Does it count as writing if you've had
the file open for the last hour and a
half, but spent most of your time
thinking about writing, surfing
the net, and playing solitaire? Sure,
it doesn't add to your word count, but
No, eh. That's what I thought.
who is way more
knowledgeable about this
stuff than I'll ever be,
recommended I set my
projected word count for
100k instead of 120K,
thereby increasing my
productivity by .6% without
writing a single extra word.
I told you she was good.
I'm going to Ad Astra today. Neener
While there I will no
doubt hang with other worldly,
sophisticated and intelligent
So there. Thptttt.
Okay, since you all suck at con
reports, I guess I'm going to give you
Ad Astra was fun, and as
E's friend Laura put it: "The people
at this convention were nicer looking
than at most cons I go to. The
attendee pool was even more prone to
bathing and acting like adults than I
am used to seeing at cons."
It's cause we're
As usual, E (an honorary
Canadian) was the first person I met
when I got there on Friday, and she'd
brought along a couple of friends--the
aforementioned Laura, and Hans. Both
were bright, funny, and amiable, but
then what else would you expect from
friends of E.
We spent most of Friday
night at the bar, of course, and I
spent a lot of
money time in
the dealer's room talking with the
lovely Bakka-Phonix people: Chris,
Leah, and Simmone (Aurora?), after
which I dragged everyone to a
chocolate tasting. (Yeah, right, major
arm-twisting there.) Once we'd sampled
a gazillion bits of chocolate (Aztec?
I don't know what's in it, but it
burned my tongue!) I sniffed out some
more chocolate three floors up. Well,
okay, it was a Harry Potter Party, but
they had a chocolate fountain, so that
counts. Of course we all had to be
sorted under the sorting hat first.
Chris, being a boss and all, was
Slytherin. As a matter of fact, most
of the women were, which just goes to
prove--they're evil. I could
have sworn I was sorted into
Chippendales, but everyone else
assures me it was Hufflepuff. Oddly
enough, Aurora got Hufflepuff, too, so
apparently we can kick your ass--you
just have to ask us real nice like.
By Saturday the rest of
the folks showed up. Karin arrived, as
did Derek Molata--who I'd never met
before, but now I have, and I'm glad
of it. He's funny, and big--so he
clears a crowd nicely and I don't have
to shove anyone when I walk behind
Lesley (Livingston) and
Caitlyn (Sweet) showed up to do their
thing for the Sunburst Auction, and
this time brought a third femme fatale
with them--Adrienne Kress. The auction
drew a big crowd (Oh, okay, the girls
drew the crowd!) with Leslie doing her
schtick, Caitlyn setting her up, and
Adrienne playing Vanna White. I'm sure
Peter Halazs was beside himself.
(Well, actually, he was beside the
three girls, a lot, and I have the
pictures to prove it. *g*) I made
myself useful by letting them use my
room to change in. (I made the mistake
of going back there later to get my
Convention Badge, and it looked like
the Pussycat Dolls had exploded in
Later, I went to Karin's
reading, and one (two?) of her panels,
and one of Caitlyn's, and somewhere in
there I ate lunch--I think. Then Scott
(Bakker) showed up, which was nice
because no one was expecting him. (He
only let a couple of people feel the
dent in his head this time--but he did
tell fart jokes the next morning at
breakfast, so it wasn't all bad. *g*)
Sometime in there Guy
Gavriel Kay showed up, and Rob Sawyer
(who sat on Guy's knee, along with
Scott and Peter?--and there are
pictures to prove that, too) Caroline
Klink, and Elizabeth (from down south)
and Laura, and Jeffrey AB, and Martin
Springett, and Terry, and, and…
Okay, sometime in there I
got hungry and a bunch of us went to a
Japanese place for some teppanyaki,
which was good, then it was back to
the bar, where we talked until two in
The next day I got up and
had breakfast (See above for reference
to Scott's fart jokes) and then,
scored as Blade. Thats
right you are the booty kicking
you cross me and I will stomp a
mudhole in your butt type. Sexy
and a great fighter with mad
Vampire personality? (images)
And in keeping with the
vampire theme, I went for
blood tests this morning.
They took 9 (count em, 9!)*
vials. (Okay, I originally
wrote that as "viles",
which, if my blood was vile,
would explain a lot.) And I
have to go back this
afternoon to give more.
I mean, I can't let those
vampires have all my
blood, can I? If I did,
there'd be none left for
the zombies me.
*you'll have to count em;
I'm too weak.*
Zack Snyder's hit 300, about the
Greco-Persian Battle of Thermopylae in
480 B.C., has drawn the wrath of
Iranians for showing their ancestors
as bloodthirsty "savages," the Agence
France-Presse news service reported.
(Yeah, as opposed to
all those Nancy-boy, tea-toting
Iranian press, officials
and bloggers have united in denouncing
the film as another example of
"psychological warfare" against Tehran
by its American archenemy at a time of
mounting tension over its nuclear
program, the AFP reported.
You morons! 99.9% of
Americans had no idea the Iran used to
be Persia. Hell, they can't even find
their own town on a map. So
thanks for pointing that out.
On a totally unrelated
note, (nice segue, huh?) I'm the Base
Duty MCpl today. No, it's not as
exciting as it seems. Basically I get
to make sure no one gets into the mess
hall unkempt (You have to be very
kempt to eat in CF mess halls) or lock
themselves out of their rooms or
Hey, when I said I wanted
to serve my country, I didn't mean
So I arrived home from Base Duty
yesterday morning at around 07:35,
apparently surprising Pen who was
asleep and hadn't expected me home
until much later. I guess she thought
someone was breaking in.
I gave her a stiletto,
which she keeps under the bed, and I
have this big bowie knife and a short
sword hidden there as well. So what
does she come out into the hallway
One of those bean bag
heating pad thingies. Didn't I teach
that woman anything?
