The Sound of Useless Wings January 28, 2015 The Sound of Useless Wings Cecil Castellucci Of insect dreams and breaking hearts. Damage January 21, 2015 Damage David D. Levine Concerning a spaceship's conscience. And the Burned Moths Remain January 14, 2015 And the Burned Moths Remain Benjanun Sriduangkaew Treason is a trunk of thorns. A Beautiful Accident January 7, 2015 A Beautiful Accident Peter Orullian A Sheason story.
From The Blog
January 28, 2015
Heists and Capers Redux!
Stubby the Rocket
January 26, 2015
Why Obi-Wan Lied to Luke Skywalker
Emily Asher-Perrin
January 23, 2015
11 Winter’s Tales For Your Chilly Reading Needs!
Stubby the Rocket
January 23, 2015
Winter 2015 Anime Preview: Season of Sequels
Kelly Quinn
January 21, 2015
Don’t Touch That Dial: Midseason SFF
Alex Brown
Jan 28 2015 1:15pm

Afternoon Roundup: It’s Dangerous to Go Alone! Take This Caffeine Boost

Sleevebucks pop culture geeky Starbucks sleeves Link Legend of Zelda Instagram

Welcome to the first-ever Afternoon Roundup! Right around the time you’re flagging and getting your afternoon caffeine fix, we’re here with more great links from around the Web. And once you have your hot drink in hand, maybe you’ll be inspired by the Instagram account Sleevebucks to turn the Starbucks mermaid into every pop culture character imaginable! Although they’ve already done a bang-up job of transforming her into Zorro, Thor, and even Sherlock Holmes himself.

Afternoon Roundup ponders Chris Pratt ruling two big action-adventure franchises; connects the dots on Legend of Korra; and tries to get you to watch Black Mirror already—you’ll really like it!

[Read more]

Jan 9 2015 5:00pm

These Groovy Retro Marvel Variant Covers Pull from All Corners of Pop Culture

Phil Noto Marvel variant covers February 2015

Painter and comic book artist Phil Noto has already received plenty of praise for his current run on Marvel’s Black Widow series with Nathan Edmondson. But for the month of February, Noto’s work will be all over the Marvel universe, through 20 variant covers he drew for popular ongoing series including Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain America, Deadpool, and more. In addition to being gorgeous, the covers draw from pop culture references as varied as Spike Lee and young adult book covers.

[See more covers]

Dec 9 2014 4:44pm

Is That the Eye of Sauron Floating Over Moscow?

Eye of Sauron Russia Moscow The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies movie premiere

A great Eye, lidless, wreathed in flame will appear over Moscow, Russia this week, as a pretty cool marketing ploy. According to The Hollywood Reporter Russia, art group Svechenie (translated as “Glow”) dreamed up a lighting installation that would project the Eye of Sauron above one of Moscow’s skyscrapers for the December 11 release of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.

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Oct 30 2014 8:00am

Check Out Dragonstone and Other Art Pieces From The World of Ice & Fire

The World of Ice & Fire book art Dragonstone Philip Straub George R.R. Martin

One of the best things about George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series is the utter detail he puts into the world of Westeros (and beyond), down to its castles, thrones, and warring families. Pick up The World of Ice & Fire, the new history compendium, and you’ll get to see these details that have lived in your imagination made real.

In addition to the 19 factoids, family trees, and prophecies we found hiding within its 300+ pages, there’s a breathtaking array of art depicting every corner of Westeros and beyond. Readers will get to see the Iron Throne (the much scarier version than what’s on the HBO series) up close, as well as detailed views of castles like Dragonstone and portraits of historical figures including Rhaegar Targaryen and Princess Nymeria. Check out a preview of the art below!

[Feast your eyes on the art of The World of Ice & Fire]

Sep 11 2014 11:12am

RoboCop Just Got His Doctorate in Art History

Peter Weller RoboCop doctorate art history

Or, you know, Buckaroo Banzai, or Admiral Alexander Marcus, if you prefer. Deciding that his (frankly epic) acting career just wasn’t enough for him, Peter Weller has also pursued art history studies for over a decade. As reported by the UCLA Alumni Facebook page, he just earned his doctorate in Italian Renaissance Art History and Ancient Roman History at UCLA! We would like to imagine that he showed up to his dissertation defense dressed as Robocop, and said something like, “Give me my doctorate. You have 20 seconds to comply.” but more likely he just presented a thoroughly-researched lecture, filled with relevant visuals, to underscore his theory that Padua was responsible for much of the glory of the Italian Renaissance, and that the assumed Florentine dominance of that period is overrated.

But we still like our version better.

Go Bruins! Stay out of trouble!

