Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tharks, Red Martians, and a Man Named John Carter

Not so long ago I finished reading the sci-fi classic A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs. I don't want to go into all the details of the story, so if you want to learn more, you should check it out on Wikipedia. And if you still have the urge to give it a read after seeing what I have to say and learning more about it, you can find A Princess of Mars and the rest of the books in the series for FREE over at Project Gutenberg.

Small Things, Waiting Beasts, and Indestructible Aliens

Holy Moses, it looks like I have some write-ups to do. Sorry about that. Really life had to take the driver's seat and I had to let all this sit in the back. But now that I have a few hours, I plan on getting caught up as far as possible. It looks like I should have had another couple of posts the week of August 27th, which means I have a total of ten posts to make to get caught up to today and caught up with my New Year's resolution. I think I should be able to do that by this upcoming Monday. And then I will have a couple of new posts. New content is on its way.

Anyways, for today there are a couple of good shorts for you. What are they? "To be Undone of Such Small Things" by Damien Walters Grintalis, "Waiting for Beauty" by Marie Brennan, and "Diplomatic Immunity" by Robert Sheckley. Enough of the chit-chat. Time for you to discover a couple of new stories.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Clones, Cyberarms, and Factors of War

Here's the post I should have posted last Monday. Look for the two posts that I should post this week tomorrow. Stories for last week include "Flash Bang Remember" by Tina Connolly and Caroline M. Yoachim, "Neither Big Nor Easy" by Michael S. Roberts, and "The K-Factor" by Harry Harrison. Let me move out of your way. Here are the links to these awesome stories.

They've Been Working on the Railroad, All the Live-Long Day

Well, it looks like I'm running behind again. I should have had this post up nearly two weeks ago last week (I guess I was wrong). I had hoped to get it up this last week, but time seemed to just get away from me again. Well, I have some time now, so let's get this up and me caught up.

Recently I finished watching the first season of Hell on Wheels. All in all, it's pretty much a modern day western. This show, set just after the Civil War, follows the lives of a few people as they work on building the Union Pacific Railroad.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Off to Atlantis!

So, like I said yesterday, I kind of forgot to post last week. To make up for that, yesterday, you received two sets of stories, and now today you will receive another two posts. So here is the first of two posts that you should receive today. This one will take a look into the first season of Stargate: Atlantis.

Monday, August 13, 2012

An Oak Tree, An Armless Maiden, and a Dude Named Tulan

Here's your second set of stories for the day. These are also the stories that you should be receiving for today. Those stories are "Oak Solid" by Peter Wood, "Armless Maidens of the American West" by Genevieve Valentine, and "Tulan" by C.C. MacApp. That's enough of me talking. Here are your stories.

Wives, Habits, and Guns

Shoot. It looks like I forgot to make a post last week. Don't worry. You'll be receiving two posts today. One that you should have received last week and in a few hours the one that you are supposed to receive today. So, let's see. I think I have some stories for you that I should have had up on this last Monday. Yes. Yes, I do. The stories this week are "Mantis Wives" by Kij Johnson, "The Bookmaking Habits of Select Species" by Ken Liu, and "Gun for Hire" by Mack Reynolds. Now let me get out of your way so can get to your stories.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Stargate SG-1, Season 7

I'm still in the process of watching Stargate SG-1. It's not that the show is better than other shows out there. I think it has more to do with the fact that it's just addictive. But season seven of this series is pretty big. Here are just a couple of the big things that happen:

Monday, July 30, 2012

Soldiers, Squids, and Scientists

Check it out. It looks like I'm still more or less on some sort of schedule, though I am posting this a little later than most of the other more recent posts. But hey, it's up and you'll even get a fun little post for tomorrow. Anyways, pretty good stories for today. You'll be getting "A Soldier's Son" by Steve Coate, "The Sweet Spot" by A. M. Dellamonica, and "Warning from the Stars" by Ron Cocking. So, without anymore yammering on, here are this week's stories. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Men Wearing Redshirts, Beware

Last week, I finished reading Redshirts by John Scalzi. I finished this one of rather quickly, being the slow reader that I am. It only took me about three days to finish it. That should be a sign of how much fun this book is. However, I will admit that the book is targeted towards a very specific audience. For some, this may be a bad thing, for others a good. I see it as a good thing. Scalzi is only writing what he would like to read. But he knows the audience he is writing for, mainly because he belongs to it. So, in writing for himself, he is writing for his fans. You can't go wrong there.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Masks, Holograms, and a Dog from Mars

Still on schedule, more or less. And this week, I have for you some good stories. There's a couple that deal with aesthetics (or just covering them up...) and one with a Martian dog. The stories are "Real Faces" by Ken Liu, "The Switch" by Sarah Stanton, and "Martians Never Die" by Lucius Daniel.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

An Hour (or Two) of Darkness

I watched The Darkest Hour over the weekend. I know it's not the greatest thing to say, but I really was not a fan of this film. I enjoyed the concept of pure energy invading Earth. And I was even with it when they started to use the aliens' own energy against them. But something in the movie turned me off.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Looking for Silk, Reading in the Key of Prose, and Finding Dope on Mars

Looks like I'm still on some sort of a schedule. Let's hope that it can stay that way. Alright, what do I have for you this week? It looks like another three short stories that you will be able to find online for free. I know, I know. It's a magical word, "free." But yes, it is true: You do not have to pay to read these stories. So, if your Monday is going a little slower than usual, be sure to check one or more of these out. The stories for you this week are "The Silk Merchant" by Ken Liu, "Requiem in the Key of Prose" by Jake Kerr, and "The Dope on Mars" by Jack Sharkey.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

A Return to the Land of the Second Dimension

I finally got around to finishing off Flatland by Edwin A. Abbott. I felt the middle section of the book started to drag a little bit, which may or may not be my reasoning for taking a small break from it. But I'm glad I pushed myself to finish it. The last third of this story is where the real action takes place.

