I kept meaning to write a holiday episode of Trevor and Jason, but it just never came together. Have some of the spanakopita that Inner Jason stress-baked instead.

A new year means a fresh slate of Media Consumption; year eleven was firmly in the "meh" zone, with 92 books and 45 films Consumed, and I note in passing that I still haven't finished stabilising that blanket either. Onward to year twelve, assuming we live all the way through 2017:

Media Consumption List, 2017 )
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And all that remains is the assembly; once I've got the pieces woven together and sewn at the edge, I shall have a blanket that's about... um, six foot square. Yeeeeah. Surprisingly, did not have to buy any additional yarn, though my worsted-weight stash is pretty well cleaned out and I'll have to nick one skein back from Mum for the edging.

Onward to other ongoing yearlong endeavours: 2016 marks year eleven of Media Consumption lists, with year ten coming in at 146 books, and 57 films, and ten years tilting at this bloody windmill at a grand total of 965 books and 491 films. Um. Yes. If anyone cares to check the math, go ahead, I'll just be lying here with a cold cloth over my eyes. On to the second ten years:

Media Consumption List, 2016 )
The "knit a blanket in a year or die trying" project has begun. Specs are as follows:
  • source: a 366-swatch perpetual desk-calendar.
  • yarn: Lion Brand 'fishermans wool', currently 4x400yds on-hand. I'll need a bit of some contrasting colour for a couple of the swatches, I'll rummage through my scraps-bin when I get to those.
  • needles: US#4/3.5mm, which is a bit tight for this yarn but I'm thinking ahead to the cumulative size of this many swatches...
  • swatch size: having looked through the entire calendar, the biggest swatches will need a 30-stitch and/or 30-row format, so I'm making them all that 30x30 size; this results in a swatch that's about 4" wide by 3" high on these needles.
  • layout:...and then doing more maths, the best way to arrange the resulting mountain of knitting will be to knit the swatches in strips of 28 (because although I am quite clearly mad, I'm not mad enough to set myself up for that much sewing-together) and then seam these strips together; 28 times 3"-high by 13 times 4"-wide should come out to about 4 feet by 7 feet, with two swatches left over in case of whatever contingency may arise (IE encounters with purple soda, or general un-knit-ability).


So. Um. Wish me luck? I hope to be blogging my progress, not daily to be sure because that's godawful dull for those of you who are having to sit through this, but the occasional proof-of-life shot as above may be turning up at intervals...

And speaking of maths, 2014's Media Consumption worked out to 108 books and 55 films. Onward to year ten:

Media Consumption List, 2015 )
At something of loose ends after having checked two big items off the long-term Bucket List in the last year ("fiction publication acceptance" and "lived to see 23 November 2013"); still casting about for some other Life Goals, but for now I think I'll carry on with the Media Consumption lists as one way to impose some structure upon my life, since it has managed to come in surprisingly handy as a reference at times over these years I've been doing it however tedious it may occasionally get to remember to record items. 2013 clocked in at 96 books and 75 films, which is a high for the latter and a reasonable go for the former -- but onward:

Media Consumption List, 2014 )
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Furnace Guy finally came and all now appears to be well, knock wood. Weasel decided that the proceedings were Relevant To Her Interests and actually slunk out of hiding to watch a couple of times. :)

2012's Media Consumption comes out to 108 books and 45 films, on to 2013:

Media Consumption List, 2013 )
Aaand now the holiday card to my grandmother has come back 'undeliverable'. I think I'll just save some time and assume she's also died-and-no-one-told-me, given we've been expecting that to happen for years now. [ETA: Ah, yes, Mum's found a scribbled 'deceased' under the 'undeliverable' sticker. As I say, no more than I'd have expected really.] Did anyone think to keep the receipt for this year so we can return it? It's obviously defective...


