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[links] Link salad didn’t know you were looking for more than it could ever be

“Hemingway” on Hemingway — Who the hell would use an app to evaluate their writing quality?

1966 Batman Valentines — Hahaha.

Compulsory Coupling: Fit In By Finding Someone — Yeah, this.

Snow Bird: 1922 — Some photographs defy explanation.

Austin’s Moon Towers, Beyond ‘Dazed and Confused’ — I lived in Austin 18 years, almost all of them in the old part of town where these towers still stand.

Frozen Venice – in pictures — (Via Lisa Costello.)

Bobsleds in ManhattanWhy NYC Should Host The Winter Olympics. Hahahah.
Global Geologic Map of Ganymede — In case you need one.

A little ass music: Hieronymus Bosch’s 500-year-old butt song from hell — This is so weird. (Via Lisa Costello.)

248-Million-Year-Old Fossil Shows Oldest Reptile Live Birth, Chaohusaurus Was Born ‘Head First’

The Rise of the Crazy Ants — Fire ants were bad enough. Now this? (Via David Goldman.)

The French way of cancer treatment[T]he French system is basically like an expanded Medicaid. Pretty much everyone has insurance, it explained, and the French get better primary care and more choice of doctors than we do. It also turns out, as has been much commented on, that despite all this great treatment, the French spend far less on healthcare than Americans. But Socialism is evil! No matter that people live longer, with better quality of life, for less cost. (Snurched from Alexander Unwyn Cherry.)

Cartoon: The truth about numbers: Bible Math! — Snerk. The dangers of literalism.

Kansas’ Anti-Gay Segregation Bill Is an Abomination — Wow. It’s very, very hard for me to read about something like this and not reach some very harsh negative conclusions about the intelligence, morality and basic human decency of American conservatives. (Via John Sapienza.)

Herpin: ‘A good thing’ that James Holmes had 100-round magazineRepublican state Sen. Bernie Herpin raised the ire of an Aurora theater shooting victim’s father when he claimed that it might have been “a good thing” that gunman James Holmes had a 100-round magazine when he opened fire and, ultimately, killed 12 people. I cannot even bring myself to snark about this.

Schofield man who advocated for open carry jailed, accused of making gun threats — Because guns make us all safer, and every American who carries deadly force can absolutely be relied upon to use that threat of deadly force wisely under all circumstances.

Doctors: Abortion laws carry riskEven those who oppose abortion say that before giving their best medical advice, they may need to call a lawyer. All in accordance with that bedrock conservative principle of not letting the government come between you and your doctor.

[Conservative activist] Brent Bozell urges liberal media to ‘tell the truth,’ while he fibs about writing a column — “Forced ghostwriting”?

Sen. Bob Corker can’t stand the United Auto Workers: An annotated interview — I wish more journalists would do this when interviewing politicians: annotate the lies and misrepresentations. (Snurched from John Sapienza.)

[New York Republican state legislator] Thomas Barraga: No one ‘should ever ride a bicycle’ in Suffolk County — Because freedom, I guess.

?otD: Do you have to stay?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 9.5 hours (mostly solid)
Body movement: 20 minutes stationary bike (resuming exercise post-operative)
Weight: n/a (traveling)
Number of FEMA troops on my block who aren’t descended from monkeys: 0
Currently reading: n/a

[personal] Miscellaneous miscellany

Yesterday was a long, good day. Day Jobbery went well, even better than normal. We had a terrific Open Dinner here in Austin, with @dratz, @itsaJuliasaurus (a/k/a Mrs. @dratz), [info]stillsostrange, @StevenBrust, Skyler White, D—, old Austin Slug Tribe friends Jn4 and CH, [info]jess_ka, E—, [info]sophielandon and Mr. [info]sophielandon. I got to talk with everyone but E—, to whom I regretfully didn’t even manage to say good-bye.

Afterwards, we rolled back to chez @dratz where I wound up interviewing @StevenBrust and Skyler White on camera.

Jay Lake interviewing Steven Brust and Skyler White

This was a cold interview, from my perspective, in that I hadn’t known I’d be conducting it until about a minute before the interview started, and I’d done none of my usual interview preparation. Nonetheless, Steve and Skyler were gracious and cooperative interview subjects. Oddly, I went to bed feeling a bad attack of imposter syndrome post-interview. That’s mostly a measure of how tired I was, given my usual bullet-resistant writerly ego.

