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[links] Link salad knows there will be peace when it is done

The Acts of Whimsy cancer fundraiser is still live. It has made goal, but additional support is always welcome, especially given my new complications. Please check it out if you have not done so yet.

The Lakeside Kickstarter has expanded its stretch goals to include documenting the science around my genomic testing by traveling to the testing lab and interviewing the scientists there. They’v also posted a new trailer for the movie, which is very striking. So give a little to support SCIENCE!

An Act of Whimsy video from @ eustaciavye77 — She sings a silly SJ Tucker song.

Lorem Ipsum Transition FundraiserOur doors will close forever. Eviction day is coming. The story doesn’t have to end this way. Here’s what you can do right now to save the bookstore.

A review of Dark Faith: Invocations which includes a special focus on my story, “The Cancer Catechism” — I’m not often moved by reviews of my own work, but this one… Wow.

GIVEAWAY: Win a Complete Set of Jay Lake’s “GREEN” Trilogy! — My friends at SF Signal celebrate the release of KalimpuraPowell’s | BN ].

Carry on My Wayward Son (Trombone Quartet) — My teen years suddenly seem so different.

The material that’s like an octopusWhen pressure is applied all around them most materials shrink. But materials exhibiting a rare property known as negative linear compressibility (NLC) are different. (Via Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Tapeworm eggs found in fossilized poop — Man, I want a coprolith to go with my trilobites!

Carrots for Doctors — A New York Times piece on medical incentives that touches on but then sidesteps the real issue in healthcare costs: profit-taking throughout our healthcare finance system. Countries with single-payer systems take less profit and pay lower costs, a double win.

Climate change may be hitting migratory species harder than we thoughtCurrent methods don’t consider the whole picture when calculating risk. Actually, it’s just Al Gore out hunting them to help keep the hoax going. Ask any Republican, they’ll tell you those liberal “facts” and “data” about climate change can’t possibly be true.

Idaho gun-nut lawmakers freak out over man with gun in state Capitol (irony alert) — But guns make us safer! Just ask the 80 people killed every day by them!

1 dead in Phoenix office shooting; shooter at large — See how much safer those people are because of widespread private gun ownership. The NRA and the GOP, still protecting the Second Amendment rights of angry, impulsive people everywhere to kill at a whim, as should always be in the case in a just, safe and moral society.

Gabby Giffords made me cry. America? And you? — Roger Ebert on gun control.

Moral Perversity In David Mamet — Andrew Sullivan on David Mamet’s recent bizarre and counterfactual piece on gun violence. I read the Mamet piece when it came out, and couldn’t even begin to frame a response to its ghastly amoral stance.

African-American Travel and Jim Crow Segregation — I’ve heard of the Green Book before. A sobering reminder of white privilege and racism.

Can Republicans “Disengage” from Obama?Because many Republicans and conservatives assumed the worst about what would follow Obama’s re-election (this was the “Obama unleashed” idea), they are going to be more inclined to try “winning a series of confrontations with the president” rather than less. The other problem is that many Republicans are likely to continue reacting to Obama’s re-election as they did to Clinton’s, which was a combination of disbelief that he had won and an increased obsession with “getting” him by way of investigations and scandals.

QotD?: Do you cry no more?


1/31/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (still in post-operative recovery)
Hours slept: 8.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (still in post-operative recovery)
Weight: 224.4
Number of FEMA troops on my block protecting women from violence: 0
Currently reading: Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett

[books] Kalimpura reading

Health permitting, I’ll be reading from KalimpuraPowell’s | BN ] on Friday, March 8th, at the Powell’s Cedar Hills location. This will be my one and only formal public event for the book due to my continued battle with cancer.

As is usual, I’ll have an open dinner from 5 pm to 6:30 pm, at McMenamins Cedar Hills, at the north end of the same retail complex Powell’s is in. If you’re planning to come to the dinner, please do let me know in comments or via email so I can include you in the headcount.

Due to chemotherapy, I’ve cancelled all my other convention and workshop appearances through this summer (at least), so if you want to see me on the hoof and Hawaiian clad, this is your only chance. Hope to see you there.

