Open Your Eyes

A space traveler named Ekhi, impregnated by a supernova, is rescued from her dying ship by the ragtag crew of a mercenary vessel.  Once onboard, she falls under the watchful eye of the ship’s captain, Itsasu, a cyborg mind trapped in an emaciated shell of a body floating in a nutrient-rich solution.  While Ekhi is sequestered and Itsasu plots the resurrection of her long dead husband, the rest of the dysfunctional crew struggles with sibling rivalry, unrequited lust, and fierce jealousies.  But when the ship is attacked by an alien incursion force, a deadly linguistic virus is loosened, and the vessel’s own AI turns the tables on its unsuspecting crew, things take a turn for the REALLY weird.

Open Your Eyes, Paul Jessup’s breakthrough novella, is visually dynamic, outrageously imaginative, and at times an altogether baffling read.  The characters are a colorful and intriguing assortment (Ekhi who carries a true cosmic egg within her, the motherly Itsasu and her cadre of mind-controlled dolls, young Hodei obsessed with a softcore magazine model, his brother Sugoi a witless giant prone to violent mood swings, and the relatively level-headed Mari caught between them), swept along in a surreal scenario that pushes the boundaries of science fiction well into science fantasy.  Which isn’t a bad thing.  It’s a bizarre kaleidoscope of a narrative to be sure, delivering an almost-overwhelming array of alternately brilliant and bewildering images, ideas, and plot-driven developments, offering up just enough to engage without really explaining.  On the one hand, this works beautifully as the story builds its momentum from one breathtakingly clever concept to the next (that contagious meme capable of reducing a brain to pudding was a personal favorite), never slowing to wallow in the details as it drives toward its epiphanic climax.  On the other hand, this disdain for details carries through to its final pages, making for an open-ended and not wholly satisfying conclusion.  It’s an incredibly ambitious book and, even if some of its wildly varied components remain unexplained or unattended (Ekhi all but disappears following her introduction), Jessup should be lauded for this positively fearless foray into scifi fantasy.

Despite the occasionally elusive narrative elements and its lack of closure, getting there is still a treat and a half, a mesmeric, mind-bending journey under the guidance of the New Weird’s rising star.

Finally, let me make special mention of the cover art (“The Day Dreamer”) by Daniele Cascone that does such a spot-on job of mirroring the book’s sense of blossoming apprehension and wild, wide-eyed wonder.  It’s what led me to pick up the book in the first place.  Lately, it’s been just the opposite.  I can’t tell you how many titles I’ve deep-sixed solely on the basis of their truly horrendous artwork.

So, those were my initial thoughts.  Let’s get a discussion going.  And start posting your questions for author Paul Jessup.

Also, a little reminder: if you glance over at the right sidebar, you’ll note that I have already announced the November book of the month club selection: Emissaries from the Dead by Aam-Troy Castro.  Looks like a good one so make sure to pick up your copy and start reading.  Discussion begins the week of November 9th.

Today, I had lunch with Special Features Producer Ivon Bartok.  Somewhere between our Crunchy and Munch Roll and the grilled saba, I received the ratings for last Friday’s airing of Air III.  They were an eye-opener.  A 1.8!  Now what’s astounding here is not so much the number itself (although 1.8 is great) but the fact that we actually went UP from the premiere.  I mean, that’s unheard of.  Who would have thought?!  Oh, wait.  I know.  David Blue.  About a month before the premiere, he predicted that we would actually build our audience following Air I and II.  I told him that would be nice but highly unlikely given that most every series sees a drop-off in its second week.  Well, he proved me wrong and I am now a believer. Tomorrow, I’m going to swing by set and pester him for some winning lottery numbers.

Following lunch, Ivon and I stopped by HMV where I picked up some TV on DVD.  While we were perusing the horror selection, a helpful employee approached and asked  whether we required any assistance.  We thanked him but told him we were just browsing to which he replied: “Alright.  By the way, I love SGU.”.  Huh?  What was that?  Turns out he recognized both Ivon and I from my blog – which I find ineffably bizarre, the fact you guys are actually real!  Anyway, Mark is a transplanted Aussie and, more importantly, a big fan of the franchise, so Ivon and I ended up chatting Stargate with him.  Before heading out, I got him to fess up to his favorite characters: Carter on SG-1 and Scott on SGU.

