Monday, June 27, 2011


Editor's Note

So I have decided to drop the whole once-a-week issue format. I have noticed a back log in my alerts, so I will now write and post when I feel like it, and you will all just have to keep checking to see when the next issue is released.

I also will be postponing my rant on American Civil War alternate histories until I publish my upcoming interview with author Hugh Ashton, so get excited about that.

In other news, Norway joins the enlightened group of nations who enjoy this blog. You join an elite club Norway, don't screw it up. Meanwhile, Africa continues their embargo against my blog...

Alternate History May Get You a Job

A career counselor told me once to not be afraid to put anything I may think is relevant on my resume because you never know what is going to stand out to a prospective employer. I have found through my many interviews that this is very true. I have been told I was selected for an interview because of where I went to school, where I worked, organizations I was a member of and even the fact that I was an Eagle Scout.

Nevertheless, I never thought my "interests" would ever get me a job. For those whose resumes do not have this section, some resumes list the the interests of the hopeful employee, as does mine. I think you know where I am going with this: I listed alternate history as one of my interests. It was only recently, however, that someone even bothered to notice it.

It happened a week ago. I went to an interview for a job at a small firm in downtown Chicago. The interview started normally with the interviewer going down my resume and asking questions about my experience. Then he came to the end of my resume and said: "Now we come to the real reason I decided to interview you...what is alternate history?"

Turns out the interviewer was a huge history buff, but he had never heard the term before. So, naturally, I gave him an explanation and even a link to Uchronia. He seemed genuinely curious, so if I accomplished anything (besides getting a job) I may have recruited another member into the cult of alternate history fandom.

I guess the moral of this story is to not hide who you are. If you like something, celebrate it, do not hide it. You never know what your "esoteric" hobby will do for you in the end.

Not AH: Untold Story by Monica Ali

Did I not say that this would be a recurring segment? The most recent offender turns out to be this review of Monica Ali's Untold Story.

Untold Story is about Princess Diana faking her death, changing her identity and moving to a small American town to escape the paparazzi. Things are going great, until one annoying paparazzo stumbles upon the hidden princes, turning the novel into a thriller as Diana attempts to once again flee.

The reviewer, however, makes the mistake of calling the story an alternate history. If you paid attention to the last issue at all, you probably already know my reason for disagreeing. This novel is a secret history, enough said. In fact it is very similar to other thrillers involving lost heirs to the Romanov family that appear from time to time.

Sadly, you will probably see this segment again in the near future.

What If History: An Alternate History Podcast

Well I am excited, because there is now an alternate history podcast. It is located at What If History, but you can also download it free from iTunes.

The podcast is very new and I have only listened to a couple of episodes. It involves two guys by the names of Nick and Brian who discuss what if questions. It is a perfect set up for an alternate history fan like myself who also likes to listen to podcasts as well. My only complaint (and I do not want to complain to much because I really want to give these guys a chance) is that Nick and Brian need to relax. Both seem very nervous as they talk and sometimes it can be distracting.

Nick and Brian, if you are reading this blog, I would like to say that I salute you for this great idea, but try not to stress out while doing it. A good podcast needs both a catching idea and hosts who can converse easily with each other and any guests. Enjoy the chance to create something that no one has thought of yet. One more thing: get angry when debating. You guys have to be two of the calmest alternate historians I ever met!

Good luck Nick and Brian, I will be listening as long as you keep producing new episodes.

Coming Soon: Goliath by Scott Westerfeld

Goliath is the third (and final?) in Scott Westerfeld's alternate history/steampunk young adult series. It focuses on an alternate World War I, where the Triple Alliance uses steampunk weaponry, while the Entente uses synthetic creatures. The book will not be released until September 20, 2011
, but you can catch an early review of the novel here.

Links to the Multiverse
Law and the Multiverse - a curious blog that discusses how comics portray the law. Not exactly alternate history, but every once in a while they touch on legal issues affecting interactions with parallel universes, making this an interesting reference source.

Review of Harry Turtledove's How Few Remain by Mark Gillespie.

Harry Turtledove Wiki - A wiki maintained by Turtledove fans, giving detailed info on all his books, not just the alternate history ones.

A Detailed Map Showing all the Mysteries of Fringe - a detailed map on io9 showing the alternate universe version of the United States from the TV show Fringe.

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