Pixel Scroll 2/16/16 Think Pixel, Count Scroll

(1) CARNEGIE AND GREENAWAY LONGLISTS. The longlists for the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals have been announced.

The Carnegie Medal, established in 1936, is awarded annually to the writer of an outstanding book for children. The Kate Greenaway Medal has been given since 1955 for distinguished illustration in a book for children.

Locus Online has identified the works of genre interest on both lists.

(2) TOLKIEN POEMS DISCOVERED. Two poems by J.R.R. Tolkien have been discovered in a 1936 copy of a school annual reports the BBC.

The Shadow Man, and a Christmas poem called Noel, were found at Our Lady’s School, Abingdon.

It is thought Tolkien got to know the school while he was a professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford University.

The poems were printed a year before Tolkien’s first literary sensation The Hobbit was published.

The Shadow Man is an earlier version of a poem eventually published in 1962 in Tolkien’s Adventures of Tom Bombadil collection.

The existence of the poems came to light after American Tolkien scholar Wayne G. Hammond got in touch with the school.

According to The Guardian

The first poem, The Shadow Man, is an early version of a poem that Tolkien went on to publish in his 1962 collection The Adventures of Tom Bombadil. It tells of “a man who dwelt alone/ beneath the moon in shadow”, who “sat as long as lasting stone,/and yet he had no shadow”. When “a lady clad in grey” arrives, he wakes, and “clasped her fast, both flesh and bone;/and they were clad in shadow”.

The second, Noel, is a Christmas poem, albeit one set in scenery that would not be out of place in Middle-earth. “The hall was dark without song or light,/The fires were fallen dead,” writes Tolkien, going on to portray “the lord of snows”, whose “mantle long and pale/Upon the bitter blast was spread/And hung o’er hill and dale”.

(3) TWITTER WISHES. John Scalzi, in “What I Want Out of Twitter”, explains the changes he’d like to see made in this social media platform.

What I’m more interested in is how Twitter can make itself better, which is a different question than how Twitter can be saved. Twitter’s major issue, as everyone except apparently Twitter’s C-bench knows, is that there are a bunch of shitheads on it who like to roll up to whomever they see as targets (often women and/or people in marginalized groups) and dogpile on them. That’s no good….

So, if Twitter were asking me what I wanted out of Twitter to make it an optimal service for me, here’s what I would suggest, in no particular order:…

Other things to allow filtering of:

  • Profile keywords: If I could filter out every single account that had “#GamerGate” in its profile text, as an example, my replies would have been a lot quieter in the last couple of years.
  • Accounts based on who they follow: Right now I’m thinking of five Twitter accounts of people I think are basically real assholes. I suspect that if you are following all five of them, you are probably also an asshole, and I don’t want to hear from you. In this particular case I think it’d useful to have the filtering be fine-grained, as in, rather than just filtering everyone who followed one account, you’d filter them if they followed Account 1 AND Account 2 AND Account 3 (and so on). It would also be useful to be able to do this more than once, i.e., have more than one follower filter, because often it’s not just one group being annoying.

(4) THE HAMMER. Robot6 asks “Are you worthy to wield this Thor’s Hammer Tool Kit?”

Noting a serious lack of geek-themed hardware, Dave Delisle came up with an idea for a tool set to tackle virtually any home-repair project in the Nine Realms, even the famed clogged drains of Jotunheim.

As you can see, the Thor Hammer Tool Kit looks like the fabled Mjolnir, until it’s opened to reveal a claw hammer, wrench, screwdriver, socket set and so on.

Click through to see an animated gif that makes it all clear.

(5) UNREADY PLAYER ONE. Science Fiction.com reports “’Ready Player One’ Moves Release Date To Dodge ‘Star Wars’”.

And now that the release date for Rian Johnson’s ‘Star Wars: Episode VIII’ has officially moved from May 2017 to December 15, 2017, it looks like even the legendary Steven Spielberg is jumping out of the way in hopes of not getting steamrollered.

According to Variety, the iconic filmmaker’s latest film ‘Ready Player One’ will push back it’s release date to March 30, 2018. Originally slated for December 15, 2017, the movie based on Ernest Cline’s acclaimed nostalgia-filled sci-fi adventure has vacated that spot to give a galaxy far, far away some space. After all, they definitely don’t want to end up like Tina Fey and Amy Poehler’s ‘Sisters’, which went up against J.J. Abrams’ highly anticipated blockbuster during this past holiday season and didn’t stand a chance against the intergalactic juggernaut.

(6) A MUNDANE YEAR FOR GRAMMY. The 2016 Grammy Award winners didn’t have much of genre interest. I’m really going to have to stretch a point…

Best pop duo/group performance

“Uptown Funk”: Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars

Although the music video for the song wasn’t a Grammy nominee, it’s the main reason I’m reporting any of these awards, because fannish actor Ed Green appears in the background of it beginning at :25 — he’s on the left, speaking on the pay phone. (He also appears at right, below, in the title frame.)

Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media

Birdman

Antonio Sanchez, composer

Then, Jimmy Carter won the Best Spoken Word Album category, where Janis Ian was also a nominee.

(9) ONLY IN IT FOR THE PUN. The Telegraph says “BBC to axe television and radio divisions as part of radical management overhaul”.

Lord Hall, the director-general of the BBC, will not replace Danny Cohen, the corporation’s recently departed director of television, and is instead moving ahead with radical plans to abolish the broadcaster’s radio and television divisions.

