Pixel Scroll 1/2 Sacrificing Poisoned Pixels While Dancing Naked in the Scrolls

(0) APOLOGY TENDERED. Greg van Eekhout is quite right to be displeased —

I was so struck with the association sparked between two posts about not having a book out in 2016 that I quite insensitively plowed over the real life causes he was relating. I apologize for making light of his situation.

(1) HOW TO IMPROVE. Sherwood Smith’s post “Beginning Writer Errors” at Book View Café shares the distilled wisdom she found in an old set of notes taken during a Loscon panel by that name.

I think these lists interesting mostly because they reveal writerly process at least as much as they do beginner errors. Some of the best discussion arose out of what some considered no error at all, and others considered advice for revision, not for first draft errors, and what the difference was.

For pants writers (those who sit down and let the tale spin out through their fingers before going back to see what they have) one set of rules might be helpful and another useless; for plotters and planners, a completely different set….

Panelist’s Three’s list suggests to me that that writer works by a completely different process:

  1. Ending every chapter on a transition.
  2. Letting the narrative voice tell readers what to think.
  3. Long, clumsy sentences.

To number one, half the panelists disagreed. Note: “transitions are natural chapter breaks.” The writer defended it: “this pattern reads artificial.”

(2) HELP HELPS. “Joe Hill Calls Bullshit On The Crazy Artist Cliché” by Hayley Campbell at Buzzfeed.

“I was just really paranoid and really depressed and really unhappy and full of really nutty ideas. I would call my dad with my latest crazy ideas and he would patiently listen. He was the only person who could listen to me. And he’d talk me through and explain why my latest idea about being pursued and prosecuted and persecuted was irrational.”

Hill wouldn’t go into what he calls his “terrible, lunatic notions”, because he doesn’t like revisiting them. But eventually his dad suggested that seeing someone professionally could help him out – an idea Hill had resisted because he was convinced the paranoia and “lunatic ideas” were connected to his creativity. “I thought if I got help, I wouldn’t be able to write any more.”

It all goes back to another cliché: the crazy artist. But as a crazy artist, he got no actual work done. The three novels he couldn’t finish are testament to that cliché being bullshit.

“I got into therapy and I got on a pill, and what I discovered was getting help didn’t make me less creative. What was making me less creative was being a depressed crazy person. Figuring out how to be happy and have fun with the kids again, how to have fun with my life and work, actually made me a better writer, not a worse writer.”

(3) BEST SF FILMS OF 2015. JJ says Brian Merchant’s “The 11 Sci-Fi Films That Defined 2015”at Motherboard is “A ‘Best SF Films’ list that isn’t just a re-hash of other lists.” Part of the proof – The Martian ranks ahead of The Force Awakens – and three other movies rank above them.

The major themes that bubbled up in the year’s science fictional slipstream included income inequality, artificial intelligence, transgender rights, and the power and necessity of the scientific endeavor itself. Young adult dystopias showed signs of flagging, while classic-mold sci-fi mega franchises boomed (with one exception). There were not one but two great feminist-leaning SF films; one a bona fide blockbuster hit, another a powerful, slow-burning indie. There was an already-beloved animated short about our possible futures.

(4) THE HEISENBERG CERTAINTY PRINCPLE. Jonathan M is right, however, it is equally clear that when no one was paying attention to them, they were not starved out of existence for lack of it.

(5) STEAMING PILE. Just one person’s opinion, but I think this logo (first posted last April) isn’t that different from the real 1988 Hugo Award base.

1988 Hugo Award base by Ned Dameron

1988 Hugo Award base by Ned Dameron

(6) TODAY’S BIRTHDAY BOY

  • BORN January 2, 1920 – Isaac Asimov

(7) JASON WINGREEN OBIT. Yahoo! News reports actor Jason Wingreen passed away January 1.

The Brooklyn native appeared in three episodes of The Twilight Zone, most notably portraying the real train conductor in the 1960 episode in “A Stop at Willoughby.” …[He] died a memorable death as Dr. Linke on the 1968 Star Trek episode “The Empath.”

… On The Empire Strikes Back (1980), Wingreen auditioned for the part of Yoda. He didn’t get that role (Frank Oz did), but he was given four lines of dialogue spoken by the masked Boba Fett, the feared bounty hunter who captures Han Solo (Harrison Ford).