[cancer] Field notes from Cancerland, post-operative edition

Next Steps

Yes, I am home and in reasonably good order. Today I’ll be scheduling post-operative followups with both my surgical oncologist and my medical oncologist. The unexpected discovery of new tumors in my thoracic diaphragm and my lesser omentum have significantly complicated the planned course of post-operative treatment. Plus at some point they have take these thirty-two staples out of my belly. I’ll comment more on the post-operative issues when I’ve had more time to think, and when additional data becomes available.

Genetic Sequencing of My Tumor Tissue

The samples went off to the testing lab. Thank you again to everyone who contributed to the Acts of Whimsy fundraiser to make this possible. Thanks to the unexpected findings in surgery, things are probably going to get even more expensive than anticipated, so the overage will go to very good use. Meanwhile, we expect the lab report back around February 10th or so. Now working on getting the interpretation lined up.

Why the Surgery Went the Way It Did

As I said yesterday, My surgical oncologist’s initial comment to me on that was, “What we’re supposed to do when we open you up and find unexpected tumors is just close you back up. I knew that wasn’t the right answer for you.” Several folks wondered about that. Here’s what I understand: I think it’s because the assumption is that if there’s additional undetected metastasis which wasn’t accounted for in the surgical plan, disturbing those met tumors without sufficient knowledge of their extent could cause more harm than good. Anyone reading here who’s a clinician is invited to correct or expand upon that in comments.

My Own State of Mind

I got nothing. Last Tuesday I went under anesthesia thinking I had three liver tumors and probably a fourth. I came out of anesthesia to be told I had additional tumors in two other sites within my body. All were excised or ablated. I am baffled, unhappy, terrified, hopeful, loved and beloved, afraid, confused and a whole lot of other things, all at once. I have barely begun to sort out my feelings, and we are a ways from having a decent go-forward plan. Everyone around me is working very hard to help me, and each other, cope with this, as we seek to understand.

Why This is So Confusing

Bluntly, I’ve lived too long. Most people in my cancer cohort are either cured or dead after five years. At four years and ten months of living with Stage IV metastatic colon cancer, I am neither. My disease progression has almost outlived the available clinical data and best practices. This means it’s not clear either what to expect next or what to do about it. This also means we’re pinning a lot of hope on the genomic sequencing of my tumor tissues. Maybe there are answers yet. In the mean time, I continue to be a walking, talking science experiment. Which at least has its own cool factor, because SCIENCE!

Good Things That Have Happened

While I’ve been so incapacitated this past week, my author copies of KalimpuraPowells | BN ] showed up. The book is officially released this coming Thursday. I also learned that my short story “The Cancer Catechism” has made the preliminary ballot for the Stoker Awards. I think that’s a first for me. And the Cthulhu short I wrote right before surgery has been accepted by the requesting market with only minor editorial changes requested. So, go me!

Meanwhile, I am off work all week laying low and recuperating at home. Be well, and I shall essay to do the same.

[links] Link salad slowly comes back online

The Acts of Whimsy cancer fundraiser and the Lakeside Kickstarter for the documentary about me, [info]the_child, and cancer are still live. Both have made goal, but additional support is always welcome. Please check them out if you have not done so yet.

How to Write Like My Dad[info]the_child‘s Act of Whimsy.

Bryan Thomas Sxhmidt with a take on Kalimpura

Featured Author Review: Kalimpura by Jay Lake

Saturday salmagundi — In which I am somewhat hilariously mentioned.

Timeline of the One Ring — Mmm. Filthy hobbitses. (Snurched from Andrew Wheeler.)

Scientists Build A Working Tractor Beam

Chinese Physicists Build “Ghost” Cloaking DeviceA working invisibility cloak that makes one object look like ghostly versions of another has been built in China.

Drill reaches Antarctica’s under-ice Lake Whillans

Dung Beetle Uses The Milky Way For Navigation, First Animal Found To Do So — I’d be more impressed if it was the other way around.

Nature Has A Formula That Tells Us When It’s Time To Die — This is fascinating.

The Happiness MachineHow Google became such a great place to work.

Why You Truly Never Leave High SchoolNew science on its corrosive, traumatizing effects.

The Preppers Next Door — Antisocial lunacy comes in many forms.

Feds: ‘Monsignor Meth’ dealt drug, bought sex shop — Really, how can atheists possibly have ethics or morals without religious guidance?

