Pixel Scroll 11/8/16 When We Scrolled The Pixels On Board, We Thought They Were Cute

(1) FAR FROM THE MADDING POLLING PLACE. In the market for non-election news? Cat Rambo has you covered at her blog.

As part of recent updates at SFWA we recently revamped the Nebula Recommended Reading list to show up in alphabetical order. It’s a stopgap measure until the website gets re-designed, and to my mind has some of the same problems as presenting by order of number of recommendations. In musing that over, I mentioned to webmaster Jeremy Tolbert that I looked forward to the new school of aardvarkpunk we were inspiring. A half hour later this story appeared in my head.

I thought, however, it would be useful perhaps for people grappling with novels to see what the last bits of work involve. I’ve been incorporating edits from the hardcopy manuscript but still have lots and lots of comments in the e-copy to address. In the process of adding those, I was able to look at the manuscript from a high-enough level that I could sort out all the chronology (oh dear GODDESS please let that statement be true, because that’s been the biggest pain in the rear so far) and make sure that everything made sense, that storylines were resolved, and that all the hidden plotlines got bubbled up in a meaningful way.

(2) SEE THESE SPOTS. Suzanne Johnson shares her knowledge of “Five Magical Spots in New Orleans” at Tor.com.

New Orleans is a place of myth and mysticism. It’s a city of rich, bon temps rouler party culture with a dark undercurrent of cynicism and violence. It’s the most haunted city in America (or so the tourism bureau would have you believe) and one of the most haunting cities for those who fall under its spell.

I am one of those people.

So I had a lot to consider in choosing my five most magical spots in my adopted hometown…

The most supposedly haunted? I’d need to include Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop, a legitimate business behind which my favorite pirate hid some of his illegitimate activities. Or the Hotel Monteleone (where the undead Jean Lafitte lives in my Sentinels of New Orleans series). Or just about any building in the French Quarter.

I could also go for the most infamous spots—scenes of horrific violence and mayhem. Or perhaps romantically magical spots like the streetcars rumbling down St. Charles Avenue or the trill of jazz along the riverfront. Maybe I could go with the scariest spots—surely led by the rusting ruins and clowns of Six Flags still abandoned a decade after Hurricane Katrina.

— And those are all things that didn’t make her list of five, which she discusses following that introduction.

(3) WHEN IN ROME. Matt Mitrovich covers a time travel novel at Amazing Stories “Book Review: The Emperor’s Men: Arrival by Dirk van den Boom”.

Arrival was an enjoyable read… but it has issues. On one hand, I though Dirk did a good job on the historical details with both the 1914-era Germans and the 4th century Romans. I liked how he spent time discussing how people dressed, how they prepared their food and even how they went to the bathroom (which is something most books leave out, but hey, there is history behind the toilet even if you don’t want to think about it). Additionally, while Arrival falls squarely into the time travelling ship trope, I still thought Dirk did a good job by using the trope in a setting that not many alternate historians go to (in fact Uchronia lists Dirk’s series as the only alternate history that diverges in 378).

(4) THE TIES THAT BIND. Madeleine E.  Robins tells Book View Café readers how she is going to take her mind off the election in  Respect the Process.

I am, in my day job, employed by the American Bookbinders Museum, a small museum focused on the shift from hand- to mechanical bookbinding as part of the greater Industrial Revolution. It’s fascinating, if you like books, or history, or art, or craft, or the history of women or unions or… As we’re a newish museum, we’re always looking to find ways to reach people who would be a natural audience for us. And as part of our outreach, I’m going to be spending weekends at Dickens Fair, an annual recreation of Dickens’s London on Christmas Eve. I’ll be sewing book signatures (the part of bookbinding that wasn’t mechanized until the mid-1870s) and attempting to interest passers-by in the subject, the craft, and, well… the museum.


  • Born November 8, 1836 — Games producer Milton Bradley
  • Born November 8, 1847 – Bram Stoker, of Dracula fame.

(6) TREKKING BY THE BOOK. Scott Dutton is at work on Star Fleet Technical Manual 2.0 and has posted online all the pages he’s completed to date.

In 1975, Franz Joseph’s Technical Manual was the perfect companion to his Enterprise blueprints. While there are more accurate sources now, these were two of the best items to have during the time after The Original Series went off the air and before the movies began.

I’ve been working on an updated edition off and on for the past year-and-a-half or so. I’ll continue to work on it as time permits, and I wanted to share the work in progress as a way to get the word out there about it. It’d be nice to see this as an official licenced product in ebook or printed form, or both.


