Fifth Friday Open Floor

It’s the fifth Friday of the month. That means we’re taking the day off. So the floor is yours. Ask your questions. Give us ideas for posts. We’ll be checking in periodically and commenting. For now, I’m going to find more coffee and finish entering the edits on Jason F’s book (which is so very good I keep forgetting I’m supposed to edit and just read).

Oh, please don’t destroy the place. Cedar will be upset when she comes in tomorrow morning if she has to clean up. VBG.

Image by Foundry Co from Pixabay


    1. I have company coming tonight, so I’m already cleaning. If there’s some left ot do Sunday, I understand.

  1. [tromps through in muddy boots to make sure the cleaning crew has something to do]

    1. Brings in the plastic flamingos.

      Perches them about.

      Watches them come to life

      Watches them notice Reziac is making life difficult for them.

      Does not watch what happens next.

      1. Given how fast lawn flamingos can strip a T-rex to just the bones? Yeah, I wouldn’t watch, either.

  2. “Oh, please don’t destroy the place.”

    (puts down the plasma rifle, sighs)

    Okay, fine.

    1. The nuclear explosions are part of the natural beauty of the place.

        1. DON’T tempt Fluffy to come over here from Sarah’s blog.

          (Look, when the fire-breathing dragon picks the collar with FLUFFY on it out of the catalog, you nod and agree.)

  3. It might be better to just post this comment on, IIRC, Amanda’s Tuesday post.

    There’d been an interesting Kindle release that day, a Japanese light novel that I don’t really think makes sense to purchase. At least, I haven’t convinced myself yet.

    There are three elements of paranoia about the ebook purchase. a) Obviously, the IP is licensed from Japan, and the IP holder can sue in regard to sales if the licensee goes bankrupt. b) It comes from Yen Press, which is part of Hachette. Hachette’s previous shenanigans do not imply good things about what they might opt to do if they are the ones who wind up going bankrupt. c) Amazon, IIRC, has pulled ebooks before for IP reasons.

    At the given price, I’m finding myself wanting some assurance of continued availability after purchase. Because I’m figuring that my money’s worth includes rereads in the indefinite future. Obviously untrue if fussing so much takes more time than economy is worth, or if there is a path to viable back up that I am overlooking.

    There is a bunch of stuff available more cheaply, where I’m inclined to trust the non-Amazon side of the supplier, that I have not purchased yet due to trying to stick to an approximation of a budget. And I have a bunch of stuff on my Kindle for PC that I haven’t read yet, partly for time, and partly for being too depressed to continue through the difficult emotional bits.

    OTOH, stories are not purely fungible, and it is okay to read something only once.

    As for paper copies, I find myself asking if the titles are really important enough for temporary or permanent storage. On the other hand, refusing to make purchases will contribute to the high overhead suppliers going bankrupt. Which would mean stuff not being available in the future.

    I’ve found myself re arguing the proposal of trying to learn Japanese/Korean/Chinese, and getting the stuff I want to read in a language I am learning. I have enough self study that I am not organized enough in my pursuit of that it flat out does not make sense to add an unrelated difficult subject. I’m already reading at a reduced pace and range after I decided I really had to go for my current study push.

    1. What’s the light novel? DH has read quite a few through fan translations, he might be able to give you an idea of its quality (if he read it before Hatchette acquired the rights).

      1. I have a good idea of the quality, it is Alchemist Who Survived, Vol. 3, and I’ve read 1 and 2. Does a very good job of mixing an innocent main character with a fairly dark world, and very nice technical worldbuilding.

        1. I thought Yen’s excuse for why all their deadlines had slipped even more than usual this year was that Hachette had cut them loose?

          That being said, I was enjoying the fanlation of this enough I’m tempted to buy it even with Yen’s record suggesting they’re going to be the next Viz Media (i.e. Kiss of Death for everything they’ve licensed).

          1. Haven’t been following Yen Press closely enough to know.

            The official translation is nice.

