September 15th, 2009


[links] Link salad wakes up, gets out of bed, drags a comb...

A reader reacts (well) to Green Powell's | Amazon | Kindle | Barnes & Noble | Borders ]

ISBW #131 - Worldcon Interviews Lake, (Felix) Gilman, and Kelly, Kessel, and Cadigan — Mur Lafferty's podcast, interviewing a few of us writers who were at WorldCon.

Ukrainian Sand Animation — Wow. Fascinating video. (Thanks to MH, whose LJ handle I suddenly can't remember.)

Famous photos recreated in Lego — Cool.

tacit with The wonder of the physical universe: Naica, Mexico — Wow. A must-read blog post (with photos!) about giant crystals. (Thanks to danjite.)

Astronomers Plan Galaxy-Sized Observatory For Gravitational Waves — Now that is some bad-ass instrumentation.

Lightcraft: A Laser Push to OrbitCentauri Dreams with a write up on an interesting launch technology. Like Project Orion, without the radiation poisoning.

Venus probe images hint at ancient ocean — Ah, to be young again. Or something. (Nicked from james_nicoll.)

Youre Likely to Live!Freakonomics on ageing and the Gompertz Law of human mortality. Who knew? (Besides actuaries, of course.)

A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words — Anti-Obama derangement, fairly literally.

Race is a Factor — Ta-Nehisi Coates with more on anti-Obama vitriol, comparing it to anti-Clinton vitriol. Hey, remember when the Right was tut-tutting about liberals and their inexplicable Bush derangement syndrome? Yeah, well, they sure don't remember it.

?otD: Why is a duck?

Body movement: 15 minutes of stretching and meditation, 60 minute suburban walk
Hours slept: 5.75
This morning's weigh-in: 229.4
Currently reading: The Real Wizard of Oz by Rebecca Loncraine

Originally published at


[personal] A glimpse inside my mind

In case you were wondering how my mind works, here's a partial list of the things that I thought about on my pre-dawn walk this morning, in semirandom order as I can recall them an hour later:

  • calendula_witch

  • Why the local police have switched from Crown Vics to Dodge Chargers

  • The value of a passive predation strategy that relies on stupid prey (ie, spiders in their webs)

  • World building and character elements in Sunspin

  • Whatever happened to wooden wheels on cars?

  • calendula_witch some more

  • The question of artifactual intelligence vs nonartifactual intelligence, and whether the human race as a whole is missing the point

  • That I need to go to the grocery store today or tomorrow

  • Where the hell the moon was, since I'd seen it in the sky yesterday morning

  • the_child's new school year

  • What was the animal in the bushes that sounded like a wounded howler monkey

  • Oregon weather

  • The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction

Originally published at


[contests] Flash Fiction Open voting round is here

Hat by criada

Photographed at the Whatcom Creek Estuary, in Washington State, by criada.

© 2009. All rights reserved. Reproduced with permission.

Per a suggestion from tillyjane, and with agreement from criada whose photo this is, I held a flash fiction open round. Using criada's photo as their inspiration, twenty people wrote a piece of flash (500 words or less).

All of the stories can be read here: [ | LiveJournal ]

I had four celebrity judges read all twenty stories, and give me preliminary rankings. My thanks go out to bravado111, calendula_witch, klingonguy and maryrobinette. Also, thanks and congratulations to everyone who played along. This was so much fun that I'll do another one of these before too long, I'm sure.

Now it's time to vote, in the poll here. The five finalist stories are all linked from the poll post, so it's easy to click through and peruse them. Check it out, and support your favorite.

Originally published at