“’Doc Martin’ and ‘Doctor Who’ to be combined into new programme, ‘Doc Who’,” reports Andy Porter.

(10) LE GUIN. Ursula K. Le Guin continues answering people’s questions about writing in “Navigating the Ocean of Story (2)” at Book View Café.

Do you consider it a good idea to offer your work in progress to numerous and/or unselected critics? If so, how do you decide which criticisms are valid and useful?

To offer work for critique to an unselected group on the Net, people who remain strangers, is to extend trust to absolute strangers. Some of them will take advantage of the irresponsibility afforded by the medium.

Here’s my advice, for what it’s worth: Don’t do it unless you’ve considered the risks. Pay attention to any comment that really makes sense to you; value any intelligent praise you get. That’s about as far as trust can take you. Keep an eye out for know-it-alls who make like critics, spouting secondhand rules. And remember some may be there because they want to make soup out of your bones.

This is not the voice of experience. I never gave my work to strangers to criticize in first draft or at any stage. I never submitted a piece to an editor or agent until it was, to the best of my knowledge and ability, finished.

(11) TODAY IN HISTORY

  • February 16, 1923 – Archeologists opened the tomb of Tutankhamen in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings.

(12) TODAY’S BIRTHDAY GIRL

  • Born February 16, 1958 – Lisa Loring, the actress who played Wednesday Addams in the original Addams Family TV series.

Lisa Loring as Wednesday Addams

(13) TODAY’S BIRTHDAY BOYS

  • Born February 16, 1926 – Rusty Hevelin
  • Born February 16, 1957 – LeVar Burton, Jr., who played ST:TNG’s Geordi LaForge.

(14) CHAOS HORIZON. Chaos Horizon comments on the final SFWA 2015 Best Novel Recommended Reading List. It’s interesting that only six novels have more than 20 recommendations.

Gannon [Raising Caine] and Schoen [Barsk] have shot up this list like rockets, going from nowhere in November to dominating by the end. Those 34 and 33 numbers are so impressive it’s hard to imagine them not getting Nebula nominations at this point. Overall, there were 728 total recommendations; that has to represent a substantial amount of the final Nebula nomination vote. Gannon and Schoen will raise some eyebrows if they get nominations; these SF books certainly got less press, acclaim, and online discussion than other SF books like Sevenves or Aurora. The Nebula is quirky like this, often favoring smaller authors over the big names. If they get nominated, I think the question is whether or not one of those books can win. Will Gannon follow the McDevitt route—get nominated enough and eventually you’ll win? Will Barsk grab a ton of new readers and take the Nebula? I think there’s a definite advantage to being fresh in your voters’ minds.

(15) WRIGHT BACKS HIS BEST EDITOR. John C. Wright adds his endorsement to the Rabid Puppy slate.

The Puppy-kickers are our ideological foes bent on replacing popular and well crafted sci fi tales with politically correct science-free and entertainment-free moping dreck that reads like something written by a highschool creative writing course dropout.

The Puppy-kickers have repeatedly and vehemently assured us assured us that soliciting votes from likeminded fans for stories you judge worthy was a “slate” and therefore was (for reasons not specified) totally and diabolically evil and wrong and bad, was not something insiders had been doing for decades, and was always totally inexcusable, except when they did it, and voted in a slate to grant ‘No Award’ to categories where they had lost their stranglehold over the nominations.

In that spirit, I hereby officially announce in my capacity as the Grand Inquisitor of the Evil Legion of Evil Authors, that the following list is the recommended reading list of our Darkest Lord only, and not a voting slate.

These are the recommendations of my editor, Theodore Beale, aka Vox Day, the most hated man in Science Fiction, but certainly the best editor I have had the pleasure to work with.

(16) MESSAGE FREE. Those who feel the yarn is the most important thing may find themselves voting for this —

Geeknits

(17) MILLENNIALS. “Millennial Fans: An Interview with Louisa Stein (Part Two)” conducted by Henry Jenkins at Confessions of an Aca-Fan.

Many of the shows you write about as Millennial programs are also shows with strong female leads and targeted at female consumers — Friday Night Lights would be a notable exception on your list. So, what happens to the gendering of fandom as we move towards Millennial fan culture? 

Issues of gender permeate millennial culture, fan culture, and the relationship between the two. Masculinizing—or feminizing—fan culture has been one way industry interests tame fandom’s perceived unruliness. Seemingly masculine forms of fandom (and I would emphasize that these areas, like gender itself, are social constructs) have already been categorized as industrially legible and profit friendly. The fanboy stereotype has its share of taboo associations, going all the way back to the “Get a Life” bit on Saturday Night Live that Textual Poachers opens with; but the fanboy position has since been spun into industry heralded narratives of superfans and fanboy auteurs (see Scott, Kohnen), with the lines toward brand support and profit already clearly delineated.

Obsession_inc (and many others citing her) have termed this divide “affirmational fandom,” versus “transformative fandom,” with the latter perceived as more the practice of female consumers who transform media texts into art and fiction, often in so doing significantly changing their meaning. In Millennial Fandom, I actually argue that transformational and affirmational fandom are more deeply intertwined than we might at first assume, but nevertheless, at a discursive level, the distinction helps us to see why and how transformative (perceived “feminine”) practices have been and continue to be treated as suspect, marked as taboo, and policed.

