Category Archives: Weekend Links

State of the Blog and Weekend Links: March 18, 2018

I never did get around to writing up last week’s weekend links, though I did save the actual links to share this week. Working at 5:30 am on Sundays is really making it difficult for me to get these posts written, and I’m starting to think I ought to move them to Saturdays going forward (no doubt to find myself scheduled on Saturdays as soon as I settle into a new routine, because that’s how retail jobs work). In any case, the day job is still a major impediment to reading, writing, cooking, cleaning, and anything else fun that I might want to be spending my time doing. Booo.

That said, I’m hoping to have a more reasonable work schedule in another week or two, and I have some ideas for addressing my creative block and reorganizing my time to be more productive in the near future. Encouragingly, I think (fingers crossed) that I’m done being actually physically ill for a while, having recovered from the nasty cold I had the last two weeks, and that always bodes well for productivity.

If you’re looking for something to read in March, as always has you covered, with comprehensive lists of this month’s new releases:

Virginia Bergen has won this year’s Tiptree Award, but there’s also a fantastic long list that’s been published for all of our edification.

A.C. Wise shares some non-binary authors to read in March.

If you want something to look forward to later in the year, be sure to check out the Book Smugglers’ announcement of their summer 2018 short fiction series: Awakenings.

If you want to support excellent short fiction, make sure you check out the Kickstarter for the next two years of The Dark Magazine:

Paolo Bacigalupi wrote about his Favorite Bit of The Tangled Lands, the new book he co-authored with Tobias S. Buckell.

Kelly Robson shares her Favorite Bit of her new novella, Gods, Monsters, and the Lucky Peach.

P. Djeli Clark’s upcoming novella, The Black God’s Drum, is one of the books I’m most looking forward to this year, and it has a (gorgeous) cover.

Margaret Atwood’s Angel Catbird is now also an audio play.

Lady Business celebrated mothers in SFF.

There’s a proper trailer for season 3 of The Expanse:

Ada Palmer wrote about Treating the Divine in Science Fiction.

nerds of a feather’s Horror 101 series continued with a look at enclosed versus exposed horror.

Mythcreants opined on why the term “Mary Sue” should be retired.

The Fandomentals covered Redemption Arcs of many kinds.

The Wertzone took a look at some of the dogs of science fiction and fantasy.

Speaking of dogs:

State of the Blog and Weekend Links: March 4, 2018

So, last week there wasn’t much going on in terms of links OR interesting updates on my life, and I was absolutely worn out by the time Sunday rolled around, so I decided to just take a break from weekend links. I’d love to say that doing so let me accomplish a bunch of other stuff, but that’s not actually the case. I just went to bed really early, to be honest. The truth is, I am still struggling, heavily, with just how much of my time is now taken up by the day job, and it turns out that I SUCK at adapting to a new routine.

There’s no particular bright side here; I’m just still worn out, constantly, and even just reading is exhausting. I think things are still getting better, re: energy levels and so on, but I’m still resentful about having to go to bed so early in the evenings (I turn into a pumpkin at about 9:30 these days) and how much the early bedtime cuts into what has, historically, been productive time for me. I’ve made some minor changes to my availability that should help in the coming weeks, but that’s still like two weeks away. In the meantime, my goal for this week is to carve out at least an hour each day for dedicated writing time (I’ll be setting timers and everything to make sure I stay on task); I’m hoping that this will help me finish some of the many things I have started working on recently.

After years of being increasingly apathetic about Doctor Who, I have to admit I’m getting hyped for the new season with a new showrunner and a new Doctor:

Sad news: Pornokitsch is closing up shop at the end of March.

This year’s Nebula Awards finalists were announced last week.

Last week, Myke Cole shared the Big Idea of his new novella, The Armored Saint.

This week, Tobias Buckell talked about the Big Idea of The Tangled Lands, his collaboration with Paolo Bacigalupi.

There’s a new interview with Fonda Lee over at Fantasy Faction.