Hey, speaking of our Lieutenant Scott, best birthday wishes go out to birthday boy Brian J. Smith who will not doubt be partying all night in celebration (and then going to bed at an early hour so that he’ll be fresh and prepared for tomorrow’s early call).

Today’s entry is dedicated to birthday individual Ultracurious.

Oh, by the way, in addition to those DVD’s, I also picked up a few books:


Hey, Dairy Queen is offering a pumpkin pie blizzard.  Just thought you should know.

69 thoughts on “October 12, 2009: Open Your Eyes by Paul Jessup

  1. …impregnated by a super nova! That’s a new one on me!
    Imagine trying to get your friend’s to believe that story!!

    I have watched parts one and two of SGU and it has been quite enjoyable. Robert Carlyle looks shifty and creepy – another Scottish doctor 😉

    Apart from SGU the TV has been pretty abysmal lately. I watched the Garfield film and though – good viewing.

  2. Hey, Joe!

    Just found the first few “Daniel Jackson on…” videos on the MGM website, and had a little bit of a geek-out over them. They’re fantastic!

    Just curious – is this another one of Ivon’s contributions to the franchise this year, or is it something that Brad and Rob cooked up?

  3. Hi Joe,

    Congrats on the great ratings. Here’s to Season 2. And, Happy B-Day to Brian. What a great month for him to celebrate.

    I agree with what you have written about Open Your Eyes. Thanks much for recommending this. It was pretty much a mind-mender for me. It was alternately wonderful and at times completely elusive. I actually did like it but this came more after the fact than while I was reading it.

    It’s a short length and was a really fast read. But this was deceptive because it is densely packed with ideas and has very little exposition. In fact, I think Paul Jessup may be “allergic” to exposition. So, I found myself guessing what some things were along the way because there were so few or no explanations for some things at all. In fact, I think it was the vivid imagery he evoked with his text that helped me most to understand things in the progression of the story. In some ways, I got more of a visual sense about this work than a literary one – if that makes any sense at all.

    Many ideas kept popping into my head after I finished reading this book. I almost felt like Jack O’Neill after he stuck his head in the Ancients’ Repository of Knowledge because so many vivid images and ideas kept “unspooling” in my mind long after I put the book down. And the language virus to boot – really ironic. So anybody who hasn’t read this yet – if you’re thinking of dropping some Acid, don’t bother. Just read this book.

    I will have some questions for Paul Jessup in a couple of days. I’m really interested in reading his Q&A.

  4. Joe said:
    the ratings for last Friday’s airing of Air III. They were an eye-opener. A 1.8! Now what’s astounding here is not so much the number itself (although 1.8 is great) but the fact that we actually went UP from the premiere. I mean, that’s unheard of. Who would have thought?! Oh, wait. I know. David Blue.

    David Blue should get a gold star for that prediction. Or at least lunch on Joe. At Fuel, of course …

    You go, Eli !!!

  5. Yep Joe, we are real – the invite to Orlando is still open. Sheryl has picked out a cool place and it’s not far from Universal!!!

    That’s wild some one recognized y’all. cool!

  6. Happy Birthday Brian Smith!!
    – The November book is on order, should be here in a couple days. Not so lucky with a couple others I was looking for, will have to try other avenues. Never was able to get Open Your Eyes, sorry.
    -See, you guys (Ivon and you) are really famous, I would recognize you on the street, well maybe…, unless you are wearing those cool foster grants.
    Have a wonderful day!

  7. Do you know how the people that make Stargate decide how old a particular character is in the show? Like when they were born, because I’ve noticed it seems to differ from their actor’s age sometimes.

  8. Congrats on the ratings…although I have no idea what they mean. I’ll just take your word for it that they were good.

    Very tired, so calling it a night. As always, thanks for the blog – it’s really the only thing I look forward to anymore on the net. I think I’m getting information and tech overload, and any more forums and stuff are just too busy and confusing. But it’s always nice and comfy here…like a favorite pair of fuzzy slippers.

