Moar Regency murder mystery? Moar Regency murder mystery!
Ms. Marvel, Vol. 2: Generation Why Wilson, G. Willow
( LibraryThing Tag Cloud )
Captain Marvel, Vol. 2: Stay Fly DeConnick, Kelly Sue *
But after tracking Captain Marvel and Tic for weeks, the Haffensye Consortium has finally caught up to them both! Carol was barely able to survive the last time she squared off against the Haffensye — will the astronomical Avenger be so lucky again?
Lord of the White Hell (Lord of the White Hell, #2) Hale, Ginn *
Part two of the interlibrary-loaned series about the land on the edgeo f the industrial revolution and our son of a candy magnate protag at culturally unfriendly boarding school. And also pining. Shit goes DOWN in book two. Totally dug it. Reading the sequel series where our protag couple get a sizeable cameo appearance now!
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When Gods Die (Sebastian St. Cyr #2) Harris, C.S. *
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Dragon Age: The World of Thedas Volume 1 Gaider, David
I totally thought this would be more of a concept art/ behind the scenes book! It's more like the dragon age wiki and codicies turned up to 11 with bonus artses. I really enjoyed spotting what I could think of as forshaddowing for DAI and I'm totlaly interlibrary-loaning volume two when its a bit less new and the request will be allowed.
( LibraryThing Tag Cloud )
Champion of the Scarlet Wolf Book One (Champion of the Scarlet Wolf, #1; Cadeleonian Series, #3) Hale, Ginn * 4.35
There, creatures of myth and witchcraft—long since driven from Cadeleon—lurk in dark woods and prowl the winding streets. Soldiers and priests alike fear the return of witch-queens and even demons. Elezar soon learns that magic takes many forms, some too alluring to resist, others too terrible to endure. But just as he begins to find his place in this strange new country, the past he left behind along with his school days returns to challenge him once again.
Maisie Dobbs (Maisie Dobbs, #1) Winspear, Jacqueline * 3.91
( LibraryThing Tag Cloud )
...I have realized that my problem with this season of Game of Thrones can be boiled down to: too much rape, not enough cannibalism. I just want my Frey pie, is that too much to ask?
...Also, my internet gave up the ghost (or rather, ground to a crawl) about 40 minutes into this week's episode of Penny Dreadful. Which was less gripping than last week (a really great hour of television), but had plenty of amusement to it.
Come, let us glory in his talent together:
Last Night of the World (lovely live version with good sound).
When it's Gone it's Gone (Audio only)
I don't know why I can't get the embedding code on the iPad, and I have to Do The Things and don't have time to chase it down, but if anyone grabs them for me I'll edit the post. *looks cute*
ETA: dep't of Be Careful What You Ask For — here is Bruce Cockburn, in Afghanistan, being presented with a rocket launcher.
Weirdly, this was the second time somebody tried to give him one. The first time was apparently from the trunk of a car at a show in Washington state. He declined politely.
- the fifteen minutes of solitude this morning while I was eating breakfast
- the library gave me a DVD of Leverage
- my continuing ability to fake cheerful when all I want to do curl up on the couch and read comfort fic
- the pleasure I get from reading well-written source code
ME: Knitting a cardigan.
CHILD: Oh, who for?
ME: Well, maybe myself.
CHILD: Oh, you must be making one for everybody!
ME: Uh, no, there wouldn't be time for that, it takes quite a long time...
#and not even if you paid me but it would cost like a hundred bucks
There's an article on IO9 about her:
Tanith Lee, who died on Sunday, was one of the most prolific and influential authors of fantasy and horror. Everyone seems to know her for something different. Some people are obsessed with The Silver Metal Lover, while others devoured her fantasy series. And then there are the Blake’s 7 episodes. She left a huge bounty.
and one on the Advocate.com Remembering Tanith Lee, Celebrated Author of Queer Science Fiction
We've been having tons of flooding all over the middle part of the state, with a bridge washed away, a dam washed away, houses flooded or knocked off the foundations, some people killed and some still missing. We're okay, though some of the major streets near us were blocked with flash flooding on Monday night. Our friends all seem to be mostly okay, though some have had some flood damage. The amount of lighting Monday night was just incredible. We've got rain in the forecast for the rest of the week, so keep your fingers crossed for us.
