From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

Category Archive for ‘Non-Fiction’ rss

Non-Fiction

Comic Reviews: Space Opera 101: Jake Parker’s Missile Mouse

Depending on when you were born, you were introduced to the glories of space opera in different ways. I was born in 1976 and one of my first vivid movie-theater memories is watching Return of the Jedi with my cousin Billy and wishing he would just let me read the subtitles myself. I was an Ewok […]

Non-Fiction

The New Dead: Christopher Golden, Editor

The New Dead, edited by Christopher Golden, is an example of the “big tent” theory of zombie fiction. Instead of restricting the content to the classic Romero-esque shamblers, Golden threw the gates wide open and the result is a wildly diverse, inventive batch of stories that will please both hardcore zombie fanatics and more casual dabblers in the subgenre…a look at zombies that reaffirms the elements that allow them to maintain their grip on our imagination while showing how broad the possibilities for them are.

Non-Fiction

Mark Teppo: Of Men and Magick . . .

“Mark Teppo suffers from a mild case of bibliomania, which serves him well in his on-going pursuit of a writing career. He also owns a pink bunny suit. Fascinated with the mystical and the extra-ordinary, he channels this enthusiasm into fictional explorations of magic realism, urban fantasy, and surreal experimentation. Maybe, one day, he’ll write a space opera. With rabbits.” An interview with Teppo, by Jonathan Wood.

Non-Fiction

Author Spotlight: Nikki Alfar

What inspired your folk tale “Bearing Fruit”? This is actually from the notes I’ve written for my upcoming short story collection: I’m a folklore and fairy tale geek—not in any scholarly way or anything, but I’ve read lotsa shit from lotsa cultures, and it’s an abiding interest of mine. So one day, my friend Andrew […]

Non-Fiction

Curiouser and Curiouser: Alice on Film

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, first published as a children’s book in 1865, has had a particular appeal to moviemakers since they were first able to crank out the film. The story’s vivid images were perfect material for this new medium, and the early movie adaptations especially did an excellent job of preserving the vignette-y, illogical narrative. (It helped that the films were silent, and so the focus was on the special effects and not so much on killer dialogue.) Below, nine adaptations of Alice that are good, bad, or downright curious.

Non-Fiction

The Crazies: You’d be Crazy Not to See It

It’s a “chili mac” kind of thing, really. Half zombie movie, half psycho thriller, with a dash of family interest and a pinch of buddy flick, the dish turns out both new and familiar.

Non-Fiction

Book Review: Extraordinary Engines: The Definitive Steampunk Anthology, edited by Nick Gevers

It’s tough to compile a definitive anthology, especially when the volume contains only original fiction and lacks most of the genre’s iconic writers, but editor Nick Gevers tackles the challenge in Extraordinary Engines: The Definitive Steampunk Anthology. Overall, it is neither as definitive nor as strong as might be hoped, nor does it achieve “definitive” status. The anthology should, however, please many steampunk devotees, and win it some new fans.

Non-Fiction

Donna Jo Napoli: Playing to Win in The Wager

Donna Jo Napoli has seen more than sixty books in print. In her latest offering, The Wager (Henry Holt, April 2010), a well-bred Don Giovanni squanders away his wealth and is cast into the life of a beggar in the aftermath of a series of natural disasters. Until he meets a mysterious stranger who bets him a magic purse that he cannot go “three years, three months, three days” without washing or shaving or changing his clothes. Ms. Napoli describes her writer’s journey from the book’s conception through publication.

Non-Fiction

Author Spotlight: Scott William Carter and Ray Vukcevich

You often hear it said that when two people collaborate, a third person emerges. I think that is probably right. The assimilation process can be painful, but Scott made it easier with his endless patience. It took quite a long time.

Non-Fiction

Ten Fantasy Sidekicks Who Could Do Better

Fantasy movies often suffer from Hero Syndrome. Held hostage by the plot, the hero is trapped; their behavior becomes erratic, their moral code tedious, their dialogue overblown. Luckily for us, behind most heroes is a loyal and clever sidekick, delivering jokes and advice (and desperately updating their resume when they think no one’s looking). Below, […]