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dewline July 30 2014, 14:23

Computer Issues

Okay, so here's the issue: my regular MacBook Pro has a cooling fan problem. The replacement's been ordered, but I fully expect that to take a week to arrive via the post office. Possibly longer, but miracles have been known to happen despite the war of sabotage waged by the right-wing parties of the USA and Canada against our respective postal services. (Yes, I wrote that. I believe it to be true. If they sue me over it, they won't get much in either a judgement or settlement because what I have ain't worth much. Even on eBay.)

That aside, the day-job search will be slower than usual in the meantime, since the backup machine has its own issues. Hardware bottlenecks in particular - I suspect RAM and CPU limits of a ten-year-old machine - mean checking LJ out for job leads, gossip, and mental health news/advice (among many other things) will be...problematic for that next week. This can't be helped. So I'm likely to be logging into LJ from public library terminals in the meantime.

Just so you know.

More as it develops...
emily_shore July 30 2014, 12:27

Filing off the slash

Just come across the case of Kryptaria, the latest fanfic writer to file off the serial numbers and get their work published as original fiction.

The twist in this case is that the fic, Northwest Passage, is slash - but the novel, The Longest Night, is het. Hmmm.

Has anyone come across any decent meta on this? I have the feeling that most of the discussion has been within Sherlock fandom and I just haven't seen it.

On the other hand there may not be much to say other than "artistic integrity clearly not a priority here."

This entry was originally posted at http://naraht.dreamwidth.org/576075.html. Please comment there using OpenID.
sbisson July 30 2014, 11:00

My tweets

Read more...Collapse )
jmswallow July 30 2014, 08:57

24: Deadline audiobook exclusive preview

My new novel 24: Deadline hits bookstores next week, in hardcover format from Forge Books for the US market and paperback from Titan Books for the UK - and in association with Audible, MacMillan Audio are releasing an unabridged audiobook edition read by actor Fred Berman.

Click on the Soundcloud link below to hear an exclusive preview of the complete prologue for 24: Deadline...

nwhyte July 30 2014, 07:34

Asquith's notes, 30 July 1914

We had another turn of the kaleidoscope today. I was sitting in the Cabinet room with a map of Ulster and a lot of statistics about populations and religions, endeavouring to get into something like shape my speech on the Amending Bill, when a telephone message came from Bonar Law to ask me to go and see him and Carson at his Kensington abode. He had sent his motor, which I boarded, and in due time arrived at my destination. I found the two gentlemen there, and Bonar Law proceeded to propose in the interests of the international situation that we should postpone for the time being the second reading of the Amending Bill. He thought that to advertise our domestic dissensions at this moment would weaken our influence in the world for peace. Carson said that at first he had thought it impossible to agree, as it would strain still further the well-known and much tried patience of his Ulstermen, but he had come to see that it was now a patriotic duty. I, of course, welcomed their attitude, but said I would consult my colleagues before giving a definite answer. When I got back I saw Lloyd George and Grey and we agreed that it was right to close with the offer. Redmond, whom I saw afterwards, thought it an excellent chance of putting off the Amending Bill. The City, which is in a terrible state of depression and paralysis, is for the time being all against English intervention. The prospect is very black.
princeofcairo July 30 2014, 07:16

The Rex Of the Old 97, Again

Continuing with the third of four suggested campaigns for my home game group here in Chicago. This one is a rerun from 2008 because a) I didn't get to run it and b) it fit the parameters for the new game. (As before, props to robotnik's Unknown USA game, to which this might act as an "unauthorized Purist prequel.")

Those parameters, as you may have guessed, were "Westerns." My players decided (generally) collectively that they wanted to see a (generally) Western game this time around. We've played (and loved) Dogs in the Vineyard, but it doesn't really have the kind of long-campaign legs my group has become accustomed to. Hence these four choices instead including, as I noted above, one game that we all thought dead emerging out of the heat distortion ...


The Centennial Exposition of 1876, so the word on the Spirit Telegraph goes, was a missed opportunity. The Civil War busted up America's foundations, and every Jack and Knight and Knave out there has been drawing as many cards as he can to win himself King on the ruins. What could have been a re-Founding became a secret Fort Sumter; magick thrown down and claims made that can't be unmade. The Pinkertons, fresh from smashing the Klan, are trying to nail everything down; the Informationale and the Anarchitects are trying to blow everything up. The Gold Lords and Silver Men have squared off against each other; the Trismos command their strange railway specters, though the Good Roads Club screams that the specters command the Trismos. And word has it that the Great Gray Guns, fled from the South, are massing somewhere in the West, in a town called Tombstone...

My initial notion for the game is that it will run over a longish historical scope, possibly finishing up at the Pan-American Exposition in 1901. As with most Unknown Armies games, you will collaboratively determine your own narrative structure: Are you trying to enforce your own cabal's vision of the new America? Are you a band of Anarchitect heralds, or a Pinkerton squad? Do you serve Gold, or Silver, or some other element? Are you freelance heroes, riding in to save the day, or Jacks at the table playing to rake in all the chips?