Mali rebels fleeing Timbuktu burn library full of ancient manuscriptsTown’s mayor says Islamist insurgents torched two buildings containing priceless books as French-led troops approached. I do not understand why people think religious values make for good government and society. Religious values just burned one of the most precious ancient libraries in the world. Religious values destroyed the Buddhas of Bamiyan. There’s a lot of reasons I’m an atheist, and these are some of them.

Why I Don’t Own A GunUltimately I choose to live without guns because, a) I don’t hunt, b) I’m not a police officer, c) I choose to live gently in a violent world. I choose not to help swell the ranks of the armed in our society. I want to contribute to a more peaceable and gentle society. Does that mean I’m unsafe? No, I don’t think so. But if I am unsafe, well, then I choose to be unsafe. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Growing Up With Roe: How a Trip to the Eye Doctor Created a Lifelong Advocate for Reproductive Rights — (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Texas, where science and history have become ideological battlegroundsPBS will show the story of the Texas State School Board’s assault on facts. This conservative assault on those liberal “facts” and “data” has been going on pretty much all my life, with little response from the reality-based community.

Jindal, courage is not enough — Good luck shedding that “stupid party” label, GOP. Until you stop trying to generate more angry white men as your basic electoral strategy, you’ve painted yourself into that corner.

Why the GOP Could Be in the Wilderness For a Long Time

QotD?: Did you miss me?


1/28/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (still in post-operative recovery)
Hours slept: 8.0 hours (fitful)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (post-operative recovery)
Weight: n/a (forgot)
Number of FEMA troops on my block enforcing disability rights: 0
Currently reading: The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks

[cancer] Surgery today

There’s a place I go right before surgery, in a mental and emotional sense. I become very hard and internal. Not mean or snappish or unloving. Just… focused. I’ve been there since yesterday. Drawing into my body, as it were, and concentrating on what is to come.

Nonetheless, [info]the_child and I managed to have a couple of productive conversations last night about my illness, my prognosis and my mortality. She also spent some time with Lisa Costello and with Mother of the Child. Processing, we’re all processing constantly.

Meanwhile, it is today, and I’m off to the hospital shortly. 6 am check-in time for morning surgery. I probably won’t even go into prep before 7 am, then likely be in the operating room five to seven hours. Recovery sometime this afternoon, then ICU for at least 24 hours.

A few details about the surgery for new or recent readers:

  • This is my fifth major surgery since 2008, all in pursuit of cancer. That includes a colon resection, a lung resection, and two liver resections prior to this, my third liver resection.
  • As a side note, I’ve also had three day surgeries and two very minor outpatient surgeries in connection with this process. All of those were about placing chemo access ports in my chest and removing them again.
  • Today’s surgery has four primary goals:

    First is to resect or radiofrequency ablate all three of my known, existing tumors. This will return me to No Evidence of Disease (NED) status. NED is not a cure, or even a remission, it just means I have no detectable tumors.

    Second is to inspect the site of my fourth, suspected tumor which emerged during last fall’s chemo course. The determination of what that site actually represents may cause a change in my spring chemo course.

    Third is to inspect the rest of my liver for any areas of damage or emergent metastatic disease that may not have been in evidence on the scans.

    Fourth is to secure sufficient tissue samples for whole genome sequencing of my tumor.

It will be a few days before I am meaningfully lucid. I’ll be in the hospital likely through Saturday at least, then recovering at home for a while. Lisa Costello has the keys to both the LiveJournal and WordPress instances of my blog, and she will be posting updates as her time and mental energy permit. I shouldn’t expect any resumption of blogging on my part until the weekend at the earliest, and possibly not until next week.

People often ask what they can do to help me. Good thoughts and prayers (depending on your orientation) are always welcome. Here’s several other possibilities:

Regular wit and erudition shall return.

[cancer] Field notes from cancerland, surgical edition

This and that…

The Acts of Whimsy Fundraiser

Thanks to your incredible generosity, we’ve added some more unlock stretch goals to the Acts of Whimsy Fundraiser:

  • $42,000 — NY Times Best-selling author Steven Gould will run for SFWA president!
  • $44,000 — Video, “How to Write Like My Dad” by Bronwyn Lake (a/k/a [info]the_child)
  • $46,000 — Klingon language expert Lawrence Schoen will present Five Pick-Up Lines Used in Federations Bars by Klingons
  • $50,000 — A delicious surprise!

