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Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Club - beBee

Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Club

~ 100 buzzes
Science Fiction, Fantasy, Steampunk, Alternate History & any other related genres.
What are you reading? Is it any good? Let's chat!
Buzzes
  1. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    20/11/2016
     The one where Medea saves her kids: lost classics of Greek tragedy  (link)
    The one where Medea saves her kids: lost classics of Greek tragedy (link)by Charlotte Higgins - The GuardianThink of Greek tragedy and we tend to think of sad stories of the death of kings. Or, if not their deaths, then at least their comeuppances: Agamemnon killed in his bath by his wife; Ajax made mad and murderous...
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  2. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    16/11/2016
    Samuel Delany and the Past and Future of Science Fiction (link)
    Samuel Delany and the Past and Future of Science Fiction (link)by Peter Bebergal - the New Yorker.In 1968, Samuel Delany attended the third annual Nebula Awards, presented by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA). At the ceremony that night, “an eminent member of the SFWA,” as Delany...
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  3. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    15/11/2016
    Is Tolkien Really All That Bad?
    Is Tolkien Really All That Bad? Alexa Steele's buzz: How to be a better writer by ignoring writing advice confessed: Years before the movies came out someone gifted me a copy of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit. Intrigued, I sat down to read it that same day.I never finished the first...
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    Comments

    Matt Sweetwood
    16/11/2016 #6 Matt Sweetwood
    "If you're expecting The Greatest Epic Fantasies Ever Written" - When I first read it I was not.. but then I read it, and read it again and again and read the Silmarillian and have come to realize that Tolkien is not only an amazing writer and genius - but has created English Mythology on his own, has inspired everything Fantasy for almost 75 years now and in fact did write "The Greatest Epic Fantasies Ever Written." In my mind he change my life and is the greatest ever. But then again I was a math major. Buzz On! @Virag Gulyas @Javier beBee @Dean Owen @John White, MBA
    Alexa Steele
    15/11/2016 #5 Alexa Steele
    Thank you for this analysis, Paul. I'm sharing the Creative Writers hive.
    Paul Kemner
    15/11/2016 #4 Paul Kemner
    #3 I was planning on putting a comment on your post, but hadn't gotten to it yet. It's interesting to compare the books with the movie openings and see what they 'fixed'.
    Alexa Steele
    15/11/2016 #3 Alexa Steele
    Hi Paul. I happened upon your post in my feed just now and intend to read it in further detail tomorrow. Are you aware that currently tags within posts don't generate a notification? You have to use the comments section to alert someone to your post (and I wouldn't have wanted to miss this 😃)
    Paul Kemner
    15/11/2016 #2 Paul Kemner
    #1 I read them back in the late 60's, and again before the movies came out. I liked them, but I was reading a lot of SF and fantasy so they fit in a larger context for me. Some of the imitation Tolkien that came out at the time was really dreadful- taking up any faults that JRRT had, but losing his redeeming qualities. On the plus side, the success in the US at the time helped a lot of forgotten early fantasy to be republished, like the Ballantine Adult Fantasy line of books edited by Lin Carter.
    One of the interesting things about LOTR- I think it's the first Hazardous Material Quest. Instead of being a quest to find the Sword of Power or the Sacred Badger Pelt, it was a quest to get rid of something dangerous.
    Phillip Hubbell
    15/11/2016 #1 Phillip Hubbell
    I think it was after the third or fourth reading of them that I moved on to his other tales and histories. I had decided I liked them long before the movies. Not a lot of ambiguity about who the good guys are, for the most part. Even the slips in character turn out redeemed in their passing ..save the Stewart of Gondor.
  4. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    06/11/2016
    8 Interesting Afrofuturist Artists (link)
    8 Interesting Afrofuturist Artists (link)I've met some interesting Afrofutuurist SF authors at nearby cons- here are some artists who work in that genre, on...
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  5. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    27/10/2016
    Making the Tarot Literary Again (link)
    Making the Tarot Literary Again (link)by Peter Bebergal - The New Yorker.In 1890, William Butler Yeats joined a recently founded magical fraternity called the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. For years he remained a dedicated member. (When the Golden Dawn split up, about a...
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    Comments

