Ah holidays

If you haven’t figured it out, the Mad Geniuses have been enjoying time with their families this week. Okay, I’m sure a few of us even ventured out to shop on Black Friday (shudder). I know I speak for all of us when I say we hope everyone had a fun and safe Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Shop Local Saturday and whatever the catch word is for today.

I will even admit to having just rolled out of bed and realizing it’s my day to blog. Since I haven’t had coffee, cogent blogging isn’t going to happen. So here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to throw the floor open for you guys to talk about whatever you want to when it comes to books and publishing. If you have any questions, ask them. We’ll be checking in throughout the day to answer.

There is something else I want you to consider. There are five Fridays next month. That means we have one day without someone scheduled to post. Tell us what you would like to see. Do you want a guest post — and, if so, would you be willing to write one and on what. Or would you rather see one or more of the bloggers here put together a silly tale of entering the New Year?

Now I’m off to find coffee and see if my brain won’t wake up. The floor is now yours.


  1. MINE ALL MINE! I have the floor!
    *looks around for a second*
    Now what do I do? *grabs mop and starts cleaning*

          1. *turns page* Huh? Sorry I was— Hey! No, you may not use my tail as a book duster. Humpf! *stalks off in a kitty snit, pushing book ahead of her*

    1. Post the stuff that would get you in trouble for thought crime if posted in your usual haunts? Don’t you have speech laws in Canada?

      *Applies that standard to self*

      But I don’t want to talk about my (possibly) new critical theory that much. Especially not by focusing on the elements that most useful for managing to tick off even this crowd.

        1. Theory? You mean it isn’t (yet?) Uphoff’s Law?

          Uphoff’s Law – The Professional critic is an elitist snob who not only cannot enjoy reading a good book, but would deny anyone else the pleasure. They suffer for their ‘art’ – and so should you!

          That about cover it? Granted, that is a First Draft.. from an ox (draft, after draft, after draft… say, it sure is drafty, ain’t it?) who can be rather slow – and that’s on a good day, mind.

          1. Here, Orvan, have a draft.
            *passes the ox a beer*

            I like it, Pam. I think they’re, oh, what was the term, Mrs. Grundy? That sounds right.

        2. I guess my like of interest in movies/TV could be understood as snobbery, and that is mostly where the thing is aimed.

  2. Now going back, thinking about stuff. If there’s an extra day, make it an off day. You folks are doing stellar duty by answering questions I have and I think you all deserve a proper break. I have an idea I am running down that needs more work fleshing out. post wise(actually a couple when I get on them between WIP’s). Will see how they turn out afterwards.

  3. I have ideas for three different guest posts rolling around in my head. Somehow I need to pry loose the time to set my thoughts in order to produce coherent, reasonably shapely prose and get something resembling polished copy sent in.

    But not tonight, because I’m going to be going to our storage unit, digging out four different discontinued t-shirt designs, inventorying them, and getting them listed on eBay. Windycon flopped so hard that we’ve got to bring in some additional cash if we’re going to avoid financial disaster.

  4. You know the little blue things that come out at night and make bagels for the British soldiers?
    Well, I’ve got one stuck in my sock drawer. May I borrow a frog wrench?

  5. “Twas the night before New Year and all through the house
    all the creatures were stirring
    and hitting the punch.Well, it’s going to take some work . . .

  6. And now, ladies and gentlemen, “The Motorcycle White Boy Song!”

    Well, I’m the Motorcycle White Boy, I ride it all night long.
    Yeah, I’m the Motorcycle White Boy, I ride it all night long.
    And when I ride my motorcycle, I sing the Motorcycle Song.

    Well, you get your motorcycle, you be a White Boy, too.
    Yeah, you get your motorcycle, you be a White Boy, too.
    But you won’t be one like me; No, you’ll be one like you.

    I got my Motorcycle Brothers, and Cycle Sisters too.
    I got my Motorcycle Brothers, and Cycle Sisters too.
    And with my Motorcycle Family, I don’t feel Motorcycle Blue.

    Well, I’m the Motorcycle White Boy, I ride it all night long.
    Yeah, I’m the Motorcycle White Boy, I ride it all night long.
    And when I ride my motorcycle, I sing the Motorcycle Song.

  7. A guest post would be fine, but I admit I am not up to it.
    Still, better than a pest ghost – and I am not up to that either.
    So perhaps it might be best that silliness about.
    I might be up to that. The reading of it, that is.
    As for writing? I suppose if I start yesterday, I might just be ready for New Year’s Eve 2022. That is not the way to bet. Even ox know that.

