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Prisoners of Gravity to start off with again.

Writers' Workshops/Clarion - November 10, 1993
More advice for writers, this time on how to become a better writer and focusing on the various Writer's Workshops.

Part One: Damon Knight (on how Clarion is set up), Kate Wilhelm (on what Clarion/other writer workshops does for a writer, and the 'writer's apprenticeship' period), Kristine Katheryn-Rusch (on what Clarion instructors do to encourage), Connie Willis (on how critiquing other people's work is what makes you a better writer), Geoff Ryman (on the training your own editor),
Part Two: Connie Willis (on her approach to teaching writing, and the importance of plotting as a skill), Nina Kiriki Hoffman (Clarion graduate, reading a bit of a story she did at Clarion, and giving her reaction to turning it in), Kim Antieu (on why Clarion tends to lead to getting successfully published), James Alan Gardner (on advice he got at Clarion that didn't particularly work for him, a Frost quote about writing vs talking about the stories), Kate Wilhelm (on how there's multiple ways to write), story about Harlan Ellison being kicked out of a writing class, Harlan Ellison (on inspiring fear in his Clarion students, and how everyone thinks they can write),
Part Three: Harlan Ellison continued (breaking the spirit of dilettantism, and giving The Great Secret of Writing), William F. Wu (about how something Harlan Ellison said inspired him for the story he's best known for), Geoff Ryman (on what Clarion gives participants than what they did before), Connie Willis (on the Clarion Slump, and learning to write in very small bits when you have very limited time), general advice, More on Nina Kiriki Hoffman's story reading.

Games: November 3, 1993
SF Authors using games people play for story fodder.

Part One: Terry Pratchett (reading from Small Gods), Lynda Barry (on her comic character Marlys who creates her own games, and why kids like inventing their own games), Poul Anderson (on "The Immortal Game", a story about a chess game from the point of a chessman), John Brunner (on adapting a real chess game and disguising it as a novel), Greg Bear (on Anvil of Stars, in which he has characters introducing chess, a zero sum game, to a pacifist alien race),
Part Two: Kristine Kathryn-Rusch (on poker playing a big role in her DS9 novel The Big Game and how poker reflects how people think), David Brin (on why the 'Game of Life' is important in Glory Season), Nancy Kress (on her story Touchdown which involves a game centered around the ruined planet Earth), Iain M. Banks (on the importance of Play, and how we use games much like animals use play, just on a different level, and the growing importance of games to simplify the complexity of life, and designing the game of Azad in The Player of Games),
Part Three: Steven Barnes (on real role playing games vs Dream Park, and why he doesn't game), Sean Stewart (on Dreamquest, a LARP, and how the difference between fantasy novel writing), Pierre Savoie (RPgamer, on how reading Ringworld the novel improves the experience of Ringworld the RPG, and how RPG can give insights to a novel universe its based on), David Pringle (on editing novels/short stories for Games Workshop based on Warhammer, Warhammer 40k, etc, and one particular book set in Near Future Earth)

Awards: January 28, 1993
Awards and what they mean to the creators who get them.
Part One: Kristine Kathryn-Rusch (on how important different awards are to SF writers), list of dfifferent awards, Samuel R. Delany (on the impact of winning many Hugos and Nebula awards), Jerry pournelle (on the benefit of awards giving a good break), John Brunner (on how awards don't transform your career instantly, but improves your long-term sales), Sharyn McCrumb (on how publishers work and how awards alter your treatment, and how sometimes they can be meaningless based on who's giving the awards), Joe Haldeman (on how the Forever War winning the Hugo, Nebula, and Ditmar, affected him, and the political aspects to awards)
Part Two: Nancy Kress (on her first Nebula award having no visible effect on her), James Morrow (on Nebula winning having a big psychological impact and getting him on the map, and the role of politics in the Nebula), Lisa Tuttle (on declining the Nebula Award for 1981), Gibson (on winning the triple award for Neuromancer, and how the location of the Worldcon might have helped him win the Hugo)
Part Three: Story about Neil Gaiman winning a World Fantasy Award and them rewriting the rules so comics can't be nominated, Neil Gaiman (on the effect of his awards being mainly to terrify him), Dave Gibbons (on winning the special Hugo Award for Watchmen), Harlan Ellison (on how him winning awards pisses people off, his thoughts about his award winning short story, Jeffty is Five, his disdain for awards, awards being detrimental to the writer), PoG itself winning an Aurora Award.

That's the last of the PoGs posted to Youtube at the moment, so next week I probably won't be doing any more.
In PoG related news, I think Neil Gaiman may be cyberstalking me. Well, not really, but it's more fun to say it that way. It's just that last week, right after I posted about the PoG episodes I watched (including two with him in it), he posted on twitter a link to the same ep. About 2 hours after. That might just be a weird coincidence, but it's the second time something like that's happened with him where I post something fairly obscure involving him that's been around for a while, and he posts about it elsewhere within hours. (Of course, more likely either there's an intermediate step of sharing from people I know, or he's got a Google Alert out on himself. If the latter's true, Hi there!).

In other TV news, lets see... not really much to talk about, actually. SGU was a not bad episode, but (spoilers ahead, and more unanswered questions) didn't like the cliffhanger, which means yet ANOTHER episode focused on "we're all going to die". And people acting stupidly in general (I mean, I can see searching the ship for something _useful_ that might solve their problems, but going around turning things on is just dumb).

I was also sure that the dive into the gas giant was collecting fuel to make energy instead of JUST aerobraking. Maybe next week's will reveal that was part of it though (if so, the trip to the sun might be another designed part of it).

I find Rush is my favorite character so far, they're doing really well with him, almost like a Rodney McKay type except instead instead of annoyingness and ego mixed with brilliance and occasional moments of humanity, it's more brilliance and ruthless determination mixed with humanity. The moments of humanity are the best parts though.

Seem to be doing a bit more on deliberate 'sex appeal'/'fan service' in this series than ever before and, while the manly part of me appreciates it on some levels, it does feel a little sort of immature, trying too hard.

Another unanswered tech question:
*Why* can the Destiny only reach certain stargates 'within range'? Normally stargates can reach anywhere in the galaxy. Is it a power issue, the Destiny not being able to generate a long-distance wormhole (or maybe all the gates in this galaxy being like that, so travelling can only occur via hops rather than going anywhere point to point)? Something specific to do with Destiny being a mobile gate, that it can only get local gates to 'recognize' it's authority? Or could it not be the gate itself, but rather a sensor issue - that is, the Destiny doesn't know where there _are_ gates, but can only sense them within a certain range. Something needs to be explained there.


And, finally had Thanskgiving, since family was working last week. And actually some was working this week too, so it was a bit of a small affair with lots of leftovers. Was good... turkey, roast potatoes, ham, carrots, greek rice, french stick bread, pretty awesome gravy, pumpkin pie with whipped cream. Was quite good, and ofcourse nice to see family that I haven't seen in a while.
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newnumber6

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