(18) AQUA JODHPURS. “Our first good look at Jason Momoa’s full Aquaman costume comes from ToyFair” at Yahoo! TV.

Then along came ToyFair 2016. Ahhhh, good old ToyFair. Hosted in New York City at the beginning of each year, the convention showcases the best of upcoming merchandise to look forward to. It’s also ALWAYS good for a spoiler or two. One of this year’s was a complete look at Jason Momoa’s costume in Batman v Superman, complete with colors. Behold!

The tattoos on Aquaman’s chest appear to continue onto his pants(?) which are a murky green. The better to blend into the ocean floor with. Of course, the camo look is marred by the bright gold knee-highs, but a king has to make concessions for style. I’m curious if Aquaman’s asymmetrical armor has a backstory is just there to look cool. Also, he is totally standing in rubble. Could it be that Wonder Woman isn’t the only superhero to show up at the end to clean up Batman and Superman’s mess?

(19) SHATNER BOOK REVIEW. Ryan Britt at Tor.com says “William Shatner’s New Memoir Leonard is Surprising and Moving”.

Whether they’re in their Kirk and Spock guises, or just being themselves, it’s hard to prefer William Shatner to Leonard Nimoy. Nimoy just seems more comfortable and real of the two, whereas Shatner appears to be putting on airs. Over the years, William Shatner seems to have figured this out and embraced the fact that no one will ever totally take him seriously. All of this makes the publication of a memoir written by him about Leonard Nimoy both look like a cynical cash-grab and a disingenuous maneuver of faux-love.

But if you’re a Star Trek fan, or casually interested in Leonard Nimoy, Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship With a Remarkable Man reveals that not only is Shatner a good guy, but that Leonard Nimoy may not have been the cool one, and did in fact fight all sorts of demons both inside and out.

(20) CORREIA’S SCHOOL FOR BUSINESS. Larry Correia says “One Star Reviews Over Book Prices are Dumb”, which is absolutely true.

I know writers aren’t supposed to respond to reviews, but I’m not responding to this as a writer, I’m responding to it as a retired accountant.

I am the author in question. Your review doesn’t hurt anything except my overall average. You aren’t sticking it to the man. You aren’t harming the corporate fat cats. If you think the book sucks, give it one star. That’s awesome. That’s what the stars are for. But you don’t use one star to bitch about the price of eBooks. That just makes you look stupid. We shouldn’t still be having this conversation with anybody who isn’t a Bernie Sanders supporter.

Now, Accountant Hat on. This is pretty basic stuff. This is how basic costing works, not just for books, but quite literally everything. But today, we’ll talk about books, because your ridiculous review has pissed me off.  I’m going to dumb this down and keep it simple as possible.

The rest is a long but lighthearted lesson about the business of producing books that makes cost accounting entertaining. (I know you think I’m being facetious, which is why I need to say, no, I really found it entertaining.)

(21) ANOTHER OPINION ABOUT THE KENYON SUIT. Amanda S. Green at Mad Genius Club begins her “And the World Keeps Turning”  column: “I will give the same caveat here that Sarah gave in her post. I have not read the pleadings filed on Ms. Kenyon’s behalf. Nor have I read Ms. Clare’s books.”

On Friday of last week, the Guardian published an article that addresses, from Ms. Clare’s point of view. Two things stood out for me and, yes, I know I am paying attention to lawyer-speak but the attorney, John Cahill, does bring up some interesting questions. First, “the lawsuit failed to identify a single instance of actual copying or plagiarism by Cassie.”  The second is that Ms. Clare has been writing these characters and series, iirc, for ten years. That’s a long time to wait before filing suit and part of me wonders if the fact Ms. Clare’s series is being made into a television series wasn’t the impetus for the suit.

To be fair, the suit does allege that Ms. Clare, in her series, does, “employ a line of warriors who protect the normal world from demons”, both cover how “a young person becomes part of the Dark-Hunters’ (or Shadowhunters’) world after being saved by a gorgeous blond Dark-Hunter (or Shadowhunter)”, and “both Dark-Hunters and Shadowhunters have enchanted swords that are divinely forged, imbued with otherworldly spirits, have unique names, and glow like heavenly fire”.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I can think of any number of books, short stories, TV shows and movies that could fall under that description. Those are, indeed, story elements, but does it rise to the level of plagiarism and copyright infringement?

Green steps into the judge’s shoes, for at least a few sentences, to voice skepticism about the plaintiff’s case. Not having read the complaint, Green missed the opportunity to see its list of the statutes the judge is asked to apply. With the help of Google she could have tested lawyer Cahill’s argument, as well as her own doubts that the infringement is actionable.

(22) A MENU ALOFT. Rick Foss was interviewed by Leanna Garfield for her Tech Insider post “We’re in a golden age of airplane food – for some people”.

When American Airlines recently launched a 15-hour direct flight from Los Angeles to Sydney, Australia, it also debuted a new menu. Flight attendants offer first-class passengers complimentary glasses of 2010 Penfolds Grange Shiraz (normally $850 per bottle) and roasted sirloin steak with red wine sauce.

Travelers in the economy cabin are still only treated to peanuts (But hey, at least they now get complimentary spirits — quite the perk).

The improvements in first and business class have more to do with the economics of the airline industry than they do with a desire to provide better service, Richard Foss, culinary historian and author of “Food in the Air and Space: The Surprising History of Food and Drink in the Skies,” tells Tech Insider.