And yes, I do know what the delicious surprise is. It will be pretty awesome, I can assure you. And it was [info]the_child‘s idea, so she’s in a sense responsible for two of these stretch goals.

Personal Stress

Some folks contacted me privately after yesterday’s post entitled “Hope and Despair” [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ]. A lot more expressed both concern and support publicly in comments. Rest assured, I am not going off the rails. I was talking about my experience, not expressing a desperate cry for help. I am receiving both good therapy, and excellent support from family and friends. The big issues in my life are soul-crushing, but I still live day to day in (mostly) good cheer, love and personal fulfillment.

Surgery Next Week

Next Tuesday, I am having my liver resected for the third time. This will be my fifth major cancer surgery. (There have also been five minor surgeries, repeatedly inserting and extracting my chest port.) That means, among other things, that the blogs will be dark for a while, with the possible exception of occasional status updates by Lisa Costello.

Also, I am seeing my surgical oncologist today. We’ll be exploring some of the issues around the apparent emergence of Ashcroft (tumor #4), and how that affects the surgical plan, as well as treatment expectations going forward. I should be commenting on this here on the blogs tomorrow.

The release of Kalimpura, the third Green novel

In one of those bizarre coincidences that wouldn’t work if you wrote it into a story, Kalimpura releases two weeks from yesterday, Tuesday, January 29th, a week after my surgery while I’m flat on my back at home in bed recovering, and thus unable to do even local promotion at Powell’s and elsewhere. Part of the irony is that the paperback release of Mainspring occurred the day I went into the Emergency Room with my initial cancer presentation back in 2008. Apparently my careers as a professional writer and as a professional cancer patient are intertwined.

One way to support me is of course to donate to the Acts of Whimsy Fundraiser. Another way, which is better for my other career, is to buy a copy of Kalimpura. Though it reasonably stands alone as a novel, if you haven’t enjoyed Green or Endurance, feel free to take a read of them. Audible.com also has a terrific set of audiobooks for the series.

If you want to purchase Kalimpura today, here are some links: [ Powells | BN ]

[links] Link salad saw that she had such a pretty face

Publishers Weekly reviews Kalimpura — A largely positive review, but sadly no star for me this time.

Haldeman’s Marvelous Forever Warriors — Ta-Nehisi Coates on Joe Haldeman’s classic.

Secret Space Plane Set to Launch on Mystery Mission Today

26 Amazing Facts About Finland’s Unorthodox Education System — Almost all the student and classroom oriented assertions in this piece are also true of [info]the_child‘s Waldorf school, and of Waldorf schools in general.

Origin of intelligence, mental illness linked to ancient genetic accident — I want to know more about those mice using touchscreen computers. (Snurched from [info]deborahjross.)

The contract between science and society, plus a possible new RenaissanceGenomics may accomplish a lot, but could it redefine humanity’s view of itself?

Yale scientists name Obamadon, a slender-jawed lizard, after the President — Rawr!

Mayan apocalypse: panic spreads as December 21 nears — Because people are stupid. This is dumber than believing in the lottery or supply side economics. At the least lottery entertains, and supply side economics is a feel-good fairy tale for low-wattage ideologues. I’m not sure what anyone gets out of faux-Mayan apocalypticism.

When is a religion not a religion?O’Reilly and Staver are both trying to justify Christian privilege. They want the free exercise clause of the First Amendment to apply to Christianity, and exclusively to Christianity (and maybe Jews, too, if they behave). And they want the no establishment clause of the First Amendment to apply to every religion except for Christianity.

‘Like lesser Americans’: Atheists face discrimination, persecution, report saysIn at least seven U.S. states, constitutional provisions are in place that bar atheists from public office and one state, Arkansas, has a law that bars atheists from testifying as witnesses at trials, the report said. It’s much worse elsewhere in the world. But every time I see one of those polls that atheists are the least trusted group, or hear some Christianist conservative talking about how morality cannot exist without religion, I remember that Hitler and Pol Pot were Christians. And yes, I just Godwinned myself. (Via [info]shsilver.)

Scalia Defends Anti-Gay Quotes — In which his arrant conservative bigotry is laid plain. Again. And this man sits on the Supreme Court. Evaluating Justice Scalia on the plain face of his own words on this subject, he doesn’t have the moral character, intellect, compassion or discernment to qualify as a dog catcher. So much for impartial justice. Or any justice at all, really.

