books, the sales arm of Wizards' Tower Press. Formed by Hugo Award-winning fan Cheryl Morgan four years ago to sell both the books of other independent presses and their own WTP list, they've lately had a rethink and are now selling only their own books. Their list is small and interesting, with writers such as Lyda Morehouse and Ben Jeapes. Again, they're available DRM-free, in just about any format. And you don't have to choose which one: you get all formats included in one low price. For multi-platform folk, this is a great deal. The storefront is a bit sparse at the moment, as it's just reopened, but I have no doubt this will change. Meanwhile, go take a look and see if there's anything you fancy.

And finally there's Weightless Books. This is the one with, possibly, the most varied selection. They have books by Kelley Eskridge, my wife: her novel, Solitaire, and the truly amazing collection, Dangerous Space. (Yes, of course I'm biased. I'm her wife. But take my word for it: if you want your conceptions about gender forcibly rearranged and your heart squeezed by truly fine fiction, then this is the collection for you.) They have work by another Kelly, Kelly Link. Lin's husband, Gavin Grant, founded Weightless (and runs it with Michael J DeLuca) to sell Small Beer Press books. The works they sell now number in the zillions (too many for me to count, anyway), work by everyone from Kelley to Kelly to Peter Dickinson to Lavie Tidhar, as well as anthologies such as Rich Horton's The Year's Best, and magazines like Lightspeed and Clarkesworld. All in a variety of formats and DRM-free. You can read them on anything, anywhere, anytime.

These three online book shops--Book View Cafe, Wizard's Tower Books, and Weightless--are all worth your time. And money. They are enterprises built by SF readers and writers for SF readers and writers. The money stays in the community and supports the creation of more good books. Go buy something.

[admin post] Admin Post: Final Bang Check-in! :D :D :D

Jul. 28th, 2014 02:27 pm
kate: The Losers team with 2014 Ante Up Big Bang in text (Losers: Big Bang 2014)
[personal profile] kate posting in [community profile] ante_up_losers
BANG DRAFTS ARE DUE NEXT MONDAY 8/4/14!

Please check out the Posting Tutorial. It is geared toward beginners (and includes screencaps), so if you already know how to post, etc., please just take a look at numbers 11-15 so you don't miss anything important.

Please respond to the top-level comments, even if you don't have any progress yet, just so we know you're here. Jump in with cheerleading anywhere you like, even if you're not technically on the team! And if you decide you *do* want to be on the team, go ahead an put up a comment at the sign-up post.

Please reply to everything you're signed up for. If you've got a bang and two complements, please post something on each thread so your teammates can track your progress and cheer you on! If you only comment on one thread, that's the only one that will be checked off.

Last week's check-in we were missing [personal profile] mergatrude, [personal profile] omens, [personal profile] charybdis, [personal profile] spurious_sanity, and [personal profile] azurian_defiant. I'll be sending messages out to make sure everything is okay.

Let us know if we're missing anyone on your team, or if you have any questions or concerns, please Contact A Mod.

Here we go!

Team Podfic:[personal profile] kisahawklin, [personal profile] lady_krysis, ✓[personal profile] mergatrude, [personal profile] nagasvoice, [personal profile] omens
Team Hyperborean: [personal profile] amethystina, ✓[personal profile] cleo69, [personal profile] jujitsuelf
Team Losers Tarot: [personal profile] mific, [personal profile] maharetr, ✓[personal profile] cleo69, [personal profile] nagasvoice, ✓[personal profile] sperrywink
Team Lotsa Bunnies:[personal profile] cleo69, [personal profile] maharetr, [personal profile] kisahawklin, [personal profile] nagasvoice
Team Cosplay in Resin: [personal profile] nagasvoice, [personal profile] lady_krysis, [personal profile] kisahawklin
Team Sniperknife!: [personal profile] lunesque, [personal profile] kisahawklin, [personal profile] omens, [personal profile] lady_krysis, [personal profile] nagasvoice, ✓[personal profile] scheherezhad
Team Gym Rat:[personal profile] scheherezhad, [personal profile] lady_krysis, ✓[personal profile] kisahawklin, [personal profile] omens, [personal profile] lunesque, [personal profile] spurious_sanity, [personal profile] nagasvoice
Team AU Movie: [personal profile] charybdis, [personal profile] kisahawklin, [personal profile] omens, [personal profile] nagasvoice
Team FULL ADORABLE: [personal profile] omens, [personal profile] maharetr, [personal profile] nagasvoice, ✓[personal profile] scheherezhad
Team Push-Café: [personal profile] spurious_sanity, [personal profile] azurian_defiant, [personal profile] kisahawklin, [personal profile] lady_krysis, [personal profile] nagasvoice

