Magpie Monday

Here are some shiny things that caught my eye recently:

♦ If you’re looking for some science fiction poetry, check out Rebecca Ariel Porte’s list at io9 of the best books of poetry for every kind of science fiction fan.

Here are some book covers I saw this week that I liked:

Paul Bartlett won The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Re-Covered Books Contest at The Fox is Black with this emerald lovely (click all the images in the post to see larger):

The cover of James Renner’s The Man from Primrose Lane is really provocative (io9 has a synopsis and excerpt):

♦ I’m not getting married, but I found Jessica Claire’s book-themed wedding invitations to be so charming I almost want to get married so I can do something similar. Almost. In the meantime, I’ll just admire her handiwork. Click the link above to see more images and all the details (these invitations are very intricate—you really want to see everything that’s contained in the copper pocket), but below are shots of the invitations themselves, ensconced as they are in old books:

I like the possibilities for this kind of invitation—not just weddings, but also birthday or Hallowe’en party invitations? Or why not use the design for a special gift? My wheels get to turning….

If you’re not terribly crafty yourself, people will make these for you: Whimsique on Etsy, for example, sells vintage book custom wedding invitations, similar to the ones above. At $175 for 10 invitations, I hope you’re planning a small ceremony.


I ran across two really great pieces of super-hero art. First up is Sam Humphries’ cover for Ultimate Comics: Ultimates. I don’t read this series (or any of Marvel’s Ultimate line), but, dang, this cover is good:

Greg Guillemin created minimalist posters of five iconic super-heroes: Batman, Superman, Spider-Man, Hellboy, and the Silver Surfer. Below is my favorite, but you owe it to yourself to click through to see the others, all of which rock. Via.

♦ If you like bell jars—and who doesn’t?—you’ll appreciate the ideas over at Domythic Bliss for decorating with them. Grace also has a how-to post about her Faerie Book Tree in a Dome that’s pretty fun.

While we’re on the subject of mythic decorating, Domythic Bliss also had three great posts last week about using the Green Man. Below are two of the featured Green Men that made me gre—oh, that was going to be a terrible pun. Let’s just say I wants these preciouses!

Speaking of the preciouses, I am gaga over Takanori Aiba‘s miniature metropolises made from bonsai trees and other stuff. I’m only including an image of one of these delights, but please click through to see the rest; they are all fantastic (in the many senses of that word):

Writers’ Corner. Some interesting posts for you this week.

Chuck Wendig lays down 25 things you should know about protagonists. As always, he has some unique but helpful takes on the subject.

Charlie Jane Anders at io9 had a great post about the 10 worst mistakes that authors of alternate history make (plus another worst mistake, to boot). A really good read, and I know I’ll come back to those posts because I have what I think is a pretty cool alternate history idea that I’ve been rolling around in my head, and I want to get it as right as possible.

Todd Anderson has some ideas about how to jumpstart your creative career in a bad economy. Via.

Krissy Brady tells us how to effectively create more time to write.  Via.

Neil Gaiman reposted on his tumblr the following guideline to writing a novel:

♦ At The Huffington Post, Theodora Goss listed her Top 10 Fantasy Love Stories. I know nine of the ten stories, and I can’t say I disagree with her. My favorites on her list: Richard St. Vier and Alec Campion in Ellen Kushner’s sublime Swordspoint, “The Ballad of Tam Lin” (though Goss leaves out the fact that Janet is pregnant when she goes to rescue Tam Lin, which adds something important to the story), “The Legend of Tristan and Iseult” (the best version, for my money, is Diana L. Paxson’s The White Raven—click the image of the cover art by Thomas Canty at left to see it in its full beauty), and “Beauty and the Beast” (one of my favorite fairy tales, too).

If you’re looking for some old-fashioned fairy-tale romance, check out Gina Biggs’ adaptation of The Farmer’s Clever Daughter.

Speaking of fairy tales, Better Book Titles had a really funny take on Grimm’s Fairy Tales:

Well, I laughed!

Also speaking of fairy tales, flyway has a terrific interview with fairy-tale writer, scholar, and advocate Kate Bernheimer. Via.

♦ In the realm of the completely awesome:

Speaking of awesome people doing things, thanks to Thomas and Taylor at Better than Visiting Sunnydale, I discovered the mega-awesome tumblr Awesome People Reading (the pictures I chose below are for people who know why):

Cameron, you did well with The Horror Portfolio, but can you name all 26 movies in Evan Seitz’s animated ABCinema?

♦ Okay, people, this video is the most thrilling 4:40 minutes of my life this week. The earth thunders with its awesomeness, and I defy any to naysay me on this!


♦ A Month of Letters challenge update: another terribly busy week, but I did post something every day this week, including a poem, two postcards, and a collection of wolf pictures. One day I did count an Amazon return as something I posted, which technically shouldn’t be included, I suppose. If you’d like me to send you something in the post this month (you don’t have to reciprocate), let me know here or on Facebook—the challenge is almost over, folks, so don’t be shy!

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