Foss has studied the history of airline food for over a decade, from the glory days in the ’70s when airlines served lobster to today’s inflight tuna sandwiches. Here’s a look at that history, and how airlines are trying to bring back the golden age of airline dining for high-paying passengers.

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

247 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 2/16/16 Think Pixel, Count Scroll

  1. Joe H

    I know she’s revised some of the Russian trilogy, because she wasn’t happy with it at the time, so the new version (s) are up on Closed Circle. She is remarkable!

  2. Stevie — Yep, those (the Closed Circle revisions) are the ones I’m currently reading. Although I do love the cover art on the original versions.

  3. Kurt Busiek on February 17, 2016 at 6:12 pm said:
    So maybe it’s just me, but when I hear people saying it’s unrealistic, it’s not that they’re saying it can’t happen anywhere in the world, just that there’s no meaningful path toward accomplishing it here within two Presidential terms.

    It’s not just you … President Obama, for a brief period in 2009, had both houses of Congress in Dem hands, plus a filibuster proof 60 D’s in the Senate. He used that to get the ACA passed, but he STILL couldn’t get an OPTION to have a government run, Medicare-like plan part of the choices available.

    I love what Bernie is saying, but AT BEST, the Senate MIGHT flip back to Dems, while the House is pretty much going to be in GOP hands due to the 2010 gerrymandering until the next census in 2020. So, yeah, turning us into Denmark ain’t gonna happen.

    Incremental improvements, sure. Medicare for all while destroying the private insurance industry? Not gonna happen. That is ‘way more disruptive than the ACA is, and look at all the howling still going on.

    Plus, to say that Bernie is glossing over the real cost of his plan is an understatement. He has a magic asterisk in there that would make Paul Ryan blush.

  4. Elisa: I remember back when I could use the fact that a book had a Harriet Klausner quote on the cover as a sure sign the book was, at best, a very underdeveloped, poorly structured “first” novel. More likely it was going to be complete drek. Those reviews were such word salad. Sort of like golden age book covers. The components were genre relevant but put together wrong and with no regard for what the book was actually about.

    I’d never heard of her until a couple of years ago, when I went to post a review of a book I’d just read, and found one of her reviews on it.

    I read her review and went, “WTF????” because it was if she had read a completely different book than I had. Then I noticed an “X comments” tag under it, which I clicked, to find a couple of other reviewers reading her the Riot Act for her phony, meaningless reviews. Then I Googled, and all became clear.

    I was really mystified as to why someone was being celebrated for producing prodigious amounts of crap. I mean, they put her on the cover of Time magazine and wrote an article lionizing her, FFS!

    And then some internet “investigators” discovered that she’d been selling all those books through her son’s account on Half.com; if the number of reviews was any indication, the estimate was that at $7 a book, she was making $20,000 a year.

    It just all seems so incredibly sad and pathetic.

  5. @Tasha Turner:

    If I were to hazard a guess, last year it was probably between 30 and 40% female and the rest males, though I could probably give you a more precise figure in a couple of days, as I make a list each year of what I’ve read, with a grade, so I can look for more books by authors new to me that I liked.

    It’s kind of hard to answer the question definitively unless you narrow it down to novels/collectionsnon-fiction, because I read a lot of short fiction and I don’t keep track of that. Suffice to say, if it was published online by The Usual Suspects (Lightspeed, Tor.com, et cetera) odds are good I at least started it and probably read it if it was new.

    I don’t think I could give you a solid breakdown on POC without checking, because I honestly don’t notice. I can sometimes guess, but I don’t really try. I mean, for example, I re-read Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower and another of her novels last year. This year, I finally got around to reading 12 Years a Slave and My Bondage and My Freedom, so those are fairly easy to count. But I just don’t take that into consideration when I’m reading.

    This is going to sound facetious, but it’s true. I read Supreme Court opinions for relaxation. I try to read every one of Clarence Thomas’s opinions regardless, because it’s fascinating to me how one individual can figure out ways to twist almost any case around so that the “facts” conform to their worldview. His opinions read like boilerplate a lot of the time and I read them because 90% of the time, it’s like reading a cheap mystery novel. You know the ending (the butler did it) but what hoops he jumps through to get to the conclusion often defy description. It’s a wonder he doesn’t strain his frontal lobe with some of the mental gymnastics! So does Thomas count as a POC? Do SCOTUS opinions count at all?

    A lot of what I read boils down to chance. I finally got around to reading Jonathan Strange andd Mr Norrel (sp?) last year and the last Karen Joy Fowler novel (We Are all Beside…) and I re-read a Connie Willis collection. I also finally got to several Ellison collections last year and read them, purely because they came up in the “stack” When an author dies, I usually re-read some of their work. I’m reading Letters To Tiptree now because a number of people recommended it here so I bought the ebook. I didn’t buy it because Tiptree was a woman, but because she was one of the top two or three writers who started roughly in the 1970s and I love her stuff.

    My, but this has gotten long (even for me)! I’m afraid that I probably didn’t give you a good a response as your question deserves, but it’s the best I can do at the moment. I’ll go stand in the corner now. 😉

  6. But then I’m one of those terrible speed readers too.

    The only issue with speed reading is that it is generally content based. At a high rate of speed, you don’t generally appreciate things like subtext, nuance and writing style.

    Huzzah and well-deserved for Cherryh!

