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KRAD's Inaccurate Guide to Life
ramblings from a mad fedora'd writer
kradical
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kradical
G. Kendall of the Not Blog X blog, which reviews comics and related materials published in the 1990s, has done a nifty set of reviews of the stories in the X-Men Legends anthology from 2000, including one that covers both Brian K. Vaughan's Angel story in the anthology and my own Changeling story, "Diary of a False Man."

Money quote:
As ridiculous as the Xavier/Changeling swap premise is, DeCandido does evoke a hint of tragedy with the story. When Jean reflects that even after the Changeling died doing the right thing, someone else’s name will be on his tombstone, I could almost forget how absurd this concept actually is. DeCandido does try his best to work through some of the continuity issues and logic problems present in the original comics, but there’s only so much anyone could do. The best moments of the story are the ones that transform the Changeling from a plot device into a believable character; the rest is an attempt to justify a lame comic from the late Silver Age that I would rather forget.

Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: "Wind Up" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
I'm going to be at two conventions in 2015 that I've never attended before: Myths and Legends Con (a.k.a. MALcon) in Denver in mid-August and EnigmaCon in Daytona Beach, Florida in late October.

I mention this mainly because Examiner.com's Colleen Bement (billed as the "Denver Geek Culture Examiner") has written a piece on MALcon, one which very generously name-checks me as one of the special guests, and also because EnigmaCon has released their promotional poster:



(I'm in the lower right....)

Here's the money quote from Bement's Examiner.com article:
The schedule is still in the works, but if it is anything like the past few years, there will be too much goodness to squeeze in one weekend. Special Guest Keith R.A. DeCandido will be joining Myths and Legends Con this year. Among many other things, Keith wrote the ‘Serenity’ novelization, several ‘Supernatural’ novels, and multiple ‘Doctor Who’ short stories.

(It's rare for me not to be identified by my Star Trek work. Not complaining, just mentioning it as a curiosity....)

Very much looking forward to both shows!

Current Mood: pleased pleased
Current Music: "Weathercock" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
At the funeral for Rev. Clementa Pinckney, one of the victims of the Charleston shooting, President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy, and ended it with an impromptu, rousing rendition of "Amazing Grace." I can't think of a better way to end this roller-coaster of a week.

Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful
Current Music: still the Yankees-Astros game

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kradical
Contact with Earth! Ford's out, and Caldwell, Ronon, Lorne, and the Daedalus are in! McKay blows up 5/6 of a star system! Michael! And other stuff as the Stargate Rewatch does Atlantis season two.

An excerpt:
Best episode: “Trinity.” My favorite episode of Atlantis in general, one of the best stories in the entire franchise, and a fantastic story on every level. The entire episode is about the theme of mistakes and their consequences, starting simply with Ronon messing up Teyla’s negotiation, and continuing to Kell paying for his mistake in sacrificing the Satedan people for his own survival with his life, and Ronon damaging his friendship with Teyla, all the way to the huge mistake of the Ancients not being able to make the power source work and McKay’s even huger mistake in not only thinking he could fix what they screwed up, but refusing to listen to Zelenka’s (wholly accurate) warning and blowing up most of a solar system as a result. So many great moments: Caldwell’s refreshingly unapologetic assurance that he is indeed eager to use this energy source for a variety of reasons (including as a weapon, but not limited to that), McKay’s citing of Harry K. Daghlian Jr. of the Manhattan Project as a reason to keep working after Collins’s death, Zelenka’s warning to McKay (a speech completely filled with real physics rather than technobabble), McKay’s snotty response, and Sheppard’s impassioned plea to McKay, citing pilots who refused to eject from a damaged plane until it was too late.

Current Mood: geeky geeky
Current Music: the Yankees-Astros game on YES

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kradical
The Supreme Court is 2 for 2 this week. In the ruling on the Affordable Care Act, they kept the tax credits -- which is the main reason why that first word in the act's name applies -- and then today they ruled 5-4 in favor of making all marriages legal regardless of the sexes of the two people involved.

Part of me is disgusted that a Supreme Court decision was needed for what should be fucking self-evident (from the Fourteenth Amendment, if nothing else, which was the cornerstone of the majority opinion), and another part of me is disgusted that it was such a close vote.

But ultimately, that doesn't matter, because the decision is made, as it really kinda had to be. The toothpaste was out of the tube the moment the first state allowed same-sex couples to marry.

