Collated Contents of the Year’s Bests (2018 Stories, Links)

Welcome to the third annual linked collation of annuals or “year’s bests.” As the contents of the Afsharirad, BASFF, Clarke, Datlow, Guran, Horton, Shearman/Kelly, and Strahan science fiction, fantasy, and horror annuals are announced, they will be combined into one master list with links to the stories which are available online. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy some of them and that will help you decide which annual or annuals, if any, to purchase.

(There will often be information after the story’s place of publication. In the case of stories with multiple selections, the initials of the last names of the editors or editing team who selected it will be present. If a story has “Read,” “HM,” “Rec,” or “YB” after it, it indicates that I’ve read it and, if so, whether it got an honorable mention or a recommendation when I reviewed it, or was a recommendation which made my virtual Year’s Best Short Science Fiction and Fantasy #2 (2018 Stories). Stories in the last three categories are in bold font.)

You may also be interested in the previous posts in this series which cover 2017 stories and 2016 stories.

This 2018 edition is in remembrance of Gardner Dozois.

Latest change (see Changelog/Credits below for details): 2018-12-18.

One Annual

The Best Science Fiction & Fantasy of the Year: Volume Thirteen, Strahan, ed.


Changelog/Credits:

  • 2018-12-16: First version of this year’s collation posted after Jonathan Strahan announced the contents of The Best Science Fiction & Fantasy of the Year: Volume 13 the day before.
  • 2018-12-18: Removed the “Firelight” link which went to a teaser instead of the complete story. (Sorry about that.) Thanks to Roger Silverstein for pointing it out.
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Links (2018-12-12)

Science Fiction

  • Forthcoming: Fall 2019 | Library of America. This is of interest due to the two-volume set of American Science Fiction: Eight Classic Novels of the 1960s (and Harold Bloom having placed Le Guin in The American Canon). Of those eight novels, I have one in the Pile, have read six, and liked The High Crusade, This Immortal, and Nova, and loved Way Station. (“Flowers for Algernon” is one of my all-time favorite stories but the novel version is unnecessary.) I can only assume Dick, Le Guin, and Vonnegut are not represented because they are already in the LoA and that Dune doesn’t need any help (and is too big). Other classic novels of the 60s include Algis Budrys’ Rogue Moon (1960), Arthur C. Clarke’s A Fall of Moondust (1961), Robert A. Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land (1961) and The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress (1966), Fritz Leiber’s Swords of Lankhmar (1968), James H. Schmitz’s The Witches of Karres (1966) and The Demon Breed (1968), and Norman Spinrad’s Bug Jack Barron (1969). (Though, of course, Clarke wouldn’t be eligible and the Leiber isn’t SF.) In addition to the Anderson and Zelazny selected, Anderson’s Flandry (1966, 1969) and van Rijn (1969) novels and Zelazny’s Lord of Light (1967) are notable.
  • It’s almost #VintageSciFiMonth time! | the Little Red Reviewer. Speaking of classics from days of yore.

Birthdays

  • 1965-12-12 Toni Weisskopf
  • 1981-12-12 C. S. E. Cooney
  • 1966-12-14 Sarah Zettel
  • 1923-12-15 Freeman Dyson
  • 1863-12-16 George Santayana
  • 1917-12-16 Arthur C. Clarke
  • 1928-12-16 Philip K. Dick
  • 1973-12-16 Ted Kosmatka
  • 1913-12-18 Alfred Bester

The data in this section is from the ISFDB. ISFDB entries usually have SFE and/or Wikipedia links for biographies. For free works of older authors online, try sites like FreeSFOnline, Archive.org, Gutenberg, or PoemHunter.com.

Science

Other

History

Sports

  • Is triple option offense fading from college football? | SI.com. This is from September 27 but is a very good article (though the title should have been something like “The Triple Option from Its Origin to the Present”) and seems appropriate to honor the Army/Navy game this past Saturday (though it was substantially less option-oriented with far too many passes – Navy threw a total of seventeen times and Army even threw nine; note that Army won, just as they did last year when Navy threw twice and Army threw once). This wasn’t the best Army/Navy game but it was still good.
  • College Football Playoff is slowly killing college football | SI.com. This is all-too true. (Great opening paragraph as well.)

Humor

Music

Back to the “album”…

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Links (2018-12-05)

Science Fiction

Birthdays

The data in this section is from the ISFDB. ISFDB entries usually have SFE and/or Wikipedia links for biographies. For free works of older authors online, try sites like FreeSFOnline, Archive.org, Gutenberg, or PoemHunter.com.

  • 1890-12-05 Fritz Lang
  • 1954-12-05 Betsy Wollheim
  • 1915-12-07 Leigh Brackett
  • 1861-12-08 Georges Méliès
  • 1943-12-08 Jim Morrison
  • 1900-12-09 Margaret Brundage
  • 1830-12-10 Emily Dickinson

Science

Other

History

Humor

  • xkcd: Alpha Centauri.
  • Doonesbury by Garry Trudeau for May 19, 1991 – GoComics. In case that’s illegible, it’s a commencement speech which says, “Graduating seniors, parents and friends… / Let me begin by reassuring you that my remarks today will stand up to the most stringent requirements of the new appropriateness. / The intra-college sensitivity advisory committee has vetted the text of even trace amounts of subconscious racism, sexism, and classism. / Moreover, a faculty panel of deconstructionists have reconfigured the rhetorical components within a post-structuralist framework, so as to expunge any offensive elements of Western rationalism and linear logic. / Finally, all references flowing from a white, male, Eurocentric perspective have been eliminated, as have any other ruminations deemed denigrating to the political consensus of the moment. / Thank you and good luck.”
  • Calvin and Hobbes: Let It Snow, Spaceman Spiff Upside Down, The Economics of Santa.

