Discover Delight, Ingenuity and Joy with Stories for Chip: A Tribute to Samuel R. Delany!

Stories for Chip Book Cover

It’s only fitting that Stories for Chip, an anthology honoring professional polymath Samuel R. Delany would feature a ridiculous variety of stories. It’s also only fitting that they would be inventive, incisive, and filled with joy. Edited by Nisi Shawl and Bill Campbell, Stories for Chip includes fiction from every corner of fiction both “literary” and “genre,” as well academic essays on Delany’s place in SFF, and a few personal reminiscences from friends.

That variety in and of itself tells you something vital about Delany: over his career he has written science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, porn, historical essays, writing advice, and comics, and he’s inspired people in every one of those realms. In a basic way, his very presence in the community inspires because how many black gay intellectuals who also run respected undergrad creative writing programs are there in SFF?

In an interview about with SF ...

Ranking the Corpse Art of Hannibal!

Will Graham with all of his dogs

From the depths of my mourning for Hannibal’s cancellation, I wanted to think about the good times, and focus on some of the show’s best corpse sculpture.

See that picture up there where Will Graham is happily fixing a boat motor, surrounded by his loving puppies? That is the last happy picture you will see in this post. This post is literally made of (fictional) dead people. So proceed with caution. Also, there will be spoilers for the ENTIRE SERIES.

We’re starting with some ground rules since ranking posts can incite the disgruntled to such shocking rudeness, and I do hate rudeness. So a few things aren’t going to be included. The Dinner Party from “Oeuf” isn’t included here, cause it isn’t particularly artful – though it is notable for being the closest thing we’ve gotten to A Very Hannibal Christmas. Also, Abel Gideon’s Stabathon isn’t making the cut ...

Hannibal, Georgia Madchen, "Buffet Froid"
Hannibal Colombian Necktie "Rôti"
Hannibal Marissa Schurr "Potage"
Hannibal Shrike Murder "Apéritif"
Hannibal Cave Bear "Naka-Choko"
Hannibal Valentine "Primavera"
Hannibal Primavera Tableaux "Primavera"
Hannibal "Buffet Froid"
Hannibal “Mukōzuke”
Hannibal Bee Hive Man "Takiawase"
Hannibal Judge Davis "Hassun"
Hannibal Mothman "Secondo"
Hannibal Mushroom Garden  "Amuse-Bouche"
Angels in Hannibal episode "Coquilles"
Hannibal Human Cello "Fromage"
Hannibal Horse Birth in "Su-Zukana"
Hannibal Tree Man in "Futamono"
Hannibal Human Totem Pole "Trou Normand"
Hannibal, Human Eye in "Sakizuke"
Hugh Dancy on the Hannibal set for "Sakizuke"

You Beautiful Monster: The 20-Year Struggle to Make Clive Barker’s Nightbreed

Nightbreed Mirror

Clive Barker has had a bumpy film career. After writing scripts for Underworld and Rawhead Rex, and being underwhelmed with the results, he decided to try directing his stories himself. So he adapted his story “The Hellbound Heart,” and created the classic Hellraiser. Unfortunately, for the next movie he wanted to do a thoughtful, dark fantasy adaptation of his story “Cabal,” but his producers just really wanted a slasher movie.

In 1987’s Hellraiser, Clive Barker’s first film as a director, you can already see the writer-turned director pushing against the constraints of the horror genre. The first half of the film is textbook 1980s horror film: an evil bastard named Frank meddles in dark powers, dies at the hands of creatures called Cenobites, and then comes back from the dead even more evil than before. He coerces his brother’s wife, who also happens to be his ex, into ...

Nightbreed Shuna Sassi
Midian Unmade
Nightbreed Group

If Someone Asks You if You’re a God, Do You Say Yes?


It’s a perennial question among comics fans: flight or invisibility? This is a simple test to see where your values are. If you answer flight, you’re a free-spirited romantic. Invisibility? You’re a skeevy perv not fit for human society. Insist that those choices suck, and that you want something really cool like invincibility or teleportation? Then your friends will just yell at you.

The real point of the question is to force you to make a choice, and live with the consequences. A thousand years ago, I taught a comics class, and one of the first things I drilled into my kids’ hopeful noggins was, yes, you can have any power you want. Anything. BUT. That power, no matter how awesome, will come with a weakness. This was disturbing to them, because they thought they’d signed on for a fun class about superheroes, and here I was forcing them to ...

La Primavera by Botticelli
Botticelli, Birth of Love
Nike of Samothrace

Talking Villainy at BEA: The Big Bad Theory with Charlie Jane Anders!

Big Bad Theory at BookCon 2015

You might expect a late-Sunday BEA panel to be a sedate affair, but The Big Bad Theory was anything but! Charlie Jane Anders, author of All the Birds in the Sky, moderated a lively discussion on the tropes of villainy with authors Ilana C. Myer, Scott Westerfeld, David Wellington, and Michael Buckley. If you’re trying to write a villain, these panelists have some excellent advice for you! Anders kicked things off by asking the audience to give her their best “villainous mwahahaha” – and the room responded with a truly terrifying enthusiasm.

Anders began by asking the panelists to introduce themselves, and talk about their villains. David Wellington’s latest book is titled Positive, and his favorite villain is “a moving presence behind the scenes named Anubis. I’ve written 17 novels, but this one is my favorite, and this is the one you should buy.” Scott Westerfeld’s new ...

Should You Watch the Original Mad Max Trilogy?

Mad Max

The short answer is “Yes, of course, what the heck were you thinking not watching it?” But perhaps you need some convincing. Perhaps you missed Beyond Thunderdome each of the many times it was shown on a cable outlet, and are now leery of Tina Turner in a fright wig. Perhaps you think moviemakers couldn’t create a believable post-apocalyptic landscape in the (mostly) CGI-free days of the 1980s. Perhaps you just can’t with Mel Gibson. I understand. (Truly! Especially about that last one.) But I’m here to show you that the original Mad Max trilogy holds many wonders!

[Tina Turner’s hair is but one of them.]

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