Poll: Colbert The Most Popular Choice To Replace Outgoing Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) — Do people not get the joke? Colbert in character (and he always seems to be in character) is Poe’s Law on the hoof.

How to Raise a Little Liberal or ConservativeIn short, authoritarian parents are more prone to produce conservatives, while those who gave their kids more latitude are more likely to produce liberals. This strikes me as painfully obvious, but I suppose the news is that there’s evidence for the assertion.

Democrats and Republicans belong to different groups — (I think I got this from Fragano Ledgister, but I lost the source.)

How the Mainstream Press Bungled the Single Biggest Story of the 2012 Campaign[C]ampaign coverage in 2012 was a particularly calamitous failure, almost entirely missing the single biggest story of the race: Namely, the radical right-wing, off-the-rails lurch of the Republican Party, both in terms of its agenda and its relationship to the truth. Romney and the GOP lied knowingly, constantly, and unapologetically. They bragged about it. And they nearly succeeded with that strategy, displaying unambiguously the miserable public character of both Money Boo Boo his own self and the conservative movement as a whole. But the American Right is so worked up about Kenyan Muslim socialism that they neither noticed nor cared about the utter failure of their own leadership.

?otD: Did God in His mercy lend her grace?


12/11/2012
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 9.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours stationary bike ride
Weight: 216.4
Number of FEMA troops on my block enforcing international law and Kenyan Muslim socialism: 0
Currently reading: The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks

[links] Link salad is an advertising victim

Kalimpura gets Klausnered — Go, me!

All yours… until your credit card expires: Barnes & Noble ‘stops customers accessing ebooks they’ve already paid for’ — Nice move, Barnes and Noble. You’ve lowered yourself to Amazon.com’s level of predatory business practices. (Via [info]corwynofamber.)

Steampunk Keyboard — (Via [info]willyumtx.)

Preaching the incontrovertible to the unconvertibleLanguage Log revisits an old bogeyman, the spurious that/which distinction so beloved of copy editors.

“Homicide Victims Rarely Talk to Police,” and Other Horrible Headlines

cancer. canceling. postponing. waiting. growing. — Amanda Palmer on the hard choices of cancer in the lives of people around you. In case you somehow missed this. (Via Lisa Costello among others.)

Genetic Sequencing Traces Romani Back to Ancient Indian Origin — The original headline could use some work, though the article is more nuanced. Also, note the first comment under the piece. (Via David Goldman.)

Cold case cops find new DNA strategyA cold case detective working to identify eight bodies found in John Wayne Gacy’s home in 1978 developed a new way to find other possible victims of Chicago’s most notorious serial killer. Ah, the majesty of the law. (Via Lisa Costello.)

The catfish that strands itself to kill pigeons — (Via Steve Buchheit.)

You don’t have to be local — I’m not very good at being local, but I do split my energy. (Via David Goldman.)

One Month Later: 30 Post-Election Rebuilding Tips From Republicans — I’ll bet good money the GOP swiftly returns to generating angry white men as their core electoral strategy. To do anything else would require the GOP to confront the huge number of issues about which it has been dreadfully wrong, and the modern conservative movement is clearly incapable of that degree of introspection.

Evangelicals vs. Persons With Disabilities: The real dangers of fighting against imaginary monstersThis vote also harms America’s leadership, influence and reputation in the world. It makes America look ignorant, petty and spiteful. It makes us look that way because 38 Republican senators caused America to be ignorant, petty and spiteful. And this ugly, harmful stupidity is all based on fantasy — based on nothing more than evangelicals’ preoccupation with pretending that they’re waging a heroic battle against Satanic baby-killer abortionists and against the one-world government of the Antichrist. How is that different from almost every other conservative position these days?

?otD: Got milk?


12/7/2012
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 8.5 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours stationary bike ride
Weight: 217.4
Number of FEMA troops on my block teaching evolution to children and redistributing wealth: 0
Currently reading: The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks

[links] Link salad dances by the laser light

Goodreads First Reads: Kalimpura by Jay Lake

Is This Grade School a ‘Cult’? (And Do Parents Care?)The Atlantic on Waldorf schools. [info]the_child has attended one since she was three and a half. (Via [info]tillyjane, a/k/a my mom.)