    [The very real] das

  9. That should have been ‘lately forums and stuff’…as I said, I’m very tired. Nite.


  10. Unless I was expecting to see you, Joe, YOU would have to recognize ME. Not ashamed of my bad face/name connection skills…they are hereditary.

    That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  11. Happy Birthday Brian!!!!

    Awesome on the ratings. The midnight showing of SGU and Sanctuary looks to become a regular thing on Friday nights at my house now. The small group has invited it’s self back next week.

    Joe, Did you seriously just advertise for my job to everyone? Or were you unaware that I was an assistant manager of a DQ/BP station? If you ever want to know what the flavor of the month is going to be just ask. I’ll be happy to share.

    The Pumpkin Pie blizzard is yummy but I don’t like the frozen pie shell so I always leave that out. Just the pumpkin, the vanilla ice cream, and the whip cream for me.

    However my favorite blizzard is still brownie chunks, chocolate shavings, and chocolate ice cream. Mmmm I’m getting hungry.

  12. I’ve found that it’s a good idea to alternate Pratchett with other books. I tell my self it’s a way to ration the Pratchetty goodness, but I think it’s actually a self-preservation technique on the part of my brain.

    So my puppy is acting really weird today. Usually he follows me around the house, but today he’s more than happy to hang out in my bed, even when I’m not in the room. When I bring him up stairs he trembles and won’t eat.

  13. RE: Yesterday’s blog entry and what maggiemayday said to Duneknight. (sorry I can’t repeat it)

    Could somebody please find my eyeballs and help me pop them back in?

    Congratulations on your ratings. Your little TV show has big screen qualities.

    Happy birthday Mr. Smith!

  14. ” … I find ineffably bizarre, the fact you guys are actually real! “. I suspect Mark felt something like that upon meeting you. I think many other fans might feel the same thing if they were to have a similiar encounter with you., never mind meeting Mr. Bartok or any of the others you’ve so often pictured in your blog. It does lead to a nightmarish question though. Are all of us here on the blog in fact real? do AIs walk among us? Or are we all constructs of some extra-dimensional being who is simply dreaming us into existance? Ye gods. Now I’ve gone from laughing at your comment to a full blown existential crisis.
    I’m going to defer on posting about Open Your Eyes until the morrow, for a number of reasons I won’t bother to list. Thanks for review and all the other cool stuff you do for your readers and your fans by posting daily.

  15. Congratulations on the ratings! Well deserved.

    The reason there’s only 22 million Australians actually in Australia is because we’ve invaded every other country. It’s our grand plan you see. If you start saying, “Bewdy Mate”, start to answer every question with “Yeah, nah” and develop a craving for black yeast products that spread on toast then Phase 1 has begun and you will all soon be converted. Was going to say assimilated, but I’m not a Trekie and I think there’s some law against quoting a show you’re not officially a fan of that is punishable by death.

  16. Hey, Joe!

    Couple of questions for you. Was there a timeline made to show the launching of the Destiny in relation to the launching of Atlantis? ie. Which launched first? And if so, will that info be given as the season progresses?

    Also, have you been watching Sanctuary? Just curious.

    I’ve really been enjoying SGU. Looking forward to more.

  17. Oh man, that HMV guy is one heckuva lucky dude! I’m not sure what I would do if I ran into Stargate people outside of a con. Squee like a fangirl, probably. Then ask for a picture with them. Then run away before they called the police! 😉

    I’ve already requested Emissaries from the Dead from the state library system. They said it might take up to two weeks to get here.

  18. Anyone else watching Castle? It’s worth it for Nathan Fillion’s facial expressions alone. If you haven’t, you should really check it out!

  19. Congratulations on the uptick from the premiere. Tell David he should send me some lottery numbers too, I could use them! I was watching the Gateworld thread on SGU’s ratings very obsessively lately, because as several of us recognized, this episode’s numbers would be quite crucial indeed. Now it’s ever-onward; the next few episodes will also be incredibly important. If we can somehow manage to hover above a 1.5 or so, especially with these demos going through the roof, I daresay you’ve done something amazing here!