    Ditto here. She’s always been one of my idols.

  7. The original Rusalka etc covers were by the late great Keith Parkinson, whose first book included “how I pitch a concept to an art director” which I followed very closely when I was a tiny noob, and discovered rapidly that it produced incredibly gratified art directors who didn’t care if the art was mediocre, because they knew exactly what they were getting and exactly how far along it was and it made them so happy they didn’t have to guess that I kept getting gigs.

  8. @JJ, up thread you mentioned you ranted about Gannon’s Caine books, could you give me a link? I read Fire With Fire and it just didn’t work for me. I could never quite figure out why. When I saw it on the Nebula list I wondered what I had missed.

  9. @Robert Reynolds So does Thomas count as a POC? Do SCOTUS opinions count at all?
    Sure Thomas counts as POC. SCOTUS opinions count. I’ve only read a few*. I end up wanting to throw stuff too much when reading them. It’s my life they are playing games with. But I can see reading them the way you do. I’m sure it would be better for my blood pressure and heart if I could see the humor in them. Good answer even if it didn’t quite answer the question.

    Short stories/magazines/anthologies I’m much less sure what my reading percentages are although I buy more which are specific to women, POC, LGBTI, there is lots free I read as well as small presses I support which aren’t 50/50. So just books when I’m talking my percents for reading and until I started tracking I though I was closer to 50/50 male/female on books but according to Goodreads I’ve been reading more women for years.

    I now take the time to check out authors as the publishing bias is only going to change if we make it clear we want to read diverse authors on diverse ideas and cultures and myths and points of view. I want to reach the point that when I say I just grab a book it doesn’t matter who the author is there is a 50%+ chance the book I pick up is written by a women, non-western, POC, LGBTI, disabled, over 55, some combo, something I’ve left off, as it is to be written by a SWM. This would reflect the world I live in. I think it would make for a richer SFF. This wouldn’t limit books by SWM it would open up to more readers & more books by everyone.

    ETA:* outside of my political science classes.

  10. @Tasha Turner:

    I suspect the reason I don’t really care about such things is that I’m disabled and have been since birth. The first school I went to was a pre-school for disabled children and the students cut across groups. Boy, girls, white, black, you name it, we probably had it. I met a cross-section of society there because that was literally the only school any of those kids could attend. I was in the first “mainstreaming” group in my state. My mom had to get a waiver for me to attend second grade at the school not two blocks from home because the resource room was for blind students and wasn’t equipped to take my kind of physical disability.

    The district made me do home schooling after that while the mainstreaming program was put together by the state (probably because I was basically going to be a lab rat when it started and they didn’t want to taint the results).

    Thank you for a most enjoyable and thought-provoking exchange.

    I know what it’s like to be dismissed, so I don’t think in those terms. I learned a long time ago that it’s better to look at the world as though everyone is just a trifle out in left field than burst a blood vessel every time someone treats me like I’m stupid because my legs don’t work like they’re supposed to work.

  11. BGrandrath: JJ, up thread you mentioned you ranted about Gannon’s Caine books, could you give me a link? I read Fire With Fire and it just didn’t work for me. I could never quite figure out why. When I saw it on the Nebula list I wondered what I had missed.

    I’ll just reproduce it here, rather than try to go look for it. Rot13ed for Spoilers; if you’ve read the first book and think you might want to read the second, stop reading before the ==>.

    V npghnyyl yvxrq nyy guerr obbxf va gur frevrf. V guvax gurl’er yvxr n “Guvaxvat Crefba’f 007 va Fcnpr”. Gurl’er terng nqiragherf, ohg abg zvaqyrff nqiragherf. Tnaaba vf irel, irel fzneg — va grezf bs haqrefgnaqvat rpbabzvpf naq cbyvgvpf naq zvyvgnel fgengrtl. Naq ur chgf gung vagb uvf cybgf va n frnzyrff jnl gung n aba-rkcreg pna haqrefgnaq.

    Crbcyr unir pbzcynvarq gung Pnvar Evbeqna vf n Znegl Fgh (Znel Fhr). V guvax gung’f ohyyfuvg — be ryfr lbh’q or nccylvat gung ynory gb gur znwbevgl bs FS nqiragher svpgvba bhg gurer. Naq Tnaaba qbrf n qrprag wbo bs jevgvat fgebat, fzneg srznyr punenpgref.

    Ohg… gurer’f n fprar va gur obbx jura n jbzna trgf erfphrq, naq fur vf qrfpevorq pbzvat bhg bs ure fgnfvf ohooyr — *yvgrenyyl* — yvxr “Irahf ba gur unys-furyy”. Bu, SSF.

    Naq va gur svefg obbx, n xrl cybg cbvag vf gung ur’f tbg n puvyq ur qbrfa’g xabj nobhg, ol n jbzna jvgu jubz ur unq na nssnve, orpnhfr va n gvzr jura Rnegu fpvragvfgf unir anfprag vagrefgryyne geniry, gurl fgvyy qba’g unir pbagenprcgvir vzcynagf juvpu cerirag hacynaarq puvyqera. Frevbhfyl?

    ==> Naq gur jbefg cneg vf, va gur frpbaq obbx, n xrl cybg cbvag vf gung n *qvssrerag* jbzna (uvf frphevgl thneq) jvgu jubz ur vf univat na nssnve vf, haorxabjafg gb uvz — *certanag*. NTNVA. V zrna, V’z jvyyvat gb bireybbx gur hfr bs fhpu n ynzr cybg qrivpr bapr (nzvqfg zhpu rlr-ebyyvat), ohg GJVPR? Ernyyl???