Monday, July 9, 2012

A Love Machine, a Smart Vac, and an Escaping Prisoner

Finally, I'm back on some sort of schedule. Now the idea is to somehow stay on this schedule. I'll find a way to do that somehow or another. Let's just call these last couple of months a transitional period

Anyways, I have some fun stories for you. The two more recent stories deal with robotics: the first story with artificial intelligence and the second with smart technology (though not AI). Your stories for this week are Luke R. Pebler's "New Beau," Lee Hallison's "Taking Care of Ma," and "A World Is Born" by Leigh Douglass Brackett.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Stargate, Season 6

I recently finished watching the sixth season of Stargate. I don't know what it is about the show, but there is something about it that keeps sucking me in. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that it's a little campy and the show is able to make fun of itself.

The sixth season felt a little weird to me. And probably to everyone who has watched the series chronologically. The main reason? Daniel Jackson is no longer a part of the team. In fact, after Daniel ascends, Jonas Quinn, the scientist from the world in the fifth season where they were trying to develop something akin to the atom bomb, takes over his spot. It felt kind of wrong, but I understand why they did it. They needed someone who was "book smart " on the team, and he was able to fill that place.

Other than that, the season was pretty decent. It was pretty cool to see Daniel return in a couple of episodes, usually guiding his friends through some form of trouble or another. And the season finale where he battles Anubis is quite spectacular as well.

Soldiers, Watchmakers, and Kids on Mars

Hey folks. I'm still playing catch up. Here are a couple of short stories.

The Indestructible Blob

Whoa... Looks like I have a little pickup to play. I'll try to post a few things tonight before posting anything tomorrow. What do I need to get all caught up? It looks Like I will need a short stories post and one more after this one. Anyways...

I finished watching The Blob recently. It's a very campy sci-fi movie from the late 1950's, but it's still a lot of fun to watch.

Basically, a meteor, which carried the blob, falls to the Earth and begins to terrorize a small town. The only people to notice it at first, besides those who are taken by the blob, are hometown hero Steve and his girlfriend, the lovable Jane. They try to warn the townspeople, first going to the police as soon as they find suspicious activity at Doctor Hallen's house. Marking it up as a case of "kids being kids," the police don't believe them at first. It takes a little persistence on the part of Steve and Jane, but they talk a few of their friends into helping them. The kids end up waking up the entire town. At first the police feel that it's a case of "Peter calling 'wolf,'" but they soon learn that the threat is very real. It takes them a couple of tries but they finally discover that it doesn't like the cold. The police lead the rest of the town in freezing the blob and sending it off to the arctic, with a questionable ending to the movie.

While watching this, I thought it would be kind of cool to write a short from the blob's point of view. You know, what would it be like if the blob was only swallowing people in order to gain a collective knowledge of its new planet? What if the blob became those it swallowed What if it wanted to be peaceful? The peace would certainly not have lasted long. Especially with most people's initial reaction to it: "Kill it!"

I still might write that story sometime. If I ever find a little time and have enough energy, I might sit down and write that out.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Another Place Where Blood and Oil Cause Interstellar War

My apologies for posting this so late. But look at the good news: I'm finally on schedule! One post today, and one post tomorrow. Anyways, onto the stories. Today we have "Elsewhere" by Benjamin Rosenbaum, "Metal and Flesh" by Steven R. Stewart, and "Victory" by Lester del Rey. Dig in.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

One Distant Scape

Along with watching Stargate, I've been trying to get myself into Farscape. It's an interesting show. And I will admit that it was a little hard to get into at first because of the puppets and the ridiculous costumes. However, the show is beginning to grow on me, ridiculous costumes and all. When you realize that the creators just wanted to have fun making the show rather than make something serious out of it, you begin to cave in a little bit and start to have fun along with it.

I'm not quite finished with the first season yet. So thus far there has not been much of an overall story line like in Stargate. But I suppose if I keep watching, one will pop up. Keep following me. I will try to post something up here as I finish/begin each season.

To the Stars Through a Little Gate

For the last couple of months, I've been watching Stargate SG1. And within the last couple of days, I entered into season six. This means that I am now halfway through the series. What do I think of it? It's a fun show. It can be somewhat campy at times, but it never outweighs the fun.

An Immersion, an Origin, and One Big Shot

Here's the first of three posts for the day. It's another tardy short story post. Look for two more posts today. I will be very angry with myself if I do not get them up.

So, the stories. Let's make this quick and simple. We'll start off with Aliette de Bodard's "Immersion," followed by Ari Goelman's "Origin," and ending the post with "One Shot" by James Blish. Good stories. Hope you enjoy.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

James Dean, a Dragon Queen, and a Bunch of Leadies

Where does all our time go? It's already Saturday, and I haven't had too much of a chance to write this out most of the week. Well, let's just get all of these tardy posts out of the way today. We might as well, right? There are three four late posts counting this one. I had planned to post all of them today, but I'm just getting this post up now, late on Saturday night. I'll get the other two three posts up for you tomorrow. I hope that sounds good for you. And then we'll start the week off fresh with a couple more posts from me for the new schedule. Wow, a lot more work than I expected. For me, right now, it's it's not being on time, but rather making sure that I get this stuff done and out. Then I can worry about being on time.

Back to main point of this post, the stories. There's three of them again. Just like always. This post, the stories include "The Cristóbal Effect" by Simon McCaffery, "Catastrophe Baker and the Dragon Queen" by Mike Resnick, and, last but definitely not least, "The Defenders" by Philip K. Dick. Here are your stories. Let your weekend of reading now commence.

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Land of the Second Diminsion

It's taken me quite a while, but over the last couple of months, I have been flipping, on and off, through the pages of Edwin A. Abbott's Flatland. And now I am just about two-thirds of the way through it. The story itself is quite interesting, and considering the date it was  written just adds to this story's intrigue.

Written before the turn of the century, this story plays with the idea of life existing in a two-dimensional universe. Something makes me want to say this story was definitely ahead of its time. Well, of what I have read so far, much of it is not a story, but rather full of descriptions of this two-dimensional universe and the beings which possess it.

Their society consists of a rigid class system, with isosceles triangles at the bottom and circles at the top. The main character, and our narrator, is a lawyer of the square class.

There are a few more rules and laws of the world that the main character discusses, but I will save that for another time. Perhaps next week, after i finish reading this fun story.