If you want to help, Hays County was hit very hard and the Food Bank needs donations. To help animals, you can donate to the TAMU Veterinary Emergency Team. Shalom Austin is collecting for the Texas Flood Relief Fund. The Houston Food Bank could probably use some help too.
And I had a question from Veronica:
Will the newest Raksura novella be offered in an audiobook?
Yes, and it has the same reader, Christopher Kipiniak. I know it's been recorded but I'm not sure when it's being released.
There’s a talking point which says that the average size of the communities being shut down/having services removed is 5. This may be true, but it also includes those with larger populations.
Kiwirrkurra with 165 people, Warralong with 155, Burringurrah with 150, Jameson/Mantamaru with 115, Karalundi with 106, and Tjuntjuntjara with 102. This list seems really concentrated in the central deserts – looks like it will wipe out even the ‘big’ communities in the Western Desert. That means no one living between, say Balgo and Laverton and the border, which is fairly much all an area with a strong cultural connection to the land. The people in the Western Desert did not come off their land til the 1950s and 60s when the Laverton mission made a concerted effort to bring them in. One family just decided not to follow and stayed out there, on their own, til the 1980s. People began leaving the missions and going back to the lands pretty much as soon as it became legal for them to do so (when their movements were no longer controlled by the Department of Native Affairs in the early 1970s).
I don’t know what the solution is to this. There is never going to be a massive employment boom in the central deserts and it will always be expensive to provide electricity, water, housing, education. But it is important to people to live on their own land. And I can bet that if there were a community of 165 white people in the middle of nowhere, the Government would find a way to fund it. Look at what happened at Wittenoom – the town was shut down in 1966 (because it was an asbestos mine) but those residents who chose to stay kept getting services like water, electricity, etc until 2006.
I am trying to be fair handed in my comments, but I cannot help but suspect that part of the motivation to remove people from the central desert is a hope that one day it will be possible to mine the vast reserves of uranium under there. Breaking cultural contact with the land would mean no native title over it, which would make it easier for future miners. Anyway, that is speculation.
What I can say with confidence is that the average of 5 people talking point is rubbish.
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen (14506 words) by missbecky
Fandom: Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015)
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Harry Hart | Galahad/Gary "Eggsy" Unwin
Characters: Gary "Eggsy" Unwin, Harry Hart | Galahad, Roxy Morton | Lancelot, Merlin (Kingsman)
Additional Tags: Christmas, Fluff, Romance, Background Relationships, Roxy/Merlin, Shower Sex, Anal Sex, Blindfolds
Eggsy has spent weeks trying to plan the perfect Christmas for Harry. And even though he still doesn't know what to get for Harry, it's all coming together wonderfully. He's thought of everything -- except for the fact that Harry has been making plans of his own.
1. Fraser & His Rays - An hour talking specifically about Fraser, Ray, and Ray, and how vids about them differ, both in subject matter and visual/aural cues. Discussion & sample vids.
2. The Three Fannish Waves (So Far) - due South fandom seems to have come in three waves so far: the initial fannish run including the Ray Wars; the first revival in the 2000s' where polyshipping really took hold; and the current revival that is exploring and expanding on the world and the secondary characters. Vids from each "era" as well as discussion about the subjects people focus(ed) on in vidding and where to go in the future. Discussion & sample vids.
3. Best Of - dS has an impressive history of vids, and this is an hour to hit fannish favorites! Suggestions will be gathered and I will curate a show consisting of as many as I can fit in 45 minutes. Vidshow only, possibly will provide time after each vid for a minute of squeeing if there's interest.
SO. Which of those three would you like the due South timeslot to focus on? Please vote!
I am going to Vividcon and I think the panel should be
Fraser & His Rays
The Three Fannish Waves (So Far)
I am NOT going to Vividcon but I think the panel should be
Fraser & His Rays
The Three Fannish Waves (So Far)
Original Title: ヒメゴト～十九歳の制服～ (Himegoto~Juukyuu Sai no Seifuku~)
Author: Minenami Ryou
Publisher: Big Comics
Status in Japan: 8 volumes, complete
Scanlator: Megchan's Scanlations feat. Audrey + Krim
Scanlation Status: Ongoing
More Info: Baka Updates
Summary: This is the story of three college freshmen with secrets: Yuki, aka Yoshiki, a boyish girl who gets off on wearing her old high school uniform skirt; Mikako, who acts innocent around her classmates, but at night pretends to be a 15-year-old and has sex for money; and finally there's Kaito, who's obsessed with Mikako to the point of dressing up like her.
