Pixel Scroll 11/13/17 And So Pixels Made Of Sand Scroll Into The Sea, Eventually

(1) TOWARDS ST. J.R.R. Supporters of sainthood for Tolkien have launched an appeal to crowdfund a 2018 conference in Oxford:

We’re raising £50,000 to fund a Conference for the formal opening of the Cause for Canonisation of J. R. R. Tolkien (1st-2nd September 2018) in Oxford.

This year has seen a special grace in the movement to Canonise J. R. R. Tolkien, with the first Mass being celebrated at the Oxford Oratory on the 2nd September 2017, calling for prayer for the cause for canonisation to be formally opened.

– The first Mass marked the 44th anniversary of Tolkien’s death. The cause is under the guidance of Fr Daniele Pietro Ercoli, a Salesian priest from the Diocese of Treviso (but as a Salesian belonging to the religious province of Triveneto).

The Conference would support a solemn Mass on the 2nd September 2018, and would last from Saturday 1st to Sunday 2nd. The purpose of the Conference would be to provide a cultural dialogue to advocate for the sanctity of Tolkien’s personal life, as well as how this was mediated through his artistic works. I have already secured as a keynote speaker Robert Colquhoun, the Vatican backed International Director of 40 Days for Life to speak on the theme of “The Conversion of England – Hobbits and grassroots activism: Fellowship will overcome the evil of abortion.” Linking Tolkien to the new evangelisation and the conversion of England in this way, I hope to situate Tolkien’s own faith as a creative response to the joys and sorrows of this generation and use the conference as means to seeing how Tolkien’s own faith can provide solutions.

(2) WHERE THE STREETS HAVE NO NAME. Turns out Google is in fact everywhere. On the tiny Faroe Islands, lacking many paved roads, they didn’t do “Street View” but instead “Sheep View”.

Last year, the Faroe Islands petitioned Google to be featured on Google Street View by creating our own version of the mapping system, using cameras mounted on the backs of sheep and calling it Sheep View. Now, just over a year later, we have succeeded in our aim – with Google announcing today that Google Street View now features the Faroe Islands.

The Sheep View campaign was launched in July 2017 by Faroes’ resident, Durita Dahl Andreassen, who wanted to share the beauty of her native islands with the rest of the world and, in turn, to petition Google to have the nation included on Google Street View. Together with a few friendly sheep equipped with solar-powered 360-degree cameras and the support of Visit Faroe Islands, Durita set out to collect images of the Faroe Islands that could be uploaded to Google Maps.

When the tech giant heard about the Sheep View project, they thought it was “shear brilliance” and, in August 2016, they supplied the Faroese with a Street View Trekker and 360-degree cameras via the Street View camera loan program so that residents and tourists alike could assist the sheep in capturing even more images of the beautiful archipelago, using selfie sticks, bikes, backpacks, cars, kayaks, horses, ships and even wheelbarrows.

Dave Doering sent the link with a note: “Despite being this tiny speck between Scotland and Norway, the place has two nice little bookstores. Just the place to pick up Lord of the Rings in Danish and relish the read amongst the sheep!”

(3) ORC VIEW.  Paul Weimer announced in comments, “In December, Alex ‘Tolkien Map killer’ Acks and I will be teaching one of Cat Rambo’s classes on fantasy maps” — “Mapping Fantasy with Alex Acks and Paul Weimer”. Here’s the description:

Fantasy maps can add extra dimensions to a work, showing the world the writer has created. But how do you create a map that both reflects that world and the basic laws of physics? Join Alex Acks and Paul Weimer as they talk about fantasy maps in order to give you the tools you need to create and map your world. Topics include basic geologic principles, common mistakes, forms maps can take, how maps reflect world view, and how maps change over time.

Saturday, December 16, 2017 9:30-11:30 AM Pacific time

(4) THE CASH REGISTER RINGS. Variety’s Joe Otteson, in “‘Lord of the Rings’ Series Moving Forward at Amazon With Multi-Season Production Commitment”, says that Amazon Studios has made a deal with the Tolkien Estate and Tolkien Trust to have The Lord of the Rings as a multi-season series, based on events before The Fellowship of the Ring and with a possible spinoff as part of the deal.