If you are interested in reading this story, it's available over at Project Gutenberg. Just follow this link.

* * * * *
Any of you who follow me may have noticed that I forgot to post what I said I would over the weekend. This is part of me trying to make up for that. Look for another post or two later tonight, and then another one or two tomorrow night. I really want to make up for my transgressions.

Friday, June 15, 2012

The Cosmic, Specter-Bombing Internet

Wow, I totally forgot about posting last week. And this is the weekend that I was going to do that big conversion. I guess being out of town over a weekend will sometimes do that to you. However, I do have the stories that I meant to post about last week ready and waiting to get posted now. So let's get those suckers up. I'll do my normal punishing of myself by posting another three stories tomorrow morning as well as another two posts tomorrow evening (one for last week and one actually for tomorrow night).

The stories I have for you tonight are pretty awesome. The first one comes from Technology Review's Science Fiction anthology. It's "Specter-Bombing the Beer Goggles" by Paul Di Filippo. The second story comes from the New Yorker's special sci-fi edition earlier this month. The story? "My Internet" by Jonathan Lethem. The classic story of science fiction this month, coming from the year 1930, is "Cosmic Express" by Jack Williamson. My apologies ahead of time for the lack of stories available online. But I wouldn't worry about it if I were you. You'll be getting another handful of stories tomorrow.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Get Your Hands Off Me, You Damn, Dirty Ape!

You want to know what that idea I had to save for a rainy day? Well, here it is. A couple of weeks ago, I watched Planet of the Apes. Not the newer version with Mark Wahlberg. No, the original movie. The one starring Charlton Heston. Now, I'll grant that the movie is a little dated with its sets and dialogue, but otherwise it's a great movie.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Accountants, a Captain, Some Superheroes, and the Great Nothing Beyond

Hey everyone. Getting on here late as usual again. Let's see. It looks like I've managed to scrounge up four stories for you this week. Yes, you read that correctly. Four stories. Why the extra one? Well, it's the first of June and I've only just receive a couple of new magazine issues on my Kindle. Let's use up the rest of May if we can first. Next week I'll start to get you your stories from June. There will be three of them again. So don't get used to having four. I'm only spoiling you today. (This is where I would use an emoticon of a smiley face sticking out its tongue.)

Your four stories this week are "The Cross-Time Accountants Fail to Kill Hitler Because Chuck Berry Does the Twist" by C. C. Finlay, "Captain Quasar and the So-Called Emperor of the Universe" by Milo James Fowler, "The Non-Event" by Mike Carey, and "The Nothing Equation" by Tom Godwin. I could probably go on chit-chatting, but let's move on

Attention: Some Changes to Come Later this Month

This really isn't a big deal. Just that it's the beginning of a new month, and I'm already planning for a few weeks from now. I haven't done anything yet except make a couple of plans.

Anyway, here's the problem and what I plan to do about it: Way back in December, I made a New Year's Resolution to post at least twice a week, with one article being on short stories and the other on whatever (though it seems to have turned into a place for all my brain droppings about the books I read and movies I watch). I really like doing this. It pushes me to do something different, and it's turned something that felt at first like a chore into a pleasure. Right now, I post at the end of the week, on Fridays and Saturdays. The problem is that I often find myself scrambling at the last minute trying to muster something up for a post.  I don't know if it's because I'm posting at the end of the week or not, but anyways, this bad habit has got to change. And that's where this plan comes in. Sometime after the middle of the month, I'm going to move the days I post those articles from the end of the week to the beginning. This means instead of getting the posts on Friday and Saturday, I'll start posting them on Monday and Tuesday. This is not only a test for you, the readers, but also for me. I hope that posting at the beginning of the week will prove to be a better motivator than posting at the end of the week. Don't worry. This does not mean that there will be a couple of posts missing this month. Without the change, it looks like June would see five set of posts, and I plan to give you five sets of posts, starting tonight with four (yes, you heard me, four) short stories and tomorrow on that thing I promised to save for a rainy day.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Nineteen Eighty-What?

Hey everybody. Sorry for yesterday. My alter ego is working on a top secret project, and he didn't really leave me any time to come over here and write up a little something for all of you out there. Any hoo, I'm here now, so let's get started.

I finished another novel this last week. I feel like I'm starting to read more than I ever did back in college. It really does equip you for a lifetime of education. Anyways, the book I finished this week was George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four. It wasn't exactly what I thought it was.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Moon Chess, Mothers, and a Misplaced Battleship

Welcome back for another Friday. Are you ready to receive a couple of stories for the weekend? Hope you are because you're getting them anyways. The first story is "All the Things the Moon Is Not" by Alexander Lumans. This week's story from an anthology is "Evidence in a Case of Abandonment: One Daughter's Personal Account" by M. Rickert. Lastly, the story from the past is "The Misplaced Battleship" by Harry Harrison. The stories this week are not quite as action-packed as the stories I usually pick, but they are just as good, if not better in their own rights. So, take a break and relax. It's the weekend. You might as well enjoy it.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Another Extraterrestrial

Shucks... I wasn't able to finish a book this week. Well, that's okay. I might have something better right now anyways. I got a visit from my brother, and as always, I felt it better to spend some time with him than all by myself, curled up with a book. So I watched a couple of movies with him. One of them I'll talk about tonight, and the other one I'll save for a rainy day.

