Scifi and fantasy features from 2005.

Just in | Library of features 

An interview with Robert J. Sawyer
01/12/2005. You'd think science fiction author Robert J. Sawyer's books would be easy to find in the UK, says Uncle Geoff. But on British bookshelves they're rare, which is unfortunate because based on the ones Geoff has read, Sawyer really is an author that needs more recognition over here.

Fantasy authors Amber Benson and Christopher Golden talk about their new novel, Ghosts Of Albion
01/12/2005. In Ghosts of Albion: Accursed, it is 1838. William and Tamara Swift inherit a startling legacy from their dying grandfather, transforming them into the Protectors of Albion, mystical defenders of the soul of England. But the shocked, neophyte sorcerers also inherit unique allies in their battle against the dark forces. Fighting alongside them are the famous - even infamous - Ghosts of Albion: Lord Byron, Queen Bodicea, and Lord Admiral Nelson.

John Birmingham interview
01/12/2005. An interview with John Birmingham, author of science fiction thriller Designated Targets - where the modern US military time travels back to world war two by accident and all havoc breaks loose.

Feed the cat
01/12/2005. Short fiction from the magical yet murderous pen of Geoff Willmetts. Do you love cats? Best you don't read this story, then, dear reader.

Boys and girls and books
01/12/2005. At Novacon a couple of weekends ago there was a panel on the best books with which to introduce young readers to SF. Peter Weston, Farah Mendlesohn, Claire Brialey and Julia Daly came up with a wide variety of suggestions. From the floor, Scots science fiction author Ken Macleod questioned why anyone would want to introduce young readers to SF in the first place!

Act of faith
01/12/2005. The only thing we can all really contribute positively towards, muses Uncle Geoff, is the reduction in global warming - to show the next generation that there was once a time when global dimming didn't also make the skies darker when cloudy. Don't forget to be ecology conscious as part of your new year's resolutions. Your world needs you.

Are movies better than ever?
01/12/2005. Last month I was at the Toronto International Film Festival. A week or so before the festival we go through a process of choosing the films that we wanted to see. For years I had been picking films by whether the film sounded good or not. Some turned out to be good, and some were stinkers.

Interview with David Gemmell author of Troy: Lord Of The Silver Bow
01/11/2005. Fantasy author David Gemmell on how inspiration comes from many sources, how so little is really known about Bronze Age Greece, and why his latest novel doesn't follow either Virgil or Homer: it follows Gemmell!

An interview with Andy Remic
01/11/2005. Why SFF author Remic wanted to write James Bond on acid, how a covert organisation working for the good of mankind might actually work, and the joys to be found in penning fast-paced hardcore military sci-fi thrillers.

The Big Bag Never Opened
01/11/2005. Some time in the 1980s The Guardian, then so notorious for misprints that it was nicknamed The Grauniad, published an article that referred to 'the big bag theory' of the origin of the universe, recalls Scots science fiction author Ken Macleod. A letter pointing out this mistake was sportingly illustrated with a cartoon of the Greek goddess Cornucopia, shaking the stars and galaxies out of a big bag.

My take on Firefly
01/11/2005. A man sits on a sand dune. There appears to be nobody around for many miles of desert in any direction. That may be a good thing because the man is stark naked. There is no sign of his clothing anywhere. The man is apparently reflecting on the events that brought him here. "That went well." You immediately find yourself wondering what has happened and where he would have been and in what state if things had not gone so well. This is the beginning of an episode of the TV series Firefly.

Words without understanding are just gibberish
01/11/2005. Or keeping the wolf from the door by equipping the sheep with teeth. Yes, it's November's editorial from Uncle Geoff.

San Diego Comicon diary
01/10/2005. I am now absolutely positive that nothing could have properly prepared me for the craziness that is San Diego Comicon. Prior to leaving for San Diego, I was both nervous and anxious about attending the convention. Well, I was more scared than nervous. All I had been hearing for the past months was how insane Comicon was.

