Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Scrying the Fantastic - An Introduction

Scrying the Fantastic is a new initiative, brought to you by a international team of bloggers. The idea was conceived from the frustration of not having an existing resource to discover the forthcoming releases in the field of speculative fiction. We hope that you will be able to utilise this database of posts, sorted by publisher, month and year, using the tags. If you have any questions or you want to nudge us in the direction of publishers we might have neglected, please do email us at scryingthefantastic[at]gmail[dot]com.

You might notice that we have neglected to link the book titles through to a book purchasing site. This was a very conscious decision on our part: we are a non-profit-making organisation so have no need to affiliate for this reason; we also didn't like the idea of just linking with one company; and, lastly, we assume that our visitors will have their preferred location for buying books. We're just here to point you in the right direction to find books you might have missed or didn't realise were being released!

We're working closely with a number of publishers to bring you the most up-to-date information we possibly can, but we hope you realise that the further away publication date is, the less likely a book will be released exactly when stated. The yearly posts for each publisher are there more as a guide to what books might be released in 2010 - rely more on the monthly posts by publication for correct information.

Without further ado, please let me introduce the members contributing to Scrying the Fantastic:

1) First up is me - being Amanda from Floor to Ceiling Books. I wondered about the possibility of a resource like this, and floated the idea past a number of other bloggers, surprised when six jumped straight on board. I have spent a great deal of time in the past on publisher sites and websites where you can purchase books, and found it extremely difficult to come up with a list of forthcoming speculative fiction, and so Scrying the Fantastic stemmed from my fruitless quests. I am hoping that it will prove useful but I am very willing to hear new ideas or suggestions for changes from those who pop over to visit!

2) Second is Harry, diabolical mind behind Temple Library Reviews. He has this to say: 'Oh, boy, where to start with Scrying for the Fantastic. In short, what I hope to achieve is to establish a unified data base, dedicated solely to index upcoming releases from reputable and well known SFF imprints. As a book addict, I want to experience as much as possible from today's fiction and most of the time I fail to inform myself what is to hit the shelves or has hit the shelves recently. I want to be in the know; a need, which I believe is shared by many. Clicking one link instead of tens and sometimes even hundreds is convenient. Right now we are launching with a moderate number of publishers represented, but I envision Scrying the Fantastic to expand, so that we can cover US publishers and imprints located in Australia, for instance. Of course, along with the list of publishers, I am hoping for multiplying our team of contributors, until Scrying the Fantastic becomes a worldwide network. This is far away, but we will definitely work towards such best case scenario.'

3) Third is Adele from Un:bound, and she says (in a short but very sweet manner): 'As a blogger I am constantly looking up cover shots or release dates (particularly when US reviews start to come out) so when I was asked to become part of this genre fiction resource I jumped at it. I am delighted to be part of such a great team of bloggers.'

4) Let me introduce you to Niall, from The Speculative Scotsman: 'I've long wondered why a resource such as Scrying the Fantastic doesn't already exist. I mean, this is the internet; there are a hundred sites competing for our attention in every other area, so why not this one? From everything I've heard from those I've spoken to about the project - not to mention all the publishers that have jumped on board the moment we mentioned Scrying the Fantastic to them - it's evidently not for a lack of interest. And perhaps it's fortuitous that there isn't already a UK-centric resource for details of forthcoming speculative fiction, because hey, that means I get to be a part of the very thing I've hungered so long for! I couldn't be happier than to play some part in this exciting joint venture, not least because of the prestige of the veritable Justice League of bloggers working together to make Scrying the Fantastic a reality. And it's only going to go from strength to strength. Give us a little time to get the engines firing and I don't doubt we'll be scrying the fantastic the whole world over before you know it. Long story short: if you've ever tired of trolling Amazon or The Book Depository in search of a good new book to excite your literary appetite, you've come to the perfect place, where we do all the trolling so you don't have to! A very warm welcome to everyone who makes Scrying the Fantastic one of their regular resources... I hope you'll find your time here well spent.'