[admin post] Admin Post: Posting notes and tutorial

Jul. 28th, 2014 02:52 pm
kate: The Losers team with 2014 Ante Up Big Bang in text (Losers: Big Bang 2014)
[personal profile] kate posting in [community profile] ante_up_losers
This is it, folks! BANG DRAFTS ARE DUE NEXT MONDAY 8/4/14!

Posting notes:

1. Check out the posting tutorial below. Please especially note that you must include [archiveofourown.org profile] kisahawklin as a co-author so I can link and tag the works and teams properly. I will delete myself as co-author before the bang goes live.

2. Drafts must be of required minimum size and must be posted to the AO3 by the end of the day 8/4/14. (We will be checking Tuesday morning 8/5/14, so wherever you are, you have until at least midnight on 8/4/14.)

3. If you need a file (or two or fifteen) hosted, please email it to kisahawklin at gmail. We will happily host until the end of time, or you can move it later if you like. I will send you the link to your items, and if you need help with coding your post so things embed properly, let me know.

4. If you're not done, that's totally cool. If you think you're going to be able to finish by the final posting date (August 29, 2014), then put up what you have and Contact A Mod to let us know the situation. If you need to drop out, please also Contact A Mod and let us know. There is no shame, blame, or judgment here - RL is a thing that happens to all of us, as is creative block, guilt, and any number of other things that can get in the way. We will cheer you on if you need it, we will happily add your work to the collection later, should you finish it, and you are always welcome to post to the current year's Ante Up Scramble at any time.

5. On that note, the Scramble is open! If you have a complementary fanwork that doesn't quite make the minimum size requirements or if you just have something you want to share with everyone that doesn't relate to a bang, feel free to add it to the Scramble! The name of the collection is Ante Up: The Losers Scarmble 2014 (Ante_Up_Scramble_2014). If you type in ante up, you will get a whole list of them - be sure to pick the 2014 Scramble:


POSTING TUTORIAL UNDER HERE! )

Loncon 3: Charlie's worldcon schedule

Jul. 28th, 2014 08:14 pm
[syndicated profile] stross_feed

Posted by Charlie Stross

If you're attending Loncon 3 and want to see me, bookmark this blog entry. I'll update it as things change.

I'll be at Loncon 3 from Thursday August 14th through Monday 18th. Afterwards, I'll be travelling to Dublin for Shamrokon, the Eurocon. (No, I will not be attending Nine Worlds: doing three large conventions on consecutive weekends would be insane.) See below the fold for my schedule for the London trip, including non-convention events. I'll post my Shamrokon schedule in a different blog entry, once it firms up.

Note: the first event is provisional.




Wednesday 13th

6pm, Forbidden Planet, 179 Shaftesbury Ave, London

Titan Books mass signing

(This event is provisional: I'd like to be there, but I'm driving down from Leeds to London that day and my ability to make the signing depends on traffic, hotel check-in, the car not catching fire and exploding en route, and so on. So I'm promising nothing. Your consolation prize if I crash and burn along the way: Cory Doctorow!)




Thursday 14th

LOLcats in Space: Social Media, Humour, and SF Narratives

12:00—13:30, Capital Suite 16 (ExCeL)

This panel will focus on the challenges science fiction authors face in dealing with the plot and setting implications of social media. How do these tools affect the way stories unfold? Can writers represent the playful and ever-changing conventions of social media discussions without writing a novel that looks hopelessly dated before it even hits the shelves, and if so how? Put another way: would Kim Stanley's Robinson's 2312 have been greatly improved by a GIF of a spinning asteroid with a cat in it saying: Asteroid kitteh sez yur lint trap'z fulla cat haerz? So panel. Very discussion. Wow.

