kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Two signal-boosts:

First: Free Admission to ITHACON40/Pippi to Ripley3, the Ithaca College Campus, Saturday May 2, 2015 10am-5pm. Special Guests: Bruce Coville and Laura Lee Gulledge. Free kids workshops include: comic drawing workshops, fantasy writing, steampunk art, superhero cape making, star wars armor workshop, Japanese sword, Belly Dance, Pathfinder RPG game, Game Space, and Zombie Ballroom.

ITHACON40 full guest lineup; Pippi to Ripley full program.

Plus a Friday evening event (also free):

7:00-9:00 Panel on Women Making Comics (Klingenstein Lounge, Ithaca College Campus Center), with Laura Lee Gulledge, Morgan McKenzie (published as “Maegan Cook”), and Danielle (Ielle) Palmer.

Pippi to Ripley is where I gave my Mary Sue talk a couple years ago; I can't make it this year, but if you can, check it out.

Second: the Tiptree Award is expanding into Fellowships, to "support the development of new work, in any form or genre, that uses speculative narrative to expand or explore our understanding of gender, especially in its intersections with race, nationality, class, disability, sexuality, age, and other categories of identification and structures of power" ($500 year, two recipients). The application process is being developed in coordination with micha cárdenas; applications are expected to be opened at the upcoming WisCon (May 22-25, 2015).
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Hey writers in all kinds of media: this summer, Chad and the Joint Quantum Institute in Maryland are hosting The Schrödinger Sessions: Science for Science Fiction, which is a three-day workshop on quantum physics for writers (a la the Launch Pad Astronomy Workshop). Check out his blog post for more details; applications will open Friday. Housing and breakfast+lunch will be provided (there may also be a small amount of money for travel support), and diversity is a priority in selecting applicants. Please consider applying if it sounds interesting!
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Reviews and links over at Sindbad Sci-Fi. This expires at 11:59 p.m. today but I'm not clear on time zones. Change the links to .com or .ca as appropriate.

hey SF writers

Thursday, November 13th, 2014 08:21 am
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Chad is putting together a grant proposal to hold a science workshop for SF writers to learn about quantum mechanics, along the lines of the Launch Pad astronomy workshop—housing and food included, and some travel support too. If that sounds something at all of interest to you, please fill out his survey so he can prove to the grant committee that such a workshop would actually get used? Thanks!
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
It's late but I'm jazzed from good conversation and think I can quickly make this presentable before I go to bed.


Strictly speaking, there's no reason an artificial intelligence should express gender in human terms (or at all). Yet in much recent film and TV -- such as WALL-E, Her, Person of Interest, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, and Caprica -- gender and/or sexuality has been integral to the vision of AI. How have such portrayals affected what stories are told? What are their strengths and weaknesses? What would it mean to imagine a genderless AI -- or a queer AI?

Charlie Jane Anders, Abigail Nussbaum, Nic Clarke, Michael Morelli,Jed Hartman

Nic: reviewer, watched all the programs being discussed

Jed: former fiction editor for Strange Horizons, now consumes media; fascinated by gender for long time

Mike: Masters student, giving paper on sexuality in Banks tomorrow, feminist literary critic

Abigail: blogger & reviewer, Reviews editor at SH, writes lot about film & TV from feminist perspective

Charlie Jane: writer, blogger at io9, including AIs in some of work (including one forthcoming resolutely ungendered one)

notes, with no fail that I recognized! )

So this was fun! If I've mis-identified anything let me know.

two quick SFF links

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014 09:50 pm
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Strange Horizons' 2013 SF Count, which calculates the gender and racial distribution of books reviewed and reviewers; they've linked in the comments to the raw data, so you can also double-check their work (the article specifically says corrections are welcome).

The next Vlad Taltos book, Hawk, is up for pre-order on Amazon, with an October 2014 release date; the blurb makes me very hopeful.

two SFF things

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013 12:10 pm
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
1) This year's WFC has hit upon the idea of charging for core parts of its programming, specifically book clubs and Kaffeeklasches. This is, as far as I am aware, unprecedented. Worse, the book clubs are being held in a portion of the hotel that is not wheelchair accessible.

This year's chair expedited a Con or Bust transfer of membership, which I appreciate, and I realize that WFC is important to many as a key industry event, so I do not judge people who go. (Con or Bust still has a free membership left for transfer!) But these are really shitty, exclusionary moves. WFC should reconsider.

(A little more discussion over at Scalzi's.)