    Paul Kemner
    27/10/2016 #1 Paul Kemner
    I've seen workshops at several of the literary SF conventions that discuss using tarot cards as a plotting tool.
  6. ProducerNathan Lowell

    Nathan Lowell

    07/10/2016
    Starship's Mage
    Starship's MageI don’t remember who turned me onto this series. Probably Deb Geary. Glynn Stewart’s ability to blend science fiction and science fantasy floored me when I read this volume. Like many writers starting in recently, he tried the serial approach and, I...
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    Comments

    Paul Kemner
    15/11/2016 #1 Paul Kemner
    One practice that seems to work these days is to serialize your story on the web, then revise it and offer it for sale. Surprisingly, people will buy a physical copy of something they like, even if they've read it for free on the web.
  7. David Gamella Pérez
    Just wonderful.

    "Hard times are coming, when we’ll be wanting the voices of writers who can see alternatives to how we live now, can see through our fear-stricken society and its obsessive technologies to other ways of being, and even imagine real grounds for hope. We’ll need writers who can remember freedom – poets, visionaries – realists of a larger reality."

    "Books aren’t just commodities; the profit motive is often in conflict with the aims of art. We live in capitalism, its power seems inescapable – but then, so did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings. Resistance and change often begin in art. Very often in our art, the art of words."

    Ursula K. Le Guin, National Book Awards on November 19, 2014.
    Ursula Le Guin
    Ursula Le Guin Ursula K. Le Guin accepts the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters at the 65th National Book Awards on...
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    Comments

    David Gamella Pérez
    14/09/2016 #2 David Gamella Pérez
    #1 I agree with you Jena. She is the best.
    Jena Ball
    14/09/2016 #1 Jena Ball
    How I lover her work. A truly great writer.
  8. ProducerLauren Juzl

    Lauren Juzl

    08/09/2016
    90% of Science Fiction is Crap
    90% of Science Fiction is CrapThere are a few obvious stereotypes of science fiction readers: Lonely men and sad teenage boys, geeks and nerds, sweating in their anoraks. Yet I find it hard to comprehend that so many will write off a whole genre on the basis of a number of...
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    Comments

    Nathan Lowell
    08/10/2016 #25 Nathan Lowell
    Miéville is one of the more interesting Weird writers. I read Perdido Street Station years ago. Good book, but haven't gone back to that well for a long time.

    I swore off trad pubs about 2011. I'll sometimes pick up a book on sale when the publisher runs a promo but I'm not paying $15 for an ebook and I have no use for paper.
    Paul Kemner
    08/10/2016 #24 Paul Kemner
    I just started China Miéville's Kraken. So far, I'd say he's definitely another writer to check out.
    Nathan Lowell
    07/10/2016 #23 Nathan Lowell
    "But this seems to be an opinion that won’t budge."

    Narrow minded generalizations - and every genre has them - seem to say less about the genre than the people offering the criticism.

    Why does it matter? Clearly - as an author - I don't buy into the stereotypes. As a long time SF fan I understand what Sturgeon's Revelation actually means and I happen to agree with it.

    I also think that it's a rule that needs to be applied unilaterally - that is - I get to say which 10% is not-crap for me and you get to say which 10% is not-crap for you. Sometimes we'll overlap and sometimes we won't.

