Today is the 150th birthday of Elizabeth Jane Seaman, née Cochran -- best known by her pen name Nellie Bly
. She is perhaps most famous for her re-creation of Jules Verne's epic Around the World in 80 Days
, but this real-life Phileas Fogg did it in a record-breaking 72 days, 6 hours, and 11 minutes, and wrote a book
about her adventure. She was a pioneering investigative journalist, brave enough to get herself committed to an insane asylum to expose its practices, which resulted in the book Ten Days in a Mad-House
. As she wrote, "I was too impatient to work at the usual duties assigned women on newspapers." [more inside]
Whether taking all mankind close to the edge
with his keyboard contributions
to every punk's favorite prog-rock band Yes
, or going it solo
(in fully sequined gown) with all Six Wives of Henry VIII
all the way to the center of the earth
, or perhaps with figure skating Knights of the Round Table
, or composing the score for Ken Russell's Liztomania
in it), or doing definitive session work for the likes of David Bowie
, Black Sabbath
, or candidly singing the praises
... [more inside]
Gorgeous new covers
for Around the World in 80 Days, Journey to the Center of the Earth, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and From the Earth to the Moon by design student Jim Tierney.
"In Wells, God writes the human narrative, in Moore's version, it is humanity that ghostwrites its own story and credits it to God. The decision left to humanity is whether it will script its own history consciously, or allow the narrative to be shaped secretly by leaders and figures of authority..."
(alternate, longer explanation
) of Alan Moore
. Warning: long. [more inside]
was a Czech animator probably best known for his movies Journey to the Beginning of Time
and The Fabulous World of Jules Verne
. He used stop-motion animation, cartoons, puppetry, colorization, and live action to create surreal and otherworldly films of amazing beauty. Sadly (for some), there's not a lot on the internet
in English about the man. [more inside]
The Smithsonian's Jules Verne Centennial
site has a collection of a large number of high quality scans of original, engraved illustrations
from Verne's works. From the fantastic (interior of space vehicle
, flying ship
) and mundane (two dogs
, a nice meal
, elephant trying to break free from a hot-air balloon
). And don't forget to check out the portrait of Jules Verne and his many technological prophecies
. For information about the publishing history of Jules Verne read this scholarly article by Terry Harpold
about illustrations of Jules Verne stories, focusing on Le Superbe Orénoque
. It also includes a wealth of illustrations. Finally, as a bonus, here's a picture
of the National Air and Space Museum's scale model of the spacecraft Verne came up with for his De la Terre à la Lune
A Wicked Deception (youtube).
A fun look at (multi) round-trip machine translation. Sadly, it is a simple fattening of Verbindungsyoutube. Of course, humans, as Jules Verne might tell you, can have problems with translations too
. [more inside]
I'm officially jealous of the people who get to work in this office workspace custom designed to look like Captain Nemo's Nautilus
, from 20,000 Leagues. Via
is a French sculpture artist whose work feels like Jules Verne as realized by Tim Burton; the sculptures all share cartoonish steampunk vibe that's really appealing. Sadly, the site is 100% Flash, so no linking to specific favorites, but at the very least the navigation remains fairly straightforward.
The Jules Verne Collecting Resource.
If you're a Verne fan or a book collector at all, this site is an absolute treasure. There are pictures of almost every single edition of his works
, as well as everything even slightly Verne-related, including: movie posters
, playing cards
, cards for stereoscopes
, postcards he sent
, board games
, Jules Hetzel's excellent covers
for his work (more here,
and this one
is amazing), the man himself
, and god knows what else - pretty much everything.
If it's not here, it's somewhere else
, like the extraordinary maps
which adorned some editions, or the virtual library
with links to all of his works, the many, many incredible illustrations
therein, and even one scanned manuscript
(in French, obviously). Hope this makes somebody's day as much as it made mine.
is the many decades long dream project of writer/illustrator Larry Blamire. Essentially the story of three soldiers set in a Victorian era war that features giant Jules Verneseque steam-powered mechrobots, the story has kicked around in Blamire's imagination
since the 1970s. In an attempt to get the story made into a movie, he's put up a site with concept sketches
, full color art
& even faux memorabilia
from the ficticious wars.
Mythmaker of the Machine Age.
In the statue erected above his grave in Amiens, in Picardy, Jules Verne
, who died exactly 100 years ago, resembles God. He is, after all, the second-most-translated author on earth
, after Agatha Christie. To celebrate the anniversary
, there's a Verne exhibition at the Maritime Museum in Paris
, one of a series of events from Paris to the western city of Nantes
, where Verne was born on Feb. 8, 1828, to the northern town of Amiens, where he died on March 24, 1905
. His many fans, some of them quite famous
, will be treated to exhibits, concerts, films and shows in Verne's honor. “Underground City
”, a lost classic written by Verne and never before published unabridged in English, emerges this month
in not one but two new unique editions.
100 years later, questions remain about his life
: Why did he have two homes in Amiens? Why did he burn all his private papers? Why was he shot in the foot by his nephew, Gaston, in 1886? Gaston was locked in an asylum for 54 years after his attack on L'Oncle Jules. Was Gaston, in fact, Verne's natural son? More inside.
From the Earth to the Moon
by Jules Verne: A capital idea. Why did we not fasten a thread to our projectile, and we could have exchanged telegrams with the earth?
. Bad idea, said Jules. Great idea
, says NASA.
Airplanes, movies, guided missiles, submarines, the electric chair, air conditioning , the fax machine - in 1870
" Alvin Toffler, John Naisbitt, Faith Popcorn: all of them famous prognosticators. Yet each comes off a piker when compared to the true master of industrial clairvoyance, Jules Verne."