Interview with Richard K. Morgan, author of Woken Furies
01/10/2005. Morgan on the art of science fiction noir, his three Kovacs series books - Altered Carbon, Broken Angels, Woken Furies - and the possiblity of a new Warner Brothers movie based on the SF novels.

Interview with Terry Brooks
01/10/2005. Brooks chats about his new fantasy novel, Straken, muses about the High Druid of Shannara trilogy reaching its natural conclusion, and tells us about penning a short story for Robert Silverberg's Legends II anthology.

Warning: This article contains spoilers
01/10/2005. Reviewing films for Mark is a game with certain rules. In fact, he has his own three laws of reviewing films. They are, he muses, yet another set of three laws inspired by Asimov's Three Laws of Robotics.

Everything I ever needed to know about being in the Time Patrol I learned from cheating at Solitaire
01/10/2005. Poul Anderson wrote a series of stories about a group of time policemen called the Time Patrol. They go back in time and change history or protect history from being changed. I have had a chance to actually experiment with going back in time and seeing how well I can make things right. It comes from an unexpected source.

Jim Butcher interview
01/10/2005. Horror and dark fantasy author Jim Butcher on why his world of the Dresden Files is more or less our world, only with all kinds of paranormal and preternatural and quasi-magical things lurking in the shadows and around the corners, and on why his hero is intended to be as much Sherlock Holmes as Gandalf, as much Columbo as Merlin.

Attending a WorldCon: in at the deep end
01/10/2005. Pauline Morgan reports back from Interaction, the 63rd World Science Fiction Convention which was held in Glasgow from 4th to 8th August 2005. There was much that grabbed her fancy, but she ponders that attending your first Science Fiction Convention can be a daunting prospect.

Investing futures in Science Fiction
01/10/2005. It seems every other of my editorials is being dominated by some world crisis or another these days, says Uncle Geoff. Be it war, natural or unnatural catastrophe or something in between, it doesn't feel right to just glibly go on about some unrelated subject as if nothing has happened. SF might be seen as escapism by outsiders but on many of its levels, it's an examination of our current reality which seems to be on the brink of falling apart bit by bit as I write which oddly enough doesn't quite reflect in our fiction.

Forbidden Power
01/09/2005. Mark considers a recent article which rails against the film industry repeatedly doing versions of the Frankenstein myth in films. Science fiction films in which a mad scientist or a whole scientific community overstep the bounds to knowledge that God has put in placed in His Wisdom. They invent a new life form or drill a hole though the crust of the Earth or clone a dinosaur. In a sense these are all Frankenstein myths reframed.

Freedom is a three-edged sword
01/09/2005. The definition of the term 'freedom' is rather diverse, especially dependent on how you pre-fix it, says Uncle Geoff. There's my freedom, your freedom and country freedom. Often as not, at least in the western world, they might even mean the same thing as long as your personal freedom does not infringe on the freedom of other people.

Troy Denning Interview
01/09/2005. When Del Rey asked author Troy Denning to write a trilogy of Star Wars novels featuring the classic heroes - Princess Leia, Han Solo, and Luke Skywalker - he knew he had a tough act to follow.

Is serious the new fannish?
01/09/2005. A few weekends ago SF author Ken Macleod was at Interaction, the 63rd World Science Fiction Convention (the Worldcon) in Glasgow. The venue was the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre with its associated hotels. Constructed on a formerly derelict stretch of Clyde shore, the SEC and the Science Park across the water from it look like some spaceport of the future.

Charles Stross interview
01/09/2005. Science fiction author Charles Stross talks about his novels Singularity Sky and Iron Sunrise, how he tries to fit his working hours in around his social life, rather than vice versa, and why British SF is currently experiencing a renaissance of a kind that has not been seen since the new wave of the 1960s.

Free will and peace are the aims of the individual
01/08/2005. Now this is a rare occurrence for Uncle Geoff. Having to re-write his editorial based on rapidly updating news and then hoping the relevance won't be out of date too soon. He would also point out that the material he is leaving out is probably worthy of detailed editorials somewhere down the line. Yes, let's talk religion, SFF fans.

