October 1st, 2008


[links] Link salad for a hump day

Extraordinary Engines is forthcoming — Including my steampunk short story, “The Lollygang Save the World on Accident”, which itself is an homage to K.W. Jeter’s Farewell Horizontal.

Just How Big Is the Damn Universe Anyway? — Professor (and fellow Tor author) Mike Brotherton explains how big the universe really is. We sneer at observability here on this blog.

tongodeon on Japan’s space elevator project — Yep. Nice to have priorities, isn’t it? So, how do you feel about the trillion dollar war in Iraq and the $1.3 trillion bailout?

Scientific American on media bias — Color me a bit surprised at some of this information. But then, I have my own observer biases. It’s also worth noting the specific measurements discussed are very narrow. (As opposed to, say, counting the number of Republican commentators covering the Democratic convention vs the number of Democratic commentators covering the Republican convention.) Also this article somewhat elides the definition of “media” in “media bias”, which lordofallfools and I have been going back and forth on for a while. Specifically, many conservative observers don’t seem to want to include talk radio in the “media” of “media bias” unless you also include Hollywood. Which strikes me as deeply cockeyed, as much of non-sports talk radio is explicitly political, while very little of Hollywood’s output is. (Thanks to lt260.)

The 1912 Republican convention — Some interesting political history. My favorite bit: Roosevelt had become the most dangerous man in American history, said Taft, “because of his hold upon the less intelligent voters and the discontented.” Which would pretty much be the core of modern Republican electoral politics: oversimplify the issues and sell to people’s fears. (Thanks to danjite.)

National Review Online on Monday’s failure of the bailout bill vote — “After the legislation was defeated and only one-third of House Republicans backed the plan, John Boehner and Roy Blunt took to the microphones and indicated that Pelosi’s speech had been so alienating and offensive that a significant number of House Republicans changed their mind and voted against the bill.

Can they be serious? Do they realize how foolish and irresponsible they sound? On one of the most important votes they will ever cast, insisting “the speech made me do it” is lame and adolescent. The vote, after all, was on the legislation, not the speech.”

Body movement: 30 minutes on stationary bike
Last night’s weigh-out: n/a
This morning’s weigh-in: 232.0
Currently reading: n/a

Originally published at jlake.com. You can comment here or there.


[personal] Off into the wild

Just wrapped my day’s work on Tourbillon. Two hours came hard, what with a full day of Day Jobbe, taking the_child to get her passport renewed, introducing her to Settlers of Catan, packing for FenCon and whatnot. Nothing on the Green CEM.

I’ll be up stupid early tomorrow to make the airport, then hit the air. That should more than nail down my Tourbillon time for the day. With luck I’ll get a few extra hours between plane time and pre-FenCon time on the ground to jam out some more CEM. I might yet get through this without having to dial down Tourbillon.

In the mean time, all my FenCon critique is ready and waiting, and I’m geared up for the weekend and everything it might mean.

Y’all play nice while I’m gone.

Originally published at jlake.com. You can comment here or there.


[writing] A few stray thoughts about Tourbillon

Hiit 68,200 words today, 18 days in. I am at the breakpoint between the first and second acts as of where I closed the file out tonight. That’s probably a good thing, as it’s consistent with my expectations of the length of the first draft. It also means that unless I put in some “power days” I won’t be done with this manuscript until sometime after WFC. Since my original goal was 12/1, this is no disaster, but it would be nice to have this wrapped before I go to Calgary.

Many of the bits and pieces are gelling in my head. This is as it should be. I now know more about the wingéd savages than I did before. Certain secondary characters are forcing their way forward, and one has crept in quite unexpectedly (without having first dropped around the outline for a smoke and a chat) and seems to hold the key to a lot of plot elements.

Ie, it’s a book, and it’s happening inside my head. I’d say “ouch”, but I rather like getting this sort of thing out.

Originally published at jlake.com. You can comment here or there.