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Loncon 3 gears up for Hugo Awards
August 17, 2014 | 11:20 am

Loncon 3, the 2014 incarnation of Worldcon and "the 72nd World Science Fiction Convention," held at ExCel in London's Docklands, is playing host this Sunday August 17th to the Hugo Awards, "the leading award for excellence in the field of science fiction and fantasy," in an event due to be streamed live to fans worldwide. According to information already released by Loncon 3, "participation in the Hugo Awards is now officially at an all-time high. Loncon 3 received 3,587 valid Hugo Award final ballots (3,571 online, 16 paper). The previous high was 2,100 final ballots cast by members of the...

GenCon is this weekend; are you coming?
August 11, 2014 | 5:56 pm

20140508_171116_HDRGenCon is coming up this weekend, at the Indianapolis Convention Center (that kind of flat building at right, visible between those two red towers) here in scenic Indianapolis. Are any of our readers planning on attending? It would be cool to have the chance to meet some of you! I’m highly excited about it; this is the first time I’ll be attending as a resident rather than an out-of-towner. I can bicycle home at the end of the day rather than having to drive a rental car down to my brother’s house. I’m probably going to be around Thursday and...

Edinburgh International Book Festival 2014 kicks off today
August 9, 2014 | 10:57 am

The Edinburgh International Book Festival begins its formal program for 2014 today with "over 900 internationally-renowned writers and thinkers from 47 countries around the world" and a theme of "Let’s Talk" which directly recalls the so-called National Conversation consultation exercise which led up to the historic referendum on Scottish independence due next month. And while the referendum and the issue of Scottish independence is not at all the only item on the program, it is coloring much of the content of this year’s Festival and giving it an historic flavor of its own. Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond and former UK Prime...

New York Public Library panel: ‘Amazon: threat or menace?’
July 2, 2014 | 11:33 am

Origin 712014 71734 PMWell, the New York Public Library panel discussion on Amazon was a big disappointment. I suppose I should have expected it, given how the panel was stacked with some of Amazon’s harshest critics and others from the old-guard publishing industry, but I had harbored some hope they might be willing to listen to an opposing viewpoint. Unfortunately, it was even worse than I’d feared. The 90-minute video is available at the livestream page if you want to watch the carnage. First of all, the meeting was clearly put together with an anti-Amazon agenda, as the selection of...

New York Public Library Amazon panel discussion takes place tonight
July 1, 2014 | 11:05 am

Just a friendly little reminder to block out 7 to 9 p.m. Eastern tonight to watch the panel discussion that the New York Public Library is hosting on Amazon’s business tactics, featuring James Patterson, Bob Kohn, and Passive Guy. It will be livestreamed, and promises to be rather entertaining. I’ll try to write up some thoughts about it afterward, or tomorrow....

New York Public Library to host panel discussion on Amazon with James Patterson, Bob Kohn, Passive Guy, and others
June 27, 2014 | 4:07 pm

Nate mentioned this New York Public Library panel discussion, “Amazon: Business As Usual?” a few days ago. It’s going to have a number of the loudest complainants about Amazon taking part, including James Patterson and Bob Kohn. I wondered what the point was, given that it seems the deck was largely stacked with publishing-industry types who have ample reason to dislike Amazon. That was before I learned that David Vandagriff, aka “Passive Guy” from The Passive Voice blog, will also be taking part. One of big publishing’s most outspoken critics, he is assured to have plenty to say at...

Macmillan exec asks what publishers can do for readers, but does she mean it?
June 18, 2014 | 4:46 am

Porter Anderson at FutureBook reports on a presentation given by Sara Lloyd, Pan Macmillan’s digital and communications director, at the “FutureBook Hack” conference. (TeleRead previously carried an open letter to Ms. Lloyd from Brian Ford of Lendle.) Lloyd was gung-ho about wanting publishing to move forward with digital and take things to the next level. She said things like “I think we haven’t done the great things yet and that’s what you guys are here for,” and “Ask what you can do for readers, not what you can do to solve the problems of publishers.” ...

Attend this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival and George R.R. Martin just might kill you
June 16, 2014 | 4:25 pm

Since being killed by George R.R. Martin is apparently the latest fad, I'm glad to be able to report that if you turn up for this year's Edinburgh International Book Festival, there is a slight but distinct possibility that he may kill you too. He might knock the mike over onto your head during a reading. Or his hired car might run you over. He might even trigger a fatal attack of GoTMania during his talk on "Creating brave new worlds." After all, you have a much greater chance of being killed by him if you go to the Festival...

LonCon Hugo Voter Packet now available for download to paid members
May 30, 2014 | 5:47 pm

Origin 5302014 52336 PM.bmpFor those who signed up for LonCon membership to get the Hugo Voting Packet containing free e-books (such as almost all of Wheel of Time), LonCon has made the packet available. Go to the Voter Packet page. You’ll need your LonCon membership number and PIN, which should be in an email in your inbox with the subject line “Loncon 3 PR3 and your Hugo PIN.” Once you’ve logged in, you’ll be presented with the options to download the category material shown at right. (And if you haven’t signed up yet, it’s only about $45 for a voting membership,...

Leeds Big Bookend brings northern rock for words yet again
May 24, 2014 | 12:23 pm

Dubbed "a rock festival for words," the Leeds Big Bookend 2014 festival, running June 7th and 8th this year, for the third year running, will be headlining with "An Audience with Alan Bennett" at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, in a chance to meet and hear probably Leeds's most famous literary son. Other events in the program range from Multi-Sensory Storytelling to the  Index on Censorship Magazine Big Debate on Censorship and Propaganda in Wartime. Already featured in TeleRead, the The Big Bookend "is a non profit making company limited by guarantee with charitable objectives. Any extra money generated from the Big...

Hugo voter e-book bundle to include only excerpts of Orbit Best Novel nominees
May 15, 2014 | 10:14 am

orbitWell, here’s some disappointing news. You know how, in recent years, the Hugo Voters Packet has included as many of the Hugo-nominated works as it was able to get out of its publishers? Including, this year, almost the entirety of the Wheel of Time series? (It’s lacking the prequel novel which isn’t directly connected to the storyline of the main series.) There’s a fly in the ointment this year, and it’s that, apart from Wheel of Time and Baen author Larry Correia’s book, all the nominees for Best Novel were published by Orbit, the UK publisher and subsidiary of...

Hugo voter e-book bundle to include entire Wheel of Time series
April 21, 2014 | 4:15 pm

hugo_wheel-of-timeThe Hugo nominations have been announced. One of the more interesting things to come out of the nominations this time around has been the inclusion of the entire Wheel of Time series for “Best Novel.” This is something of a first for the Hugos, and would probably be at least mildly controversial in other years. (This year, what with the Jonathan Ross thing and another more recent kerfuffle that I might discuss in another post, it seems to rate as relatively minor on the outrage scale.) But one side-effect of that nomination is to make Supporting Membership in this...