- It’s good to see Katie Haegele not only investigating how sites like LibraryThing have value in cataloging obscure printed zines, but discovering how academic librarians are using LT to keep track of small collections. I’ve been resistant to LT because of the 200 book cap. But perhaps someone might be interested in establishing a universal database tracking all known titles that have ever been put out. John Labovitz is certainly doing this for e-zines. But not every print zine went online. So why not the print catalog equivalent?
- A single page of a love story written by Napoleon Bonaparte has been sold for $35,400. Assuming that there are about 400 words on this page, Napoleon now writes at a rate of $88.5/word. I suspect Ted Kennedy’s on the phone with his agent right now wondering why he couldn’t get a better word rate for his memoirs.
- Why don’t the Brits love science fiction?
- Now here’s a use of public tax money that I have no problem with. Apparently, US and Russian astronauts have had sex in space for, ahem, research purposes. “The issue of sex in space is a serious one,” says Pierre Kohler. I quite agree. Until some enterprising inventor figures out a way to control discharges in zero-G, only a creatively deranged mind would look upon the slapstick comedy possibilities. Why then do I have an idea for a movie called There’s Something About Density?
- Someone recently suggested to me in a conversation that nobody cares about Guy de Maupassant anymore, but it appears, thankfully, that some people do indeed care.
- It looks like Putin now wants to censor Russian culture. Didn’t he learn anything from glasnost? Should I have bothered to ask that last question?
- Did editors corrupt Kerouac and Carver?
- A slim but welcome profile on Donald E. Westlake. (via Booksurfer)
- Pricing problems for newsprint production.
- If Erin O’Brien is the Pynchon of hack feature writing, does anyone have a shot at being the Nabokov of hack feature writing?
- The obligatory book tours are dead article. (via Book Glutton)
[UPDATE: Snopes says there were no sex experiments by NASA.]
Excerpt from Napoleon Bonaparte’s manuscript:
“She breathlessly whispered, ‘I have always loved great men such as you. You are not at all short, like they say. Tall men are overrated. Everyone knows that short men are the greatest lovers. Short men command the fates of history…”
(Oh, just kidding.)
I also like to think of myself as the Lewinsky of Hack Presidential Blowjobs.
Thank you for your support.
Strangely enough, all the sci-fi I’ve read the past few years has been British…not only science fantasy like China Mieville and Christopher Priest’s The Prestige, but hard SF stuff too, like Ian M. Banks The Algebraist and the Alastair Reynolds Revelation Space series. (Plus, the Brits gave us Doctor Who and Blake’s 7, which is a decent track record in the televised space opera dept.)