newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
First up,
Form (March 22nd, 1991)
Discussions on the various forms, novella vs short story, trilogy vs series, in comics and speculative fiction.

Part One: Short Stories: Dave Duncan (on why he thinks SF works best in short stories), Crawford Kilian (on the short story as 'training ground' and area of experimentation), Jim Baen (on the strength of short stories/novellas in SF), Marianne Nelson (on why if you want to get into SF you should start with short stories). Novella/Novellette: Judith Merril (on why the Novella's almost unique to SF), a bit of history. The Serial: Neil Gaiman (on the problems and advantages of writing serial fiction, like his comic the Sandman, and the "Is Little Nell Dead Yet" phenomenon), Chris Claremont (differences on writing a novel and writing an ongoing series, and the why the book and the audience don't have to keep going together)
Part Two: Neil Gaiman (on benefits of writing Good Omens, compared to comic writing). Alternative Comics: Black and White. Gilbert Hernandez (on why Love and Rockets is Black and White), Ty Templeton (on why he enjoys black and white), Kevin Eastman (on problems he encountered in getting Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles published). Novels: Jim Baen (on the benefits of the novel in SF). The Trilogy (and other variations): Guy Gavriel Kay (on the mundane reasons the trilogy has become a standard form in fantasy fiction, on the danger of writers going back to the well), Tanya Huff (on writing a Duology, and the repeated questions about the third book despite the (big spoilers)), a bit of a clip from Misery, Tanya Huff again (on why trilogy and series are so popular), George Zebrowski (on the problems of writing long term series fiction and how they're not artistic)
Part Three: The Graphic Novel: David Lloyd (artist on on V for Vendetta, and whether it benefitted from being repackaged as a Graphic novel), Will Eisner (on why he left serial comics for the Graphic Novel, and pioneering the form with A Contract With God). Conclusion: Dan Piraro (Bizarro, experimenting with animation based on his cartoon panels)

Chaos: (March 14th, 1991)
Chaos theory. A bit more heavy on the science (popularist science reporting that is), side with only a bit of discussion on its use in art/fiction/SF.

Part One James Gleick (explaining Chaos Theory itself, Fractals, the Butterfly Effect and why it took so long to reach the public consciousness), Caleb Howard (computer hacker, on impact of fractals on computer animation)
Part Two: CGi short film Panspermia, Jeff Evans (on sterility and unnatural perfection in computer graphics being corrected by fractals and chaos theory), James Gleick (on the fractalness of Ferns, and to be wary of the human tendency to pattern-recognize). Here's the slow switching over to Chaos theory in art and fiction: Bill Sienkiewicz (on using Fractals in Big Numbers, with Alan Moore, theological/philosophical implications on chaos theory and fractals), Jeff Evans (on that last topic), James Gleick (on misunderstanding of theory in general to extend to social/philosophical problems), the host talks about the tendency of SF writers to misunderstand science or to just use it as gobledegook to base their stories around
Part Three: George Zebrowski (on his reaction to James Gleick book about Chaos Theory), Garfield Reeve-Stevens (on his reaction to the book, and whether he plans to use Chaos theory in his work), Gregory Benford (on using Chaos Theory in SF), Douglas Adams (on his reaction after reading Chaos on how everything seems to fit in with it), James Gleick (on the idea catching fire in the culture at large).

Fear: October 31, 1991

Horror, the use of Fear itself as a theme in fiction, and what scares creators

Part One: Archie Goodwin (on role of fear in storytelling, the "safe scare", Stephen Jones (horror anthologist on the two basic emotions being Fear and Love, and how the best stories combine both, and the best use of fear he's read, the "show or don't show the monster" debate), Tanya Huff (on why we like to be scared, fear being like sex). Some examples of SF that uses Fear in them. Bob Shaw (on why he's so intrigued by fear, and his own phobia, and science as 'pushing away darkness to make us feel better')Part Two: Louis Shiner (on his use of Tesla and his phobias in his story White City), Brian Stableford (on why Fear's begun to play such a large role in his work, particularly his vampire novel the Empire of Fear, the current popularity of Horror, a nice scientific look at the connection between fear and arousal), Neil Gaiman (the role of Fear in Sandman, the difference between Fear and Horror), Pete Milligan and Grant Morrison (on exploring Fear and Dread in their comics, fear as dislocating the mind and the startings of religion)
Part Three: Clive Barker (on different types of fears, and all his personal fears, and why he's using less fear in his book Imajica, and how he doesn't think his early stories really evoked fear, or why fear's not especially interesting on its own, on what medium fear works best in), Jeff Ryman (and the role of Fear in the Wizard of Oz, fear as social control)

