a zoo in hell


On a roll: 5.29.2011

2000 Ancient Tombs, a gothy-ethereal-ambient band, has a collection of music inspired by their favorite horror stories. There are some real moments of musical distinction which get the collection beyond cookie-cutter ambient drone. I get the impression their production is a little DIY, and something like this could stand a little more production value.

The turf battle between genre and literary writers has been pretty active over the last week.  Rose Fox, at Publisher's Weekly, reacts to the Washington Post SFWA article. Jeff Vandermeer comments on the Iain Banks article I posted last week. New York Times has a positive review of Albert Brooks' dystopian satire 2030.

I think the essay "Lies SF Fans Tell Themselves" by Guy Lasson offers an important if not stated point in this debate. As a writer, I wear a genre label with pride, but I also aim to be slipstream. I see genre writing as writing which deals with the tropes and expectations of the form, but does not seek to comment on or attack things which are beyond the traditional concerns. Novels become "slipstream" or "literary"when they acknowledge they are trying to express something more than the fetishes of genre. Is all genre writing superficial? No, of course not. There is a fannish limitation on the genre, as much as we'd like to think otherwise. I've spent almost a decade trying to get SF con-goers to see foreign fantasy films with only limited success, I know all about this.

Ann Vandermeer offers her explanation of what a good "weird" story is. She edits the flagship publication for weird stories, so it's worth paying attention to.

A couple of tidbits in aeriel surviellance news. Here's how Area 51 used models to fool Soviet spy satellites. An eye in the sky found an entire buried city in Egypt.

Finally, here's a Star Wars related story. I think the first comment sums my feelings up nicely, but it is also interesting that Lucasfilm might make a significant investment in series production. I think the unstated concern in the article isn't about the "how" of television production, but more of the "where" and "why". What will TV look like in a year or two? Will it even exist or matter?