garden of iden

15 Favorite SF/F books...Today

A Facebook friend gave me a homework assignment. She asked me, casually, for a list of favorite sf/f books. She probably thinks I have forgotten or overlooked her request. Oh no, I was merely getting the other things that I am obsessing over out of the way first. Tonight this is what I am obsessing over, after the evening’s appointment television, of course. This list is my favorites tonight, in this mood, in this light when some of my shelves are blocked and I can’t see everything. I’m probably forgetting someone that’s Really Important. I decided to put the post at Livejournal because it appears it isn't possible to create Notes at Facebook anymore. Here goes. (You will notice I took the liberty of throwing in a few series and counted them as one title.)

Kage Baker – “The Company” stories starting with In the Garden of Iden
Emma Bull – War for the Oaks
Pat Cadigan – Mindplayers
Gail Carriger – the Parasol Protectorate starting with Soulless
Susanna Clarke – Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell
Storm Constantine – the Wraethu trilogy starting with The Enchantments of Flesh and Spirit
Greg Egan – Permutation City
Neil Gaiman – Neverwhere
William Gibson – Pattern Recognition
Ian McDonald – River of Gods
China Mieville – Perdido Street Station
Dan Simmons – Hyperion
Bruce Sterling – Holy Fire
Neal Stephenson – Cryptonomicon
Neat Stephenson – Snow Crash

Saturday is/was Read Comics in Public Day

tamiam alerted me to an unexpected day to celebrate: Read Comics in Public Day

Though I don't actually read all that many comics, this was an idea I could get behind (yes, please -- read anything in public) so I grabbed a Christmas present I got from an ex-boyfriend and headed off to Charlie's.

My reading matter was Berlin: City of Stones by Jason Lutes. I felt some chagrin in that this is exactly one of those "serious, black-and-white comics about war and art and history and social class" that the author of the article under my first link was chiding himself for unconsciously selecting to be seen with for his celebration of the day.

But see, this is exactly the kind that I should make an effort to sit down with. I find them kind of difficult to appreciate. There's no color and no fantastic beasties or landscapes to catch ones eye. It took something like this day to give it a try. So my thanks go out to John. His thought, that if it was about a) Berlin in b)the 1920s that I might want to check it out, turned out to be spot on. I'm about half-way through.

(no subject)

Reasons to watch this video: A) It's a mini-science fiction film that is B) set in an alternate 1920s (love the proto-Nintendo) and c) its soundtrack is a really fun tune.


Indica - Vuorien taa

I found some Finnish goth! I love this. Truly, I must, because I must have listened to it 10 times tonight with all the the places I've been posting this. Begging your pardon if you're among the ones getting a multiple posting.


Rest in peace, Lynn Redgrave 1943-2010

I count myself lucky to be among the people who saw her one-woman show, Shakespeare for my Father, when she brought it to Seattle in the early 90s. My favorite part was when she was talking about her crush on Richard Burton, who was a friend of her father's. "Ooooo Mr. Burton!" [hands flutter up by her face] But particularly about the time Burton came backstage to congratulate her on a performance. "I drew a chalk circle around the spot where he had stood, labeled it "Hallowed Ground" and no one was allowed to stand there for the rest of the run." I thought she was quite genuine and very, very human.

Just right for the season

Earlier today I picked up the second to the last copy of Twilight that was left in the video rental place. Now that I have come back from viewing the costumes up on Broadway, I am going to spend the rest of the evening in unabashed self-indulgence. As cupcake_goth says: Spaaaaarkly vampires.

Writer's Block: Confessions of a couch potato

What is the longest uninterrupted period of time you've ever watched TV? Were you alone or with a friend/partner? Do you tend to watch more TV when you're happy, depressed, or simply bored?

Because of the internet, I actually know the answer to this question: 10 hours on April 20, 2003. I was a regular poster, at the time, in a forum that was devoted to TV topics and the post I made about my marathon is still there. I begin: I feel like an AA member coming in to confess to a bender. The TV was on from when I came home from brunch to when I finally went to bed.

My viewing included a couple hours of Food network, a couple of archaeology shows on the Discovery channel, an episode of one of Michael Palin's travel documentaries, the first installment of the miniseries Helen of Troy, two episodes of Masterpiece Theater one in real-time, one taped and a documentary about terrorist attacks. I think this adequately illustrates how cable TV gives even the bookish an equal opportunity to be a couch potato. And how, if you really want to get things done, you probably shouldn't even own a television.

I like how I closed a post about my second-longest marathon (only 8 hours that time): The checks are still unwritten for my bills, my roots are still showing and I'm going to run out of energy in about half an hour. Just in case, during the week, I wonder what *did* I do with all that time I had on the weekend, here's my answer.

Wizard of Radio

On Sunday I listened to one of the best radio shows I've ever heard. Studio 360 did a whole show on the Wizard of Oz: books, movies and other spin-offs.

Particularly good are Salman Rushdie talking about "Somewhere over the Rainbow" and the coming about of and the differences in the Russian version of Oz. Go! Click! Listen! It's good stuff. And it is possible to just listen to parts of it.

Fun thing found in a book at work

From: Culture Shock! A Survival Guide to Customs and Etiquette: USA

Once you've accepted an invitation to a party, you must attend. If something happens to prevent you, telephone with your excuses as soon as possible. People work hard to give a party; you must remember that it's nearly always your hosts, not the servants, who have spent the day cooking and cleaning, and they can be very upset if you don't show up.