What's the movie of the night then, you ask? And why might it be better than a book?
The movie of the night is Alien. To be honest, I don't know if it's necessarily better than a book, but many people feel that the movie is a good primer for Ridley Scott's upcoming film, Prometheus. I can't tell you how much of a primer it is without seeing the new movie, but it's still fun to go back and watch the classics anyways. This was my second time watching this movie, and I feel like I caught a lot that I didn't in my first viewing.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Centenarians, Soldiers, and Meteor Miners

Another Friday is here, and I hope you're all ready for the weekend. I have some action-packed stories for you today. The recent story published in a magazine is "Nightside on Callisto" by Linda Nagata. Next, the story from an anthology is "Jungle Walkers" by David Klecha and Tobias S. Buckell. Lastly, the story from over half a century ago is "Salvage in Space" by Jack Williamson. So, with no further ado, I'll move out of the way so that you can enjoy your stories.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Buyers and Sellers in Space, Part 2

Hey, sorry I forgot to leave a post here last night. I know I promised, but the day kind of got away from me. Let's see. Where were we now? The last time we were here, I was going on about The Space Merchants by Frederik Pohl and Cyril M. Kornbluth. I think I left off at the point where the action began in the book. That would be the assassination attempts on Mitch Courtenay's life. From there, it's a pretty fun read. But first, I think a little primer might be of service.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Buyers and Sellers in Space

I promised yesterday that I would have a post for today, and here is the first part of it (the latter part you will receive tomorrow). Earlier this week, I finished The Space Merchants by Frederik Pohl and Cyril M. Kornbluth. I will admit, it was a little difficult to get into, but I feel rewarded that I was able to finish the novel. It's a fun little story packed wit a bit of espionage and intrigue. More or less the stuff of secret agents than a science fiction story.

The Space Merchants is set in a not-so-distant future where the moon is beginning to become populated and Venus has begun to gain some hype for much of the same reason. In this future, the United States government has essentially been replaced by corporate America. Corporations hold seats in congress, and the President is a smug little man who often gets left out of the loop (I would kind of like to see what Pohl and Kornbluth have done with the judicial system).

I guess what took me so long to get into the story was the lack of action in the first quarter to half of the book. Not that there wasn't any. There just wasn't enough. Here's what happens. We meet our protagonist, star-classed copywriter Mitch Courtenay, shortly before he is given the reins for the Venus advertising project. Courtenay is a little reluctant, but realizes it will give him a large boost in his status. We also learn that he has a wife, or a wife-to-be, though she is beginning to think about leaving him. Much of the book is Mitch dwelling on her in one way or another.

After taking over the Venus project, things begin to heat up a little for Courtenay. Firstly, he meets with the first man to visit Venus. A short man, no taller than three feet and weighing no more than ninety pounds, who was selected only to travel to Venus for his size. He ends up being more trouble than he is worth for Mitch, though really not too much trouble at all. Around this time there are two assassination attempts on Courtenay's life. This is also just about where the action starts to pick up.

I think I'll leave it at that for tonight. Come back tomorrow for a little bit more of the story. I don't want to give away any spoilers, but I do want to be honest in letting you know where some of the fun parts of the story are.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

An Omnilingual Bound Oracle

Today is Saturday. Yesterday was Friday. What happened to the stories from yesterday? I promise I didn't forget. It's more like I was busy yesterday and passed out before I could finish them. So that means, today you'll be receiving the short story post, and tomorrow you will receive the post you should have got today. It'll be fun.

Enough with the chit-chat now. Here's what you should look forward to in this post. The more recent story is Frank Cavallo's "The Oracle of Ganymede". The story from an anthology is "Forever Bound" by Joe Haldeman. Last but not least is the classic story. This week it is H. Beam Piper's "Omnilingual". Sit back and enjoy these stories over your weekend.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Flashbacks and Flashforwards in the Era of World War II

I finished reading Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five earlier this week, and thought I should share some of my thoughts on it with you guys. It's a fun little read, and it goes pretty fast. So sit tight and we'll get through this thing in a jiffy.

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Second Bittersweet Mess

Hi, and welcome to another Friday night. The stories tonight aren't quite as action-packed as they were last week, but I do have some good ones for you today. The recently published story I have to offer you is Maggie Clark's "The Bittersweet Here and Now". The story from an anthology is Stephen King's "The End of the Whole Mess", from Wastelands. And this week's classic is pretty awesome. It's "Second Variety" by none other than Philip K. Dick. So get yourselves cozy. You're all in for a treat.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

The War for Elderly Folks

Hey there folks. Looks like I just about forgot to post again. I know I'm supposed to be posting stuff on the weekends. Heck, I've been doing it nearly every single weekend since this year began. So why am I starting to forget to post stuff now? Anyways, here's a little catcher-upper on one of the latest books I've finished, John Scalzi's Old Man's War.

Friday, April 27, 2012

A Sjambak, a Maneuver, and a Couple of Drones

Oops. Almost forgot that it was Friday, and that would mean that you guys wouldn't be getting your weekly dosage of new (well, maybe not quite brand spanking new) stories from around the web. And this week, I have a good handful for you. Here's the line-up: "The Dying Drones" by Christian A. Larsen, "The Johnson Maneuver" by Ian Douglas, and "Sjambak" by Jack Vance. So go and grab a freshly popped bag of popcorn and a tasty beverage of your choosing. It's time to sit back and enjoy the stories.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Long Lasting War

Ah man, it looks like I just missed the deadline for this post by just a few short moments. That's ok. I'm still getting it in, so I feel good. Anyways, less of me rambling on... for more of me rambling on? Haha, well, whatever. Enjoy!

Earlier this week, I finished reading Joe Haldeman's The Forever War. And like I said last week, it's pretty good. The novel starts off more or less like the science fiction edition of a dissertation on the Vietnam War. In fact, Haldeman is a veteran of that war and drew extensively from many of his experiences while serving in the military. The second half of the novel deals more or less with the disconnect that the main character, William Mandella, felt towards home, or more pointedly, the changing society. Many veterans may have felt, and may still feel, how Mandella does in the book when they initially returned home from a long stint on the battlegrounds.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

The Last "Last Airbender" Post

Are these getting boring to the rest of you? I think this will be the last Avatar: The Last Airbender post that I make. This time, I want to focus on the Avatar, Aang. He grew up with the air nomads, but like the beginning of each episode says, he got frozen in ice and his people were killed. Aang is the last of his kind. When Sokka and Katara find him, he's just an average pre-teen, enjoying the moment and having fun.

One of the best aspects of the entire show is watching Aang grow from that impulsive child into a young adult who carries the weight of the world. He doesn't do it overnight, and there are even some digressions here and there. However, with the help of his friends, he is able to move past that, and ends up reuniting the world and brings it to peace.