Set in Middle Earth, the television adaptation will explore new storylines preceding “The Fellowship of the Ring.” The deal also includes a potential additional spin-off series. The series will be produced by Amazon Studios in cooperation with the Tolkien Estate and Trust, HarperCollins and New Line Cinema, a division of Warner Bros. Entertainment.

“’The Lord of the Rings’ is a cultural phenomenon that has captured the imagination of generations of fans through literature and the big screen,” said Sharon Tal Yguado, head of scripted series for Amazon Studios. “We are honored to be working with the Tolkien Estate and Trust, HarperCollins and New Line on this exciting collaboration for television and are thrilled to be taking ‘The Lord of the Rings’ fans on a new epic journey in Middle Earth.”

The Amazon deal does not cover “The Silmarillion,” the third major work taking place in Tolkein’s Middle Earth and adjacent worlds, published after the author’s death.

(5) IN NAME ONLY. Meanwhile, Kurt Busiek has been brainstorming titles for the new production.

(6) TEA AND LIMITED SYMPATHY. Larry Correia was inspired by the kerfuffle over Patrick Rothfuss’ complaint reported here the other day (item #3) to write a few thousand words in “A Capitalist Novelist’s Guide to Fan Expectations and How Not To Be A Douche” for the readers of Monster Hunter Nation.

This isn’t an all or nothing, one side is right, the other is wrong thing. Like relative douchiness, it’s on a spectrum. So this is what this discussion looks like to me.

FAN: I am disappointed that author X has not finished his next book yet.

CORREIA: Yeah, buddy. I feel your pain.

FAN: I feel betrayed and will not buy any more of his X’s books!

CORREIA: I’m sorry you feel that way, but that’s your choice.

FAN: He owes me!

CORREIA: Whoa. Hang on now.

FAN: X has broken our unwritten moral contract that I have imposed on him!

CORREIA: Fuck that. Where’d I put my shotgun?

But if you thought this was a post about sympathizing with a beleaguered writer, no, this is a post about Larry:

I don’t know Rothfuss, but six years a book, personally I would be embarrassed.


  • November 13, 1992 Bram Stoker‘s Dracula premiered. This is the one starring Gary Oldman with the strange bouffant hairdo.


  • JJ found these Transylvanian travel reviews in by Tom Gauld.
  • Chip Hitchcock discovered a new bit of Star Trek headcanon in Red and Rover.

(9) LAD GENIUS. Other people’s wounds are beneath Dave Freer’s notice. His way of proving it is by devoting a Mad Genius column to them.

Mind you, just going over the top – as tens of thousands of men did, well, they probably all needed kilts. This – the trenches of Somme – shaped JRR Tolkien. This, in its way, made the LORD OF THE RINGS what it is. It’s a far, far cry from the caliber of self-elected ‘elite’ of modern sf and Fantasy, having tantrums because someone was so terribly, terribly, horribly awfully insensitive and used the term evil ice-cream name ‘tutti-frutti’ in the title of con talk. You have to laugh. We’ve passed through micro-aggressions, down through nano-aggressions, into pico-aggressions. And they’re demanding ‘respect’. I had a few orificers who demanded respect, back when I was in the army. They didn’t get it: it’s not something you can ‘demand’. It’s given, when it is earned.

(10) NOBODY OBJECTED. Meanwhile, Richard Paolinelli explains why he thinks it’s okay for him to call his book a Nebula nominee:

Anyone as desperate for affirmation as that, how long will it be ‘til we’re reading about Paolinelli’s Nobel Peace Prize nomination?

(11) MORE HOLLYWOOD HARASSMENT. Buzzfeed reports: “DC Comics Fires Longtime Editor Following Sexual Harassment Claims”. The decision came two days after Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment launched a review into revelations that Eddie Berganza was promoted despite allegations he forcibly kissed and tried to grope colleagues.

Berganza, a 25-year veteran at DC Comics, was a group editor who oversaw production of major titles, including Superman, Supergirl, and Wonder Woman. Before he was fired, he was overseeing Dark Knights: Metal, a special series that is reportedly one of DC’s biggest-selling titles at the moment.