“I think the actual work, aside from the hellos and goodbyes and all that, could have been no more than 10 minutes,” he said. He received no credit for his work (it didn’t become publicly known that the voice was his until about 2000)…

(8) MEADOWLARK LEMON OBIT. Meadowlark Lemon, who passed away December 27, starred in a few Saturday morning outings (animated, and otherwise) as James H. Burns recalls in an appreciation written for the NY local CBS affiliate website.

In 1979, there was yet another Globetrotters cartoon, The Super Globetrotters, in which they became super heroes, but Lemon was not part of that mix. That same year, though, he co-starred in the fantasy comedy theatrical feature film, The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh (along with Julius Erving (Doctor J!), Debbie Allen and Stockard Channing). According to some sources, the movie–about a failing professional basketball team, saved by stocking its roster according to the players’ astrological signs–has developed something of a cult following….

(9) FIFTH! “Indiana Jones 5 Confirmed By Disney” is the headline. Tarpinian’s suggestion for the movie title is “Indiana Jones and the Rocking Chair of Gold.”

Speaking to Yahoo earlier in 2015, Spielberg said he’ll likely work on the film and that it would star Harrison Ford. Bradley Cooper and Chris Pratt were rumoured to play a younger version of the archeologist.

He said: “Now I’ll probably do an Indy 5 with Harrison, [so] it’ll be five for Harrison, four for Tom [Hanks].”

In a separate interview with French radio RTL, Spielberg said: “I am hoping one day to make it to an Indiana Jones V. I would hope to make it before Harrison Ford is 80 and I get much older.”

Spielberg’s quotes suggests that both he and Harrison Ford are on board for the sequel, though neither has officially said as much.

(10) FIRST! While you’re waiting for the new Indy film, Open Culture recommends you click on “Great ‘Filmumentaries’ Take You Inside the Making of Spielberg’s Raiders of the Lost Ark & Jaws.

Even casual filmgoers will recognize these movies, and they’ll feel, shortly after pressing play on [Jamie] Benning’s Inside Jaws and Raiding the Lost Ark, as if they’ve just settled in to watch them again, though they’ll see them as they never have before. Serious film fans will, as the form of the filmumentary emerges, recognize the basis of the concept. Described as “visual commentaries,” these productions take the concept of the commentary track and step it up considerably, overlaying the original film’s soundtrack with the words of a veritable chorus of those who worked on it — actors (even some not ultimately cast), crew members, designers, producers, hangers-around — sourced and sometimes even recorded by Benning.

 

(11) LOGAN’S RUN AND AUTHOR APPEARANCE. William F. Nolan, co-author of Logan’s Run, will be on hand when the Portland Geek Council presents the film Logan’s Run on January 17.

(12) TWU WUV.  “Jared Weissman Made Harry Potter Fictional Wizard’s Broomstick For Girlfriend”. With DIY photos taken as he made a copy of the Nimbus 2000.

“Shelby has been obsessed with Harry Potter for a long time now and about a year ago decided she wanted to start collecting prop replicas,” Weissman told Mashable in an email. “We went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter this past summer where she bought the Sorcerer’s Stone, Tom Riddle’s diary, and a plaster scroll that says Dumbledoor’s Army with 6 wands mounted on it (Harry, Ron, Hermoine, Luna, Neville, and Ginny).”

From that point on, it was pretty clear to Weissman what the perfect Christmas gift for Shelby would be.

(13) FROSTY PERSONALITY. The Game of Thrones parody “Winter Is Not Coming” is a French commercial from Greenpeace about climate change.

(14) IMPERIAL TRAILER PARK. If you’re not burnt out on Star Wars stuff, Mark-kitteh recommends a fan-made trailer for Empire Strikes Back, deliberately aiming for a modern trailer style. Mark adds,

For reference, I found a vid of the 1979 original as well. It’s an interesting contrast – the original has a fun high-energy vide, but is a bit too breathless (and spoiler-filled!) for modern tastes.

 

[Thanks to Mark-kitteh, Will R., JJ, Nigel, and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day JJ.]

163 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 1/2 Sacrificing Poisoned Pixels While Dancing Naked in the Scrolls

  1. I don’t agree with all that he says by any stretch, but it’s clear that he’s trying to be reasonable and rational.

    Sort of. He does do the typical Puppy move of lying though, when he says this:

    It has now been established that voting No Award without reading the works is acceptable behavior. It’s also been established that it’s perfectly OK for members to distribute large numbers of Supporting Memberships to other members to “get out the vote.” Both of those were done by the anti-Puppy side.