Spencer Ellsworth popped in at Skiffy and Fanty with “That Thing You Love Doesn’t Always Love You Back.”

Lightspeed has an interview with Carmen Maria Machado.

This chat between Jeff VanderMeer and Alton Brown is interesting.

Weird Al and Lin Manuel Miranda are friends, and that makes me indescribably happy.

Speaking of indescribably happy, “The Hamilton Polka” dropped this week:

I preordered Catherynne M. Valente’s Space Opera this week, but if you’re still not sure if it’s a book for you, you can read the first chapter of it right now.’s Short History of South Asian Speculative Fiction has a Part II.

Emily Asher-Perrin says that all robot love stories are conversations about consent.

Mari Ness covers “Bearskin.”

As soon as I can find lamb shoulder at a reasonable price, I’ll be trying this delicious-sounding recipe for Wakandan Jeweled Vegetable Pilau with Berbere Braised Lamb.

The Expanse returns on April 11!

State of the Blog and Weekend Links: February 18, 2018

Not much change, unfortunately, on the finding-a-new-job-life-writing balance front this week, but my energy levels continue to improve (more or less, anyway, since I had a little cold mid-week that didn’t do my productivity any favors). I do have about eight blog posts halfway written, but half-written isn’t completely done, obviously. Still, it puts me in the way of being likely to finish at least a couple of things this week if I can manage my time a bit better than I have been (and avoid catching any more nasty germs from the day job).

I haven’t liked most of what I’ve been reading this week, but video media has been better than books for me while I’ve been sick and stuff. I’ve been working my way through the new Queer Eye on Netflix. It’s kind and funny and generally just delightful, and I never would have thought I’d have so many feelings about it. I also made it out to see Black Panther yesterday morning, and I have thoughts but all I’m going to say right now is BELIEVE THE HYPE. It’s every bit as good as 97% of critics and approximately all of Twitter say it is. I highly recommend putting it in your eyeballs as soon as possible.

Worldweaver Press revealed the table of contents for a new solarpunk anthology, Glass and Gardens: Solarpunk Summers. Bonus! If you sign up for their newsletter, you’ll get updates on when the book will be available AND a 40% off coupon to use in the Worldweaver Press online store.

My friend Renay (who you may know from the Hugo Award-winning blog Lady Business and from the excellent Fangirl Happy Hour podcast) is going to a badass camp for learning progressive political activism skills, but she needs a little help getting there. This lady does so much rad stuff already, and I cannot wait to see what she’ll accomplish with a few new tricks up her sleeve.

John Kessel wrote about his Favorite Bit of his new Jane Austen/Frankenstein mash-up novel, Pride and Prometheus.

At Breaking the Glass Slipper, Jasmine Gower answered five questions about her new novel, Moonshine.

At LitHub, Sofia Samatar talked about Kafka, binge-writing and the search for monsters.

The results of Uncanny Magazine’s 2017 Favorite Fiction Reader Poll are in.

Skiffy and Fanty introduced a new podcast covering Speculative Fiction in Translation.

At, Mari Ness covered the fairy tales of Henriette Julie de Murat.

Also at, part two in a series of posts about women SF writers of the 1970s. Part one here.

State of the Blog and Weekend Links: February 11, 2018

Once again, I’ve overestimated the amount of time and energy I would have for blogging. However, this time it’s not a matter of being exhausted from the day job; I’ve actually started getting used to the schedule and the early mornings, and my energy level has been pretty high. Instead, I just had a plain busy week, much of it taken up with getting my kid to and from final rehearsals for her first ever high school musical (which was Curtains, and it was very good). It’s been a lot, but now it’s over, which is a relief.