Now I’m heading back to Portland, rather underslept and feeling more than a bit behind on my writing. The latter is not in fact true, this is just my psychotically persistent writerself talking, so I’ll be fine. After lunch with [info]mlerules, I’ll be working Day Jobbery this afternoon, then photographing [info]the_child‘s lacrosse team, and spending the evening with her. More Day Jobbery tomorrow and (hopefully) lunch with [info]kenscholes. Then off to Detroit on Thursday.

I do owe a couple of blog posts, time and mental focus permitting. Among other things, I want to document last Saturday’s cheesefest at Paradise Lost II.

Also of note, a dream from a couple of nights ago. I was watching television (in my dream). It was a nature documentary about a family of manta rays that had adopted a kitten. That was all very sweet and adorbz until at one point in the documentary, the manta rays turned on their kitten. As they began slashing at the animal, taking bites out of it, I felt the stinging, tearing pain of each bite in my body. I got wrapped up in wondering how the documentary crew had managed to capture then broadcast the pain to me, the viewer. Interpretation of the meaning of this dream is left as an exercise for the reader.

At any rate, I’m off. Be well.

Photo © 2012 Donnie Reynolds and Waterloo Productions. All rights reserved. Reproduced with permission.

[conventions] Wrap up on Paradise Lost II, my week ahead

Paradise Lost II went well, my personal epiphanies aside. The conference ran well, critique was solid, and I enjoyed talks by John Joseph Adams and Steven Brust. We had a lovely cheese fest on Saturday, and a really terrific dinner Saturday night that included deep fried beets and a drop-in from my cousin N—. Park ranger stories were told, among other things.

We drove back to Austin from San Antonio yesterday. Thanks to the location of the FBI office there, as well as some trafficmancy by @Madge707, it took us three hours to get from downtown San Antonio to chez @dratz in Central Austin. Dinner with my Aunt V— ensured shortly thereafter at Hut’s Hamburgers. We wound up the evening with a rousing game of Gloom, and some talk time.

There may be photoblogging of the cheese, et cetera, later, but the photos are in @dratz‘s camera, so I don’t have them yet.

Today I am working Day Jobbery here in Austin, followed by tonight’s Open Dinner. Off to Portland tomorrow where I will see [info]the_child for the first time in a week. Thursday I skive out of town again for World Steam Expo in Dearborn, MI.

More to come, as time and blog space permit. See some, all or none of you here and there about the country.

[travel|photos] In which I go to Texas, eat cheese, and encounter cat puke

I flew to Austin yesterday in order to embark on my weekend at Paradise Lost. Set out quite early in the morning, slept a couple of hours on the plane, then wrapped the Kalimpura copy edits. (Regarding which I also exchanged several very interesting emails with my copy editor, who has given me permission to edit them into a blog post to follow up on my recent comments about copy editing and manuals of style. Watch this space.) I also spent some time talking to a young man on his way to Fort Sill for Army basic, followed by AIT as an artillery radar control operator. He also has a slot at airborne school, and ambitions for ranger school. I thanked him for his willingness to serve and wished him well on what is to come.

@dratz picked me up at the airport. We cruised back to his house, then wandered over to Antonelli’s to score some cheese for some of the other Paradise Lost attendees. Mmm, cheese.

Lots of photos of cheese, plus more about the day, including bonus cat puke (more…)

[links] Link salad heads to Springfield to hear the word of God

How To Be CreativeThe image of the ‘creative type’ is a myth. Jonah Lehrer on why anyone can innovate—and why a hot shower, a cold beer or a trip to your colleague’s desk might be the key to your next big idea. I disagree with one of the premises of this article — in my fairly extensive observation of writers over the years, creativity comes far more easily to some people than it does to others. It is one of the many highly variable qualities of being a human being.

Austin, Proud of Eccentricity, Loses a Favorite — I remember this guy from when I lived there. (Via my Dad.)

A Keeper of a Vast Garden of Art in the Hills of Brazil

The Sombrero Galaxy in Infrared

Great Lakes ice coverage falls 71 percent over 40 years, researcher says — Amazing, the lengths liberals will go to in perpetuating the myth of climate change. Thank God we have Rush Limbaugh and the GOP to cloud those pesky facts.

Inhofe: God Says Global Warming Is A Hoax — Further evidence that conservatives are patently, absurdly crazy. This man is a respected GOP leader and major party figure.

Subject for Debate: Are Women People?I’ve always assumed that women are fully autonomous human citizens—who vote, even!—but now I’m not so certain. Ask your friendly neighborhood conservative. They’ll confirm the answer is ‘no’.

What’s wrong with Congress? It’s not big enough

Grim Meathook Future, English style — In which we learn that English conservatives are just as blinded to facts by ideology as American conservatives are.

