After yesterday’s entry in which I expressed my, uh, concern about Ashleigh’s return to the production offices following her Mexico getaway (at the height of the pandemic hysteria no less), I found the following comment awaiting moderation:
Am back safe and sound! Hope you had a good week. Listen, I was speaking to Lawren outside your office and had this strange coughing fit. I had to duck into your office so I wouldn’t spread it down the hallway, don’t worry though, I closed your door right away so none of the germs would be able to seep out.
While I was in there I thought what a great place to sit and relax while the guys are away, so I am now working out of your office.
Hope you don’t mind!
Boy, I hope this sore throat goes away soon….”
I called up the production offices and was transferred to Ashleigh who informed me that, for the time being, she’d be working out of my office. “Are you touching anything?”I asked, my voice edged with apprehension. She assured me that she was touching EVERYTHING.
A reminder to all you voracious readers, occasional readers, and those possessed of the ability TO read – this month’s book of the month club discussions fast approaches.
In the SF category, it’ll be:
I Remember the Future: The Award-Nominated Stories of Michael A. Burstein, by Michael A. Burstein
From the publisher: “You don’t need a collection of antique spaceships or a carefully calibrated time machine to share the memories of the final Holocaust survivor. You don’t have to jump through the gate between universes in search of a lost friend. All you have to do is open your eyes. You’ll remember the future. The future remembers you.”
For those interested, Jason Sizemore over at Apex (http://www.apexbookcompany.com/uncategorized/2008/11/choose-your-apex-store/) has kindly created a discount code our club members can use to get 20% off the HC or the PB versions of the book. Just enter “MALLOZZITWENTY” on checkout and you’re done. In fact, it’s active for anything in the Apex store except pre-orders.
Book club discussion the week of May 18th with author Michael A. Burstein.
In the Fantasy category, it’ll be:
The Land of Laughs, by Jonathan Carroll
From the publisher: “ Have you ever loved a magical book above all others? Have you ever wished the magic were real? Welcome to The Land of Laughs. A novel about how terrifying that would be.
Schoolteacher Thomas Abbey, unsure son of a film star, doesn’t know who he is or what he wants–in life, in love, or in his relationship with the strange and intense Saxony Gardner. What he knows is that in his whole life nothing has touched him so deeply as the novels of Marshall France, a reclusive author of fabulous children’s tales who died at forty-four.
Now Thomas and Saxony have come to France’s hometown, the dreamy Midwestern town of Galen, Missouri, to write France’s biography. Warned in advance that France’s family may oppose them, they’re surprised to find France’s daughter warmly welcoming instead. But slowly they begin to see that something fantastic and horrible is happening. The magic of Marshall France has extended far beyond the printed page…leaving them with a terrifying task to undertake.”
Book club discussion the week of May 25th with author Jonathan Carroll.
In the horror category, it’ll be:
The Unblemished, by Conrad Williams
From Publisher’s Weekly: “Playing on humanity’s deepest fears and taboos, Williams plunges the reader deep into a hellish near-future where creatures banished five centuries ago rise again to lay eggs in the few people they don’t consume alive, turning London into a cross between hive and abattoir. Caught up in the grisly madness are photographer Bo Mulvey, who goes looking for excitement and gets more than he bargained for; Sarah Hickman and her beautiful, disturbed daughter, Claire, on the run from a hit man with an amputation fetish; and Gyorsi Salavaria, a cannibalistic child killer determined to become the mate of the invaders’ new queen. Williams (Use Once, Then Destroy) is so good at what he does that he probably shouldn’t be allowed to do it anymore, for the sake of everyone’s sanity.”
Says Keithe Brooke, The Guardian: “The Unblemished, winner of the International Horror Guild’s Best Novel award, is cleverly constructed, building relentlessly from intense, intimate terror to something on another scale altogether.”
Says Peter Straub: “This is horror literature unabashed and entire, at full imaginative stretch, beautiful and blazing.”