2) In happier news, the next bonus content in Strange Horizon's fundraising drive is an essay by Bodhisattva Chattopadhyay titled "Recentering Science Fiction and the Fantastic: What Would a Non-Anglocentric Understanding of SF and Fantasy Look Like?", which I very much want to read, so go donate if you are able! If not, spread the word: SH publishes really good stuff and is working hard to give a platform to diverse voices.
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

I have just purchased, as an e-book, Daniel Keys Moran's The A.I. War: The Big Boost. It looks to be about 70K words and is sold in a zip of multiple DRM-free formats.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

Per Ansible, she has decided to discontinue chemotherapy for cancer.

Her offiical site says that well-wishes sent to meredithxyz at googlemail dot com will reach her.

I just sent a short note saying that Deep Secret is one of my favorite books in the world, which is true, and I'm glad to have said it.

kate_nepveu: Wendy Watson and The Middleman pointing dramatically into the distance (Middleman)

[livejournal.com profile] popelizbet is organizing a Characters of Color in Science Fiction & Fantasy Faceoff, starting at [livejournal.com profile] con_or_bust and concluding at WisCon's Gathering. It's a bracket challenge like Suduvu's Cage Match or [livejournal.com profile] chickfight, except not Death Matches!!!, just a friendly opportunity to showcase some awesome characters and make silly arguments about who's better.

You can nominate people for the eventual bracket now. I'm already enjoying this and think it's going to be a lot of fun. (And as the icon suggests, one of my nominations was Wendy Watson from The Middleman.)

Hugo Nominations

Sunday, April 4th, 2010 05:53 pm
kate_nepveu: green and blue fractal resembling layers of a spaceship (science fiction)
Just pulled out of Convention Reporter's liveblogging without formatting or links, mostly because I wanted them all in one place for my own purposes:

list )

Comments: I have literally never heard of Sawyer's novel nominee, but otherwise this looks . . . not bad. Some stuff I nominated, only one category completely without women if I'm counting right (Pro Artist), at least two people of color in the fiction categories (which AFAIK is one more than last year, um, yay?) and another in the Campbell, some newer/younger/not-the-same names.

I do hope that the short fiction nominees will be able to post their stories online, not just make them available to voters, because I think it's important to the community's discussions and the reputation of the Hugo Awards.

ETA: also up at AussieCon's website, with at least formatting & ballot numbers, though no links.
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Some more Hugo-eligible short fiction that I've read and liked:

"Three Twilight Tales," Jo Walton, Firebirds Soaring (mostly not in bookstores any more, but try your local library)

"The Pirate Captain's Daughter," Yoon Ha Lee, Beneath Ceaseless Skies

"A Journal of Certain Events of Scientific Interest from the First Survey Voyage of the Southern Waters by HMS Ocelot, As Observed by Professor Thaddeus Boswell, DPhil, MSc -or- A Lullaby,", Helen Keeble, Strange Horizons

"And Their Lips Rang with the Sun," Amal El-Mohtar, Strange Horizons

Still reading . . .

And a recommendation: Readability, a browser bookmarklet you can customize to, well, make web pages readable.
kate_nepveu: line drawing of startled cat with vacuum nozzle held to back (fandom)

This is a draft of my ballot for the Fan Writer category in this year's Hugo nominations.

  • Abigail Nussbaum, who blogs at Asking the Wrong Questions (there are links to her reviews at other sites in the sidebar).
  • coffee & ink, who blogs at [personal profile] coffeeandink.
  • K. Tempest Bradford, who blogs all over but principally, for these purposes, at her own site and at The Angry Black Woman.
  • Possibly James Nicoll, who blogs at [livejournal.com profile] james_nicoll; as much as I enjoy his LJ, I tend to think of it more as a news source and discussion place than a source of his writing.
  • Possibly Deepa D., who blogs at [personal profile] deepad; she doesn't post as much as any of the rest of the people on this list, but her posts in January 2009 alone were beautifully written and important.

And though I feel deeply awkward in saying this, the nomination stats indicate that I have previously been nominated in the Fan Writer category by more people than just Chad. So I feel obligated to point out that while my writing here and at my sadly-neglected booklog is non-professional, my writing for Tor.com is professional and thus should not be considered in this regard.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

So I'm trying to actually read some short fiction before nominating for the Hugos this year, partly because I don't have a lot of time and partly because I'm not very enthusiastic about 2009 novels as a whole.

