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“Any sufficiently analyzed magic is indistinguishable from science.” - Girl Genius, by Kaja & Phil Foglio

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C. Clarke

Perspective, it's all about perspective ...

Monday, January 20, 2014

A Few Random Links

Because I don't have much to say, here are some other folks saying stuff:

Up first, John Scalzi with a baseball - writing metaphor:

Next, Chuck Wendig on characters:

A bit of Aussie science to offset the writing:

The marvelous follow-up by CSIRO:

And some music. I learned a bit of ukulele on the Hawaiian cruise. This piece by Amanda Palmer reminded me how fun an instrument this is.

It has a brief intro about her before she sings.

For those who don't know, Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman are married. (Segue back to writing!)

Happy Monday. Back to editing my story now...

Monday, January 6, 2014

I Do Read Books, Honest!

I try to post what I've read quarterly. Dropped that ball in 2013! There were two books posts, one in May, with all of five books, and another one in July with eight more books. Here's what I read between  early July and the end of the year.  

(13) Vonda N McIntyre, Starfarers. First book in the Starfarers Quartet. I've always loved McIntyre's fiction and this book made me finally realize why. Her SF is primarily biology based, which is far more appealing to me (a biologist) than purely techy stuff. 

(14) Vonda N McIntyre, Transition. Book two in the Starfarers Quartet. Loving this series!

(15) Vonda N McIntyre, Metaphase. Book three in the Starfarers Quartet. I haven't found a paper copy of book four (Nautilus) yet. I'm gonna have to buy the ebook from Book View Cafe. Must read all the books! 

(16) Mary Robinette Kowal, Glamour in Glass.  Continuing adventures of Jane and Vincent of Shades of Milk and Honey (see July post). I enjoyed this book more because the story line didn't feel as close to Austin.  Also really like how the author limits herself to the vocabulary of the Regency. 

(17) Mary Robinette Kowal, Without a Summer. More Jane and Vincent, and another good one. There will be more books in this series. 

(18) Amy Thomson, Storyteller. I met Ms Thomson at WisCon. This is the first book of hers I've read. It was really interesting and I haven't cried that often while reading in a long time (hit the mommy buttons hard for me). Good SF. 

(19) Ursula Vernon, Digger Omnibus. Oh, people. Read this book! A practical wombat (that's Digger), oracular slug, talking statue, Shadowchild, Ed.  Just some of the marvelous characters you'll meet here. 

(20) Terry Pratchett, Hogfather. Because I always read this book in December. It's traditional. Just checked my list and this is my only Pratchett book for the year. That is very untraditional!

Twenty books in a year is not much, but it's better than I did in 2012, when I read only fifteen. And I didn't read any from September through November because I was writing and cruising. 

It was a year for series: two short story collections by LeGuin, three books in Kowal's Glamourist Histories, the three books of Elliott's Spiritwalker Trilogy, and three of the four books in McIntyre's Starfarer's Quartet. 

I read books by seven authors new to me: Jared Diamond, Skyler White, Steven Brust, Mary Robinette Kowal, Madeline Robins, Kate Elliott, and Amy Thomson. That's a good thing. 

I still have many books in my To Be Read pile, including more authors new to me. It's going to be fun. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Winter in the Midwest

It's cold here and will be getting colder. Yes, I know it's worse in Wisconsin, Minnesota and the Dakotas, but this is where I am.

Currently it's 14 (-10), the wind's blowing at 21 mph. Wind chill is about -4 (-20). We have more than a foot of snow on the ground, judging from the snow 'hats' on the bushes.

That's the view from my open garage door, looking toward the main entrance to our building. The snow wasn't plowed today, but you can see the mound on the left there from previous plowings.