Frazetta’s “A Princess of Mars” painting sells for $1.2 million at auction

I’ve read about 11 of the Edger Rice Burroughs John Carter / Barsoom series. When my kids were small, I would spend an hour or more at bedtime, reading to them and then turning off the lights and leading a steampunk adventure that lasted for years. I drew lots of pulp adventure details right from the Barsoom series — though the ground rules of our shared role-playing world precluded any…

The ‘Cancelling’ of Flannery O’Connor? It Never Should Have Happened

I regularly teach Flannery O’Connor, and assign a whole book of her short stories when I taught an American Lit 1915-Present course. Now that I’m teaching “American Lit 1776-Present” I keep her stories in rotation, but I have more material to cover, so I have to be more selective. O’Connor’s fiction contains many themes and shining moments that celebrate and repudiate and transcend the Southern culture that formed her, the…

VIRUS DIARY: For these kids, no adventures to choose

BURKE, Va. (AP) — On a recent car ride, my sons, Billy and Jimmy, were discussing an interactive “Minecraft” show on Netflix that allowed them to choose the direction of the story. I said it sounded like a “Choose Your Own Adventure” book, an artifact of my 1980s childhood. Then Billy, who’s 10 years old, surprised me. He had heard of “Choose Your Own Adventure.” “My friend had one. He…

This Woman Inspired One of the First Hit Video Games by Mapping the World’s Longest Cave

The Medium headline calls Colossal Cave Adventure “one of the first the video games,” but it’s a stretch to use “video” to describe the modality of a command line text parser game. The former Patricia Crowther was very helpful to me when I interviewed her by telephone for my DHQ article. I could have written quite a lot more about her as a technologist, rather than mostly as a caver,…