I’m happy to be feeling more energetic–I’ve even been cooking more again, which is excellent, as I’ve been thoroughly tired of frozen pizzas and things I can microwave for dinner–but I still feel like I’m struggling a little with adjusting to this new normal. I’m often at my most productive in mid-to-late evenings (think around 9:00 pm til midnight or so), so I’m losing a lot of ordinarily fruitful writing time any day that I have to go to bed early in order to be up at 4:30-5:00 am. I’m certain that things will get sorted, but in the meantime I’m just feeling a bit off, in addition to just being very frustrated at what still feels like a major disruption to my regular schedule and working process. It’s gonna happen, though. Hopefully sooner rather than later. has all the new releases you should be looking forward to in February:

Asimov’s has made several Locus Award-nominated stories free-to-read online.

It’s time to vote in Clarkesworld’s Readers’ Poll (or just read the stories that have made the finalist list).

Lady Business has some great recs if you are nominating and voting for the Hugo Awards this year. (Full disclosure: Includes me, which is still never not a surreal thing to see.)

I just got my ARC of Flotsam by R.J. Theodore the other day and haven’t dug into it just yet, but I am pretty hyped for it. It had me at “steampunk first contact” and I am wild about that fabulous Julie Dillon cover art.

The Illustrated Page has an interview with Alex Wells.

At Minor Literatures, J. Moufawad-Paul writes about Benjanun Sriduangkaew’s Winterglass and Necropolitics.

Sue Burke wrote about the Big Idea in her debut novel, Semiosis.

Burke also shared her Favorite Bit of Semiosis. And popped over to the Tor/Forge blog to share some more thoughts on plants, sentient and otherwise.

Brooke Bolander shared five things she learned while writing The Only Harmless Great Thing.

Jasmine Gower’s Moonshine came out this week, and she wrote about her Big Idea over at Whatever.

Myke Cole was on Skiffy and Fanty to talk about his upcoming book from, The Armored Saint.

S.L. Huang’s Zero Sum Game has a cover!

The Kickstarter is live for the hardcover edition of Sunspot Jungle, a two-volume anthology featuring over 100 speculative fiction writers from around the world.

At The Millions, a look at Carrie Fisher’s The Princess Diarist one year later.

At LitHub, some thoughts on the commercialization of dystopian fiction. I’m not sure I agree, but it’s something to think about.

Speculative Chic has a roundtable tribute to Ursula K. LeGuin, while four writers remember LeGuin and talk about what LeGuin meant to them over at LitHub.

io9 covered the history of supernatural pregnancies.

There’s finally a proper trailer for season two of Jessica Jones:

There’s also a trailer for Solo: A Star Wars Story, which I’m not sure I care about at all. It’s fine, I guess, though I’m very confused by those wine glasses with the huge silver things around the stems. Whose awful idea was that?

am interested, however, in 365 Days of Star Wars Women.

Because we are living in the worst possible timeline, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are going to write and produce some Star Wars movies.

The second half of Uncanny Magazine #20 is available online now. Must-read pieces include:

There’s a new issue of Apex Magazine out as well, #105. I’m currently digging “A Witch’s Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of Portal Fantasies” by Alix E. Harrow. There’s also an interview with the author.

New at Lightspeed this week: “Four Point Affective Calibration” by Bogi Takács (plus author spotlight).

Finally, I am in love with this “Judith and Holofernes” by Giorgio Vasari, which I’ve somehow managed to never see before. Those back muscles are gorgeous, and I adore the way Judith fills the whole frame. Amazing.

State of the Blog and Weekend Links: February 4, 2018

Well, the second week at the new job has turned out to be no more productive than the first one was, but I think things are getting better at last. I’ve been able to at least do a bit more reading this week–I finally finished Blood Binds the Pack, zoomed through Saga Vol. 8 and Kim & Kim Vol. 2: Love is a Battlefield, and I’m currently almost two-thirds of the way through Semiosis by Sue Burke. The good news of the week is that my partner has gotten a job offer that will let me cut back to part-time hours at my job, which should put me in a position to start achieving more of my goals for the blog in the coming months.