To bury my resentments in administrative trivia, the Media Log shows that a total of 71 books and 68 films were Consumed in 2011, which is about average on the reading and a lot of time spent in front of the telly. I'm kind of thinking it must have rained a lot in October in particular. To 2012:

Assuming any of us live to see the final results, at this rate. )
Media Consumption Tracking time again; results for 2010 show an upswing on the books tally with 49 read in total, much of which is directly down to the CPL having finally got it together about putting their holds system on-line, and holding roughly steady on films with 36. Further fun with statistics reveals that in the five years I've been tracking my Media Consuption here, I have read a total of 439 books and seen 188 films... I suppose someone is going to start telling me to get a real life now, aren't they. But on to 2011:

the origins of Scary Trivia Girl revealed )
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robling_t: (secret cow level)
( Jan. 17th, 2010 03:24 pm)
And regarding Suffering For My Art, I can now attest that Teen Wolf Too really IS That Bad, to the point where I feel like I should be apologising to a fictional character for suggesting he'd forced himself to watch it. (At least he'd probably have sort of appreciated The Beast Must Die, man.) Yargh. Media Consumption overall has been drastically down year over year, with 2009 coming in at only 20 books and 38 films. Yes, this is A Portrait Of The Artist As Someone Without A Library Card. But getting on with 2010:


Media Consumption List, 2010 )
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An attempt to watch A Night To Remember that ended prematurely in the realization that I didn't actually care enough about any of these people even to watch them die reminds me that a new year means a new reckoning with annual Media Consumption figures. 2008 represented a steep dropoff from previous tallys, with only 51 books and 14 films added to the life-list (and yes, I am aware that there are people out there for whom 50 books read in a year represents a goal to aspire to, not falling down on the job, but when did I ever claim to be normal); now, if only the part of this that was because of Writing More had been in the pursuit of something that might actually be of use to me careerwise down the road, and not sheer self-indulgence, I'd have, well, probably another manuscript to keep the first one company in the trunk, but at least it'd be more socially acceptable to whine about it, shall we say. So, onward to 2009's List:


Media Consumption List, 2009 )
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So, where was I with the blogging stuff... Still feeling very burned-out on this whole "trying to make sense to normal humans" thing after the insanity that was the Things Learned project, but seeing as it's nearly February I suppose I had better get back on the horse before y'all start thinking I'm dead, assuming anyone's still reading by this point anyway. First up, Media Consumption stats for 2007 worked out to 141 books read and 54 new-to-me movies viewed, which represents a steep year-over-year drop-off in reading towards the end of the year as the winter doldrums set in and a slight rise in sitting-in-front-of-the-telly, unless one considers that since I've only been counting material that received a theatrical release in these statistics it might actually be a little more constant that these figures really reflect. On to the Media Consumption List for 2008, which is already starting out in the crapper it seems --

Media Consumption List, 2008 )


Otherwise, obviously feeling singularly unmotivated in general about my life. Is it spring yet...?
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The mysterious bag of candy has resurfaced again. New new year's resolution has been filed to finally eat the damn pixy-stix and throw the rest of it out, but this will take some time to complete, as one doesn't really want to eat that many pixy-stix that quickly.

Speaking of resolutions, Mum has successfully completed the only one of hers that I know of, which was to return the Oberweis bottle that's been in the trunk for about 6 months. Go Mum. (I presume "eat less and exercise" is also on her list somewhere, but that's sort of a universal given.)

As to the rest of my resolutions:




And now, the Media Consumption List for 2007, but first, the final tally for December 2006 was 17 books and 9 films, bringing the total Media Consumption for the year 2006 to a grand total of 178 books and 46 films. Fun with statistics: Highest book total achieved was 18, which happened four times, and lowest was 8 (I still don't know what happened there), which means that I read an average of {pokes at calculator} 15 books each month, or just about a book every two days, which seems about right; highest film total was 9 (twice), lowest 1 (also twice), meaning that on average I settle down to watch the whole of four movies-I-haven't-seen-before each month (if I had a nickel for every time I've seen most of Back to the Future in the last year I'd have bought the dvd by now), and that I'm probably not getting as much use out of the NetFlix as I might. Good to know, I suppose.

Media Consumption List, 2007 )
[livejournal.com profile] rollick has an interesting idea, here; I'll give it a go, although I fully expect to either A) lose track and/or forget I'm doing this within a couple of weeks, or B) quickly exceed LJ's text-limit, given the rate at which I go through library books...