  8. I’ve got something started that might work for a blog filler. “When Ideas Attack (In the middle of a different story)”.

  9. How about finding a paragraph somewhere and everyone who wants to contributes another paragraph making a story. Two paragraph sources I can think of are The Tenant of Wildfell Hall or some James Fenimore Cooper. Either one mixed into some fantasy/science fiction should be pretty funny. Here’s another idea but it would be a lot of work for the mg’s… Write the paragraphs anonymously and make us guess who did it — or who you are imitating?

  10. https://aeon.co/essays/a-cult-of-fakery-has-taken-over-what-s-left-of-high-culture
    “Hence for a long time now, it has been assumed that there can be no authentic creation in high art which is not in some way a ‘challenge’ to public culture. Art must give offence, stepping out armed against the bourgeois taste for the conforming and the comfortable, which are simply other names for kitsch and cliché. The result of this is that offence itself becomes a cliché. If the public has become so immune to shock that only a dead shark in formaldehyde will awaken a brief spasm of outrage, then the artist must produce a dead shark in formaldehyde — this, at least, is an authentic gesture. In place of the late American art critic Harold Rosenberg’s ‘tradition of the new’, we have the ‘cliché of the transgressive’ — a repetition of the would-be unrepeatable.”

    Discuss, as it pertains to Science Fiction. >:D

    1. I certainly saw some of that as I saw browsing the shelves this afternoon. Including one that looked so bad I was almost tempted to get it, just based on the glowing praise from NPR on the jacket. Apparently reading science-fiction from Iraq will make you anti-war, or anti-American, or something.

      1. Ready to compromise US interests by putting a priority on exterminating Iraqi populations in order to prevent more from being written. XD

        (I kid I kid. Haven’t read it, so can’t assess.)

  11. I’d be happy to do a guest post on space regulators for science fiction writers if anyone thought that was interesting. I’d just need a deadline. I live for deadlines.

      1. Oh, wow. Just wow. On the one hand, I was pleased to be trim. On the other hand, I’m about 5’8″ so I think “petite” got abused. On the third hand, I went and looked up what the Commercial Space Launch Act defines as a person. According to 51 USC 50902 a person is “ an individual and an entity organized or existing under the laws of a State or country.” Arguably your AI is a person just by dint of existing. I think your AI needs a launch license. I’ll go clear that up at ATH. Just so no one’s confused.

        1. I can always change the height. Still, at 5’8″ Athena is half a head taller.

          What I’d like to know is, what is the correct thing you charge an illegal launch with? I just made something up, it would be hilarious to have the right statute and clause in there. 🙂

          1. I’d say something was an “unlicensed” launch rather than illegal. If you want to be more colloquial, you’d say Athena was in violation of the Commercial Space Launch Act by conducting unlicensed launches. (I know, that’s a lawyer’s idea of colloquial. But, wait, there’s more.) Or, you could say Athena was in violation of 51 USC 50904, which requires that a person obtain a license to launch in the United States. Or, you could say she violated section 50904 of Title 51 of the United States Code.

            Do you notice, by the way, that the space law is in Title 51? Congress just moved it there around six years ago. They maintain stoutly that it has nothing to do with Area 51.

            1. I put it in. I also finished the whole section. Available to read. Signify in the usual fashion, with green smoke.

    1. You know, I think we need some fictional laws we could reference when needed in our fiction.

      (1) the standards for determining what alien species we have to test for sapience. (2) the laws about first contact. (3) Regulations about applying for colonization license.

      “You know, It never occurred to me that something the size of a gerbil could be intelligent. Fortunately they don’t have any weapons beyond gerbil sized spears and clubs. So . . . we could shift to another continent and be the time we need this one, they will have forgotten all about the, umm, scientific examination.”

      1. I was thinking about providing information on real laws, but imaginary ones are good, too. FWIW, colonization licenses are currently imaginary.

        1. Same here but it was interesting that Dick Francis’s characters always have some problem (physical or otherwise) that they struggle with while solving the mystery.

          So the “Sick Francis” might be a play on “Dick Francis”.

    1. I read Dick Francis in my teens. It’s strange that you bring him up because I’ve been thinking of re-reading him lately. I will start with Bolt. However, my curiosity can’t wait and my teens were a while ago: how would you describe his hero “type”?

      1. Capable, virtuous men, who had both physical and moral courage. Even when they failed in some capacity, they still stubbornly insisted on doing the “right thing” as best they saw it, even if it cost them.

        1. Then that explains why I liked him. Now I’m trying to think of SF that has that type. My eyes have landed on my Destroyermen books by Taylor Anderson. I think they count.

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