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And no one sings me lullabyes
And no one makes me close my eyes
So I throw the windows wide
And call to you across the sky.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Linkee-poo trudges off to school, again

Catherine Shaffer on the things she's learned about being an up-and-coming SF writer… for 15 years. Four and five ring with me right at the moment, although 11-14 are the most telling.

The consequences of writing without reading. Being a reader is step 1. I wonder how it is with other professions, like trying to be a musician without listening to music (no, seriously, you want me to drive you crazy, ask me to listen to some guitar piece and then give you a breakdown, unless you're another guitar player, you'd rather watch paint dry while huffing the off-gasses). And then they ask the question with blanks for the second part (and my answers in parentheses) "Wanting to write without wanting to read is like wanting to (orgasm) without wanting to (stimulate, or whatever you do)."

25 things you should know about Queries, Synopses and treatments. Because I know a few of you struggling with it right now (and I will be soon).

Jim C Hines does a good send up of the recent posts on how the world treats women differently than men. On thing Jim forgot to mention is that each time he's posted a blog that's critical or satiric, Jim gets comments about how clever he is, Jane gets email about how she must be having her period (only not stated that nicely).

A year of living biblically as a woman. I wonder if she's also keeping kosher? (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Here's a term you'll be tossing about in a few years, chatbot. (Pointed to by John)

I'm only pointing this out because you may know someone you need to pass this along to. In my case it's approximately 60% of my coworkers. Some finer points of email etiquette. Not said, but important, email is not instant. Also, is the subject of the email thread has changed, change the email header as well to reflect the new subject.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb and Mark Spitznagel wonder why "It is hard to understand why the market mechanism does not eliminate (banks that only line their own bankers' pockets). A well-functioning market would produce outcomes that favor banks with the right exposures, the right compensation schemes, the right risk-sharing, and therefore the right corporate governance." The answer is simple, the free market mechanism doesn't work the way it does in the stories we tell ourselves. Free markets tend toward monopoly, accumulation of wealth at the top, and subjugation wages at the bottom. Not to mention actual shooting wars between competitors (think I'm being crazy? I'm not, go read the history of the 19 century America, back before we had all these crazy regulations and market controls). That's the free market. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

This chart from the Romney Campaign reminds me of the time a manager included four months of revenues in their quarterly presentation. A few of us wondered what they would do the next quarter (they were gone by then).

Remember the whole debate on healthcare reform? Remember the argument about "rationed care" and "those long waits in socialized medicine"? Remember my counter that we already have them, and not just for elective procedures? My Mom had to wait 5 months to see a back specialist (even though she was in pain after her back surgery). For my sarcoma, 3.5 months. Sleep study, 2 months. When I broke my leg, I was in the emergency room for 3 hours before getting a doctor that could take a look at it. By the time we got to the surgeon (who was just by luck walking through the ER after checking up on some patients in post-op) the choice was either "emergency surgery now (with a team that had been in the OR for 12 hours) or wait 3 days for the swelling to go down. We already have delays (unless you're rich, money can buy faster access as can better insurance coverage). (Grokked from Jay Lake)

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