The winner of the National Prize for Arabic Fiction, Ibrahim Nasrallah, won with the novel The Second War of the Dog, which contains speculative elements.

The Locus Awards finalists are announced.

Robert Jackson Bennett writes about what it’s like to have a work nominated for a Hugo (he is up for Best Series for  the brilliant DIVINE CITIES trilogy).


The column will be on hiatus the next two weeks, returning May 23.

Housekeeping: It appears that emails from Giveaway winners may not have reached me. Please check our Giveaways to see to if you are a winner. If you are and have replied and don’t have a response from me, please try the Contact Form again.


MythCon will be held in Atlanta, Georgia in July
. Call for papers has been extended to May 15, 2018.

Books and Writing:

The Cracked blog talks about (bad) ways to shorthand character. Readers and viewers (and, sadly, writers) will recognize several of these. announced that Angry Robot Books will be publishing two Coast-Guards-in-Space novels by Myke Cole in 2019. is also open for novella submissions now. Scroll down to novella submissions. They are going to open two windows; one for finished works and one in June for drafts of novellas. I think that’s fascinating.

The Cambridge University library tower is being opened to the public in an exhibit. The library is entitled by law to receive one copy of every volume copyrighted in Britain. They have a first British edition of The Hobbit, for instance. Curators are quick to dispel the longstanding rumor that the upper floors are filled with a trove of Victorian pornography.

Our own Jana Nyman will take the mic now to say a few words about Tor’s #FearlessWomen blog tour:

Jana: Starting this May, Tor Books is launching a #FearlessWomen blog tour and campaign promoting new novels by debut and established writers of speculative fiction, with the goal of “encouraging fans to start a dialogue about women in publishing, their worlds, their voices, and their unique stories.” Authors will include Robyn Bennis, Mary Robinette Kowal, Jacqueline Carey, and V.E. Schwab.

Marion: Those are some of our favorites.

Jana:  And there are many more! Keep an eye on Fantasy Literature over the next few months, here and on Twitter (@FanLit), as we’ll be featuring exclusive publication-day excerpts from books like By Fire Above, The Calculating Stars, City of Lies, and other books that we hope you’ll be as excited about as we are.

I hope this isn’t a repeat, but if it is, it’s still good. Vulture decides the top 100 “influential pages” in USA comic book history. Hat tip to Kat.

George R.R. Martin tells his fans that once again, the next book in Song of Ice and Fire will not be released in 2018. A book about Westeros will come out, though… it’s an imaginary history” of the Westeros kings, which Martin humorously refers to as his “GRRMarillion.”

Ars Technica has one of those stories that sounds like it should be fiction but wasn’t. The Ninth U.S. District Court of Appeals has upheld a lower court’s finding that the crested macaque called Naruto by humans is not the copyright holder of images he took of himself after he pilfered a nature photographer’s camera. Yes, while People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals filed a lawsuit against the photographer (who used the macaque selfies in a book) on behalf of the other primate, both courts ruled that Naruto could not hold copyright because Naruto wasn’t a person. The photographer does not have copyright either, because he didn’t take the pictures. Intellectual property law is complicated! And just for the record, Naruto takes better selfies than I do.

Speculative works swept the Tony nominations this year, with SpongeBob Squarepants tying for most nominations, and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child doing well, as did the stage adaptation of Frozen.

TV and Movies:

James Corden takes us on the Avengers: Infinity War bus tour. Thanks to File 770 for this twelve-minute video!

Speaking of Infinity War, its first weekend box office earnings were great.


May 5th is the scheduled west-coast launch of the InSight Mars lander. provides dates and time for viewing. (Thanks to File770.)