    By the by, do you think particularly high ratings with SGU will help influence MGM to (insert way for them to come up with the necessary funding here) and then get the SGA movie and third SG-1 movie on the road already? We’ve been fretting quite a bit lately, we know those sets still standing for SGA don’t pay for themselves, and… oi, I know you won’t be able to offer much of a statement here, but I felt like venting. As much as I’m liking SGU, I really want to see more of the classics and would oh-so-gladly buy both DVDs!

  20. First off, congratulations on a great series premiere.

    I just finished watching Air I, III, and III on Hulu.comand am very grateful that’s and option, so Kudos to those at NBC/Universal for this option. Do Hulu ‘ratings’ count towards DVD+7?

    As a regular reader of your blog, I felt well prepared for watching these episodes, you have done a fantastic job of preparing us for the new series and not giving too much away. While watching parts I & II I was hoping for more story to move things along, then I remembered a comment form the ‘Firefly’ DVD that it’s very difficult to write a pilot because they tend to be 90% exposition. That being said, for all the exposition included I thought Parts I & II did a great job of introducing the characters, the premise and the style of the series. I am very glad that there are so many unanswered questions after the first 3 hours of programming and am looking forward to the rest of season 1. While reading through the past few days mailbags I found I was able to answer most of the questions asked myself from what you’ve told us through the blog…or thinking to myself… GEEZ it’s the first 3 episodes people, why answer all these questions already?!

    The pod, shuttle, whatever that was launched at the end of Air III had me cursing the wait for this weeks episode… did anyone notice? What was it? Where is it going?! Will we see the dust devils again? Inquiring minds want to know… Same Bat time Same bat channel…

    Anyway, serious question now after all that.

    The face shown in the sand, was that an ancient or was that the face of the priest that raised the Lt?

    Thanks a lot, looking forward to the rest of the season.

  21. Hi Joe!
    I can’t believe I got to meet you and Ivon today, and received a mention in the blog too! Thanks for taking the time to chat to me – I couldn’t wipe the smile from my face all day 🙂

    Not so long ago I was told that we’re not meant to bother our favourite celebs if we happen to see them in the store, but there was no way I was gunna pass up the opportunity to tell you how much I love your work!

    Anyway, I realised I should stop lurking around the blog and start commenting for a change, now that you know I exist. Congratulations on SGU – it really has been awesome so far, and I can’t wait to see more!

    By the way, i absoutely adore your dogs – I forgot to mention that today!

    Take care 🙂

  22. awesome numbers! second season! soooo cool!
    wanting to see how Col. Young handles whatever he has. I have epilepsy, too and havent found the right dosage, so am having my ‘tics’ all the time, and even as i type (ugh). I know he shouldnt be in the military with it and if he doesn’t have his meds, well….so i’m rootin’ for him.

  23. Whilst I will have to wait a while to see Universe (I don’t have pay TV) I will be getting an up close dose of Atlantis thanks to the Armegeddon Expo in Melbourne this weekend. With Flanigan, Mamoa, McGillion andy Heyerdahl all in attendance.

    Hopefully some of the other blog regulars will be at this event and we can tell you all about it next week.

    Good luck with the new show – I am really enjoying reading about it and meeting the new characters.

  24. Hey Joe, gonna pop in real quick to drop some post-flu pre-bedtime commentary:

    1. Liked Air III a lot, and LOOOOOOOVED the last 10-15 minutes. Also loved Greer.

    2. Glad I’m not the only one who doesn’t like Big Bang Theory because of its Sitcom-ness.

    3. AWESOME RATINGS!! Hopefully it’s the beginning of an upward trend! Congratulations!

    Alright, bedtime!

  25. 1) Is anyone onboard the Destiny severely mentally unbalanced?

    2)Will there be any surprising relationships formed this season?

  26. What, no photos of lunch? Is this because I said your present would most likely be late? 🙁

    Cheers, Chev

    p.s. the Aussies are everywhere…it’s our secret pla..oops…..I’ve said too much already.

  27. @ for the love of Beckett – Glad I’m not the only one who says ‘li-berry’ (re: yesterday’s comment). I also say ‘cauw-fee’, ‘wood-er’, blawnde and Jag-wire, for coffee, water, blonde, and Jaguar, respectively. I think it’s the South Philly influence here in South Jersey, although there is a hunk of Jersey (the Pine Barrens) where everyone sounds like they’re from Georgia. Drive thorough certain parts, and you’ll swear you hear banjo music playing…


  28. CONGRATS MR. M!!

    Lets hope darkness gets a 1.9!!!! Wouldn’t that be awesome!! Heres to hoping!!!

