March 13th, 2008


[links] Link salad comes home

A review of The River Knows Its Own Wheatland Press | Amazon ]

Frozen remains of WWII airman identified

An Unlikely Map of 'A Better Sky' — A misguided effort to rename the constellations. Amusingly weird.

Regret the Error — A blog of (sometimes) amusing or curious newspaper retractions.

Self-Experimenters Step Up for Science — Do-it-yourself science with a sample size of one.

Happiness Is In The Genes, Say Scottish Scientists — Hmmm.

Chicago Tunnel Company Railroad — Weird, cool lost tech. More here, from 1929. (Thanks to willyumtx.)

A World Without Trucks — Pipelines for physical goods. Related to the old pneumatic postal systems. (Thanks to willyumtx.)

The Big Book Of Lesbian Horse Stories — (Thanks to danjite.)

Special rights for religious idiots — Yeah, baby. This is why we need religious values in politics! To make our children stupider!

"Militant Unitarians" — An interesting comment about the ongoing Christianist fantasies concerning the alleged religious beliefs of the nation's Founders.

HUD E-Mails Refer to Retaliation — If you still labor under the delusion that the GOP stands for ethical government, probably you don't want to read this link.

Time in saddle: 0 minutes (caught up on sleep instead)
Last night's weigh-out: n/a
This morning's weigh-in: 279.1
Currently reading: Field of Fire, by James O. Born Powell's | Amazon ]


[process] Contributing to today's teapot tempest

Spotted via scalzi's Whatever, Robin Hobb on the perils of blogging.

pnh talks crazy in response, to wit: " seems to me possible that for some writers, blogging is a time sink and a creative drain, while for others it's a source of connection, energy, and inspiration."

Man, these writers. People who blog too much have no one but themselves... erm...

I'll just get me coat, shall I?

Poll #1153573 Does Jay blog too much?

Does Jay blog too much?

Do Catholic Pintos explode in the woods?
No, no, man, you don't blog enough!
Clearly your blogging is getting in the way of your writing career.
Clearly your writing career is getting in the way of your blogging.
What is this blogging you speak of?
Pipe down, you hypergraphic git.

[process] Working on Green, thinking about dialog

I'm working on Green. It's going well, thank you. But I've started thinking about dialog all of the sudden.

It's a convention of literature (or at least the subspecies thereof which I write) that people speak in clear, declarative sentences. Often these sentences occur in long paragraphs. Also they sometimes support more convoluted affairs from which subordinate clauses depend and into which comma splices are mashed.

Yet if you look at transcriptions of real conversations — not formal speech such as classroom lecturing or political oration, but true dialog between ordinary people — nobody talks that way.

Well, ok, I sometimes do. And it's not a terribly uncommon Fannish/Proish affectation to speak in that manner. But you take my point.

I am hardly the first person to whom this has occurred, and at some level I've always known this, at least since college linguistics courses somewhere back in the long ago.

Once Green clears my desk, I am intent on writing some dialog-heavy short fiction which attempts to reflect the patterns of everyday conversation. It will be interesting to see whether I can succeed at that.