Saturday, December 25, 2004
This is the front of my house on Christmas morning. Nobody in Alvin, Texas, can remember the last white Christmas here. Maybe there's never been one. I've lived in Texas all my life, and this is the first white Christmas I can remember. I suppose we only care about things like that because of Irving Berlin and Bing Crosby, but it's still kind of neat.
Friday, December 24, 2004
Via World o' Crap comes this link to the Star Wars Christmas Special, the one that George Lucas would like to pretend doesn't exist. Being an Old Guy, I saw it when it appeared on TV, never to be repeated. But someone's made a bootleg DVD, and you can see five minutes or so of it here. (Scroll down to the picture to click on.) It seems more like five hours, so you'll get your money's worth.
Thursday, December 23, 2004
Wednesday, December 22, 2004
I got this link in an e-mail from Cap'n Bob Napier, who got it in turn through others: "(Craig Miller mentioned this on the Timebinders mailing list and indicated that Jeff Copeland pointed it out to him.) --D Gary Grady." Naturally I had to put it in the blog. It's possibly the best article I've read on fandom, and it mentions some names that should be familiar to everybody (Ed Gorman, especially). Wonderful, nostalgic stuff. My eyes got misty reading it. And if there are a few things Ebert gets wrong or misremembers, so what? It's still a great piece.
Update: Art Scott informs me that this piece was originally published as the "Introduction" to Dick Lupoff's The Best of Xero (Tachyon Press), which I should already own. I don't, so I'd better see what I can do about that.
I like lists, if only because it's fun to nitpick them. So I found this an interesting site, and I also enjoyed the related site on fantasy.
BELFAST, Northern Ireland (AP) - In one of the world's biggest robberies, thieves took the families of two top bankers hostage and forced the bosses to help them steal more than $39 million from the vaults of a Belfast bank's main office, authorities said Tuesday.It was either the IRA or a guy named Parker. Probably not Dortmunder, though.
An unexplained phenomenon akin to a space-borne car wash has boosted the performance of one of the two US rovers probing the surface of Mars, New Scientist magazine said.
It said something - or someone - had regularly cleaned layers of dust from the solar panels of the Mars Opportunity vehicle while it was closed down during the Martian night.
The cleaning had boosted the panels' power output close to their maximum 900 watt-hours per day after at one stage dropping to 500 watt-hours because of the heavy Martian dirt.
By contrast, the power output of the solar panels of Mars Spirit - on a different part of the Red Planet - had dropped to just 400 watt-hours a day, clogged by the heavy dust.
"These exciting and unexplained cleaning events have kept Opportunity in really great shape," the magazine quoted NASA rover team leader Jim Erickson as saying.
OK, this is weird. Sounds like a great premise for an SF story.
Tuesday, December 21, 2004
So my comment is, "Male cozy"? Have I invented a new subgenre? Will my name go down in mystery history alongside those of Hammett and Chandler and, well, let's not be riduculous.
Jon also mentions Boss Napier, who plays a very minor part in the story and should not be confused with any persons living or dead because any resemblance is purely coincidental.
Monday, December 20, 2004
So ever since, I've been waiting for someone to interview me. And waiting. And waiting. Now I'm beginning to think nobody wants to interview me. So I guess I'll have to do it myself. Herewith, the Interview:
The Blog: When did you decide you wanted to become a writer?
Me: I've always wanted to write. In fact, I wrote my first novel at the age of five, a hardboiled tale of violence and revenge called The Velveteen Rabbit Takes Names and Kicks Ass. It would have been a blockbuster, but all the major publishers rejected it. "We don't do fanfic" was the typical turn-down.
The Blog: But you didn't give up.
Me: Oh, no. I went on to write Nancy Drew to an Inside Straight, a boldly sexual tale of Nancy and Ned and a red-hot strip poker game in which Nancy's best friend, the ambigously named "George," is also involved. Naturally the cowardly big-time publishing establishment turned that one down, too. "Fanfic is not acceptable," they said, "much less erotic fanfic."
The Blog: That must have been discouraging.
Me: You bet it was. I almost didn't write Aunt Gertrude Does Detroit. Frank and Joe Hardy are shocked to discover that their aunt is moonlighting as a pole dancer in a seedy dive, where she does a little diving of her own, if you know what I mean and I think you do.
The Blog: Yes. I do. Maybe. And let me guess: fanfic.
Me: Too true. But . . . .
The Blog: I'm sorry, but we've run out of time. Thanks for being our interview subject.
Me (tugging my forelock and digging my toe into the rug): No. . . thank you. Thank you very much.
Sunday, December 19, 2004
Dave Zeltserman, author of the excellent Fast Lane, has started a blog. Fast Lane was published by a small press, and now Dave is on the verge of getting his new book, Outsourced, bought by a major house. Or so he hopes. He's going to chronicle his experiences in the blog, and it should be interesting reading.