Media consumed in 2006 )
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Okay, fess up, can anybody out there look at this and not want to start with, "I am Jack's aran cardigan"...?


Tuesday was once again knitting-guild night at Sulzer, and this time I decided to head out early enough to investigate that library's knitting section, since the guild makes regular contributions to it. As usual for the CPL, the reality left something to be desired; but I did find one book that appeared to be worth further study, and after some thought I took that volume and a book on Chicago's bungalows down to the circulation desk to check them out.

Now, I use my CPL card maybe once every two or three years, because that's about how long it takes the memory of the Horror That Is Browsing The CPL to fade; for my regular book-devouring purposes, I spring for an annually renewed paid-nonresident privilege at the Evanston library, not least because it's actually more convenient to where I live. When I first signed up for this program, it was the practice of Evanston's system to merely affix its barcode to the back of one's resident card from another local system, such as the CPL, and that became one's Evanston fee-card.

Apparently they never mentioned this to the CPL system.

The guy at the desk, whom I would guess as high-functioning Down's syndrome and very literal-minded, saw the Evanston barcode on the back of my CPL card and started taking exception. As in, we don't allow CPL cards to be defaced this way, we've never allowed CPL cards to be defaced this way, you'll have to get Evanston to issue you a proper Evanston card, and by the way I am not giving you this one back.

{Enraged spluttering from library patron.}

He starts trying to peel the Evanston sticker off the back of my CPL card. Can't get it off. Gets really insistent that the physical card is property of the CPL and must be surrendered upon demand.

{Further enraged spluttering. Point is raised that said sticker costs actual money and I am damn well going to have it back if it's over his dead body.}

And he gets out scissors --

You know those scenes in movies about the French Foreign Legion where some poor sod has his epaulettes ripped off before being drummed out of the service? Well, that's what it feels like to watch your library card having the heart cut out of it. Considering that I damn near qualify for frequent-flyer miles on the thing, at least at the Place of the Unauthorized Sticker, it's a miracle I didn't grab the scissors and turn them on him in my frenzy of grief and financial angst. I must have looked like I was about to, though, because then he finally called over his supervisor to arbitrate. According to her, yes, they officially Disapprove of the way Evanston piggybacked its way onto my CPL card, but the more accepted procedure would have been to refuse to checkout the current items and give me back the card to take back to Evanston to correct the situation before surrendering the CPL card. But done is done, after all...

In the end, I went away with a new CPL card and an inch-by-half-inch scrap of plastic with the offending Evanston barcode still affixed to it, since after all that was by their own logic Evanston's property to take back and mutilate at their whim and they couldn't reasonably seize that part with the rest of the card. Oh, and another reason to despise the Chicago Public Library, as if I needed another reason. God knows how I'm going to explain this to Evanston on Saturday -- I think they know me well enough that it shouldn't be a big problem, especially considering that the entire fiasco is their own damn fault in the first place, but as a worrier by nature I'm inevitably spinning myself dire scenarios... {twitches at thought of having library service interrupted}

At least the knitting meeting went well. (I might have caused an even bigger Scene if it weren't for the fact that I was in Sulzer in the first place for a different reason than their books.) In a show-offy mood, I'd packed up the latest gloves I'm finishing up as my take-along-to-work-on-and-flaunt project for the month, and the resultant boggled compliments went quite a ways toward assuaging my hurt and outrage at the violent death of my library card. Still, I walked all the way home in a fog of lingering annoyance and worry, and was very surprised to be home already when I got in, because it didn't seem like it had taken me long enough. (Also I'm not as stiff today as I was the first time I walked home all the way from Sulzer, so perhaps I'm merely getting into shape?) Very tempted to simply move to Evanston and have done with all the idiotic shenanigans...


