No doorways, no windows, no walls
No shelter here on the ground
No standing and no safe place to fall
Just the promise of this distant sound
Bells are ringing all over the world

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Linkee-poo is what it is until it ain't anymore

Can you tell I'm on break between Spring and Summer semester?

Hey lookie, my friend Mer Haskell is up for a Mythopoetic Award. So psyched for my friend. Plus, you know, you ought to go read her book.

Some more information on writing the synopsis with a paragraph by paragraph suggestion. Mostly.

John Scalzi on Dan Brown or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Words.

Chuck Wendig with 25 things you should know about outlining. I'm slowly, slowly learning how to outline the way I need to. Although when I start a story, I'll pants it.

Some very vintage book jacket art. Ooo, bright colors.

Jay Lake on how he puts his Link Salad together. Hmmm, I wonder why the linkee-poo looks a lot like his Link Salad (you know, beyond the wholesale grab of links I tend to do)?

"Breast cancer alone kills some 458,000 people each year, according to the World Health Organization, mainly in low- and middle-income countries. It has got to be a priority to ensure that more women can access gene testing and lifesaving preventive treatment, whatever their means and background, wherever they live. The cost of testing for BRCA1 and BRCA2, at more than $3,000 in the United States, remains an obstacle for many women." Angelina Jolie on breast cancer, testing positive for BRCA1, and her bilateral prophylactic mastectomy (with reconstruction). :: Stands and claps for her bravery in coming forward :: More about BRCA1 and BRCA2, note caveats of how the studies were done. Also I'll state here that breast cancer is much easier to spot than ovarian cancer (which is why most ovarian cancers are not detected early). (Grokked from Terri Klecha)

The Skylab 4 mutiny. Some things of which I have a hazy remembrance of during my ill spent youth. Reminds me of the Big Bang Theory's episode where Howard's toilet goes to the ISS. "Uh, Houston, this is a courtesy call we are basically out the door." (Grokked from

"Pablo Pantoja, who previously served as the State Director of Florida Hispanic Outreach for the Republican National Committee, has defected to the Democratic Party." Strange what happens when you actually start looking at conservative ideology up close and personal like. I feel for you, Pablo Pantoja. I've been down that road, although in my position and at that time I wasn't subjected to the massive amount of hate that's coming your way (if not now, very soon now). (Grokked from Jay Lake)

On the importance of ritual (mostly in a non-religious way). Ritual is an effective tool, and we create them all the time. And they work (not so much on the summoning of magic, but allowing us to relax and perform tasks better with a higher degree of confidence). (Grokked from Matt Staggs)

"Photographer dresses daughter as five heroines to celebrate her fifth birthday." Fabulous, as well as excellently posing her daughter to match the photos. (Grokked from WannabeWriter06)

So, who's the highest paid employee in your state? Chances are it's a sports coach. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Jim Wright on the Benghazi hearings.

War is hell. You know, it's not like that Syrian rebel commander that cut the heart out of a loyalist soldier and then bit it doesn't have a very long historical precedence behind his actions. But in this day and age, yep, that's a war crime. Not helping your international case there, buddy (although I would guess he shored up his command presence with his troops). But (again) it's not like there is an abundance of international help pouring in that you could lose.

In this second term of President Obama, how's the Right-Wing Media Circus doing? Still batshit crazy it seems. Well, can't make money if they were rational actors (gold anyone? anyone?). (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Just in case you're still laboring under the dellusion that the 1% are just like you and I, now they're hiring handicapped people at $130 to skip long lines at Disney. Well, you know, good for the disabled, but pretty crappy exploitation. (Grokked from Matt Staggs)

More on the ridiculous claims of climate change deniers. A good bit on how they cherry pick their data samples to show the opposite of what is actually going on (as a for instance, it was exactly this kind of shenanigans that created the whole 70's "ZOMG, we heading into an ice age" falsity). (Grokked from Jay Lake)

"When the sequester started kicking children out of pre-K, Congress did nothing. When this stupid policy denied low-income seniors the benefits of Meals on Wheels, Congress barely noticed. When sequestration cuts put new burdens on cancer patients and cut housing aid to struggling families, most of Congress shrugged its shoulders… But when business travelers ran into flight delays on Monday, a unanimous Senate approved a fix without breaking a sweat on Thursday." To say nothing of the "opps, you mean meat packing businesses might have to go to 3 day weeks, how will I get my steak fix?" budget fix as well. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

"First… the groups were not targeted in a political vendetta — but rather were executing a makeshift enforcement test… for IRS employees tasked with separating political groups not allowed to claim tax-exempt status, from bona fide social welfare organizations. Employees are given almost zero official guidance on how to do that, so they went after Tea Party groups because those seemed like they might be political… The second is that while this is the first time this kind of thing has become a national scandal, it’s not the first time such activity has occurred." Also, I'll point out, the vast majority of people didn't hear about this under two weeks before the final report on the investigation (a year long, IIRC) is about to be released. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Tweet of my heart: @JamesSACorey: @MykeCole My first writing teacher told us, "Other writers aren't your competition. TV and naps is your competition."


Eric said...

I just gotta say: seems to me that staging a general strike against the people who provide you with food, water and air, not to mention your ride home, might not be the best-thought-out protest in history. Not saying I don't sympathize with the astronauts facing a completely unrealistic work schedule that was probably the result of really poor planning at Ground Control. I'm just saying that you know someone at Kennedy Space Center wanted to radio back, "Tellyawhat, why don't you guys take the next nine months off and we'll send someone up to flush out the mess. Leave a note letting us know how Commander Carr tastes if you don't suffocate before you turn to cannibalism--Bob over here has what you might call a morbid curiosity."

Steve Buchheit said...

Eric, I'm sure you remember that with Skylab, we didn't have the same procedures for replenishment like we do with the ISS. In fact, the only replenishment was when a crew arrived. At any time the crew could have boarded their re-entry vehicle and come back down. If anybody was there to retrieve them is another question.

Eric said...

Exactly. They had around six-to-seven man months of air and water, so if the crew was stranded, one crewmember could probably stretch things out if he quickly disposed of his companions.

Now they did have an evacuation module, so I guess they could've tried dumping the station and returning to Earth. But that would have been a splashdown landing depending on Mission Control for reentry guidance and the US Navy for recovery.

Makes you wonder what might have happened if they'd been up there while we had one of those accidental global thermonuclear wars we kept almost getting into during the Cold War era. Hey! A storybone if you ever had a hankering to write an alt-history Twilight Zone episode! Will the plucky crew resort to paranoia and homicide in an ultimately futile attempt to stretch out diminishing resources, or will they make the probably-suicidal attempt to plot their own reentry and hope they can not only miss the third of the planet that's hard and bumpy but also that prevailing currents will wash them up on some un-irradiated tropical paradise where there's plenty of air and maybe even something to eat?