This week’s word for Wednesday come courtesy of horror writer Laura Blackwell and it’s dwaal (dwah-l), a noun, meaning a dreamy or dazed state. The word originated in Afrikaans, which derives from Dutch.


The short list for the Theodore Sturgeon Awards was announced at Locus. The semi-finalists include Brooke Bolander for “You Shall Know Her by the Trail of the Dead,” (Lightspeed), Greg Egan, “The Four Thousand, the Eight Hundred” (Asimov’s) and Hao Jingfang for “Folding Beijing” (Uncanny Magazine). The award will be presented at MidAmeriCon during the Campbell Conference Banquet.

Nicole Beharie (l) and Tim Mison, Sleepy Hollow, FOX

Speaking of Awards, Part I: Last year during the Hugo debates, many people talked about various groups just creating their own awards. Well, DragonCon is trying to do it. Here is the press release. For this year, the nomination period will be open from sometime in April through July 25, 2016. In future years the nomination period will be longer according to the FAQs although a time frame is not given.

 “To be eligible for the 2016 Dragon Awards the book, comic, game, movie, or, at least one episode of any series has to have been released Between April 1, 2015, and the close of nominations, July 25, 2016.”

This eligibility period is more than one year, but I think this may only be for the first year. In ongoing years, though, the period will have to be mid-year to mid-year. The rules look tricky, you can’t change or correct your vote (even if you just typed something wrong,) it is heavy on longer fictional works –no novellas, no short fiction, and the name Dragon Awards already exists. On the upside, it includes games. Brad R. Torgersen, a vocal member of the Sad Puppy splinter group, thinks the Dragon Award will supersede the Hugo. I think this will be an interesting experiment. Good for them for trying.

Speaking of Awards, Part II:  After seventeen years, the U.K. Guardian is ending its First Book prize.

Books and Writing

Yanni Kuznia has been promoted to Managing Editor and COO of Subterranean Press. (It’s in the 4/1/16 week list). SF Signal interviewed Kuznia last year. (Both links courtesy of File 770.)

NPR news offers some speculative fiction suggestions for your friends who think they hate SFF. (Including Atwood’s The Blind Assassin is cheating, though.)

Stephanie Burgis uses Fantasy Book Café to thank some of the women SFF writers who came before her.

An update from one of last week’s Links; Hungarian language magazine Galactika may be offering payment to the writers whose work it translated and used without permission.

Thanks to SFF writer and editor Marta Randall for this link to great one-sentence quotes about writing, from Lit Reactor.

Movies and TV

The Cast of Rogue One; A Star Wars Story, starring Felicity Jones (Disney)

Kristian Harloff, John Campea and Dennis Tzenga from Collilder geek out over the trailer from Rogue One.

Hardcore Henry, a Russian film shot entirely with head-cams, seems poised to change action films, basically trying to create a first-person experience. Generally, while the technique is interesting, most critics and audience members comment on the lack of characterization and plot. Audiences like it more than critics do, which should be no surprise.

Here is a trailer for a strange and beautiful looking film, Tale of Tales.  The 2016 trailer was released on April 1, so I was a little… well, not suspicious, but let’s say skeptical. It looks like it’s the real deal, and it was shown at Cannes last year. Here are a couple of other links about the project: a review from the Hollywood Reporter  and the wikipedia page for Giambattista Basile.

It’s finale time for many of our favorite shows, in the case of Sleepy Hollow, one of our former favorite shows. SPOILERS, SPOILERS, SPOILERS so read no further if you haven’t seen the episode or aren’t on Twitter. Here is the link.

The Cast of The Magicians, SyFy. I don’t think everyone’s going to graduate.

Also, SPOILERS, SPOILERS, SPOILERS; Polygon weighs in on the one-hour-and-six-minute season finale of The Magicians. I thought this show had gotten back on track around Episode 8, and I liked the way the writers used plot twists and reveals here to re-create, to some extent, Lev Grossman’s critique of the “hero” and “the chosen one” motifs. On the other hand, I can’t say I disagree with the Polygon observations either. The link is here.


Stubby the Rocket shares the breathtaking needlepoint versions of Dune covers. These are stunning. It’s even more amazing when you read that she stitched them freehand. (Courtesy of Jana.)

Inspired by Seanan McGuire’s Every Heart a Doorway, has mapped every portal world into a multiverse. Then, they leave a template in the article for the Do-It-Yourselfers to tackle your own favorite speculative fiction worlds.

Salon provides a quasi-scientific article about the behaviors we find creepy, and why. I don’t know if I agree with all their conclusions, but it’s a good conversation starter. Also, a question; being “creepy” is different from just being “a creep,” isn’t it?

It’s morbid, I’ll admit, but several sites have reported that convicted serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer’s childhood home is for rent during the GOP convention. I chose a link that was not dated April 1, because I was not completely sure this wasn’t a joke. I’m pretty sure that it’s not. This article still has plenty of snark. The walls and ceilings that sheltered one of our more notorious killers will probably provide a tranquil respite from the insanity of the convention, right?


Space X made a successful ocean landing of its rocket last week.

The International Space Station gets the space version of an Aero bed, with an inflatable extension. Or, as The Economist put it in another article: “Earth to Space Bouncy Castle 1…”

Sometime between April 4 and April 7, the spacecraft Keppler put itself into emergency mode, NASA has reported. NASA worked hard to get the spacecraft out of EM, but communication was challenging. Even at the speed of light, it takes 13 minutes for a message to be received and an answer returned. Early Sunday morning, engineers were able to move the spacecraft out of EM and return it to its new mission. The NASA engineers probably feared that the Keppler was going to rent Jeffrey Dahmer’s house.


There are probably many, many things in the world that are cuter or sillier than a baby rhinoceros that thinks he’s a goat, but I couldn’t find them. Enjoy the hijinks.


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  • Marion Deeds

    Marion Deeds, with us since March, 2011, is the author of the fantasy novella ALUMINUM LEAVES. Her short fiction has appeared in the anthologies BEYOND THE STARS, THE WAND THAT ROCKS THE CRADLE, STRANGE CALIFORNIA, and in Podcastle, The Noyo River Review, Daily Science Fiction and Flash Fiction Online. She’s retired from 35 years in county government, and spends some of her free time volunteering at a second-hand bookstore in her home town.