    Thanks so much,
    Major D. Davis

  29. @Joe M
    Can you see if David will start doing readings for the blog to? Lol-(best Homer impersonation) Ohhhh pumpkin pie Blizzard. I know the dogs have there twitter(Their world domination thing going) but can you post some more pics here? Their just a day brightener! Thanks! MD

  30. Thanks for the book review, I’m glad I haven’t read it yet as I don’t think I could take that much of a SF/F overload right now. But it’s interesting, so it’s on the list.

    I didn’t much like Air 3 for various reasons but, onto the next ep. Pretty nice that ratings count dislikes as much as likes.

    From yesterday, add me to the Big Bang Theory-liker list. As I mentioned months ago, seasons 1 & 2 are a must, this season so far is meh. I don’t like sitcoms but I got into this show after being pestered left and right by people who said I HAD to see it, that this one was best at working sci-fi insider jokes into the sets and scripts and I would LOVE it, and I can spare 23 min out of my week for a good laugh.

  31. Thank you for the book review! The cover art is very enticing, too.

    Congratulations on the ratings. Is there a list of what countries SGU rated best in? Do they count the same way in all countries? Did the cast/crew have a big celebration?

    I’ve seen the pilot episode of SGU and then the desert episode. So does that mean I’m on part 2 or 3? Anyway, enjoyed the desert one a lot. The wind creature reminded me of the firefliy creatures on SGA (the one that Shep. fed them his ration bar). I always worry about the cast/crew when something goes wrong. So—Best wishes for a long run!

    Your blog is spreading. That is a good thing, yes?

    NZNeep: have you tried taking your pups temperature? Always a good first step, when in doubt.

    Deni: Praying for you in the times ahead. I’ve been there. Give Elway a hug for me.


  32. Coucou Joseph =) ça va ?

    Moi trés bien, Joyeux anniversaire à Brian! Je suis impatiente d’être au 16 =)…vous n’avez toujour pas reçu ma carte?

    Demain je commence ma rédaction en anglais sur vous =)

    Bonne journée!

  33. Tammy Dixon wrote: “Your blog is spreading. That is a good thing, yes?”

    I think there’s a cream for that…


    Speaking of pumpkin-y treats, ’tis the season for Tastykake pumpkin pies!

    Nothing to look at in the package, but oh my! They are delicious! Creamy smooth spiced pumpkin filling in a flaky crust. I have it on good authority that they are excellent warmed in the toaster over or microwave, and served with vanilla ice cream…but I rarely make it from the store to home without devouring the thing!

    Heh…My sister just gave me this great little wall plaque:

    “Inside me lives a thin person, but I keep her sedated with chocolate.”

    😆 LOVE it!


  34. Hi Joe!

    Sounds like this book selection is too bizarre for me. Been reading the Sookie Stackhouse books, lent by a friend. They aren’t spectacular literature, but fun, can’t-put-down reads. 🙂

    @ ytimynona – Yes, big Castle fan here! Did you see Castle and Esposito “feed the birds” in Monday’s ep? (Fool Me Once)

    @ deni – Healthy thoughts for Elway!



  35. @Mark

    Congrats on the bravery. Your a lucky man. I even envited Mr. M to lunch to prove my existence and to meat him in person but he turned it down, so you ARE A VERY LUCKY MAN!!!!!!!!!!

    Oh and Joe, congrats on the ratings!! I really got to stop reading depressing comments though. I mean on hulu, every other comment is negative, I mean it did get a little slow at times but not boring enough to only give SGU one more ep to prove itself. Lets just hope they decide to tune back in and lets just hope they’re negative people who just are being picky and really like the show. Well, if the ratings are any clue to reality, then I don’t think SGU is in trouble, I just hope everyone loves SGU as much as I do!!!!!! Oh and love the rush Greer scene, can’t stop re-watching it!!

