But, to be clear - basically, don't nominate me for anything.
I always wind up writing 3,000+ word versions of these posts, and then delete them: there are few things on the internet more annoying than bloggering (verb. 'to blog about blogging, at the expense of saying anything remotely interesting'). Rather than bore you with sixteen pages of cod philosophising and blithering self-aggrandisement: bullets!
- This is the year we went from 'a couple of people yelling into the void' to 'a dozen people yelling into the void'
- By the numbers, our most successful year ever. And growing.
- We published 260ish articles from a dozen regular contributors and a horde of guests. That includes 175+ reviews of books, comics, films, radio plays, games and stuff.
- Thank you, thank you, thank you. Being read feels awesome.
Tis the season for listicles!
And we didn't want to miss out on the fun, so we asked our contributors... friends... family... strangers... slow-moving housepets... for their 2015 favourites. As you'll see, the results aren't only indisputable and irrefutable, but also exhaustive. If something happened in 2015 and it isn't on one of these lists, it didn't happen.
There are even more lists coming over the next week, because we're lazy super-excited about sharing lists.
Our erratic and extremely particular publishing wing, Jurassic London, has a new (or very old) title on the horizon: Aleriel, A Voyage to Other Worlds.
First published in 1883, Aleriel is one of the early classics of science fiction. The titular hero explores the Solar System - from his homeworld of Venus to the 'inchoate horrors of Saturn', with lengthy stops to visit a Utopian society on Mars and, of course, Earth. Notable for the way the novel incorporated the latest scientific, political and religious thinking, Aleriel is also the first work of fiction to use the words 'Martian' or 'Venusian' to describe the residents of these planets.
This new edition of Aleriel contains the author's original prefaces and end-notes to the first and second editions, and comes with a lengthy introduction from the Richard Dunn (Head of Science and Technology, Royal Museums Greenwich) and Marek Kukula (Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich), discussing the role our celestial neighbours - especially Mars - have played in inspiring contemporary fiction.
As a further bonus, Vermilion and The Pleasure Merchant's (and Pornokitsch's) Molly Tanzer has written a brand new sequel to Aleriel, "Civilisation and Its Discontented", which investigates the repercussions of Aleriel's visit to Mars.
The cover is by Jonathan Edwards, whose distinctive style can be found in the Guardian, Q and NME, as well as adorning album covers by, amongst others, The Black Eyed Peas.
You can find various Pornokitsch people at various things, including:
- Friday, 5 pm - Writing in a Franchise - Bex chilling with Paul Kane, Mark Morris, Mark Latham and Brandon Sanderson
- Friday, 7 pm - The Weird Western - Anne moderating, and Stark Holborn, uh, moderated? alongside Guy Adams, Benedict Jones, Ben Galley and Arianne Thompson
- Saturday, 5 pm - Publishing in the 21st Century - Anne's hanging out with other friendly publishing types, including Marc Gascoigne, Gillian Redfearn, Natalie Laverick, Meg Davis and Jo Fletcher
- Saturday, 2.40 pm - Rebecca Levene reading
- Saturday, 3 pm - Agenting - Anne's wrangling an array of literary gurus, including Meg Davis, John Wordsworth, Ellen Gallagher, Kevin Murphy and Juliet Mushens
Also keep your eyes peeled for events featuring some of our favourite con-goers, writerers and talkerers, including Leila Abu el Hawa, Den Patrick, Jon Oliver, Scott Andrews, Matt Blakstad, John Connolly and Francis Hardinge.
The British Fantasy Awards take place on Sunday. Although we've not got a Pornokitsch/Jurassic horse in the race this year, Jared helped judge two of the categories (Artist and Comics), and swears that the results are awesome.
See you in the bar!
We don't shout about it much, but Pornokitsch doesn't have advertising or affiliate links. And it isn't Kickstarted, Patreonised or otherwise crowd-funded. In short, we don't take in any money at all. Not a nickel. We're very happy this way.
But... our contributors are awesome. We're lucky to have a team that includes Becky Chambers, Rebecca Levene, Stark Holborn, Mahvesh Murad, Jesse Bullington and Molly Tanzer - all of whom are responsible for some fantastic books. So if you like what you've been reading, why not check out the rest of their work? And, even better, support them by picking up one or two or three.
After the jump, a smorgasbord of literary talent for your browsing pleasure.
Becky Chambers' award-winning and absolutely sensational The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet is now available in both ebook and glorious hardcover.
The story of The Long Way is pretty well-known at this point, but, in case you want to relive it, here's the Guardian on how this kickstarted debut novel became one of Hodder & Stoughton's summer blockbusters.
Here are how a few people have reacted to the book:
"It is a quietly profound, humane tour de force that tackles politics and gender issues with refreshing optimism." - Guardian
"Humane and alien, adventurous and thoughtful, vast in its imagination and wonderfully personal in the characters it builds. But above all else, it is joyously written and a joy to read." - Claire North
"A joyous, optimistic space opera. Although it isn’t shy about tackling Big Questions, Planet is a heart-warming debut novel that will restore your faith in science fiction (specifically) and humanity (in general)." - Tor.com (uh, me)
"Does The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet really live up to the buzz? The answer is a resounding, and unconditional, YES!" - SFF World
"A refreshing, joyous book that skips neatly around convention, and – with the flick of a page – sucks you utterly into its world, so much so that you become reluctant to leave the Wayfarer and its crew" - Stark Holborn
"This is an impressive debut from an exciting author. If the series continues in this vein, we’re sure to have a new sci-fi classic on our hands." - We Love This Book
"Imagine smashing the groundbreaking, breathtaking science fiction of Ann Leckie’s Imperial Radch saga against the salty space opera of The Expanse; The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet lacks the wall-to-wall action of that latter, and some of the former’s finesse, yes—nevertheless, Becky Chambers’ debut is a delight." - Tor.com (not me)
"What it is, rather, is a book about friendships, about chosen families and how they form, about being on someone else's side, about banding together while still being yourself. It's about people making a living in a hard universe, together. It's full of heart, and I loved it.... It was the most emotionally satisfying book I've read so far this year." - The Eyrie
"In a perfect world, all books would give me the warm fuzzies the way The Long Way To A Small, Long Planet did. It is a delightful novel, full of witty repartee, nice people being nice to each other and developing warm and important relationships be them romantic or not. I can’t wait to read more from Becky Chambers." - The Book Smugglers
The complete interactive schedule-device-thing is here - with over 300 different programme items! There's a great guest list this year, with panels and workshops across a huge range of geeky topics, comics to movies to gaming to gin. Some of our favourite speakers are there, including Mary Hamilton, Glen Mehn, Meg Jayanth, Sarah Lotz, James Smythe, James Dawson, Debbie Challis, John J Johnston, Leila Abu el Hawa, Kieron Gillen, James Wallis, Sally Jane Thompson and many, many, many others.
And, on the sex and marketing fronts...