    Jung’f rira jbefr guna gung, cebsrffvbanyvfz naq pbzcrgrapr nccneragyl nera’g rabhtu zbgvingvba sbe uvf uvtuyl-pbzcrgrag frphevgl thneq gb svtug gb gur qrngu gb trg gb uvz gb cebgrpg uvz, fur arrqf gur certanapl gb *ernyyl* zbgvingr ure – whfg fb fur pna gryy uvz nobhg gur certanapl naq gur puvyq ur’f ybfvat nf fur yvrf gurer qlvat. Bu, cyrnfr.

    Ng yrnfg gur guveq obbx qbrfa’g chyy nal fvzvyne purnc fghagf.

    But other than that, hey, I genuinely really enjoyed the trilogy. 😉

    My personal impression, both from my encounters with them and what I’ve seen other people say, is that both Gannon and Schoen are really wonderful people who are pleasant and fun to be around and well-liked, they write really enjoyable fiction but neither of them has won a Nebula, and I think that gives them a bit of a boost in the Nebula rankings. I personally love Schoen’s Buffalito stories, though I haven’t read Barsk yet.

  12. I’d never heard of [Harriet Klausner] until a couple of years ago, when I went to post a review of a book I’d just read, and found one of her reviews on it.

    I remember her from rec.arts.mystery back in the old Usenet days. Klausner didn’t write reviews: she wrote blurbs. Every book was the best she ever [supposedly] read!

  13. Just counted up my f/t for last year, and it comes to 11.5 / 44. (The total is down noticeably from the year before; I blame having gotten caught up in following the Kerpupple, here.) My POC/t is 5 / 44, although there is some question of how I count The Dark Forest, which had a POC original author but a translator who was not. (The number above is based on counting the original author but not the translator for both volumes.)

    My f/t is a bit better this year so far, owing to having just finished the new Bujold and the new Duane: 4/6. POC/t is 1/6.

    Not making any changes to my reading plans for the year ahead, just offering up some data.

  14. @Robert Reynolds
    I’ve enjoyed the exchange also.

    I know what it’s like to be dismissed, so I don’t think in those terms. I learned a long time ago that it’s better to look at the world as though everyone is just a trifle out in left field than burst a blood vessel every time someone treats me like I’m stupid because my legs don’t work like they’re supposed to work.

    Everyone is somewhere in left field. Or maybe right. Their out in a field that’s for sure. 😉

    Over the past 49 years I go through cycles. For days, weeks, months, years I’ll be calm. Then something will tip the balance and for days, weeks, months, years I’ll be a bit loud. Then something tips me back to calm. Cycle repeats.

  15. @nickpheas:

    and a lot of the post RZ Amber continuation books.

    Hahaha – these don’t exist. Nice try, Satan!

    @Dann: I think I mentioned that I used to be a libertarian. In my experience, a lot of libertarians don’t actually know much about economics – they know the high points of Econ 101 on a Bible Stories for Young Readers level and confuse it with economics as such. Economics is a real field of study. (Yes, there are some libertarian economists out there, but also liberal economists, progressive economists and, yes, social-democratic economists.) Bernie has more MMT people in his entourage than I’m strictly comfortable with, but even MMT isn’t as insane as goldbuggery, and right-libertarianism and the GOP are rife with goldbugs these days.

    As a general point, not to turn this whole thread into politics when we have crucial matters to attend to like forgetting the existence of certain books by John Gregory Betancourt, claims that Sanders’ program is unrealistic are unrealistic. Precisely because the GOP has a lock on the House of Representatives until at least 2020.

  16. tg:

    It’s not just you … President Obama, for a brief period in 2009, had both houses of Congress in Dem hands, plus a filibuster proof 60 D’s in the Senate. He used that to get the ACA passed, but he STILL couldn’t get an OPTION to have a government run, Medicare-like plan part of the choices available.

    I wasn’t saying I was the only one to think Sanders doesn’t have much of a chance of building his dream, but that I think when the news/pundits call his goals unrealistic, I interpret it to mean “it’s unrealistic to expect it to happen here, in the near future,” rather than what was being suggested, which was a denial that Norway and Sweden exist.

    Since many analysts point out that Sanders has European models in mind, they’re acknowledging that his financial model can and does work. What they’re saying is unrealistic is the idea that it can be slomped down on the US with the populace and the halls of government either embracing it or being overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of those who do.

    If we’re ever going to get to that kind of model, we’re going to get there slow. And we’re going to start with more modest goals, like a liberal-leaning Court, an end to gerrymandering from both parties, and other such smaller-but-still-difficult steps.

  17. There are no Amber continuation books.

    I sometimes bounce off Elizabeth Bear’s novels, but really loved Karen Memory. I thought the steampunk elements were convincing and well woven into the larger story, the characters were vivid and interesting and the action sequences were exciting. It’s not for everyone and could use a trigger warning, but it’s going on my longlist.

    I started Letters to Tiptree today and keep finding myself strangely moved by the letters themselves. I hope the remainder of the book continues to be brilliant.

