AMAZING NEWS: 12/21/14


Earlier this week Amazing Stories published a multi-lingual interview with author and translator Ken Liu.  The interview is available in Chinese, English, French, Italian and Spanish.  Portions of the German language interview will be published this Monday and will be finalized after the New Year’s holiday


Below:  Free Fiction Online: Radio Archives:  Suvudu Year in Review: Night Shade Books:  More Night Shade: SpaceX Ocean Landing: Harper Collins New Audio App:  2015 World Fantasy Award Judges


Mayor Explains Driving While Black:  Whites Aren’t Asked “When did you get out of jail?”

aliensMormon Aliens (Why can’t Scientology make stuff like this?)

Big Battles Ahead for Women’s Rights

What Women in Science Deal with Daily

Google Sues Mississippi Attorney General



A Message From Mars – first British SF film – restored

Chesley Bonestell on Venus

Convention Write Up:  E. Leeper archive (Philcon)

Warren Ellis Re-Imagines

Star Wars Themed Gifts

Amazing Stories Themed Gifts

Nerd Cruise

If you’re not bored reading SF, you might have Alfie to thank

Gary K Wolfe reviews Three Body Problem

PKD Really LIked The Man Who Fell To Earth

Skeletor Plays D&D

Playboy Ranks EVERY Episode of Star Trek (via SF Signal)  (Playboy staff could have saved a lot of time:  TOS – 1 thru 80 [including the original pilot];  Star Trek Animated Series – 81 thru 102, the rest 103 thru whatever)


XMas Cheer From Ford Street Publishing

John Sargent:  Macmillan Pricing Changes (Scalzi Comments)

There will be a meeting of the New York Science Fiction Society – the Lunarians, Inc on Sunday, January 11, 2015

The Toast Falls Butter Side Down:  Rights Grab

legionJerry Pournelle Suffers Mild Stroke (and the latest)

Reading in the Age of Amazon (via Paul DiFillipo)

Boskone MIni Interviews

Rhysling Award Winners


Who has the time to figure out TIME?

Texas Star Party

Turtles?  No, It’s ROBOTS All The Way Down.  (Via David Brin)

Mars is SUCH a Tease!

NGC 2207 and IC 2163 are two spiral galaxies in the process of merging.Galactic Light Show

Prosthetic Skin

Journey To Space:  Video from the ISS



Free Fiction Online

Free SF, Fantasy and Horror Fiction Newsletter #45


Don’t Miss These Links:

  1. Apex Magazine #67 – December 2014
  2. Journal of Unlikely Entomology #10 – November 2014
  3. Mirror Dance Winter 2014

My Latest Release – Near Future Science Fiction


First Lights (offplanet, book one)

Humanity’s first big push to outer space.

It’s been over twenty years since the SolRescue sunshield saved the world from runaway climate change. Or at least bought the world a little time.

But in this new world, where the people have started to win back power from the old elites, and where the first uncertain steps are being taken to expand offplanet, there are alliances at work to reverse all of the progress that has been made.
more info…


Written – Flash

Written – Serialized


Audio – Radio Dramas

Audio – Serialized

Free eBooks – Various Speculative Subgenres

@Smashwords: Black Treacle #8 – December 2014 [Dark Speculative Fiction Magazine – Smashwords]

Free eBooks – Science Fiction

Ashes of Honor (The Griffin Series: Book 1) by Philip Williams and Cat Williams An exiled soldier who believes he has lost everything to war rediscovers love, honor and purpose after he meets a beautiful and vengeful woman who harbors a secret past of her own. Their mission to find and rescue 37 genetically engineered creatures will take them across the galaxy and force them to face their deepest fears. [Space Opera Novel – First of Series – Amazon]