    If you’re just going to make up bullshit like Ken did there, it should at least be plausible bullshit and not something that is so ridiculous that it makes the writer who came up with it look like a nincompoop.

  2. I swear this is the last time, but… I have to make one more plea to see if anybody else will take a look at The Leftovers on HBO. It’s had a stunning season, and the episode called International Assassin, which features a sort of Hotel Purgatory, was probably the best overall episode of TV I saw in 2015, and I thought it was a pretty darn good year for TV. I loved Agent Carter’s pilot and a couple of Doctor Whos, but they didn’t compare to International Assassin. Jessica Jones is too dark and I have an unreasonable dislike for Kristen Ritter that dates back to the Gilmore Girls, so that one won’t be on my shortlist. I do love Orphan Black, but I think it was better in previous seasons. Tatiana Maslany deserves all the awards all the time, but the show itself lost its step a bit for me this year. The Leftovers is the opposite. I didn’t watch past the first couple of episodes in its first season, but I tried again and the second season just blew me away.

  3. @BigelowT – Sold. I’m short on both BDP categories (confession: I cannot watch anything where everyone is in peril most of the time, so Agents of Shield, etc., aren’t for me) and I have some time this month for both The Leftovers and at least a stab at Jessica Jones.

    For Agent Carter, which I loved as much for its set design as for its acting, I have both the pilot and Snafu.

  4. I swear this is the last time, but… I have to make one more plea to see if anybody else will take a look at The Leftovers on HBO. It’s had a stunning season, and the episode called International Assassin, which features a sort of Hotel Purgatory, was probably the best overall episode of TV I saw in 2015

    I completely agree. It’s on my list, along with:

    Game of Thrones / Episode 5.8, Hardhome
    Humans / Episode 6
    The Expanse / Episode 4, CQB (or maybe the pilot; I can’t decide)
    The Man in the High Castle / Episode 10, A Way Out

  5. I really do enjoy the fact that we disagree with each other so frequently: admittedly, we’re total failures in the hive mind stakes, but I like that as well.

    Of course, I know very little about birds, but with the aid of RedWombat I’m a little less ignorant than I was, and I can certainly understand why a President would establish a wild life sanctuary in an area vitally important for bird migration.

    What’s puzzling me at present is that Roosevelt established it in 1908, and, since it’s now 2016, it’s taken its opponents well over a century to decide that it’s a really bad idea, and that what’s really needed there is a bunch of people with lots of guns, though they haven’t yet explained which birds they propose to shoot, if any, in default of shooting Federal employees.

    No doubt fellow Filers will enlighten me on this in due course…

  6. Jim Henley said:

    Of course you realize this means war.

    I did say it was unreasonable.

    And Cheryl S. said:

    For Agent Carter, which I loved as much for its set design as for its acting, I have both the pilot and Snafu.

    I was going to say the costumes, but the production design and set decoration are just as good as the costumes. And Hayley Atwell is terrific.

    Thank you, Zakur. I also have a lot of Man in the High Castle to catch up with, but I’ll get there.

  7. @Stevie

    As I understand it, the local ranchers have been at odds with the Bureau of Land Management off and on for decades, possibly exacerbated by the BLM using some arm-twisting from time to time to try to get more ranchers to sell their land. The disputes never rose to the level of anyone threatening violence. The people doing that now are very much outsiders – it’s the same bunch that have been carrying on a slow-motion standoff with federal law enforcement down in Nevada for months. Nobody in the area actually wants them involved, not even the ranchers at the center of the current dispute.

  8. The people doing that now are very much outsiders – it’s the same bunch that have been carrying on a slow-motion standoff with federal law enforcement down in Nevada for months.

    The only question is whether they should be called Vanilla Isis or Y’All Qaeda.

    They’re definitely engaging in yeehawd.

  9. Was going to write a review of The Infinite Loop tonight but gave up, too hard to write on my phone. It’ll have to wait till I can use a library computer. Starting reading Cuckoo Song instead — thanks, Kyra, for the recommendation. See y’all tomorrow.

  10. @Stevie: Magna Carta Envy. They’re convinced that the US management of federal lands is just like King John’s abuse of “King’s forest” rents. I am not making this up even. They also have bizarre notions of the “proper” authority of county sheriffs based on their…let’s say understanding of English common law, and an interpretation of the US Constitution based on a limited vocabulary. Case in point: they don’t understand all the senses of the phrase “dispose of” in Article IV, Section 3.