Interview with Orson Scott Card
01/08/2005. The science fiction author talks about his new novel Magic Street and what gives a white male, the insight and experience to write about African-American characters in a black community; where he got his ideas for Magic Street, and the steps he took to avoid stumbling into stereotype.

Tricia Sullivan gets Double Vision
01/08/2005. Science fiction author Tricia Sullivan discusses her latest novel, Double Vision, why she envies authors who talk of their characters 'surprising' them by their actions, and why she's not a big fan of formal thought as the road to enlightenment.

When Life Means Life
01/08/2005. Flash fiction from the pen of by GF Willmetts. It's tough being a jail bird - no matter what dimension you're doing your time in.

Fantastic Four (Frank's Take)
01/08/2005. In director Tim Storyís (Barbershop, Taxi) banally bloated sci-fi fantasy Fantastic Four, the storytelling is so anemically conceived that this soulless superhero saga has all the thrilling vibes of an elevator ride at your local shopping mall, says Frank.

Sailing Starry Seas
01/08/2005. Early fantasies of space travel envisioned ships pulled by teams of birds or versions of balloons, says Mark. Some fantastic accounts of voyages into space pictured it being on flying ships like the sailing ships in the seas. They were supposedly being propelled by winds in space.

From Merlot to Cockfosters
01/08/2005. There is a law called The Law of Unintended Consequences, says Mark. According to this law almost all human actions have at least one unintended consequence. What ever you do, it will have additional side effects that you did not intend. Sociologist Robert K. Merton's name is associated with this rule, though Mark remembers musing about it back when he was in high school and before it was ever spelled out for him.

Serenity Happens
01/07/2005. Same Sith, different day. Move over George Lucas, there's a new Master in town - Joss Whedon. The creator of television hits, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel has a new movie, Serenity, due to premiere on September 30th, 2005.

Russell T Davies interview
01/07/2005. Here, Russell T Davies - award-winning writer and executive producer of Doctor Who - gives an exclusive insight into the Christmas 2005 episode and reveals why 'pigeon-holing' in his early career as a writer in children's television made the transition into adult television difficult.

R. Scott Bakker Interview
01/07/2005. He's an author and a student of history, philosophy, literature and ancient languages. He's unfeasibly clever and he's written one of the great fantasy debuts of recent years. He's R. Scott Bakker and he's talking.

Batman Begins: Mark's Take
01/07/2005. Batman Begins re-invents Batman for the screen and still has time to comment on the story of a certain other recent blockbuster. Nolan's and Goyler's script is not perfect, but it has many very interesting ideas and touches. The film sports an all-star cast led by Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne - soon to be Batman.

The Lucas Loophole
01/07/2005. I read a review of the "Star Wars" series that complained about the absurdity of the whole thing. The author had a number of complaints about characters and motivations, all very much matters of taste. Only one complaint had real substance. The writer complained that the whole idea of a galactic civilization is absurd. The distances are too great. People seem to flit around between star systems as if they were states in the United States. That seems on the face of it absurd.

Phantoms of the Opera: A Survey of Adaptations
01/07/2005. Imagine a man born with the sort of genius and universal mind that Goethe had, but also born with a hideous face that sends people away screaming, says Mark. Even Erik's mother is terrified by the face of her own son. Erik spent his early years in a freak show, but still found time to develop his keen mind, perhaps more so because he could have no social life.

Eric Flint interview: The Rivers of War
01/07/2005. The author talks about why The Rivers of War isnít his first alternate history by any means, it is his first without a science fiction or fantasy element to it. He explains the change of pace.

Born-Again Cynic
01/07/2005. Whether it's the 1933 Loch Ness Monster Surgeon's photograph actually being a model or the 60s Big Foot film footage actually a woman in a gorilla suit from a relative who couldn't hold a camera on horseback but made it more spontaneous by the effect, one thing that comes out of it is that even experts can be taken in by fakes. Is it any wonder that it's harder to convince people of anything out of the ordinary these days might be the real thing?