Crystals… made of timePhysicists: “Ignore the infinities and try this.” Universe: “Not likely.”

Teen bank robber from Nebraska brags about crime on YouTube videoThe self-described ‘Chick bank robber’ flashed her stolen loot on video – now she faces time behind bars. Welcome to crime in the age of social media. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

Senate Republicans Block Ratification Of U.N. Treaty On Rights For The Disabled, Citing Impact On Home-Schoolers — Stay classy, conservative America. It’s what you do best.

Congressman’s Restaurant Refused To Serve Muslim Couple — More class from Sarah Palin’s “real Americans”.

I think an awful lot of what passes for political discourse in this country these days works off that principle: There’s money in making stupid people mad. — Votes, too. Hence the perennial GOP electoral strategy of generating angry white men. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

FoxNews.com Columnist Attacks Bob Costas For Correctly Drawing Connection Between Guns And Murder — From the “la-la-la-la, I can’t hear you” school of the obvious about the relationship between guns and violence. Why is the Second Amendment’s guarantees of freely available instruments of murder so absolutely sacred to conservatives while the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious freedom gets constantly shredded by the very same people? Compensating much?

Anonymous, Karl Rove and 2012 Election Fix? — Did Karl Rove’s hack get hacked? A question I myself have asked. It would explain a lot about the last-minute expectations of the Romney campaign.

GOP’s McCain, Graham, Collins used same language as Rice to describe Benghazi attackBoth Rice and the Senators used the term “mob” to describe those who perpetrated the attack on our consulate and CIA station in Libya. None of them referred to terrorists, or Al Qaeda. Yet the Senators are now faulting Rice for not referring to Al Qaeda when the Senators themselves did not refer to Al Qaeda. More of that justly famed principled intellectual consistency from the American Right, I see.

In Search of a Gatekeeper. It eludes Welch that one of the long-term failings of the conservative movement has been its tendency to condemn former allies that it no longer found useful. As a political movement, it has been increasingly interested in heresy-hunting and not all that interested in persuasion in recent years. Perhaps that is in the nature of any political movement, but it has afflicted the conservative movement very much in the last two decades. Each purge simply makes the conservative movement and the Republican Party increasingly rigid, unimaginative, and oblivious to the world around it.

Republicans not handling election results well49% of GOP voters nationally say they think that ACORN stole the election for President Obama. We found that 52% of Republicans thought that ACORN stole the 2008 election for Obama, so this is a modest decline, but perhaps smaller than might have been expected given that ACORN doesn’t exist anymore. Yep, those finely honed minds on the American right.

?otD: Did I miss ruby Tuesday?


12/5/2012
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 9.0 hours (8.0 hours extremely fitful plus napping)
Body movement: 0.5 hours stationary bike ride
Weight: 219.0
Number of FEMA troops on my block teaching evolution to children and redistributing wealth: 0
Currently reading: The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks

[links] Link salad wakes up in time to go to work

Green and Kalimpura Sweepstakes!Tor.com celebrates my forthcoming book release.

An ABC proof too tough even for mathematiciansIn Kyoto, a solitary thinker unveils a solution that’s either a dizzying advance — or a blind alley. Outsiders in? (Snurched from Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

A Shape-Shifting Smartphone Touch ScreenA microfluidic panel lets users push buttons on a flat interface.

Riverbeds in Reverse — Inverted riverbeds? Wow. That’s as weird as some of the Missoula Flood topology.

New age of exploration in the hunt for extreme life

Doha: fighting climate change best hope for UK economyFighting global warming by selling renewable energy like wind turbines to the rest of the world is the best chance for Britain to grow economically, according to Greg Barker, the Energy and Climate Change Minister. In other words, economic opportunity, not ideological freak out.

Is Yahweh a Boy?The Concept of the J Text Deity in Genesis. (Via [info]ulfhirtha by request of [info]zxhrue.)

Court Denies Atheists Right to Choose How to Get Married — More of that modern persecution of by the Christians.

Fracking industry refusing to report which chemicals they’re using — Confidential to GOP in America: Tell me again why industry self-regulation is superior to Federal regulation? Or do you plan to stop drinking water for the rest of your life?