    But all that’s motivated reasoning. At bottom, they want a freer hand with federal lands than they can currently get, even though environmentalists believe the Bureau of Land Management and US Forest Service both slant wildly in favor of herding and resource extraction. (Environmentalist refer to the BLM as the “Bureau of Livestock and Mining.) Like revanchists everywhere, the Bundy-ists find it emotionally easier to first talk themselves into believing they are victims.

    Something to keep in mind related to that: these guys are all landowners: holders of large estates. This is very much a rebellion of the propertied classes.

  11. Jim Henley on January 3, 2016 at 5:19 pm said:

    @Stevie: Magna Carta Envy. They’re convinced that the US management of federal lands is just like King John’s abuse of “King’s forest” rents. I am not making this up even.

    Something to keep in mind related to that: these guys are all landowners: holders of large estates. This is very much a rebellion of the propertied classes.

    OK, so not that unlike the feudal barons who gave King John a hard time 🙂

  12. @Aaron

    He does do the typical Puppy move of lying though, when he says this:

    It has now been established that voting No Award without reading the works is acceptable behavior. It’s also been established that it’s perfectly OK for members to distribute large numbers of Supporting Memberships to other members to “get out the vote.” Both of those were done by the anti-Puppy side.

    In what way is he lying? Many people did claim that they refused to read the puppy-nominated works (at least the ones from Castillia house). And we do know of at least one person who gave away ten supporting memberships to people to vote against the puppies. http://maryrobinettekowal.com/journal/talk-with-me-about-being-a-fan-of-science-fiction-and-fantasy/

    I might argue that I think he’s exaggerating. I can’t find any major figure in the SF world (not even a puppy) arguing that it’s okay to vote without reading. And as far as I know, there were only ten supporting memberships given away–not 2,500. But exaggerating isn’t the same as lying.

    When one of the puppies tries to reach out, I really do think fans ought to try to reach back.

  13. I’d honestly be more concerned for the birds in a different season. Fortunately most of the Greater Sandhill Cranes should be hanging out far to the south, not in immediate danger from bored and trigger-happy militia nuts.

    Seem to recall some of the people involved were responsible for some fires up that way too, but memory may be faulty.

  14. And we do know of at least one person who gave away ten supporting memberships to people to vote against the puppies

    Er, no.

    The memberships were given away to people who were then free to vote however they liked. Various Puppies said they’d ask for one, and Mary said they were absolutely welcome to; the point was to increase voting membership, not to establish a litmus test for who got the memberships.

    And there were enough people who matched or added to Mary’s offer that it would up a lot more than ten.

  15. @Greg Hullender – To vote against the Puppies? Say what? She says in the post (and said on Twitter at the time) that “I am in no way constraining how that member nominates or votes.” There’s nothing in any of that about voting against the puppies, and she talks at length about bringing people currently outside fandom (including puppies) into fandom.

  16. Seem to recall some of the people involved were responsible for some fires up that way too, but memory may be faulty.

    The Dumbfucks In A Hut are claiming to be doing this for a father and son convicted of arson on the land. The father and son, however, are not there and want nothing to do with these bozeaux.

  17. In what way is he lying?

    By lying.

    Many people did claim that they refused to read the puppy-nominated works (at least the ones from Castillia house).

    I haven’t seen anyone do that. In fact, I’ve seen a lot of people say they gave all of the nominated works their best effort at reading them. What we have seen is the vast majority of non-Pups actually read (and in many cases, give extensive commentary upon) the Puppy nominated works, and then voted.

    And we do know of at least one person who gave away ten supporting memberships to people to vote against the puppies.

    Did you actually read your link? Because Kowal very explicitly says “If you can afford it, I encourage you to buy a membership to WorldCon and become part of fandom. If you cannot afford it… I will buy a supporting membership to WorldCon for ten people, chosen at random, who cannot afford it. I am in no way constraining how that member nominates or votes.” Chosen at random, with no expectation of how the recipient will vote. The entire post is about inviting everyone in and having their voice heard. It is, in fact, the exact opposite of what you are saying it is.

  18. And we do know of at least one person who gave away ten supporting memberships to people to vote against the puppies.

