Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Emperor Pirk and May 1st

‘Aika on ohi’—Pirk standing in the Star Wreck vappu posterPirk, the Emperor of the working class and the most devastating of all great Finnish leaders, will start up the official May 1st (vappu) celebrations in Tampere next Saturday. Pirk is the friend of every worker—at least as long as the worker is cheap, hardworking and obedient. Spectators will be treated to an Imperial presentation, the official welcome by Emperor James B. Pirk, the hymn of the P-alliance and a thank you–speech from Energia production house and the Star Wreck crew. Official Emperor Pirk balloons will be given out.

If you happen to be in Tampere on April 30, go visit the stage of the old library house park at 4 PM to start the Vappu in an sfnal way.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Toni Jerrman Appointed Councillor of Comics

Sarjakuvaneuvokset + puupää 2006The Finnish Comics Society has awarded, among four others, Toni Jerrman, editor of Tähtivaeltaja, the title of sarjakuvaneuvos (“councillor of comics”). Says the award jury,
“Toni Jerrman has excellent taste and is willing to share his knowledge with others— —his comics articles are written with both fierce passion and solid professionalism— —comics have been part of Tähtivaeltaja for the 25 years of the publication. Jerrman has brought unknown but interesting comics to the attention of his readers, written about manga before the current enthusiasts were even born, and published a sizable amount of Finnish comics and illustrations.”

Congratulations!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Atorox Leaps to a New Century

I’ve grumbled about the things I think are broken with the Atorox prize at the moment, so it’s only fair to also give credit where credit is due. This year TSFS (the society giving out the award) has managed to get permissions from the writers and has put all the 27 short stories nominated for the award in elecronic format. They are available to everybody who is taking part in the voting. So it is now easier than ever to get all the stories missing from one’s own collection—not that I’ve ever felt it’s been particularly difficult before, but anyway. Well done!

Friday, April 07, 2006

New Usva Out, English Issue Coming

Young girl sitting by a broken window, looking out

Usva 1/2006 is out. This issue’s theme is fears, with contributions from Petri Laine, Natalia Laurila & others. Haven’t had a chance to look inside yet (as it just was published on the web site), but what a beautiful cover!

There will be a special issue, Usva International, published for Finncon, that will contain Finnish sf short stories translated in English.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

April Mob Talk

What do the following have in common?
  • H.P. Lovecraft (and Hellboy)
  • Keanu Reeves (and if he should ever be allowed to act again)
  • V for Vendetta (comic & movie)
  • Chris Claremont (his career highlights and lack thereof)
  • Stanislaw Lem (R.I.P.)
  • westerns in general (and Deadwood in specific)
Not that much, it would seem. But be that as it may, those were all among the things discussed at today’s mafia. The conversation was very interesting, but my impeccable discretion (and the amount of beer consumed) prevents me from reporting in more detail, so you just have to take my word for it.

Today’s special theme were this year’s Nebula-nominated short stories. I was rooting for Margo Lanagan’s Singing My Sister Down, but the others didn’t quite agree. The story reached the second place in our vote, behind My Mother, Dancing by Nancy Kress. I’m still standing by what I said, though: Singing My Sister Down is an excellent short story, and Black Juice is a book everybody should read. (Dammit, missed my bus stop while writing that. Oh, well…)

Topics in today’s mafia zine: Atorox, Black Juice, Serenity, V for Vendetta, Jeff VanderMeer & City of Saints and Madmen.

Bar Bremer was supposed to have a renewed menu. Not much difference, though (which is as well since the old menu was quite ok as it was). The course of the day seemed to be “chips and chicken” that spread through the crowd like wildfire. (Don’t read that one literally. Please.)

Next month’s theme (no, not the food—eat whatever you will) is Hugo, more specifically the Hugo nominees for best short story. Everyone’s welcome to come and discuss this year’s offerings on May 4. The nominees are:

Tähtivaeltaja Award to Lauren Beukes

The Helsinki Science Fiction Society has announced the winner of this year’s Tähtivaeltaja Award : the best science fiction book published i...