Says Nick Ryan, Sunday Express: “- top-notch writing skills, poetic vision and beautiful prose raise this way above your Hammer House of Horror… an unusual – as well as highly accomplished – terror.”
Discussion begins the week of June 1st when we’ll be joined by author Conrad Williams.
Finally, thanks to everyone who took the time to post their condolences and well-wishes for the DeLuise family. Peter is understandably preoccupied right now but when he comes back to Vancouver, I’ll be sure to direct him to your kind thoughts. Although I never got to work with Dom (Urgo was before my time on the show), I had the pleasure to meet him at Peter’s wedding. He was an incredibly warm and gracious man. His hilarious impromptu speech that night had everyone on the floor and, as I told Peter, upstaged him at his own wedding! It’s nice to see he has so many fans.
Daniel Willis writes: “Will sgu have a long, catchy beginning like sg1 and atlantis?”
Answer: Joel Goldsmith is working on the theme as we speak. No word yet on actual length.
David writes: “ I was just wondering as official blog person for SGU why you did not get to go to new Mexico to get those behind the scenes photos for the blog or have you or MGM/scifi assigned someone else to that job.”
Answer: I’m “official” insofar as I’m the one person with extensive behind-the-scenes access and information who maintains a regular online presence. It isn’t a job – more a fun extra I do here and for the SciFi site.
David also writes: “ Why I am grateful for the behind scenes shots of the icarus set, loving it, but do you know when you be allow to post pictures of the destiny set or perhaps even some of the other random sets.”
Answer: MGM wants to hold off on the Destiny set pics because they have something special in the works. As for the other sets – I’ve already forwarded the network some more pics and am waiting for them to sign off on the shuttle.
David also writes: “ About this short story, do you know how widely it will be able for sale and can you tell us any of the other authors taking part in the anthology.”
Answer: It will be published in an anthology that will be widely available. I’ll be sharing the book with a lot of experienced and supremely talented writers in the field of prose fiction – as well as experienced and supremely talented writers working in a, uh, another field of writing.
David also writes: “Any chance of the new cast doing a question and answer session anytime soon on the blog.”
Answer: Why, yes. I’ve asked a bunch and they’re all eager to make a guest visit. But they’d like to settle into their characters first.
David writes: “A friend and I was just wondering what is the most expensive shoot stargate SG1/Atlantis has ever done and how far up the list does new mexico shooting come up the list.”
Answer: I’d say Vegas was probably our most expensive episode to date.
BlondieChemGirl writes: “Where do you get your Amarula? Do they sell it in the states?”
Answer: Not sure if they sell it in the U.S., but I can pick it up at my local liquor store.
PG15 writes: “1. Who does Brie belong to?”
Answer: Not me.
PG15 also writes: “2. Who is/will direct Justice?”
Answer: Off the top of my head – I don’t know.
PG15 also writes: “3. On February 17th, you wrote:
Today was “spin and break” day with one of the new writers. We bounced around a bunch of ideas, came up with an intriguing backstory for Wray (but not before some vehement disagreement on her first name), and, ultimately, fleshed out what promises to be yet another story chock full of wonderful little character moments. And we even managed to come up with an episode title. We are on fire!
So what episode was this about?”
PG15 also writes: “4. And while I’m at it, on March 16th, you wrote:
Brad then pytched out hys revysed notion for an ydea he’s been battyng around for a whyle now. A great premyse wyth an yntryguing mystery at yts core, a wonderful opportunyty for one of our characters, all wrapped up in a an ultymately touchyng theme.
What episode was this about?”
Answer: A still-untitled story in the back half.
PG15 also writes: “5. Finally, on March 24th, you wrote:
We talked Tekkonkinkreet, Takashi Miike, and Minister Faust before I was called into the writer’s room to help spin a new story on another freelance script, this one a wonderful exploration of the Rush character. By lunch, we had the story broken
What episode was this about?”
Answer: Another story for the back half, this one is being scripted by a freelancer.
