For more than twenty years I’ve contributed numerous essays and reviews to the unique German science fiction almanac Das Science Fiction Jahr. Started in the mid-eighties and initially edited by the late Wolfgang Jeschke at Heyne – at that time one of the world’s largest science fiction publishers -, the almac has by now found a new home with renowned small publisher Golkonda.
After a hiatus of several issues I’m again involved with the project. Das Science Fiction Jahr 2016, edited by Hannes Riffel and current Heyne sf editor Sascha Mamczak, has just been published and includes my second annual critical survey of the German science fiction short story scene. Reading several thousand pages for an article of just twelve pages is quite a challenge, to say the least, but I’ve just decided that I will continue the survey in the coming years. To also incorporate German horror and fantasy short fiction, however, (as I had initially planed with Hannes Riffel) has proved to be beyond my scope.
As all know who are still convinced that the 3d Internet world of Second Life can be an interesting and flexible medium for artistic expression, the platform has its tricky moments. Crashes of a whole sims during an event have become very rare but we’re reminded time and again that we’re still in a pioneering stage of virtual worlding and that an adventerous attitude is required to make use of it.
Being an enthusiast of electronic music, I’ve had a number of live music events over the years, streaming from my home studio into SL, on my humble amateur level but still always encouragingly received. Luckily enough, I’ve had little technical trouble most of the time – until last Sunday when during a live performance on occasion of Frantz Cattaneo’s and Asmita Duranjaya‘s exhibition opening of Virtual Beauties in Cyberspace my main computer crashed and I was faced with the notorious Blue Screen of Death, perhaps Microsoft’s most unique contribution to the modern world. And again I’ve learned something: as new features are introduced, Second Life’s hardware requirements are constantly on the rise. If you run a sequencer, streaming software and an SL client in full resolution on the same vintage dual core computer, you’re on the best way to invite entertaining major malfunctions.
Asmita has made a video of the event, combining my complete performance with impressions of the exhibition opening.(The sound level is a little low, so you may enjoy it most when you crank up the volume to a solid bone-shattering level.)
It’s no exaggeration that Nova, the German science fiction magazine edited by Olaf G. Hilscher and me, has earned some acclaim over the more than twelve years of its publication. A number of contributions have been awarded with the Kurd Laßwitz Preis, the most prestigious German science fiction award, named after a groundbraking German science fiction pioneer and, as a professionals’ award, similar in conception to the Nebula Award.
The 2016 prize round, however, was the first time that two works from the same Nova issue were awarded. “Was geschieht dem Licht am Ende des Tunnels?” (Nova #23) by Karsten Kruschel – in my humble opinion maybe the most interesting German science fiction writer currently producing (with due respect to young turk Frank Hebben) – was awarded as best German short story of the year 2015. Dirk Berger’s cover received the prize for the best science fiction artwork.
My latest fiction publication has been the short story “Das Netz der Geächteten” in the aptly titled anthology Gamer, edited by the stirring editorial team André Skora, Armin Rößler and Frank Hebben – who have done much in recent years to enrich sf story publication in Germany – and published by Begedia.
My story has gained some favorable comments in reviews and a discussion on www.scifinet.org
It’s already historic but for the sake of completeness it should also be noted on my homepage:
The 24th issue of the German science fiction magazine Nova, edited by Olaf G. Hilscher and me and hosted by small publisher Amrun, has recently been published. It includes new stories by Uwe Post, Frank Lauenroth, Sven Klöpping, Sami Salamé, Christian Endres, Marcus Hammerschmitt, Marc Späni, Tobias Reckermann, Norbert Stöbe, Olaf Kemmler and Fabian Tomaschek, as guest story a selection from a story cycle by Romanian author Gheorghe Sasarman, an essay on science fiction short films by Frederic Brake and several orbituaries on the late great writer and editor Wolfgang Jeschke, one of the founding fathers of science fiction publishing in Germany.
One of the highlights not only of the German Second Life scene is the annual cultural festival Festival der Liebe (Festival of Love), organized by my fellow writer Thorsten Küper aka Kueperpunk, his wife Kirsten Riehl aka Zauselina Rieko and the writer group Brennende Buchstaben, a two-day marathon of prose and poetry readings, comedy, exhibitions, performances and live music, showcasing the creativity and diversity of artistic activities in the world’s largest general-purpose online 3d world.
The complete program can be browsed here.
I’m honored to have again been invited to contribute half an hour of electronic ambient live music. I’m going to play on Sunday, October 9th at 21:30 CET / 12:30 SLT on the main stage of my World Culture Hub. The landing point is at
Ongoing struggles with some health problems have again kept me from updating my website for several months. But things have improved significantly now, I’m back at a number of projects and it’s time to catch up with some news.
After a hiatus of a few months my two projects in the 3d Internet world of Second Life have been relocated to the renowned artist community Space 4 Art. The new landing point for the World Culture Hub – a museum, event location and library for arts and cultures from all around the world – is here. The Turing Galaxy, dedicated to the history of computing and digital arts, with some excursions into science fiction, can be found here.
For closer information about both projects refer to my Second Life page.