Chapter Summary: Mikako invites Yoshiki over to visit, but first she has to get rid of Sho!
Chapter 39: Temptation
Chapter 40: Falter
First there was Safe House, in which Diana Barrigan and the Ninth Doctor are married and running a safe house in the Lake District. It's a bit gloomy, and Diana doesn't get enough to do, but the Marquis De Carabas is in it, and we're probably going to proceed... cautiously.
Then Galavant, which I enjoyed more than I expected. I've seen a lot of people reacting delightedly to this series, so I probably shouldn't have been surprised. I'd describe it as the tongue-in-cheek lovechild of The Princess Bride and Disney's Beauty and the Beast.
We rounded the evening off with the pilot of Jane the Virgin. I usually recoil from voiceovers, and male narrators describing female characters is at the least appealing end of the spectrum (*glares at Vicky Cristina Barcelona*), but this was bright and charming, with an original premise and complicated but likeable characters, and I immediately went and tried to buy season 1 on DVD. (It's not released yet.)
So. No spoilers for any of those, please!!
And since I'm listing recently consumed media, I have to thank whoever recced Courtney Milan's historical romances to me. (teaotter, was it you?) I read The Duchess War and The Heiress Effect over the weekend, both from the Brothers Sinister series, and I'm planning to pounce on The Countess Conspiracy next, but not until I've cleared out my to-do list a bit. The novels have much to recommend them: female friendships, characters with complex agendas that go far beyond who they'll end up marrying, women being active in a variety of interesting ways, political sensibility. Very satisfying.
I've run out of Will Smith films I want to see: we watched Hitch, and it was cute and fun, but I think it might be time for something different now.
And in Kdrama news, J and I finished Dating Agency Cyrano last week. It was good, though it seemed to jump genres in the final couple of episodes, when it turned unexpectedly dramatic -- kidnappings and so on. Never mind. Min Young, the heroine, became ever more determined and awesome as the show progressed, and Gong Yoo's cameo in episode nine is something I will carry in my heart for a while. (I loooove him!) This week we're re-starting Empress Ki, a sweeping historical girl-undercover-as-a-boy drama. I'll be the one trying to keep all the political machinations and hordes of minions straight.
2. There are cats at my house now. small fuzzy purry things that meow at you until you cuddle them it's so great.
3. invisible_ficathon is running Lost Library - last year it ran an exchange for fanfic for fictional fandoms mentioned in other works; this time the exchange is for people to create the fictional canon itself. (I like the *concept* of the fanfic version better but I think a lot of people were confused about it last year and a bunch of stuff was nominated that really didn't work with that conceit, this version is probably going to make more sense.)
Anyway I am definitely nominating Dogcopter (my chances of a Dogcopter/Dog Cops crossover are slim to none, but I live in hope) and the lost song Breq sang in Ancillary Sword about that one time Anaander Mianaai had a really bad breakup.
I'm not sure what else though? You can now have multiple things under one fandom that count as one request so I'll probably put in some more Radchaai stuff and some more Steven Universe stuff but beyond that I dunno. I'm still really excited about all the stuff I nominated last year, but none of it got offers, so. On the other hand as it works this year, if I understand, it'll match on the actual source canon rather than the fictional canon, so surely at least the XF ones would have a chance? :/ Maybe I'll nom The Complete Poems of Jean Prouvaire or sth. Does anybody have any suggestions for other stuff I should nominate....
(I probably shouldn't sign up because will be super-busy in July, but eh, 500 words min, and I'm currently feeling good about my Remix assignment.)
4. I bought a Hugo vote. I figure between using the voting packet and nominees to fulfill my "read recent short fiction" resolution and all the joy that following seventy years' worth of grade-A fandom wankery has given me over my lifetime, forty dollars to Worldcon was cheap, and I have the money right now. Of course that means I have until the end of July to read, at minimum, The Goblin Emperor and The Three-Body Problem. Life is hard.