Sep 5 2014 1:05pm

Margaret Atwood’s Next Book Won’t Be Readable Until 2114

Margaret Atwood Future Library art project Katie Paterson

Margaret Atwood’s seminal novel The Handmaid’s Tale includes a fascinating metafictional epilogue in which a symposium in the year 2125 discusses the dystopian period in which the book is set, as well as heroine Offred’s story. It’s incredibly fitting, then, that our descendants in 2114 will be the first to read Atwood’s latest work, thanks to the innovative Future Library art project.

[Read more]

Jul 18 2014 8:00am

The Art of Julie Dillon

Julie Dillon

Julie Dillon. Twice nominated for a Hugo Award for Best Artist, she’s become synonymous with awards ballots. The Chesley Award, Spectrum, and the World Fantasy Award, among others, have all named her as one of the finest illustrators working in science fiction and fantasy art.

Oddly, she remains under used in the cover game, with only a handful to her credit among major publishing houses. And among cover artists, her name recognition in comparison to stalwarts like John Harris and Michael Whelan lags behind, which is a fact not long for this world. Because Julie Dillon has something few artists lay claim to, a distinctive point of view.

[Read More]

Jun 4 2014 10:00am

Rocket Talk, Episode 12: Victo Ngai and Jeffrey Alan Love

Rocket Talk

In this episode of Rocket Talk, Justin Landon talks with illustrators Victo Ngai and Jeffrey Alan Love about what it’s like to make a living bleeding art. The discussion ranges from how they got into the business, to how they survive, and why there are more men than women working the field.

[Listen here!]

Apr 18 2014 9:00am

Crafting a Shardblade for Brandon Sanderson

Shardblade Val Alston Brandon Sanderson Stormlight Archive

During Brandon Sanderson’s book tour for Words of Radiance, super-fan Val Alston traveled from Mexico to attend a signing event at The Poisoned Pen in Scottsdale, Arizona in order to meet the author and present him with this amazing homemade Shardblade!

We reached out to Val to get the full scoop on the design and creation of the Shardblade, and he was nice enough to share his story. Check out Val’s process below, including some in-progress photos!

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Apr 15 2014 9:30am

Is Art Selfish?

Oscar Wilde once said, “Art is the most intense form of individualism the world has ever known.”

And perhaps he’s right. When I’m working on my comics, I lock myself in my art studio (i.e. spare bedroom) for hours. At least once a day, my four-year-old will tiptoe down our hallway. She’ll scratch at my door quietly, like a cat. After her scratches don’t bring any response, she’ll try whispering. Then knocking. Then shouting. “Daddy?! When are you coming out, Daddy?! Daddy, can you even hear me?!”

[Thoughts on art, selfishness, cosplay, and livers...]

Mar 14 2014 3:00pm

Parental Expectations, Practical Majors, and Advice for Making Art

A few days before I headed off to college, my dad sat me down for a talk. It wasn’t that talk, which we’d had a few years before. That talk was incredibly awkward, involving metaphors about shooting guns and comparisons between human genitalia and broccoli. My dad gave me that talk in Chinese, and it was one of the few times in my life when I was grateful my Chinese language skills weren’t up to par.

The talk we had before college concerned something even more important than the birds and the bees, at least in the eyes of a first-generation immigrant like my father. He wanted to talk to me about my choice of major. He told me in his most solemn voice, “You must choose a major that is practical.”

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Feb 26 2014 10:00am

Interior Art from Words of Radiance

Brandon Sanderson Words of Radiance The Stormlight Archive Words of Radiance draws ever nearer! The continuation of Brandon Sanderson’s Stormlight Archive will be here on March 4th, but since we can hardly wait, we’re giving out more preview material. To hold you over while you wait for the release, here’s some interior art from the book.


[Read more]

Dec 17 2013 3:30pm

Altered States of America Sweepstakes!

We suppose the state capitals are important, but isn't it more crucial to know the exact location of Marty McFly’s hometown, or remind yourself of just where Beetlejuice occured? This illustrated map of America from The Chopping Block populates the states with legendary characters and events from science fiction, fantasy, and horror, depicting where some of your favorite stories and zombie attacks took place in a format you can hang on your wall.

One winner will recieve a giclée print of the Altered States of America, plus a regional map of their choice! (You can check out a larger version here and all the regional prints here.)

Comment in the post to enter!

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A purchase does not improve your chances of winning. Sweepstakes open to legal residents of 50 United States and D.C., and Canada (excluding Quebec). To enter, comment on this post beginning at 3:30 PM Eastern Time (ET) on December 17. Sweepstakes ends at 12:00 PM ET on December 21. Void outside the United States and Canada and where prohibited by law. Please see full details and official rules here. Sponsor:, 175 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10010.

Nov 14 2013 3:00pm

Story Creatures: Wonderbook by Jeff VanderMeer

Wonderbook Jeff VanderMeer First released in mid-October, Wonderbook: The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction by Jeff VanderMeer is a fascinating mélange of straightforward exploration of craft topics (plotting, characters, revision, etc.), strange and lovely art, sidebar interviews with popular writers, exercises and experiments, fantastical diagrams, and more—including a digital compendium off of the page at It’s an ambitious project, with a lot going on between the covers (and beyond).