    Isn't that a good thing?
    Lauren Juzl
    10/09/2016 #22 Lauren Juzl
    Thanks for the link @CityVP Manjit, I've always found the Paris review to be an amazing source to discover the complexities and personalities of so many great authors, I'll definitely take a look at Gibson, thank you.
    CityVP Manjit
    10/09/2016 #21 CityVP Manjit
    I have not indulged science fiction novels, I prefer science fiction as a film genre, but I did get into William Gibson. Gibson has become a bit of a cult figure for technologists despite the reality that he barely uses technologies in his actual writing, he writes using that old technology called a typewriter and an manual one at that. The Paris Review interview did a good job of why I think Gibson is a compelling thinker and author http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/6089/the-art-of-fiction-no-211-william-gibson
    Lauren Juzl
    10/09/2016 #19 Lauren Juzl
    Thanks so much @Paul Kemner, it sounds great! Will definitely give it a read. #17
    David Gamella Pérez
    10/09/2016 #18 David Gamella Pérez
    "I won’t stop being proud to admit that my favorite genre is science fiction." 👏👏👏👏Thanks @Lauren Juzl from a proud science fiction reader.
    Paul Kemner
    10/09/2016 #17 Paul Kemner
    You also might want to check out Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie (she was Guest of Honor at Penguicon). That book won the 2014 Hugo award for best novel, the Nebula Award for best novel, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, and the British Science Fiction Association award for best novel, and the Locus Award for best first novel. It's also won awards for best translated novel in Japan and France. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancillary_Justice
    Lauren Juzl
    09/09/2016 #16 Lauren Juzl
    #14 I mentioned both 1984 and Brave New World in the article if you read it, and yes I agree I should have mentioned 2001 a Space Odyssey. As for Atwood, I would class The Handmaid's Tale, Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood, Madaddam and The Heart Goes Last all as scifi, but of course as the post proves, it's completely subjective. As for the title, I believed it was the most important point of the article.
    Jim Murray
    09/09/2016 #15 Jim Murray
    PS: The title of this post feels very clickbaity.
    Jim Murray
    09/09/2016 #14 Jim Murray
    I noticed that conspicuous by their absence are '1984', '2001 A Space Odyssey' and 'Brave New World' which as a sci fi buff, defines the genre pretty completely for me. What's up with that? Re Margaret Atwood. She's really only written one work that could be called sci-fi. She's a literary writer and I can understand completely her not wanting to be typecast in a genre in which show only made one contribution.
    Robert Cormack
    09/09/2016 #13 Robert Cormack
    Quite possibly, Lauren. Margaret has some pretty definite ideas about fiction, especially science fiction. Should we allow for greater latitude, imagining what could be instead of what will be? Sure, why not? None of us will probably be here to know the true answer, anyway, so let's imagine any possibility. The more the mind wanders, the more we discover. Would we have gotten to the moon if it wasn't for Jules Verne? Who knows. He's certainly made us think. That's always healthy.
    Lauren Juzl
    09/09/2016 #12 Lauren Juzl
    #10 And that's what annoys me so much about Atwood @Robert Cormack, what I love about science fiction is how possible most of the content is, and when its not so believable, how exciting it is to imagine if it was. My only problem with Atwood's remarks is that she's trying to use them as a reason to separate her work from science fiction, when really she's just highlighting one of the many complexities of the genre.
    Lauren Juzl
    09/09/2016 #11 Lauren Juzl
    @Aurorasa Sima I think perhaps that would be the 90% that you are referring to, or as @Nick Mlatchkov more kindly put it, the 60%. I don't know if you've read many of the authors I listed or @Paul Kemner and Nick put forward but perhaps that's where you may find the new and innovative ideas you're looking for.
    Robert Cormack
    09/09/2016 #10 Robert Cormack
    I think Atwood makes a good point. Somewhere in science fiction, it's good to find that strand that says, "This could very well happen." In many respects, I think that's what happened with the whole Star Trek phenomenon. On one hand, it's certainly "out there." On the other hand, we feel Gene has prophetic moments that we are seeing in modern reality. If he was a "seeing some future realities," perhaps the rest will be reality, too. That's the joy of the concept for most Trekers. and I think that's the joy for a lot of science fiction readers. Having that thread of prophetic possibility (as with Verne) makes the genre more intriguing and therefore more readable.
    Don Graham
    09/09/2016 #9 Don Graham
    I'm not a big reader. I never was. I can only read as fast as I can say it out loud. But on video... Well that's different. Any Sci Fi I've seen.... Most of it was crap. But I loved Star Trek Deep Space Nine. It was something I could believe may be in the distant future. Babylon 5 would have been good, except the acting was deplorable! But I'll see a Sci Fi movie coming on, and I think "cool... Sci Fi" Then when I watch 15 minutes of it, I usually can't watch anymore.
    Paul Kemner
    09/09/2016 #8 Paul Kemner
    I'd recommend Tim Powers (esp. Last Call, Expiration Date, and Earthquake Weather) and some of his weird history books. Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash and The Diamond Age (worthwhile cyberpunk!) . Connie Willis (esp Doomsday Book). Kage Baker's "The Company" novels. Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan Saga books.
    Paul Kemner
    09/09/2016 #7 Paul Kemner
    There is so much being written today, so it's difficult to find "the good stuff". And mass media (movies/tv) favors space opera and repetitive quest fantasy. I've found that being involved with the "literary" SF cons has helped me find much better stuff. Hearing what impresses authors I'm impressed with (and why they like it) has opened up a lot of vistas.
    Bill Stankiewicz
    09/09/2016 #6 Bill Stankiewicz
    I have read many books & audio of Dr Who, still going for 30 years...
    Nick Mlatchkov
    09/09/2016 #5 Anonymous
    I think the ratio's better 40 good vs 60 crap. Obviously all of I. Asimov, A. C. Clarke go in the 1st.
  9. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    30/08/2016
    An Interesting SETI Candidate in Hercules (link)
    An Interesting SETI Candidate in Hercules (link)(by Paul Gilster)A candidate signal for SETI is a welcome sign that our efforts in that direction may one day pay off. An international team of researchers has announced the detection of “a strong signal in the direction of HD164595” in a...
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  10. Paul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    19/07/2016
    Howard Tayler's review of the rebooted Ghostbusters.
    Paul Kemner
    Schlock Mercenary - Ghostbusters
    www.schlockmercenary.com
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  11. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    25/06/2016
     Does being wealthy make you unethical? New research suggests it does
    Does being wealthy make you unethical? New research suggests it does(2012 article)In this week's PNAS,  researchers at UC Berkeley and the University of Toronto tackle a topic that is bound to spark controversy. I'll let the title speak for itself: "Higher social class predicts increased unethical behavior."...
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  12. ProducerKim Wheeler