And, to be blunt, all the arguments against this boil down to bigotry. The religious argument is total horseshit, and remains horseshit unless the person making the argument also thinks laws should be passed to make stoning the punishment for adultery, to forbid the mixing of wools and linens, to outlaw tattoos, and to force men to cover their heads at all times. As I've said many times, you don't get to cherry-pick the parts of the Book of Leviticus that suit your preexisting prejudices and call yourself righteous, you just get to be called a bigot.

In any case, "It's God's will" is not only horseshit, it's also not any kind of basis for rule of law in a democratic republic. The other argument is that it will harm opposite-sex marriage, which is also horseshit, because if the true concern was the "sanctity" of marriage, they'd be agitating to outlaw divorce. Which nobody is, because that would be ridiculous. As are all the arguments against same-sex marriage, which pretty much boil down to "I think it's yucky" -- which is also not any kind of basis for rule of law in a democratic republic.

So bravo to the Supreme Court -- well, five of them, anyhow. In particular bravo to Justice Kennedy and my fellow Cardinal Spellman High School graduate Justice Sotomayor, Catholics both, who I suspect felt some pressure from the authorities in their chosen religion on the subject of how to rule here, and good for them for not succumbing to it.

It's funny, we went down this road with the military, and it's following the same pattern: the arguments against homosexuals in the military were the exact same ones (to the letter) being made against having black people integrated with white people in the military. The arguments being made against same-sex marriage now are the same ones made decades ago against interracial marriage. And all four arguments were, ultimately, horseshit and based solely in bigotry.

Today was a victory against bigotry. Any day with that is a good day.

Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: "The Weight" by The Band

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kradical
Back in 1999, my then-wife Marina Frants took my first ever bio photo. She took it in the Blue Mountains outside Sydney, Australia. It served me well until 2004, when I realized I needed a photo that looked more like me. (I had different glasses, plus my beard looked different -- in '99 the beard was only a year old and hadn't settled yet.)

Current Mood: tired tired
Current Music: "For a Thousand Mothers" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
The Irish band Clannad has long been a favorite of mine -- I was fortunate enough to see them at the Beacon Theatre in the 1990s, too. Here's one of their standards, the Irish love song "Riu," as performed in 1977.

Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: "Riu" by Clannad

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kradical
On the Read Star Trek Books blog there's a new post listing the top five action sequences in Star Trek novels. I'm pleased to say that the Hirogen-Jem'Hadar fight from my 2001 DS9 novel Demons of Air and Darkness -- which I remain a decade and a half later quite proud of -- nabbed the top spot. Click this paragraph for the whole list, which also includes work by Dafydd ab Hugh, L.A. Graf, and my dear friend David Mack.

Money quote:
When a Jem’Hadar Soldier meets a Hirogen Hunter in a one on one battle royal who wins? While reading this incredible game of cat and mouse I had to remind myself to breathe more than once. Most of the air that did reach my lungs came in the form of gasps. Despite my lack of oxygen this action sequence sticks in my mind with great clarity. All I can say is, “bravo sir, bravo.”

Current Mood: pleased pleased
Current Music: "How Can I Be Old" by the Don't Quit Your Day Job Players

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kradical
Here's the full table of contents for the upcoming X-Files anthology Trust No One, edited by Jonathan Maberry, coming out in July from IDW (Amazon | Barnes & Noble):
    "Catatonia" by Tim Lebbon
    "The Beast of Little Hill" by Peter Clines
    "Oversight" by Aaron Rosenberg
    "Dusk" by Paul Crilley
    "Loving the Alien" by Stefan Petrucha
    "Non Gratum Anus Rodentum" by Brian Keene
    "Back in El Paso My Life Will be Worthless" by Keith R.A. DeCandido
    "Paranormal Quest" by Ray Garton
    "King of the Watery Deep" by Timothy Deal
    "Sewers" by Gini Koch
    "Clair de Lune" by W.D. Gagliani and David Benton
    "It’s All in the Eyes" by Heather Graham
    "The House on Hickory Hill" by Max Allan Collins
    "Time and Tide" by Gayle Lynds and John C. Sheldon
    "Statues" by Kevin J. Anderson

Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: "Yakety Axe" by Chet Atkins & Mark Knopfler

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kradical
We have an official pub date at last! The X-Files: Trust No One, an anthology of stories based on the 1990s TV series, edited by Jonathan Maberry, will go on sale from the fine folks at IDW on 28 July 2015. I've got a story in the anthology, which is the first of three that IDW will be doing. My story is a late-second-season tale called "Back in El Paso My Life Will Be Worthless."