The Fermi Paradox in Light of the Kepler Mission

19:00—20:00, Capital Suite 15 (ExCeL)

The Kepler Mission has been hugely successful in searching for exoplanets. It's results have been used as the basis of claims that Earthlike planets lie in the habitable zones of 20% of stars in the galaxy. This would mean that the nearest habitable planet s just 12 light years away. If habitable planets are so common why have we seen no sign of intelligent life spreading from star to star? Does this mean that we really are alone in the universe? The panel considers Kepler and other results and try to come up with more informed answers to Fermi's infamous question: "Where are they?"




Friday 15th

Scientists vs Authors Quiz

22:00—23:30, Capital Suite 14 (ExCeL)

After their narrow defeat at Eastercon, will the Authors get their revenge or will the supremacy of the Scientists go unchallenged? See what SF writers know abotu science and what scientists known about SF at the rematch!




Saturday 16th

Autographing

12:00—13:00, Autographing 9

Literary Beer

20:00—21:00, The Bar (ExCeL) (You will need to sign up in advance: space is limited!)




Sunday 17th

Reading: Charles Stross

15:00—15:30, London Suite 1 (ExCeL)

(And later that evening you will probably definitely be able to find me in the Hugo Losers' Party!)




Monday 18th

Rat's Monkey's Ass

10:00—11:00, Capital Suite 3 (ExCeL)

Swearing in science fiction and fantasy is occasionally a minefield of anachronism, but then, there's often nothing weirder than hearing someone yell "frak". Or even worse, a teenage character that refuses to curse at all. This panel will explore swear words in the genres. What purpose does swearing have within a society? What purpose does it serve in fiction, and how important, or not, are profanities to the narrative? When are invented curses more (or less) effective than real (contemporary or historical) examples, and why?

The Ruling Party

15:00—16:30, Capital Suite 13 (ExCeL)

Is there an Alternative? Increasingly it seems that, no matter which party is elected, they do the same things. Charlie Stross has suggested that no matter who is elected, the Ruling Party, an agglomeration of top level politicians across all parties, always has the controls. Is there any alternative to this? Is this a bad thing? And if it is, what can we do about it?




Other stuff is going to show up here in due course: watch the skies!

eBay: Spray-On Body Suit

Jul. 28th, 2014 02:46 pm
[syndicated profile] photoshop_disasters_feed

Posted by bev

It’s clearly MS Paint week here on PS Disasters!  It’s time to stop letting your six year-olds do your graphic work, guys.

Y_Body_eBay-PSD

Thanks, Livia!  This disaster was found here.

The post eBay: Spray-On Body Suit appeared first on PSD : Photoshop Disasters .

The Outsider Jew on Eid

Jul. 28th, 2014 07:13 am
[syndicated profile] smallpeculiar_feed

Posted by eyeteeth

The Outsider Jew on Eid

Don’t worry, I’m not so far outside that I think Eid is a Jewish holiday. Though I certainly wouldn’t say no if offered any of the many traditional sweets Muslims worldwide will be enjoying over the next few days.

SDCC 2014 CONVENTION EXCLUSIVE

Jul. 28th, 2014 06:49 am
[syndicated profile] machismo_feed

Posted by Coelasquid

mgdmt229b

I was stressing out about finishing a comic this week on top of the Con, and my little brother who is out here visiting for the first time was like “Ha Ha, maybe I should make your comic this week”, and I totally held him to it.

Since Jared is basically Lucas it was very appropriate.

Avengers World #8

Jul. 27th, 2014 11:29 pm
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher posting in [community profile] scans_daily


(From the cover of Mad #16 [October 1954], art H. Kurtzman)

True, the spoof newspaper headline above refers to certain comics becoming "underground" as in "illegal" (this being when Dr. Wertham and friends were trying to accomplish precisely that), as opposed to "countercultural." Even so, actual underground comix creators such as R. Crumb and Art Spiegelman have credited Mad, in its original comic-book format (1952-1954), as a major influence on their work. As Spiegelman put it in his Breakdowns anthology, "Mad warped a generation. In the bland American 1950s [...] [i]t was saying: 'The media--the whole damn adult world--is lying to you...and we here at Mad are part of the media!'"

Dig, dig, dig! )

That's a nope

Jul. 27th, 2014 07:00 pm
resonant: Martin Freeman has his doubts (Default)
[personal profile] resonant
I'm crazy about Tom Hardy, but the new Mad Max movie tripped my torture squick repeatedly in the first half of the trailer.

Oh, well. Maybe some of the slash will be safe to read.

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