(PS I read Ancillary Sword last weekend! :D More to come on that later probably but now I really really really want Breq/Seivarden/Mercy of Kalr conduitfic/identity porn/kinkfic/roleplay/threesome/you know what I mean, where Seivarden plays ancillary for both Breq and Ship. Because yes ok.)
5. My class is over! Which means that a, I have days off again!!! and b, I am now officially a Maryland Master Naturalist Intern, w00t.
Also, I really hope Obama says fuck you, I'm doing it anyway, because that's exactly the problem with the court's decision. I.e., his administration chooses who to prosecute, and what the hell is Texas going to do, go case by case and sue INS for not bringing an action?
Obama should do what he wants and fuck the Fifth Circuit, seriously.
( mainly spoilers for Ronan's storyline )
Someone with a better grasp of the subtleties should write that.
If one of those old-school sf fans who keeps trying to make teenagers read Heinlein juveniles was hired to make a big-budget movie as propaganda for optimism, they might well have created Tomorrowland.
The plot, as best as I can summarize it without too many spoilers, is that a little boy tries to build a jetpack in 1964. He is encouraged by a mysterious little girl, Athena, who tells him to hope and keep trying and to believe in optimism and the future. Then the movie jumps ahead to Casey, a genius teenage girl who believes in hope and trying and optimism and the future. We know this because most of her dialogue early on consists of stuff like, “Keep trying! You can’t give up hope! Believe in the future! Cynicism is bad! Optimism is good!”
Then she gets a magic button that transports her to a cool future straight out of Analog circa 1950. (In one of the few actual cool bits in the movie, her physical self and surroundings in the current world continue to affect her self in the future; when she moves, both her selves move, so if she walks into the wall of her present-day house, she smacks into an invisible barrier in the future. Sadly, not much is made of this.)
And then she meets Athena, who proceeds to direct her on a plot coupon collecting adventure. There are random killer robots. And also George Clooney, the idealistic little boy, now grown up and bitter. Casey lectures him on optimism, in case you missed her speech the first time. But even if you missed it the first two times, it’s okay; she gives it about six more times. And if you miss those, you still won’t miss the speech, because other characters give it too. Repeatedly.
I liked the girl who played Athena. She had a surprising amount of technical skill. I did not like the girl who played Casey, but I think that was at least as much the fault of the script as the actress. Clooney had the advantage of playing the bitter guy, which meant he had the least number of paens to optimism.
I appreciated the message – you can change the world, but first you have to believe that change is possible; optimism is not stupidity and despair is not wisdom; the future might be pretty cool – but I did not appreciate that about 50% of the total dialogue consisted of explicitly stating the message. After about the twentieth time some character robotically recites something like, “Optimism is good! Despair is bad! Believe in a bright future!” I started feeling like I was in the Brave New World. Which is not at all what was intended.
Also, considering that the entire movie was about the idea that the future is cool… the future was not actually that cool. It had robots, jet packs, floating swimming pools, and floating trains. The swimming pools were neat, but by now kids have seen lots of movies depicting cool futures, and pretty much all of them have a more comprehensive and appealing vision of future coolness than “things that float.”
And also, the future was not actually the future. It was a pocket dimension. I think. It was explained several times, collecting additional plot holes and confusingness with each iteration.
This was by no means the worst movie I’ve ever seen. It had some good bits. And it was at least bad in a different way than big-budget kids’ movies are usually bad. I normally find Disney movies highly competent but slick. This was not slick. It was a hot mess. I suspect that there was so much interference from so many people, many of them probably trying to make sure the audience could follow it, that it ended up simultaneously convoluted and simplistic, over-explained and confusing. And while it was not the worst movie I’ve ever seen, it is very possibly the most anvillicious.
I haven't read all her books (who could? the woman was damn prolific) but in the early eighties Ardath Mayhar pressed a copy of short stories into my hands and she was right, I loved them. I can see the criticism; one person's exotic and lush wording is a critic's overwrought and purple prose, but man, when we were dressing up to see The Lost Boys, Lee was to the baby goths in semi-rural East Texas a literary angel swathed in black velvet with a touch of sci-fi chrome.
