For some time I have been playing with the idea of writing my own futuristic fantasy stories. This grew from my disappointment in how the stories from a popular sci-fi franchise are written and, in fact, how space operas in general are written. I’d like them to be a bit harder. Not necessarily in the sense of rocket science hard, which is what you may be thinking, but with other plot elements, from warfare, exploration, pacing, economy, the spatial and time span of these stories, the fact that in most you don’t even feel like the vastness of space matters, etc.
This is the full interview with the British-American writer James L. Cunningham. It first appeared on All-Men’s Adventure Magazine in 1935. The original interview was half as long and its most “juicy” aspects had been cut off, probably out of fear of upsetting the moral authorities that back then were keeping a close eye on this kind of magazines. The writer died later that year from cancer, which could explain his strangely forthcoming and open answers. After Monroe Webster, the editor and interviewer, died in 1965, the original interview with lines marking the parts to cut out was found among his papers.
That’s from the Terror at 5 1/2 Feet, from The Simpsons episode Treehouse of Horror IV. It’s known that that story is based on The Twilights Zone’s Nightmare at 20,000 Feet, although there the gremlin looks a bit different.
But I was looking for non-awful sci-fi short stories (pre-decline Hugo short story nominees, to be precise) and came across this old Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine cover. It could be a coincidence, but I wonder if this inspired them to some degree when they designed the gremlin:
*Kyphosis, actually, but that doesn’t sound that funny.
I saw this image yesterday, and I chuckled immediately. It was a reflexive laughter, and it took me awhile to understand what exactly had triggered my reaction.
As I said, I laughed when I saw this, even before I had consciously processed what I had seen. A few minutes of heavy thunkin’ later, I realized what was wrong: they look ridiculous while trying to look cool, which is the worst kind of ridiculousness that exists.
There is a type of news or news article that reflect the current zeitgeist so well that they deserve their own analysis.
Coffee farmers, buyers, roasters, retailers and baristas from around the world are gathering in Seattle this week to show off their wares, compete in the U.S. Coffee Championships and do business.
And nothing goes better with coffee than conversation.At an industry symposium on the sidelines of the Specialty Coffee Expo in Seattle, talk focused on challenges ranging from climate change and consolidation to the industry’s struggles with equity, diversity and inclusion up and down the supply chain.The arrests of two black men in a Philadelphia Starbucks provided immediate context.[blablabla]Other speakers pointed to an economic reason to welcome more under-represented minority groups into the coffee business, particularly as the industry looks for its next wave of growth. In the U.S., young, ethnic minorities represent a huge and growing market of would-be specialty coffee drinkers, but they may not see themselves reflected in the industry, said Phyllis Johnson, president of BD Imports.How should the industry increase coffee consumption among African Americans and other minority groups, Johnson asked. Her answer: “Hire them.”
- You definitely have a problem, Houston.
Ex-Houston 911 operator guilty of hanging up thousands of callers – CBS News 19.04.2018
A former 911 operator in Houston has been found guilty of hanging up on people calling for emergency services. Jurors on Wednesday found 44-year-old Crenshanda Williams guilty of interference with emergency telephone calls, a misdemeanor.
She was sentenced to 10 days in jail and 18 months of probation.
Prosecutors from the Harris County district attorney’s office say she worked as a 911 operator for a year and a half, ending in 2016. Records showed that thousands of calls lasting less than 20 seconds were attributed to her hanging up. She was fired after a supervisor noticed the unusual number of “short calls,”
- Strange mesoamerican rave gone wrong (or is it “right”?)
I’m feeling sick today, so here is a few nauseating news from an equally diseased world:
1. Army of fragmented personalities forget to eat, they are still fat.
Couple have more than 400 personalities between them – and struggle with everyday tasks because they’re ‘all fighting to be heard’ – The Mirror 28.03.2018
[…] for Kai, 27, and Franz, 26, a simple shop is almost impossible because there are dozens of other people getting involved with the decision making.
They have both been diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder , formally known as multiple personality disorder, and between them have over 400 personas, called ‘alters’.
There is no telling when alters will appear and they can be male, female, young or old and have accents from all over the world, each with their ownbackstoryy.
[…] Eventually, Franz’s alter Damien emerges and cooks them a meal. Sometimes the couple have gone a whole day without eating because the wrong alters are present.
You know, when I said DID would be the next frontier of the oppressed, I WAS JOKING.
1. French officer who swapped places with a hostage in terror attack dies – CNN 24.03.2018
A police officer who swapped places with a female hostage during an attack by an ISIS supporter on a supermarket in southern France has died of his wounds, French authorities said.Lt. Col. Arnaud Beltrame, 45, was shot in the neck Friday after offering to take the place of a woman during a gunman’s assault on the Super U supermarket in Trèbes.[…]Last year Beltrame was appointed deputy commander of the anti-terror police in the Aude region.According to the newspaper La Dépêche du Midi, Beltrame led a simulated terror attack in December on a supermarket for training purposes, similar to the one Friday in which he lost his life.