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The Offworld Report: September

01/10/2002. Contributed by Stephen Hunt

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A bumper crop of offworld goodies, including an interview with Nancy Kress, short fiction by Ursula K. Le Guin, and the godfather of US science fiction, Charles N. Brown, speaking out about a life serving in the trenches of the fantastic.

October 2002's sideways glance at all that is new and interesting 'offworld', far away from the comfortable orbit of the 'Nest.

Charles N. Brown: The Joy of SF
Charley Brown, head honcho at Locus magazine - now supposedly semi-retired - ruminates on his long life in science fiction since the 1950s.

An interesting, if slightly long and mawkish, look back from the US Godfather of SF.

Hugo Award Winners 2002
Locus lists all the various award winners for the 2002 Hugos. Best novel went to 'American Gods', by the vastly over-rated Neil Gaiman. Why?

The Drone Armies Are Coming
Someone at the Office of Naval Research has obviously been working under the influence of the Phantom Menace flick, as those crazy people over at the military industrial complex are now working on a drone army looking to go onstream by 2020.

Ghost Ship
Spooky movie where a liner thought lost in the 1940s is suddenly discovered floating in the ocean. Scared witless? You will be after you've downloaded and watched this Quicktime trailer.

Matrix Reloaded
Early teaser trailer for the sequel to the incredible Matrix movie. Quicktime plug-in required to watch.

The State We're in
Jonathan Cowie looks at the book sales figures for the UK SFF market and ponders the disparity between SF and fantasy retail volumes. Fantasy sells way more than SF, but don't tell Harry Potter.

Nemesis
The new trailer for the film Star Trek Nemesis - possibly the last outing for the Next Generation crew. Well, at least Jon Luc Picard won't need to wear a wig. Quicktime plug-in required to watch.

The Duke of Uranium
A bit of a departure for serious cyberpunk author John Barnes - as JB moves into space-opera; and from a quick skim of the book, fairly YA-oriented space opera at that. Make you own mind up, as Time Warner have stuck up a sample chapter for you Barnes fans out there.

Treasure Planet
Disney's cartoon remake of Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island - set in space! The Lion King, we suspect it isn't. Quicktime plug-in required to watch.

Die Another Day
Ah the new trailer for the latest Bond flick come in Mr Dowload, we've been expecting you. Quicktime plug-in is, as always, is required to watch.

A Conversation With Karen Michalson
The author of the SF novel 'Enemy Glory' gets interviewed about her life and works. The 'Nest's tip of the month keep an eye out on Ms Michalson. She's going to be one of the great ones!

Elven Blades and Zero-G Ki: The Evolution of Martial Arts in SF and Fantasy
Everyone was Kung Fu fighting? According to this flipping article, they are. A sly look at the use of martial arts in SFF books, movies and TV; material ranging from Lord of the Rings to Star Trek.

Ursula K. Le Guin's The Seasons of the Ansarac
Short fiction by the grande 'ol dame of the field. She warns: If you are not bringing a sense of humor with you when reading "The Seasons of the Ansarac," be very careful not to drop it on your foot. A little off the wall, but then online SF does tend to get used as a dumping ground for this kind of material.

The Theory of Evolution for Robots?
Making a robot that can fly like a bird is beyond the reach of current technology. But making a robot that can teach itself to fly? Well, it seems that might just be possible.

Sci-Fi Women Want Brains and Brawn!
Female science-fiction fans didn't often see strong women in their favorite childhood books, but that's changing. And with more scientists penning novels, there's sounder science in the fiction too.

Filling in the Black Hole Blank
Astronomers may have hit the black hole jackpot as scientists discover small, medium-sized and enormous black holes.

Nancy Kress Interviewed
The author of 'Probability Space' on her books and how our Nancy only became a science fiction novelist because she failed at embroidery and quilting. Well, the quilting world's loss if definitely SFF's gain. She's a game bird, alright.

Antimatter takes a step nearer to reality
European scientists produce significant amounts of antimatter, which will now allow them to test out a few of the basic antimatter theories in physics. Warp Factor One if you please, Mr ESA researcher.

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