One Last Thing
Don't know if you know about this yet, but there is now a new avatar in town. Her name is Korra and her story has just started airing on Nickelodeon. There's a new episode on tonight. I watched a couple of these over at Nick's website, and if you'd like to catch up, you can probably do the same. I don't know if I like Korra as much as I did Aang, but maybe over time she'll start to grow on me. We'll only be able to tell with time.

Again? Really?

Last night as I was publishing the Friday stories, I noticed that I forgot to post my typical Saturday spiel last week. Sorry to disappoint you. To make up for that, I'll try to leave a couple of tidbits on here throughout the day today. This one does not count. Keep your eyes open, and maybe you'll get lucky.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Rust, Gold, and a Door to Infinity

Well, hello to all of you joining me today! It's another Friday and that means it's short story time. This week I revisited some places that I haven't visited for a while and even started jumping into some anthologies that I've been meaning to get around to. From the short story deliverers to your inbox, Daily Science Fiction, you have a link to "Rust" by Steven Saus. Matthew Sturges' "Cleansed and Set in Gold" is a superhero tale from the anthology Masked, which is edited by Lou Anders. Last, but not least, our blast from the past is Edmond Hamilton's "The Door into Infinity." These stories are a little bit longer than usual, but they are just as good, if not better than the stories I have dropped off before. So, if you find that you have a little bit of time this weekend, see if you can give a couple of them a try.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A Nomad, a Not-So-Quite Perfect Score, and a Race of Warriors

Would you look at that? Its only been a few hours, and I'm already back. Anyways, enough of the shenanigans. Let's get straight down to it. I have three stories for you this week, much like I have been doing in the previous few months. By now you should know how I like to roll. Two newer stories and one as a blast from the past. "Nomad" by Karin Lowachee and "Ten with a Flag" by Joseph Paul Haines are this week's recent stories, and Robert Sheckley's "Warrior Race" comes to us from just over half a century ago. So, with no further ado, please read on and learn more about these stories.

Starting to Lose Track

It looks like I'm starting to lose track of when I should be posting up here. I totally forgot about last Saturday, and then I spaced out on posting those stories for last night? I think I will have to do something really big to make up for this. I've been playing around with some ideas for a couple of short stories. Maybe in the next couple of weeks, I'll post one or two of them for all to see, you know, along with the other stuff that i've been trying to do.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Scattering Tests and Lotteries

Hey, it's Friday again! And i've got a couple of stories for you. So instead of going on and on like I normally do, I think I'll just let you jump right in.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Last Avatar: Katara and Sokka

Continuing with the Avatar: The Last Airbender thing that I have going on, this week I will focus on the two members in Aang's gang who hail from the Water Tribe. Those two are the siblings Katara and Sokka.

Katara is one of the only two surviving water-benders from the South Pole, the other being the puppet master who resides in the Fire Nation. She's portrayed as a youth who is more mature than her age lets on. And with her motherly attributes, Katara often holds the group together when things get tough. The only problem that I have with her is that she was a very static character. Her personality remained more or less the same as the series went on. However, I guess there wasn't much of another direction in which she could have gone.

Sokka, on the other hand, I view more as a dynamic character. Yes, he's often portrayed as the series' comic relief, but he managed to grow up from imagining himself as being a fierce warrior in the beginning of the series into a great leader in the ultimate time of crisis. Sokka even helped to lay down plans for the invasion of the Fire Nation. And though not a water-bender, he has to rely on more conventional ways of defending himself, which he often does with his boomerang and some kind of sword, be it a machete or an awesome space sword.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Paws, Beauty, and a Tomb

Well, I'm trying to make up for what I missed out on last week. Here are another three stories. Instead of introducing them, I think I'll just let you jump right into them.

My Bad

It would seem that I let myself become a little absent-minded last week and completely forgot to publish any posts Friday or Saturday. I plan on making that up this week with the two that I should have left last week plus the two for this week. So, for the next four days, starting tonight, look for posts from me. I need someone besides myself to hold me accountable.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Last Airbender: Prince Zuko

Last week I said that I would talk more about Avatar: The Last Airbender, and I intend to stand by my word. I did get around to finishing off the series earlier this week, so now I have some words to offer up about it. However, instead of laying everything out right now, perhaps I will give one character at a time. I have a busy schedule, and this way I have something to write up each week without having to read/watch so much.

Prince Zuko, the son of the Fire Lord, is probably my favorite character. The inner conflict that he wrestles with intrigues me. In the beginning of the series, he is so caught up with regaining his honor and impressing his father that he doesn't even see the destruction and mayhem that he causes. However, by the middle of the second season, he starts to see that he is making a mess, and by the beginning of the third begins to hold himself accountable and prepares himself to clean up after himself. In my book, Prince Zuko is the real hero for the complete turnaround he makes. I didn't see it as much in any of the other characters than I did in him.

Eyes, Takes, and Scientists

Hey all! I know, it's not Friday today, but I missed posting this yesterday. I still want to keep the goal of posting twice a week, but now I'm wrestling with this new schedule and I'm losing track of which day is which. I plan on getting on top of that soon and figuring out ways of getting around my schedule and finding the little areas in there where I have some free/downtime and getting in more reading and writing. Everything is just a little hectic now, but I know I will find a way.

Now for this week's stories. The first story, Jonas David's "Those Eyes," comes to us from Ray Gun Revival. The other more recent story is Alex Shvartsman's "The Take" from Daily Science Fiction. The classic story comes to us from the beginning of the Great Depression. It's Desmond Winter Hall's "A Scientist Rises." They are all fun stories and pretty quick reads. I don't think that there is any reason why you shouldn't read any of these.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Avatar: The Last Airbender (Pt. 1)

Hey all. Looks like I might have to start posting this one earlier in the day. I don't exactly have too much time after getting home to write this up and post it to the blog.

Anyways, I've been watching quite a bit of Avatar: The Last Airbender lately. This is my second time going through the entire show, and third time for many of the episodes. I'm so glad that my nerdy friends got me into this back in college. Thank you, nerdy friends! I'm sure you all know who you are.

Today I just finished the first season and started watching the second season. By next week, I'm planning on finishing it up with the entire show. However, if I will in fact stick with that plan has yet to be determined.