This coming week, I’ve got a light work schedule, but I’ve also got a lot of running around to do as it’s the final week or rehearsals and performances for my daughter’s first high school musical, so I’m not going to make any promises about what I’ll be up to here at SF Bluestocking, but it ought to be something. I’ve got several book reviews in the works, and with nominations opening up for this year’s Hugo Awards I’ll also be working hard to finally finish some belated Best of 2018 stuff. Still. I’m trying to be kind to myself by not putting too much pressure on myself to write ALL the things in a single week. We’ll see.

Nerds of a Feather has posted their long list recommendations for the Hugo Awards, and I will never stop being stoked about finding my name on there not once, but twice:

At The Millions, “The Utopias of Ursula K. LeGuin.”

Book Riot lists over 75 books Ursula K. LeGuin recommended.

Brooke Bolander was on Cooking the Books.

Skiffy & Fanty wrapped up their Month of Joy.

K.M. Alexander wrote about problematic faves.

Maria Dahvana Headley’s Beowulf-in-the-suburbs novel, The Mere Wife, has a cover.

So does State Tectonics, the third and last volume of Malka Older’s Centenal Cycle.

Mimi Mondal kicked off a blog series on the Short History of Asian Speculative Fiction for

At Lady Business, Ira has a great take on Jason from The Good Place.

Strange Horizons has a Trans/Nonbinary Special Issue available now.

There’s a new Yoon Ha Lee story at Beneath Ceaseless Skies: “The Starship and the Temple Cat.”

I loved Tobias S. Buckell’s “Zen and the Art of Starship Maintenance” when I read it last year in Cosmic Powers: The Saga Anthology of Far-Away Galaxies, and I cannot recommend it enough now.

Also in Lightspeed this week, Cassandra Khaw’s “The Quiet Like a Homecoming”–also with an author spotlight.

State of the Blog and Weekend Links: January 28, 2018

Well, I seriously overestimated my ability to accomplish anything in the first week of this new job. Waking up at 4 am and spending my days on my feet has really taken its toll on me so that I’ve barely had the energy to shower and feed myself, much less write anything. I haven’t even been reading much, to be honest, because I’ve just been too exhausted to concentrate. All that said, after a relatively restful Saturday off and with just a short shift this afternoon, I’ve been relatively productive today, and I’m hopeful that this coming week will find me settling into my new schedule and (likely slowly) getting back on track with things here at the blog.

My mood this week wasn’t helped by the news on Tuesday that Ursula K. LeGuin has passed away.

Read Ursula K. LeGuin on “Spare Time” at Brain Pickings.

Chuck Wendig has collected a bunch of Ursula K. LeGuin’s advice on writing.

Meanwhile, Literary Hub lists Ursula K. LeGuin’s best life advice.

This week saw the release of Brooke Bolander’s first novella, The Only Harmless Great Thing, from You can read her Big Idea over at Whatever.

Brooke Bolander was also interviewed by Alasdair Stuart for the Barnes & Noble Sci-fi and Fantasy Blog.

There’s also coverage at of a great discussion between Bolander, Maria Dahvana Headley and Amal El-Mohtar, in which they talk writing, history and The Only Harmless Great Thing.

The other must-read roundtable of the week is at Fireside Fiction, where Layla Al-Bedawi, Millie Ho, and Maya Kanwal sat down with Julia Rios to discuss Immigrant Experiences in Fiction and In Real Life.

The Book Smugglers revealed the cover of a new anthology, The Underwater Ballroom Society edited by Stephanie Burgis and Tiffany Trent. If you sign up to receive updates about the book (which is due out on April 30), you could win an e-ARC of it.

Mari Ness takes a look at the story of Snow-White and Rose-Red.

Skiffy and Fanty’s Month of Joy has continued to be a pleasant read.

There’s an interview with Fonda Lee in Lighspeed Magazine. Also, have I mentioned lately that you owe it to yourself to read Lee’s most recent book, Jade City? Because you definitely do.

Also in Lightspeed, new fiction by Sarah Pinsker, “The Court Magician.” And an Author Spotlight.

Apex Magazine’s Story of the Year for 2017 is “Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience” by Rebecca Roanhorse.

