Log in

No account? Create an account
Recent Entries Friends Archive Profile Tags Jeamland
Penguin tries to persuade men to read more by telling them the ladies like it. 78% of respondents think that people who read are likely to be much better in bed, apparently. Of course, SF still suffers from an image problem, and it's probably possible to take all these things a bit too far...

Perhaps not surprisingly, the book factor didn't show up in this recent poll about men in general. More surprising, probably, is the fact that half the women in the UK apparently think that the man should be the main breadwinner in the household. Not can be; should be. Mind you, the respondents also seem to think that Richard Branson is a suitable role-model.

Kim Stanley Robinson, author of the rather good climate-change/paradigm-shifty-thing novel Forty Signs of Rain (my review here), is not impressed with The Day After Tomorrow. And a bit gung-ho about the wonderfulness of American SF.

And speaking of SF, it's got a new definition. One of my colleagues was talking this lunchtime about the problems of filling in the reader survey of World Mission magazine as an atheist. "They also asked me what type of books I read. The options were 'catholic fiction', 'catholic non-fiction', or 'secular fiction'." No 'secular non-fiction', apparently.

A good interview with Jeff Vandermeer has one particularly wonderful quote about a book he's working on: "I think it will be one of the greatest adventure/spy stories ever told. Think Burroughs and Alasdair Gray collaborating with Nabokov and a code breaker from World War II." The mind, it boggles.

The secrets of the Cheese Man are revealed at last.

And last but not least, a question: is it wrong that parts of this make me laugh until I hurt myself?
Feh and meh to that poll.

Your cheese link is missing a h.
Feh and meh to that poll.

Which one?

Your cheese link is missing a h.

Now fixed. Ta.
(Deleted comment)
I think it's genius. I almost want a 'YOU DON'T KNOW!' icon, but some people might get the wrong impression... :-)

One of them funniest things evar.
With this weight-loss and wardrobe change, Saddam Hussein looks like someone's kindly-and-slightly-mad uncle. The sort one would lovably ignore during his rants. ;-)

(also as bad: he looks like a cabbie)

Who he looks exactly like, more than either of those ideas, is Captain Haddock

Bashibazooks! You're right! ;-)
He may be an evil dictator but you have to admire the fact that he's clearly not bothered. The suit and starvation did him a power of good, jabbing his finger at all and sundry, looking like he still runs tings.
And a bit gung-ho about the wonderfulness of American SF.

This bit was pretty ironic given he is the most European of the major American writers in terms of sensibility.
The rest of the world reads American science fiction – their own science fiction they feel is not trapping the heart of the beast

That's the most stupid remark I've ever heard from KSR. Hey Kim - we are doing just fine over here with the beast heart trap thing.
Yes, that was more-or-less my reaction, too. I mean, he's not really on the same wavelength as, say, the killer B's, is he?
Hmm, for someone who likes being on his own, you are doing a lot of research. You sure your first name is not Daniel, as in D. Niall? :-)
(And, yes, I know that feeble joke only works if one mispronounces your name).

I like living alone. Being alone is altogether less desireable. ;-)
Ta for the Vandermeer link. I've just bookmarked his Veniss set shorts on infinity plus for future reading.

Veniss Underground was great. I read all of the last part on the afternoon before your do, when i was in a terrible state and needed to hide in a book. Didn't cheer me up, but certainly took me somewhere you couldn't mistake for my life. I shall have a haunting image of a woman under a pile of legs, in fact the whole cathedral sequence there, lingering in the back of my head for a long time.
Didn't cheer me up, but certainly took me somewhere you couldn't mistake for my life.

Best review ever. :)

Glad you liked it. Now beg, borrow or force immortalradical to buy a copy of City of Saints and Madmen forthwith!

(I'm currently working my way through his short story collection, Secret Life. 'Tis also of the good.)
Good Bonking? Oh, it's Booking
Er, stumbled across this live journal and just wanted to say thanks for the kind comments about my work. And thanks for the support. I've got a nice foothold in the UK with Pan Macmillan right now, but the only way I'll hold onto to that if readers like you continue to buy the books.

And I'd like to second criticism of K.S. Robinson's comment. It's an odd comment to make, I think. Most of my influences, for example, are not American at all--mostly English/Scottish/Irish, actually. There is definitely a sensibility in European fiction that is different from its U.S. counterpart, and I can't quite put my finger on what it is, but whatever it is, I usually prefer it.

Jeff VanderMeer
The difference in European and American fiction is there, but something I can't even begin to get a handle on. Every time I think of a potentially defining characteristic, there's always an obvious and important example of a novel from the other side of the pond that does the same thing. I do wonder, though, exactly how much recent European SF KSR has actually read; not a lot, it seems to me, if he's sticking to that comment.

And you're more than welcome for the comments. You keep writin' 'em and I'll keep buyin' 'em...!