I don't know why, but my favorite character in Avatar is not any of the protagonists. No, my favorite has got to be Prince Zuko, son of the Fire Lord. In the beginning, he sort of has this defiant personality, but as the show progresses, we, the viewers, begin to see what has happened to him that he acts in that manner. And also, near the middle of season one and onwards into season two and definitely in season three, we start to see a new Zuko. One who is not bent on capturing the Avatar, but rather on restoring balance to the world.

Actually, since I will be finishing up with the show next week, why not come back here and check out what I have to say about it then?

Friday, March 16, 2012

Guns, Alarms, and Embraces

Welcome back! If you're here for another set of short stories, than you're in luck. I have the (now habitual) three stories. And again, you know the drill: two of them are newer and one is old. The two new stories are S. L. Gilbow's "Alarms" and Nick Tramdack's "Cold Embrace." The older is out of the genre(s) I've been looking into which is probably a really good thing. That story is "Gun Crazy" by MacKinlay Kantor. So, with no further ado, I offer you those stories.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

I've Been Slacking a Little Lately

Hey all. I guess I don't have a whole lot to report back to you for this last week. Instead, I sort of have an announcement for you, the readers.

If you have come here regularly, you may have noticed that I've been kind of slacking off these last couple of weeks in terms of reading (and even this week in terms of watching movies). That is because I've been transitioning from one schedule to another, and I haven't had a lot of time in between to do all that I have wanted to do. And it will probably take another couple of weeks to get fully settled into this new schedule.

However, like I have said before, I will try my hardest to keep my promises. I mean, this is the second post for the week, after all. I've kept my goals thus far, or so it would seem. Now all I need to do is catch up on some more of that reading and I will be doing just fine. Well, that and some writing (which I really have been slacking on). Anyways, I should have something for next week as well, so be sure to come back for a quick visit.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Postmen, Spies, and Chinese Medicine

Greetings again. I hope all of you have had a nice time since the last we met. I have had quite a busy week and haven't had much time to do the things I want to do. However, who really does?

Anyways, it's Friday, and that means I have another three stories for you. Like it has been lately, two of the stories that I have for you this week are newer while the other is quite aged. The newer stories are Ken Liu's "The Five Elements of the Heart Mind" and Margaret Ronald's "Sunlight Society." The older story this week is Robert Silverberg's "Postmark Ganymede."

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Hunters, Dragons, and Pride

Hey, I'm back for today although I nearly forgot all about the promise I made yesterday. But don't fret. Here I am, and I have some fun stories for you today. All of the stories I have to offer you now were published in Ray Gun Revival in the last month or so. Those stories are Evan Dicken's What Price for Pride?, Tim Sevenhuysen's We Dragons, and Mark Bilsborough's Hunter. Be sure to check them out. All of them are pretty short stories and rather fun and interesting.

What Price for Pride? by Evan Dicken

What happens in the future after we have met alien races? Well, there is no doubt that we will probably fight with them. However, some may have better technology than us and not be as merciful as we may be. This story begins with a supreme chancellor requesting help from one of the most ancient alien races they have encountered in battle against another race. However, nothing he presents seems to impress the representative. He ends up battling with a question poised to him by a friend: is the human race really all that exceptional? Are we really that grand in the scheme of things?

I don't plan on giving away the answer here. Dicken offers an interesting insight. Be sure to read it and ponder over the question yourself for a little while.

We Dragons by Tim Sevenhuysen

We haven't done this yet, but I have a feeling that it will inevitably happen in our future. You're probably wondering what I'm talking about. What is it then? Exploring new worlds. Yes, we've sent probes to Mars, but it just isn't really exploring in my book until you've actually sent someone there. In this story, two men have set out to explore a new world with oxygen levels just under that of Earth. They end up finding sentient life. However, they somehow anger the planet's inhabitants and have to flee for their lives.

Again, I don't want to ruin the whole premise for you, so I'll try to leave this a little vague so you are forced to go and read this story.

Hunter by Mark Bilsborough

Our last story here feels kind of like a noir classic, starring a morally ambiguous protagonist who, along with his armed to the teeth partner, chase down a drug lord. There isn't too much else to say about this one. It was a pretty fun read over all though. Go and check it out.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Let 'Em Breathe the Hollow Space Inside the Cult of Egil

Hello all of you again! It's another Friday, and that means that I have another three stories for you. I know I originally only thought I would be doing two a week, but it looks like three has now become the norm. It's also become a habit. And one I can live with for that.

Just a little heads up for tomorrow. I know that I've been talking a lot about movies lately and kind of slacking on the reading I was trying to hold myself to, but tomorrow I want to get back to literature. I haven't been able to finish a whole book this week (been kind of busy lately), however, I will try to throw in a couple more short stories, and I'll make them fun-loving, gun-toting, adventure-seeking weekend stories that will make you want to turn off the TV, pop up a bag of popcorn, and take a rest in the laziest chair in your house. Well, maybe they won't be amazing to those standards, though they will be fun, so be sure to come back sometime and check it out.

Anyways, returning to the point of this post, the stories are "And the Hollow Space Inside" by Mari Ness, "Harry and Marlowe and the Talisman of the Cult of Egil" by Carrie Vaugn, and "Let 'Em Breathe Space" by Lester Del Rey.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

A Couple More Movies Watched

Okay, I know I said that I wanted to catch up on some of my reading this week, however, I've been a little busy. However, I did have enough time to watch Casino and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Both are pretty good movies, and, again, I am surprised that I have never seen them. Perhaps it's better that I'm watching now when I can better pick up on some of the nuances in them.

Come back again next week. I'll try to have finished a book for you by then. I won't make any promises though. It's going to be a busy week, so my reading list might end up on the back burner for a little while. Don't worry though. I'll get some more for you.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Some Ibsen Plays

Alright, well, can you believe it? It's already Friday. That means I should have three short stories for you. I don't. Instead, I have something a little different to offer you this week. How about a couple of plays by Henrik Ibsen? I'm sure that had ought to work just as well. You may have heard of some of Ibsen's work already. His two most famous works are "A Doll's House" and "Peer Gynt." However, these are not the plays that I want to talk about tonight. Instead, I would rather focus on three other plays by Ibsen. Those are "Ghosts," "Hedda Gabler," and "John Gabriel Borkman."