You can preorder the trade paperback from either Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Here's the full author list, alphabetically: Kevin J. Anderson, Max Allan Collins, Peter Clines, Paul Crilley, Timothy Deal, Keith R.A. DeCandido, W.D. Gagliani & David Benton, Ray Garton, Heather Graham, Brian Keene, Gini Koch, Tim Lebbon, Gayle Lynds & John C. Sheldon, Stefan Petrucha, and Aaron Rosenberg.

Current Mood: pleased pleased
Current Music: the Yankees-Phillies game on YES

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kradical
It's been a rough time for The Chronic Rift podcast, as real life has interfered with our ability to get episodes out, but executive producer John S. Drew has been getting back on the ball. Including getting our look at each of the people to play the title role in Doctor Who back on track.

So our latest Spotlight is hosted by John and talks about the Fifth Doctor, as played by Peter Davison. Join John, me, and Krissy Myers as we talk celery sticks, the Black Guardian, "The Caves of Androzani," Adric's death, the 20th anniversary, Kamelion, and a whole lot more.

Current Mood: geeky geeky
Current Music: "Furry Sings the Blues" by Joni Mitchell & The Band

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kradical
As y'all know, I offered everyone who contributed to our GoFundMe a free short story in exchange for their generous gift. (I'm not linking to it -- we shot way past our goal, and our lives are much better now, so there's no need to keep flogging it. *wry grin*)

Not everyone said yes, but those who did requested one of the stories I control the rights to. (I wasn't comfortable giving away any of my tie-in stories, since I do not control the rights to those.)

Here's the list of stories in order of the number of people who requested them. I think it's an interesting insight into what folks want to read:

"Ragnarok and Roll"—10
This is kinda the first Cassie Zukav story, featuring Cassie having to stop Loki from bringing about Ragnarok, for which he's building power by fronting a rock and roll band. The true first Cassie story is "How You Can Prevent Forest Fires...," but that's an embryonic Cassie story that doesn't have all the elements of the usual -- most notably, she isn't in Key West yet. "Ragnarok" was the first "proper" Cassie story to see print, in 2011's Tales from the House Band Volume 1, reprinted in Apocalypse 13 in 2012 and in Ragnarok and Roll: Tales of Cassie Zukav, Weirdness Magnet. It's actually chronologically the second "proper" Cassie story, the first being "Down to the Waterline," which recently appeared in Buzzy Mag.

"Stone Cold Whodunit"—10
To my surprise -- given that the Super City Police Department novel The Case of the Claw isn't exactly a top seller for me -- this SCPD short story that appeared in the With Great Power anthology edited by John French and Greg Schauer is tied with the most requests. It's about the joys of tracking a weird murder in a world where superheroes -- and dimensional travel -- exist. I'm actually rather gratified, as The Case of the Claw is a novel that I think is one of my better ones, and I hope this will drive another sale or three.....

"A Vampire and a Vampire Hunter Walk Into a Bar"—5
This delightful little short short was actually written for a Van Helsing anthology that was to appear around the same time as the Hugh Jackman film in 2004, but the story was deemed too frivolous -- not that that's a bad thing necessarily, but all the other stories in the anthology were heavy and serious, and my story would've stuck out like a sore thumb. So I submitted it to Amazing Stories, who printed it in what turned out to be their final print issue under Paizo in February 2005, issue #608. The story was reprinted twice (in The Town Drunk in 2006 and in Without a License: The Fantastic Worlds of Keith R.A. DeCandido in 2015) and also made into an award-nominated audio by Gypsy Audio in 2012.

"Editorial Interference"—5
I suspect that this story has gotten requested mostly on the basis of its title. I wrote it for an anthology that never actually happened, it wound up being printed in a very early online zine called The Fedoras Literary Review in 1996, reprinted in Circles in the Hair in 2006 and Without a License in 2015. The story derives from my many years of experience working as an assistant editor who does all the work and gets none of the credit....