  4. [dumps a couple wheel barrow loads of clean dry fresh Cedar chips on the floor]

    Absorbent, smells great, and sweeps up nicely.

  5. US law specifically allows you to make back up copies.

    The DMCA makes that difficult to do legally.

    Eh, back up your stuff. If you have to break encryption to do so, keep it to yourself.

  6. Today’s discussion seed:
    Your favorite fictional character. (And introduce us, if we’re not virtually certain to already know them.)
    Feel free to gush.

    I submit Reepicheep, the most fabulous rodent to ever buckle a swash.
    The little mouse with the big heart that held no fear.

    1. Jane Marple, just because absolutely nothing phases her. I suspect she would spend a lot of time being exasperated with me, but I would love to be friends with her.

      1. Charlie Moon from the series of contemporary detective novels by James Doss. I think Charlie is the only fictional detective that I would be happy to just ‘hang out’ with. Holmes or Wimsey would be too intimidating; the ‘hard-boiled’ would be too hard boiled.

    2. There are several, but one of the first to come to mind is Keith Stewart, the protagonist of Nevil Shute’s “Trustee from the Toolroom”. A quiet, gentle man who damn well takes his trusted duty seriously. If you haven’t read the book, I wholeheartedly recommend it.

      1. Shute write a number of fine novels. On the Beach, his only stf, is not one of them. I chanced on Trustee many years ago and often recommend it for washing the taste of OtB from your figurative mouth.

    3. I have a lot of favorite characters. One of them is Wen Spencer’s Ukiah Oregon. And while I do think she sort of wrote herself into a corner, sort of, Ukaih’s introduction in Alien Taste is pretty awesome.

      I wouldn’t advise reading the reviews though because I think it would be harmed by knowing what’s coming and some people who leave reviews do their best to give a freaking synopsis. It does sort of go off the weird edge.

    4. Pinkhus Ghort, of Glen Cook vintage. Favorties vary from day to day (and minute to minute, betimes).

      From this worthy, no protagonist, he, I learned the phrase “You can’t fix stupid.” Which I have been cheerfully stealing ever since…

  7. I’ve just started working in Open Office, after a lifetime (well, since I bought my first PC, back in the dark ages) of MS Word.

    Are there any known problems when going to publish on KDP?

      1. I don’t use either Open or Libre enough to get into the technical goodness of either. I did switch to Libre Office a few years back as I was trying to distance myself from Oracle Corp. but since then Oracle gave Open Office to the Apache Foundation so that reason to switch is gone.

        This is the most recent comparison I could find and picking one or the other looks like it comes down to a few minor things. Pam’s question of KDP compatibility goodness is an excellent one.

        Amanda mentioned the same under ‘Writing’ here.

        There are a few posts at the KDP community site if you search for Libre or Open Office that sound promising but Amanda’s post above is mre informative.

    1. Check for formatting artifacts. I had some issues with Open Office templates un-templating in the middle of paragraphs after many saves. Paragraph switches from Time Roman with first line 1/2″ indent to Courier and no indent, things like that.

    2. Last time I used OpenOffice it hadn’t been updated in something like 5 years and couldn’t do .docx format.

      I haven’t tried loading an .odt file to KDP, but D2D had trouble with the image files (maps) I’d put in the last appendix. And keep in mind that page styles work completely differently between MS Word and Libre/Open Office.

    1. Finding a good group is difficult, and it’s worth the effort because a bad group can be very bad indeed – to the point of abusive. It does take some time, as you want a group who understands your genre (I watched a friend struggle with this recently, as the group was purely mundane and couldn’t understand the desire to write SF ‘just set it on Earth’) and who is willing to put in an equal amount of work. Online is perhaps the only way to find enough Odds who click with you in just the right way, but don’t be afraid to leave a group that isn’t working for you.

      That being said, I no longer belong to a direct ‘critique’ group. I run (for values of stand back and occasionally give it nudges) a group of writers/creative supporting one another. But it’s not about sharing chapters, just getting through life without losing what makes us, us. Sharing work happens, but in a casual ‘hey, could you look at this?’ way.

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