I can't bring myself to wish for an end to the rain -- this is a land where we water house foundations through the summer to keep the concrete from breaking, after all -- but I'll admit to a yen for sunlight. Just an hour, maybe two, then it can cloud over and drop water on us again. I haven't had to water my garden yet, which is good, because the air is so full of mosquitoes it looks like smoke from a smudgy campfire.
The lakes are full and the spillways are open. I giggled at the folks who brought cameras out to gawk at the Trinity River overflow but (a) the Trinity river doesn't overflow often (ten years, ish) and (b) no one looks askance at tourists gawking at Niagara, after all.
Our plans for the weekend were rained out, so I wet finished and hung up (rather than blocking flat, as I should have) the sweater of the wonky sleeves and yay! they did relax and block into less wonkification. There's a book on wet finishing for weaving called Magic in the Water and yeah, it is magic. Or physics, technically, but as I often have reason to say at work, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" and for me, the bar is pretty low.
Anyway, so what would have been a few hours under the sun in August was instead two days of blocking under a fan right now, impatiently, today, and so now I have a sweater with beautiful cables. And a weekend that should have been spent camping out past Lake Bridgeport was instead grilling in the back yard between showers, but I slept in my bed, so yeah, I'm calling that one a win, too. 8-) Camping's good, too, so that glass is half full either way.
Meanwhile, I'm having a dilemma about an apartment. Don't think there's any advice anyone can really offer, but writing it out might help me sort through it I guess.
( 6 month lease )
So, Record storms in Texas and Oklahoma is a thing. Hays County is adjacent to Travis to the southwest; most if not all the bad weather is coming from the west-southwest, so they're getting hit even harder than Travis county is, where I live.
For those playing the home game, Texas, like California, has been a drought state for several years; that was a key reason for the massive Bastrop fires a few years ago that could literally be seen from space.
As most of you can guess, getting rain is awesome; we need it. Getting it at this intensity and this fast isn't. On one hand, it's raising our lake water levels, which is super important; on the other....I'm going to give a very mild, non-drama example of the problem that places that are in danger are having.
I live on what's called a hundred year flood plane (this includes about a full third of Austin, btw). We have to get flood insurance, but actual flooding simply doesn't happen unless a lot of very specific conditions are met (I mean, usually its has to be the perfect storm of shitty luck). A few years after we moved to Austin, they remodeled the gully out back (Austin is filled with these) from a muddy dry creek run-off to a limestone-and-rock quarry that would be fucking awesome to intertube and it goes for miles in our neighborhood (and the equivalent exists in many others). So when rain hits, it looks cool--seriously, I'll put up video if needed, its awesome--and we can enjoy it because the highest it gets is stil about ten to fifteen feet below our backyard.
However, we've reached saturation of the ground at this point; it's not just not dry, it's wet as in squelch even after twenty-four hours of no rain (which has happened like, once in the past couple of weeks, maybe twice).
Patio: 12 feet from door to edge by about 18-22 ft; it's wet I'm not measuring now.
Yard: 20-26 feet from patio edge to the back fence.
Back fence: one foot before drop off to watershed.
So when it rains now--and it comes down hard and fast then slow and eh then hard and fast, break, repeat--the water is immediately in puddle form and from my understanding of physics and engineering, it's still running off to the back but not fast enough. Most recently, I watched in fascination as standing water crawled about four and a half inches up the patio to quiver there before the rain let off and it slowly withdrew back to the (already soaked) ground. Right now, it's standing just short of the patio, which is about three inches above dirt level at that point and one half inch from the top of the water standing there.
Here's what I didn't even know about flooding because where I grew up--rural--we were on top of hill and everything rolled down fast: your entire backyard does not have to be flooded and your watershed does not have to be overflowing and gravity and elevation sometimes work against you when speed is involved. My backyard right now has several high spots which are just mud that are higher than my patio, but right now--the rain just started again--the water just went over the lip of my patio again at the four inch mark and is crawling toward me.
However, math! The patio--due to age and dirt and maybe God--has a slight downward inclination due to settling over the years, so the water does have to work to get to me. And it's only like, maybe a quarter inch of water right now edging toward me like very shallow doom. So most of it's running back to the yard to supersaturated dirt and I need more geometry to work out how long it might take with x hours of rain and y amount of rain per x to get to my back door (which is about three inches above the patio) or possibly wonder why I'm trying to do the math of flooding right now.