(7) THE WEED OF CRIME. “Warning for all travelers to Worldcon 75,” says Hampus Eckerman – “373 police reports in Finland were connected to Moomin Mugs (Translation.) Seems like they are the entrance to heavy drugs. Be careful!”


(8) LONG LIST UPDATE. David Steffen still plans on a mid-December release for Long List Anthology Volume 2, provided he gets all the following done:

I’ve finished drafting up a manuscript for the entire anthology, with all of the stories formatted, with a foreword and acknowledgments, copyright page, previous publications page, table of contents etc.  This is one of the more time-consuming components of putting together the book, since the individual story manuscripts may be in widely varying formats (none of which actually match what is needed for any version of the book).  So there’s a lot of fiddly little details trying to pound out the dents in the formatting, make sure the table of contents is in the same order as the stories in the book, make sure the biographies are attached to the correct stories, and so on.  This manuscript has been handed off to Polgarus Studio for producing the final version of the interior layouts for both print and ebook formats.

I’m working with Pat Steiner to work on final details of the cover layout.  A bit of a chicken-and-egg there, because I need to give an ebook cover to Polgarus for them to make the ebook, but I need the print layout from them for Pat to produce the full print cover (because the print cover image includes the binding, and the binding depends on how many pages the book is).  So there is some back and forth there to get those important details sorted out, but I love the work Pat does, he makes the covers very sharp and readable.

Skyboat Media is hard at work producing the audiobook now.

Next I’ll be working on inputting all the information into Amazon, Kobo, and other book/ebook sources for the book so that hopefully when I get the formatted files back the listings will be ready to just plug in the manuscript files.

(9) EIGHT MILES HIGH. At Galactic Journey, The Traveler reviews a prozine while jetting to the Orient — “[November 8, 1961] Points East (Air Travel and the December 1961 Galaxy)”.

I have to tell you, things are so much faster these days.  The jet engine has cut flight times in half, taking much of the tedium out of travel.  Oh, sure, I always had plenty to do in the air, between writing and reading and planning my next adventures, but for my poor fellow travelers, there was little to do but drink, smoke, and write letters.  For hours and hours.

These days, the Journey is my primary occupation.  I can do it from anywhere, and I often do, bringing my family along with me.  As we speak, I am writing out this article with the roar of the Japan Airlines DC-8’s jets massaging my ears, music from pneumatic headphone cords joining the mix.  It’s a smooth ride, too.  It would be idyllic, if not for the purple clouds of tobacco smoke filling the cabin.  But again, I suffer this annoyance for half the time as before.  I’ll abide.

… Speaking of reports, I’ve just finished up this month’s Galaxy Science Fiction.  I almost didn’t recognize this December issue as it lacks the usual fanciful depiction of St. Nick.  Instead, it features an illustration from Poul Anderson’s new novel, The Day After Doomsday, whose first part takes up a third of the double-sized magazine.  As usual, I won’t cover the serial until it’s done, but Anderson has been reliable of late, and I’ve high hopes.

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian, JJ, and Hampus Eckerman for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day lurkertype.]

123 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 11/8/16 When We Scrolled The Pixels On Board, We Thought They Were Cute

  1. (5)
    “Born November 8, 1847 – Bram Stoker, or Dracula fame.”

    or Dracula fame? You mean he was famous for something else, or should I appertain?

  2. Soon Lee: …or Dracula fame? You mean he was famous for something else, or should I appertain?

    Yes, it’s time to appertain!

  3. Kind hugs. Yes. I passed mine along to the BF since he was crying. Peter Mansbridge and His Pundits™ on the CBC are totally freaked out.

    I’m not a hugger, but I have a ton of plushies to distribute for snuggles if necessary.

  4. The best I can say is that I remember how in 1980 a lot of us thought Reagan would blow up the world. Bad things did happen, but not the worst things. We will get through this.

    I know that’s cold comfort, but it’s the only kind on offer tonight. (And thanks for the hugs/plushies.) 😉

  5. Let’s see. Republican president, house, senate, plus probably 2 to 3 more SCJ. Say goodbye to gay rights, civil rights, healthcare, medicare. Say hello to privatized social security, ie no social security at all. Checks and balances completely removed. Welcome to the third world. The country may survive, but it will be a third world hell hole, and I’m likely too old to see the other side.

  6. I’m so tired of this kind of night.
    Been here before.
    Hate it.
    It keeps getting worse.
    We’re going to get “change.”

  7. Italy survived Berlusconi. It took some while, but he ended in jail. That is the only comfort I can give right now.

  8. Some of us are more likely to survive than others. And sorry, but no, Reagan wasn’t Trump. Trump is significantly stupider and possesses far less empathy or interest in anything at all beyond himself.