Oh, yeah, and a couple of blocks from my house an odd old man with a rottweiler said "You're stupendous" as I walked by, leaving my paranoid little brain to wonder if he took me for a lady of the evening, or was actually talking to the dog. Time to move out of this freakshow neighborhood, man...
This post makes me feel a little better about having only spent one week throwing myself into displacement activities to fool my hindbrain into forgetting that I was actually supposed to be scrubbing out the bathtub -- granted, knitting is a constructive activity, but neither that nor pulling everything down from the tops of the kitchen cabinets to sort out what can be disposed of since we obviously haven't needed it in the last seven years gets me any closer to being able to take a shower without fear of my feet rotting off. I did, at least, manage on Wednesday to take the baby-step of reorganizing the bathroom in such a way that I can now access the bathtub itself, which endeavor involved throwing out the cat-basket that the P-trap had barfed upwards into so I could have a place to set the basket of befouled laundry besides in the tub.

Also discovered that the handymen had left a deposit of slime behind the radiator which is easily deep enough to sprout seeds in, were there any light back there. I had been wondering why the bathroom still smelled like a greenhouse... Must get on stick to move out before winter comes, or else we shall have to clean that dirt out of there before the radiators come back on.

However, the portion of said Displacement Activities that involved knitting was quite fruitful in itself, as I am finally entering the home stretch of a shawl that I had been procrastinating on. Curiously, although the pattern on the skein says to make 5 wedges, I am now on a seventh and only now reaching a stage of visibly coming to the end of the giant ball of yarn. Will probably stop after completing said seventh wedge, as shawl is already approaching a 3/4 circle, and come up with some sort of frilly edging to run along the open edge if there's still quite a bit of yarn left, as there does look like being. Will probably be pestering people to borrow a digital camera when this project is finished.

Also, finished reading Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, having lucked out at the library and snagged a momentarily unreserved copy. I had previously gotten to page 400 before they'd wanted it back the first time I'd risen to the top to the reserve list, and it was a bit disorienting to try to pick up the story there after a couple of months, but once I'd gotten back into it I enjoyed it immensely. One does hope that Clarke's next literary effort doesn't take a similar decade to write, the world already has Thomas Pynchon for that...


Our library also has a decent selection of DVDs, maybe a bit weighted towards "classics" but still keeping up enough with current releases that we're slowly catching up on all the movies we've missed getting to in the last ten years, like Finding Nemo (yay), Memento (meh), Girl with a Pearl Earring (meh), and of course Pirates of the Caribbean (arrrr!). Last night we watched Seabiscuit, which left me wondering what everyone had been raving about -- there might have been a movie in there somewhere, but I don't think they tried hard enough to find it before releasing the film into the wild. Still in the queue to get through before Saturday are Whale Rider, Bend it like Beckham, and episodes 7-9 of I, Claudius, which I think Mum has given up trying to stay awake through after her long workdays so I'll probably watch that during the day sometime. (I know I've seen the series more recently than its original airing because I remember thinking "...D'you suppose that's really Patrick Stewart's original hair?", but I mustn't have been following it very closely because it's all fresh to me this time around.)

So, a question to my Readers: since the only movies I've managed to get out to see in theaters in the last ten years that weren't animated were LotR, Harry Potter, Gladiator, Hitchhiker's Guide, and the disastrous choices of Episode 1, The Time Machine, King Arthur, and Tim Burton's remake of Planet of the Apes (and no, I don't think I'm leaving any live-action movies out, either, we've been That Broke) -- what have I missed that was actually worth watching? When I run out of easy pickings at the library, I'll be raring to head over to Blockbuster with a list of recommendations...
It turns out to be not all that big a deal to get up to Old Orchard by public transit, provided it's a nice day out and one isn't afraid of a bit of a walk. I headed off for bargain day at the Brandeis sale Friday by way of the Yellow Line, which deposits one about a mile from the mall proper. In theory, there are buses to cover the rest of the distance, but I find that it's usually faster to head off on foot than to wait around for the "convenience" of being stuck in traffic, so I hiked the rest of the way from the Swift (and didn't see any buses the while, which rather makes my point). The sale was pretty skinned-out, to the point where people were remarking upon it, but I still managed to fill my rucksack, and had to throw a few selections back knowing that I'd be hating myself on the walk back to the Swift if I didn't. (Note to self for future: this is an excellent strategy for keeping the house from getting filled up with books...) The eventual haul:

  • (hard) He, She, and It, Marge Piercy
  • (pb) Frankenstein, Mark Shelley
  • (trade pb) Culture Shock! Norway
  • (pb) the Dove Looked In, Gael Baudino
  • (hard) White Teeth, Zadie Smith
  • (hard) the autobiography of Benvenuto Cellini
  • (hard) Bloodrights, N. Lee Wood
  • (hard) How to Set Up for a Mah-Jongg Game and other lost arts
  • (trade pb) the Story of English


So 9 titles of various interest to the Author for the staggering sum of $4.50, woohoo. (Particularly pleased to find He, She and It because the Evanston library's only extant copy of same lives at the North Branch, which would mean either spending .50 to have the main branch fetch it over for me or spending .50 of gas to go over and get it myself, something I had been dithering about for a couple of weeks because I am lazy as well as cheap.) Once again failed to come across Ulysses, Lord of the Rings, or Pullman's Dark Materials trilogy. (One would think that by now the used market would be saturated with copies of LotR because of the films, but I guess by bargain day they're long gone.)

Walked back to the Swift along Skokie to investigate the NeoPets plushies supply status at the McDonald's at the corner of Dempster and Skokie, but alas, the three choices on offer were moehogs, grundos, and ixis, so I got a chocolate shake instead. (Oddly enough, the McDonald's within the Old Orchard food court is still giving out the weird big-nosed dogs from the previous promotion.) Then, having undone all my virtuous walking with said shake, I decided to walk home from the Howard station instead of taking the Red Line, making for a total of about three miles for the day.

Got home at 5:30 to find a message on the phone from [livejournal.com profile] karenb2 offering me a ride to the sale. Ah, irony. :)

Somewhere shortly after arriving home, I dozed off, and except for a trip out Sunday afternoon for a few errands I was pretty well out of things between then and Monday afternoon. Not sure why, it wasn't that much exertion. Perhaps going into Friday's adventure somewhat sleep-deprived had something to do with it. If anyone was expecting anything of me over the weekend, I do apologize, but I wouldn't have been awake enough to be present anyway. It's the vampire thing, you see, it being the longest day of the year and all...

And speaking of which, the summer solstice is the day that Snip came into our household, one year ago. I would have marked the occasion by going out and dancing naked around something, but it rained.


Oh, and I turned my right ankle on the walk, but it's my left ankle that's been hurting all weekend. Huh?
the Prequel's Progress: 21446. Sat down yesterday to work on the orgy scene and what came out instead was part of the narrator's death, but hey, it's wordcount. (Both scenes happen to involve a scuffle with the same antagonist, and I guess the second fight just elbowed the first out of the mental queue...) Would have done more today, but I didn't wake up until 6 pm because of the heat; will see about getting new headphones so I can shift over to nocturnal work-schedules for the summer months.

Today's mail call brought the "sorry, we're full up" form letter from Agent #2 -- about what I was expecting, in truth. On to Agent #3.

Updating the saga of my library consumption rate:

Library list, week two )

So basically I've been avoiding the 24/7 Reaganfest on the telly by working and reading, which I suppose is marginally better than some of the alternatives (which tend to end with "...got picked up by the Justice Department for having Un-American Thoughts and was never heard from again"). Man, I can't wait for this week to be over... (Although I actually rather liked the way Nightline handled the issue last night; respectful, but not overblown and sugarcoated like what the cable newsbots have been falling over themselves with all weekend. I get it, he's dead and you're sad, but dear god, why do we need hours and hours of a live feed of the coffin? Are you expecting him to rise on the third day or something?)
I didn't end up making it to WisCon, so one would think that at least the apartment would be looking a trifle less like it was being rented by a gang of brain-eating zombies... but no.