Ignorance Is StrengthSo whenever you hear Republicans say that they are the party of traditional values, bear in mind that they have actually made a radical break with America’s tradition of valuing education. And they have made this break because they believe that what you don’t know can’t hurt them.

Gaffing His Way to VictoryNews alert: Romney is rich, but voters by and large don’t care.

?otd: Been to church lately?

Writing time yesterday: 1.5 hours (15 minutes of WRPA, Going to Extremes)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 8.0 (solid)
Weight: 237.6
Currently reading: 1491 by Charles C. Mann

[travel|personal] Home in the dark

Had a very nice morning yesterday. We wrapped the Paradise Lost conference, went out to lunch at Mangia pizza where we were joined by my friend @JDHancock and his family. Then off to the airport. I got some revision and WRPA done on the way home, and have one more short fiction commitment to address before I can get back to Kalimpura. I also finished reading J.A. Pitts’ untitled third Sarah Beauhall book in manuscript, and read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Anne Shaffer and Annie Barrows, which was stupidly charming and quite moving at the very same time. An thanks to some luck in making a standby flight, I got home at a decent hour instead of a horrid one last night. Still up a little later than ideal, but today will not be a disaster zone.

My luggage, however, did not make the standby flight, and remained at LAX when I flew home. I declined to accept a 1 am delivery, so I should see it sometime later this morning. Luckily I am home, so there’s nothing in the bags I need so badly it couldn’t wait overnight.

[info]tillyjane picked me up at the airport, and we talked about the death from cancer last week of our mutual friend as she drove me home. That was a moving conversation. Due to the vagaries of my travel schedule, I missed all of the memorial gatherings that took place over the weekend.

I still owe a post about last week’s ballooning attempt, and probably some kind of wrap-up on Paradise Lost. But I’m running tight for time this morning, so they shall have to wait for another day.

[personal|travel] Headed west once again

The Paradise Lost conference is wrapping up this morning. We had a great day yesterday, complete with a Howard Waldrop reading.

Howard Waldrop reading at Paradise Lost 2011 in Austin TX

That was followed by a party last night, and me being up til about midnight.

Nice long walk this morning, featuring roosters, owls, a whole host of morning birds and one very insouciant raccoon. Some more conferencing, then I hit the road for home. Won’t be in til about midnight West Coast time, which will be a bit rough on me.

I did manage to get two requested stories written this past week. One more to go, a little bit of WRPA, then I’ll be on to Kalimpura revisions. Feeling pretty good about all that.

Be well, write more, have fun today.

Photo © 2011, Joseph E. Lake, Jr.

Creative Commons License

This work by Joseph E. Lake, Jr. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

[travel|conventions] Hanging in Austin

I’m having a terrific time here at Paradise Lost in Austin. Thursday I flew in, had lunch with my aunt, then connected up with the folks here at the conference for a meet-and-greet followed by dinner at the Hyde Park Bar & Grill. Friday morning, I had breakfast with a friend, then we rolled into conference mode. First part of the day was manuscript critique, moderated by me. Then I gave a talk on writing through adversity which ranged into a number of subjects. We had an afternoon break, followed by another, less formal discussion on idea sizing, and one on agents and contracts. Then dinner at Chuy’s, where some more friend came by. Today, more critique, lunch at the Salt Lick, and a visit from Howard Waldrop.

Busy and fun.

I’m planning to make a post about Wednesday’ ballooning adventures, and lack thereof, but the Internet here at the hotel is pretty quirky, so I don’t want to try to deal with the problems of a long, complex post with a bunch of effort in Flickr. I’ll try to have that up for Monday if possible.

What are you doing this weekend?

[personal] Slipping through the week

Workie bits yesterday, and a day off from writing. I read some of more of J.A. Pitts’ Honeyed Words, did a bunch of homework supervision and assistance with [info]the_child, and had a social evening.

Today it’s more Day Jobbery, lunch with my parents, another hospital visit, more homework, and a bit more socializing. Plus I’ll jimmy in an hour or so of writing/WRPA.

The weekend will be full. I’m involved with [info]the_child all day Saturday, including the first lacrosse game of the season. Sunday I’m off to Omaha, where, weather permitting, there will be hot air ballooning late Sunday afternoon or possibly a day or two later. Thursday I head from Omaha to Austin for Paradise Lost, then home the following Sunday night.

Also, it’s just about last call for questions to be included in the reader interview with me [ | LiveJournal ]. I’ll be answering them over the weekend.

Got plans?