Welcome to Buzz Worthy News where the stories are awesome (or at least fun to read). Need your book industry news? Never fear, Kate Copeseeley is here to give it to you straight.
In this week’s Buzz Worthy News: Darker Shade of Magic Optioned, Tom Hanks Writes a Book, American Gods Airdate, and Nebula Nominees. All this and more!
Buzz Worthy News is Cuddlebuggery’s weekly news post bringing you all the best information about the book and blogging world, particularly for the venn diagram of people who overlap between the two.
The Handmaid’s Tale
I’ve never wanted to read this book, seems super sad. But these trailers sure are tempting me.
A Darker Shade of Magic Optioned
I’m not sure if the Hollywood Movie gods love me or hate me (I’ll let you know after I finish book three in the series), but V.E. Schwab’s Shades of Magic series has been plucked for film by Sony.
The studio has won a bidding war and is in negotiations to pick up the rights to Victoria Schwab’s fantasy series.
Gerard Butler is on board to produce the adaptation via his shingle, G-Base, along with the company’s Alan Siegel and Danielle Robinson. Neal Moritz, who has a first-look deal at Sony, also will produce, as will Schwab.
Darker Shade centers on Kell, a magician who has the ability to travel between parallel universes connected by one magical city, in this case London. Kell can travel between four parallel worlds within London, including Grey London, where residents believe magic is a myth, Red London (where magic is revered), White London (where magic is battled over) and the dark Black London, where magic has overpowered the people. When Kell meets Delilah Bard, a London pickpocket, he’s whisked into a universe-hopping adventure.
The book first hit shelves in February 2015, and the rights were available at that time, but it was only over the past couple weeks that a bidding war broke out. The studio beat out Fox 2000 and eOne as well as Lionsgate, according to sources.
Schwab followed A Darker Shade of Magic with two other books in the series: A Gathering of Shadows in 2016 and A Conjuring of Light, which just hit shelves on Feb. 21 of this year. The trilogy could be ideal for a film franchise as the second and third installments expand on the magical world introduced in Schwab’s first book. Filmmakers are said to be already lining up for a chance to put their stamp on this fantasy.
Toby Ascher is executive producing. Exec Matt Milam and Columbia Pictures president Sanford Panitch will oversee on behalf of the studio.
So… yayyyyy? Maybe. *goes off to sobbing corner to finish book*
American Gods Release Date
Hey Look! WE FINALLY KNOW WHEN WE GET TO WATCH AMERICAN GODS!!!
The television adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s best-selling fantasy novel American Gods finally has a release date. We’ve been eagerly waiting for news on the show, which will air April 30th on Starz.
The show is written by Bryan Fuller (of Hannibal and Pushing Daisies fame) and Michael Green (who co-wrote the dark new Wolverine movie Logan). It stars Deadwood’s Ian McShane as Mr. Wednesday, and The 100’s Ricky Whittle as protagonist Shadow Moon. The show will run for eight episodes, and will first screen during this year’s SXSW festival on March 11th.
First published in 2001, American Gods followed the idea that the world’s mythological creatures and gods existed based on the belief of worshippers, and that many of these gods ended up in the United States as people immigrated to the country. The novel follows Shadow, a former convict recruited by Mr. Wednesday to reclaim the former glory of the older gods, as they face off against newer, more modern gods. Like Gaiman’s signature comics series, Sandman — which is also theoretically heading for the screen, in spite of many, many setbacks — it’s a story about how myths change over time, in spite of or because of the world around them. On April 30th, we’ll finally get to see how this particular myth has changed since it was first published as a book.
*eagerly marks her calendar with the date*
Tom Hanks to Publish Book
It’s about typewriters??? Um, okay. Anyway, it’s called Uncommon Type: Some Stories.
Due in October, the first collection from the Oscar-winning star of international box-office hits such as Forrest Gump, Saving Private Ryan and Big will comprise 17 stories.
The theme of the collection will be typewriters, with each tale involving one of these more and more scarce machines. Hanks is known – in addition to his Hollywood celebrity – for his love of typewriters, and all of the tales will in some way involve one of them.
The publisher said the stories in Uncommon Type will include “a story about an immigrant arriving in New York City after his family and life have been torn apart by his country’s civil war; another about a man who bowls a perfect game (and then another, and another) becoming ESPN’s newest celebrity; another about an eccentric billionaire and his faithful executive assistant on the hunt for something larger in America; and another about the junket life of an actor.”
Hanks began writing the book in 2015. “In the two years of working on the stories,” a statement read, “I made movies in New York, Berlin, Budapest and Atlanta and wrote in all of them. I wrote in hotels during press tours. I wrote on vacation. I wrote on planes, at home, and in the office. When I could actually make a schedule, and keep to it, I wrote in the mornings from 9 to 1.”
But did he type it out on a typewriter, though?
What’s Next For Eric Heisserer?
