Salon Futura #8

The latest issue of Salon Futura is online today, and includes my article on Yukinobu Hoshino, the manga artist behind 2001 Nights, the Professor Munakata series, and, much, much more. I’ve just written the entry on Hoshino for the forthcoming third edition of the Encyclopaedia of Science Fiction, which now includes full bibliographies for Japanese subjects, so the article is the result of several days of cataloguing and poking around Hoshino’s publication record. My ongoing work on the encyclopaedia, however, amounts to an entire book-within-a-book about Japanese SF authors and winners of the Sei’un Awards, so you’ll see more in a similar vein someday soon. As for 2001 Nights, UK residents can catch it at the Sci Fi London all-nighter on 30th April.

Meanwhile, last week I dropped in on a London studio in order to see how things were going on the English audio recording of Musashi: Dream of the Last Samurai, which will be out from Manga Entertainment in July. I turned up for an afternoon session to discover that the studio’s previous occupant had left his trousers behind on the sofa. One wonders what kind of impression that must have made in Soho, if he was wandering around attired only from the waist up, like some celebrity version of Donald Duck. Luckily, of course, it was Soho, so I imagine nobody noticed.

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Salon Futura #7

The new issue of Salon Futura is up online now, and features an article from me about Shotaro Ishinomori, Ken MacLeod on science fiction’s uses in international relations, interviews with Ian McDonald and C.E. Murphy, and much much more. As a special bonus: your chance to see Starfish Hitler.

Salon Futura #6

The latest issue of Salon Futura is now up online, with a special Valentine’s Day theme in which I contribute the article “1778 Ways to Say I Love You”, about the Japanese science fiction author Taku Mayumura.

Meanwhile, I staggered back into London at dawn this morning on the sleeper from Glasgow, where yesterday’s storylining workshop produced the utterly bonkers Waxing Moon – the tale of a family of werewolves (plus one hapless were-iguana), whose tanning and waxing salon is under threat from business rivals at a vampire hat shop. The end result was a sort of supernatural pastiche of the Brady Bunch, with a werewolf and a vampire girl falling in love while rehearsing the school play Romeo & Juliet in which the Romeo and the Juliet genuinely do come from two contending aristocratic houses. It is a shame that we shall never see a real-life TV show in which orange-skinned vampires dominate at the high-school fencing club, or where the super-cool, super-vain vampire elder brother is a boy called Gary, who glitters. With a music teacher called Shump Jarking.

As with earlier incarnations at the Irish Film Institute and Screen Academy Wales, it’s always fascinating to see the shows that people come up with when they are given the rules that professional writers have to follow. Waxing Moon joins Decontaminators, Hattie Bast: Mummy’s Girl and Choc Shock among the alternate-world TV show ideas that have come up in a couple of years of the storylining workshop. What made Waxing Moon different and rather precious is that the storyliners were all teenagers themselves.

Salon Futura #3

Issue #3 of Salon Futura is up online, and features my article about Yasutaka Tsutsui, the novelist known to most anime fans through the movie adaptations of Paprika, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time and most recently, the live-action Nanase Again. He’s a man with a multifaceted career, and some truly unexpected achievements, so do check it out. There’s also a fascinating article about a book on prehistoric science fiction, interviews, reviews… lots.

Redline

Issue #2 of Salon Futura is now up online, and includes my in-depth piece on the origins of Takeshi Koike’s Redline – just out in the US and Japan, and due to play at Scotland Loves Anime this weekend.

Meanwhile, as if that wasn’t enough crazy action, Danica Davidson has interviewed me today over at the Otaku USA website.