Also, I'm resenting that little island of perfectly unflooded dirt (wet, granted) a few feet from the patio right now. Seriously, what's up with that?
Before I had only skimmed reactions to avoid being spoiled too much, so now that I've seen it, and indeed enjoyed it quite a bit, I'm looking to read these. So if you have made any posts or have enjoyed someone else's meta, please point them out to me?
( spoilers ) that was exciting!
And I've spent the past few days marathoning Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and being earwormed with the theme song. It's funny, though it'd be funnier/better without Tina Fey's typical ironic/hipster *isms littering the joint. I also really came to care about the characters despite their utter loopiness.
A while back I did a series of posts about how technology has shaped – and continues to shape – our fandom culture: here, here and here. The short version: We do not use technology, technology uses us. And I am not alone in blogging about this.
I came across two interesting posts discussing fandom’s migration to newer platforms and think they both fit into my belief that fandom needs to recognize the larger social and technological forces shaping our community.
“The mix of locked and public accounts, trying to follow multi-branching conversations when sometimes you can’t see what half the people are saying, and of course the character limit are all huge obstacles to good fandom discussion.....Twitter has the extra wrinkle of locked accounts, especially in RPF fandoms where harassment from “mainstream” fans of the sport/movie/musician/etc is a very real possibility. It’s understandable, but since locking is a binary, all or nothing situation, it has the effect of first isolating a locked account and then, when they’ve become a sufficiently big presence in a circle of fandom Twitter accounts, isolating newcomers from that portion of the discussion.
Next up: a fan argues that Tumblr benefits both visual and text based fan whereas LJ mainly benefited text base fans (as a text based fan I can say that – for me – Tumblr does not work as a method of discussing with other text based fans. But that is a side point to her main point.)
“……what I mean by that is, I see a lot of posts, primarily from writerly types, talking about how much they miss LJ and how much better it was and how the friends from LJ are the best friends they’ve ever made and stuff like that, which is fine, as someone who cut their teeth on LJ myself, I understand where they’re coming from, but I don’t think they realize that tumblr—for all its many, many flaws—has made fandom participation much more accessible to nonwriter types than LJ ever was. if you didn’t write on LJ, you didn’t get noticed, you didn’t get the attention and the lifelong friends and people caring about your not-fic writing, because you just didn’t get that exposure. the same is true of tumblr, to a degree, given the creation-based nature of fandom in general [and there’s a whole other meta post to be had about fandom culture’s dirty little secret of not caring about people unless they produce content, but I’m not going to go into that here], but the difference is, on tumblr, if you can’t write creatively [like me /coughs], there are a far wider variety of entry points; gifs were functionally unknown on LJ, but on here gifmakers get a fuckton of attention, as do graphics makers, meta writers, and [admittedly to a lesser extent] vidders, and fanart has a wider platform on which to reach people…..
……this obviously has a great deal to do with the nature of the platform on which fandom conducts its activities; LJ was text based, so text-based content creation was king, and tumblr is image based, so image-based content gets more attention this way, but the main difference, in my view, is that LJ only had text, which resulted in written content dominating to the point of near total exclusion of nonwriters… I suspect the people singing LJ’s praises didn’t experience how isolating it could be if you didn’t produce the kind of content favored by the platform at the time. Meanwhile the relationships I’ve made on tumblr as a result of a major form of fandom interaction finally shifting to something I’m capable of doing are just as longlasting as the relationships made between writers on LJ, and I bristle a bit at the implication that they’re not.”
Saturday started early, with an 8:00 am to 9:00 am mini press junket for bloggers and podcasters and other reporters. I did a bunch of interviews with really fun people that I only got to talk to for five minutes. The Comicpalooza staffers and volunteers were all absolutely great, too.
After that, I went back to the hotel room to get the rest of my group and force them to take me to breakfast because I was starving. (When we were waiting for the hotel restaurant, we saw Stan Lee go by.) Then we headed over to the con, because I had a panel at 11:30, signing at the Barnes and Noble booth at 1:00 (and if you're still at the con, I signed stock for them so they should have signed copies of The Cloud Roads, The Serpent Sea, and The Siren Depths), and then another panel at 2:30.
