Cover of the Iron Widow, by Xiran Jay ZhaoNew York City’s Comic-Con resumed in-person events last weekend. The organizers followed through on their promise of reduced capacity, and required masking and other safety protocols, including proof of vaccination.

John Scalzi announced that the Tor Essentials edition of his comic novel Redshirts is available now.

Publishers Weekly also reported that book club favorites for this month include the gothic horror novel The Death of Sarah Jane Lawrence by Caitlin Starling.

Also from Publishers Weekly, the short list in YA for the National Book Award.

This is from 2015, but I include it in honor of the season. Dale Peck, writing for LitHub, shares memoir and critique of Shirley Jackson’s brilliant novel We Have Always Lived in the Castle.

The Otherwise Fellowships (formerly the Tiptree Award) are open for applications until October 31. The $500 fellowships are awarded to people who use speculative narrative to explore or expand how we think about gender.

Statue of the Black Ghost that guards a Lithuanian city. Image, Atlas Obscura

Statue of the Black Ghost that guards a Lithuanian city. Image, Atlas Obscura

The Horror Writers Association shares an interview with indigenous horror writer Owl Goingback.

Game developer and coder Brianna Wu will collaborate with Mind Riot Entertainment to develop a TV series based on her experiences with Gamergate. The series will be fiction.

Allison Alexander contrasts Robert Jordan’s gender-rigid magic in THE WHEEL OF TIME with The Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Xhao.

At Writer’s Excuses, the podcasters discuss “the difficult middle” using a technique they call MICE (Milieu, Inquiry, Characterization and Events).

This pumpkin-carving video shows one way to transfer an image onto the pumpkin. Lots of good tips about angling, too.

Atlas Obscura’s introduces the statue of a Lithuanian “black ghost” that is not terribly creepy after all, although the sculpture is effective at evoking chills.


  • 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.

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