Are you an aspiring writer of genre fiction? Would you like to workshop your stuff before submitting it to magazines and publishers, but you don't happen to have a group of local friends that you can workshop with? Critters.org
is an online, highly automated fiction workshop. You submit your manuscript, it waits in a queue until its time comes up, and then it gets sent out to all the active subscribers, some of whom will hopefully send you some helpful feedback! Make sure to critique at least one story every week, though, or you lose your privileges to post your own stories to the queue. [more inside]
posted by kavasa
on Aug 1, 2010 -
is an independent cartoon created by Winnipeg animator Myles Langlois, with contributions from Drue Langlois and Hollie Dzama. All 10 episodes are available on YouTube: [more inside]
posted by oulipian
on May 2, 2010 -
Good Show Sir
- a blog of the worst science fiction and fantasy book covers from the deepest depths of second hand bookstores around the world.
posted by Artw
on Mar 27, 2010 -
After being beaten into a brain-damaging coma by five men outside a bar, Mark Hogancamp built a 1/6th scale World War II-era town in his backyard. Mark populated the town he dubbed "Marwencol
" with dolls representing his friends and family and created life-like photographs detailing the town's many relationships and dramas. Playing in the town and photographing the action helped Mark to recover his hand-eye coordination and deal with the psychic wounds from the attack. [more inside]
posted by dobbs
on Mar 16, 2010 -
He invented or popularized
a startling array of the fundamental elements of film: the dissolve, the fade-in and fade-out, slow motion, fast motion, stop motion, double exposures and multiple exposures, miniatures, the in-camera matte, time-lapse photography, color film (albeit hand-painted), artificial film lighting, production sketches and storyboards, and the whole idea of narrative film.
By 1897, in a studio of his own design and construction – the first complete movie studio – his hand forged virtually everything on his screen. Norman McLaren writes, "He was not only his own producer, ideas man, script writer, but he was his own set-builder, scene painter, choreographer, deviser of mechanical contrivances, special effects man, costume designer, model maker, actor, multiple actor, editor and distributor." Also, his own cinematographer, and the inventor of cameras to suit his special conceptions. Not even auteur directors such as Charles Chaplin, Orson Welles, John Cassavetes, and Stanley Kubrick would personally author so many aspects of their films."
Inside: 57 films by Georges Méliès, the Grandfather of Visual Effects
. [more inside]
posted by Paragon
on Feb 3, 2010 -
Although it's commonplace nowadays to assume that J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings was the primary source of inspiration for Dave Arneson and Gary Gygax when they created the world's first tabletop roleplaying game, Dungeons & Dragons, a careful examination of the game suggests otherwise... James Maliszewski
on The Books That Founded D&D
. Some disagreement
posted by Artw
on Nov 24, 2009 -
There was no way to simply say, "I read a really bad description in this book last night." I had to scan it and share it for you to understand just how bad it truly, truly was. It is the sort of bad that causes pain and must be shared with other people so you can feel better.
, Part 2
. This really is prose so purple that it verges into the infra-red. Some NSFW descriptive naughtiness.
posted by fearfulsymmetry
on Apr 1, 2009 -
I do not want to spend too much time beating a dead war-horse, but your average D&D game consists of a group of white players acting out how their white characters encounter and destroy orcs and goblins, who are, as a race evil, uncivilized, and dark-skinned. To quote Steve Sumner’s essay again, “Unless played very carefully, Dungeons & Dragons could easily become a proxy race war, with your group filling the shoes of the noble white power crusaders seeking to extinguish any orc war bands or goblin villages they happened across.” I would argue with Sumner’s use of the phrase “could become,” and say that unless played very carefully, D&D usually becomes a proxy race war. Any adventurer knows that if you see an orc, you kill it. You don’t talk to it, you don’t ask what it’s doing there - you kill it, since it’s life is worth less than the treasure it carries and the experience points you’ll get from the kill. If filmed, your average D&D campaign would look something like Birth of a Nation set in Greyhawk.
- Race in Dungeons & Dragons
by Chris van Dyke, a powerpoint
talk given at Nerd Nite
. Via Ta-Nehisi Coates' blog where there's a smart discussion going on about the essay
posted by Kattullus
on Nov 19, 2008 -
before him Benjamin Rosenbaum
is making his debut short story collection, The Ant King And Other Stories
, available from his publishers, Small Beer
, as a free download
. More than this though, he is holding a competition
to find the best derivative work inspired by it. These include "translations, plays, movies, radio plays, audiobooks, flashmob happenings, horticultural installations, visual artworks, slash fanfic epics, robot operas, sequels, webcomics, ASCII art, text adventure games, roleplaying campaigns, knitting projects, handmade shoes, or anything else you feel like." [more inside]
posted by ninebelow
on Sep 19, 2008 -
Stephen King has described The Dark Tower as his "Jupiter."
The epic series, inspired in part by Robert Browning's poem, "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came"
, has spanned 22 years, 7 books and nearly 4000 pages. The first book in the series, The Gunslinger
, begins with a simple, memorable declaration, "The Man in Black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed." [more inside]
posted by kbanas
on Apr 18, 2008 -