And Profiles, an episode where he profiles 3 specific creators, Daniel Clowes (independent comic 8Ball), Peter Straub (horror author), and Marv Newland (animator), but none of them especially interest me so no detailed breakdown (however, Part 2 does contain the complete short film "Bambi Meets Godzilla", done by Newland, and the third part is mostly Straub talking about horror so it works as a nice companion to the Fear ep).
Part One Part Two Part Three

Looking forward to next week, Violence, which I believe has interview bits with Brian Stableford about his pacifist space opera hero, Star Pilot Grainger, the first time I've seen it since I actually read (and loved) the books. PoG was one of the reasons for me trying them, too.

In other news, been having a bit of headaches lately, think it's probably eye strain. Which is annoying, cause I only have one left working and so many things I enjoy doing involve using it. Need perfect cyber-eyes to get invented now. And to become rich and handsome, and not at all socially awkward, so long as I'm dreaming.

TVwise... Glee's 2nd episode wasn't bad, not quite as fun as the first, but okay. Supernatural had its premiere, and, well, it was okay, a few fun bits, a few meh bits, but Bobby is awesome as usual.

Been watching old school Who as usual. I'll probably finish Four's run and then take a break for a while. Not because I specifically want to, but once regular TV starts up again I find I have less time for it since I have more I need to download (often legally, thanks to TV channel websites) that I missed during the regular week. I can pick up with Five in the summer or during the rerun-gaps that crop up every once in a while in the regular season. Just finished Shada, and the season's been reasonably fun. Think the Nightmare of Eden was one of my favorites of the recent batch. As for the big "Which Romana is better" debate? Right now I'm still putting them about even. I don't have a particular preference one way or the other. II has a slightly more friendly chemistry with the Doctor, true, but I kind of liked the slight standoffishness of I. So, again, they're about even, just II had a longer time to shine and slightly better stories, I think, but that's not the actress' fault so I can hardly hold it against that version.

Birthday!

Sep. 10th, 2009 09:30 am
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Happy Birthday [livejournal.com profile] ullat and [livejournal.com profile] irish_star!!
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
But I did not find 20 cents today. (Since last week I found $2, and the week before I found $20). I suppose that's for the best, because if I did, it would probably mean the universe was going to give me its 2 cents next week, and it might decide to take it metaphorically.

No comics, for the dual reason that there's nothing out this week I care about, and if there was, comic day would be delayed till Thursday because of Labour Day. Work was okay. Apparently, I'm a legend in my field. At least that's what the driver said, who had been to our store before long ago and remembered me because I was so fast and apparently had told others about me. And other drivers have usually had complimentary things to say too. So it's always nice to hear. The secret to my speed is a tightly controlled laziness, because I don't get paid by the hour, and the faster I get done the job the sooner I can go home and sleep.

The walk home was a bit sore-making though, because I picked up a lot more groceries on the way than I probably should have and so was walking for about half an hour carrying two full shopping bags and one full bookbag full of stuff. But I could still read while walking, at least until I picked up the milk, bread, and about 4 pounds of ground beef at the grocery store right near my house. And I could still walk up the 4 flights of stairs with all that because elevators are for wusses! However, for all my he-manliness, it might not have been the best idea for my neck and shoulders are still a little sore.

What else? Hmmm. Still in a writing slump, and at the moment even affecting the more frivolous things I do just purely for pointless fun, like my alternate Runaways issue outlines... just don't feel like working on em (though part of that's because I'm in a particularly difficult place), or much of anything. I think my most impressive accomplishment of the last few days was fixing my mouse, and that just took opening it up and popping a little wheel back into place. I'd say I need to get out more, but I have nowhere to go that likely won't just bring me down.
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
That time again...

Februray 14th, 1991 - Projects: (Highlighting a few specific projects by creators in SF, Fantasy, and Comics, in 1991)

Part One: Interviews with Todd McFarlane (on changing the look of Spider-Man and how he writes), Charles Vess (on a Spider-Man story and illustrating a Sandman story about A Midsummer Night's Dream), Neil Gaiman (plans for the Sandman story Seasons of Mists and how he uses overly long chapter titles), George Pratt (on Enemy Ace and using it to make a statement on Vietnam),
Part Two: Interview with Will Eisner (on To The Heart of the Storm), bit of a rant on how SF and comics are disrespected in culture, Interviews with Frank Miller (on Elektra Lives Again and how Lynn Varley's coloring made some big differences), Jack Womack (on the Draco Corporation novels, specifically the 4th novel, Elvissey and the last books), Fabian Nicieza (on editing Barbie comics)
Part Three: Interview with Neil Gaiman (on The Books of Magic), a bit of 'cartoons for adults' but this ep cuts off abruptly before the interview with the creator.