Beyond This Time by Charlotte Banchi From 2000 to 1963 is one step across a line. Officer Kat Templeton and her partner, James Mitchell dare to step across into a world neither of them is prepared for; a world where segregation is the rule. Kat is black and Mitch is white, In 2000 they have been a good team. In 1963 it would have been impossible for them to team up, but Kat has a personal reason for daring to step across the line into 1963. She sees this time-travel phenomenon as an opportunity to save her aunt, Lettie Ruth Rayson, who went missing in 1963. Although aware of the racial issues of the time, no longer in uniform, armed, nor carrying her police badge she quickly discovers the reality of her new world. Pennsylvania raised Mitch soon learns “The way it is” in the south. As he and Kat are drawn deeper into the violent 1960s he must work through his emotions regarding black-white friendships and loyalty. In their quest to alter past events they are confronted with new threats to family and friends as well as their own lives. [Time Travel Suspense Novel – Amazon]

Extensis Vitae by Gregory Mattix Michael Reznik is a soldier who wakes up in a mysterious underground bunker, with a technologically advanced body he doesn’t recognize. The people around him have cast aside fighting and warfare. They haven’t needed them—until now. Reznik is charged with tracking down a band of ruthless killers and finding a kidnapped doctor. He finds himself honor-bound to do what is right for the people who brought him back from the dead. A peaceful people are depending on him to do what is right. Can he live up to their expectations, even when he finds out that his new body has an expiration date? [Science Fiction Adventure Novel – Amazon]

Rule of Thumb (Balance of Power) by Scott Baughman[Science Fiction Adventure Novella – Amazon | Kobo |Smashwords]

@Nature via Concatenation: First Foot by Deborah Walker [Science Fiction – PDF –Nature via Concatenation]

@Nature via Concatenation: Quis Custodiet? by Brian Clegg [Science Fiction – PDF – Nature via Concatenation]

Free eBooks – Post-Apocalyptic and Dystopian

Anywhere But Here (The Starborn Ascension #1) by Jason D. Morrow What if you could see the future with a single touch? What if that touch revealed someone’s death, and that person was someone you loved? Would you do everything you could to change it? In a post-apocalyptic world, where danger roams in many forms, seventeen-year-old Waverly seeks protection in the town of Crestwood after her boyfriend is ruthlessly killed by lawless raiders. But what she finds is a place wrought with mystery, shady dealings, and more instability than she anticipates. [Post-Apocalyptic Novel – First of Series – Amazon | B&N | Smashwords]

Rise of Chaos: Season 1 by Griffin Smith The United States as we know it has just collapsed. It all started after the release of “Annihilation”, a synthetic designer drug that was marketed as a perfectly legal high. This drug turned its unsuspecting users into “feeders.” (It causes imminent death and then re-animation into a zombie like state.) [Post-Apocalyptic / Zombie Serial – First Season – Amazon]

Tethered Twins by Mike Essex A world filled with twins, tethered together in life and in death. [Dystopian Novel – Amazon | Kobo]

Free eBooks – Steampunk

Balanced on the Blade’s Edge (Dragon Blood #1) by Lindsay Buroker As the best fighter pilot in the Iskandian army, Colonel Ridge Zirkander is used to a little leniency from his superiors. Until he punches the wrong diplomat in the nose and finds himself issued new orders: take command of a remote prison mine in the inhospitable Ice Blades Mountains. Ridge has never been in charge of anything larger than a flier squadron—what’s he supposed to do with a frozen fortress full of murderers and rapists? Not to mention the strange woman who shows up right before he arrives… [Steampunk Romance Novel – First of Series – Amazon]

Free eBooks – Alternative History

Reich by Drew Avera What if is a dangerous question, especially when curiosity provokes an idea regarding one of the greatest military strategists of the 20th century and possibly the greatest evil as well. What if Hitler had won the war, or what if society was taught to revere him as a hero? What if everyone believed the lie?[Alternative History / Science Fiction Novel – Amazon]

Free eBooks – Fantasy

Knights of the Dragon (Knights and Wizards #1) by A. J. Gallant A boy climbs an unclimbable cliff where he meets a dragon named Ryxa; she immediately likes him even though Dragons and humans do not associate but his courage is impressive, his personality captivating. Ryxa befriends 12-year-old Marcus only to discover that his kingdom will soon be conquered by another and the boy is doomed, and so to save him and his people she hires knights to go on an adventure with her and the boy to find some powerful magic to defend his kingdom. [Epic Fantasy Novel – First of Series – Amazon]

