Tag Archive for 'the viewscreen'

catching up

Wow, I haven’t blogged here for more than a month.  Sorry about that. It’s not that I haven’t wanted to blog–a lot has been going on, and I have things to talk about (like Star Trek Into Darkness and Man of Steel, not to mention some recent controversies on the internet…). However, one of my struggles as a writer has been learning not to take on too much. I have a day job and a family and some semblance of a social life, and several other commitments on the side, like writing Star Trek reviews at The Viewscreen, and editing newsletters and magazines, and so on. I have to fit writing fiction in there somewhere, and for the last month or so, I made the decision to focus on that. The good news is, I just finished a major revision on a novel, so I consider my time away well spent. But now I have a ton of e-mails to catch up on and a backlog of things to blog about…

Since it’s been an egregiously long time since I blogged here, here’s a quick update on some very important and mostly wonderful things:

norton

Photo by Sam Morgan

  • Last month, Fair Coin received the 2012 Andre Norton Award for Outstanding Young Adult Science Fiction or Fantasy Book! I was completely stunned and honored, particularly since every one of the nominated books could just as easily have received it. It was an incredible experience just to be in San Jose, CA for the Nebula Award Weekend, which is where the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) organization gives out their awards, let alone take home the shiny award. (For photos from the weekend, visit Richard Man Photo, and click here for a list of all the Nebula award recipients and nominees.)
  • I am a finalist for the 2013 British Fantasy Award for Best Newcomer (aka the Sydney J. Bounds Award), for Fair Coin. Wow. Nominees were voted on by members of the British Fantasy Society and winners will be selected by a jury and announced at the World Fantasy Convention in November. I’m particularly surprised and pleased to get this recognition because my books have not yet been published in the UK!
  • Last month I visited my old high school in Yonkers, NY for career day. (Fun fact: Fair Coin is set in the fictional city of Summerside, which is basically Yonkers.) Many of the vendors there were in the medical profession, and I thought it might be weird for me as a former pre-med student there to be hanging out as a writer. But it was amazing to be back there and meet so many students and faculty who are excited about books and writing, and it was wonderful to reconnect with an old teacher of mine, Dr. Clarice Morris. Shout outs to some of the great teachers and teens I talked to: Joshua, Samantha, Melanie (pictured with me), Charisma, Shyana, Marco, Dean, and Josue. And thanks to Jim Riley, the school’s media specialist, who brought me there.
  • Oh yeah, I just turned 35. Not bad.

20130523_112615Some recent blog posts of mine elsewhere:

Finally, here are some recent, noteworthy reviews and interviews:

I’m sure I’m forgetting something, but that’s all I’ve got for now. Hopefully blogging will pick up a little more here now that I am not stuck in the revision cave!

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alternate wednesday: Star Trek (2009)

AltWed_Logo

I’m pretty excited about finally getting to see Star Trek Into Darkness tomorrow night. I’ve been dodging internet spoilers like it’s my job, and I’m one of the devout Star Trek fans who really digs J.J. Abrams’ take on the franchise. It doesn’t take a lot to please me: Give me time travel, alternate timelines, and Leonard Nimoy, and I’m a happy geek. (Props to Abrams and Fringe for also delivering on all three!)

I just re-watched the 2009 Abrams film, which (spoiler!) I did like a hell of a lot, and I’m happy to say I still enjoy it. In honor of the release of the new film, here’s my non-spoilery review of Star Trek from way back in 2009, which launched me on my Star Trek Re-Watches at Tor.com and The Viewscreen. In the comments, let me know what you think of the Abrams’ films, but no spoilers on Into Darkness until 10:00 p.m. EST tomorrow night, please.

Continue reading ‘alternate wednesday: Star Trek (2009)’

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links to the past

Apologies for the lack of my Alternate Wednesday posts of late; oddly enough, it’s a matter of not having enough time for them. I thought the biweekly schedule would be manageable, but with a novel to revise and multiple deadlines for various projects (including several other blogs I contribute to–see below), it has been the easiest thing to put aside. But I enjoy writing them, and I hope some of you enjoy reading them, so they will continue–but perhaps on a sporadic basis for the moment.

