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Mythographers we Love: Stargate Command

In case you live under a rock, Stargate is a massive franchise that has heavily influenced quite a lot of media. It has also influenced a lot of our stories.

Stargate is resurrected after a few years of inactivity through an all-inclusive portal called Stargate Command. To kick things into gear they offer a brand new web-series called Stargate Origins, which is a prequel and an origin story of the discovery of the Stargate on Earth.

The show is well-made but low budget for now, with short episodes. You can watch 1-3 for free and sign up with a one-time fee for full access to everything, including all the movies and all the series before that.

By purchasing the All-Access Pass, fans will have access to exclusive content, including full episodes of the new STARGATE series, Stargate Origins, and fans will also have access to a library of STARGATE TV shows and movies, including SG-1, Atlantis, Universe, and all three movies, Stargate (1994), Stargate: The Ark of Truth (2008) and Stargate: Continuum (2008). All-Access Pass holders will be the first to view each episode of the new digital series Stargate Origins episodes.

Fans in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Canada, Australia and New Zealand are able to purchase the All-Access Pass

You can use Opera VPN app to bypass the country limitations, though you should expect it to affect streaming.

The All Access costs just $20. That fact alone makes us really appreciate this modern move. Instead of going for a subscription model, this all-you-can-binge website has it all, trivia, interviews, forums, video that complete the Stargate mythos and promises more to come. Unfortunately, this access seems to be finite:

All-Access starts on September 20, 2017 and ends on May 15, 2018. After May 15, 2018, the All-Access content will no longer be available through your All-Access Pass, but you will still be a member of the Stargate Command community, which will continue.

Read the FAQ

So, it seems they’ll shift to a subscription model or something similar in the future, and just want to get a rush of fans to the site with this offer. We’ll see.

We love Stargate because it fits with our storytelling: Alien beings with wondrous technology that are consumed by their god complex.

Don’t worry, we won’t suddenly turn it all into an Ancient Aliens in Greek Togas theme. But Stargate has influenced a lot of our tales.

  • Technology that has created mythological details. Like the sarcophagus that restores human bodies indefinitely, or the teleporters that seem to be a beam of light from the heavens.
  • Clever people solving problems in bizarre situations.
  • Women that are both feminine and witty, saving their friends as much as they end up saving them back.
  • Beings so consumed by megalomania that they think themselves as gods.
  • Followers blinded by the aforementioned gods’ powers that fanatically preach their teachings and kill in their name.

The series has become convoluted and messy, as all long-running sci-fi seems to have. Thankfully, io9 has compiled a guide that will get you up to speed or simply remind you of the important bits.

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Mythographers we Love: Ancient Blogger

One of the blogs that have popped up recently is that of the Ancient Blogger, a bloke from UK that writes about Greek and Roman mythology. He doesn’t just write, it seems there’s a wealth of pictures and videos and he shows us everything with a touch of humour.

This is him telling us about the aspis, a hoplite shield. Don’t know what that is? Well, click the video then, duh.

And since at the time of posting this, Valentine’s Day is dangerously imminent, I’d like to point you to a specific blog post about Unrequited Love in Ancient Greece.

It all starts with, and on, the island of Lefkada which sits in the Ionian Sea (west of mainland Greece). It’s here where you’ll find a particularly vertigo-inducing white rock which gave the island its old name, Leucas. Apollo had a temple here and if you know your Greek love gossip then you know Apollo is never far from a tragic date.

Lefkada (Leucas) in red

When Aphrodite was grieving for Adonis it was suggested to her by Apollo that she jump off the white rock to cure her feelings. Whether this was sage advice or the sort of thing which siblings do to each other is unclear but as Aphrodite emerged from the sea she was indeed cured.

The famous Sappho apparently jumped from here to cure herself of love, but died, which isn’t exactly surprising. Strabo contends that the first mortal to attempt the feat wasn’t Sappho (as is sometimes stated) but Cephalus who had fallen for Pteralas (10.2.9). Whether Cephalus survived isn’t known but we do have a list of those who attempted and (mostly) failed thanks to a Greek grammarian called Conon who lived around the time of Augustus.

Keep on reading.

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Sample Chapter: Girl Gone Nova

Image Credit Vitaliy Raskalov/Vadim Mahorov/Marat Dupri. Check out their daring and illegal climb atop the pyramid.