Music

A super-sized birthday-week appreciation of Mr. Mojo Risin’ and friends…

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Links (2018-11-28)

Science Fiction

Birthdays

The data in this section is from the ISFDB. ISFDB entries usually have SFE and/or Wikipedia links for biographies. For free works of older authors online, try sites like FreeSFOnline, Archive.org, Gutenberg, or PoemHunter.com.

  • 1757-11-28 William Blake
  • 1951-11-30 Lucy Taylor
  • 1875-12-04 Rainer Maria Rilke
  • 1957-12-04 Eric S. Raymond

Science

  • HR 8799c: Water Detection Moves Spectroscopy Forward.
  • Complex systems help explain how democracy is destabilised. 50,000,000 Facebook Users Can’t Be Wrong. Why, that would be 5% of the user base and 0.7% of the world’s population. (This “science” article is interesting even though it mixes fact and opinion freely and ignores the destabilizing effects of direct attacks on democracy (which should be considered acts of war and responded to appropriately but, for some reason, are considered acts of “cybercrime” and “meddling” instead).)

Other

History

Humor

A Calvin and Hobbes Bananas Bonanza!

Music

The stealth DIY “alternative” compilation album continues…

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Links (2018-11-21)

Science Fiction

  • Black Gate » Old School: The Iliad. The Iliad is one of my favorite works and this is a great review because it makes it sound as awesome as it is and not like some stuffy bit of academia.

Birthdays

The data in this section is selected from the ISFDB. ISFDB entries usually have SFE and/or Wikipedia links for biographies. For works online, try sites like FreeSFOnline, Archive.org, Gutenberg, or PoemHunter.com.

  • 1694-11-21 Voltaire
  • 1835-11-21 W. W. Skeat
  • 1944-11-21 Harold Ramis
  • 1953-11-21 Lisa Goldstein
  • 1834-11-23 James Thomson
  • 1887-11-23 Boris Karloff
  • 1851-11-24 T. O’Conor Sloane, Ph.D.
  • 1916-11-24 Forrest J. Ackerman
  • 1925-11-24 William F. Buckley, Jr.
  • 1948-11-24 Spider Robinson
  • 1926-11-25 Poul Anderson
  • 1941-11-25 Sandra Miesel
  • 1963-11-25 Tony Daniel
  • 1974-11-25 Sarah Monette
  • 1894-11-26 Norbert Wiener
  • 1919-11-26 Frederik Pohl
  • 1956-11-26 Al von Ruff
  • 1907-11-27 L. Sprague de Camp

(Obviously not much else to do in the cold, dark days of late February.)

Science

Earth

Space: ‘Oumuamua

Space: Other

Other

History

Humor

Music

Here are a couple more tunes…

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Poll Follow-Up: Featured Futures' 2019 Magazine Coverage

Thanks to everyone who contributed to the poll. I knew it would guide my decisions but it turned out to almost determine them.

For the magazines I already covered which finished in the top seven (plus Compelling), nothing will change (except that I may move and/or rename the much reduced “Weekly Webzine Wrap-Ups” which may also affect the timing of the “Links” posts).

For those which finished lower in the poll, I’ll return to covering them somewhat as I did before 2018: reading all the stories unless they’re unreadable and reviewing only those which strike me as noteworthy. (I was initially thinking I’d completely drop at least some of the lower ranked magazines. However, I still want to know as much as I can about what’s going on in current short fiction and to draw attention to the best of it and I think the main difficulty was forcing myself to finish every story and say something coherent about them all in a timely manner, so I’m hoping this will lighten the load enough to be maintainable.)

As far as the write-ins, I’ll be adding complete coverage of Amazing and select coverage of The Dark. (Apologies to those who wanted to see reviews of Interzone. I’d already reached out to them early this year but never heard back and, despite multiple efforts which told them of your wishes, I haven’t heard from them this time, either.)

Projected Initial Coverage for 2019

Complete (9)

  • Amazing [new!]
  • Analog
  • Asimov’s
  • Beneath Ceaseless Skies
  • Clarkesworld
  • Compelling
  • F&SF
  • Lightspeed
  • Tor.com

Select (12)

  • Apex
  • Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores
  • The Dark [new!]
  • Diabolical Plots
  • Flash Fiction Online
  • Galaxy’s Edge
  • Nature (Futures)
  • Nightmare
  • Slate.com (Future Tense)
  • Strange Horizons
  • Terraform
  • Uncanny

Links (2018-11-14)

Science Fiction

Birthdays

Science

Other

History

Humor

Music

I often play the “A:B::B:C” game, especially with music…

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