Looking Back at the Future

Inside the head of science fiction writer and critic Derek Austin Johnson.

"Earth may very well be the strangest planet in all the universe…" Robert Silverberg


"Earth may very well be the strangest planet in all the universe…" Robert Silverberg

… when you’re a writer, there’s no one coming in at the end of the day and saying, ‘Wow that’s a great passage you just wrote. Boy, that’s wonderful.’

—Donna Tartt on the unexpected success of her first novel after writing in solitude for so long (an average of a decade spent writing per book). (via oliveryeh)

(Source: youtube.com, via wordpainting)

How many times have people used a pen or paintbrush because they couldn’t pull the trigger?

—Virginia Woolf (via ulvkvinne)

(Source: stxxz.us, via booklover)


Die Hard is the best Christmas movie.

Galaxy Quest is the best Star Trek movie.

The thing both movies have in common:


(via ksmithsf)


Puzzlewood Magical Forest — The Real Middle Earth

Puzzlewood is a unique and enchanting place, located in the beautiful and historic Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire, England. There is more than a mile of meandering pathways through Puzzlewood and over 14 acres of ancient woodland. It has an atmosphere quite unlike any other wood. The magical forest is one of the most stunning in the world and it’s easy to see why it’s been used as a filming location for Merlin and Dr. Who. It is no wonder that JRR Tolkien is reputed to have taken his inspiration for the fabled forests of Middle Earth from Puzzlewood. 

In Puzzlewood you will find strange rock formations, secret caves and ancient trees. The geological features here are known locally as scowles. The scowles originated through the erosion of natural underground cave systems formed in limestone many millions of years ago. Uplift and erosion caused the cave system to become exposed at the surface. This was then exploited by Iron Age settlers through to Roman times for the extraction of iron ore.

Evidence of Roman occupation of the area is supported by the discovery of a hoard of over 3,000 Roman coins from the 3rd Century which were found in the scowles of Puzzlewood. Once the Romans left, nature reclaimed the old workings with moss and trees, to create the unique landscape. The historical use soon became forgotten, and the folklore of “Puzzlewood” began.

In the early 1800s, a local landowner laid down a mile of pathways which meandered through the trees and gulleys to open up this ancient forest originally for the amusement of his friends and children. In the early 1900s, Puzzlewood opened to the public. Since then it is has remained essentially unchanged with the same stunning pathways and bridges as in earlier times, but with the addition of a variety of animals and visitor facilities.

source 1, 2

(via ksmithsf)


A new set for an apocalypse movie? 
The riots in Kiev. This is happening right now.

Those breathtaking pictures were taken by the young and usually happy tumblarian girl RedMisa during her volunteer work at Kiev.

"I never thought that I would cry for my native country. I’m not particularly patriotic, I do not like politics, large gatherings of people, meetings and inspirational slogans. but I still go to the central street of Kyiv almost every day, doing volunteer work, doing all I can to help. two months of no change for the better, things were getting worse and worse. but when the killings began, catching the protesters in the streets and beating them up…that was the last straw for me. I do not know what to expect next."

- RedMisa, http://redmisa.tumblr.com/

Ukraine probably won’t have access to the internet soon. Read more about it here.

Ask Culture and Guess Culture

“One of my wife’s distant friends has attempted to invite herself to stay with us, again,” writes the exasperated owner of a prime 2 bedroom apartment in New York City in this Ask MetaFilter question. “She did this last March, and we used the excuse of me starting a new job and needing to do x,…