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Catching Up On Some Old Movies This Week

I've been slacking off on some of the reading I should be doing instead. But that's okay. In the meantime, I've been catching up with some classic crime movies. So far, I've watched Dirty Harry, Scarface, and The Godfather (I'm actually viewing The Godfather as I type this up).

Now, what I don't understand is how I've never gotten around to watching any of these before. I'm currently in my mid-twenties, and have only lately started to view these. Better later than never I suppose you could say, right?

I have some other movies lined up for later, but I want to get back to checking some of these books off my reading list. I'll be back next week with a book to tell you all about again. And be sure to come back for some links to a couple of short stories on Friday. I'll try to have some fun ones lined up again for you.

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Call of the Angry Oubliette

Can you believe I've been doing this for over a month already? I really can't. but that it's still going on shows me that I can stick to something if my mind is set on it. Anyways, I have some fun stories for you this week.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Wikinomics: The Business Model of the Future

Not so long ago, I finished reading Wikinomics by Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams. It's not at all a fiction book, but it takes a hard look at the direction many companies are going and where they will go in the future. The collaboration that comes from wikis and the open source community is changing the way business is run.

Tapscott and Williams offer four key principles that are needed in the future of business if it is to continue down the same route. They are being open, peering, sharing, and acting globally.
  • Being open can mean a lot. It can mean being transparent and honest with your employees and clients. It could also mean being open source, or letting others use your "blueprints" (in a sense). Be inviting: open up the doors and let outsiders in. Don't close off your organization. Sometimes it's better to let in others in order to think outside of the box.
  • Peering is all about horizontal organization. Tapscott and Williams see this as one of the largest changes to come in the future. Businesses are already becoming less hierarchal and working more laterally with other organizations.
  • Sharing is a big one. There's that old saying: The more you give, the more you get. And this is true in the Information Age. The open source community is the golden standard.
  • Acting globally means crossing borders, not only company borders, but also country. Working in a local area is great, but many times there are better offers elsewhere.
Along with this, they also show some companies who have lead by example. IBM, Boeing, Lego, and Second Life are just a few of the businesses mentioned in the book.

They have a new book out called MacroWikinomics. I haven't read it, but I have it sitting on my bookshelf. One of these days I'll get to it.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Kirks, Knives, and War

It looks like it's already Friday again, and as usual, I'm a little late in getting this posted. However, it's getting posted and that's better than nothing, right?  This week's stories include War 3.01 by Keith Brook, All the Young Kirks and Their Good Intentions by Helena Bell, and Edge of the Knife by H. Beam Piper. I've even got links for all of them. They're all very good, so be sure to take some time and enjoy them over the weekend.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Finally Finished with A Dance With Dragons

Earlier this week, I finished reading George R. R. Martin's A Dance with Dragons. This is another of those books that I started a while ago and have been reading off and on until recently when I just wanted to hurry up and finish it so I could move on to some other books. Not that it was bad or anything. It's an awesome book to be truthful. Th only problem is that it isn't quite suitable as a quick read. But that didn't stop me.

This book is the fifth in the series and is partly split up with the previous book, A Feast for Crows. Events in A Dance with Dragons mainly take place in the north (on the wall and elsewhere) and in the east (mainly surrounding Meereen and those choosing to venture there). There are some other places but not quite that many.

And Martin has risen the stakes even higher in this book. He's killed off some characters that we wish were still alive. He's kept some alive just to tantalize us (or that's what I like to think anyways). But most of all, he's bringing his story to it's big climax. And that I just can't wait for.

Some of the things he's done with the characters in this story are just superb. I love what he's done with one of the characters who he's brought back from the dead (well, not so much brought back as the character never really died, but we were lead to think it did in the previous book). And Cersei finally gets what she's been deserving. Go and pick up a copy the book to find out what happens.

Friday, February 3, 2012

How Many Miles to the Death and Rebirth of the Wub?

Beyond Lies the Wub by Philip K. Dick -- Planet Stories
I haven't read a lot by Philip K. Dick (or PKD, as many of his fans call him), but I aim to read a lot more, especially after having read this story. This short tale really has it all. Well, by all I mean it has the ill tempered captain, the nervous crew who question to an extent what their captain says, and just a pinch of the otherworldly. The story starts out with the ship taking on some rations from an unspecified port. Dick mentions a few of the odd animals that the characters see, and the wub is among them. The wub looks a lot like a pig, and this makes the crew very happy. Now they have some food that can last them for a few months. But the wub starts to talk. He doesn't want to get eaten. However, the captain insists. I'll leave it there. It's not a long story, but it is worth the read.

The Death and Rebirth of Anne Bonny by Nancy Fulda -- Daily Science Fiction
There isn't really too much to say about this story. This tale is about how a girl loses her imagination and how it one day comes back to her. It's even shorter than Beyond Lies the Wub, so be sure to check it out. You don't want to miss it.

How Many Miles to Babylon by Megan Arkenberg -- Lightspeed Magazine
Darkness has descended on the Earth in this story, and now the main characters must survive through the creatures of the night. As the story alludes, they are on their way to Babylon, perhaps even by candlelight, as the old tune goes. They wonder if there are any other survivors. Perhaps there are. But they try to follow any signs they get. Check it out. It's a little darker than the other two, but it still has a kick of optimism to it.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Finished With Anthem Now

Earlier this week, I finished reading Anthem by Ayn Rand. It isn't quite as exciting as Ender's Game. However, I have been reading a lot of exciting, fast-paced books lately, so it was kind of nice to pick up Anthem and slow the pace down a little bit.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Schrödinger's Parting Weapon? No. Just Three Short Stories

Hello dear readers! It's Friday again, so you know what that means: another bunch of stories. All of these stories you can find online, so just click on the titles if you're interested in reading them and you'll be redirected to that story.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ender's Game: The Last Quarter

Wow, I sort of got distracted to day and nearly forgot all about this. And I promised to post this today, and here's to hoping that it gets up in time.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Reading Ender's Game

Well, I said I wanted to post at least twice a week, and if you noticed, I nearly missed the second post this week. But I didn't miss it. Here it is. It's a little late because I was hoping to finish the book before writing about it. However, I don't think anyone would mind if I talked about it before I finished it, and then gave an update when finished.