Are Independents More Immune to Bias Than Liberals or Conservatives? — What this doesn’t address is whether the bias is acknowledged or compensated for. There really isn’t any equivalent phenomenon on the American “left” to the Right’s extremely well-documented epistemic closure. When your one of your core biases is in favor of examining new concepts and questioning assumptions, speaking as a liberal-progressive it’s hard not to see that as a subjectively more useful bias than one in favor of reflexively rejecting evidence over ideology and always embracing the Argument from Authority.

Republicans, welcome to the reality-based communityDefeat has shattered the US right’s impenetrable front on tax and healthcare. The party’s pragmatists are finding their voice. A Uk perspective on the conservative disaster of epistemic closure. (Or, in simpler terms, GOP idiocy.)

?otD: Mooch much?


12/4/2012
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 11.0 hours (9 hours fitful plus napping)
Body movement: 0.5 hours stationary bike ride
Weight: 219.0
Number of FEMA troops on my block teaching evolution to children and redistributing wealth: 0
Currently reading: The Rhesus Chart by Charlie Stross

[contests] Kalimpura Caption Contest Winners

A while back, I announced a Kalimpura caption contest [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ]. Unfortunately, chemo brain got in the way and I have been quite dilatory in wrapping up the voting poll.

Consider it now wrapped:

Kalimpura Caption Contest Voting Poll Screen Shot

And the winners are J.R. Murdock and emeraldcite, in a tie. The winning captions are:

IMG_3890

J.R. Murdock: Not content with Google Glasses, Jay went for the Google Bodysuit.
emeraldcite: Fifty Shades of Jay.

Our two lucky winners will receive signed copies of the Kalimpura ARC. Guys, please contact me with your postal addresses.


Photo: Jay masked and pearled, © 2012, Emily Siskin. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

[writing] Pleasing progress on several fronts

An unexpected foreign rights check in the mail this week, as well as an expected-but-no-idea-when contract and a hoped-for-but-unexpected contract. This business is so weird. I made more writing money in three days than I’ve made in months. In order, Mainspring earned out in Germany in its first reporting period (or first year, I’m actually not completely clear on this) and paid a decent royalty besides, I got the METAtropolis: Green Space contract, and the Green novelette I just wrote, “A Stranger Comes to Kalimpura”, was accepted. I’ll formally announce the market for that acceptance when the editor blesses me to do so.

Pleased writer is pleased.

Speaking of METAtropolis: Green Space, yesterday I wrote 2,800 more words on “Rock of Ages” yesterday, to 14,000 words. I’d originally estimated this at 15-18,000 words, but the shape of the plot is heading more to 20-24,000 words. It’s unusual for me to be this uncertain of length, but some of my best work has come out this way, so I’m not going to complain.

I’m glad to have been writing. Chemo will shut me down today, and I won’t write again for at least a week, maybe longer. I really hope to finish this novella in my next cycle, because I’m not too far from the long-term dissolution of my writing brain as a chemo side effect. Once that grinds to a halt, based on prior experience, I won’t lay down new wordage until May or June of next year.

Some WIP:

He wound up seated – with a strap to keep him there against microgravity – in a semicircle of chairs facing a large virteo monitor in a small and otherwise featureless room. The woman who’d met him was there, along with a hard-bitten, whipcord thin Asian man who could almost have been Bashar’s age, and a much younger and doughier man with pink eyes and brittle hair who seemed to be suffering from a metabolic disorder.

“I’m Cherie,” said his host. “That’s Lu,” she pointed at the Asian man, “and Bibendum.”

“I’m Credence,” Bashar said. It was the name he’d used to get into Schaadt’s Shack, and thus – at least in a sense – was a verifiable identity. These people might be strangely naïve about physical security, but he’d bet every Euro he’d ever had that they were at the razor’s edge on data security.

“Where’s Feeney?”

“Dead.” His voice freighted with the conviction of a truly bald-faced lie, Bashar went on. “Killed in a dope grower’s cross-fire two days ago. I knew he had the meet up at Schaadt’s Shack, and so I went to keep it.”

“Hmm.” She glanced at Lu and Bibendum, then back at Bashar. “You got the maps?”

“Depends. Which maps do you need?”

“We can handle the blast distribution and hydrological calculations. We need the locations.”