Time For A Change: The Return Of Doctor Who
01/07/2005. For the past 13 weeks, there has been a resurgence in British Science Fiction TV. Oddly enough, where in the 60s 'Star Trek' started to raise the TV media standard and in the late 70s, films with the 'Star Wars' trilogy that had an adverse effect on the expectations on BBC stalwart 'Doctor Who', these are now on their last legs as this regeneration comes up again.

Chekhov's Gun
01/06/2005. Chekhov's gun is a literary weapon, says science fiction author Charles Stross; "If in the first act you have hung a pistol on the wall, then in the following one it should be fired. Otherwise don't put it there."

Cast Interviews: Doctor Who: The Empty Child
01/06/2005. In episode nine of Doctor Who - The Empty Child, first shown on BBC ONE on Saturday 21 May - The Doctor and Rose travel back in time to 1941 in part one of an action-packed adventure written by Steven Moffat.

Coffee Makes You Feel Alive
01/06/2005. Flash fiction from the pen of Lori L. E. Simpson.

The scientist's apprentice
01/06/2005. The Jurassic marine crocodile Metriorhynchus was a lithe and elegant beast, says Scottish science fiction author Ken Macleod. We know a fair bit about it, including that it sometimes suffered from arthritis.

A Time of Endings: Star Trek
01/06/2005. Well, last week an era came to an end when the last episode of Star Trek was broadcast. I suppose it is time to think about my take on the series. I remember when nobody had heard about Star Trek and TV Guide had on their television news page that there would be a new program that would be a sort of Wagon Train to the Stars.

Do the Math
01/06/2005. A phrase you hear frequently is "do the math." The sort of thing is "One man. Three women. Do the math." Wow. Sounds impressive, huh? Usually when you hear or read that there is no mathematics whatsoever to do. Or if there is mathematics to do, it is second grade arithmetic. There is a one third of a man per woman. So what does that mean? They aren't going to divide him up.

Kelley Armstrong Interview
01/06/2005. Author Kelley Armstrong talks about her last book, Industrial Magic, why supernatural fiction is so popular, and why if you write characters that don't ever surprise you, you may not yet have fully-formed characters.

Simon Pegg Interview
01/06/2005. Episode Seven of Doctor Who arrives ... entitled The Long Game. In the far future, Adam Mitchell discovers that life as a Time Lord's companion isn't as easy as it looks, in Russell T Davies' adventure through time and space.

Would we be happy with utopia?
01/06/2005. This month, Geoff proves utopia ainít a nice place to be. Neither is a distopia come to that.

The Barry Hoffman/Gauntlet Books Publisher Interview
01/05/2005. Barry Hoffman is the publisher of Gauntlet Books, a limited book edition company with the likes of Richard Matheson, Robert Bloch and the works of Rod Serling coming off their presses. We've reviewed some of his books on our website and now its time to meet the man himself.

K.J. Parker Interview
01/05/2005. For the second month running, we have an interview with the current Orbit Author of the Month. We hope you enjoy this fireside chat with the very talented K.J. Parker.

Space Station Hinckley
01/05/2005. Author Ken Macleod spent the Easter weekend at the Hinckley Island Hotel, as one of the Guests of Honour at Paragon 2, this year's Eastercon or British National Science Fiction Convention.

Not a good word to say
01/05/2005. A fixture of SF conventions is the Dealers' Room, says author Ken Macleod. It's mostly books, of course, and these mostly second-hand, but you can also find craftwork, from real deadly daggers to dragon-patterned hairclips; jewellery and embroidery, T-shirts and tiaras. But it's mostly books.

JW Rinzler interviewed
01/05/2005. An interview with J.W. Rinzler, author of The Art of Star Wars and The Making of Star Wars Revenge of the Sith.

Matthew Stover interviewed
01/05/2005. An interview with Matthew Stover, author of Star Wars Revenge of the Sith.

