This will be the final column of 2018. A safe and happy New Year’s Day to everyone who observes it.

Books and Writing:

Academy Award winner Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw Productions is accepting screenplay submissions.

In the solving-the-problem-we-didn’t-know-we-had category, offers an essay on how to make beer on a generation ship.

Sarah Gailey writes about seven books that helped her make it through a hard year. What I liked about this essay is that she tells us when and where she read each book.

In mid-December, two llama visited Scuppernong Books in Greensboro, North Carolina. LitHub gives the details here.

‘Tis the season of lists and here, the Barnes and Noble book bloggers share their favorite SFF books of 2018.

I just reread an Octavia Butler book and it got me thinking about Afrofuturism, so here’s an article about the author and the movement.

Movies and TV:

Aquaman earned $483 million worldwide its first weekend, topping the Mary Poppins remake. Here’s a review from the site.

LitHub shares some eagerly awaited film/TV adaptations coming in 2019. Some, like Good Omens, we knew about. There are other genre pieces on this list and some of them sound interesting. (Actually, they all do.)


Thanks to our own (retired) reviewer Stuart Starosta for his images from the Bodleian, where he and his family visited the Tolkien exhibit and finished up the trip with a jaunt to The Eagle and Child, where the Inklings met for a pint and conversation. These images make up the bulk of this post. Thanks again Stuart!

Here’s are Stuart’s comments:

“In September we visited the Tolkien Exhibit at the Bodleian in Oxford.

[caption id=”attachment_94082″ align=”aligncenter” /> The Exhibit-themed book written by the curator. Stuart says this inside is just as beautiful.

“It was a small but amazing exhibit filled with Tolkien’s book covers, original artwork, maps, letters, etc. No photos were allowed but it was an absolutely fascinating insight into his life and incredibly fertile imagination.

Sharing a repast the Inklings themselves might have enjoyed.


Here is a gallery of 23 champagne-based cocktails, all set for New Year’s. Each photo has a link to the recipe. They range from easy to elaborate (lavender syrup, anyone?)

Atlas Obscura shares the details of beautifully decorated Hungarian shortbread.

There will be no column next week.


  • 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.

    View all posts