Friday, March 20, 2009

Weird Tales & Hugo are most definitely sitting in a tree...

For the first time evah Weird Tales has been nominated for a Hugo! GO TEAM!

Now all that's left is for the people who can vote to go ahead and vote. Vote! If you don't agree with who wins and haven't voted, then you lose all rights to whinge about it. Can you imagine a worse fate? No, you can't. So vote! Vote for what you love and what you care about. And if you don't care or love, well your heart is a dessicated flea, you can vote on my behalf instead. Weird Tales all the way, baby.

I'm half way through the current issue, and am loving it. It's a very, very strong issue, immensely delicious. Stories I've read appear in it, so for the first time, I feel like I've almost earned having my name in the staff section. It'll also give you an idea of what timescale the publishing industry moves to, as I read these stories over a year ago.

I have one (1) copy spare. Just one. So, if this fine example of printed reading material was in a safe stored on a Russian nuclear submarine which has been sunk and is lying, airtight, at the bottom of the ocean, how would you go about securing possession it? Go on, grave robbers and treasure hunters and crazy people, get inventive! Bonus points for taking out your competitors. Shall pick a winner in a week.


  1. Anonymous20/3/09 18:21

    I'm a particularly lazy treasure hunter, so I would go plant fake information in the computers of whichever Russian agency has the resources to retrieve it, telling them that an elite team of terrorists has discovered that there's one forgotten nuclear missile still on board this submarine (which their records would confirm), and they're trying to get their hands on it.
    The response from this agency should take care of all my competitors (who'd be seen as the terrorists in question).

    Once the submarine had been retrieved, and the forgotten missile been found to be curiously absent, I would plant some other instructions to have the submarine shuffled off to a random base somewhere and forgotten about (taking great care that any competitors still alive wouldn't be able to find out about the location of this base).

    Since I lack skills in cracking safes, I would then arrange for someone to board the submarine and for the safe to be put onto an airplane to the nearest American airport (on the last flight of the day, with a connection to be made the next day). At that airport I would have taken a job as a cleaner, having pulled the midnight shift.
    Since the TSA couldn't scan inside the safe (on account of the reinforced metal), they would've gone on to use brute force to open it. Not finding anything of obvious terrorist significance inside, they'd put the safe back into the queue for onward transport with one of their cutesy stickers informing the owner that they'd searched through the safe. I would then simply walk by this safe during my rounds and retrieve the printed materials in question (am expecting that I wouldn't even have to buy off the regular criminal organization working the airport in question, as Weird Tales is unlikely to feature amongst their common targets).

  2. My squid will have spirited the safe to the surface, cracked the combination, and sealed the magazine in mylar and Tyvek while your Russians are still trying to disentangle their rescue subs from their hydrophones.

  3. Anonymous20/3/09 20:56

    hey--is that my squid? jv

  4. Probably! They're fickle.

  5. Anonymous22/3/09 06:10

    *Shakes head in awe*. Clearly Aanimal has done this before, many times.

  6. Anonymous25/3/09 20:46

    Is Weird Tales already aware of Scalzi's voter packet thing? I assume so, but just in case:

    *munches on baked squid*

  7. ArthurMiller@OUSalesperson28/3/09 09:37

    My first step would be to take out an enormous black market loan ‘cos 10 grand just ain’t gonna cut it. Then I’d search the yellow pages for the cheapest evil genius going and hire him to equip me with a pod of cyborg sperm whales to deploy around the Russian sub. When in place they’d turn the squid into calamari rings and store them in their nuclear powered fridges.

    At this point I’d place an anonymous call to Sea Shepherd using a stolen mobile and a vocorder. With the Steve Irwin in the area any recovery teams are stymied unless they have a burning desire to play chicken.

    Of course my own recovery team would already have begin operations. Given the minimal funds remaining from my previous hiring they’d the cheapest diving/explosives experts around: A couple of ex navy SEALS with rap sheets longer than their service records. Nonetheless they’d do the job with a minimum of fuss and a maximum of liquid courage, particularly if I told them that they’re recovering a large amount of street ready cocaine.

    Naturally they would try to backstab me but another anonymous call to the Federal police would handle that. If the SEALS saw the helicopter they’d dump the goods with the hope of retrieving them later but the last thing they saw before being handcuffed would be a sperm whale swallowing the safe.

    Then it would just be a simple matter of collecting the safe (opened by the cyborg whales) and turning myself into the police so I can read Weird Tales in safety while my mother sells the calamari to provide the funds to placate the black market dealer, the ex-navy SEALS and the Russian navy.

  8. ...and only then, when you turned the first page of Weird Tales to see nothing but a blank page, would you realize that you made a mistake when you "searched the yellow pages" by doing this online.

    The yellow pages website you visited wasn't the real yellow pages website, the evil genius was on the take, and the pod of cyborg sperm whales promptly deployed around a carefully positioned dummy sub.

  9. Cheapest evil genius going, you say?

    When you bribe an evil genius to scatter decoy submarines about, Mr. Aanimal, don't be surprised if you have some trouble finding the real one yourself afterwards... and don't be surprised if the TSA takes a little more of an interest in that dummy safe of yours than you expected.

    (That's the problem with weaponized brine shrimp, you know, in dehydrated form they're so hard to tell from powdered anthrax...)

  10. ArthurMiller@OUSalesperson29/3/09 01:01

    I like to jump in here and apologise for assuming that the cheapest evil genius going would be male. Although it seems my assumption was correct in this case.

    In any event I'd always thought that I'd be looking up the paper version of the yellow pages but I suppose that any self-respecting evil genius would be on someone else's take, and someone else's take, and some else's ad infinitum.