Maybe you don’t know who that is? He’s the guy who wrote the Oscar Nominated movie Arrival that blew your mind last year. (Okay, well, it blew MY mind) It was based on a story by Ted Chiang called Story of Your Life. Now he’s breaking out of the screenwriter mold.
In the midst of Arrival mania, Heisser doesn’t just have his head in Hollywood. He’s also writing a new comic series called Secret Weapons. It’s based on Harbinger, a best-selling comic about a team of teenage superheroes.
Secret Weapons follows Harbinger alum Livewire and her new band of heroes.
This is not Heisserer’s first comic – he also wrote a couple mini-series for Dark Horse Comics. He also penned a screenplay for a film adaptation of Harbinger, which is currently in preproduction, and a second movie script based on fellow Valiant superhero comic, Bloodshot. He also just sounds like a comic book writer, describing Arrival’s Louise Banks as someone in “a position of incredible power and responsibility” – not a world away from the mantra of a certain web-slinging hero.
Secret Weapons has its origin story when Heisserer wrote the Harbinger movie script. “I had grown to admire and love Livewire as a character,” he says. He wanted so badly to see more of this character that he created an all-new story for her.
Livewire is joined by a band of other powerful youngsters. We follow Owen, Martin and Sunil, who all come from different racial backgrounds. Their cultures each influence the person they are, without defining them or making them one-dimensional.
And then there’s Nikki, who can talk to birds. Like Livewire, like Louise in Arrival, she’s another intelligent, powerful women with agency. And that’s not a coincidence.
“Honestly, I feel like characters like this are not lauded and raised up enough in mainstream media or in popular culture,” Heisserer says. “I see such a groundswell and a rising of fans who connect with them on such a deep level, in a way that I don’t see very often with male counterparts.
“And that suggests to me that there is a deeper need for characters like this to be more in the spotlight – to have some more bandwidth given to them.”
Pretty pictures at the source.
Nebula Award Nominees
It’s that time again! The SFWA has released the nominees for the 2016 Nebula awards, people! And there are some great books on there! (I say that like I’ve read more than one of them. bwhahaahaha)
Awarded annually since 1966, the Nebulas recognize the best novels, novellas, novelettes, and short stories within genre publishing. Two additional awards, the Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy and the Ray Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation, add a few extra categories. SFWA members nominate their favorites, then vote on the finalists. The Nebulas are primarily industry and professional awards, stemming from peer recognition, rather than the fan recognition that produces the better-known Hugo Awards.
The winners will be announced during this year’s Nebula conference, held between May 18th and 21st in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Underrepresented authors make a strong showing: three of the five nominees for Best Novel are authors of color, and four out of the five are women. Women dominate the shorter fiction categories as well.
Here’s the full list of nominees. (I left out the movie one, because I don’t care. Go to the source if you do)
- All the Birds in the Sky, Charlie Jane Anders (Tor; Titan)
- Borderline, Mishell Baker (Saga)
- The Obelisk Gate, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit US; Orbit UK)
- Ninefox Gambit, Yoon Ha Lee (Solaris US; Solaris UK)
- Everfair, Nisi Shawl (Tor)
- Runtime, S.B. Divya (Tor.com Publishing)
- The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe, Kij Johnson (Tor.com Publishing)
- The Ballad of Black Tom, Victor LaValle (Tor.com Publishing)
- Every Heart a Doorway, Seanan McGuire (Tor.com Publishing)
- “The Liar,” John P. Murphy (F&SF)
- A Taste of Honey, Kai Ashante Wilson (Tor.com Publishing)
- “The Long Fall Up,” William Ledbetter (F&SF)
- “Sooner or Later Everything Falls Into the Sea,” Sarah Pinsker (Lightspeed)
- “The Orangery,” Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam (Beneath Ceaseless Skies)
- “Blood Grains Speak Through Memories,” Jason Sanford (Beneath Ceaseless Skies)
- The Jewel and Her Lapidary, Fran Wilde (Tor.com Publishing)
- “You’ll Surely Drown Here If You Stay,” Alyssa Wong (Uncanny)
- “Our Talons Can Crush Galaxies,” Brooke Bolander (Uncanny)
- “Seasons of Glass and Iron,” Amal El-Mohtar (The Starlit Wood)
- “Sabbath Wine,” Barbara Krasnoff (Clockwork Phoenix 5)
- “Things With Beards,” Sam J. Miller (Clarkesworld)
- “This Is Not a Wardrobe Door,” A. Merc Rustad (Fireside Magazine)
- “A Fist of Permutations in Lightning and Wildflowers,” Alyssa Wong (Tor.com)
- “Welcome to the Medical Clinic at the Interplanetary Relay Station│Hours Since the Last Patient Death: 0,” Caroline M. Yoachim (Lightspeed)
- The Girl Who Drank the Moon, Kelly Barnhill (Algonquin Young Readers)
- The Star-Touched Queen, Roshani Chokshi (St. Martin’s)
- The Lie Tree, Frances Hardinge (Macmillan UK; Abrams)
- Arabella of Mars, David D. Levine (Tor)
- Railhead, Philip Reeve (Oxford University Press; Switch)
- Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies, Lindsay Ribar (Kathy Dawson Books)
- The Evil Wizard Smallbone, Delia Sherman (Candlewick)
Take that, Carnegie Medal!
