I’ve heard from so many people how much they love the PBS series Downton Abbey. Which, for the longest time, I called “Downtown Abby” thinking the plot was about a girl named Abby who lived in downtown England. Much to my surprise, there was no girl named Abby anywhere to be found once I started watching the show. But just because there was no “Abby” and the story had nothing to do with going “downtown,” I still found myself sucked into the wonder and charm of early twentieth century England. Even if it is bat shit crazy.
I received my Kindle Fire as Christmas gift from my in-laws in 2011. As a person who reads quite a bit and lives in a one-bedroom apartment with my wife, it was a great gift, a real space-saver, especially since I had to give away maybe three quarters of my book collection when we moved from New Jersey to New York state for my job. Being able to fit a massive library in a single device was a godsend. And since it came from Amazon, I was able to use it to buy books directly from them. Initially, I went for their free stuff, that being public domain works, many of which were quite rewarding, like the first of Edgar Rice Burrows’ John Carter novels. I was a wee bit wary of buying too many books, since the device made buying them so easy, and many looked to cost about ten dollars each. That adds up after a while. So while looking around, I found a book that sounded interesting that would cost me a whopping $1.99. It was called Alice in Deadland, and it promised to be a story mixing zombies with the 19th century children’s classic Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
Hey, Alice was my favorite book as a kid, and I do enjoy the occasional zombie novel. What could go wrong? A lot, apparently. The book wasn’t terribly good. Mostly it was terrible. Not only does Amazon make it easier to buy books, it makes it easier for people to self-publish books. These books tend to be cheap, and, you generally get what you pay for.
Proof that streaming TV services are now on par with quality and prestige of feature films, Amazon recently signed FILM LEGEND Woody Allen to write and direct a comedy series to air on Amazon Prime. The crazy thing is, this is not signs of career failure. This is a prestige move these days.
Gaiman: “I’m finishing the very last short story of the next collection RIGHT NOW. Everything else has been written: the stories, the introduction, all that…It’s being published in February, and it will be called TRIGGER WARNING: Short Fictions and Disturbances.”