Sample Chapter

Guillermo rubbed his temples. Hard.
“You can’t just take ‘a pyramid.’”
Kyveli scoffed. “Why not? You have three of them.”
Guillermo breathed in deep. It was surprisingly chilly for being in a desert. “Because… It is an ancient monument to a Pharaoh, a tomb, actually. It has stood there for about three thousand years.”
The Teddy Bear held up a ridiculously tall parasol that only covered her from the sun, leaving him out to get a tan.
Kyveli tilted her head. “A Pharaoh?”
“Yes. Royalty. Like you, actually. You wouldn’t want someone to show up after eons and just pick up your tomb as if it was a vacation souvenir now, would you?”
She opened her pretty mouth to speak.
“Yes,” he interrupted. “I know, there won’t be a tomb left. There won’t even be a solar system left. But you know what I mean.”
Kyveli turned back to the magnificent view from atop the pyramid. Her eyes glinted as they darted around. Translucent images appeared in her field of view, and Guillermo was shocked to realise that she was actually looking up information on the Pharaohs. The ship’s Mind digested the volumes of data and gave her the highlights that it knew she’d like.
He let her take it all in.
He stood in silence, watching her. How would the Ancient Egyptians react to a visit from her? He had no doubt in his mind that she’d fit in nicely right next to Nefertiti and Cleopatra. Delicate features, thin fingers, red skin like velvet. Throw in one of those characteristic Egyptian crowns that frame the entire head and she’s a Queen now.
Worshipped by trillions.
The mind doesn’t just boggle, it shuts down completely. Guillermo tried to imagine what that actually meant. And he was no novice either, he had stood next to kings as they addressed crowds beneath them.
He spun around to watch the desert. Trillions of souls. What had they called them? Panhuman species, variations on the same theme and archetype of two hands, two feet, standing upright, across the stars. Like grains of sand.
Grains of sand at her feet.
Yes, that was the only analogy Guillermo’s brain could come up with to make the comparison.
He snorted at his thoughts. He was under the mistaken impression that the humans of today seemed somehow more advanced than the Egyptians were. But the difference of two thousand years of science was negligible next to the Ekrignontes. He squinted up at the shiny orb in the sky that called itself a silly name and had a silly Teddy Bear avatar and had the power to slice Jupiter up like an orange.
Humans were just playing with rocks, stacking them pretty.
Kyveli gestured and dismissed the AR data.
He smiled back at her.
“So I can’t take one? Not even the little one?” She pointed hesitantly at the smaller pyramid of the three and gave him the puppy eyes.
To force himself away from the urge to please her was like scratching a sunburn.
“No.”

Check out Girl Gone Nova

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Mythographers we Love: Netflix

Netflix’s marketing has been a blast. From Bright’s Orc auditions, to blending reality with Black Mirror episodes, to the upcoming Altered Carbon series with a real booth at CES promoting the fictional company’s services, they’re spinning their stories and firmly lodging them into everyone’s minds.

Netflix is doing exactly what we predict future corporations will do, meaning blend their own narrative into the real world and in the end it will become indistinguishable from reality. Of course, these are all PR stunts and viral tricks for now, but it won’t be long before these are used as real-world propaganda by more nefarious corps.

Happy New Year with Black Mirror

Orcs auditioning for Bright sequel

Psychasec Booth at CES

Image credit: Mat Smith at Engadget

Read the article.

When they ventured inside, an army of slightly too pretty attendants, dressed-in-white offered vague sci-fi responses to questions (“It’s about transferring your conscious to a new, better body”), while screens all around scrolled through the benefits of replacing your body for a new (sexy, stronger, smarter) model. The aforementioned staff clutched tablets to take email addresses with promises of more information come February 2nd. Plenty took the bait, genuinely curious of where this company was based and whether this was all even possible.

The twist, if you can call it that, happens once you turn a corner, and you’re confronted with a vacuum-sealed human. This is another mannequin, although with some carefully-placed condensation inside the bag, made it rather unsettling. Naturally, I had to poke the “person” in a bag. Morbid fascination.

Needless to say that, at this point we frickin’ love Netflix.

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Binge-Worthy Reads: Feed – A Dystopian Collision With Reality TV

Start reading the Fooko series today for free. Feed 1 is a dystopian collision with reality TV. Don’t miss it!

I Wanna Get Dystopian

Seven years after the nanocameras switched on and the feeds began, nanoengineer Samuel Ramone becomes the subject of an addictive reality feed. As his heart sinks further into the crush he’s been nursing, his popularity rises. He is a married man, after all.