This Year's Nebula Award Nominees
01/05/2005. Some of this may be old new to most of our readers, but we have a lot of new readers who are not aware of the basic lore of science fiction, says Mark. The Science Fiction Writers Of America will award the Nebula Awards the last weekend of this month. Like the Hugos the Nebulas are awarded annually but unlike the Hugos, an item is eligible for two years, not one.

Interview with Simon Callow
01/05/2005. When the new series of Doctor Who needed an actor to play Charles Dickens alongside everyone's favourite Time Lord, there was only ever one man in the frame.

Interview with Robert Shearman
01/05/2005. Beneath the Salt Plains of Utah, billionaire collector Henry Van Statten holds the last relic of an alien race. When the Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) and Rose (Billie Piper) investigate, they discover that the Doctor's oldest and most deadly enemy is about to break free ... we sense dalek trouble ahead!

Interview with Mark Gatiss
01/05/2005. The Doctor comes face-to-face with Charles Dickens in the new series as he battles against re-animated corpses and shimmering blue entities up to no good in Cardiff in 1869 - right up writer Mark Gatiss's street, in fact.

Interview with Bruno Langley
01/05/2005. From Weatherfield to a secretive bunker in Utah where Doctor Who is just the latest alien to be captured as an exhibit is quite a journey, but for former Coronation Street star Bruno Langley it is all in a day's work.

Interview with Nicholas Briggs
01/05/2005. How to help make the audience feel sorry for a Dalek - that was the challenge facing voice actor Nicholas Briggs, as the new series of Doctor Who revives the Doctor's most notorious enemy. Our Nick can croak EXTERMINATE with the best of them.

Why do I love Science Fiction? Why do you love Science Fiction?
01/05/2005. Uncle Geoff looks at why we are transient SF viewers/readers and it all goes back to how we all started our science fiction interest in the first place.

In love with the Meq
01/04/2005. As editor-in-chief at Del Rey, Betsy Mitchell says she approaches submissions of first novels as the porcupine approaches its mate: gingerly, very gingerly.

James Luceno Interview: Navigating the Labyrinth of Evil
01/04/2005. Making the wait for Episode III's cinematic debut easier for Star Wars fans is Del Rey's release of Labyrinth of Evil, the new Star Wars novel that directly ties into the beginning of Episode III. Author James Luceno writes this new adventure, with access to detailed Episode III information from Lucasfilm, ensuring an authoritative prelude to the final Star Wars chapter.

An interview with Stephen Baxter
01/04/2005. The co-author of Sunstorm, British science fiction author Stephen Baxter, talks about his latest collaboration with fellow writer Sir Arthur C. Clarke.

Scott Westerfeld Interview
01/04/2005. Scott Westerfeld, whose debut novel 'The Risen Empire' is released this month by book publisher Orbit drops in for a chat. He found himself wanting to write an old-fashioned space opera with new-fashioned nanotech, programmable matter and information warfare.

Interesting Thoughts
01/04/2005. The Internet is more like a brain, and the Web more like a mind, than anything so far implemented on a single computer, says Scots science fiction author Ken Macleod. This far-from-original idea suggests some interesting thoughts, about, well, interesting thoughts.

Brussels International Festival of Fantastic Film - March 11th-26th 2005
01/04/2005. The nearly month-long festival is a mecca for fans of the dark, odd and unusual, and thereís a film line-up to suit every palate: sci-fi, anime, psychological thriller, campy horror, and films which can only be classified as indefinable.

Categorisation Kak
01/04/2005. or every science fiction and fantasy award category deserves an even playing field ... a discussion point by GF Willmetts.

Commander Eileen Collins Interview
01/04/2005. When the crew members of the Space Shuttle Discovery lift off from NASA's Kennedy Space Center, they'll be supported by two years of hard work by tens of thousands of people determined to make the Space Shuttle safer. NASA has upgraded flight hardware, as well as visual tracking and inspection equipment, to ensure the Return to Flight mission is successful. Its flight commander Eileen Collins talks about this and more.

Billie Piper Interview
01/04/2005. When Billie landed the part of Rose Tyler, the latest in a long line of time-travelling companions for the Doctor, it meant more than anything in her career to date - including seeing her debut single top the charts.

