I was introduced to Haggard Hawks on Twitter, and rather than do a word for Wednesday (I really, really, reeeeeelly wanted to do “trumpery” but I do attempt to avoid political commentary here) I thought I would introduce you to the blog, which is a wonder. Here is a link to some words from Samuel Johnson’s time. If you follow Hawks on Twitter you get a cool word daily. For me, that’s like getting a piece of really good chocolate every single day.
The Pulitzer Prize was announced this week. For fiction, the winner was Viet Thanh Nguyen for his period spy novel The Sympathizer. Kelly Link’s short story collection Get in Trouble was a finalist.
Jerry Pournelle won the National Space Society’s Robert Heinlein award. This is a lifetime achievement award for those who “support space science, exploration, development and settlement.” The award will be delivered at a conference held in Puerto Rico.
Speaking of Awards, Part One… File 770 shared the updates DragonCon has made to its new award rules. Note that the eligibility period has changed.
Speaking of Awards, Part Two… Reports of the death of the Hugo awards might be slightly exaggerated, with over 4,000 nominating ballots cast this year. The finalists will be announced April 26, 2016
Speaking of Awards, Part Three; The Horror Writers Association (HWA) hosted its own controversy with the choice of the jury for the Bram Stoker Award. This one might be resolved, since the writer in question, David A. Riley, is no longer on the jury.
Books and Writing
The Shoalhaven librarians in Nowra, Australia, wanted to do a little music video for Library Week and Library Workers’ Day, April 13. Here it is, enjoy!
Under “Books” or under “Games?” Under “Books” or… okay, Books it is then. On his blog, Brandon Sanderson announced the Mistborn board game, House War, based on Sanderson’s best-selling trilogy, set in the world of metal magic. Nope, should have gone under “Games.”
Sanderson also shared photos of cosplaying fans at a couple of conventions he attended. It looks like fun.
John Barrowman plans to write a comic book series based on the Doctor Who spinoff TV show Torchwood. His sister will collaborate with him on the project.
Old Woman Alert; yes, once again we crones are leading the way, according to the UK Guardian. “Older women” (women over 45, in case you were wondering) are driving digital reading. According to a study done by Kobo, of people who use an e-reader more than 30 minutes a day, women over 45 account for about 75%. (By the way, I’m calling myself a crone, not anyone else, unless you like the term “crone,” and then you’re included.)
From Bored Panda, men have “man caves,” women have “she-sheds,” which look a lot like converted gardening sheds. They’re gorgeous, though.
Movies and TV
SyFy’s tenth season of Face Off ended with three mini-movies and, of course, a winner. I liked all three finalists this season, and I didn’t really have a person I was rooting for, so I was happy with the outcome. Channel Guide walks us through the season finale.
Hollywood Reporter reviews the season 4 opener of Orphan Black, BBC America’s edgy, snarky clone thriller. I’m including a review from AV Club, too, because I think they review genre better. The consensus is that while the clone show got a little wild in season three, with numerous villains, subplots, schemes and doubles-crosses, with this season opener it is returning to what it does well. What it does best, of course, is create new characters for Tatiana Maslany to play.
Paramount is making a live action version of the classic Japanese anime Ghost in the Shell. They have cast well-known American-Japanese actress Scarlett Johansson as the main character Major Kasunagi. What’s that? You didn’t know Johansson was of Japanese origin? And that’s the problem. The Guardian summarizes the issues with casting a white American for this iconic Japanese role. I’m one of the people who thinks we don’t need a live-action version of this piece of animated art, personally.
On the Star Wars, the Force Awakens, front, JJ Abrams continues to muddy the water about Rey’s parentage. Surely by now we call know that he can’t be trusted, right? He loves to drop false clues.
Apparently Good Omens, written by Sir Terry Pratchell and Neil Gaiman, is finally coming to television in an adaptation overseen by Gaiman. The “story behind the story” reads like something Gaiman and Pratchett would have written; Pratchett sent Gaiman a letter to be read after Pratchett’s death, in which he requested Gaiman pursue the adaptation.
Here’s the first Doctor Strange trailer. I’m pretty jazzed by those Inception-style cityscapes, but OMG, Tilda Swinton!
A Kotaku columnist shares the morass he stepped into when he began to cover a story of an employee who was fired by Nintendo. Nor only did the employee become the target of online hatred, death threats and doxing… so did the columnist, just for covering the story.
Game of Thrones’s Sophie Turner reads the lyrics of Adele’s song “Hello” in the character of Jon Snow. I know, right? After some other impressions, she also lip-syncs to a Justin Bieber song. It’s priceless. Enjoy.
Kotaku reviews the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift and tells us what we need to know about Virtual Reality headsets. After each factor, the writer gives an “edge” to one set or the other. He missed the “edge” for name; obviously “Oculus Rift” is far cooler than Vive.
Here are twenty-five seconds of breathtaking visuals from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observtory. These are not the golden arches I am used to.