Odds and Ends

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Boreas, Apr 24, 2015.

  1. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Feel free to post anything of interest (SFnal related or not): articles, news, interviews, humour and any other curios.

    I'll start off with this provocatively titled article about the cheeky and friendly rivalry between two masters of the genre: Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov.

    The Decades-Long Flame War Between Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov

    asimovclarke.jpg
     
  2. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Very interesting. Projecting reality in slightly science fictional trappings. 'Facing' up to your own mortality as these two have done can be a bit of a shock.

     
  3. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    This is unexpectedly epic!

     
  4. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    This is a hilarious little video! Vader gets top marks for being dauntlessly uncompromising all the way through to the very end! I'd say he won that little exchange, despite...

     
  5. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

  6. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    This is really very impressive! Benedict Cumberbatch voice acting as Smaug. Have not seen The Hobbit films. Should probably give them a go.

     
    TomTB likes this.
  7. TomTB

    TomTB Administrator Staff Member

    That's brilliant! It's more than just voice acting. If audiobook narrators were this good I may be tempted to try a few more!
     
  8. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Same. I've tried a few audiobooks, but just haven't been able to get into them.

    Batmetal! Disturbing yet funny.

     
  9. Alicia

    Alicia Well-Known Member

    There are some good ones, especially if they were trained actors before they started narrating books. I listened to a sample by Kevin Marchant just yesterday and was well impressed.
     
  10. TomTB

    TomTB Administrator Staff Member

    I've listened to 3 now. One I enjoyed (Tigana), the other 2 I had to stop midway through as I couldn't bare listening to the narrators any longer.
     
  11. Alicia

    Alicia Well-Known Member

    I think a lot of authors make the mistake of reading their own stories. They need a trained voice.
     
  12. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Can't believe it! They even did a 'Hitler reacts to..." video and it's spot on and hilarious to boot!

     
    Alicia likes this.
  13. Alicia

    Alicia Well-Known Member

    Funny, yet sad. Awards really don't mean anything after this.
     
  14. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    In my opinion, the Hugo Awards haven't meant much since Harry Potter won. And they really haven't been a measure of excellence in the last decade+. Of diversity, yes.
     
  15. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    How to kiss a woman!

     
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  16. TomTB

    TomTB Administrator Staff Member

    upload_2015-9-4_22-56-52.png True!
     
    Boreas likes this.
  17. Alicia

    Alicia Well-Known Member

    Quite honestly, I've never taken much of an interest in them at all. Whenever I see a book award list and actually look into the books on it, I find a lot of stuff I either have no interest in or have already rejected. I think it's like the Academy Awards, inside industry people blowing their own horn or in the case of book awards, publishers promoting what they want to sell.
     
  18. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Very true, it has increasingly become like that. I think there was a time when many nominees and, sometimes, even winners were chosen based on quality (and the impact they had on the genre) and by a very small group of hardcore, well-read genre fans at that, but I think that era seems to have peaked a while back (with hindsight, it seems to have already been on a downward swing during the 90s). When I was first reading a lot of science fiction, I was using the Hugos and Nebulas as a guide and was rarely disappointed. As my tastes have 'matured' and I've zoned in on my likes/dislikes, the weight I used to accord to award nominees/winners has waned substantially. As you say, winning an award has more to do with a potential increase in sales more than anything else - not just in the home countries (usually the U.S. or the U.K.) but award winners are also the ones to be more widely translated into other languages and, for newer writers especially, that is a distinct advantage.

    I discover new authors/books mostly based on personal recommendations and through some good articles and spotlights that pique my interest. However, I'll still take a quick look at the nominees to see if any unfamiliar authors on the list might interest me. Once in a while, Amazon points me to some winners as well.
     
  19. Alicia

    Alicia Well-Known Member

    That's the digital age for you. We get our recommendations where we can. A lot of good writersjust aren't bothering with big publishers anymore. The advantages are diminishing. Even bookstore shelf space isn't the benefit it once was with so many book sales happening online.
     
  20. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

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