Sci-Fi's True North (February 12, 1990)

Early ep (overuse of cheesy effects, longer interviews on more wide ranging topics), on the Canadian Identity in SF. Kind of a lame ep too.

Part One: Interviews With Lorna Toolis (on Toronto's library SF collection, on whether there's a Canadian style in SF, themes that crop up a lot in Canadian SF compared to US, top Canadian Writers, the Tesseracts collection (of Canadian SF), various magazines and the Canadian SF community), communications with other SF libraries)
Part Two: Bernie Finklestein (Rock & Roll guy and SF fan, on his earliest SF memories, the intersection of Rock & Roll and SF, the 50s paranoia about nuclear annihilation)
Part Three: Kent Burles (Canadian
comic artist, on his Planet of the Apes project, how he works with an American writer long-distance), Dave Ross (Canadian artist, about drawing Wolverine, problems with being a Canadian artist working in an American field, missing deadlines), viewer mail

Will Eisner and the Spirit - October 18th, 1990.
50th anniversary of the Spirit. Just links here, no summaries, because although I respect his contributions, I'm just not personally terribly interested in an ep all about him and the Spirit.

Part One Part Two Part Three

M-Space: Moebius and Merril, Spotlight on comic creator Moebius and SF Author Judith Merril, December 13th, 1990)
Part One: Mail, Interviews with Frank Miller (on Moebius' work), Jean Giraud (Moebius himself, on why he chose to work in comics, how he got started with drawing, why he still does it), Steve Leialoha (on why he likes Moebius' work), Moebius (on his collaborationals with filmmaker Alexandro Jodorowsky), Sergio Aragones (on Jodorowsky), Steve Bissette (on Moebius and Jodorowsky's comic colaboration Eyes of the Cat)
Part Two: Moebius (on The Incal, how he got into Science Fiction, Trina Robbins (raving about Moebius and why they have small audiences), Moebius (on how he sees himself). Switch in topic to Merril. Interviews with Judith Merrill (on how she got into writing Science Fiction, nice story about Ted (Theordore Sturgeon?)convinced her to try writing Science Fiction), Guy Gavriel Kay (on Merril's importance in improving the quality of the actual writing in science fiction), Merril (on being one of the very few women writers over her time, on her derivative novels she co-wrote super quickly, that became the most popular thing she's written)
Part Three: Merril's influence on an editor, introducing the New Wave, Interviews with Merril (on producing an anthology, producing Tesseracts Canadian SF anthology, why she left the US permanently for Canada during the Vietnam War, the Roshdale experiment, bringing her huge SF collection with her and so starting the Spaced Out Library, the SF Library in Toronto (now known as the Merril Collection))

(Next week's should be better, Form, Chaos, and Fear)


---

Now that that's done, what else is new? Long weekend technically, but not for me, cause I still work. But yay, extra money. And yay for September, because it means the dry season for TV is nearing a close. I think most things I watch or am interesting in starting to watch start NEXT week, but there's a trickle here and there.

So far there's just one show that's hit my attention index, and it's a bit of a surprising one. Glee. Apparently it aired the first ep last year after American Idol, but since I don't care about that I never even heard about it, and just saw commercials and, last Wednesday, when it was on and nothing else was, decided to give it a try. ANd, y'know, I liked it. Which is odd, because I don't listen to music, so that it's set around a new Glee Club full of social rejects doing musical numbers doesn't do anything for me. And the show is a bit predictable and obvious in some ways. But it's also had a bit of a quirkyness to it that I liked. I think I like it in part because it hits on a couple of my squeepoints (like squickpoints, but opposite). (more behind cut). Read more... ) I'm not 100% sold on it, but I liked it enough to give it a couple episodes to try out.
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Anyway, work was okay, but way delayed. Meh, oh well. And I didn't find $20 again this time, but I did find $2. If this patterns hold, next wednesday I should find 20c.

Since there's no comics, I'll do a Book Foo.

