I'm not sure the technical name for the format she's up to--about 80-120 pages, slightly wider than a standard mass market paperback, an illustration every chapter or so. The series we're just finishing, Beast Quest, says 7-10 years on the back, as does the one before that, Underworlds (Tony Abbott).
Natural disasters, secondary-world fantasy, and portal fantasies are the last three sub-genres she's read, I think, and mystery is okay too. And the female characters have to be the protagonists, not the sidekicks, especially not the sidekicks who keep needing to get rescued.
She has a Franny K. Stein book from her teacher, so if she likes that there's more of those. Oh, and she liked the first Creepella Von Cacklefur book, so I'll get more of those.
Ideally the prose would also be non-awful, but I made it through the Underworlds series, so I can make it through some similar non-grammatical and clunky stuff to get her girl action heroes.
(Note age/format limits, please; i.e., don't recommend Tamora Pierce. And if you're going to say "she's the sidekick but she's cool," please don't.)
I have things to say! About Readercon and Welcome to Night Vale and four versions of "Atlantic City" and the Hugo & Campbell nominees and the kids and traveling to England and Ireland next month, yikes . . . but I came home from Readercon to find that work had exploded in several different directions. So I will clear one thing off my queue with a short request for assistance, and hope to catch up with other things later.
In a couple months, I am going to re-read Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell for Tor.com for the lead-up to the BBC series (release date as yet unannounced, but probably near the end of 2014). (I will also re-read The Ladies of Grace Adieu.) Sometime after I finish that, I will also re-read the Temeraire series for the lead-up to the release of the final book. [*]
I have two books on the Napoleonic Wars already: The Napoleonic Wars: A Very Short Introduction, by Mike Rapport, which I have just started and am appreciating so far, and Napoleon's Wars: An International History, 1803-1815, by Charles Esdaile. I expect these will suffice for my military history needs for JS&MN, but if you have very strong feelings about this topic, feel free (after you see the note below).
The next thing I know that I need is a social history of the UK that includes this time period, to give me context on JS&MN's handling of class, gender, nationality, and race. Do you all have any suggestions?
And what else do I need that I don't know I need? I'm going to have to go much wider on the history, military and otherwise, for Temeraire, but let's put that aside for the moment because it's further away. Is there history or literature or anything that JS&MN is engaging with, that your knowledge of enhanced your appreciation of the book? What is it, and what should I read to get up to speed on it, if possible?
(Note: I am way more likely to follow up on your suggestion if you explain why it is relevant specifically to JS&MN and provide enough information for me to find the work you are suggesting. And while I can probably get many academic works via Chad, it would be extra-useful for you to indicate how accessible an academic work is to someone not part of academia, i.e., me.)
[*] While I did The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit chapter-by-chapter, JS&MN is 69 chapters long, and the Temeraire series is eight novels long, so, uh, no. I've very carefully divided JS&MN up into 13 parts of approximately equal length that do not violate chapter or volume boundaries—seriously, a spreadsheet was involved, it was kind of ridiculous—and will be using the handy three-volume structure to divide up each Temeraire book.
I am very excited about these projects, so thanks for helping me get started!
(PS: those of you who prompted me to pitch these forthcoming re-read series, back in the day, by noting the relative lack of female authors in Tor.com's rereads may be interested in today's launch of Judith Tarr re-reading Melanie Rawn's Dragon Prince trilogy.)
This year's auction will be next month (more soon!). Me, I think it would be annoying to have the 2013 posts tagged with the same tags as the 2014 tags, because it would make it harder to find the new things—"ooh, a book by X! . . . no, comments are closed, it must be from last year."
Should I just delete all the tags? Is there any value in keeping the old tags around somehow for archival/browsing purposes? (There is a spreadsheet index, which is less finely-grained.)
It's possible in the future I may run each auction on its own subdomain, but not this year, didn't start in enough time. (Hmmm, I could move just the 2013 auction posts off to their own blog/subdomain and then redirect links, but it appears that might be a bit tedious? I haven't experimented with this yet at all.)
