After watching the Smashing Pumpkins Steampunk song yesterday, I had to track down the original 1902 French movie that inspired the video segment. Based on the 1865 story From The Earth To The Moon by Jules Verne, it was cutting-edge film making, with never-before seen special effects and production values. You can download the book to read on your computer or portable device, or read it online. You can also listen to the story online or download it for your portable media player (or burn it to CD) thanks to the good folks at Librivox. They remade the movie in 1958, but the original is the best. You can download your own copy for your permanent collection or just watch it online at Archive.Org.
I gave links to the pages that give you this years Hugo Award nominee writings yesterday. Today, I thought I should point out a classic; read Cordwainer Smith at this link. If you don’t know who he is, these stories will introduce you, as will Frederik Pohl’s Introduction to a truly great man, who also wrote some of the best science fiction of his era. The new Stargate Universe trailer is now online, as broadcast during the Battlestar Galactica finale Friday. It looks like it could re-energize the franchise.
There are many good things to read online, or to download for reading offline, and Free SF has recently added a number of them, including works by Walter Jon Williams, James Patrick Kelly, and Felix Castor, to name a few. One of my favorite places to go are the online Ezines, like Flurb. Headed up by Rudy Ruker, Flurb concentrates on quality stories that for one reason or another would be very hard to get into a normal print magazine. Then there is Clarkesworld, currently with Herding Vegetable Sheep along with some other stories, at least one in audio format each month. Another good one is Raygun Revival, concentrating on golden-age space opera. Strange Horizons usually only has one story and one poem per edition, but it comes out once a week, so you still get a months worth of reading. There are many more, but that should get you started.
SF Signal has posted a huge list of things you can read online for free. It includes stories by Neil Ayres, Ben Bova, Marion Zimmer Bradley, Michael A. Burstein, Greg Egan, and that’s only the first few letters of the alphabet. In another entry they have links to the 3 Novelettes and 4 short stories posted on Asimov’s nominated for the Nebula Award this year, also free reading. In a third, an announcement about Will F Jenkins Day in Virginia, but they included links to several of Murray Leinster’s stories which are again (surprise) free to read online.
Major items from the Forry Ackerman collection and museum are going up for auction at Profiles In History, using the online site Live Auctioneers. If you don’t know who Forry was, read this immediately. What was in his collection? Things like a first edition print of Dracula signed by Bram Stoker and inscribed by Bela Lugosi. Or the ring Bela Lugosi wore in the movie Dracula. Or Fritz Lang’s monocle, which he wore when directing Metropolis and later gave to Forry. And a whole lot more… the auction takes place in April, so you have time to look over the items and make your selections. Thanks to Schock Till You Drop for the heads up on this one.