The Chosen (Portals of Destiny #1) by Shay West Astra. Kromin. Volgon. Earth. To each of the four planets are sent four Guardians, with one mission: to protect and serve the Chosen, those unwitting champions of prophecy who alone can save the galaxy from the terrifying Mekans.But the signs of prophecy have not yet appeared, and the decision to send the Guardians early could doom all in the galaxy to death. [Epic Fantasy Novel – First of Series – Amazon]

The Scarlet Crane (Transition Magic #1) by J. E. HopkinsTransition. The one-month period during early puberty when all children have the power to perform magic. But with a monstrous catch. The magic must be unique and flow from the true desire of the child, and no one else, or the child dies. Few take the risk. Almost all who do, perish. [Dark Fantasy Novel – First of Series –Amazon]

The Written (Emaneska #1) by Ben Galley His name is Farden. They whisper that he’s dangerous. Dangerous is only the half of it. Something has gone missing from the libraries of Arfell. Something very old, and something very powerful. Five scholars are now dead, a country is once again on the brink of war, and the magick council is running out of time and options. Entangled in a web of lies and politics and dragged halfway across icy Emaneska and back, Farden must unearth a secret even he doesn’t want to know, a secret that will shake the foundations of his world. Dragons, drugs, magick, death, and the deepest of betrayals await. Welcome to Emaneska. [Dark Fantasy Novel – First of Series – Amazon]

@GigaNotoSaurus: Dragon Winter by Judith Tarr [Fantasy – EPUB and MOBI –GigaNotoSaurus]

Free eBooks – Fantasy – Young Adult

Nomadin by Shawn P. Cormier Young Ilien knows nothing of the dark tales told around late-night fires, or of the legendary Nomadin Wizards and the prophesy that haunts them. But all that is soon to change. For a shadow touches the peaceful land of Nadae. An ancient evil is stirring. Already a NiDemon has crossed from the land of the dead. And now Ilien must run – from a monster of unimaginable cunning and power, toward a fate more frightening than that which hunts him. But he cannot run forever. Eventually he will have to make a stand. Sooner or later he will have to face what even the legendary Nomadin cannot… himself. [YA Sword & Sorcery Novel – Amazon]

Seams in Reality by Alex Siegel As a freshman in a suburban college near Chicago, Andrew leads a mundane life until he meets a professor named Tonya. She is secretly a master sorcerer, and she invites him into a conspiracy of magic. Only those few who possess exceptional talent may join. A resourceful young woman named Charley has the same supernatural gift. She accompanies Andrew on his journey into a dark profession, and romance quickly blooms between the young apprentices. When Andrew meets Blake, a sorcerer who knew his grandfather, Andrew becomes mbroiled in a game of lies and treachery. Blake’s thirst for power leaves a trail of casualties, and in the end, only Andrew can stop him. [YA Sword & Sorcery Novel – First of Series – Amazon]

The Sorcery Code (The Sorcery Code #1) by Dima Zales Once a respected member of the Sorcerer Council and now an outcast, Blaise has spent the last year of his life working on a special magical object. The goal is to allow anyone to do magic, not just the sorcerer elite. The outcome of his quest is unlike anything he could’ve ever imagined – because, instead of an object, he creates Her. She is Gala, and she is anything but inanimate. Born in the Spell Realm, she is beautiful and highly intelligent – and nobody knows what she’s capable of. She will do anything to experience the world . . . even leave the man she is beginning to fall for. [YA Sword & Sorcery Novel – First of Series –Amazon | B&N | Kobo | Smashwords]

Free eBooks – Vampires

Sinjin (Bryn and Sinjin #1) by H.P. Mallory Abandoned on the battlefield by the people she calls her tribe, Bryn must face the fact that she is now playing prisoner to the Queen of the Underworld, who also happens to be her fraternal twin sister. As the days and months go by with no word from the Supreme Elder of her tribe, Bryn thinks her life couldn’t get much worse… [Vampire Romance Novella – First of Series – Amazon]