(Bed, OMG, I knew I had a lot to do but I didn't think it was that much, and that's only the start . . . )
Edit morning: thanks for feedback, and feel free to keep it coming. I think I will strongly consider moving 2013 so I can keep tags and not make the overall tag list incredibly unwieldy as we get more years. I just wish I had planned ahead better and won't have to do this with 2014 later (assuming that it's not possible to run completely separate installs of WP in both a domain's root and a subdirectory, that is, which I'm presuming is the case). Edit 2: apparently not the case! Options, I has them. Thanks, all.
SteelyKid just made me a book about when I was born, so I think it's past time we got her some age-appropriate books about human reproduction. Recommendations? She'll be five this summer (OMG, five) and we'd like something that acknowledges the existence of family structures other than just biological mother + biological father = biological child, the way her actual family contains. Also, brown people. Thanks.
I am moderating a panel tomorrow on fannish migrations, the description for which is:
Online Fandom Migration
Sat 4:00 PM
As the center of fanfiction and other online creative fannish activity moved from individual websites to LiveJournal to AO3 to Tumblr, what changed about fannish culture? What if you don't like the new platform? Who is still hanging out on the old ones and why? And where is it going next?
Kate Nepveu (mod), Arthur D. Hlavaty, Joshua Kronengold, Ben Yalow
But I am not a fanfic writer, nor do I use Twitter much or Tumblr at all, and I suspect that my co-panelists are largely the same.
Since I hate panels that are about something completely different than their descriptions, talk to me! I hope to be able to recruit people at-con, but if not, at least I can bring in second-hand comments and ask for reactions, parallels, etc.?
(The move to AO3 I can talk about, I watched that and I use AO3 as a reader.)
I'm posting this to my little-used Twitter, but do feel free to post it on Tumblr—seriously, the only one I have is for Con or Bust—just please at least drop links here, so I can find the comments? *is aware of irony*
Thanks for helping me make this a better panel!
So I'm thinking of additional ways to raise money for Con or Bust, because the auction is going well but not smashingly (ends tonight! Check it out!), and one thing that occurred to me was a raffle at WisCon (and maybe Readercon, but first things first). So I've just sent in a request for a dealer's table. We'll see if there's space left and if a raffle is okay. Assuming both are good--
I think I have a decent idea about most of the logistics [*] except kind of the most important one, which is getting stuff to raffle.
Because so many people fly to WisCon, the enormous baskets that Operation Hammond was raffling at Arisia don't seem like a good idea. Ideally we're talking small but shiny. But I don't want to impose on people who've already donated stuff to the auction and I don't know how you approach big companies for stuff. I'm going to see if Tempest can talk, but anyone else have experience?
My wish list, based on thinking over spare moments during the last few days:
- Tablets. iPad, iPad mini, Nexus 10, Nexus 7. This is the most pie-in-the-sky item, because they're expensive and almost certainly would have to come from big companies, but boy would they be a draw.
- eReaders. Nook, Kindle (Sony, Kobo?). Same as above.
- Gift certificates. Books: local bookstore Room of One's Own, Book View Cafe, Amazon, B&N. Food (Omaha Steaks? What other fancy places do mail order?)? Zappo's (shoes)?
- Small packages of quality candy (local?).
- Jewelry? Maybe not, there will be a lot of that already there.
- . . . what else?
Anyway. What am I overlooking, is this a horrible idea, does anyone have suggestions? (Please don't contact anyone yet, because if there's no table space then it's a moot point, but I want to get ready to move in case there is.)
[*] I'll bring the netbook and have a spreadsheet set up ahead of time with ticket numbers, and put people's phone #s on the spreadsheet, so there's no question about handwriting, and also ask them if they'll be around Sunday night for the GoH speeches, which is when I'll do the drawing and hand stuff out after. When I've got programming I'll see if a friend can cover the table; I'll also bring the whole shebang to the Carl Brandon party. I'll also have T-shirts for sale. I don't think I can take credit cards, or that the CBS can, but I can have people open up private browsing tabs for PayPal right there, or ask them to use their own computer, include a note, and then come get their tickets/T-shirts.