    Thanks so much
    Major D. Davis

  36. ***Spoiler Alert for Air III (for those who have not seen it yet)!!!***
    Ok I know you say to just wait and watch the show to find out what happens but I can’t stop wondering: Will we ever find out why there is at least one Destiny shuttle missing? At the end of Air III when the alien ship detached from the Destiny there was clearly an empty shuttle pad…I seriously hope there are some ship logs or something that tells them who/what took the shuttle…because I’m sure the Ancients didn’t launch the Destiny and then say, “Oh snap! We forgot to load Shuttle 3!”. Thanks for taking the time to answer silly fan questions like mine!

  37. Just watching Air III. Awesome performances from Brian J Smith and David Blue. That was some litterbox you found to film in, kudos to whomever got the job of cleaning out the cat poop

  38. @ytimynona

    I watch Castle, even though it is pretty formulaic, just for Nathan. I thought Nathan did a superb job capturing the parenting angst after his daughter chewed him out. She is way too articulate for a real 15-year-old, though.

  39. @Das: Hugs back from both of us 🙂

    @Tammy: Thanks so much. Anybody that’s been where I am knows how difficult this is. Meanwhile, we’re going for a walk and Frosty Paws ice cream for all 🙂

    Hi Joe!

  40. The relationship between Greer and Eli is really interesting because it seems to break the “military guy hates the smart/nerdy guy” stereotype. Do these characters really respect each other as much as they seem to, or is it just my imagination? I hope those two continue to develop positively.

    Also, where did you find Jamil? He’s absolutely amazing!

  41. Evening Joe (ok, it’s evening here in Blighty)

    Firstly, I just watched Air III and want to give it a big thumbs up. Congratulations on great ratings by the way. Very much deserved.

    On the books you pictured there. I am with NZeep on Pratchett, although the three you have in that selection are all some of my favourites of his. Rankin’s too… oh Rankin how I love thee!
    Hmm, if you want to read “Rankin on acid” you might want to check out some of Tom Holt’s stuff. It’s even more out there!

    Lastly, but most importantly, I would appreciate if you could pass on birthday greetings to Mr Robert C Cooper for tomorrow and point him in the direction on this link, which comes courtesy of the men and ladies of the MWHS thread at Gateworld.

    (it’s ok, it’s clean, I promise!)

    Hmm, I hear there may be another birthday later in the week too?

  42. Open Your Eyes was an amazing read. I don’t have any questions for Paul, but I will say that it’s the kind of book that makes other writers ask that perennial annoying question: “Where do you get your ideas?” 🙂

  43. Question:- What was the awesome track playing at the end of the episode? I need to add it to my burgeoning collection

  44. I recently discovered The Dresden Files series. Since finishing the 11th book 2 weeks ago I’ve hardly picked up my Reader since. I’m going through withdrawals! I know there’s a few people on this blog that are fans of the series so can you recommend another series to help with my post-Dresden disorder? I started on the Codex series but finding it hard to get into.

    Joe, Ralph went for his first run around the backyard this morning. Rain and all. Took him a little bit to get used to using his leg in a different way, but the smile on his face made it seem as though he didn’t care. Got his stitches out on Sunday, all 47 of them. Thankfully the cellulitis cleared up that took hold last week. He’s torn about 4 inches where the bacteria from the possum claws just isn’t allowing the skin to knit back together, but other than that, he’s pretty much mended. He’s already tried to go after the possum again **head/desk**

  45. @ytimynona

    Castle is one of the few new shows from last season that I am continuing to watch.

    Okay, I’ll admit that I tuned into the first few eps purely for the “Fillion Factor”, but both Hubs and I really like the show. As someone mentioned earlier, a little formulaic (what cop show isn’t?), but entertaining and enjoyable nontheless.