"Getting the Chair"—5
"Partners in Crime"—4
These two are Dragon Precinct stories, high fantasy police procedurals. "Getting the Chair" was the first short story I wrote in the milieu, and it actually was published in Murder by Magic edited by Rosemary Edghill around the same time as the first novel, in 2004. It's about a wizard who animates furniture being killed -- but the three pieces he animated tell contradictory stories about the murder. "Partners in Crime" is the Precinct story I wrote for Without a License, and is one of only two Precinct short stories (so far) that wasn't printed in Tales from Dragon Precinct in 2013. ("Getting the Chair" was reprinted in that collection.)

"How You Can Prevent Forest Fires..."—3
The first Cassie story I wrote, this was inspired by the urban legend about forest fires being put out by helicopters with big scoops that pick up water from the ocean and dump it on the fire -- later they find the charred corpse of a scuba diver in the fire. Some of the elements of later Cassie stories are there, from the scuba lore to Cassie's spectacular smartassery. It first appeared in Urban Nightmares, co-edited by me and the late Josepha Sherman, an anthology of tales inspired by urban legends published by Baen in 1997, and was reprinted in Ragnarok and Roll.

"-30-"—2
This is my only thriller to date. Steven Savile conceived the four-part Viral miniseries about the ripped-from-the-headlines story of the CIA using humanitarian aid in Third World countries to do covert DNA testing to find terrorists. My story was the first, published as a standalone novella, focusing on a New York journalist who stumbled onto the story and has to figure out what to do with it -- and also stay alive. The story was reprinted in Without a License.

"Sunday in the Park with Spot"—2
This little trifle about cats, squirrels, dogs, and pigeons keeping the world safe from chaos. I wrote it for Furry Fantastic, edited by Jean Rabe, in 2007, and it was reprinted in Without a License.

"The Stone of the First High Pontiff"—2
The first of what I hope to be many science fiction stories about Jin the Human Finder. It was published in the fifth Defending the Future anthology Best Laid Plans in 2013, and reprinted in Without a License.

"Gan Brightblade vs. Mitos the Mighty"—2
One of two Precinct stories I've done via Kickstarter (with a third on the way), this one is a bit of a sequel to Dragon Precinct itself, picking up on the band of heroes who were the victims of that novel, and the story of one of their finest battles. As yet, the story has only been released to Kickstarter supporters, and also to two GoFundMe contributors.....

"Fish Out of Water"—1
This is one of three Cassie Zukav stories that do not appear in Ragnarok and Roll, as it was in 2014's Out of Tune, edited by Jonathan Maberry. The story is inspired by Childe Ballad #289: "Mermaid," and has the usual blend of scuba diving, music, and Norse myth.

"The Ballad of Big Charlie"—1
This story first appeared in V-Wars, edited by Jonathan Maberry, a shared-world anthology series in which people are turned into the vampires from their ethnic heritage. "Charlie" is about the Bronx District Attorney who announces in the midst of his reelection campaign that he has the virus that changes people into vampires. The story was reprinted in Without a License: The Fantastic Worlds of Keith R.A. DeCandido, and its semi-sequel "Streets of Fire" will appear in V-Wars: Night Terrors this fall.

"Fire in the Hole"—1
"Blood on the Water"—1
"A Clean Getaway"—1
"Heroes Welcome"—1
"Catch and Release"—1
"When the Magick Goes Away"—1
These are all Precinct stories that appeared in Tales from Dragon Precinct in 2013. "Fire in the Hole" was first published in 2011's Dragon's Lure and includes an interrogation of a senile dragon. "Blood on the Water" is a Dru-and-Hawk story that is also the first vampire story I've told in the milieu. "A Clean Getaway" was written for Jean Rabe & the late Brian M. Thomsen for the Pandora's Closet anthology in 2008 about a closet that contains a great deal of filth. "Heroes Welcome" is, like "Gan Brightblade vs. Mitos the Mighty," a look at the surviving members of the heroic band from Dragon Precinct. "Catch and Release" is an Iaian-and-Grovis story where two old cases come back to haunt the Castle Guard (I actually think this is the best Precinct story I've written....). And "When the Magick Goes Away" is the first Precinct Kickstarter I did in 2012, telling the story of Torin and Danthres's first meeting and first case together as partners.

Current Mood: curious curious
Current Music: "No Particular Place to Go" by Mos Def

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kradical
Quite a number of things this weekend. It's both the summer solstice and Fathers Day, plus there are two wedding anniversaries of couples who mean a lot to me today.