"Yesterday's Enterprise"That said, I’m double-dipping this week. It’s no surprise that many of my favorite episodes of Star Trek (in all its incarnations) involve time travel and/or alternate realities. So last week I was happy to cover one of the very best of these in the ongoing Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch at The Viewscreen: “Yesterday’s Enterprise“. Here’s an excerpt:

But I tell you, this episode is exciting, not least because it fills in some of the time between Kirk’s era and the TNG years, with the introduction of the Enterprise-C. (It hits some of the same buttons for me that “Babylon Squared” on Babylon 5 does, my favorite episode of the first season in which the Babylon 4 station reappears due to a temporal anomaly…) And I love this vessel, a beautiful melding of the best features of the Constitution-class and Galaxy-class designs. “Yesterday’s Enterprise” also has high stakes, gruesome deaths, and it looks and sounds more cinematic than anything on the show previously. I’m also a sucker for stories in which one ship or one person makes a huge impact for others–even in failure; we always root for the Enterprise to survive, but the idea that one crew’s sacrifice could still be a victory of sorts is gratifying.

Pop over there to see my episode recap and read reviews by me, Torie Atkinson, and our fine commenters.

I also had two other guest blog posts this week, if you haven’t had enough of me:

And finally, here’s a link to download a free PDF of Sybil’s Garage No. 7, which among many fantastic pieces includes one of my favorite short stories that I’ve written, “My Father’s Eyes”. It’s even kind of YA-ish, though with a slightly older main character, a photographer named Ambrose. And here’s the editor talking about the issue, Anne Frank, Justin Bieber, and the band Neutral Milk Hotel.

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Kirk out.

*crickets*

It’s been a little quiet around here… Too quiet, I know. But I’ve been hunting wabbits edits, revising my novel. So that’s coming along.

Happily, my blogging hiatus is nearly over, though; I have a slew of posts planned, and a wee bit of “free” time opening up soon, because (drum roll) the Star Trek Animated Series Re-Watch has just concluded! It’s been a hell of a ride*, and fortunately the series ended on a high note with “The Counter-Clock Incident.” You can read our reflections on the entire series here, and of course, check out all our reviews of the cartoon and the original series over at The Viewscreen.

“What’s next?” you might ask. I’ll pretend you did, anyway. Torie and I are planning to continue our Star Trek re-watch with the films, probably beginning in September. In the meantime, we’ll have a few open discussion threads running on the site and we’re hosting virtual viewing parties for the movies so we can share the delights and pain of the even and odd installments, respectively. So let us know if you’d like to join us for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan on Saturday, August 27 at 2 p.m.

It hasn’t been all work and no play, even if it often feels that way. I finally started The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time (on the Wii)–not much progress yet, but it’s fun–and have been working my way through Mad Men and Skins (UK) and various other shows whenever I can justify the downtime. I’ve also been reading great books, most recently The Demon’s Surrender by Sarah Rees Brennan, The Curse of the Wendigo by Rick Yancey and The Magicians by Lev Grossman (finally!).

So what have you been up to while I’ve been gone? Have any good television or book recommendations?

_____________

*That could really mean anything, right? Take it however you like.

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welcome to toontown

The brief hiatus at The Viewscreen is over, which means I’m as busy as ever: writing reviews, revising a novel, and juggling all sorts of miscellaneous tasks in addition to the day job. I have a small vacation coming up this weekend, and I really need it.

This time Torie and I are (re)watching Star Trek: The Animated Series. Though I went into this re-watch with some trepidation, so far I’ve been enjoying the show immensely. As with the original series, you have to overlook some flaws inherent to the budgetary constraints placed on the show, but these animated adventures often aspire to the same depth and quality of the live-action stories. Not many people have seen them and the series is rarely talked about, but they are very much an important part of the franchise’s long history.

This week we covered the first two episodes, “Beyond the Farthest Star” and “Yesteryear,” the latter which is D.C. Fontana’s quasi-sequel to the classic episodes “The City on the Edge of Forever” and “Journey to Babel.” I think they’re well worth your time, and fortunately you can now watch the entire series for free at CBS.com. Episodes are only 24 minutes long, so why not watch along with us and tell us what you think? You can also just read our lovingly-crafted recaps and commentary and share your two cents without having to watch a thing.

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