    As for George W. Bush, he tried to pass immigration reform, and actively worked to keep his Global War on Terror, as bad as that was, from becoming a war on American Muslims. Trump wants to deny the American identity of anyone he thinks is Different. It’s tough to tell whether Latinos are first on that list, or Muslims.

    This really is different.

  9. We had Obama who lied about his major program (you can keep your doctor and keep your current insurance). We had 100% Dem rule and now $17 trillion in additional debt.

    Grow up.

    Liberals have lied that every Republican President in my lifetime was evil, racist, would destroy the Constitution, etc…… Liberals cried wolf one too many times and we will probably have a megalomaniac instead of a sociopath as President.

    You idiots think that Civil Rights and Gay Rights will go away. You are delusional. Are you unable to read the US Constitution for Civil Rights? Gay rights are not that big of an issue in the USA. Do you think that Congress will pass legislation signed by the President on that? Try to get a grip.

    Obama and the Dems overreached and lost enough seats in the States that the Republicans had the most strength since the 1920s. Then Obama refused to enforce the law on immigration and many other things. If the Republicans overreach as much as Obama and the Dems did, then the elections will flip back in the other direction.

    But I’m not responsible for this debacle. I voted in the Republican Primary (unlike most). I voted for someone who was rational who wanted a much smaller government and the rule of law.

    I could not stomach a corrupt individual who cannot even tell what the truth is or a narcissist megalomaniac – so I voted for Garry Johnson. If we had more people vote in the primaries the US electorate would not have been faced with such horrible candidates.

    Trump will be opposed on many things by Congress. He is not loved by most Republican elected officials. There will be checks and balances.

    Try to get a grip. The world will not end. If the Federal Government performs too badly the Dems will win the House in 2018 and take over a lot of government in the States. That is what happened to Obama and the Dems and to Clinton after his first two years.

  10. Airboy: I hope people make it to the end of your comment before replying.

    And to one and all: I’m not reputed to be much of a mallet-swinger, however, everyone should avoid abusive language if they want me to stay that way.

  11. airboy:

    “We had Obama who lied about his major program (you can keep your doctor and keep your current insurance).”

    But mostly he got 20 million more insured. People who will now lose their health insurance.

    “Gay rights are not that big of an issue in the USA.”

    This is getting ridiculous. Anyone who has worked for LGBTQ-equality knows your statement is pure idiocy.

    And yes, I did remove part of my comment because I’m tired of all the trolls who can’t write anything without insults.

  12. Airboy, I’ve sometimes been of the opinion that your posts here have met with a stronger reaction than they strictly deserve.
    This is not going to be one of those occasions.

  13. So. Cubs have won, Biff Tannen has won. Where is my hoverboard and when is the next Jaws released?

  14. Anyone have any coping resources to share for someone who doesn’t want to fall back into bad habits she left behind 10 years ago?

  15. In a futile attempt at distraction, I’ll point out that Chaos Horizon has kicked off their coverage of 2016’s potential award contenders with a look at the first couple of “best of year” lists. (Ahem, for values of “year” that ignore November and December)


    I’m looking forward to getting hold of this, if only because it’s good to have the stories in one place rather than scattered over many agazines etc.


    To be fair, those are very suspicious looking Moomins.

  16. Jim Wright made a helpful post on Facebook:

    Folks, I have people here and on Twitter telling me they’re thinking about killing themselves over the election results. If you tell me that, even if you’re not serious, then I am duty bound by conscience and as your host to do something about it. And I will not hesitate to make the call…

    If you’re serious, then you call somebody right now. Trump is not worth it and I am not qualified to talk you down. You call somebody right now. You call this number 1-800-273-8255 (SAVE.org). Do it as a favor to me if not for yourself.

    Also, there is a Crisis Txt Line service: Txt START to 741741 from anywhere in the USA, anytime, about any type of crisis. A live, trained Crisis Counselor will respond to the txt.

  17. Currently reading (a) a story about an AI finding its way in the world alongside a woman who used to be a slave (b) a story about a god that’s lost their way and their mad children who try to fix things and (c) a tale of a rebellion that has surprisingly succeeded.

    If books are the foundation of the future, then things aren’t so bad.

  18. Dr. Chuck Tingle now has serious competition for Best Related Work.

    @airboy: I hope things go as well as you say. My historical reference point as a Southerner is the end of Reconstruction, so I am not hopeful in the short term. We’ve seen gains in freedom and justice rolled back right over the people who’d gained them. Law didn’t matter, just raw power.