First of all, Deb and Rob Anderson, a pair I met at I-Con in 2005. Actually, no, I only met Deb there, as Rob was unable to attend. But that convention -- at which Jewel Staite and I were both guests -- was my introduction to a whole bunch of Firefly fans who were anticipating the Serenity movie that fall. When the movie did come out, I trundled up to New Hampshire where Rob was managing a movie theatre and I did an event with them for opening night, selling copies of my novelization of the film and generally having a wonderful time.

Over the decade since, Deb and Rob have become dear friends. They and another couple throw regular parties, which they appropriately call "shindigs," in NH every other month or so, and while time and money have not permitted us to go up there for a shindig in quite some time, we still miss everybody up there, but most especially Deb and Rob who are two of the finest people on this Earth to draw breath. We love you guys, and hope you have a happy anniversary.

Secondly we have the anniversary of an event I was actually present for. Lucienne Diver has been my agent since 2003, but she was a dear friend long before that. In the summer of 1997, she and Pete Wheeler got married. It was an outdoor wedding, and we were all encouraged to wear garb rather than suits. I picked up the red poofy shirt, green tunic, and tights that I have continued to wear as a member of the Boogie Knights since 2006 (the tights were ballet tights, from a store frequented by Lincoln Center ballet dancers -- they finally got their first hole last weekend, 18 years after purchase).

1997 was actually a very mild summer, with only one really hot, oppressive day. Of course, that day was 21 June, when we were having an outdoor wedding. *sigh* Still, it was a lovely ceremony and a fantastic reception, and everyone had a great time. I still remember the wedding like it was yesterday, just a lovely (if sweaty) day.

What's especially fascinating is to think back to all the people who were at that wedding. Several of the couples who were there (including me and Marina) are no longer together, at least two people who were there are now dead (David Honigsberg and Josepha Sherman) -- but Lucienne and Pete are still one of the happiest and finest couples I know.

Not only that, but both couples mentioned above have two amazing kids (one each). Rob and Deb's daughter Rowan and Pete and Lucienne's son Tynan are two magnificent kids, smart, funny, brilliant, loving, geeky -- I've known Ty since he was born and Ro-Ro for much of her life, and they continue to amaze and delight me every time I see them.

Which also means, of course, that I must wish Rob and Pete a happy Fathers Day! They are fantastic fathers, as evidenced by their great kids.

While on that subject, this weekend has been a Fathers Day celebration for me and Wrenn, as well. Wrenn's father's birthday is 15 June, so we went out to see him in Philadelphia for a nice combination birthday/Fathers Day lunch. Today, we're going to Mario's on Arthur Avenue for a Fathers Day lunch with my two fathers.

The first time I met Wrenn's Dad was unfortunately not under the best of circumstances. Wrenn and I started dating around the same time her mother died -- which meant, among other things, that I never got to meet Wrenn's Mom, which saddens me. But that also meant that when I did meet him, he was a much more subdued version of himself, as he was utterly devoted to his wife and her death hit him really hard.

However over the six years since then, I have gradually watched as the person who raised Wrenn re-emerged, energized in part by getting two new grandchildren he can play with (one of whom lives in the house with him), and also with the passage of time. I can see now where Wrenn gets her sense of fun, her easy ability to get along with people she's just met, and her overall ability to enjoy life.

As for me, I've been fortunate to be raised by four people, as my parents share their lives and their home with two others. John and Helga are as much my parents as the two folks who did the biological work, and on this Fathers Day I want to thank both Daddy and John for everything they've done.

From both these wonderful men I've learned so much, but probably the thing I owe most to the pair of them (and I get it from both in equal measure, I think) is my inquisitiveness. Wrenn has often said that one of the things she loves about me is that I love to learn things and find out about things, and I get that particularly from John and Daddy. Both of them are always wondering about stuff, and are never content to just sit around and speculate, but try to reason it out and look it up and figure it out and learn about it.

Plus there's also my silly sense of humor, which I get from all four of them, but it's particularly strong in the two men. (One of my favorite stories about the early days of my parents dating is my twin uncles being really pissed about this guy my mother brought over to the house, because he was funnier than them. Still is, actually...)

While I'm at it, I also want to raise a virtual glass to my grandfathers, both deceased. Grandpa (my mother's father) died when I was seven (I was actually present for it -- details here), and Nonno died when I was in college. They both played a huge role in raising me, as both baby sat for me a lot when I was small, and I still miss them both immensely. I think they would've been proud of the adult I grew into, and I hate that they didn't get to see it. Also, my ex-grandfather-in-law, Marina's grandpa Joseph, who was a great man, a brilliant, funny, loving, wonderful man who it was my pleasure to know, who died when Marina and I were still together. All three are deeply missed.