Kelly Ripa’s Son Chose an Adult Book For A Grade School Read
Hey parents… I don’t want to sound preachy, but if you don’t WANT your kid reading books featuring stripper poles, then maybe take a read of it first so you can be like, “Hey, you can read this when you’re in high school, okay?” If it matters that much to you, I mean. Kelly Ripa learned this the hard way.
The “Live” host recalled an embarrassing tale on “The Late Show” Wednesday, when her son Joaquin, now 13, took Colbert’s 2012 humor book, “I Am A Pole (And So Can You!),” to school, only to receive a letter from the teacher over the story’s content.
“My son, when he was 9 years old, he’s dyslexic so he goes to a school where the primary focus of the education is really learning how to read. And if you master so many books, you can bring in a book of your choice and the teacher will read the book out loud to the class,” Ripa explained.
Ahead of an appearance by Colbert on “Live,” Ripa took the book home for the weekend. But before opening it, Joaquin asked if he could take it to school. Assuming her son knew more about the story than she did, Ripa agreed.
“He sends it back to me and said the teacher wouldn’t finish reading the book,” Ripa, 46, continued.
The book, which follows the adventures of a pole looking to find its place in the world, details an encounter at a strip club.
“I interned as a stripper pole, but I couldn’t stand the grind,” Ripa read aloud, before rehashing the teacher’s note.
“I got, ‘Dear Mrs. Consuelos, I’m not sure if you had read this first,’ and she said it’s a really funny book, I really tried to stick with it, but at a certain point, certain things aren’t appropriate for a 9-year-old.”
While Colbert did apologize, Ripa says she’s thankful for the hilarious memory.
“This is still the greatest school memory we have,” she said.
All’s well that ends well, I guess.
Milo Yiannopoulos’ Book Canceled
After enduring withering criticism since it was revealed in late December that it planned to publish a book by controversial Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos, Simon & Schuster said late Monday that it has canceled the book.
A brief statement released by the company read: “After careful consideration, Simon & Schuster and its Threshold Editions imprint have cancelled publication of Dangerous by Milo Yiannopoulos.”
While S&S has stayed behind its decision to publish the book for almost two months, the last straw may have come over the weekend when organizers of the Conservative Political Action Conference disinvited Yiannopoulos after a video interview emerged of him appearing to condone pedophilia. Yiannopoulos denied that he condoned pedophilia and that the video had been edited. Nevertheless Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative Union which is organizing the meeting, issued a statement early on Monday saying they had canceled his appearance. S&S’s statement followed a few hours later.
Dangerous had originally been set to be released in March, but last week Yiannopoulos posted on Facebook that he was delaying publication until June to include the events that took place at the University of California’s Berkeley campus when violent protests forced him to cancel an appearance.
S&S’s decision to publish the book was condemned by many industry members who were outraged that the company would give a platform to someone they considered racist and misogynist. Others backed the publication on the grounds of supporting free speech.
Reflective of the debate over the planned release of the book was the opposing opinion pieces that appeared in PW’s Soapbox column. In her essay, Joy Peskin, editorial director of FSG Books for Young Readers, said the decision to publish Dangerous tarnished the entire book industry. Yiannopoulos’s agent, Thomas Flannery, responded with a defense, observing that “the right to speak freely should be the bedrock of our industry.”
Children’s Author Mem Fox Detained In US
AUSTRALIA’S best-loved children’s author, Mem Fox, was left sobbing and shaken after being detained for two hours and aggressively interrogated by immigration officials at Los Angeles airport.
Fox says she’s unlikely to ever travel to the United States again after being made to feel like “a prisoner at Guantanamo Bay”.
En route to Milwaukee for a conference on February 9, where she was to deliver the opening keynote address at a literacy conference, Fox was ushered into an airport holding room and told she was travelling on the wrong visa. This was incorrect and the US Embassy in Canberra has since apologised. Fox, 70, said that by the time she checked in to her hotel she was shaking and sobbing.
“I am old and white, innocent and educated, and I speak English fluently,” she said. “Imagine what happened to the others in the room, including an old Iranian woman in her 80s, in a wheelchair.
“The way I was treated would have made any decent American shocked to the core, because that’s not America as a whole, it really isn’t. It’s just that people have been given permission to let rip in a fashion that is alarming.”
The irony that the two most popular of her more than 25 books published in the US, Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes and Whoever You Are, are both about diversity, was not lost on her. Nor was the fact that the theme of the conference she was attending was inclusivity and diversity.
Fox has visited the US more than 100 times since 1985, and is widely known there as an author and literacy educator.
Poor woman. It sounds like she was really shaken by her experience.