Finished: Tehanu, The Last Book of Earthsea, by Ursula K. LeGuin
Started: Battle Royale, by Koushun Takami (reread)

The only reason I read this was because it was a Nebula winner (and I wouldn't be surprised if it was one of those "let's award it for the last book because in retrospect the whole series probably deserved one before" type feelings). I didn't read any other Earthsea books. And... well, it fell kinda flat for me. It really did read sort of like a book that briefly visits characters from other books and gives a 'where are they now', with the basics of a plot behind it. Or, more accurately, it felt like an epilogue rather than a conclusion. Maybe if I read the rest, it would be more satisfying. But it was just sort of okay, and didn't really do anything for me, nor did the setup of the world and how magic work really interest me in reading the rest of Earthsea.

Finished: Ventus, by Karl Schroeder (reread)

It's a reread, so I don't have too much in the way of comments. It does seem to lose a bit on the reread... it's still enjoyable, and I like the way that he subverts expectations with many people you'd expect to be in the 'villain' role actually being rather reasonable people who happen to be at odds, but on the whole not quite as cool as I remembered it. Contrast to Lady of Mazes which does reread quite well. Also a couple disconnects continuity-wise between the two novels and descriptions/origins of certain things, but nothing that couldn't be explained by some sort of virulent censorship/rewriting of history etc.

Started and Finished: A Deepness in the Sky by Vernor Vinge (reread)
Read it many times, so no need to go into detail. Only slight twist this time around is that I'm reading the series in chronological order instead of publication (and preferred reading) order, which is a bit interesting, but nothing stands out especially about that experience so far.
Started: A Fire Upon the Deep, by Vernor Vinge (reread)
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
February 28, 1991 - Marketing & Merchandising.

Not an especially interesting episode to me, but for completeness' sake, and there's a bit of interest here.

Part One: Spider and Jeanne Robinson on Marketing of SF and what audience to target, Jack Vance on how Dune had trouble getting published and how it gained its appeal and sequels, Spider Robinson on an autograph session and a particularly stupid distributor, Guy Gavriel Kay on the prevelance of fantasy and its commercial success and how success attracts hacks, Jim Baen on the crowded marketplace and the sales life-cycles of books, Terry Brooks on how he explains his sales.
Part Two: George R. R. Martin on whether he considers himself a "science fiction" writer and the difficulty of marketting writers who don't fit into boxes, Peter Straub on readers expectations of writers can cause problems, Bob Kane on the Batman marketting machine growing from the 80s movie, and the danger of overexposure, Kevin Eastman on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and how marketting made it a megabrand, James L. Brooks on the merchandising of the Simpsons, Sam Simon on whether think the merchandising is overwhelming the show
Part Three: Matt Groening on why the Simpsons show itself is popular, Fabian Nicieza on marketting of concepts and why certain comics (Todd McFarlane) get super marketting gimmicks). Bill Marks on the marketting of Todd McFarlane's Spider-Man and his invention of sealed bagged comics, and marketting to try to direct people to the good, and stangnation of the comic industry and trying to diversify the industry (in 1991)


April 11, 1991 - Villains in SF, comics, and fantasy:
Part One: General introduction and a quote about Villains by Mary Wollstoncraft, Comics first. Interviews with Max Allan Collins (on Dick Tracy's Villains), Montage of comic creators on what makes good villains and favorite villains (Archie Goodwin, Louise Simonson, Mike Mignola), Fabian Nicieza (on what makes a good supervillain and well-motivated villains, the remotivating of Lex Luthor), Gregory Benford (If the 'idea' in a SF novel is the hero, what's the villain), Nancy Kress (on creating villains in SF with complexity)
Part Two: Jack Womack (on the lack of real villains in his Draco books), Charles de Lint (on what makes a great fantasy villain), Tanya Huff (same topic), Ty Templeton (on favorite comic book villain, Luthor, and why, and also on how the Joker complements Batman so well), Kate Worley (on the lack of individual villains in Omaha, the Cat Dancer as opposed to corporate or systemized evil)
Part Three: Steve Bissett (on the more recent nuanced view of evil in comics, and his feelings on what caused it for him - Watergate), Neil Gaiman (the problem of villains, and how they're just people, with good and bad in them), and moving on to the Serial Killer as the last bastion of pure evil, with Peter Straub (on the fascination with serial killers in fiction compared with the almost mundanity of the real facts of them), Garfield Reeve-Stevens (on the power and appeal of the Joker)