Happy anniversary to Deb, Rob, Pete, & Lucienne. Happy Fathers Day to Daddy, John, Tom, Grandpa, Nonno, Joseph, and all the fathers, grandfathers, great-grandfathers, and father figures out there.

Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful
Current Music: "Gimme Shelter" by Patti Smith

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kradical
So the latest round of stupidity from the Rabid Canines who have already gamed the Hugo Awards are now trying to organize a boycott of Tor Books starting on 19 June 2015 (which is today). Because Tor's Irene Gallo said something mean (and also 100% accurate) about the leader of the Rabid Canines on her personal Facebook page, and because Tom Doherty didn't actually fire her for this offense (though he did publicly embarrass her on Tor.com with a public apology, which was, I think, a massive overreaction, especially since we're still waiting for a similar apology to all the women harassed by a long-time Tor editor who was allowed to resign), they have decided that Tor must be boycotted. (Never mind that one of the members of the Rabid Canine slate is John C. Wright, a longtime Tor author.)

My response to this is the same one as my dear friend David Mack, whose idea I'm totally stealing (it's possible he got it from someone else, but he's the first person I saw suggesting it):

Today, Friday 19 June 2015, I would like to ask that you buy at least one, preferably several, Tor Books.

I am not a current Tor author, and my three Tor Books (Gargantua, Farscape: House of Cards, and Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda: Destruction of Illusions) are all long out of print, so since I can't be self-serving and suggest my book, I instead suggest you order Dave's book. His 24 novel Rogue is available for preorder (it'll be out in September), and I strongly recommend that you preorder it today. Here's a preorder link on Amazon, here's one for Barnes & Noble, and here's one for Indie Bound.

If you don't want to order Dave's 24 book for whatever reason (or if you've already ordered it), then I urge you to go to Tor's web site and find something that tickles your fancy. Or go to your local bookstore and buy a book with Tor's logo.

Current Mood: stressed stressed
Current Music: "Calling Elvis" by Dire Straits

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kradical
From the Millennium Philcon, the 59th World Science Fiction Convention held in Philadelphia in early September 2001. I honestly have no idea who took this picture. Picture taken by the lovely and talented Lisa Sullivan. From left to right, it's Walter Stutzman, Peter Liverakos, me (along with a teddy bear I was given by a bunch of local Farscape fans), the late Josepha Sherman, and Brandy Hauman.

Current Mood: nostalgic nostalgic
Current Music: "Haul Away" by Mark Knopfler

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kradical
Keeping up with The Art of McCartney, here's one of the best matches of song to vocalist: Chrissie Hynde doing a lovely rendition of the Beatles' "Let It Be."

Current Mood: awake awake
Current Music: "Catapult Rock" by the Boogie Knights

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kradical
THE TRIAL OF JAMES T. KIRK! Plus, another woman from the captain's past, an eccentric-as-hell lawyer, and Kirk gets his shirt torn again. The TOS Rewatch convenes a "Court Martial."

An excerpt:
McCoy goes to a great deal of trouble to use a white-sound device (actually a microphone) to blot out the heartbeats of everyone on the bridge. Then Spock pushes three buttons to eliminate the heartbeat of the transporter chief from what they were hearing—so, uh, why couldn’t Spock just do the same thing for the bridge that he did for the transporter room????

Current Mood: tired tired
Current Music: "Marilyn" by Dan Bern

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kradical
Last week was a spectacularly shitty week, what with Scooter dying and our landlord breathing down our necks (not that I blame them, we're horribly behind) and having to start a GoFundMe, plus some other little things.

The weekend started a trend of things getting better. We drove out to Pennsylvania to visit our friend Hugh, who is dealing with cancer treatment right now. Hugh is a dear friend, and also the person who introduced me and Wrenn to each other. So he's pretty much responsible for our happiness, so the least we could do was drop in on him and hang out -- on his birthday, no less. Then we had dinner with Zan, Meredith, and Anne, then we crashed at Zan's place.