  46. @ytimynona

    Actually, now that I think on it, Castle is the ONLY new show from last year that I am still watching …

  47. @JOE, the chestnuts have arrived from my sister’s farm, do you want me to send them??? Let me know!! @DAS, LOVE tastycake from my yeard of living in Philly, and i LOVE pumpkin, anything pumpkin, i will try to find them here in FL. @YTIMYNONA, Love castle, watch it all the time, but i am a BROWNCOAT from way back. ANOTHER GREAT sci-fi show that fox screwed up with!! @MADDOG316, We go to FT. Meyers alot, wonderful place, love sanibell too!! WE are going for lunch on the 31st, sorry if you can’t make it, next time- WELCOME to the FLORIDA club!! Sheryl

  48. Have just watched Air part 3 – it was good. The swirly sand confused me though – not sure what to make of it.

    The communication stones seem to be ‘too easy’ – how would you ever know if you were speaking to the person in front of you or some weirdo in Washington?

    Perhaps they should be put away somewhere safe and only used for emergencies.

    Could you get your mother to record a running commentary of the next episode of SGU please – it sounds like watching TV with my late father and that was usually a bit of a nightmare.

    Is Brie going to continue to stay with you – she is a sweet looking little hound. She will keep Lulu out of trouble!

    Dr Rush is a good character – likeable but not loveable.


  49. I missed Air III tonight on Sky 1, so I’m going to have to try and catch one of the repeats later in the week. I’m reserving judgement until I’ve seen a bit more of the show because I’m really not sure yet, despite being a Robert Carlyle fan. I’m finding his enunciation… weird to listen to, although I know it’s the only way North America could possibly understand a word he says without subtitles. I *want* to love SG:U so I’ll keep watching, despite the fact I would have given up on any other show if the first two episodes didn’t grab me. At this point, it’s really made me miss Atlantis more than anything.

    I would be interested to know what you think of Necrophenia, when you get around to it. I used to be a huge Robert Rankin fan, many moons ago, but I went off him. His early stuff is more my taste, so I haven’t read anything of his in a long time. Pratchett, on the other hand, gets better and better. Fifth Elephant is particularly good, but I must admit to my bias as the City Watch series is my favourite. If you haven’t read it, I recommend Jingo – sublime.

  50. Same thing happened with BSG. Fans were just bashing, bashing, bashing the show before it was even shown (quietly clears throat, me among them). The first episode of the miniseries premiered and the ratings came in. The second night was higher than the first night. I felt like that was going to happen with SGU. I don’t know exactly how much they increased; I just remember it was higher on night 2. I can’t remember if there was a night 3 and how that all worked itself out.

    I hope that this awesome news will see an announcement regarding a pickup for Season 2 sooner rather than later.

    A job well done by all.

  51. Thanks Sheryl
    ya I’m sorry but let me know when ya got another gathering and I’ll make plans, I don’t know alot people interested in Stargate and the things we all love to discussed with Joe.

  52. @ARTIC GODDESS, 3 1/2 weeks ’till LA and Cliff, can’t wait to meet ya. Sheryl

  53. Just watched “Air”. Brilliant. I cannot believe how awesome it was. When I heard the idea of the show “Stuck on a ship, far far away in the universe” well I thought “Oh no, Star Trek all over again”. I am amazed at how good you guys are. I didn’t think Star Trek once, while watching it.
    The score was breathtaking.
    I am so excited about this new show. My interest in the Stargate Universe has been totally renewed.
    I don’t have enough words to describe how impressed I am with the writing talent. The acting was real too and just brilliant work all over.

  54. The sex scene in the first part of Air. Woah. Totally unexpected and off-putting. I am just glad it was short. Wow, Stargate grew up. 😛

  55. Hers my prediction,: that David Blue will go far 🙂

    Great news indeed about Air pt 3 🙂

    Also absolutely loving the Daniel Jackson training video’s I personally would love to see the one about his rant on the Ancient non interference policy 😀

  56. Hi Joe,
    Wanted to say “well done” so far for Air I, II, and III. Oh yeah, good job to Rob and Brad, too. 🙂 Enjoying the fleshing out of the characters. So much to look forward to. Some of the comments have been a bit scary this past week or so: wanting everything to be revealed all at once. Good things come to those who wait; patience is a virtue, etc.

    Big Bang is a treat. Hits my funny bone just right. Now that I think about it, it’s actually the only sitcom I watch. Gotta mean something there. Completely opposite is my enjoyment of Criminal Minds. Dark but intriguing. Light dramedy is Castle. As someone said earlier it’s the Fillion Factor!

