Sherlock Holmes

Improbable Interviews – Adam Roberts

I have recently edited a new anthology of science fiction and fantasy stories about fantastical flora. The book, Improbable Botany, features authors who between them have won the Arthur C Clarke, British Science Fiction Association, John W. Campbell Memorial, Philip K. Dick, Nebula and Prometheus Awards, and been nominated for many more. The writers are: […]

Review – The Fictional Man by Al Ewing

Niles Golan is an ex-pat Brit in Hollywood. Never grown-up, he narrates his life with an internal monologue transforming his everyday inadequacies into triumphs. Niles is his own fictional creation: to himself, a genius novelist akin to the young Thomas Pynchon; to everyone else, the hack who writes the popular Kurt Power adventures novels. His […]

Review – The Fictional Man by Al Ewing (Solaris, 2013)

The Fictional Man, published by UK imprint Solaris, is based on an impossible conceit, one of those high concept movie-friendly ideas where one aspect of reality is altered from our world but things continue just the same. Absurd, but depending on how well it’s done we buy into it for the duration. Here it is generally very well done. Al Ewing is a breathtakingly clever writer and his conceit is that human cloning was perfected decades ago but then outlawed because everyone is entitled to their own unique identity.

We Can be Heroes

The conversation got me thinking about heroes and what characteristics are expected of a hero from generation to generation.

Sense of Wonder #2 – From the Movies

Earlier I wrote about what Damon Knight characterized as “a sense of wonder” that emerges at times in a science fiction story, or as in the case of this blog entry, in a movie. I said that the sense of wonder was “when we come across a scene or image or turn of phrase in […]

An Interview with Stephanie Osborne

Adam Gaffen for Amazing Stories: Welcome!  It seems appropriate that there’s a science fiction author who is a rocket scientist; how did one lead to the other? Stephanie Osborne: Thank you! And thank you for asking to interview me. My interest in space started out partly because of science fiction and partly because of watching […]

Elementary, my dear Watson-bot 2.0!

Crime and punishment. Both words are synonymous with genre fiction. Whether it is the flashy superhero racing to stop the next crisis or the “I’m too old for this shit” beat cop who stumbles upon a global conspiracy, we enjoy seeing criminals being taken down. For the next few weeks, however, I am going to be concerning […]

Dissecting Our Present: How SF Can Highlight Our Historical Bias

As Harry Turtledove, the master of alternate history, said in the introduction to The Best Alternate History Stories of the 20th Century, even historical memoirs can sometimes be so far from the truth they can be classified as science fiction. He used the example of Civil War veterans who highlighted their successes and blamed superiors or subordinates for the […]

The Classics: Edgar Allen Poe

I don’t intend here to eulogize Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) but to discuss some of the contributions he made to the areas of Horror, Science Fiction and Detective Fiction. Poe was born in Boston in 1809. One of the most interesting aspects of researching Poe’s background is that no one seems to know exactly what […]