Two women who worked at DC told BuzzFeed News that Berganza either forcibly kissed them, or attempted to do so, in the early to mid 2000s. Several people complained to the company’s human resources department in 2010, when Berganza was up for a promotion to executive editor. Berganza still received the promotion, but was demoted to group editor in 2012 after another woman said he kissed her without her consent at a comics convention

(12) TAKING ORDERS. Contrary to what you may have heard — “The Answer To Life, The Universe — And Everything? It’s 63”.

When it comes to figuring out the nature of physical reality, part of that process starts at the absolute edge of the observable universe — the cosmic horizon, a distant layer from which light has only just, in this very instant, managed to reach us after more than 13 billion years of racing through space.

This intangible boundary between the knowable and the unknowable is, at present, roughly a thousand, trillion, trillion meters across — should you possess the means to measure it.

At the other end, in the deepest innards of every single speck of cosmos, is a scale of a hundred billion, trillion, trillionths of a meter. It represents the last meaningful physical scale within our present understanding of physics, a place where space-time itself gets choppy, uncertain, and decidedly problematic.

These two extremes span a jaw-dropping 63 orders of magnitude.

(13) AFROFUTURISM. At The Root, “A Guide to Fantasy and Science Fiction Made for Black People, by Black People”.

Since the beginning of time, when we have not been included, we have created our own. HBCUs, black-owned businesses, black houses of worship, black social organizations and The Root itself are fruits of our resilience and creativity in the face of adversity. The books Afrofuturism: The World of Black Sci-fi and Fantasy Culture and The Encyclopedia of Black Comics are fantastic evidence of this rich hub of black art. To further elaborate, here is an inclusive (and intersectional) guide to black art and artists in the genre to support, ranging from emerging to longtime favorites.

(14) BLACK PANTHER. ComicsBeat says “These Black Panther character posters will make you wish it was February” – see the full set at the link.

(15) BREATHING NORMALLY. Camestros Felapton begins “Review: Star Trek Discovery – Episode 9” with a lefthanded compliment:

I kind of suspected that the crew would pull their act together for the mid-season finale and they certainly did. Genuinely exciting and not once did I let out an exasperated sigh. This was actually good.

Oh so many spoilers below as I go through what went right this time…

(16) FOOD COURT IN SESSION. Is this the long-delayed revenge for introducing the rest of the world to haggis? “Taco Bell to open first Scottish restaurant next month”.

Fast food giant Taco Bell has announced it will open its first restaurant in Scotland next month.

The Tex-Mex chain will open its doors in Glasgow on December 7, with a new outlet on Sauchiehall Street in city centre.

The first 100 people through its doors on the opening day will receive a free limited edition Taco Bell t-shirt.

There will also be four prizes of a year’s supply of Taco Bell handed out to fans of the chain, with more information to be announced across the company’s UK social media channels in the coming weeks.

(17) THE ACCIDENTAL SANTA. Beware, your heart will be warmed by this Marks & Spencer Christmas ad with Paddington.

[Thanks to Cat Eldridge, JJ, John King Tarpinian, Martin Morse Wooster, Chip Hitchcock, Dave Doering, Andrew Porter, and Carl Slaughter for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Xtifr.]

83 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 11/13/17 And So Pixels Made Of Sand Scroll Into The Sea, Eventually

  1. (6) The more years an author can take to write a book, it just shows how awesome they are. All the people waiting. Being able to afford taking that long. Just think, if a writer took a thousand years to finish her novel, she’d be practically immortal.

  2. (10) An open letter to Richard Paolinelli

    Dear Richard Paolinelli,

    Dude, please, seriously, just grow up, k? You’re being a bit douchy.

    With fondest regards,


  3. 11) People have wondered for years why Eddie Berganza was still allowed to work at DC.

    14) When we saw the Black Panther trailer at the Thor showing, Ann whispered to me that she had her Oscar choice for Best Costuming — pretty good since of course we have seen none of the 2018 movies yet, but she’s pretty convinced she won’t see anything better.

  4. JJ: Congratulations! Today’s Pixel Scroll has achieved a new record of 5 “Oh, FFS”

    See, and they say there’s no such thing as progress.