I didn't say enough yet about how incredible the costumes were. Here's a picture of one:
Those wings actually snapped out when she pushed a button.
The panel at 11:30 was the worldbuilding panel, in a packed room. (The panel programming for the literary track was awesome, and the writing panels were well-attended, often standing room only.) The other panelists were P. J. Hoover, Steve Bein (M), Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, Rachael Acks, Kerrelyn Sparks and we had a great panel with a lot of good questions from the audience.
The panel at 2:30 was tips for aspiring writers, also in a full room, with Patrice Sarath, Rachael Acks (M), Rachel Caine, Mercedes Lackey, Larry Dixon. We answered a lot of questions and had a fun time. Then I found my husband and our friend and we went to lunch (yes, at 4:00 pm) with Patrice. Between the panel and the lunch I was so tired I thought I was going to die, then after I ate, I had this weird false burst of energy again, so we went back to the con and did a more thorough walk through the Artists' alley section of the room.
Oh, and we got to see Peter Mayhew at his booth, and Henry Winkler. Henry Winkler was kind of awesome. He would walk around and go down the line of people and chat with everyone, and hug people, and generally act like he had invited you to a party he was having in his booth. It was just a fun place to walk by as everybody in line always looked so happy.
By about 7:00 I started to fall over again, so we went to the room and rested a bit, then met up again with Patrice at 8:00 for more food and deserts. We went back to our room at about 11:00 and collapsed.
On Sunday we were leaving in the late afternoon, so we went ahead and packed the car and checked out of the hotel after breakfast. We had a huge bout of bad storms and flooding through the central part of the state, including a bridge washed away, but luckily it wasn't near Houston. Though there was some rain and storms early in the day.
We did the floor for a while (no light sabres, no) and then I did another signing at Barnes and Noble, talked to some friends, and then did my last panel at 2:30. It was business tips for writers, with Jonathan Maberry, Kimberly Frost, and K. M. Tolan. I was the moderator (the program coordinator had emailed me earlier and asked me to do it when the other moderator had to cancel). We answered a ton of questions from a great audience, so it was fun too.
After that, we had to leave. I kind of didn't want to, because we kept running into friends and the con went on to Monday and I didn't get to see robots fight, but we had to go.
We got out of the downtown area without rain or traffic problems, but on highway 59, there was a slowdown merging onto 290, and someone almost rear-ended us. Like, I heard brakes squealing long enough to say twice "Please don't hit us." Looked back and there was a white car with smoke coming from the brakes. I think she must have stopped with inches to spare and I would like to thank her very much for being able to do that, because yeah, I can't afford to get another car. So we were very, very awake at that point and drove the rest of the way home with no problems.
Friday we went up to the pool on the 23rd floor and went swimming and sat in the hot tub. It was a gorgeous pool, really nice, and I'm glad we went that day because we had no time to do it the rest of the con. I didn't have a panel until 5:30, so we were able to do the con floor.
The con is basically three stories of giant convention center, with the entrance and skyway from the hotel on the second floor, where a lot of people were walking back and forth, etc, and the third floor, where the gaming, the panels, NASA, the celebrity q and a sessions, the wrestling ring, the roller derby (not kidding) and the bands and other events. The first floor was registration and the dealers' room, artists' alley, maker faire (3d printers, robots, science!, laser tag, virtual reality game booths, etc), food court (barbeque, stir fry, Cuban sandwiches, deli, etc. The pulled pork sandwiches at Southern Lady Barbeque were delicious) and the celebrity signing booths.
The con was bigger this year, and had the entire convention center, which allowed them to (I think) make the aisles bigger and not crowd the front of the room with the dining tables and the kids' play area, so there was far less crowding. The crowd flow seemed to work pretty well, as far as I could tell.
And it's a very diverse crowd. Houston is a very diverse city anyway, and you saw every kind of people, often in costume, and every age from 60s and 70s down to babies. Lots of women, lots of teenagers, lots of families with young kids. (Often in costume.) The con has a very exciting, vital feel, and you see a lot of people smiling and just having a great time. I think this is the future of fandom, and I like it a lot.
(Oh, and despite all the kids (day passes for kids were $10.00 and there was a programming track of kids activities) there are cash bars scattered through the dealers and artists areas. And a roving bar on a bicycle. And a booth for Virus Vodka giving samples in test tubes.)