The whole reason for travelling in the first place was to be at the Maryland Faerie Festival, where the Boogie Knights were one of the featured performers. We did two sets on Sunday, one at 11am, one at 3pm. Between them, Wrenn and Sharon's friend Doug got video of the entire show, and several still pictures were taken by Meredith and Eric. It was excessively hot, which depressed attendance, and I was drenched in sweat by the end of the 3pm set, but we played well and the audience responded magnificently. All in all, a good show.

Afterward, Sharon, Doug, Meredith, Eric, Wrenn, and I went to dinner at a nice place in Havre de Grace called the Tidewater Grille, and then we headed home, much of it in the rainstorm that was kind enough to wait until the Faerie Festival was over to hit the northeast.

Today has been even better: I woke up this morning to learn that the contract issue that had been plaguing me for a while has finally resolved itself, and the licensor generally approved my outline for a novella (I need to revise the outline, but the revisions are minor and expected, primarily based on information I didn't have and should have soon).

Today it's the TOS Rewatch for "Court Martial" and then finally sitting down with the Kickstarter story "Baker's Dozen"............

Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: "You're the One" by Paul Simon

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kradical
Here's another one from The Art of McCartney, which puts together two of my favorite musical things going back to when I was a little kid. When I was very wee, I loved the music of Dr. John (I think my intro to him was his performance of "Such a Night" on The Last Waltz) and I was a huge fan of several Paul McCartney & Wings songs, and one of my three or four favorites was "Let 'Em In," a silly little song about answering the door. Now we have Dr. John covering that song!

Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: "Late in the Evening" by Paul Simon

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kradical
For the second year in a row, my band the Boogie Knights will be performing at the Maryland Faerie Festival!

We'll be doing two shows on Sunday on the Dancing Tulip Stage, one at 11am, one at 3pm. If you're at the Faerie Festival, come check us out. And if you're not at the Faerie Festival, held in the lovely Ramblewood in northern Maryland, why the heck not?

Current Mood: pleased pleased
Current Music: "Nobody's Got the Gun" by Mark Knopfler

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kradical
Out with O'Neill, the Goa'uld, and Egyptian lore; in with Mitchell, Landry, Vala, the Ori, and Arthurian lore. The Stargate Rewatch does SG-1 season 9.

An excerpt:
In addition, this season shows exactly how closely Teal’c is tied to the Goa’uld. Without them as the bad guy, Teal’c’s presence on the SG-1 team is absurd. Yes, the politics of the Free Jaffa Nation are irritating, but that’s Teal’c’s place. After all, he was the one who started the revolution. His place is on Dakara, and the shoehorning of him into SG-1 missions is clumsy at best. Teal’c certainly has his moments—particularly in “The Fourth Horseman,” both when he convinces Bra’tac to take over as leader of the council from Gerak, and when he confronts Gerak and forces him to realize what he’s done. But overall, Teal’c is a fifth wheel in this season, and would have been more valuable as a recurring role rather than a starring one.

Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: "Don't You Get It" by Mark Knopfler

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kradical
The Art of McCartney is a relatively new release that has a bunch of cool folks covering songs written or cowritten by Paul McCartney -- it runs the gamut from the Beatles to Wings to The Cute One's solo stuff. Here's one from the recently deceased B.B. King, the 1980 song off McCartney II, "On the Way."

Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: "On the Way" by B.B. King

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kradical
Back in March 2001, I was invited to be a guest at Coast Con in Biloxi, Mississippi. Terri and I -- who were still a month away from living together, though we'd already found the apartment we'd move into here in NYC -- decided to tack a trip to New Orleans onto the end of it (since they were flying us in and out of N'awlins anyhow). It was my second trip to the Big Easy, and I really need to get back down there again, as fourteen years (and counting) is far too long......

Anyhow, here's me in Jackson Square:

Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful
Current Music: "Private Investigations" by Dire Straits

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kradical
I hate to do this. I'm honestly ill to my stomach just typing this.

Our financial situation continues to suck rocks. We're paying bills, but we're behind on rent again, mainly due to a contract I was expecting back in January not actually materializing yet (I should have it this week, but even if I do -- and I'm not entirely optimistic -- I won't see any money for 30 days after I sign it), and our landlords, who have been saintly in their patience, are making eviction noises.

We need help to stave off homelessness, so I've very reluctantly started a GoFundMe campaign. Please, anything you can give, even if it's just a dollar, will help us out in this shitty time.

Thank you.

Current Mood: upset
Current Music: the Yankees-Nationals game on YES

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