A while after we switched to cable internet [*] our home network started doing this highly annoying thing--which it is doing right now, in fact--where it would cycle off and then cycle immediately back on, every minute or so. Sometimes rebooting everything helps and sometimes not. It seems to happen mostly at night (possibly there is a temperature correlation, as we haven't turned heat on yet?).Unlike when our DSL would go on the fritz, our internal network also vanishes when it loses the internet (that is, I can't see my desktop from my netbook), so I suspect this means the problem is the router not the cable modem?
[*] I thought I was getting an all-in-one modem plus wireless router from the cable company. The instructions were zero and so I'm not sure if that's what I actually got, and anyway I realized that we still needed the existing router because of the multiple Ethernet connections we use, so I just plugged the modem-possibly-router into the existing router and it worked fine. I'd think any interference from incompatible devices or whatnot would have shown up sooner and not be so intermittent.
Is there a thing kinda like LastPass that I can run off steelypips.org? Or not even with the fancy browser integration, just something that will let me safely decrypt, edit, and encrypt a password list?
Because I definitely like the idea of LastPass, but it's true that they are a big fat target, and if I could get the same functionality (or something approaching it) that's just for me, well, that seems like it would be less of a target. Or does the difficulty of properly implementing such a thing outweigh the possibility that LastPass's data could be obtained, especially if I use a proper master password and turn on two-factor authentication?
(Context 1: right now I use a program that syncs between my desktop and my Palm, but that requires I have physical access to one or the other, and sometimes I don't. (Also, eventually the Palm will go away, of course.))
(Context 2: this very interesting article about password cracking.)
So I've just finished Kalpa Imperial by Angelica Gorodischer (translated by Ursula Le Guin), and now I'm stuck for what to read next.
Here's the problem, the way Kalpa Imperial starts:
The storyteller said: Now that the good winds are blowing, now that we’re done with days of anxiety and nights of terror, now that there are no more denunciations, persecutions, secret executions and whim and madness have departed from the heart of the Empire and we and our children aren’t playthings of blind power; now that a just man sits on the Golden Throne and people look peacefully out of their doors to see if the weather’s fine and plan their vacations and kids go to school and actors put their hearts into their lines and girls fall in love and old men die in their beds and poets sing and jewelers weigh gold behind their little windows and gardeners rake the parks and young people argue and innkeepers water the wine and teachers teach what they know and we storytellers tell old stories and archivists archive and fishermen fish and all of us can decide according to our talents and lack of talents what to do with our life -- now anyone can enter the emperor’s palace out of need or curiosity; anybody can visit that great house which was for so many years forbidden, prohibited, defended by armed guards, locked and as dark as the souls of the Warrior Emperors of the dynasty of the Ellydrovides.
That is, as you can see, kind of a hard act to follow. I'm thinking maybe I want something with a very strong first-person voice? Or something elegantly minimalist? Any suggestions?
(Hmm. Maybe Octavian Nothing, but that might be kind of harsh. I'd go for some nonfiction, but I want strong narrative too.)
ETA: I have just remembered that what I need to do next is review source for a Yuletide beta that I said I'd do, but further recs are welcome all the same.
This has been a less than stellar week, particularly today (Dad's birthday; very tired on many different levels; not nearly as productive as I need to be), so let me borrow something from rivka: ask me something that has nothing whatsoever to do with pregnancy or children. I may decline to answer, or may not have time (see: not nearly as productive as I need to be), but the very fact of the questions may well help.
" . . . but I can't help it, I love him anyway, in a way that is True and Tragic and not at all pathetic."
I feel like there must be examples of this besides Tigana and Acacia, but I am coming up empty. I mean, even the Harry Potter "Death Eaters conquer" AUs I read back in the day were generally plastered with warnings for dubcon and wrongness. Anyone? (I would be particularly interested in any examples written by women.)
New hard drive it is. While my poor sick toddler naps, I shall find the various recovery/install discs that came with the desktop, let the current drive imaging run and if it completes successfully create a rescue disk, if not do as much pulling-of-data as I can, and then go get a new hard drive installed. And it appears that Macrium will let me restore to a drive of a different size, so I will take this opportunity to upgrade the size too.