Sunrise at Sunset: Revamped (Sunset Vampire #1) by Jaz PrimoWhen is a bloodthirsty predator the best protection against a psychotic killer? When the predator is both a vampire… and the woman you love. [YA Vampire Romance Novel – First of Series –Amazon]

Free eBooks – Superhero

Armageddon Girl (New Olympus Saga #1) by C.J. CarellaSuperheroes and Alternate History collide! Gamer chick Christine Dark is transported to a world where people with superpowers have existed since the 1920s and have created a brave new world of larger-than-life heroes and villains. After joining forces with a faceless vigilante and other unusual heroes, Christine discovers she has the power to save that world – or destroy it. [Superhero / Alternative History Novel – First of Series – Amazon]

Free eBooks – Zombies

Zombie Fallout by Mark Tufo It started in a lab at the CDC (Center for Disease Control), virologists were so relieved to finally have an effective vaccination against the virulent swine flu. Pressure to come up with something had come from the highest office in the land. In an attempt at speed the virologists had made two mistakes, first they used a live virus and second they didn’t properly test for side effects. Within days hundreds of thousands of vaccinations shipped across the US and the world. People lined up for the shots, like they were waiting in line for concert tickets. Fights broke out in drugstores as fearful throngs tried their best to get one of the limited shots. Within days the CDC knew something was wrong. Between 4 and 7 hours of receiving the shot roughly 95% succumbed to the active H1N1 virus in the vaccination. More unfortunate than the death of the infected was the added side effect of reanimation, it would be a decade before scientists were able to ascertain how that happened.The panic that followed couldn’t be measured. Loved ones did what loved ones always do, they tried to comfort, their kids or their spouses or their siblings, but what came back was not human not even remotely. Those people that survived their first encounter with these monstrosities usually did not come through unscathed, if bitten they had fewer than 6 hours of humanity left, the clock was ticking. During the first few hysteria ridden days of The Coming as it has become known, many thought the virus was airborne, luckily that was not the case or nobody would have survived. It was a dark time in human history. One from which we may never be able to pull ourselves out of the ashes from.[Zombie Novel – Amazon]

for the audio CD sale on Old Time Radio & Audiobook sets at half price.
Radio Archives is celebrating 15 years of creating great products and we are celebrating with our biggest sale ever!

Thursday, December 18th is the last day for half price Old Time Radio and Audiobook audio CDs in the Bargain Basement.
SUVUDU Year in Review


From the Desk of Tom Hoeler

Dear Readers,
“We can do this! Right?”

By the last day of a convention, this is usually the sentiment of the staff working the booth. The minds are willing, the excitement remains just as fresh as day one, but by Sunday our bodies usually have other ideas. Where did all these extra boxes come from?  Can we just take a 30 hour nap, please? Donuts alone are not sufficient to sustain human life!

Conventions have become a big part of our promotion calendar. They represent the best opportunity for our authors, and us as a publisher, to interact directly with you dear reader. Despite living in such a connected world, nothing beats standing around a table, books in hand, talking to people passionate about great stories. It’s where we all started, right?

This year, we attended four shows: C2E2 in Chicago, Phoenix Comic Con, San Diego Comic Con, and New York Comic Con; and plans are already in motion for 2015. Something we are frequently asked is “how exactly does going to a convention work?” So here’s a bit of an explanation, with a look back at our 2014 convention experience:

For the rest of Tom’s letter, click here!

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Each week we’re giving away the first 50 pages of an awesome Del Rey or Spectra book — for FREE! Check out the titles we premiered last month:
by Karen Marie Moning
Click here to read »
Half A King
by Harry Turtledove
Click here to read »
The Horror Stories...
by Karen Robards
Click here to read »
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The Dire Earth

Author Pierce Brown talks about his new novel Golden Son, the highly anticipated Book II of the Red Rising Trilogy. In the interview, he talks about his writing process, the expectations and challenges of writing a second book, Darrow’s beverage of choice, and much more!

To read the interview with Pierce Brown, click here!

To pre-order your copy of Golden Son, out January 6, 2015, click here!