Christopher Eccleston Interview
01/04/2005. Just as the Doctor has done so many times down the years, Christopher Eccleston tells you how he embarked on a journey into the unknown when he heard a new series of Doctor Who adventures was being planned.

Russell T Davies Interview
01/04/2005. Persistence paid off, Russell T Davies tells how when, after refusing to work on anything for the BBC unless it was the return of Doctor Who, his wish finally came true.

What difference does make? [And no, that is not grammatically incorrect.]
01/04/2005. Of all the species on this planet, humans could probably be considered the most diverse within a single species without actually saying there are sub-species. A zebra is still a striped horse. All giraffes have similar patterns - even if it takes an expert to tell individuals apart. There's two main sub-species of elephants and rhinos but they follow the same identical pattern on each side of the divide. Then, amongst all these and more examples, we have humans.

Doctor Who 2005: The art of special effects
01/04/2005. Doctor Who used to be known for wobbly spaceships on wires and rubber masked aliens ... but fans of the all new Who will be pleased to hear the SFX department has moved up a gear since the 'good old days'.

Doctor Who 2005: The art of production design and miniature effects
01/04/2005. Edward Thomas has been a production designer on 32 films for cinema and TV but says he still felt a rush of excitement when he got a phone call to come and chat to Russell T Davies about working on the new Doctor Who.

Doctor Who 2005: The art of prosthetics and special make-up
01/04/2005. Doctor Who fan Neill Gorton was thrilled to re-design one of the Doctor's old enemies, living shop dummies the Autons, for episode one. But even the experienced 'monster maker', who has worked on blockbuster movies including Gladiator and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, was surprised by the scale of the undertaking.

A supervolcano erupts in the USA
01/03/2005. Supervolcano, a factual drama which transmits in March on BBC One, charts the possible consequences of one of nature's most cataclysmic events - a supervolcanic eruption in Yellowstone.

How much does a science fiction or fantasy writer make?
01/03/2005. Several weeks ago I announced that I would be collecting data on genre advances to grab a snapshot of the field. I'd hoped we could get some better data for conversations. I posted a form online with a series of questions that I hoped would allow us to gather some basic data with which we could learn something together.

Fiona McIntosh interview
01/03/2005. This March, we meet Fiona McIntosh, the fantasy author of The Quickening trilogy, which kicks off with Myrren's Gift, just published last month.

The Rivers of War
01/03/2005. The Rivers of War is an alternate history novel of the American frontier, the first of two books in a duology. Set against the backdrop of the War of 1812, its cast includes Sam Houston and Andrew Jackson, but in many ways the central conflict (as explained in the Afterword for the book) focuses on the destiny of the Cherokee Indians.

Todd McCaffrey interview
01/03/2005. Todd McCaffrey on why Pern wasn't part of his childhood because his mother didn't write her first story until well into his late childhood, why Dragonsblood started as a dream that woke him up in the middle of the night, and working on sequels to Dragon's Kin.

Those Eyes That Follow You Around
01/03/2005. I was reading an article recently and somebody talked about seeing a photograph of somebody who had died many years before. The author used a phrase that I often find applied to paintings and to photographs that always gets my goat a little. What the author said was that the woman in the photograph had an ethereal quality with a strange smile and eyes that looked at the viewer and mysteriously seemed to follow the viewer around the room. It is that last part that I want to comment on.

Putting the science into Science Fiction
26/02/2005. A couple editorials ago, I was discussing the use of allegory in Science Fiction. This time, we're going to look at the application of science in SF. In various forms, over the years, there has been varied discussions about the use of science in SF. Writers who are self-admittedly not scientists or with no inclination that way, have tended to veer towards the soft sciences or focused on characters or plot more than what makes the backdrop work.

Miss Oberon Regrets: Part 1 of 2
01/02/2005. a Psi-Kicks story by: GF Willmetts. The tiger-Fey Kataya Oberon is back! She's in Colombia & has to stay out of trouble long enough to take on a Yakuza enforcement arm & curtail a drug distribution ring. Hang on to your hats cos that's about the only disguise you've got.