    Actually, she didn’t require anybody to say why or how they’d vote. For all we or she know, those ten memberships went to Puppy supporters.

  19. Greg Hullender:

    “And we do know of at least one person who gave away ten supporting memberships to people to vote against the puppies.”

    No, sorry to say this, but that is a lie. You link to a post were a person pays for memberships for people to do with as they please. Vote for puppies, against puppies or not at all. This was a campaign that got support from some puppies that also paid for memberships.

  20. Greg Hullender: Many people did claim that they refused to read the puppy-nominated works (at least the ones from Castillia house).

    Actually, what I remember is a relatively small proportion of people saying that they’d vote on principle against all works on a slate–which isn’t quite the same thing. Many of those seemed to have changed their minds later, though I couldn’t begin to assess the numbers. Was this established as “acceptable behavior”? Well, given that the voters were taking a stand against slating, period, not just the SP/RP slates, I’d say it was–but not in the sense of “voting without reading,” in my opinion. Those who focused on Castalia House tended to say that they’d read what was the in the Hugo Packet but would not send money to Vox Day. That definitely isn’t the same thing as voting No Award without having read the works on the ballot, in my opinion–those voters read the works; they just didn’t buy them separately from the Hugo Packet. (And I think everything from CH was available that way. Wasn’t it? If it wasn’t, I apologize for the error–but I am sure that most of it was so available, in any case, because I read most of it.)

    Most people at least declared an intention of reading the slated works. Of those, many seem to have found the slated works not worth voting for, after having read them. So was the statement you quote a lie or an exaggeration? I’d call it an exaggeration intended to give a false impression, which is close enough to a lie for my definition of the word.

  21. Greg Hullender on January 3, 2016 at 5:33 pm said:

    And we do know of at least one person who gave away ten supporting memberships to people to vote against the puppies. http://maryrobinettekowal.com/journal/talk-with-me-about-being-a-fan-of-science-fiction-and-fantasy/

    We do *not* indeed, and now you have besmirched the name of a good and generous and decent person and I cannot let it stand.

    Ms. Kowal gave supporting memberships to people who could not afford them and asked her for them. She very explicitly said she would do this for *anybody* without checking their beliefs beforehand and without requiring anything whatsoever of the people she gave them to..

    It was a very sweet, very generous gesture on Kowal’s part.

    The lies — and they are nothing but — that the Puppies have spread about her generosity have been particularly revolting and malevolent.

  22. Greg Hullender:

    And as far as I know, there were only ten supporting memberships given away–not 2,500. But exaggerating isn’t the same as lying.

    It was around 100. She initially announced she would pay for 10, then others volunteered to pay for more. Here is a comment Kowal wrote about the ethics of it in response to reader’s questions. (At the time the comment was written, only 45 memberships had been donated).

    You should run a search for posts here containing the name Kowal — many of those in April and May will contain links about this issue, and what she really said.

    http://file770.com/?p=22515
    Kowal: I can’t actually comment on this much, because I decided to try to do something to bridge the gap between the multiple groups of fans and am crowdsourcing a set of supporting memberships for WorldCon. So I’m trying to stay neutral to avoid swaying votes. Which means that I’m declining any Hugo nominations next year (since a supporting membership this year means you can vote next year) and attempting to not express opinions about any of the nominees.

  23. Quote from page 31 of Cuckoo Song. Triss, the coddled, cosseted, always sickly child, has entered the preserved room of her elder brother who died in the War:

    If Triss were found here, even she would be in trouble. She might have special privileges for loitering near death’s door, but Sebastian had passed through it and so outranked her.

    I can already tell I’m going to be dogearing a lot of pages in this book.

  24. Note that the Ken Burnside piece appears to have been written right after the Hugos last year. So he may have calmed down a bit more in the interim.

    I don’t doubt that the man had a trying time. But Sad Puppies was a slate from beginning to end, and Torgersen’s focus on culture war issues was unrelenting. If Ken didn’t like that, I can totally sympathize; it certainly would have made *me* uncomfortable to be in the middle of that. But there was an easy and obvious solution. And he didn’t take it.

    The argument that we should have given Hugos to some of the slate so the Puppies would know they were welcome is … odd. Behavior you reward is behavior you get more of. When your new puppy gets into the kitchen garbage you don’t take most of it away but leave her a couple of pieces so she’ll know she’s welcome. If you do that you’ll never be able to turn your back on the garbage again.