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Each month throughout the year, we invite one of our authors to write a letter to Suvudu readers and give them the chance to tell a special story or provide a behind the scenes look at their writing process. Below is a round-up of some “Dear Reader” letters from your favorite authors through-out 2014:

Joe Abercrombie – Half a King

Pierce Brown – Red Rising

Alis Franklin – Liesmith

Peter F. Hamilton – The Abyss Beyond Dreams

Robin Hobb – Fool’s Assassin

John Jackson Miller – Star Wars: A New Dawn

Wide Top

Are you a writer looking for more exposure for your blog or website? Or trying to find a platform to amplify your voice on all things SFF? Join the Suvudu Universe. You can hook up your existing site’s RSS feed, create a new blog just for us, or contribute straight through our dashboard.

Check out Suvudu Universe
Sign up to contribute to the Universe

Dean Koontz


Night Shade Books


17th of December 2014


What happens when resources become scarce and society starts to crumble? As the competition for resources pulls America’s previously stable society apart, the “New Normal” is a Soft Apocalypse. This is how our world ends; with a whimper instead of a bang.

“It’s so hard to believe,” Colin said as we crossed the steaming, empty parking lot toward the… read more   






19th of December 2014


In print and on-line, science fiction and fantasy is thriving as never before. A multitude of astonishingly creative and gifted writers are boldly exploring the mythic past, the paranormal present, and the promises and perils of myriad alternate worlds and futures. There are almost too many new and intriguing stories published every year for any reader to be able to experience them all. So how to make sure you haven’t missed any future classics?

Award-winning editor and anthologist Jonathan Strahan has surveyed the expanding universes of modern sf and fantasy to find the brightest stars in today’s … read more






X Marks the Spot: Falcon 9 Attempts Ocean Platform Landing

During our next flight, SpaceX will attempt the precision landing of a Falcon 9 first stage for the first time, on a custom-built ocean platform known as the autonomous spaceport drone ship. While SpaceX has already demonstrated two successful soft water landings, executing a precision landing on an unanchored ocean platform is significantly more challenging.

The odds of success are not great—perhaps 50% at best. However this test represents the first in a series of similar tests that will ultimately deliver a fully reusable Falcon 9 first stage.

Video of previous first stage reentry test with soft water landing

Returning anything from space is a challenge, but returning a Falcon 9 first stage for a precision landing presents a number of additional hurdles. At 14 stories tall and traveling upwards of 1300 m/s (nearly 1 mi/s), stabilizing the Falcon 9 first stage for reentry is like trying to balance a rubber broomstick on your hand in the middle of a wind storm.

To help stabilize the stage and to reduce its speed, SpaceX relights the engines for a series of three burns. The first burn—the boostback burn—adjusts the impact point of the vehicle and is followed by the supersonic retro propulsion burn that, along with the drag of the atmosphere, slows the vehicle’s speed from 1300 m/s to about 250 m/s. The final burn is the landing burn, during which the legs deploy and the vehicle’s speed is further reduced to around 2 m/s.

Landing legs deployed just before soft water landing in the Atlantic Ocean

To complicate matters further, the landing site is limited in size and not entirely stationary. The autonomous spaceport drone ship is 300 by 100 feet, with wings that extend its width to 170 feet. While that may sound huge at first, to a Falcon 9 first stage coming from space, it seems very small. The legspan of the Falcon 9 first stage is about 70 feet and while the ship is equipped with powerful thrusters to help it stay in place, it is not actually anchored, so finding the bullseye becomes particularly tricky. During previous attempts, we could only expect a landing accuracy of within 10km. For this attempt, we’re targeting a landing accuracy of within 10 meters.

A key upgrade to enable precision targeting of the Falcon 9 all the way to touchdown is the addition of four hypersonic grid fins placed in an X-wing configuration around the vehicle, stowed on ascent and deployed on reentry to control the stage’s lift vector. Each fin moves independently for roll, pitch and yaw, and combined with the engine gimbaling, will allow for precision landing – first on the autonomous spaceport drone ship, and eventually on land.