  18. @alexvdl – Please pass on a big derby high-five to your wife from me, along with a warm hello from the Boulder County Bombers (Colorado). I am not familiar with the Washington/Baltimore area in that context, and wouldn’t mind hearing where she ends up and what she thinks of it.

    re: Godzilla filx-
    Pixelly scrolls again and again while puppyish trolls all holler and spin…
    FILE-ZILLA!

  19. @Lela: Nope, I just read really really fast. I broke the test in 6th grade. So I DO notice style, subtext, and word usage; bad grammar and punctuation shows up EVEN WORSE to me when I have to stop and backtrack because the sentence made no damn sense. And good style and prose make me stop and reread to savor them. Larry’s stuff… I didn’t have to stop and go back for either reason.

    Me and the Nebulas are NOT going to agree this year, that’s for sure. Gannon makes my eyes glaze over, and while I’ve loved every short work by Schoen I’ve read (I want a buffalito), I rilly rilly hated “Barsk” and was entirely in sympathy with the villains by the end.

  20. MMT?
    Modern Monetary Theory – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modern_Monetary_Theory

    Here is Paul Krugman disagreeing with them http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/08/15/mmt-again/?_r=0

    Like all economic theories it goes like this:
    Plausible premise, to which you go – sure, that sounds reasonable
    Insightful premise, to which you go – yeah, I can see that,. Now I feel like I understand the world a bit better.
    Corollary, to which you go – um, what?
    Extended corollary, to which you go – that is beginning to sound like you are claiming magic beans exist

  21. @lurkertype: wow, someone else who reads the way I do. Did you start at an unusually young age too? I’m pretty sure that was a factor in my case.

    (That and being raised by a pair of voracious readers.)

  22. @Xtifr, lurkertype:

    Add me to your “fast, not speed, reader” tribe. I started reading at the age of two and haven’t really stopped since. 🙂 (One of my earliest memories is of correcting my mother’s pronunciation of “pachyderm.”)

    Skipping over bad punctuation and grammar is very much not a thing that I do. In these days of plentiful ebooks, I’m more likely to compile a “fix list” that I can then use to correct egregious errors in my copies… and if the author’s an indie who likes to hear about them, I’ll happily share. Why wouldn’t I?

  23. @xtifr: I think the default test is “How did you do when reading ‘Feersum Endjinn’?”. I tripped every time the POV switched to Bascule.

    I can’t remember not being able to read, and certainly had no problems reading when I started primary school just before I turned five. My test breakage was age 7 when the reading age test ran out at 13.

  24. I’m both a fast reader and a speed reader. Speedreading, I reserve for news articles. Scanning the text blockwise for keywords that will help me separate facts from opinions and help me see what is separates one article for the other hundreds on the same subject I have read.

    For fiction, I’m merely quite fast.

  25. I’ve never done a reading speed test. I think I can read fairly quickly, but it depends on what the material is, my purpose with reading it, my mood, etc.

    I do recall one incident, though, when I was about 15 or so – the nearby university had an “open day” where different departments were showing off fun things they were doing, including how computers were being used in language-related research – speech synthesis to assist people with vocal issues, for instance (this was in the 1980s). One other thing was a program that would show only a sliding window into the text you were trying to read. A small group were seated in front of the screen and reading aloud for as long as we could follow; it started about 20 characters wide or so, advancing slowly through the text, everyone reading aloud in unison. Then the window started both speeding up (advancing through the text more quickly) and narrowing (showing fewer characters, so you could no longer perhaps see each entire word at a time), and as things progressed, voices started dropping out. I stopped reading aloud when I became embarrassed to be the only one still speaking.

    Fun times.

  26. Hampus Eckerman: And I refused to read Feersum Endjinn. Brrrrr!

    So far I’ve only read The Algebraist, but eventually I want to read the rest of Banks’ novels. I just read the Wikipedia entry for Feersum Endjinn… and I… I don’t think I can do it. I think it would break my brain.

  27. I’ve read about 7-8 of Banks books and as yet, Feersum Enjinn was the only one I couldn’t finish.

  28. Re Betancourt. I am sure he’s a nice chap, but prequels to the Amber novels don’t exist for me.

  29. Feersum Enjinn (or Stoopid Titul as Dave Langford called it) – the trick is to read the phonetic bits in a Scottish accent – I think it must be an Irvine Welsh pastiche, basically – and you just fly through it.

    Cherryh – such brilliant news. If people were looking for a place to start, I’d try Merchanter’s Luck. It’s a neat, fast-paced stand-alone, nowhere near as heavy-going as, say, Downbelow Station or her Morgaine books (which as awesome, though.)

  30. the trick is to read the phonetic bits in a Scottish accent

    That sort of thing is actually what slows me down, normally when I’m reading there’s no connection between words and their sounds. I’m quite happy to watch performances of Shakespeare plays but bounce off reading them, same for a lot of Victorian era novels that to me seem to be intended to be read aloud in the drawing room.
    And I don’t think I’ve ever had a child ask me to read them a story more than once…

  31. Just in case anyone wondered: John has tremendous respect for Mr. Hartwell, whom he admired, appreciated working with, and liked as a person.

    But Mr. Hartwell almost never made any changes to John’s manuscripts.

  32. But Mr. Hartwell almost never made any changes to John’s manuscripts.

    Cheapest of cheap shots – not even to add an extra chapter five?

  33. But Mr. Hartwell almost never made any changes to John’s manuscripts.

    Funny JCW never said that while David Harwell was alive and could have commented.