    And yes, Mary Robinette Kowal was extremely generous and a number of people clubbed in with her to make it possible for people who couldn’t afford a membership in Sasquan to get one. She set no requirement at all for how people must vote to qualify, and trust the Puppies to try to turn a gesture of generosity and good will into some sort of partisan stunt. Some people really do soil everything they touch.

  25. Greg Hullender: And we do know of at least one person who gave away ten supporting memberships to people to vote against the puppies.

    Where do you come up with this shit? Last time you insisted that I didn’t really mean what I said, and accused me of being disingenuous. Now you’re claiming that Kowal gave memberships away to people who would vote against Puppies — which as numerous other people here have pointed out, is patently false.

    Please. Just stop doing this.

  26. Jim Henley: I realize JJ and High Castle are very dark horses

    Come and see the violence inherent in the system! Help! Help! I’m being repressed! Oh, what a giveaway! Did you hear that? Did you hear that, eh? That’s what I’m on about! Did you see him repressing me? You saw him, didn’t you?

  27. @Mary Frances

    Actually, what I remember is a relatively small proportion of people saying that they’d vote on principle against all works on a slate–which isn’t quite the same thing

    I was one of those people who decided to vote no award in principle against slates in the written works. I did *read* everything so I could rank things below no award accurately. And actually even when doing this much of what I read was awful and would have gone before No Award anyway had I decided to not take a stand against slating

    Note, some non-slated works also ended up below no award (including the winner for novelette – The Day the World Turned Upside Down).

  28. I can verify that some of us voted without reading slated works. I’ve stated I did so numerous times here. Way back during SP1 I asked a lot of questions about how No Award worked and got a history lesson on why it had been added. I think I even read some of the debate stuff from back then. Kevin Standlee and a few other people were quite helpful over the last 3 years on answering questions. I don’t have the links saved although I think I came across them again during SP3.

    Every year I can remember Scalzi has recommended reading until you decide it’s not worthy and stopping. He also points out its a choice not a requirement. There are good reasons IMHO not to read a nominated work – one reason I don’t read some of them is I’ve read enough reviews to know they are going to trigger me & use tropes I particularly dislike in a triggering way (rape, abuse, lack of agency issues). Everything I’ve read by author previously has been offensive/hated and reviews indicate book is no different.

    In SP1 I read slated works. In SP2 I only read slated works by new authors. SP3 I’d had enough of their nonsense. In any category I normally voted on I read non-puppy work and ranked it, I put No Award, I left puppy slate material off the ballot and unread. In categories I don’t usually vote in I left the ballot blank as usual.

    I believe I’ve been voting for a couple years before puppygate.

  29. @Greg Hullender: I bought a supporting membership and voted against all the slated works without having read them. You know why? Because they cheated their way onto the ballot. That it was technically legal doesn’t alter the fact that it was completely unethical. No one who got onto the ballot by slating was entitled to the slightest consideration from me.

  30. P. 135:

    The night was thistle-sharp, spiderweb-tense. Not-Triss was part of its secrecy and danger now, but she sensed that she was not the most secretive or dangerous thing abroad. The night had no favorites. She could almost sense it curled around the world, dispassionate as a dragon, the stars mere glints in its black scales.

    Wonderfully sinister, especially the first sentence, now we’re learning more about what Triss (Not-Triss) really is.

    Also Chapter11 counts as one of the most remarkable uses of a silent movie ever in fiction.

  31. @BigelowT: (Orphan Black)

    Yeah, season 3 seemed a bit “off” in terms of Must Raise All The Stakes and Secrets In Secrets In Secrets. I think I liked the subplots more than the major plot.

    I do get a bit tired of the trope that every conspiracy must in turn be governed by an even more shadowy conspiracy, which has its own puppetmasters, and on and on. I much prefer the model where the players are individuals whose loyalties shift according to various situations, much like Delphine in season two. Conspiracies can only go so deep before it becomes cartoonish, but having divided interests pays off forever.

    @Kurt:

    I vote for Vanilla ISIS. 🙂

  32. I vote for Vanilla ISIS. 🙂

    It has been pointed out that insulting them by comparing them to Muslims is to assume Muslims are bad. I think there’s some wiggle room there — they’re being compared to extremist terrorist Muslims — but I can see the point.

    So I’m going to stick with calling them the Dumbfucks in a Hut.