  5. (10) ahhhhh mystery solved! I had three weird tweets sent to me today – all from the same person who was very cross with me in the first, told me I had been muted in the second, and then demanded that as troll I should go away. Which in some ways is an everyday exchange on twitter for many BUT all three tweets occurred without a single interaction by me at all!

    Apparently I’m psychically and unconsciously trolling people now – I don’t even need internet access.

  6. @Camestros
    When I clicked on Paolinelli’s Twitter link, I noticed that I was blocked, which is odd, cause I’ve never interacted with him before.

    But I guess he’s blocking all Filers he can find. Fine by me.

  7. Cora on November 13, 2017 at 10:33 pm said:

    When I clicked on Paolinelli’s Twitter link, I noticed that I was blocked, which is odd, cause I’ve never interacted with him before.

    This is most unfair that you get this preferential treatment – I’m only muted.

  8. ===================================

    Galactic Poseur, 2018 Nebula* and Hugo† Nominee

    written by JJ, Nominee for the 2017 Damon Knight Grand Master Award ‡

    “You should totally buy this book! It is way better than my own science-fiction novel!!!” — Richard Paolinelli §

    * but not a finalist
    okay, nominations haven’t actually opened yet, but as soon as they do, I’m going to nominate myself
    I have confirmed that more than one SFWA member nominated me for this award
    § a close friend has reliably informed me that he actually said this

  9. (7) This is the one starring Gary Oldman with the strange bouffant hairdo.

    This is the one starring Gary Oldman with the strange butt-crack hairdo.


  10. 16) I hope the Scots don’t get the impression that is what Texas Mexico is supposed to taste like.

  11. (1) TOWARDS ST. J.R.R.

    “The Conversion of England – Hobbits and grassroots activism: Fellowship will overcome the evil of abortion.”

    Ah, yes, that’s what The Scouring of the Shire is all about. ?

    My initial reaction to this sainthood-process, when I first read about it a few weeks ago, was more “whatever” and less negative than (I think) most other people here – but I’ve now joined the ranks of eyerollers.

    (9) LAD GENIUS

    “I had a few orificers”

    I admit to spending several seconds wondering who that was supposed to be a slur against, before I realized that it’s just a weird spelling mistake.

  12. 1) Obviously, I have enormous amounts of respect for Tolkien – scholar of considerable and well-deserved reputation, constructed his own myth cycle, defined the shape of the fantasy genre, and so on and so forth – but sainthood? Seems a bit much.

    4) We’ve already had film and audio versions… I’m not sure a TV adaptation is either necessary or desirable. But who knows? It might turn out to be good. Possibly.

    10) No part of any of this story makes me burn with desire to read Paolinelli’s books. (Are they any good? Does anyone know?)

  13. 3) Thanks for the boost, Mr. Glyer. It’d be kinda embarassing if no one decides to sign up for the class…

    AS far as waiting for Author X to finish the next book in the series…my “secret”– read broadly as well as deeply. But I should understand and empathize that people who don’t have the wherewithal and privilege to read upwards of 80 books a year and really want to read the long delayed book in a series as a part of their limited reading time could be cross with an author who is turning in books very late.

  14. @Lis Carey We can from a club, the other cool kids, and the club house will have so much tea.

    SO. MUCH. TEA.

  15. I hope the Scots don’t get the impression that is what Texas Mexico is supposed to taste like

    Can you deep fry tacos?

  16. Mark: Wait, what? Oh, well. How … clever.
    (I see my attempt at an eyeroll emoji came out wrong so I won’t repeat that.)

    Paul Weimer:

    really want to read the long delayed book in a series as a part of their limited reading time

    I think it’s less about use of future reading time than it is about getting a proper “return on investment” for the time already spent on previous books.

    If you’re 8 books into a series like Wheel of Time, have discussed fan theories online since book 2, and have reread the first books multiple times, then you have invested a lot of time in that series. That time will feel much less well spent if the author never finishes the series and never get to find out exactly what that foreshadowing in book 3 means and which fan theory is right.

  17. @Johan The investment idea. Yeah. “I want my payoff!”