January 31, 1991 - Voice/American Artform

Whether comic books and SF are international artforms or there's a strong 'American' voice to them, and a look at some other country voices.
Part One: Some extended jokes about a Canadian-voice Star Trek, Interviews with Nancy Kress (on how classic SF started as British, even if they weren't always marketted as SF, whereas American SF was ghettoized), Candas Jane Dorsey (on the origins of US SF and being extremely formulaic, and various phases of SF), Gregory Benford (on the US not being great on the traditional forms, and how the strength was in their 'invented' genres, and why good SF elsewhere in the world isn't widely popular), Jim Baen (whether there's still an American voice in SF, and what it is, and how the experience of Vietnam altered American SF's voice),

Part Two: Nancy Kress (on one of the persistant theme of American SF), Jean Giraud/Moebius (on whether SF is an American form, or an English-language form, and the differences in his (French) outlook and how it influences his work, and whether he feels comics are an American artform or European), Harlan Ellison (on comic books as one of the 5 native US artforms even though it's exploded wildly elsewhere), Will Eisner (on greater respect in Europe for comic artists than in the US), Denys Cowan (the view of American comics, in America, as 'trash'), Bill Sienkiewicz (on the new energy of comics in US and England, in the early 90s), Chester Brown (on his Canadian autobiographical comic Yummy Fur, and how much Canada influences his work and what Canadian readers get out of his story), some speculation on whether a canadian setting is enough to make something Canadian, and how Americans often write Canadian settings incomics like Alpha Flight.
Part Three: Editor of Canadian short SF Anthology "On Spec", Marianne Nelson (on the 'Canadian voice in Science Fiction'), Judith Merril (on how the looming presence of the environment in Canadian lives makes us more inclined towards SF even in mainstream works), Garfield and Judith Reeves-Stevens (on whether there's a particular Canadian voice in SF, and their view of no), Candas Jane Dorsey (on Canadian SF, and why it's so hard to recognize the Canadian SF community), Dave Duncan (the lack of the size of Canadian market making it hard to create a market for Canadian SF, but they do well across the border), Tanya Huff (about how Canadian settings are being a bit trendy), Spider Robinson (on his belief that Canadians are coming out of the closet), Guy Gabriel Kay (on it being okay to be a Canadian writer now, in general), Tanya Huff (on how we're between US and British styles)

April 18, 1991 - Ecology
Part One: Douglas Adams (on his non-fiction book about endangered species and how he came to write it, and some stuff about Madagascar), Garfield and Judith Reeves-Stevens (on why SF and Ecology are nothing new to SF, even if they're especially popular lately), Spider Robinson (about David Brin's novel Earth), Robert J. Sawyer (on Face of God, and a sort of eco-conscious aliens), Julian Grant on ecological themes in SF movies being as early as the 50s
Part Two: Steve Bissette (on Swamp Thing and how it evolved ecologically, and how DC lost interest in the ecological message after they left), Ty Templeton (on Clorophyll Kid and designing a terminally-ill Raccoon mascot for the Canadian government that wasn't looked upon too kindly), Gregory Benford (on whether technology and its waste byproducts will destroy us and why technology itself isn't a bad thing), Spider Robinson (on what he hopes from future technology and nanotechnology), Lewis Shiner and Larry Niven (on two competing ideas, why looking for technological solutions are a little wrongheaded, vs terraforming the Earth), Nancy Kress (on how the contradictory reports make it hard for the layman to really get a sense of how much, if any, danger there is)
Part Three: James Trefil (on how much science you need to know to understand the environmental issues), Gregory Benford (on why he feels people opposed to Nuclear Power usually aren't thinking things through). Pamela Sargent (on Terraforming, specifically terraforming Venus, and the moral issues behind it), Lois McMaster Bujold (on terraforming in Barrayar novels, and whether she thinks its too dangerous to try, and views on Nature, and whether smart is actually a survival characteristic long term), Douglas Adams (on sliding towards the edge of disaster, and whether humanity will go extinct, and his lack of despair at the idea)
newnumber6: (chase)
Well, for me it was, at least. Why? Because as I was walking from work to the comic store, and reading my book while walking as I normally do, my attention was caught by something on the sidewalk ahead of me. There was, lying in a tiny puddle of water (it'd been raining) was a $20 bill! Woot! Nobody around who looked like they might have dropped it, so I picked it up and used it to buy my comics.

