November 2nd, 2011


[links] Link salad won't go out tonight

"Remember, Harlan!" said the driftglassman — Harlan Ellison and a copyright problem.

Junot Diaz and Min Jin Lee Tell it Like it is #origins #doubt #why people want to become writers — (Via @literaryanimal.)

Why Fingernails on Blackboards Sound So Horrible — Heh.

Scientists: Modern humans mated with different species — Rishathra, anyone?

China Launches Shenzhou-8 To Test Docking For Chinese Space Station

Are Bendable Smart Phones the Future? — For you near-term futurists.

System D: The Shadow Economy is the Second Largest in the World — Huh. Real life version of what we see in cyberpunk and elsewhere.

The medieval, unaccountable Corporation of London is ripe for protestWorking beyond the authority of parliament, the Corporation of London undermines all attempts to curb the excesses of finance. A strange and fascinating squib on a British legal oddity that affects us all. Plus bonus China Mieville references. Plutocracy on the hoof. (Via multiple sources.)

Dr. Livingstone's lost 1871 'massacre' diary recovered; discovery rewrites history — Interesting stuff about digital imaging. (Via [info]danjite.)

Are big banks feeling pressure from Occupy Wall Street? — Hmmm.

Major Parties Struggle for Popularity; Broad Interest in an Alternative

Wartime Contracting Commission Classifies Findings for Next 20 YearsAlthough the Commission on Wartime Contracting was created to expose waste and abuse, their records are sealed until 2031. Come on, Obama, we elected you to be better than the GOP. And that is a low, low bar.

Remember when Romney said he wouldn’t put a Muslim in the cabinet? He made his Mormonism relevant. — Interesting point. Up til now I've maintained Romney's religion isn't relevant to his run for the presidency, being a fundamentally private matter. But why should he be exempted from the same religious test he would place on people he would name to his own cabinet? We all know the answer, of course, because Republicans can always have it both ways. I love the smell of hypocrisy in the morning.

Bruce Bartlett, Ex-Reagan Economist: Idea That Deregulation Leads To Jobs 'Just Made Up' — Well, that's what the facts say, but unlike those of us in the reality-base community, facts never got in the way of a good red meat to the base conservative talking point. (Via [info]madwriter.)

?otD: Is it bound to take your life?

Writing time yesterday: 0.25 hours (chemo fatigue, tiny bit of WRPA)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 11.0 hours (fitful overnight plus napping)
Weight: 214.4
Currently (re)reading: Interesting Times by Terry Pratchett


[writing|cancer] Nature abhors a vacuum, and so do I

Except when one is on chemotherapy, apparently.

It's odd, being me right now. Normally my mind is a churn of imagination, images and random thoughts streaking off like Roman candles. But the chemo really does flatten my right brain. Curiously, not the left — fatigue can put paid to that, but my analytical thinking skills are still pretty intact so long as I'm rested and fed and not too tired.

Which is of course the main reason I haven't had to take a leave of absence from the Day Jobbe. I'm a little slower than normal but can still do the business thinking needed to perform my job functions.

In effect, though, I'm now on a 2-3 month leave of absence from my writing.

It's not gone. My dreams are still present, and they are decidedly right-brained. But asleep, definitely asleep. Yesterday afternoon I had to read page proofs on two different short stories. It was like trying to decipher Swahili. Short fiction, written by me, with only very light edits imposed. And wow, I practically got a headache.

The result is I feel like there's a vacuum in my head. A creative vacuum. Prior to cancer and chemotherapy, I'd gone through an entire writing career without suffering writer's block for more than 2-3 days at a time. There's always something to write so long as I've had the time. But chemotherapy (and likewise surgery, albeit on a much shorter timescale) seems to be the ultimate block to me. First slowing me down, then grinding me to a halt as I sit in a creative vacuum, slowly reaching equilibrium with the silence around me.

And it makes me sad.