When it comes to the new world of the feeds, Enforcers are nothing but a rumor. But the Editors . . . they’re real. With every human monitored endlessly, Ramone hasn’t had anything to fear in a long time, except seeing himself in a feed. Or worse, seeing his wife in one. With another man.

That’s why he’s never looked. If you can’t see something, it’s not there.

But when Ramone finally plans a way to hide from the unceasing surveillance–disguised as entertainment, monitored and enhanced by those all-seeing Editors–he learns that his viewership is endangering his attempts escape the feeds, and soon the people he loves most.

Now he is hunted by an Enforcer. Running is pointless. But staying in one place means learning the rumors aren’t just rumors.

If you enjoy 1984, Black Mirror, and other dystopians about surveillance, Feed 1 is right for you.

Start reading Feed book 1 for free on Amazon

“Ms Grotepas has written a novel that has made me care about characters again. The intriguing subject and a look into the not so distant future are at once frightening and believable.” — Rita Kaye, Amazon reviewer

 

“This book is really, really good. It does not bog itself down trying to explain the science behind everything but is so descriptive in its simplicity that you don’t notice right away. It feels like a mix of Harry Harrison and Robert Heinlein.” — Joshua Allen, Goodreads reviewer

 

“Each of the characters is unique and interesting in their own way and watching the interaction and development of relationships between the characters kept me turning the pages.” — William Hall, Amazon reviewer

 

“This book drew me in immediately . . . Was so engrossed, I immediately ordered Feed 2 – at 11:15 PM – ready to read all night!” — Passing Pilgrim, Amazon reviewer

 

“The writing is polished, and the characters well developed. The world the author has created is believable and terrifying at the same time.” — Marcus, Amazon reviewer

 

“Not that far from the world we live in now with reality TV the opioid for the masses. She created great characters with intense passions and frustrations. Four stars for this one. Give me more.” — Dolly, Goodreads reviewer

 

I Wanna Read Feed for Free on Amazon

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Binge-Worthy Reads: The Coilhunter Trilogy, a Sci-Fi Western

Welcome to the Wild North, a desolate wasteland where criminals go to hide—if they can outlast the drought and the dangers of the desert. Or the dangers of something else.


Meet Nox, the Coilhunter. A mechanic and toymaker by trade, a bounty hunter by circumstance. He isn’t in it for the money. He’s in it for justice, and there’s a lot of justice that needs to be paid.

Between each kill, he’s looking for someone who has kept out of his crosshairs for quite a while—the person who murdered his wife and children. The trail has long gone cold, but there are changes happening, the kind of changes that uncover footprints and spent bullet casings.

Plagued by nightmares, he’s made himself into a living one, the kind the criminals and conmen fear.

So, welcome, fair folk, to the Wild North. If the land doesn’t get you, the Coilhunter will.

Dustrunner on Preorder

The third book, Dustrunner, is on preorder and releases on Feb 28. Get it now for 99 cents only.

Nox is a wanted man.

While searching for a criminal, the fabled Coilhunter wanders into a tribal village massacre. He didn’t do it, but that doesn’t matter. He’s the only one there, the clues point to him, and he’s made a lot of enemies over the years. Many would happily see the tables turned.

Get the Coilhunter Trilogy on Amazon
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Binge-Worthy Reads: Start With Star Nomad, Then Fall for the Empire

If you want to read a long series of space opera goodness, look no further than Lindsay Buroker’s Fallen Empire series.

You can start reading Star Nomad right now for free on Amazon.

The series is insanely deep and beloved by a ton of fans. It has also kicked-off a spin-off, so we’ll need Lindsay’s list of titles to keep track of it all.

Fallen Empire

Remnants — A short story that takes place 2-3 years before Star Nomad. It’s the adventure where Alisa and Mica first meet, and it’s currently only available in the You Are Here SF/F anthology.

Last Command — A novella that takes place 6 months before Star Nomad. It’s from Leonidas’s point of view and shows him carrying out his last mission before the fall of the empire. It’s currently available as a free bonus to those who sign up for the Fallen Empire newsletter.

Star Nomad — The first book and where the main adventure begins.

Saranth Three — A short story that takes place between Star Nomad and Book 2, Honor’s Flight. It’s currently a bonus for newsletter subscribers.

