Christmas Horse by Vladislav Erko (c) Vladislav Erko

Christmas Horse by Vladislav Erko (c) Vladislav Erko


This year’s Parsec Awards, for excellence in speculative fiction podcasts, were announced on December 17.


She didn’t work much in genre unless you consider the film Big conventional fantasy (since it contains magic), but Penny Marshall, who also directed A League of Their Own and Awakenings, died on December 18. The cause of death is given as complications from diabetes.

Books and Writing:

Theo Downes-LeGuin wrote a memoir of his mother for the UK Guardian.

This list of highest-paid English language writers now included Michael Wolff, thanks to his White House expose Fire and Fury.

Jonathan Strahan has released the Table of Contents of The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year.

For, Judith Tarr (who loves horses) writes about her favorite movie about a white horse.

Ellen Cheeseman-Meyer is rereading Lois Macmaster Bujold’s Captian Vorpatril’s Alliance chapter by chapter for I’m including this recap and essay because it is holiday themed… and just so funny.

Speaking of, they are offering a short fiction newsletter. This looks like too good an idea to pass up!

Movies and TV:

Here’s the second trailer for Captain Marvel.

IO9 has some images from the Netflix Dark Crystal prequel.

Detail of crystalline formation in Lechuguilla Cave, courtesy of National Park Service

Detail of crystalline formation in Lechuguilla Cave, courtesy of National Park Service


The FCC will not allow California to tax texts, as the state was planning to do. The ruling hinges on the category texts fall into; The FCC sees them not as “telecommunications,” but more like email.

Justice for gravitational waves! Well, maybe. Last month, a small group of Danish physicists disputed the discovery of LIGO waves, saying that the scientists were confusing patterns in the noise for the waves. Two independent groups have confirmed the original finding. The Danish group says it will put out a paper soon that will prove the other groups are wrong. It’s very exciting.


Lechuguilla cave complex is one of the largest and most beautiful limestone complexes in the world. Until the 1980s, no one knew it was there. And here are some photos.


The men’s a Capella chorus Chanticleer sings Un Flambeau, Jeanette, Isabella. It’s about two minutes long.

By next week’s column, solstice and Christmas will have passed, so for those of you who celebrate, joyous holidays.

There will be no column on January 2, 2019.