System: Unknown Armies 2nd ed., with magick schools tweaked for the 19th century where necessary. Depending on how speedy-snappy Greg Stolze is with his in-progress Unknown Armies 3rd ed. rules, we may give those a spin this time out.
kradical July 30 2014, 04:25

I am the stinkburger chef!

So I was toodling around on Amazon looking at reviews, which is sometimes edifying -- but often not. Witness a one-star review of V-Wars by E. Lee Zimmerman, a.k.a. Trekscribbler, a.k.a. Ed, in which he trashed the anthology overall, including this particular bit:
… but when your go-to-roster includes stinkburger chef Keith R.A. Decandido in the line-up it’s pretty clear you’re reaching for mediocrity more so than greatness.

I would like to hereby request that all my publishers henceforth use the byline "Stinkburger Chef Keith R.A. DeCandido" as my byline....

We've already had a grand old time on Facebook and Twitter regarding Mr. Zimmerman's neologism, and one friend is trying to convince me to create a fan page on Facebook, and I'm actually considering it.

I also know that this is going to be a thing at Shore Leave this weekend -- especially given that David Mack, Dayton Ward, and Kevin Dilmore are going to be there. Hell, I've had four different fans request that I sign their books with "Stinkburger Chef" as part of the autograph.....

Mr. Zimmerman reviews quite a bit on Amazon -- over 1100 reviews going back to 1999 -- but the only other one of my books he's reviewed is Dragon Precinct, which he gave two stars and said at one point:
DeCandido (and others) has done a scholar's work in sinking the "Star Trek" franchise into the worst level of vanity publishing

Love it. :)

Thanks, Mr. Zimmerman -- or perhaps I can call you Ed? It's been a shitty couple of days for me and Wrenn, but this cheered me right up.

yours, sincerely,
---the Stinkburger Chef
emily_shore July 30 2014, 01:50

Another writing meme

Pick a character I’ve written and I will explain the top ~three to five ideas/concepts/etc I keep in mind while writing that character that I believe are essential to accurately depicting them.

With caveats:
• "Accurately" is relative to my own writing goals and not a requirement for everyone in the world to write the character the same way I do!
• I'm off on holiday in c. 24 hours so there may be a cut-off with delayed responses after that.

My fics can be found here.

This entry was originally posted at http://naraht.dreamwidth.org/575821.html. Please comment there using OpenID.
kristine_smith July 29 2014, 23:50

In exile

This morning at 4am or thereabouts, the first skunking of the season.

Herself was exiled to the deck after a scrub-down with Natures Miracle. She spent the day at puppy playcare being deskunked (read: fussed over by the groomers, who adore her). Then she got to play with her buddies for a few hours.

I’m not sure that she sees the downside to this….


You talkin' to me?

Mirrored from Kristine Smith.

tilia_tomentosa July 29 2014, 23:48

Knitting a rat toy

Ladies and gentlemen, we interrupt our regular flow of bunnies to show you a rat. :)

So, I finally got to post the result of that mystery knit-along, which I kept on knitting and undoing and knitting again long after it was no longer a "mystery" but thankfully there were other people who lagged behind or knitted more than one rat, so Ii always had virtual company, and the designer was very patient with us...

I tried out and rejected a lot of yarns and yarn combinations for this project, and knitted the body flat just because I didn’t have the right size double-point needles for the yarn I finally chose. Then I borrowed a set of bamboo double-point needles, but they didn’t work well with my yarns. Then I bought another set of double-point needles, which I found somewhat difficult to balance because they were a whole 20 cm long…

This may only be of interest to other knittersCollapse )
I attached the ears the wrong way, but decided to leave them as they are. So I have a very special big-eared rat now, which only befits a Wildly Experimental Rat. :)

Knitting the rat (lots of photos)Collapse )

And here is the finished rat exploring my computer desk:
 photo DSC03115_zpsa7a0f121.jpg

The pattern can be found here, but it is no longer free.
alexpgp July 29 2014, 23:42

More paint...

Another trip in the morning to go slap some paint on Natalie's house and do some detail work.

Unfortunately, doing all that work in the heat of the day pretty much took the stuffing out of me. (Galina and I had intended to leave before the start of rush hour, but failed to get up in time.)

Time to go get ready for tai chi.


P.S. Received the following in bacn. It'd be interesting if true:
Before the Beatles became famous they made a demo tape of 15 songs for Decca Records, which included the Mexican song Bésame Mucho (Kiss Me A Lot).

Here's the feedback that the Beatles manager got from Decca about those sessions:
"Not to mince words, Mr. Epstein, but we don't like your boys' sound. Groups are out; four-piece groups with guitars particularly are finished."
That's one of the all time greatest blunders. The amazing thing is that the Decca executive, Dick Rowe, didn't just reject the Beatles but predicted they would never succeed. He also said, "The Beatles have no future in show business."

...whereupon the email gets to the heart of the matter, which is not relevant here.

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