Thursday News: Tess Gerristen sues over Gravity, new Octavia Butler stories published, Cover Contest begins, and amazing “pop-top” dress

Thursday News: Tess Gerristen sues over Gravity, new Octavia Butler stories...

Tess Gerritsen sues over Gravity – So in 1999, Tess Gerritsen sold the rights to her book, Gravity, to New Line Productions, but the movie never got off the ground. However, in adapting the book into a screenplay, Gerritsen claims she added material that was not in the book, but that DID end up in the film, including the idea of the woman dangling in space. However, Gerritsen was not credited for the movie, nor did she get a piece of the profits. In response, Warner Brothers pointed to a statement in which Gerritsen claimed the movie was “not based on [her] book.”

Gerritsen claims while she tried to make her book into a screenplay she wrote new material … scenes that included a space station being demolished by debris and the female astronaut drifting untethered through space. –TMZ

Early Octavia Butler stories coming out in June – Fans of Octavia Butler’s wonderful books should be excited by the fact that two previously unpublished stories are coming to market next month (June). Butler, who died in 2006, wrote these works early in her career, and Walter Mosely has written an introduction to the two-story volume. According to Mosley, the stories pre-figure Butler’s later works, in which she contemplated issues such as the construction of race and gender, the insider/outsider dynamic, and colonialism. As a black woman, Butler challenged the SF/F author status quo, and was finally inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame in 2010.

Butler’s literary agent, Merrilee Heifetz, found the stories, written in the early 1970s, among the author’s papers at the Huntington Library in San Marino, Calif. According to Open Road, “A Necessary Being” tells of how the leaders of two ancient tribes “must broker a delicate peace to ensure that their peoples are to survive.” In “Childfinder,” a young woman “locates children with budding psionic powers and teaches them to protect themselves from society.” –Washington Post

2013 Cover Contest – From now until May 21st, you can vote for (hopefully) your favorite covers. Although there have been some changes to the categories (see below), the contest is still largely the same. This year’s is dedicated to Karen Wheless, who died last July from cancer, and who headed up the “Contemporary” and “Worst Cover” categories for the contest.

This year we’ve combined a few categories and divided covers into Historical (before 1980) or Contemporary (after 1980) based on the time frame of the story inside. We have also added an outside of the box category, Avant Garde. This category is for terrific covers that do not meet our romance guidelines, covers that offer a unique design outside the current cover trends, or covers that take a trend and give it a unique twist. It is a difficult category to pigeon hole and that’s precisely what we are looking for, covers outside the “box”. –Cover Cafe

Short on money, Palmdale teen crafts a soda can prom dress – This is just such a bittersweet story. 19-year-old Brie Fainblit and her boyfriend do not have much money. And by “not much,” I mean, they have not even been able to afford to go to prom. But this year, James worked to earn the money for tickets, while Brie worked on making her own dress – from soda tabs. Check out the pictures and the chronicle of the dress’s creation.

For months, Brie’s aunt, Sylvia Davalos, has asked everyone at her jobs to help. She has put out jars at the 10th Street Wal-Mart, where she floats between departments, and at a local elementary school, where she works a few hours a day as a playground supervisor and instructional assistant.
Brie, her boyfriend and assorted friends and family have turned the dining-room table into an assembly line — threading together neon tabs from energy drinks and beers to make what they call “note to self” bracelets. They are thank-yous for donations, but also reminders to keep the tabs coming until the prom project’s done. –Los Angeles Times