I've seen:

I have a copy of the anthology Federations which I am slowly working my way through. I've put in a library request for Firebirds Soaring because [livejournal.com profile] papersky's story in it is getting a lot of attention.

So: What have you read that you've liked? What have you published that's eligible? (If you're modest, you can post your eligible lists separately from your recommended lists. I want to know what my friends have published.) Either links or names of things I can get from the library, please. I'm not going to go buying back issues of magazines at this point.

Things I've read so far that I've liked—not a draft ballot, note, and I still have a lot of things left to read even from the above-mentioned sources:

  • "Carthago Delenda Est," Genevieve Valentine, Federations
  • "Bespoke," Genevieve Valentine, Strange Horizons (dilemma! I think I like "Carthago" better, but "Bespoke" is getting more buzz, so, strategy-wise . . . )
  • "Different Day," K. Tempest Bradford, Federations
  • "Élan Vital," K. Tempest Bradford, Sybil’s Garage No. 6
  • "Non-Zero Probabilities," N. K. Jemisin, Clarkesworld

So: go read those, and tell me what to read!

(If you absolutely can't stop yourself, go ahead and rec novels too, but I think I'm pretty well up on the possibilities there (things I have read or am reading but have not booklogged yet are in this LibraryThing collection) and I'd really prefer you focus on short fiction.)

kate_nepveu: raven flying across white background (fantasy)

How common are empires in fantasy that are oppressive or unjust (ETA:) and whose oppressions are a plot concern, but are not run by Evil Deities etc. and do not exist to be the opposition for the protagonist's polity? I'm thinking of David Anthony Durham's Acacia trilogy, a book that's not out yet so I'd prefer to avoid discussing it in case it's a spoiler, and . . . ?

I suspect, not very, as fantasy is well-known for its aristocratic preferences, but I thought I should ask.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
When did it get so late? Arrgh.

White is Good, Curves are Great, but Seldom a Purple Face to Be Seen
Rani Graff, Doselle Young (M), Michelle Kendall, N.K. Jemisin
Despite the ubiquity of aliens in a range of pretty colours, SF and fantasy art still seems to be rather averse to the presentation of humans in their full spectrum. How much of this is the market? How much is it thoughtlessness? How much is it a fear of “exoticizing” and exploitation? How much is just old fashioned discrimination?

I came in late and missed all the introductions (which since the participant bios aren't anywhere to be found, even though I know people submitted them, means I must now rely on Google & inference). Young, Kendall, and Jemisin are all African-American; Young writes for American comics; Kendall ([livejournal.com profile] karnythia) is a writer and co-founder of Verb Noire, a new publisher; Jemisin is a writer. Graff is from Israel and the founder of Graff Publishing, a small press.

notes )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

Follow-up to this weekend's post:

The Carl Brandon Society has posted an Open Letter to the SF Community re: Ellison/Bradford Incident:

the Carl Brandon Society wishes to define some basic principles of discourse which were put into question as a result of this exchange. We hope community members will consider and respect these principles in future debates and disagreements.

Go, read, sign in comments if you agree.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

So someone falsely told Harlan Ellison that K. Tempest Bradford was saying Mean Things about him. Instead of saying, "hey, don't be mean," or even "you are a mean person for saying mean things," he goes straight to the racist slurs, calling her an "NWA," a "swineherd," and a woman of "Cuhluh" (which is apparently some horrible attempt at "ghetto" phonetics, rather than a Lovecraft reference). Also says he wants to hit her, for extra classiness, and pulls out his token black friend "discovery" Octavia Butler. (Various comments and dissections of this at Tempest's blog.)

Then he issued what he told other people would be an apology, which is . . . not. That's quoted in full at Tempest's blog; I recommend [livejournal.com profile] yeloson's summary of its full non-apology-ness.

Do not say: oh, it's just Harlan, he's like that: being a jerk doesn't get you a pass on racist comments. (Indeed, if it did, it would be quite the perverse disincentive.) Do not say: oh, it's just Harlan, no-one cares about him anyway: he's still looked up to by many as a major figure in the field, and anyway, I'm not allowed to call out racism by random people? Do not say: oh, it's just Harlan, he's really a nice guy in real life: this is real life.

Look, he called someone a n****r as an insult. You don't get to do that. And it's important that we say, no, you don't get to do that.

References: Ellison's webboard doesn't do permalinks; his first post is timestamped "Thursday, July 23 2009 19:27:11" and is currently on the second page, but will eventually scroll further back. His second is timestamped "Friday, July 24 2009 16:35:36" and is still on the front page.

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