Saturday went well enough, consumed in an ordinary weekend's allotment of Out Of The House Errands such as the usual library run and groceries, but somehow Sunday never really made it off the runway so far as anything in the cleaning-related line went. In the end, my chronically bizarre sleep-patterns decided to put me down for a nap between 7 and 10 PM, meaning I was wide awake and raring to go right about when I needed to be settling down so I could be rested enough to slope over to [livejournal.com profile] welcomerain's theoretical barbecue on Monday. Needless to say, at the approximate start-time for this latter event I rolled over in bed, observed that it was raining anyway which is generally rather incompatible with barbecues, and went back to sleep until about four in the afternoon. I'd say I need a Real Job to straighten out my schedule, but it's never worked before so why get into it again now...

Mum didn't get much of anything done either, which somewhat puts paid to her theory that she doesn't get anything done on the weekends because I'm always needing to be driven about the landscape on errands.

So it's the first of June already, and I'm trying to keep a firm grip on the notion that a large part of why I'm vaguely frustrated and wanting to bite random people is simply hormonal, despite the other extraneous factors involved like the weather and the slowness of the mails. (Today's entry on the Agenda of Dread: one of Saturday's items involved paying the rent, which in itself went well enough, but it came out in the course of the conversation that operations to evict certain unwanted six-legged tenants from the building are still ongoing, with another round of chemical warfare scheduled for later on today. Still undecided on whether to try and sleep through the assault on the common areas, or remove to healthier climes, mostly for want of an idea for what said healthier climes should constitute and for what portion of the day... Upheaval not good for writing schedule, dammit. Plus leaving the house would involve finding the energy to shower.)

Also not looking forward to the week's television scheduling, which will be dragging out the usual intolerable Memorial Day death-march of war movies until the D-Day anniversary a full week later. The only things at all worth watching all weekend were two of the Indiana Jones movies and I suspect that they only put those on because they have Nazis in. I've had it up to here with the "real" war we're in already, I don't need John Wayne swaggering across my television for a solid week on top of it.

And somewhat on the subject of current events and WWII, am I alone in finding the new memorial creepily reminiscent of something out of Speer's grand plan for Berlin...? Seems inappropriate, under the circumstances.



Now we present a new feature on this blog: I've been wondering, as I fall over the library bag on my way into and out of the bathroom, just how many books I do go through in the course of an average month; so, for the month of June, I'll be keeping a log of library books in and out, with the odd note here and there on their fate while in the house. So here's where we start --

Library List, week one )

(As I've said before, the Attorney General can bite me.) This time next week I shall bring the story up to date with news of what got read, what got sent back unfinished (and why), and what followed me home in the next week's batch...
robling_t: (Default)
( Mar. 26th, 2004 06:12 pm)
Y'know, I was really expecting to have instituted some sort of Reign of Terror by this point in my life... I mean, Alexander the Great had conquered the known world and died already by this age. Must work on fine-tuning that business plan for World Conquest some more...


The Prequel's Progress: the count's up to 20,398, which sounds like the explanation for the week's LJ hiatus until I elaborate that that was all on Wednesday. It was just an unremarkable week.

The prequel has been invaded by a horde of the narrator's fellow-apprentices; their presence is entirely logical but soooo not in my original conception of this that it's causing some difficulties. For now I'm treating them as an undifferentiated mob rather like a Greek chorus, hopefully the better to contrast with the fact that the only one of them who does have a separate identity turns out to be the villain of the piece. Since the underlying theme of the book is the narrator's struggle between the paths represented by the villain's monomaniacal detatchment from reality and the distractions of his own intense-but-frustrating connection to the other individuated apprentice in the piece, this may work out, or I may have to chase the rest of the apprentices off, we'll see. At the moment, the productive session of Wednesday foundered upon the rocks of introducing apprentice #3 (who was the narrator of the completed manuscript) to the chorus at breakfast, so I've set that scene aside to work on other sections while I Contemplate. Backlog of ideas slowly beginning to drop down into the pipeline to get worked upon properly...


As to my unremarkable week, most of it can be summed up by saying that yet another apartment in the building is being ripped up by a crew of workmen who like to get an early start on the day, as in "the shrieking of tortured lathe and splintering wood at 7 AM every day this week" early, so I've been rather cranky because it's not making for a pleasant work environment. (That thousand words on Wednesday came along between 11 PM and the time their noise started back up again on Thursday.) It's finally almost nice enough to open the windows and it's way too noisy...