Honor’s Flight — Book 2 in the series

Starfall Station — A short story from Leonidas’s point of view. It takes place between Book 2 and Book 3. It’s currently available through the free Star Rebels anthology. (This is available on KoboApple, and Barnes & Noble, as well as Amazon.)

Starseers — Book 3

Relic of Sorrows — Book 4

Cleon Moon — Book 5

Arkadian Skies — Book 6

Perilous Hunt — Book 7

End Game — Book 8

Hope Springs — A honeymoon adventure that takes place after Book 8. It’s currently available in the Beyond the Stars: New Worlds, New Suns anthology.

Cyborg Legacy — This is a stand-alone novel that takes place a few years after the main series. It brings in a new hero, Jasim, but Leonidas also returns to go on the adventure.

Sky Full of Stars (Fallen Empire spinoff series)

A Sky Full of Stars takes place ten years after the events in Fallen Empire, with the next generation (Jelena, Thor, and Erick Ostberg) coming to the forefront for adventures of their own.

The Rogue Prince — Book 1

Angle of Truth — Book 2

Stolen Legacy — Book 3 (Upcoming Title)

So, grab the freebie series starters and get convinced that this journey is worth taking.

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Mythographers we Love: Greek Myth Comix

This is one of the educational ones. Greek Myth Comix has Greek mythology in stick-figure format, probably influenced by XKCD.

These can be used to teach kids of all ages about certain mythological figures or ancient Greek concepts, like Kudos or the Homeric Hero.

I especially like the Moirai and the Muses poster, I printed these out and have them on my board for reference.

Make sure you visit their store for neat merchandise or large posters.

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Get the Smashwords End of the Year Sale

Smashwords has a wide range of books on sale for Dec 15 to Jan 1.

You can browse the sale here.

Or you can find our own titles on sale here.

Possible coupon codes are:

EY100
(100% off 2017-12-25 thru 2018-01-01)

SEY75
(75% off 2017-12-25 thru 2018-01-01)

SEY50
(50% off 2017-12-25 thru 2018-01-01)

SEY25
(25% off 2017-12-25 thru 2018-01-01)

 

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Mythographers we Love: String Demons

What if Lady Gaga attended a Greek country fair? What if a Greek folk song steps into the realm of heavy metal?

You’d get String Demons, and their new album Rise of Strings.

Konstantinos and Lydia Boudounis are doing their own thing and remixing from all over the soundscape.

You can get their album from all major services, iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify, Google Play, Deezer, Tidal:

Get the Rise of Strings Album

I especially like their “Pirates” music piece. It’s not on the album but you can listen to it on Youtube:

String Demons Website

 

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Mythographers We Love: Eros and Psyche Project

There’s a very nice comic retelling of the Eros and Psyche myth, by two Greek girls, Myrto Gkiouli and Eirini Skoura.

It was a kickstarted project that got a lot of attention from fans. And it was well deserved, the design is lovely and very emotive.

Get Eros and Psyche in EnglishGet Eros and Psyche in Greek

You can find them on their page on Facebook, for orders etc.

Here’s a juicy taste of the story:

“A light breeze blew in from the window and put out the lamp’s flame, plunging the room in darkness. Using her surprise to his advantage, Eros seized the opportunity and slipped into bed next to her. Her eyes widened in shock; someone was in her bed. That was it, then; time to meet her mysterious husband. She was petrified; from fear or anticipation, she didn’t know.”

Some of the concept art and other mythographies

There’s a limited time promotion running for each ebook order with an added collection of short stories.

Here it is in their own words:

It’s been 2 years since the launch of our campaign, so, in order to celebrate the occasion, starting today, and for the following month, anyone who buys the e-book (at a special price too!), will be getting a bonus pdf with a collection of short stories/outtakes revolving around the myth! (make sure you read the introduction of that thing as well, it’s fun!)

Get Eros and Psyche in EnglishGet Eros and Psyche in Greek

 

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100 Sci-Fi and Fantasy Books to Read in a Lifetime

Amazon has a list of the year’s best books. What we care about is the Sci-fi list, so here it is:

Click to see the list on Amazon

I’ve already bought Oathbringer and Artemis.

Of the rest, Persepolis Rising is definitely on my list. David Wong’s “What the Hell Did I Just Read” is also on there, I loved the last book.

Ann Leckie has no chance of ever getting my time, ever again.

The Book of Dust is getting passed around all the time in my social media echo chamber, so I’ll give it a shot.

What else should I add to my TBR pile?