    Just noticed this on IMDB. Tomorrow (13th) is Chris Judge’s birthday. Mine, too. Same year and everything. Didn’t know I was in such esteemed company. Happy B-day Chris!

    Patty O
    Have a

  57. @Joe – thanks for the clarification about Greer – I’m not so convinced that he wasn’t attacking her – he looked mighty threatening and was stopped by someone else. Had anyone advanced on me in the threatening way he advanced on Wray, I’d be pretty sure I was being attacked. He may have very good reason to dislike her – clearly the reason for his behavior hasn’t been revealed to us – but he looked like he was attacking her. You may have realized that he wasn’t, but it wasn’t so clear to this viewer.

    Same thing with the theft of food – from the camera work and the overall darkness, that’s what it looked like to me (also to my sister). But I’ll take your word for it and leave this particular grievance behind.

    Gracious of me, no? 🙂

    @Das – good points about the body image issue and what women on tv have to put up with. It reminded me of an interview of Kate Hewlitt that I read. She’s an exception to the rail-thin cookie cutter female guest stars in Atlantis (and a great exception; I think she’s really great). Apparently, though, because she’s normal size, some folks think she’s fat. It’s really an annoyance. It really gripes me that men on tv can be normal people, but women have to be absurdly thin.

    Anyway, right now, I’m more intrigued by the way that SGU is developing than I am annoyed by the things I don’t like, and I have to say that I enjoyed people being obnoxious to Rush (who deserved it). The story in Air 3 made sense to me, too, so I’m still with it. It’s also clear to me now that it’s not BSG, thankfully. I guess we’ll see.

    It is, alas, not SG1, my first and always Stargate love. I’m still not over that, but at least I have ten seasons in constant reruns, not to mention dvds of all those seasons, and two dvd movies.


  58. Thanks Joe. You’ve introduced me to some pretty incredible authors, many of which I probably never would have discovered if it weren’t for this book club. Like Paul Jessup.

    Yes this book was a bit of a mind warp and while I was left confused by some parts, overall the experience was a very positive one. I found it interesting that the author cut his teeth on short stories before writing this, a novella. Which leads me to my questions:

    1. Did you set out to write a novel? A short story? Or did you just start writing and decide to “find” the end of your story as you were working on it?

    2. Some people have described your work as New Weird which is a description I haven’t really seen applied to science fiction. Do you think that’s accurate? And if so, were you influenced by any New Weird writers (like Jeff Vandermeer)?

    3. I think you’re a pretty audacious writer. Do you think that’s a pretty applicable description? A lot of your ideas are so way out there, was there ever a point while writing Open Your Eyes that you worried it might be inaccessible to many readers? Did you care?

    4. You’ve written mainly short stories, but Open Your Eyes was your first stab at the longer form. What’s next for you? More short stories? Another novella? Maybe even another novel? Or will it just be a matter of letting the idea lead you?

    Thanks for coming by to answer our questions. I’m definitely on the hunt for your short stories.

  59. I was swept up by Paul Jessup’s concise but extremely visual writing style. Even though some of the story elements weren’t as fleshed out as I might have liked it, the pacing was so quick that I didn’t have time to be confused. It was only after I’d finished the book that I was able to sit back and think that the questions came to me:

    1. Why did the ship double-cross Itsasu?

    2. Who released the virus meme on board the ship?

    3. Was their any deeper significance to the magazine model Hodei was obsessed with?

    4. What became of Ekhi?

    5. And, I thought I’d ask anyway: How did a supernova get her pregnant?

  60. I have some questions for the author:

    1. You’re writing style, especially in terms of plotting, seems very free-flowing. I’d like to know how you approached this story. Did you actually have an ending in mind or a detailed idea of how you were going to proceed or did the story take on a life of its own and write itself?

    2. How long did it take you to write Open Your Eyes? Was it one of those cases where you sat down to write a story and the more you wrote the more ideas came to you, leading you to make it novella-length?

    3. Since the novella was science fiction, I’m going to assume you like the genre. In your opinion, what can contemporary science fiction authors do to make their work more appealing to today’s audience? Or are you of the opinion that the writer should just write what he feels and if he finds an audience great but if he doesn’t find an audience then great too?

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