This week I got two books:

New Mutants #4 (not bad, maybe a tiny bit lacking punch as a conclusion, but solid)
Runaways #13 (Worst of the Immonen arc so far)

Full reviews as usual at my comic reviews site for anyone interested.

Also, since I had the extra cash and was hungry, on the way home, I bought a gyro. A Lamb gyro, because it was the only store I've seen in a while that advertises it as an option on the sign outside (I'm sure more offer it, but if I can't see it outside I wouldn't go in to look). It was pretty good, only problem is the guy considered lettuce (and, oddly, a few french fries) as part of the standard gyro build. Lettuce does not work with a gyro, IMHO, it kind of dilutes the flavour. Fries wasn't bad, it just soaked up tzatziki juice. But anyway, it was still a gyro, just not the best I've had.

Work was okay, but rainy a bit which isn't the funnest to work in.

Birthday

Aug. 26th, 2009 06:56 am
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Happy Birthday [livejournal.com profile] davidkevin!!

Birthday!

Aug. 25th, 2009 07:29 am
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Happy birthday to [livejournal.com profile] bachicka and [livejournal.com profile] monkeykong!!
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Wow, over the last week or so a whole lot of Prisoners of Gravity eps have appeared on Youtube. So, I'll do my usual link thing. Probably a couple/few a week till I catch up. I know my flist doesn't care about it, but I love this stuff and the interviews with SF authors on SF topics, so nyah.

Time Travel (December 1992)
Part One: Host Introductions and brief history of Time Travel in fiction, Interviews with L. Sprague deCamp (on Lest Darkness Fall, and inspirations for writing it, and problems in time travel of dealing with/understanding earlier versions of one's own tongue), Michael Moorcock ("Behold the Man", on why Time Travel's so compelling, and his novella/novel), John Gribbin (on the scientific plausibility of Time Travel)
Part Two: Gregory Benford (on his novel Timescape and time-reversibility of scientific equations, paradoxes), Geoffrey Landis (on drawing on Dirac's theories of time in his story Ripples in the Dirac Sea), Robert Silverberg (Ugly Little Boy/Up the Line, on the narrative choice to not go into much detail on the science, and his favorite time travel stories), Spider Robinson (on Heinlein's story "All You Zombies", full spoilers)
Part Three: Joe Haldeman (on his nebula award winning story The Hemmingway Hoax), Connie Willis (on Firewatch and Doomsday Book, and why her time travellers mess with the past, and on the perspective of future compared to the presence, plus a bit of talking about her not-at-that-point-released book To Say Nothing of the Dog)

Shared Worlds: (December 1992)
Part One: Interviews with James Morrow (on his objections to 'fiction to order' and shared worlds as literature by committee being anti-art, and yet his own contributions), C.J. Cherryh (on the shared world as a new literary form, and how the process tends to work), George R.R. Martin (on Wild Cards, and advantages/disadvantages of shared world setup and how multiple authors points of view can avoid making the author's moral views 'succeed')
Part Two: Neil Gaiman (on pitfalls of shared worlds to avoid, and how Sandman, one of his most famous works, is a shared world character he doesn't own, so how does he protect it), Fabian Nicieza (on how the X-books all fit together into one continuity. he also gets spit on), John Byrne (on keeping characters 'pure' in a shared world and correcting things you don't like in other works "right now" as opposed to waiting till they're gone, and Next Men, benefits of owning your own characters vs working on company characters), Walt Simonson (on playing in others sandboxes in comics)
Part Three: Peter David (on attractions of writing in shared worlds - Marvel, Trek, compared to the problems of being restricted in what you can do with the characters), J.M. Dillard (working on Star Trek novels, and how working with established characters is something of a 'free ride', but also restrictions), Judith and Garfield Reeve-Stevens (on writing Prime Directive, on how you maintain suspense when you know that the characters can't really be in any danger, and how you approach writing 'famous' characters), Harlan Ellison (on how he abhors shared worlds and that anyone who gets involved with them serves the devil)

Medea/Murasaki (Shared Worlds Part II) (December 1992)
Continuation of last episode: A look at two specific shared world concepts, one developed by Harlan Ellison himself, the second designed as Medea's "heir".