    Kim Wheeler

    23/06/2016
    Extract from Jonny Plumb and the Silver SpaceShip...
    Extract from Jonny Plumb and the Silver SpaceShip...'Jonny travels to Pashoo,the home of his star parents in the Silver Arrow Spaceship and phenomenal speed...read onJonny sat back and relaxed into the world’s most comfortable almost invisible chair. Legion and Legend, his ever faithful dogs, were at...
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  13. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    21/06/2016
    Philip K. Dick On Fine-Tuning Your B.S.-Meter To Spot "Pseudo-Realities"
    Philip K. Dick On Fine-Tuning Your B.S.-Meter To Spot "Pseudo-Realities"How can you tell what's real, in a world where huge industries, governments and religions are all trying to force-feed you manufactured realities? Philip K. Dick sums up the challenges of detecting reality in a world that resembles Disneyland,...
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  14. Bill Stankiewicz
    ATTN: BEES I want to share my free book that Ingo Potsch the author gave me. Enjoy for any sci-fi bees

    You can also just google ''Space Force Grunts Second Revised Edition'' and find my book that way, too. It's published at Gutenberg.org, where it is also to be found at the web site. ? (Google: Space Force Grunts Second Revised Edition Gutenberg) And: http://self.gutenberg.org/wplbn0003468637-the-great-galactic-treasure-hunt--a-science-fiction-adventure-by-potsch-ingo.aspx?
    Bill Stankiewicz
    Space Force Grunts : A Science Fiction Adventure, Second, Revised Edition
    www.self.gutenberg.org Space Force Grunts : A Science Fiction Adventure, Second, Revised Edition by Potsch, Ingo. Space Force Grunts (Second, Revised Edition) tells the story of soldiers conscripted to defend the Human Alliance, a civilisation that has spread over...
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    Comments

    Bill Stankiewicz
    13/06/2016 #1 Bill Stankiewicz
    Thanks Pamela L @Pamela L. Williams for finding relevant! Thank you @Paul Kemner for sharing in other hives!!! Regards, Bill Stankiewicz, Savannah Supply Chain Guy.
  15. ProducerPhillip Hubbell

    Phillip Hubbell

    09/06/2016
    Why Time Travel Doesn't Work
    Why Time Travel Doesn't WorkPretty much every science fiction writer in history has considered time travel as a method for altering the present through changes to the past. It is a romanticized view that affecting minor or major events have effect on how the world evolves....
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    Comments