Similar steerable fins can also be seen in this test video:

The attempt to recover the first stage will begin after stage separation, once the Dragon spacecraft is safely on its way to orbit. The concept of landing a rocket on an ocean platform has been around for decades but it has never been attempted. Though the probability of success on this test is low, we expect to gather critical data to support future landing testing.

A fully and rapidly reusable rocket—which has never been done before—is the pivotal breakthrough needed to substantially reduce the cost of space access. While most rockets are designed to burn up on reentry, SpaceX is building rockets that not only withstand reentry, but also land safely on Earth to be refueled and fly again. Over the next year, SpaceX has at least a dozen launches planned with a number of additional testing opportunities. Given what we know today, we believe it is quite likely that with one of those flights we will not only be able to land a Falcon 9 first stage, but also re-fly.


HarperCollins Booklovers
Introducing StoryPlayer Try out our new StoryPlayer app for iOS

As you’ve shown an interest in audiobooks and podcasts, we hope you’ll be as excited as we are about the beta launch of StoryPlayer!

StoryPlayer brings together all the best audiobooks, author interviews and podcasts from across the web for you into one place, meaning you’ll never miss a great story again.

You’re part of a select group we’ve chosen to try it out. We’d love to hear what you think – let us know by using the feedback option in the app, or by clicking this link


Peter Dennis Pautz, President

World Fantasy Awards Association

P.O. Box 43; Mukilteo, WA 98275-0043; USA

2015 World Fantasy Awards Judges

*Gemma Files 313 Richmond St. East #768; Toronto Ontario M5A 4S7; Canada

**Nina K. Hoffman PO Box 10858; Eugene, OR 97440; USA

***Bénédicte Lombardo 50, rue du Clos; 77670 Saint Mammes; FRANCE

*Bruce McAllister 528 E. Palmyra Avenue; Orange, CA 92866; USA

***Robert Shearman 65 Telford Avenue, Streatham Hill; London SW2 4XL; United Kingdom

(All judges prefer hard copies, but those marked * can accept pdfs; ** can accept mobi; *** both)

December 18, 2014

Dear Colleague:

The judges for the 2015 World Fantasy Awards, for work published in 2014, have now been empanelled. The judges read and consider eligible materials between the date of this letter and June 1, 2015, so it is desirable for them to receive materials between now and June 1, the earlier the better. If, for instance, something is received on May 31 the judges may well have only one day to read it before their deliberations conclude. Anything received after June 1 will receive little or no consideration.

The trophies will be presented to the winners at the convention, to be held Thursday, November 5 through Sunday, November 8, 2015 at the Saratoga City Center and Saratoga Hilton, Saratoga Springs, NY USA.

An attending membership costs $175, which does not include the Awards Banquet, tickets for which must be purchased separately. Banquet tickets will be available in July. Information and forms can be found on the convention web site at

If you have any materials that you wish to be considered by the panel, please send them directly to the addresses above, and very importantly, please mark all packages as PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS – NOT FOR SALE OR RESALE – NO COMMERCIAL VALUE — WORLD FANTASY AWARDS MATERIALS. Also, please make sure to send a file copy of all materials to my office at the address above so a comprehensive submission list may be kept. This is the only way the judges can consider all eligible items, and you can be sure that your work has been given fair attention.

Qualifications: All books must have been published in 2014; magazines must have a 2014 cover date; only living authors and editors are eligible.

Fantasy Types: All forms of fantasy are eligible, e.g. epic, dark, contemporary, literary.

Categories: Life Achievement; Best Novel; Best Novella (10,001 to 40,000 words); Best Short Story; Best Anthology; Best Collection; Best Artist; Special Award  Professional; Special Award  Non Professional.

Please note that the nominees in the Life Achievement category will not be released, though the winners will be announced well before the awards banquet.

All questions pertaining to the convention should be directed to the Convention Chair.

Questions concerning eligibility, the judges, and the awards administration may be sent to my attention.

Once again, the World Fantasy Awards Administration and the convention are most pleased to be working with you. With your continued good will and support, we shall successfully uphold the already prestigious reputation of the World Fantasy Awards.

As always, thank you very much for your time, and for your assistance.


Pete Pautz

Peter Dennis Pautz


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