Part One: Origins of Medea in 1975, and the worldbuilding specs of the world, designed by the likes of Poul Anderson, Hal Clement, Larry Niven, Frederick Pohl, and others. Interviews with Harlan Ellison (on how it all started), Robert Silverberg (on receiving the specs and discussing them over dinner, and the seminar), notes about the biology of the Fuxes.
Part Two: Frank Kelly Freas (who did paintings and illustrations for the project, on the Fuxes unique life-cycle, Harlan Ellison (on choosing the last two writers after the seminar, and why only one female author was included), Kate Wilhelm (on her story for the book), Jack Williamson (on coming in late), Robert Silverberg (on writing the second-last story in the book, and forcing Harlan to write the last), Harlan Ellison (on what he thinks of Medea increasing the popularity of shared worlds). Introduction to Murasaki, designed as a fundraising effort, and some of the specs (by Pohl and Poul)
Part Three: Interviews with Frederick Pohl (on the different approaches to worldbuilding in Medea and Murasaki), David Brin (on how he got involved), Gregory Benford (on whether Murasaki is different/groundbreaking enough to warrant the effort, his arguments against the 'anti-art' argument, and failures of Murasaki), Nancy Kress (on being the only female author in Murasaki, and working with someone else's aliens), Robert Silverberg (on whether he things Murasaki lived up to Medea, and why Medea's out of print)

(Man, I wish we still had Prisoners of Gravity around).

Birthday

Aug. 17th, 2009 04:22 am
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Happy Birthday [livejournal.com profile] calliopes_pen!!
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
No comics of course. New Mutants seems to be running a little less-than-monthly, since I should have been out to get that by now, and it wasn't on the list for next week either. At this rate, it might come out along with Runaways, making it only one trip to the comic store this month.

Work was okay, though hot. Quite hot. As was the walk home. Sweat got in my eye which is always a pain.

In other news, Neil Gaiman won the Hugo for his novel The Graveyard Book, making me once again one short of having completed all the winners. DAMN YOU NEIL GAIMAN! I was actually semi-rooting for Cory Doctorow's Little Brother because I've read and enjoyed it, but Gaiman's usually a good read so I have no qualms about buying another one. The other big Hugo news for me was Whedon and Doctor Horrible's Sing-A-Long Blog winning the Hugo for best Short Form movie/tv/video

And... yes, something I've been waiting for for a while. AMC has announced that it will be adapting Robert Kirkman's comic "The Walking Dead" as a series. That's right, an ongoing zombie survival TV series. I've only read bits and pieces of the comic (I have a series interest-block on Black & White stuff), but what I've read seems pretty good. (Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] angelophile on the heads up on that) Maybe this will make up for AMC's travesty of the Prisoner. (Okay, I'm pre-judging there, which I shouldn't do. But it's so FUN! I will watch that and give it a fair chance, even if some of what I've seen does not fill me with excitement).

Found an announcement on what the 'Big Disaster' in the upcoming (midseason) series "Day One" is. Here. I dunno, normally I'd be all over that as a TV series premise, but somehow it seems less than what I'd hoped for _that_ as a series. Oh well, still probably worth a look.
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Thought at first I might not be able to go, on account of thunderstorms around noonish. However, they cleared up, and so I shambled towards the Danforth looking for Gyros like zombies shamble towards human flesh.

The shambling was due to the slight mugginess in the air despite the recent thunderstorm. Not the most pleasant. Crowd looked a bit thinner than in recent years, but possibly also because of the storm.

Anyway, my hunger was sated, and it was delicious, although it could have been saucier. I'm talking about the gyro, of course, I assume the human flesh was about its usual level of sauce.

Also enjoyed some honey balls with cinammon. I should stress once again I am not talking about human flesh. Just to be safe.

Other news, well, there's not much else. Almost finished Romana I's tenure on Who. She's not bad, maybe a tiny bit grating in the first serial but got over it quickly. Have to see about II.

Not much new in TV yet here. Checked out the first episode of Defying Gravity, which was described everywhere as "Grey's Anatomy in Space". And.... well, that about sums it up, actually. But I liked early Grey's Anatomy. Science seems a bit wonky at times but at least it's not horrifically bad. It's watchable so far, that's all I can say, and as we're still in summer dead zone for TV, watchable's good enough to keep watching.

Birthday

Aug. 9th, 2009 07:40 am
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Happy Birthday [livejournal.com profile] allegroconmolto!!
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
But work. Which is somewhat nicer now that they changed the time to earlier. Since I didn't have comics to pick up afterwards, I got home around noon and had the afternoon to myself.

In other news, I finally got around to watching Romero's Diary of the Dead this weekend. It was... okay. Some good ideas, but too much crap that didn't work and the performances weren't all that hot. A bit more detailed, a bit more spoilery, behind the cut.
Read more... )

In other news, I've been experimenting with Twitter. Mostly just to prove to myself that my updates would be as boring as I'd imagined they'd be every time I thought about doing Twitter. So far that bears out.