So the new budget is out. They spread
out 10 billion dollars, and as far as
I can tell, none of it will help me
out one bit. As a matter of fact, I
think I'm going to pay about $300
dollars more a year in taxes.
I think the average
Canadian would be thrilled if the
finance minister got up and said,
"Listen, we're going to spend most of
the money on lowering income tax and
providing for education, health care,
and affordable homes. After that we'll
just divvy up the rest amongst
You know, prioritize.
See, that's the kind of
budget we'd get if they actually cared
about what the people need,
instead of what the people who
might vote for them need, or the
ones who support their campaign. (A
huge chunk of that budget is headed
for Quebec, because try winning an
election without them. And no doubt
the rich and Big Business will do just
I am the proud owner of
Kung Fu: the Complete First Season. You
know, the one with David Carradine. No, not the
junk that came after, but the original with the
whole, "Pass me the hibachi, Grasshopper."
Of course, I haven't had
a chance to watch it yet, but I will, soon.
Kung Fu came out in 1972,
I think. It was probably one of the main
influences that got me interested in martial
arts. I'd been taking Judo for about a year by
then, but once I saw it I just had to learn to
beat up people in an all-new way.
Hey, I never said it was
a positive influence.
Mimzy comes out this weekend. Now, I
have no idea if the movie is any good
or not, but it was one of my favourite
short stories when I was younger. I
seem to remember the story having a
somewhat darker tone than the movie
trailers would have us believe, but I
could be wrong.
Oh, and that Lewis
Padgett guy they say the story was
written by? Well, that's the pen name
for the husband and wife writing team
of Henry Kuttner and C.L. Moore. Oddly
enough, Kuttner was my favourite short
story author, too (Well, at least for
sci-fi.) and wrote the kind of story I
tried to emulate. (Which is when I
discovered that no one was interested
in that kind of story anymore--or I
was doing a lousy job of emulating
That's just the subdural
Your Brain is Purple
Of all the brain types,
yours is the most
You tend to think wild,
amazing thoughts. Your
dreams and fantasies are
Your thoughts are
creative, inventive, and
You tend to spend a lot
of time thinking of
fictional people and
places - or a very
different life for
I had to wake Pen
up for work this
morning, which is
a task akin to
waking a puppy up
to kick it. I
mean, she looks so
and to have to
wake her up just
so she can go to
Anyway, I woke her up,
and was downstairs
putting on my
combat boots, when
trundling down and
instead of heading
for the shower
wanders over and
sits on my lap,
snuggling into my
Don't get me wrong, it's
nice and all, but
I know it's just a
ploy to swindle
more sleep. So our
no more drooling
on my shoulder.
Time to get your
butt in the
drooling. I was
giving you extra
hugs. I know guys
who would kill for
but I doubt they'd
kill to have you
drool on them....
okay, wait a
minute.... I take
If ever I was a believer
Still, I had the same
as if I
Yet, when I finally made
Maybe I read too much
I was a
Sgt: Look straight to
Pte: "Yes, sir!"
Sgt: "Don't call me sir!
Sgt: "That's right. These
Pte: "No Sgt."
Sgt: "I can't hear you."
Everyone: "NO SARGEANT!"
Apparently I miss my
Writers are sucking the life out of my reading experience.
Okay, let me explain. I saw a brief interview with George R.R. Martin on the Space Channel the other day, where he said (basically) that he hates it when people criticize a bit of writing by saying that it "doesn't advance the plot." To which his reply is, who cares? I'm afraid I have to agree.
Since when did telling a story become about getting from point A to point B in the most quick and efficient manner? What's wrong with taking a little side trip now and then to explore those little boutique shops down that back alley? Sometimes that's where all the cool stuff is hiding.
Who told us that's the way it has to be, and why are we listening to them?
The more I talk to writers/editors, the more I realise that they get all tangled up in things that readers don't notice, don't care about, or disagree with in the first place.
In critiques, writers often point out what they perceive as shortcomings--things like this didn't advance the plot--that the average reader never notices, or worse yet, loves.
More and more I think there's a disconnect between what writers write and what readers read, much like there's a disconnect about what movie critics like and what the movie going public wants to see.
What do you think?
Today is my wife's birthday. I think she's about eight years old--at least mentally. She's really a big kid at heart. Luckily she's a tad older than that physically, cause, you know, child molesting is not my thing.
Happy Birthday Pen!!!
Okay, so the general consensus seems to be that "doesn't advance the plot" is code of "this part was boring." The only problem with that is that definition is rather subjective. What's boring to one person is riveting to another, and vice versa. And, as E noted, in longer works (i.e. multiple novels) you never know what's going to be relevant until it's over. In George R.R. Martin's interview, he stated the series was going to run about 7 books. So far he's written four, so who's to say what's relevant and what's going off on a tangent?
So I read Elizabeth Bear's Carnival, and I have to say, I liked it. But…
I don't know if I can accurately explain my thoughts on this. It had great world building, neat aliens, cool tech, a fascinating society, intriguing history, lots of well-done spy and covert stuff, a mystery you couldn't unravel in the first 20 pages, and an ending you were never sure of until you actually reached…well…the ending. I liked the characters--yes, even the homosexual protagonists (says defiantly hetero me).* There was lots of action and loads of well done fight scenes. In fact, it was pretty much right up my alley.
So why did it take me a month and a half to read it?
I don't know. There are those books you can't put down, every chapter coning you into reading the next so that you just have to keep turning those pages until you reach the end and you finish it in a day. Carnival should have been one of those books, but for some reason it wasn't. And I can't for the life of me tell you why.
And still? I liked it. Go figure.
*Homosexual: "Try it, you'll like it."