Will Eisner (1917-2005)
01/02/2005. On the 3rd January 2005, the world lost another comicbook creator in the form of the legendary Will Eisner. At the age of 87, he died following complications from quadruple bypass heart surgery.

The Loss of a Great Artist: Frank Kelly Freas (1922-2005)
01/02/2005. Frank Kelly Freas passed away in his sleep at his home in California in the early hours of Sunday, 2nd January, at the age of 84.

Miss Oberon Regrets: Part 2 of 2
01/02/2005. a Psi-Kicks story by: GF Willmetts. The tiger-Fey Kataya Oberon is back! She's in Colombia & has to stay out of trouble long enough to take on a Yakuza enforcement arm & curtail a drug distribution ring. Hang on to your hats cos that's about the only disguise you've got.

Nature is Earthís biggest terrorist after man - and only just! But weíre ready to show our worse.
01/02/2005. Disaster movies are part of Science Fiction fodder. We can show alternative endings for the fate of the other inhabitants of this planet Earth, confident that we can sleep happily at night that such disasters will never happen in our reality. Such films might even have a happy ending. After all, we welcome the starsí survival even if the rest of the world didnít make it. The events in Southern Asia on 26th December 2004 will testify that it doesnít and is a strong reminder just how precious the planet we live on is and a wake-up call not just to help the survivors there but to work towards looking after our planet.

Catching Up
01/02/2005. Science fiction author Ken Macleod had recently finished his latest SF novel, provisionally titled Learning the World. Having recklessly agreed to write short stories for no less than four anthologies, three of them deadlined for next year, he now feels as if he is climbing the lower slopes of Mount Stross.

Frank Kelly Freas (1922-2005): comments by Mark R. Leeper
01/02/2005. Those of us who got interested in science fiction in the 1950s and 1960s (or earlier) are finding us passing some unpleasant milestones. It seems that many of the people who created the science fiction we liked in those decades are getting old and dying.

A fire-side chat with Ken
01/02/2005. What a wonderful way to start the year! A cosy fire-side chat with Ken Macleod - SF maestro and all-round nice guy - whose new paperback, Newton's Wake, is currently Ottakar's SF Book Of The Month.

Eric Trautmann Interview
01/01/2005. Eric Nylund, author of the best-selling Halo novels, Halo: The Fall of Reach and Halo: First Strike, (recently re-released, along with William C. Dietzís Halo: The Flood, in a Del Rey boxed set) took some time to interview Eric S. Trautmann, author of The Art of Halo.

To the Stars
01/01/2005. Science fiction author Gregory Benford remembers the novel To The Stars By L. Ron Hubbard. He read this remarkable novel when he was but a kid, somewhere in the early 1950s. As its last line proclaims, it is a tale of high drama about being "outward bound on a mission to the ageless stars."

The David Hardy Interview
01/01/2005. What can I say about David Hardy? Iíve reviewed two of his books of space art on the website, had extensive chats with him discussing everything from art technique to astronomy and barely scratched the surface regarding his other interest ranging from his love of motor-bikes to guitar jamming to his occasional chairmanship over the years of Birminghamís SF group.

The Best Magician In The World
01/01/2005. Short fiction from the pen of Uncle Geoff. Hmmm. Magic.

Like a Death; or, Altogether Elsewhere, Vast
01/01/2005. The Conservative and the Communist sometimes find they have more in common than either might have expected; at least that they understand each other, and agree on what is important; likewise the Freethinker and the Fundamentalist. In politics as in religion, both poles are perplexed by the Liberal; from opposite sides of the case they scratch their heads, like Victorian biologists looking at a platypus and wondering if they aren't being made a monkey of.

High energy on the cheap: and a little shrimp shall lead them
01/01/2005. There is a growing excitement in parts of the physics community these days, says by Mark R. Leeper. And you may have read about it here first. Back on September of 2002, Mark published the following article on Snapping Shrimp in his zine the MT Void.

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