  19. I am also willing to dispense gentle internet hugs (and plushies) to anyone saddened by the result. I hope it doesn’t end up being as bad as people are fearing it might be.

  20. @airboy: I notice you offer two examples of Republicans taking Congress from Democrats, and none vice-versa. (Yes, the Senate tipped briefly under Dubya because a Republican walked; do you see any 2-3 people that honorable now?) Tipping the House will be even more difficult now because the Republicans have so massively gerrymandered Congressional districts; compare the Republican margin with the fact that there were >1e6 more votes cast for Democratic representatives in 2014 than for Republican. And aside from Trump being observably incapable of taking sound advice (unlike Dubya and Reagan), how many more deficit explosions (due to unfunded tax cuts) do you think the US can take? Or do you believe that Republicans will fight Trump on tax cuts? (I don’t think they’ll fight him on anything; they were trying to save their seats when it looked like he was going down, but now they’ll get in line as they have in the past.)

  21. Only one option left.

    *Buys Romancing the Inventor*

    Keep buying Gail Carriger books till the pain dulls.

    Wallet draining is probably the lest self-destructive way to deal.

  22. @ airboy: Well, you’re being more than usually dense today. Allow me to point out that we now have a President-elect who ran on a platform of ethnic cleansing — and a majority in both houses of Congress who will be delighted to back him to the hilt. And we have that, in part, because of people like you who bought the Republican lies hook, line, and sinker and decided that they didn’t want to get their precious hands dirty.

    And here’s Mr. Straight White Dude Purity Voter, whose life will not be affected in any way, telling us all to “grow up”? Yeah, right.

    @ JJ: I’m not tempted to kill myself. I know they want me dead, but I’m by ghod going to make them WORK for it. You don’t give terrorists what they want.

  23. I published my thoughts for today a few weeks back. Nothing much has changed.

    The short version, perhaps the Democrats should have gone with a candidate that appealed to a broader spectrum of voters. I’d have been very glad to consider someone like Jim Webb this year. Very….very….glad.

    On another front, there is a book out about one of my favorite authors; Robert Silverberg. It sounds quite interesting.


  24. So that happened. A sentiment I’ve heard that resonates is that of suddenly discovering that you’ve been living in Earth-2, when you thought you were in Earth-1.

    Something else that I saw, from Diane Duane’s tumblr:

    | what do we do tho? like, honestly? what happens if he’s elected? what do we honest to god do?

    >Coming from the UK after our own catastrophe: you make his life hell. You make his government’s life hell. Anything and everything shitty that they want to do, you protest, you campaign, you petition, you lobby. You tie the whole thing up in so much red tape that Mr I’ve-Never-Had-Anyone-Say-No-To-Me starts loathing his job.

    You create private safe zones, you look out for one another, you let your now validated racist, homophobic, transphobic neighbours know that their bigotry will not be tolerated through any means you feel it’s safe to do so. You join forces. Despite everything, you thrive out of spite, out of survival, out of a need to protect your own.

    All of these communities have faced untold amounts of hell before and we’re all still here. It’s in our history to survive – in our genetic makeup. There will be losses and there will be casualties but in four years you’ll still be here and you’ll vote him out and the time to grieve will be then. For now, fight. In any way you can, even if all you can do is get through each day at a time. Fight him every step of the way.

    Good night.

  25. @Dann– Of course you prefer the guy who, after he got nearly zero Democratic support pre-primaries for the 2016 race, dropped out, explored an independent run, announced he wouldn’t vote for Clinton, and “wouldn’t rule out” voting for Trump.

    He preferred the fascist to a woman with a career of hard work, public service, and helping others–no doubt because like any male nominee for President, she’s ambitious, has compromised, and has sometimes done questionable things but nothing she could be prosecuted for.

    I totally get why you would have preferred Webb. The question is, why should Democratic voters have preferred him to Clinton, or Sanders, or Kaine, or Warren, or Martin O’Malley?

    And, of course, Clinton won the popular vote, so the question is, how much more popular does the Democratic nominee have to be to not be an obvious mistake a Democrats deserve what we got, in your mind?

  26. @Iphinome:

    I also don’t know what your old coping mechanisms are. Here’s a link to some distress tolerance skills taught in DBT. Looks like you’re rocking self soothe at the moment. Take good care of you.

  27. airboy: if you take Trump’s comments at face value, he becomes something to worry about.

    Thee country went through eight years with Bush jr. Time to grit our teeth and go through it again. Maybe the pendulum will cross back sooner than later.

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