Sunday and Monday, however, get glossed over with "chewable Imodium is pretty damn nasty but at least I got a lot of reading done". Choosing to dwell upon the latter aspect of that statement, I'll continue with my promise/threat to say more about my own reading habits:

The Killing of Worlds, Scott Westerfeld. Having bolted down The Risen Empire the previous Thursday, I was quite pleased to find part two already waiting at my library on the Saturday. This is military/space-opera SF, not my primary genre-of-interest but Westerfeld's got a knack for intriguingly quotidian touches, such as the deceleration gel being strawberry-flavored. The nanobattle at the beginning of the first book is particularly cleverly handled. The premise rather comes off the rails towards the end, but high marks for effort. Oh, and it's got undead cats in it...

Alta, Mercedes Lackey. Whom I read more out of habit these days, since she's gone from a "I wanna be able to do that" author to a "hey, I can do better than that" author as my own tastes develop. Although I still aspire to the "...and she makes an actual living doing it too" part of it. :) Alta is part two of what's basically her retelling of Jane Yolen's retelling of McCaffrey's "oppressed kid raises dragon in secret" schtick; there's not much new to be done with the concept by now, but it's a good example of how to do a workmanlike job of storytelling, and the setting's at least cliched-faux-Egyptian instead of cliched-faux-medieval-Europe, which is a change of pace from the usual fantasy-by-the-pound standard. It would be good for a reverse-engineering sort of "what's she doing here, how is she doing it, how would you handle this differently" analysis exercise for those whose learning style that is, writing-wise.

Also went through a stack of nonfiction, which generally involves looking for specific info so it's more churn than actual in-depth reading as such, but the occasional item does stand out. For example, this week's "things found while looking for other things" books included Same-Sex Unions in Pre-Modern Europe, which along with fodder for the current arguments has some helpful insight on how the institution of heterosexual marriage has evolved over the centuries that happened to address some concerns that I'd been having regarding my own work. So you never do know what you're going to come across where...


Oh, and the movie I was thinking of at Tuesday's MeetUp was The Dream Team -- what was the question again...?
One last thing before initiating sleep-cycle (having given up on whatever I originally sat down here to do lo these many hours ago): I've been considering the issue that I don't talk about books as often as a would-be writer probably ought, so I'm going to try to start remembering to do this as a semi-regular feature here.

I bring this up now because the spark just leapt across the overworked synapses that it's [livejournal.com profile] papersky who wrote the odd little book that I've been meaning to mention here since I read it a couple of weeks ago. (The drawback of the life lived online is that the part of identities that I retain is generally somebody's username, not their real name or even, occasionally, their face.) My attention span is pretty fucked-up at the moment (well, more than usual anyway) what with primary season turning out to be more entertaining than a lot of what's published as fiction anymore, but Tooth and Claw got read to the end, which is more than I can say of about 90% of what's even making it past the initial "sounds interesting enough to carry home from the library?" test. (Am I being too harsh to give up on books after 100-150 pages? Idunno, maybe I have no patience but I find myself skimming or bailing on an awful lot of genrefic anymore...)

In case Tooth and Claw hasn't made it onto the Dear Reader's IN pile yet, think: Trollope played by dragons. Weird, weird shit, kids. The weirdest part is how well this works. (Better than Trollope, I daresay; it's even palatable to this Reader who's not very good at concentrating on fiction that involves the sexual mores of the 1950's, much less the 1850's.) I'll never look at a Victorian novel about "dying of consumption" quite the same way again...

I think I had a point to make, but I've forgotten what it was. Oh, well. Will try in future to render more timely mentions of noteworthy reading I've done... the sad part will be if I can't find enough books worth going to the trouble of saying a few words about them to get into a regular habit of it like I'd like to. (My response to bad books is simply to put them down, after all, and to dwell on the particulars is in all but the most egregrious cases more a waste of my time and yours anyway. I'm not big on rants except when I feel I have something constructive to say...)
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