Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Fun Book Trailer Site

Fun Book Trailers (including the now famous Wool)

Okay, short post just for info. Info above. Er... going now. Oh, here´s one I thought was nice and for a pretty cool and well put together story.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Progress Report

For now I will keep this brief, and it will sound like I am talking about the dreaded and fictitious writers block.

Fictitious? Really?

Yes, pretty much. What happens is that the story, regardless of length, doesn´t have the right ingredients and/or they are not cooked yet. And this is roughly what has been happening to me over the last year, as variously reported. Write writer write write, oh no, highlight delete back to where it was okay. Why the oh no? Because you get bogged down, stuck, no one says or does anything naturally and I cast around for something to happen... but if the ingredients are right and the story is cooked then there is never any doubt about what happens next. The story becomes like skiing a slalom... you know where all the flags are even if you can´t see them all and it is just a matter of skiing like crazy until the story is finished.

Well, I´m now skiing like crazy. All The King´s Bastards is rocking along and I am loving it. I hope you do too. Soon.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Fluride Inhibits Brain Development?

This is not my normal kind of post, but sometimes I come across something so interesting that I just want to show it around a bit. So there is this.../

“In this study we found a significant dose-response relation between fluoride level in serum and children’s IQ…This is the 24th study that has found this association”.

One attorney, Paul Beeber, NYSCOF President, weighs in on the research by saying:

“It’s senseless to keep subjecting our children to this ongoing fluoridation experiment to satisfy the political agenda of special-interest groups. Even if fluoridation reduced cavities, is tooth health more important than brain health? It’s time to put politics aside and stop artificial fluoridation everywhere”.

/... from here:

Actually, I'll happily recommend you keep an eye on Jerry Pournelle's Chaos manor website because there are often interesting things discussed by very smart and capable and accomplished people. Reasoned debate is rare enough that drawing attenton to where it happens has to be a good thing.

And yes, that's the same Jerry Pournelle who writes with Larry Niven and Steven Barnes fairly often. Both those writers - just in case you don't know - are well worth reading.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Blue for everyone, and red too

Okay. Here is an unnecessary insight into how my mind works. If you lose interest, and you may, then feel free to go do something else. I'll tack some news on the end for those who care.

I was on a train in Scotland with my lady of that moment, and still great friend, Jane. One of her pet theories was the old saw about there being no way to know for sure that when I say red I mean the same thing you do; you could be seeing blue, this goes, and thinking red. For me all the blue things in the world look blue and for you red, and there would be n way for to be sure about this. Right off the bat I think this idea is nonsense and my subconscious is trying to tell me why, but I'm not quite getting it as I struggle to express my objection to the idea. Then Jane says I'm not understanding her and that's always been an annoyance for me because I understand just fine, thanks, I just happen to think it's bullshit.

Anyway. I never get to make the connection or hear what my subconscious' objection was. But for me it goes in the unfinished business pile. Because for me, time just doesn't work the same way it seems to for other people. Every now and again my memory will throw this whole thing back at my consciousness, irritated that it isn't resolved. Maybe once a year, once every eighteen months, I'll be right back there on that damn train in Scotland being annoyed about this silly ass so called conundrum, trying to make that connection again and express my problem with the idea. For years, about a decade in this case (I could figure it our exactly but doubt anyone needs to know) until today, when I was randomly thinking it through and the idea leapt out of my subconscious, where it had been formed originally and lurked impatiently all this time. It's colour blindness, of course. If people didn't see colors the same way then the people who set up the color blindness tests would be  setting it up so that only people who saw colors as they did would not be color blind. Everyone would be looking at the damn tests and calling out different numbers. Color blindness tests just flat out wouldn't work unless you and I both saw blue when looking at blue and saying blue.

Of course that isn't absolute proof. I know. But it is a pretty fair indication. Red is red and blue is blue for me, and Jane and you and you.

Anyway. Glad I could finally put this one to bed. Honestly, I'm like a dog with a bone.

News. Some people find the Rapture Ready, the short free Dancing with Darwin story confusing. I have today withdrawn it, though I will leave it in the collected Dancing with Darwin stories as a bonus. Maybe they work better all together. Leaving RR live and free tointroduce readers to the other stories isn't working... so, if it isn't working stop doing it. Do something else. If it weren't for the high star reviews they have also received, I might believe they are just not as good as I think they are. Well, maybe they will catch on later... who knows?

All The King's Bastards is finally clear in my mind. It's a nice semi-resolution to that section to the series and all I need now is a handful of clear weeks to get that work finished. I've learned not to promise when I'll deliver, but it certainly can be quite soon – it just depends on when I get the clear time together. I think that's going to mean moving again as I'm not getting enough quiet time here – some people just dont get that I'm working even when just sitting around staring into space (like a Swan... all serene on the surface, paddling like crazy underneath) and they talk to me... so I have to respond... and drop all the things I'm juggling in my head and have to pick them up later and start all over again. It's an irritant. I guess living alone for this stuff is the only answer. Another price of freedom, maybe.

In the meantime I'm working on things that don't need such an intense run of focused attention. Sumto is very demanding when I write him; other stories less so. I had a nice SF story in mind for four years or so, and I had it so I could tell it verbally, so I did and got a good reaction. “Write it, write it just like that.” But it actually still didn't quite feel right. Now I know why and have the right extra elements so I'll write that fast and next. I think getting this one right may have taught me a deep lesson about story and may improve everything I write after this.

I'm also progressing another fantasy novel, and an Urban Fantasy piece of indeterminate length, and a fantasy comedy but I'm only pushing those forward gently and won;t let them get in the way of the most important work. All The King's Bastards is the story people ask about; more Sumto and Jocasta and co. is what readers want from me, so I guess I'd best continue to focus the bulk of my attention there. It will be soon. Really.

This morning I was standing on the balcony looking over the Mediterranean and frowning at the big cloud bank overhead. I looked left and right and up to match the clouds to bits of wall and try and figure out which way the cloud was moving. There was a glimmer of a line of sun out to sea and that didn´t move either. I kept losing my marks. After a while I figured that though the cloud was moving south it was evaporating as fast as it moved. It was like watching a glacier in fast forward only upside down. Pretty cool. I did that for a while. Just wanted to tell someone that, but don´t have anyone here right now who would appreciate it. So you get to hear it instead.