Now, since you probably read this post's title, you will know already that I'm reading Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. Actually, I only started reading it a couple of days ago, and already I'm three quarters of the way through the book, with less than fifty pages to go.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Toasters, Plugs, and Equations

It's Friday again, and you should know what that means. It's time to mull over a couple of short stories. Here are three that I have read in the last few weeks. Two of them have been published recently, and the the other one is a classic.

The Brave Little Toaster by Cory Doctorow -- Technology Review Science Fiction
(The written version of this story is only available in MIT's TRSF. If you would like to purchase it, click the link to Technology Review Science Fiction. However, an audio version read by Doctorow can be found on one of his podcasts, and can be listened to by clicking on the story title.)
In this story, Doctorow imagines how smart house technology could work in the future someday. All of the gadgets, and nearly everything else people will purchase anymore, will have chips in them and will be able to communicate with each other. The story begins with the main character buying a soda. However, it starts malfunctioning, so he tries to get rid of it. But none of the technology in his house can dispose it. So we are left with a question: what is he supposed to do with it? He puts it in the fridge, but the fridge refuses to hold it. He tries to put it in the oven, but the oven thinks it's dangerous. I forgot to mention this, but the story reads a lot like a Dr. Seuss tale, which also makes it all the more fun to read. Anyways, he tries everything, but nothing seems to work. Then he remembers his grandfather's old toaster. It's stupid, but perhaps it is the brightest piece of machinery in his whole house. It does what he tells it to do. He puts the soda can in there, and it ends up overheating. The main character gets arrested in the end, yet he still accomplished his goal.

Character Is What You Are by Michael R. Fletcher -- Daily Science Fiction
Fletcher set his story in the near future, and intellectual property is now one of the most protected things around. The main character and all of his fellow coworkers wear memory plugs at work so that they cannot take any of the company's secrets home with them. So, while wearing the plug, they can recall everything, however, when they take it out, everything associated with the plug goes as well. The strange thing that happens in this story is that while not plugged, the main character meets a woman and starts dating her. I guess that isn't so strange, so let me tell you the strange part: his best friend has been having an affair with that woman while they were plugged. But once they leave the office, they don't remember it. So the main character discusses everything with his friend, and once they put on the plugs, the friend becomes irate and starts to hate him. It's actually a very good story and it got me thinking about more stuff like that.

The Cold Equations by Tom Godwin -- Astounding Magazine
All of us face difficult decisions from time to time. And, put simply, that is exactly what Tom Godwin explored in this short story published nearly sixty years ago now. His main character, by duty of law, must kill a stowaway on his tiny ship, otherwise entry into the planet won't work. It is on his shoulders to do this. Kill the stowaway or kill everyone on the ship. The situation only gets muddier when he discovers who the illegal passenger is. It's a teenage girl on her way to see her brother, or so she thinks. I don't want to go further into detail on this story because it is well worth the read.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Doctors, Soldiers, and Cowboys. Oh My!

Like I promised not only yesterday, but also last week, here is the long awaited first post on a couple of short stories. Some you may have heard of already, while others may be new to you. I hope you can check out the ones you haven't heard of yet, and if you feel like being nostalgic, go ahead and drift back to the past with some of the older stories.

Today there will be three stories: Kurt Vonnegut's 2 B R 0 2 B, A Militant Peace by David Klecha and Tobias Buckell, and Cowboys of Carnostus by Timothy Miller. Vonnegut's story, of course, is the classic while the other two are more modern, being published in the last couple of months. If you click on the titles in the headings down below, you will be redirected to pages where you can find these stories to read for yourself.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Brave New... Frankenstein?

My New Year's Resolution was to publish two posts a week, and I plan on keeping that resolution. So here's this week's first. Not quite the short story post I promised last week. I should have that one up tomorrow, so be sure to come back and keep an eye out for it.

This week I am proud to say that I have finished reading Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, both of which I had been reading off and on over the last year. There's always something to distract you, and the stuff that you had in mind to do somehow gets stuck on the back-burner, sitting, forgotten for long periods of time.

Now, I know what you're thinking. "So what? You read Frankenstein and Brave New World. Who hasn't?" Well, I think the answer is a lot of people. Some might have to read it in high school, but I never had to. Unfortunately it was never on our curriculum. However, now that I have more time to myself, I have decided to jump into the classics and see what it is that I've been missing all that time. So let's stop yapping about it and jump in already

Friday, January 6, 2012

Spending a Year Delving into Short Stories

Back around Christmas, I stated that one of my New Year's resolutions was to leave at least two posts each week. I need one of them to be constant, something that is just normal and I can easily remember to post each week, and the other can be random and fun.

For the constant post, I have decided to leave some snippets and ideas roused up by some of the short stories I've been reading recently and will continue to read. There's a lot of them out there, which means there is a lot of catching up to do. I've been trying to read a good balance between newer stories (some of them the latest, most of them within the last year) and older works (from the old pulps). Some of them are really entertaining, others mess with your mind, and many are perfect petri dishes for sparks of inspiration. All we need to do is get out our microscopes and examine them a little bit.

And examine them is exactly what I have been trying to do lately, more or less, however, I am coming to believe that finding a public space to discuss some of these ideas may be more beneficial, not only for me but for you, the reader. Let's see if we can bounce some of the ideas back and forth amongst ourselves instead of in our own minds. It's good to reflect on your thoughts, but you don't want to dwell in your own head too long. That's when people start to go crazy. Well, sometimes anyways.

Just be sure to come back next week and check out what stories I've been reading. I'll try to have one recent story, one story from the past, and perhaps one wild card which can be either. Also, in case you may want to read the stories yourself, I'll leave links to wherever I found them.

Now, go and enjoy the beginning of the weekend.