Trish writes: “Will ANY of the SGU epi titles be more than one word?”
Answer: For season one – unlikely. Come around season 10, you’re likely to get titles like “The Team Gets Stranded On A Planet With No Sun”.
F-fae-Glasgow writes: “You have probably answered this before however, has the SGA gate become the main gate for Earth?”
Answer: This question will be answered in the SGA movie.
Jenny R. writes: “Good on you for refusing to twitter. I think it’s slightly ridiculous myself. It’s sort of like the annoying parts of facebook on speed. I really don’t need to know what a person is doing all the time.”
Answer: Here are my twitter updates for the day. Enjoy –
– I like bananas.
– I’m looking at the thesaurus sitting on my bookshelf.
– How do you pronounce Totoro anyway?
– I went outside and accidentally swallowed a bug.
– I think I’ll throw out my old business cards.
– I need new socks.
– The dogs are hungry.
– The dogs are always hungry.
– Hey, I can hold my breath past sixty seconds!
– 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time is 7:00 p.m. Pacific.
– When I was a kid, I had a bike with a banana seat.
– My sister had a bike with a basket in the front.
– Hey, where’s my blackberry?
– Never mind. Found it!
Check in tomorrow for the latest fascinating updates.
Banderas writes: “1. What is this Homeworld Command you talked about on the blog yesterday. Is this the Headquarters of Homeworld Security?
2. So there won’t be any SGC in future movies and in SGU. Is there any chance that you will use the new sets as the SGC(at least the Gateroom) for a scene?
3.Is the uniform Col. Tellford wearing, a unique uniform for the Icarus base or it will be a new kind of SG uniform?
4. Is there any Alien+Alien ship concept art already behind the scenes or will you do that later? If yes, does the art department enjoy this “new-kind” of task(at least for SG)?
5. Will we can get some new information about the “Pre-Atlantis” Ancients in SGU?
6. Will there be any Ancient handheld-weaponry on the ship?”
Answers: 1. Yes.
2. I never said there wouldn’t be any SGC in future moives.
3. It’s an Icarus Base uniform.
4. Lots of alien and alien ship concept art that I’ll eventually showcase. And, yes, the Art Department loves this kind of stuff.
6. Remains to be seen.
Major D. Davis writes: “1. Do you like cats? Would your dogs like it if you got a cat? Would they get along? Do you even want to buy a cat?
2. Will the Odyssey be involved in the premier of SGU (Cause Caldwell said something about the Odyssey in Eatg)?
3. I was reading over the Brad Wright Q&A that was in January and he said the SG-1 movie would be made in the spring. Why would he say that, i mean, we already know Martin and Amanda would be busy with Sanctuary and you guys would be busy with SGU.:
Answers: 1. I like cats but have no plans to get one.
2. No comment.
3. He said that because, at the time, the plans were to shoot it in the spring. Regardless of who is busy when, we have to choose a time that is most convenient for the production. And, keep in mind, we were producing Atlantis when the first two SG-1 movies were being shot.
Hugh writes: “I was just wondering, do any of you spin an episode and begin to write it before realising half way through that it jsut won’t work?”
Answer: Off the top of my hand, I can’t remember a story we ever took the time to spin that wasn’t written.
MightyStarGazer writes: “So Joe, will we Wraith Fans *waves to Das* ever know more about them? Will we ever learn if they do have a homebase-planet, if the kiddie-wraiths are born or hatched or both (well, except for the drones, obviously they are hatched), and *blush* if the wraiths are… hrmm… compatible, with humans…?”
Answer: Hopefully this is something we could explore in a future Atlantis movie.
PoorOldEgarDerby writes: “ Please settle a bet. Which would receive an incoming wormhole: the Atlantis gate whilst in San Francisco Bay or a pre-existing Tauri gate connected to a DHD?”
Answer: If the Atlantis gate was properly calibrated and synced to the Milky Way network, then it would become the default gate.