A JayWake report. With more photos from the man himself.
Kurt Vonnegut's shapes of stories speech and infographic.
Why the world of publishing needs gatekeepers. That's Diana Peterfruend talking about rampant plagiarism in the "indie publishing" world, or at least the part Amazon controls. And Amazon has no interest in being the cop on the beat. Why? Think they make a little money on each sale? BTW, once someone realizes that makes them an accessory to selling stolen goods, watch out. Don't think that could be a problem, ask your local pawn shop owner.
"Let me tell you about Merrie Haskell, the best fantasy writer for middle grade audiences I’ve come across in years." I haven't read Mer's latest (hell, I haven't read much of anything other than textbooks for the past year), but I will.
One of the fairy tales this review mentions that Mer wraps up in her writing is Bluebeard. And that got me to thinking, I wonder how many of these people talking about "the fake geek-girl" (or those who threaten women with rape because they have their own ideas, dreams, and will - see link below or any of the conversations about women gamers, writers, or women who have blogs) have ever read that one, or Mr. Fox (or any of the variants of the story) and how they play into the same story and what their role is? Probably not many.
http://www.sfwa.org/2013/07/the-joy-of-failure-improv-and-writing/"But the route to this tension is to keep saying 'yes' to the 'offers' (the story stuff about characters and plot and location and motivation people introduce). You keep saying yes until you find something that someone values. Once an offer is noticed, you start building upon it." How saying, "Yes, and/but…" (which is the core of improv) can help you write fiction. If you've ever bounced ideas off of someone who can feed back into the loop, you've done this (full disclose, that's how the premise to the WIP came into being, thanks Dan).
Fred Clark on the rise of the corporate singularity. And he outlines some of the complications of treating corporations as people. It's a convenient fiction, corporations as individuals, but it already breaks down in law enforcement. You can't jail a corporation (and although in some case I would like to see them try, the resulting social chaos wouldn't be preferable, however I do think that officers of the company should be held liable by their actions while immune fiscally - that is their money and property is their own, but their time is already given to the company, if they commit crimes or allow them to be committed as an officer of the company, they should face incarceration for those actions). But now the question becomes, will corporations in the future send back terminators in the for of Summer Glau?
"Microsoft also uses some dubious rounding code that transforms the original voting data into misleading percentages. Indeed, developer tools reveal that the top five leaders in the Microsoft STEM education contest miraculously account for 130% of the vote. Let's hope the quality control is better for those Microsoft Surface voting machines!" Wait, Microsoft is hawking Surface tablets for voting? Saints preserve us. (Pointed to by Dan)
The sausage being made. While most conferences send out memos to their members on how to message, it seems as if the GOP has taken this to new levels. Here is the actual full memo the GOP conference sent to it's members with detailed plans, talking points, almost everything except telling their members to shower every day. Frankly if I were to receive this memo, I would write back to the conference leaders telling them not to insult my intelligence. But then, given what I've seen of my new local representative, I think this level of instruction is necessary for the people who have no idea how to act and behave. And seeing how some member have already gone off reservation, it's not surprising this memo had been written. (Grokked from Jay Lake)
Good thing we don't have any strict regulations on deer repellent and "fart gas". Because that would totally mess up the free market and stop kids at Bible camp from using chemical weapons on each other. In other news, "WTF is wrong with people?" (Grokked from Jay Lake)
Ah, those ever good social conservatives and how they behave. In this case calling a 14-year old girl a "whore" because she opposed the Texas law restricting abortion rights. Not to mention the ever present threatening rape or believing she was just giving it away for free (in this case with her Dad being the pimp). Stay classy, conservatives. Also note convergence with stories about The Conjuring in this linkee-poo. Having been there when abortion clinics were shouting matches, this behavior really doesn't surprise me. It's not okay, either. Or as I used to say, "You pray to your God with that mouth?" And when you're there on the line, you see what these supposed "Christian Minded" social conservatives are really about, control. And they're not afraid to use violence to "keep" that control. (Not sure who I got this link from first, Morgan J Locke I think)
"The data released today shows that Florida spent $118,140 reimbursing the overwhelming number of Florida TANF applicants (for mandatory drug testing)… who tested negative for drugs… at a net cost to the State of over $45,000… There are also the administrative costs, staff costs, and, of course, the litigation costs." Ah social conservative policies, costing you more to implement the same thing. But I'm sure the testing lab got to hire one or two more people for the four months the program was running. (Grokked from Jay Lake)
"The Conjuring reportedly plays up this religious aspect, and the movie studio has hired Grace Hill Media — the current go-to PR firm for this kind of work — to sell the movie to churchgoers." Roll on up for the price is right. Fred Clark on using "true horror" to put people in church pews (and money in the charlatan's pockets). The "true story" horror movie is the modern-day version of the miracle worker (before that title was used in other ways). Nothing like a little Hell and Brimstone to get the donations flowing again. Reminds me to make a t-shirt for the "Witchfinder's Army" because it'll obviously sell big to both the ironic and to those who are irony impaired. Also, from Fred Clark's followup, "Here’s the real 'true story' behind The Conjuring: Any time people get worked up about a menace they believe in but can’t actually see – demons, Commies, jihadis, hordes of hoodie-wearing thugs — they’re likely to take it out on the weakest and most vulnerable people in society." And those people often are women, children, and the dispossessed.
"Thus, on average, private-sector workers in the United States receive ten days of paid vacation per year and six paid holidays. This total still leaves U.S. workers last in the rankings even when compared with the legal minimums highlighted above. And many employers in these other countries also offer more paid leave than legally required." But I'm sure those employers will… you know, sometimes my own sarcasm fails on myself. America, home of the supposed entrepreneurial spirit, leading the way in screwing over your workforce. (Grokked from Jay Lake)
"The prices Marylanders will pay (for health insurance through the exchange) are lower than the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) anticipated, but do cost more than the bare-bones plans that are available today. Residents will have a choice of nine insurance carriers and three out of four people purchasing coverage through the exchange will qualify for tax credits, further reducing the cost of coverage." Sort of a mixed bag, but then these plans aren't the "keep me out of jail" plans they talk about as "bare-bones" (think $20,000+ deductibles). This is the kind of information the conservative congresspeople are trying to make sure you don't get. (Grokked from Jay Lake)
"Without him, we would not know how the National Security Agency (NSA) had been able to access the emails, Facebook accounts and videos of citizens across the world; or how it had secretly acquired the phone records of millions of Americans; or how, through a secret court, it has been able to bend nine US internet companies to its demands for access to their users' data." From an article about how the personalization of the Snowden (and Manning) case is just a smokescreen to keep us from talking about the real issues. Now I do quibble with this, frankly anyone who is paying attention already knew those things were happening. And both Snowden and Manning face serious charges for their leaking (and will probably face jail time), I also quibble about if they're "whistleblowers" or "spies" (I don't think this rises to the later, but as to the former, again, didn't we all know this?). But, yeah, we should be talking about the consequences of what they've leaked, not whose shirts they wear. (Grokked from Jay Lake)
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And my respose @steve_buchheit @JackWelchMBA 1) start up Capital Division, give out loans and VISA cards, 2) gut everything else 3) retire before house of cards falls.