Fritz Leiber

AMAZING THINGS: William Shatner Talks Cops & Robots Fiction at ORIM

Open Road Integrated Media has put together a collection of space detective tales (where’s Gil ‘the Arm’?) and are promoting it with an interesting video featuring William Shatner, Simon R. Green, Walter Mosley, and Liz Williams, all authors who have dabbled in the space procedural realm. You can see the video here, and check out their […]

Analog_1978

Hugo by the Numbers Part 2

Let this serve as your reminder that final ballots for the 2013 Hugo Awards are due today. (07/31/13) With that in mind, I bring you my continued parade of Hugo Award statistics from across the years. This latest installment includes statistics from the other three fiction categories: Best Short Story, Best Novelette, and Best Novella. […]

JACK VANCE: VISIONS OF A DYING EARTH

After the last few S&S works of the early 1940s, such as “Dragon Moon” by Henry Kuttner and the short-lived Unknown, Sword & Sorcery lost steam. With Robert E. Howard dead for five or more years, Heroic Fantasy became a thing of the past with only the occasional Edmond Hamilton Weird Tales fantasy or anomalies […]

BLUE PENCILS AND BLOODY SWORDS: EDITORS OF S&S

It’s easy to discuss authors for their contributions are evident. You just have to read the stories. The great editors are harder to corral, for the editor’s job is one of selection, guidance, subjective acts that may be hard to understand in hindsight. (For instance, all those men and women who rejected Dune by Frank […]

Unforgiven

Crossroads: The Western Hero in Speculative Fiction

Someone once said that every story starts with someone either coming to town, or leaving town. And there is no genre for which this adage holds more true than the western. It probably takes us all of a second and a half to recognize the western hero, whether he’s wearing the stereotypical white hat or […]

The Princess Bride: Is this a Kissing Book?

Crossroads: Is this a Kissing Book? SFF’s Relationship with Romance

Whenever I think of speculative fiction’s relationship to romance, I am always reminded of that scene in The Princess Bride where Fred Savage’s character interrupts his grandpa and – voice dripping with scorn – asks: “Is this a kissing book?” The implication is that romance is antithetical to the cool stuff at the heart of […]

Sword & Sorcery – What’s In A Name?

Sword & Sorcery has become a term of derision since the 1980s. There are good reasons for this but much of that derision is out of ignorance. The barbarian baby has been thrown out with the Hyborian bath water. This blog will outline the history of S&S, its major players, its ups and downs, and […]