Of course, the concept of a multimodal writing text snagged my interest straight away, particularly considering that I also appreciated VanderMeer’s earlier writer’s guide Booklife quite a lot. I was not disappointed, having taken the time to peruse and play around with Wonderbook. The sense of this book as organic, sprawling, and multiply voiced makes it one of the most “fiction-like” fiction writing guides I’ve ever seen; it also productively prods at the varying levels of the imagination involved in the process of writing instead of relying solely on naked words.

[And the multiple modalities of the text aren’t just for fun]

Sep 26 2013 1:10pm

This Geeky Crayon Sculpture Art Will Blow Your Mind

crayon art, wax nostalgic tumblr, westeros houses

Westeros houses! In crayon! Not drawn by crayon, but as tiny crayon-made sculptures. They are so pretty. There are more of them, including Star Wars visages and cartoon princesses. We are so, so very impressed. We haven't been made this envious by talent since book scuplting started becoming a thing.

They come from a Tumblr blog called “Wax Nostalgic,” which makes us giggle. Until we remember the talent again and start weeping.

[More crayon art!]

Sep 18 2013 8:30am

Is the Capitol Couture Clothing Line Sending the Wrong Message to Hunger Games Fans?

Capitol Couture

It has been reported that as part of the viral marketing campaign surrounding the Hunger Games film sequel Catching Fire, a “luxury clothing line” called Capitol Couture will be released this fall. The line will feature 16 pieces from high-end designer Trish Summerville, all of them meant to reflect the outrageous fashion trends of Panem’s rich and privileged.

A luxury clothing line. I’m sorry, what is the Capitol meant to stand for in Suzanne Collins’ trilogy again? Hang on, it’s coming back to me…

[The girl on fire!]

Sep 6 2013 12:35pm

Want to Be A DC Artist? Just Draw Harley Quinn Naked, Committing Suicide

Commentary about Batwoman’s prohibited marriage is flying far and fast, and the discussion is an incredibly important one. But it turns out that there’s more in DC’s current litany of bad choices, and the most recent is enough to make the stomach churn: an Open Talent Search to draw the next Harley Quinn comic.

Because, you know, her costume revamp wasn’t already irritating enough.

[Check out the guidelines...]

Aug 20 2013 9:00am

Movie Minutiae: 9 Common Film Errors That Are Just the Worst

Lord of the Rings, Boromir, Narsil

We’ve all got our pet peeves when it comes to what we see on film: bad clichés; certain types of plotholes; particularly ludicrous Deus Ex Machinas. Sometimes it can spell the difference between our choice to rant or rave about the latest blockbuster, but even so, many of those peeves are just never going anywhere. There’s no point in bringing them up because most people don’t even notice. And I’m not talking about the “sound in space” problems or never-ending ammo. Just weird niggling details that remind you all too easily that what you’re watching isn’t remotely real.

So these are some of the biggest offenders—to me, personally. Maybe you share my pain. Or maybe I’ll just sound like that crazy person at your house parties who won’t shut up about anachronisms and fake blood. I am sure you have to deal with those people all the time.

[From swords to breath control to roundhouses...]

May 7 2013 1:30pm

Short Fiction Spotlight: The Picture of Perfection

Short Fiction Spotlight Nebula Awards

Welcome back to the Short Fiction Spotlight, a weekly column co-curated by myself and the marvellous Brit Mandelo, and dedicated to doing exactly what it says in the header: shining a light on the some of the best and most relevant fiction of the aforementioned form.

This week, we’ll be reading through two of the seven Nebula-nominated novelettes, namely “Fade to White” by Catherynne M. Valente and “Portrait of Lisane de Patagnia” by Rachel Swirsky. I figured it’d be a bit much for me to review “The Finite Canvas” by my aforementioned collaborator, but let it be said that her story is deservedly in contention for the iconic award as well, alongside shorts by Catherine Asaro, Ken Liu, Andy Duncan and Megan McCarron.

So why these two tales above the others? Well, because a single thread connects them: both explore the idea of the image, and the terrible power of the picture of perfection.

[Read more]

May 3 2013 7:00am

Morning Roundup: Giant Rubber Duckie Invades Hong Kong. The Penguin Not Responsible.

Though the whereabouts of the criminal mastermind known only as The Penguin are unclear, he has not taken responsiblity for the giant rubber duckie which is currently sailing around the world. It showed up in Hong Kong yesterday, and is reported to be the work of an artist named Florentijin Hofman. The duckie (as yet unnamed?) is is 46-feet-tall and 55-feet-long. Also, no word yet if a giant Ernie is lurking somewhere beneath the waves. (Via Inhabitat.)

Your collection of daily offsitle links are like taking a giant bath with monsters and includes more inflatable objects, confirmed mutants, who the REAL Batman is, and more!

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