The OF Blog: A few genre-related odds and ends

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A few genre-related odds and ends

After reading Matt Staggs' excellent daily links post, I saw a few articles there I wanted to comment upon briefly:

Michael Cisco blogs about a rather unsatisfactory relationship he has had with Prime Books. From what I understand, he is not the first to have problems with their books being published on time or with receiving royalties every six months. Perhaps it is a standard occupational hazard when it comes to having a book published with a smaller publisher or perhaps it is an issue limited to Prime alone, or even a colossal misunderstanding. I don't know, but Cisco's post certainly is worth reading, even if it might turn out that he was mistaken on all this.

Edit: Prime's editor/publisher, Sean Wallace, responds to Cisco's charges. From this and a couple other things I've since learned, it might be a big misunderstanding on Cisco's part and I feel obliged to provide more to this.

Charles Tan has a very interesting post up about his experiences with PDFs, with how it affected positively his ability to read/review books, as well as his occasional reliance upon pirated e-books. He also refers to my post on the latter subject and I believe those reading my posts on the issue ought to read his excellent article.

There's a Guardian post of Top 10 Slipstream Novels, as chosen by Christopher Priest. Read many of these and while I agree with the excellence of those novels, I can't help but to wonder if the term "slipstream" is the literary equivalent to "rockabilly."

SF Signal has a Mind Meld forum of authors on "worldbuilding." While informative and full of interesting points by the various authors, I would have loved it more if there had been more discussion as to whether or not such a term as "worldbuilding" ought to have the cache that it currently holds in some corners.

And finally, there's an article in Spanish from one of Spain's leading newspapers bemoaning the state of SF. Yes, there is a Spanish version of Dave Itzkoff. Needless to say, it is but one editor's opinion, as many others I've read over the past year seem to indicate that Spanish SF is healthier than before. After all, the recent Semana Negra seems to have been a great success, something I couldn't imagine happening here in the US, although it certainly would be cool to have an outdoor festival to take the place of some of the summer conventions.

Hopefully, these links will be of interest to others. Thoughts on these, please?


Liviu said...

As mentioned I do not mind reading e-books and I even bought and read quite a few that are only e-published, some temporarily like Baen e-arcs that are released 5-6 months before the print version, some permanently so far.

I've just reviewed for Robert a pdf short novel that will be published as such soon by a small press, and sometime later as print and for me it really makes no difference how I read the book.

Sometime I read a book 4 way, print, on my PC, on my Sony and on my 770, all depending on where I am, what I am doing... and I have no problem reading 10 pages print and the next 10 on the pc, the next 10 on the 770 and the next 10 on the Sony so to speak.

Larry said...

Yeah, I can see the advantage of having multiple formats in such situations, even if part of me is going to prefer the portability of a book at this stage.

Adam Whitehead said...

Oh God, not the 'slipstream' definition argument again :-P I first heard this on about twelve years ago when David Langford wrote an entire article about it in SFX based, I think, on Priest using it back then as well. It has slipped into general usage, but you definitely don't see it around as much as you used to.

Larry said...

Well, it's like a zombie in a mall's just there, you know? I'll settle for gleefully throwing all those terms under the umbrella of "material culture" and see who dares fight against that :P

Anonymous said...

Regarding Prime Books, Michael Cisco is not alone in his complaints. See here for more.

Larry said...

Interesting. Thanks for the link.

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