When a reader sends a particularly poetic message
Sadly, it's not a novel — but it's still pretty exciting to have one last glimpse inside the mind of the legendary author. A collection of Banks' poetry, co-written by The Night Sessions author Ken MacLeod and edited by MacLeod, will be published on Feb. 16, 2015, which would have been Banks' 61st birthday. »
William Blake was regarded as insane by his contemporaries, due in no small part to the same "cryptic flights of poetic fire" and "marvellous, ineffable pictures" that would later see him labeled a genius. But brilliant though he was*, it's hard to read "Texts from William Blake" and not sympathize with those Romantic-era… »
Nina Katchadourian borrows the words she uses for her unusual poetry from the spines of books. She arranges those spines, book upon book, so that they form brief poems that are often insightful and surprising. »
Is this your first visit to the 30th century?
Those of you from a millennium past may experience disorientation.
Know that we have addressed our epoch to utopia.
Know that we looked to you when we designed the answer to the question of our future, a fiction. »
Yes, it's a great achievement of English literature. Yes, it's a deep work of spiritual belief and should be given due consideration. And yet, for some reason, Paradise Lost stumbles over the same things that bad comic books do. We're going to look at ten mistakes that serial-fiction writers make — even the famous… »
Charles Babbage was known as the guy who invented the difference engine and was one of the founders of modern computing. His passion for nerdery didn't just come out in design and technology. He also wrote to Tennyson with the best poetry critique ever. »
He's Khan Noonien Singh's favorite poet — but is Milton also the creator of science fiction? Milton met Gallileo, and worked lots of sciencey details into his work, and Paradise Lost hints at life on other planets. There's also Milton's "obsession with secret, all-powerful technologies." Check out Slate for all the… »
Filmmaker Florina Titz wrote to io9 to tell us about her strange new short film, Kurupuru, which she described enticingly as being about "glitches, systems, maps, unicorns and brothels." Here's the official synopsis: »Also, I have never seen a movie based on a poem. Here is the poem that filmmaker Florina Titz says…
J.R.R. Tolkien's constructed Elvish languages have such elegant characters — and have been the subject of so much Tolkien-influence art — that it's easy to forget that they was meant to be spoken. Tolkien was, after all, a linguist, and he wanted his Elvish languages to sound a certain way as they rolled from a… »
If this week's big particle physics discovery
Plenty of folks have a quote from a favorite author or a favorite artist's work tattooed on their skin. But what if you could get your favorite artists to design a tattoo especially for you? One fan asked Neil Gaiman to write a comic for his back tattoo, and Gaiman agreed. »
"All poetry is experimental poetry," Wallace Stevens once said. And the world of contemporary poetry is much like the world of fantastical and science fictional prose narratives. And if you value diversity, weirdness, and contradiction in your reading, you could do a lot worse than to develop a taste for both science… »
Poetry has a reputation for being an indulgent way to yammer on about a subject everyone's already tired of. Sure there are needless epics, but good poetry is actually designed to emphasize the strangest and most dramatic aspects of a situation as quickly as possible. That's why it can be a perfect venue for science… »
Do you want to read The Works of the Earls of Rochester and Roscommon, a volume of eighteenth century poetry? No? Well, other people did. They read it so repeatedly, and recommended it to their friends so assiduously, that it was reprinted over twenty times throughout the eighteenth century. In later years, it was… »