    This is a reason why I like for an “off ramp” in the first book in a series, the idea that I’ve gotten a full story and if I don’t want to continue the series, I do not need to do so for completion reasons. This is also more pointed when a series does not complete not because of the author, but because of sales and a publisher not picking up further volumes in a series.

  18. @Paul Weimer

    Ditto. I like the first in the series to be a fairly complete story (or sub-story I suppose) so I feel I can try it and then stop there if I want. I don’t have the same thing with later volumes though – once I’ve committed to a series I’m happy for it to all flow together later on.
    I’m trying a few series out at the moment and to be fair I find that most of them provide this – Updraft, Natural History of Dragons, and Court of Fives have all persuaded me to carry on with the series without resorting to a cheap cliffhanger that leaves any story incomplete.

  19. 10: Yet another reason why WSFS calls the people on the ballot “finalists” now and deprecated “nominee” except in a narrow technical sense of “written on the nominating ballot.”

  20. This Pixel Scroll seems to show that several people not only got touched with the stupid stick, but actually grabbed it and hugged it tightly to their body.

    1) Sainthood? Really?
    9) Words fail me on this one.
    10) Obviously, someone should really explain the difference between a recommendation and a nomination, thought I doubt it would help.
    16) One more sign of the coming apocalypse.

  21. @Anthony –

    Can you deep fry tacos?

    Probably. A local favorite in area is deep-fried mini “tacos”. Fold a circular tortilla chip over some ground beef and deep-fry. Serve with salsa and sour cream.

  22. When you say 5 FFS, do you mean ten? (As fives usually travel in pairs.)

    I’m not blocked as my diet includes plenty of fiber.

  23. Can you deep fry tacos?

    There’s a Salvadoran place just around the corner from my apartment that does fantastic deep-fried tacos. They are filled with meat and deep-fried, and then the fresh ingredients (queso, lettuce, whatever) is added after they come out of the deep fryer. So good.

    (4) @Steve Wright: it’s a prequel series, and apparently is not based on the Silmarillion (sp?), so who even knows what we’re going to get.

    I enjoyed the Peter Jackson films, although his adaptation The Hobbit killed all my enthusiasm for the only Tolkien *book* that I actually thought was any good.

    (10) My eyes are rolling so far back I can see the inside of my skull.

  24. @Johan P: I was also bewildered by the claim of “overcom[ing] the evils of abortion”. (I don’t think they meant getting rid of attempts to shutdown-by-regulation….) Now that it has simmered, I’m reminded of a pseudonymous essay by a fellow MITSFS member who amusingly argued that hobbits must have naturally low fertility, given the gap between physical adulthood and official coming-of-age (33); otherwise we’d be knee-deep in them.

  25. Chip Hitchcock:

    Or they only rarely engage in opposite-sex activities, and only for the purpose of procreation?

  26. The full-cast Black Panther poster is fantastic

    Not only is it a great poster design, it’s also really neat seeing so many black actors prestented togeather. In fact, the only white actors in the poster are Martin Freeman and Andy Serkis. Which is kind of a neat reunion after their work on the Hobbit films.

    They’re the Tolkien white guys on the poster.

  27. Anthony: Can you deep fry tacos?

    Are you kidding? That’s what Jack-in-the-Box tacos are.

    (Jack-in-the-Box being a hamburger restaurant chain.)

  28. @August: well, there’s all sorts of possibilities, aren’t there?

    THRILL! at the sight of Gondor declining into a hidebound relic of its past glories!
    TREMBLE! at the endless feuding of the Men of Rohan!
    GASP! as Radagast the Brown learns to talk to fieldmice!
    GAPE AND QUIVER IN AWE! as Bilbo Baggins digs himself a large comfortable hole!

  29. Not blocked either (would have been quite the surprise, because he would have put a lot of effort then)

    If you dont show us the way to the next pixelbar,
    I tell you we must file.

  30. alright, i am baffled and i gotta ask: does anyone know why Paeolinelli keeps referring to Mike as “China Mike”?

  31. @Reuben Poling

    It’s based on a claim by Larry Correia that Mike must need to buy in web hits from China as no-one really reads F770. A claim easily contradicted by the fact that we’re all here chatting away about what we’ve read.

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