    Michael Eisman
    10/06/2016 #11 Michael Eisman
    A few hundred years ago they thought many things we take for granted today, were impossible. Imagine anti biotics during the black death. In 1000 years time things we say are impossible today will be run of the mill.
    Paul Kemner
    10/06/2016 #10 Paul Kemner
    #9 That's more like driving to the future in the slow lane. ;) And if you were trying to use a neutron star or black hole to get a larger effect, the tides would convert you into a paste. Tides can be a beach. XD
    Michael Eisman
    10/06/2016 #9 Michael Eisman
    Time travel has occurred, but on a tiny scale. Put one atomic clock on an airplane and one on the ground. Gravitational time dilation is in effect time travel. Okay, it is measured in nanoseconds, but has been proved.
    Paul Kemner
    10/06/2016 #8 Paul Kemner
    The main thing is that it's a very useful story-telling trope. So are FTL travel, alternate history, vampires, zombies, and talking hedgehogs.
    Paul Kemner
    10/06/2016 #7 Paul Kemner
    I think Michael Moorcock had some stories where pivotal events were peopled almost entirely by rubbernecking time travelers. Time travel could also have a huge energy budget. My current favorite trope is from the anime series Steins; Gate. SERN has a secret death squad that eliminates anybody who independently invents time travel, or publishes papers too close to the mark.
    Paul Kemner
    10/06/2016 #6 Paul Kemner
    This is true for SF universes where there's a single timeline, but not others. With branching timelines, you change history in a new branch, which has its own moral implications.
    Bill Stankiewicz
    10/06/2016 #5 Bill Stankiewicz
    #4 LOL :)
    Lisa Gallagher
    10/06/2016 #4 Lisa Gallagher
    #3 ha, @Bill Stankiewicz and I was just about to say I have a piece of land to sell you which I bought back in 1900- I never increased the price. Sadly, the Ocean swallowed it.
    Bill Stankiewicz
    10/06/2016 #3 Bill Stankiewicz
    Phillip @Phillip Hubbell & Lisa Gallagher, please note, time travel does work. It started in 1963 with Dr Who in the UK, I have some cd's from the show I can send you......just joking, time to go. regards, Bill Stankiewicz
    Lisa Gallagher
    10/06/2016 #2 Lisa Gallagher
    Very interesting read @Phillip Hubbell. "Since everyone experiences a view of time from the perch of their conscious present, any changes to history caused by time travelers has already occurred. " And as you noted there would not be any proof. I would love to read the book, "The Lathe of Heaven," I always find interest in topics many don't discuss IE: Alternate realities.
  16. ProducerPaul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    04/06/2016
    Forgotten anime: Dragon's Heaven (1988)
    Forgotten anime: Dragon's Heaven (1988)Here's an OVA you're not likely to find outside of youtube or a streaming site: Dragon's Heaven. (It took me a while to find it, because I'd heard the title as "Dragon Seven" :pIt's the story of an AI mech, created to work with a human pilot to...
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  17. Paul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    31/05/2016
    This year's Nebula Awards:

    "This weekend's winners reflect many different types of diversity beyond gender. Half are women of color, half are self-identified queer women – which mirrors the overall diversity of the ballot. 24 out of the 34 works nominated for the award were written by women from multiple racial and cultural backgrounds and a spectrum of sexual orientations. Of the 10 works by men, five of them were written by people of color and queer authors."

    http://www.npr.org/2016/05/16/478269681/people-want-these-stories-women-win-big-at-the-nebula-awards
    Paul Kemner
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  18. Paul Kemner

    Paul Kemner

    24/05/2016
    I've been listening to audiobooks of Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series. He's best known for his Harry Dresden urban fantasy, but this is a high fantasy series, I'm on book 5- it's nicely paced and involving, and the ante gets higher with each book.

    I found the following on wikipedia:

    "The inspiration for the series came from a bet Jim was challenged to by a member of the Del Rey Online Writer’s Workshop. The challenger bet that Jim could not write a good story based on a lame idea, and Jim countered that he could do it using two lame ideas of the challenger’s choosing. The “lame” ideas given were “Lost Roman Legion", and “Pokémon”.
    Paul Kemner
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