    But good editors do more than edit manuscripts. They find authors, they fight for them to be published, they make sure the books get good covers, marketing, PR, as well as other intangible support to the author. They take flack from the public for choices they make. I know David Hartwell said supportive things on JCWs blog during the SP/RP campaigns as I read them. He put himself publicly out there willing to take criticism for JCW. That’s something a good editor does if they believe in their author.

    Does none of that count?

  34. I agree with LC that one should not give 1 star reviews to ebooks because of their price, especially if one has not even read the book. <rant> Having said that, I’m annoyed with HarperCollins for apparently putting Neil Gaimon’s Trigger Warning on sale today for $1.99 at only Amazon. If they are going to put it on sale at one retailer in a proprietary format, they ought to be putting it on sale at the retailers with the other proprietary formats. It’s like they only want Amazon to succeed at selling ebooks. I’d one-star that publisher if I could. If I could one-star only a particular edition at Amazon and elsewhere, I’d do it, and I’d do it for this particular book, because the sale price of the paperback at Amazon and B&N is about $1 less than the price of the ebook, thanks to agency pricing. I blame Steve Jobs for facilitating agency pricing, and I hope they lose their appeal with the Supreme Court. (OTOH, yay Tim Cook for his stance on decrypting Apple phones. The FBI is sooo wrong on this). </rant>

  35. The throwaway denigration of Mr. Hartwell is one of those things that really gets to me. His history-of-the-field anthologies for both sf and horror were hugely influential in my intellectual development, and for decades I hoped that someday I might write something that would be worth his editing. There simply isn’t a universe where Beale begins to compare, and that casual dismissal of one of the finest talents sf ever had…rankles.

  36. “But good editors do more than edit manuscripts. They find authors, they fight for them to be published, they make sure the books get good covers, marketing, PR, as well as other intangible support to the author.”

    But no one has asked me about that, and I have made no comment about it, so there is no use pretending that I made such a comment. It certainly no use pretending that I made an insulting or disrespectful comment about Mr.Hartwell, for whom I have nothing but gratitude, respect and love.

    Mr. Hartwell is not listed as the best editor with whom I have worked because he did not edit my manuscripts.

    That work was done by his assistants, Mr. Jim Minz. Mr. Moshe Feder, and Mr. Marco Palmieri, for whom I have great respect, and, of their work with me, no complaints.

    The other things Mr. Hartwell did of course I remember with gratitude and joy, (not the least of which was publishing NULL-A CONTINUUM) but no one was talking about that. You made that part up, just now, in order to have an unconvincing excuse to continue to level false accusations at me.

    You now want to make believe that my original comment (which was about Vox Day’s skilled manuscript editing) was actually about something else (David Hartwell’s other work, which is not editing properly so called).

    But you did not bother to find out my opinion on any of these matters. You merely invented whatever would make me seem most hateful in your eyes, and pretended that I held those opinions, even though you know damn well I do not.

    What a horrible, horrible life you must lead that you read a perfectly innocent comment as if it is some terrible insult, and when your misreading is corrected, in order to cling to your hate, your brain-destroying, soul-destroying hate, you invent a falsehood to believe out of thin air, and you believe this falsehood, knowing it to be false, merely to justify and continue the hatred.

    Stop mocking the dead. Stop spitting on the grave of a man I (and everyone who knew him) admired and loved. Such behavior is subhuman.

    Get a grip on yourself.

  37. Could someone make me one of today’s Lucky 10,000 and tell me the derivation for this thread’s title? It’s probably really obvious, and I’ll bonk myself in the forehead for not getting it…but I’m not getting it. And there aren’t enough non “Pixel” and “Scroll” words for Google to help me.

  38. @steve davidson

    except they aren’t well-aimed. The model he is endorsing (presumably suitably jiggered for ‘murika) is essentially the same as that employed by thriving european nations.

    Sort of depends on which “thriving european nations” he has in mind. Almost uniformly, the examples that get tossed my way are nations that experimented with having much more “progressive” social welfare policies and learned the truth of Lady Thatcher’s aphorism the hard way. They ended up moving their economies back towards a truly progressive free market approach that isn’t significantly different** from what we have in the U.S. right now.

    I think SINO covers them nicely….Socialist In Name Only.

    **obviously debatable and perhaps far afield at this point.

    @Jim Henley

    I think I mentioned that I used to be a libertarian.

    I was unreasonably libertarian for quite a while. I got over it. At this point I’d prefer just a slight reduction in the size/scope of government. I’m sure that Bernie would consider that pretty extreme.

    ————

    In general, I find the responses that are variations on the theme of “oh but the GOP….” to be less than persuasive. I’m willing to consider any moderate candidate. Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Sanders are so far left of center as to be self-disqualifying. For the moment John Kasich has my support.

    Regards,
    Dann

  39. @John C Wright

    Stop mocking the dead. Stop spitting on the grave of a man I (and everyone who knew him) admired and loved. Such behavior is subhuman.

    No-one – including yourself – is doing that here. Get a grip on yourself.

  40. Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Sanders are so far left of center as to be self-disqualifying. For the moment John Kasich has my support.

    If you think Clinton is far left of center, your Overton window is really well-out in right field.

  41. Mr. Wright, we are expressing contempt for your judgement in declaring Mr. Beale a better editor than Mr. Hartwell.

    HTH, HAND (Hope this helps, have a nice day)

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