A Cup of Salt Tears August 27, 2014 A Cup of Salt Tears Isabel Yap They say women in grief are beautiful. Strongest Conjuration August 26, 2014 Strongest Conjuration Skyler White A story of the Incrementalists. Seven Commentaries on an Imperfect Land August 20, 2014 Seven Commentaries on an Imperfect Land Ruthanna Emrys Stories of Tikanu. Hero of the Five Points August 19, 2014 Hero of the Five Points Alan Gratz A League of Seven story.
From The Blog
August 25, 2014
Animorphs: Why the Series Rocked and Why You Should Still Care
Sam Riedel
August 20, 2014
The Welcome Return of the Impatient and Cantankerous Doctor Who
David Cranmer
August 19, 2014
The Wheel of Time Reread Redux: Introductory Post
Leigh Butler
August 19, 2014
Whatever Happened to the Boy Wonder? Bring Robin Back to the Big Screen
Emily Asher-Perrin
August 15, 2014
“Perhaps It Was Only an Echo”: The Giver
Natalie Zutter
Fri
Jul 18 2014 9:00am

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]

Wed
Jun 4 2014 11:00am

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!]

Fri
Apr 18 2014 10:00am

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!

[Read More]

Tue
Apr 15 2014 10:30am

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...]

Fri
Mar 14 2014 4:00pm

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.”

[Read More]

Wed
Feb 26 2014 11:00am

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.

Enjoy!

[Read more]

Tue
Dec 17 2013 4:30pm

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: Tor.com, 175 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10010.

Thu
Nov 14 2013 4:00pm

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 WonderbookNow.com. 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]

Thu
Sep 26 2013 2:10pm

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!]

Wed
Sep 18 2013 9:30am

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!]

Fri
Sep 6 2013 1:35pm

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...]

Tue
Aug 20 2013 10:00am

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...]

Tue
May 7 2013 2:30pm

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]

Fri
May 3 2013 8:00am

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!

[Read more]

Fri
Mar 15 2013 11:00am

Tor Tour: It’s Not Just About the Editing

Tor UK Editing Team TorWe’ve recently started a series of blog posts over at Torbooks.co.uk aimed at shining a light on various aspects and roles of those of us involved in Team Tor at Pan Macmillan. To give you, the reader, a greater insight into how the book you so lovingly place on your bookshelf, got there. To help kick things off I’ve written a brief piece about what it is I do as the Editorial Director of Tor UK. Apart from, obviously, drink coffee and read books all day!

My job is two-fold, one to find, buy, publish and represent authors of quality speculative fiction—the other is to build and develop the imprint brand of Tor in the UK.

[Read more]

Wed
Feb 13 2013 1:10pm

Harry Potter Getting New Cover Art for its 15th Anniversary

New Kazu Kibuishi cover for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's StoneThough it will still feature the iconic Mary GrandPré lightning-bolt logo, new U.S. paperback editions (from Scholastic) of the Harry Potter series will feature different covers starting in September. The new art is from Kazu Kibuishi who designed the covers for the graphic novel series Amulet. Kibuishi was initially hesitant about the project as he is a big admirer GrandPre’s work. Ultimately, though Kibuishi tried to evoke classic covers of literary novels as well as pay tribute to the Harry Potter series, saying: “I tried to think of classic perennial paperback editions of famous novels and how those illustrations tend to feel.”

The new cover for Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone is the only new cover that has been released so far. What do you think?

[Via The Mary Sue & NPR]

Tue
Feb 5 2013 12:20pm

Make Your Own Awesome Pulp Magazine Cover With the Pulp-O-Mizer!

Every wanted to have a CHILLING ADVENTURE? Are you trapped inside of an AMAZING STORY? Do you enjoy putting the words “FROM OUTER SPACE” after even the most mundane phrase? If the answer to any of these questions was “yes” then the Pulp-O-Mizer is for you! This website lets you create your own custom pulp magazine covers, complete with awesome spaceships, space-people, planets and more! We did one quickly for Stubby the Rocket and will likely do several more before the day is out.

Check out Pulp-O-Mizer here.

Thu
Dec 27 2012 5:00pm

What a Truly Faithful Comic Book Film Adaptation Might Look Like

What if the various Marvel films like Spider-Man, Iron-Man, or The Avengers featured the comic book characters the way they actually look in the comics? Artist Butcher Billy tackled that question with awesome results. There are a lot more images here, but below are a few of our favorites.

[More images]

Mon
Dec 10 2012 6:00pm

Beautifully Geeky Book Sculptures

We saw these beautiful book sculptures over on The Mary Sue, but they were created by artist Wetcanvas and can be seen on DeviantArt. There are loads more over there, but we included a few of the genre ones here. Above is Harry, Ron, and Hermione sculpted from the pages of Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows. Check below the cut for The Millenium Falcon crafted from the pages of Heir to the Empire and James Bond from the pages of Casino Royale.

[Book sculptures below]

Fri
Oct 5 2012 5:30pm

The Manual of Aeronautics: The Art of the Leviathan Trilogy

A review of The Manual of AeronauticsI was at a reading for Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan when he mentioned off-hand that it would be a trilogy… with an illustrated guide to the world he was building, in the style of the Arthur Spiderwick’s Field Guide to the Fantastical World.

Now, there are a lot of reasons that I liked the Spiderwick guide—I’m a big fan of Tony DiTerlizzi, for instance—but the deep reason is that I’m gonzo for apocrypha. Those sorts of bits and extras that deepen worldbuilding, whether they are art books like Avatar: The Last Airbender: The Art of the Animated Series or in-world mythology like The Tales of Beedle the Bard. The icing on the cake with The Manual of Aeronautics is that Keith Thompson does the art for it, as he did for the series.

[A review]