• Reading

    The Award Winners Reading Quest

    by It’s been a while since I talked about it, but I’m on a long-term quest to read all of the novel award winners of the major English-language speculative fiction awards. I started with the Hugos, the Nebulas, the Word Fantasy Awards, and the Auroras (Canadian, for those less familiar), and I began with that first Hugo winner back in 1953, The Demolished Man by Alfred Bester. Since I started the quest in 2016, these have made up about half of my fiction reading and I’m into the mid-1990s now. This year, I’ve added in the British SF Association Awards. When those start to get caught up to where I’m…

  • Reading

    Fantasy vs Science Fiction

    by I’m worried I’m losing my taste for Fantasy. There was a time when my fiction reading was a fairly even split between SF and Fantasy. ‘Fairly even’ as in SF probably edged out Fantasy, but it was likely on the order of 55-45. If I look at my reading notes from the last four or five years, the ratio is more like 80-20, and this year has pushed that further so that of the 51 fiction books I’ve read so far this year, only 7 of them qualify as fitting into the Fantasy genre. While I’m not sure it’s fair to talk about the World Fantasy Award winners in…

  • Reading,  Writing

    Genre Preferences

    by I don’t intend to argue (or even give) definitions in this post, but as I look at the world of fiction, there are 11 genres. Yes, if you include sub-genres and genre-mixings you can get that number an awful lot higher, but I’m just looking at the broad buckets here. And I’m going to express preferences. Remembering that your preferences are not mine, you should disagree as much as you like. Those preferences and favourites, both for reading and writing, will become apparent in the short comments that follow. I will say in advance that I have a strong preference for speculative genres and frequently only read in most…

  • Reading

    I’m Not Reading As Much As I Have Been

    by Reading has been part of my daily routine forever. Over breakfast, before bed, standing in line at the grocery store. And while I’ve gone through periods in my life where I wasn’t reading as much due to commitments and responsibilities and children’s activities, it’s never gone away. But I haven’t been reading much lately. At least, not fiction. At the beginning of the shutdown, and even before, my fiction reading had spiked. Between my last day of work and the 18th of May, I read 12 books and I’ve got several more in progress, all at least half-read, that I mostly haven’t touched in the last two weeks. It’s…

  • Philosophy

    It’s Easy To Be Angry

    by It’s easy to find things to be angry about. All you really have to do is look around with your eyes open. I more or less wear my politics on my sleeve and they very simply boil down to people over profit. That’s not as hard to reconcile as you think with the industry I work in, although sometimes it’s more difficult than I’d like it to be. But, people over profit is the primary thing. It’s much more important to me that people are taking care of and that people, generally speaking, put other people ahead of things. You might guess it’s very frustrating for me to live…

  • Reading

    2017 Reading Summary

    by But if 2017 was a weak writing year, it was a strong one for reading. Paper, electronic, audio, I consumed a lot of written words this year. Without going into a lot of detail, because there will be plenty when the 2017 Reading Journey file is done, my category break outs are mostly pretty favourable. Historical Award Winners: 17, and 4 DNFs Last Year’s Award Winners: 6, and 1 DNF Spec Fic Breadth: 7 Other Fiction: 40, and 2 DNFs Martial Arts: 4 Non Fiction: 16 Which I make a total of 90 books. Add to that several hundred pieces of short fiction (including almost a million words of…

  • Reading

    Where Did All My Reading Time Go?

    by One of my New Year’s resolutions this year is to become more well-read. I don’t just mean in a specific field, although I have a couple of those in mind. I mean more well-read in general. That resolution breaks down into goals that span several areas. Unlike a lot of the other goals I’ve set for my life as part of this year’s plan, or the current five-year plan, my reading goals for this year are something I feel like I’d like to talk about. Something that might actually be interesting to other people. Maybe. Genre Fiction Once upon a time, I thought I was well-read in Science Fiction…

  • Karate,  Reading

    What I’m Reading: Martial Arts After 40

    by I don’t really talk about it a lot on here, but it’s no secret I train in karate, and have been for about four and a half years now. It’s also not a secret that I’m in my forties, and while I trained for six months or so just before my son was born, I didn’t take up karate seriously until a little while after my 39th birthday. Four and a half years on, I’ve learned a lot and definitely ramped up my fitness level, but I’m not ready to start feeling my age yet, so I’ve been trying to expand my personal definitions of what I need to…

  • Reading

    What I’m Reading

    by So I signed myself up for the Goodreads reading challenge again this year, and increased my target to 50 books, theoretically almost one per week. I’ve finished nine books so far this year, and I’m nearly done a tenth. That makes me 5 books behind schedule at the moment, but it’s not because I’m not reading, it’s because of what I’m reading. You see, a while back (last year), I started doing an X-Men re-read. X-Men, as in the comic book. I used to collect comic books, and I was a huge X-men fan, accumulating most issues of all of the regular series of titles (although not all of…

  • Reading

    The Reading Backlog

    by So one of our family goals this year was to de-clutter and clean up the house. All I can say there is that the year’s not over yet and we’ve made some progress. But, in the process of things, I’ve been able to get a clear idea of how many books I have in the house. More importantly, how many books I have in the house that I haven’t read yet. It’s a scary number. You see, I used to work for a large book retailer. The last several years of that particular career were in a couple of different incarnations of an office environment, so there were a…