We shopped a lot but didn't buy much, because after paying for hotel and food there wasn't a ton of money left. I did get a Doctor Who t-shirt, a couple of comic books, and SGC and Stargate Atlantis uniform patches. There was some beautiful original art, which was very tempting. And the light sabre booth. Oh god, the light sabre booth.
(Conversation I had with my husband: "No, no, no, you can not have something that expensive that's just a pretty toy."
Him: "If I get one I'll get one for you too."
Random man: "That's the way to do it."
Me: "No, no, (picking up a gorgeous silver and blue thing labeled Azure Reaper) no, no matter how pretty and wonderful and absolutely perfect toy it's-- No!"
We did not get light sabres even though he threaten to whine about it in the car all the way home.)
There weren't many celebrities on the floor yet, by Joel Hodgson from Mystery Science Theater 3000 was there, and I am a huge fan. But I have a weird phobia where I am terrified to speak to them. So my husband went and got a picture with Joel Hodgson, who asked why his wife was hiding twenty yards away by the pillar, and my husband told him why, and he pointed at me and called me cute and adorable. So that was my idea of a happy celebrity encounter, where I can have it at a safe distance.)
I did my first panel, Fifty Shades of Fae, about fairy in books, media, etc, which went really well. By then it was 6:30 and we and the friend who was staying with us went across the street to a nice restaurant for dinner. We're sitting there, eating, and I suddenly look up and coming in to be seated is George and Brad Takei. So that was pretty enormously cool. (We also saw Stan Lee coming out of the hotel restaurant the next morning.)
This is getting long, and I still have a lot more to tell, so I'll continue in another post.
(The rest of my photos are on my tumblr in the comicpalooza tag.)
( you will be shiny and chrome )
Finally, outside the cut, for anyone who enjoyed Furiosa in this film, allow me to strongly recommend Kameron Hurley's book God's War, the protagonist of which is extremely similar to Furiosa. My favorite non-spoilery quote about her is:
The world could burn around her, the cities turn to dust, the cries of a hundred thousand fill the air, and she would get up after the fire died and walk barefoot and burned over the charred soil in search of clean water, a weapon, a purpose. She would rebuild.
So if you wanted it in ebook and hadn't gotten it yet, now is a great time. I have no idea how long the sale is going to last.
In fact, I was almost late for work this morning because I was gonna get ready and then chapter 11 happened, so of course I had to read that the whole way through. My reaction through that: ( spoilers )
I'm pretty sure I've seen some posts by people here who've read the book; I have skipped them all for spoilers so I don't remember who wrote anything now, but if you've read it, please lmk so I can hit you up when I'm done :-)
( Blahs. )
So: the first episode of Borgen was excellent; I'm hoping it won't get too dark. Penny Dreadful is still not for me, partly because I use up all my trauma tolerance on Orphan Black. Today was sunny and freezing. I hope to get back to writing again very soon; I just need to finish this book I'm reading first... and somehow refrain from starting the next in the series.
Locals: for some effective armchair activism, try Action Station. They have several campaigns running atm, including child poverty, climate change, and the TPPA. From time to time, they poll their members to see what issues are important and how to address them. It's the low-energy, low-time-investment end of grassroots campaigning, but they/we are making a difference. I recommend getting on their mailing list.
( steve/peggy, little red dress? for zekkass )
( Steve/bucky, something with one or both of them taking a bath? for nekare )
( Oliver/Felicity: Felicity brings a kitten down to the Foundry? for shirokou )
( Liv/Ravi: two weirdos who fell in love for angelgazing )
( steve, bucky, and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden? or the New York Botanical Garden for tygermama )
( Steve/Natasha, teaching Natasha how to use his shield for blackestglass )
( Jake/Amy, breathe for kasuchi )
( Dick/Jason, truth or dare? for consistently-unsure )
( Bucky/Natasha, surprise for allofthefeelings )
( Nick/Cassie, after the war? for thanbooksmightmean )
( Nyssa/Laurel: Laurel FINALLY pins Nyssa to the floor during training. for anonymous )
( Steve/Peggy for thatgirlnevershutsup )
( Steve/Bucky/Natasha. First kisses for chujo-hime )
As always, let me know what you think.