  33. @Kurt:

    ISIS is a terrorist group that happens to stem from (or at least publicly declare allegiance to) a particularly noxious interpretation of Islam. Shying away from comparing this gang of idiots to ISIS to avoid tarring Muslims seems, to me, to commit a greater sin: that of conflating ISIS with “all Muslims.” That’s provably untrue; the vast majority of Muslims want nothing to do with ISIS.

    In other words, I am all in favor of “othering” both this group from mainstream America and ISIS from the peaceful majority of Muslims. That said, it’s your term and if you prefer DFIAH, so be it.

  34. (9) FIFTH! Oh please, let this franchise stop trying to relive the glory days. The last one was pretty bad. With someone playing a younger Indy, would Ford be there for a framing sequence (e.g., reminiscing), then the main part of the movie following the younger Ford? Hmm.

  35. FYI U.S. readers, both of Kameron Hurley’s “Worldbreaker Saga” books are on sale for $1.99 at Kobo & iTunes (and presumably other outlets). I skimmed the sample a while back and wasn’t pulled in, but (a) I was skimming and (b) IIRC I wasn’t really in book mode, so I plan to give it another shot, but maybe not while the sale’s still on.

    Two other random sales FYI (yup, items on my books-to-consider list):

    The Way Into Chaos by Harry Connolly is 99 cents at Kobo (no DRM), iTunes (probably no DRM, but not sure), and presumably other places. The Chris McGrath cover’s splendid and the plot/world sound potentially good, but I haven’t read the sample yet. Connolly was traditionally published before; this trilogy is self-published (IIRC, Kickstarted?).

    Knight Moves by Walter Jon Williams is 99 cents at Kobo (no DRM), iTunes (probably no DRM, but not sure), and presumably other places. All I know is that it’s SF and has a Centaur on the cover! My other half collects Centaurs, though this book sounds more up my alley (I read more SF than my other half). @Stoic Cynic recommended Aristoi over this, but still, Centaur! 😉 Centaur in SF = highly unusual = highly tempted.

  36. ObReadingUpdate: The Girl With Ghost Eyes is pretty good. It has an interesting collection of hopefully-somewhat-accurate (I’ve no idea) Chinese (mostly?) supernatural stuff. Well, it’s new to me, so it interests me.

    The protaganist-telling-us-emotions is a bit clunky, like “I was overwhelmed by emotion X,” followed shortly by “I was overwhelmed by emotion Y.” Also, the protaganist is somewhat knowledgeable but at the same time, ignorant/sheltered. I have to remind myself the time period plus cultural differences probably make this make sense, but I’m just ignorant of the time period and culture, so at first it seemed a bit odd. Or maybe the father’s just a jerk? Anyway, I’m enjoying it so far.

  37. @KurtBusiek

    The only question is whether they should be called Vanilla Isis or Y’All Qaeda.

    They’re definitely engaging in yeehawd.

    Good gods that was terrible.

    And by terrible I mean great. Hee!

  38. “So I’m going to stick with calling them the Dumbfucks in a Hut.”

    Racist Dumbfucks in a Hut. If these thugs should be compared to anyone, I think Ku Klux Klan would serve better.

  39. @Kendall: I quite liked Connolly’s Great Way trilogy. Note that it is a seamless three-volume story; there’s no closure to be had after either V1 or V2. My reviews of all three are on Amazon.

  40. I usually like Connolly’s books, but my life was really stressful and giving me anxiety attacks when I encountered the Way books this year. I got about a third of the way through the first one, looked at the progress of the story to that point, looked at how many pages there were until the end of the trilogy, and decided I would get back to it… eventually.

    There are a lot of books this year that I have been avoiding or postponing after reading a few chapters or because the reviews described them as “dark”. “The Fifth Season” grabbed me and pulled me in despite its darkness, which is one reason it will be in my short list.

  41. @Kurt Busiek:

    The only question is whether they should be called Vanilla Isis or Y’All Qaeda.

    “The Redneck Caliphate” also has a certain ring to it.

  42. @StephenfromOttawa

    Did we know that Kevin J Anderson was associated with Writers of the Future (presumably the friendship-or-colleague connection to Torgersen) and I’d just forgotten..? My memory can be, hm, selective, and I was mildly surprised to see him listed as editor of the anthology at your link.

  43. Yeehawd made me smile. Devising insulting nicknames for the people engaging in it… did not.

Comments are closed.