Also at Apex, my favorite story from the most recent issue, “Origin Story” by T. Kingfisher, is free to read now.

I am getting really hyped for Annihilation. This featurette showing more of the “shimmer” phenomenon is fab:

Still, the movie I am most hyped for so far this year is Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle in Time adaptation. This new trailer has a bunch of new footage from the film:


State of the Blog and Weekend Links: January 21, 2018

Well, I haven’t been very productive, writing-wise, this week, but I have been busy. I did do some training for the new day job, which I’m starting for real tomorrow (at the ungodly hour of 5:15 am, but I’m sure I’ll adjust in a week or two). However, much of my time this week has been spent reading short fiction. I’ve read three magazines (Uncanny #20, Fiyah #5, and Apex #104) cover to cover, and I’ve caught up on selections from LightspeedLuna Station QuarterlyClarkesworldPodcastle and Fireside as well, which pretty much wraps up all of my short fiction reading until sometime in February. I also read the novellas Binti: The Night Masquerade and The Only Harmless Great Thing, of which I am hoping to have reviews finished this coming week. Spoiler alert: they were both excellent.

Also this coming week, I’ll be working on reading through some first week of February releases; I just started Alex Wells’ Blood Binds the Pack, the sequel to last year’s Hunger Makes the Wolf, and I should also have time to get through Sue Burke’s debut novel about intelligent alien plants, Semiosis, and Jasmine Gower’s 1920’s influenced Moonshine. My plan is to have reviews of those written and published in the first week of February as part of my more general goal of writing about what I read and posting book reviews promptly in 2018. It’s still early, but I’m feeling good about it so far.

If, like me, you’re always on the lookout for something new to read, be sure to check out this list of 25 Sci-fi and Fantasy Debuts to Watch Out for in 2018.

As annoyed as I am that we have to wait for the Ellie Sattler Pop! figure, I definitely need this Target exclusive Ian Malcolm one:

I am sad to report that The Shannara Chronicles has been cancelled at the Paramount Network. I genuinely liked the show and found it a pleasant and entertaining YA-friendly alternative to the grimdark fare that has been dominating the fantasy genre in recent years.

At Shadow and Act, C.J. Obasi talked about adapting Nnedi Okorafor’s “Hello, Moto” into the short film, Hello, Rain.

Elsa Sjunneson-Henry’s essay, “I Belong Where the People Are: Disability and The Shape of Water,” is required reading.

Chloe N. Clark’s Horror 101 series continues with a look at pod people.

The newest entry in Mari Ness’s series on fairy tales covers Thumbelina.

There’s a teaser trail for HBO’s Fahrenheit 451:

Millie Ho’s “Hehua” at Fireside Fiction is an early favorite short story of 2018.

And speaking Fireside, they will soon be producing a quarterly print edition of the magazine!

I highly recommend buying the current issue (and, frankly, every issue) of FIYAH, but one of my favorite things in the issue is the reprinted P. Djeli Clark essay on George Schuyler. You can still read the original essay, “Black Empire: George Schuyler, Black Radicalism and Dieselpunk,” at Beyond Victoriana.

Coincidentally, there’s also an essay this week at the New York Review of Books about George Schuyler’s ahead-of-his-time Afrofuturism.

Skiffy and Fanty’s Month of Joy continues.

In this month’s Apex Magazine:

The first half of content from Uncanny Magazine #20 was released a couple weeks ago, but I only just got around to reading the magazine this week. Unfortunately, my favorite bits of this issue aren’t in the first half available online, but there are still some great pieces:

I’m absolutely besotted with “The Glow in the Dark Girls” by Senaa Ahmad (podcast here) over at Strange Horizons.

At Podcastle, be sure to check out LaShawn M. Wanak’s “No Wrong Answers.”

Clarkesworld has a new novelette by Tobias S. Buckell, “A World to Die For.”

Also at Clarkesworld, a great interview with Sue Burke about her upcoming debut novel, Semiosis, out from Tor on February 6.