Archive | July, 2012

Watch Ned Beauman at arcfinity.org

23 Jul

Ned Beauman talks to Arc’s editor Simon Ings about The Teleportation Accident, a genre-splitting novel that, unlike his dark debut Boxer Beetle, wears its comic impulses on its sleeve. When culpably naive Weimer emigre Anton Loeser stumbles into the Los Angeles dreamtime in the late 1930s, he triggers a series of world-shattering incidents, none of which involve him getting laid.

Watch M John Harrison exploring Empty Space

16 Jul

Harrison, whose story In Autotelia appeared in the inaugural issue of Arc, has completed his Light trilogy. In his first interview for Arc, he reveals his love of science, takes a wry view of the human project, and looks back on his ten-year effort to give science fiction its long-overdue Saturday night.

Harrison’s story for Arc 1.1 is the subject of an @arcfinity video at http://youtu.be/F9G3rtu3ayM. He maintains a blog at http://ambientehotel.wordpress.com/

Watch Bruce Sterling and Liam Young invent the city of the future

9 Jul

On June 16, urbanist and part-time terror suspect Liam Young brought together an ensemble of thinkers, writers and artists to forge the collaborative blueprint for a future city. Arc’s editor Simon Ings went along to rub shoulders with, among others, Warren Ellis, Rachel Armstrong and Bruce Sterling, and to film this wrap-up discussion between Sterling and Young.

Read Bruce Sterling’s anatomy of futurism in Arc 1.1, out now for tablets, phones and screens.

Under Tomorrow’s Sky (http://undertomorrowssky.com) continues at MU art space, Eindhoven, with a first public exhibition from August 10, and further manifestations at the Lisbon Architecture Triennale in 2013.

Liam tweets as @liam_young and maintains a website at http://www.tomorrowsthoughtstoday.com

Inside the House of Rumour: watch Jake Arnott’s take on science fiction, history and “realism”

6 Jul

In June 2012 novelist Jake Arnott talked to Arc’s editor Simon Ings about his novel The House of Rumour, an esoteric and sometimes disturbing reimagining of science fiction’s Golden Age.

Jake, best known for period thrillers The Long Firm and He Kills Coppers (both made into widely praised TV dramas), hadn’t intended to write such a large book, “but then I went on holiday and read Roberto Bolaño’s 2666. Big mistake.”

Some mistake: Mark Lawson in the Guardian called The House of Rumour “The Da Vinci Code rewritten by an author with the gifts of characterisation, wit and literacy.”

For Jake, engaging with science fiction and the occult is simply a new kind of realism. “I kept coming across strange coincidences. My last book was about Aleister Crowley. I also came across this strange notion of a British Intelligence plot to lure Hitler’s deputy Rudolf Hess to Scotland. There’s also this idea of quantum theory as being all about uncertainty, that one event can appear to be a multiplicity of events depending how it’s observed. For a writer, that’s important: we are the observer.”

Liz Jensen: Arc’s “Uninvited” guest

2 Jul

The best-selling novelist dropped into Arc’s offices to discuss her new book The Uninvited, an accessible and very frightening vision of ecological and political crisis.

It’s structured like a ghost story, written as a thriller: Deborah Moggach once puffed Jensen’s work by saying that she was “a true original – beholden to nobody”, which is as good a summation of this book as you could wish for. Jensen, though, is keen to acknowledge at least one forebear: “I thought about John Wyndham a lot,” she says, “and the ways he found to tell a complex, global story from a single, intimate point of view.”

The result is chilling. Across the world, children are killing their families. The experts say it’s an isolated incident – but they’re wrong.