Oh, and the Ships & Giggles Forum, my last remaining message board forum to discuss comics and such, died a couple months ago, apparently due to accident with one of the site admins or something. Well, it's back in a new location finally. So, there's that. I don't think any of my flist were regulars there, but for me it's nice at least.

Birthday!

Aug. 4th, 2009 07:03 am
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Happy Birthday [livejournal.com profile] foxfyre!!!!!!!!
newnumber6: (otp)
Continued from last post. First post of this whole series is here, for explanation purposes.

Let's get right to it.
Read more... )
Edit: Now continued here.
newnumber6: (chase)
Okay, so here's a continuation of my last WIDW, which was what I'd do with if I was writing Runaways

Vol 3 (in outline form, rather than full script or anything. Read the first post for my general rules of play and explanations for this, and of course for the first batch of issues. We'll start here with the next 12 issues, #12-24 (spread over two posts)
Read more... )
Continued here.

Book Foo

Jul. 25th, 2009 03:34 pm
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
Finished: Weapons of Choice, by John Birmingham

Thoughts behind the cut. Short version: Enjoyed the premise, execution was a bit dry and uninteresting at parts. Not many plot-specific spoilers ahead beyond general plot outline. Read more... ) I'd read the rest of the series but I'm not salivating over it- I'll happily wait until I find it in a used bookstore.
Started and Finished: Sunstorm, by Stephen Baxter and Arthur C. Clarke
Started: Tehanu, the Last Book of Earthsea by Ursula K. LeGuin (Nebula Winner, forgot to mention I got it Wednesday).

Thoughts on Sunstorm. Slightly spoilery for both it and the previous novel in the series, as well as for Stargate, by analogy. Short version: Okay, but a bit meh, and didn't even have the coolness of the first book. Probably would have been better off skipping it. Read more... )

Finished: Woken Furies, by Richard Morgan (reread)
Started: Ventus, by Karl Schroeder (reread)

Woken Furies is a reread, so I don't have much to say. Enjoyed it of course, and I probably will reread the series again at some point. I did make a bit of a connection to why the main character interests me, and I should have made it earlier, considering his name. (Some spoilers)Read more... )

What else is new in my life? Not a whole lot, sadly. My life is pretty stagnant. Wake up, hang around on the internet wasting time that isn't at work, just making it through one day after another. Don't go out much other than work, shopping, and occasional grocery stuff. Don't even especially feel like my old hobbies like icon-making, and most of my discussion forums have disappeared, yet I haven't found anywhere to replace them, probably because most of them are comic related and I'm down to two comics a month now, and not as excited about either as I once was. Meh.

Speaking of, working a bit again, after taking something of a break, on my Runaways Vol 3 outline, thanks to a couple positive comments that energized me a bit. May post the outlines for issues #12 to 24 in the next few weeks, rocketting me right past where the real book is now.

TVwise nothing much is on, just reality shows (so I am watching Big Brother I guess), and downloading old Who's. (And man, Global, how many times do you have to air The Unit in one week... don't you have other shows to air?). Thinking of rewatching another old series, maybe Veronica Mars, to help fill the empty hours. SDCC's on now but no news has particularly excited me. New trailer for Stargate Universe looks interesting enough, but that's about it. But still a couple days left for it.

But overall, meh. I'd say I need a life, but the truth is I probably wouldn't know what to do with it is I had one.
newnumber6: Ghostly being (Default)
This week I got one book:

Captain Britain and MI13 #15 (sigh... last issue. But it went out pretty well, great issue)
Runaways #12 (okay... I think the magic may have left some, though)

Full reviews as usual at my comic reviews site for anyone interested.

Speaking of Runaways, had a dream with them in it. Them and zombies. Not the ones they fought though, these were actual undead. Although they weren't traditional zombies exactly, they had some variations Read more... )

Work was okay. They moved it to earlier in the day now so that I'll be getting comics after instead of before, but the time it'll take to do both works out about the same, and, on those weeks when I don't have comics (I'm only reading 2 books a month now that Captain Britain's gone, so that means at most I need to go every other week on average), I get home a lot earlier. Some other stuff happened that is a bit more mehhy and urge-to-kill risingish, but I don't particularly feel like talking about it, and it's still in a "see where it goes" stage.

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