5) Fifth is Mark, the Walker of Worlds: 'When Amanda approached me with the idea of doing a collaborative resource with all upcoming book releases in the speculative fiction genres I thought it was a great idea - after all, bringing together information from a variety of sources in one central location is just the ticket for any book lover to see what's coming up. I've been doing a monthly post on my blog, Walker of Worlds, since August 2008 and have been slowly expanding to include as much information as possible, so I know first-hand how frustrating it can be to find accurate information on what books are due out from SFF publishers. Scrying the Fantastic will hopefully become the place to come for forthcoming book release information and I am so psyched about this project and hope everyone that visits also feels the same way!'

6) Welcome our American correspondent - Bryce, owner of Seak's Stamp of Approval: 'When I found out what a great group of people was involved in this endeavor, I couldn't help but be excited to join in. I like to mention the new releases I'm excited for, but I always know I'm missing something. With publishers and bloggers working together its win win all the way and Scrying the Fantastic makes that possible with all the info you need in one handy place. As the only American here, I just hope everyone can stand my accent... :)'

7) Last, but by no means least, we have Jason, otherwise known as Kamvision: 'When Amanda first mentioned this concept to me, I thought, wow! What a brilliant idea. Then I thought, damn! That's a lot of work. I think I was right on both counts. The idea is great, because it allows everyone: bloggers, fans, buyers, publishers and sellers, to see at a glance what genre releases are forthcoming. We hope to build a resource that is comprehensive, accurate, intuitive and convenient. To produce such a resource also requires a fair bit of work, but we've been very fortunate to have had a great response from all the publishers we've approached, and they have helped to make out task much simpler - thank you! This is just the beginning, and in time I hope that we are able to make this resource the premier destination for anyone seeking book release information across the Speculative Fiction genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Horror, and Young Adult as well. I'm delighted to be part of the Scrying team, and such a great bunch of bloggers and book nuts. As the others have said, please do let us know what works and what doesn't. These are early days and we're keen to hear your feedback. I always wanted to be part of a supergroup, kinda like Emerson, Lake & Palmer or Audioslave, cheers Amanda for the opportunity :)'

Our publishing schedule will involve going live with the forthcoming month's title on the 15th each month (except for the April posts, which you can find here tomorrow! Do check back!). This means on 15th April you will be able to see here the books available to buy in May, and so on through the year.

And I believe that is everything - except to say that we will welcome your comments and we actively encourage you to publicise this resource across the Internet!


ediFanoB said...

I think it is a good idea and I look forward to the first post.

I would like to recommend you a site which I use for the described purpose. Fantastic Fiction takes care on UK releases.
And over the years the built up a great database.

Good luck!

By the way which time zone do you follow?

Be aware of jokes on upcoming April Fool's Day
Be sure I come back tomorrow and read your first post.

Murf61 said...

Great idea guys! Having one resource where we can find out what releases are due within the next month across the breadth of the SFF genre is a very useful reference point.

Good luck with the venture and I look forward to reading more from you!

Book Chick City said...

Great idea! Looking forward to having one place to go to find more books to buy!

Good luck with the blog guys! :)

Larry said...

Great stuff!
And yea ediFanoB is right about Fantastic Fiction, I use that site a lot (altho there are quite a few errors there!)
Good luck with the venture!

ediFanoB said...

Larry, you're right. There are some errors within Fantastic fiction.

Larry said...

Yes among other errors it lists Arthur C Clarke's novel The Songs of Distant Earth as a collection of stories!

Seak (Bryce L.) said...

@ediFanoB and Larry - Fantastic Fiction definitely came to mind at first, but we thought the same as you. There are so many mistakes, we wanted to see if we could do better. :)

@Murf and BCC - Thanks, we want to be as useful as possible.

Patrick said...

Very interesting idea. I would personally like a little bit more of a future vision to the Forthcoming Books section in Locus Magazines.

If there was one site I could go to to find the latest status on projects from a number of authors, I would love it.

But I'm atypical anyway...
I'll be reading

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