Archive for April, 2015

oh puppies, when will you learn how the internet works?

John Ringo wrote up a hilariously strawariffic post called “Understanding SJW logic and why it is destroying science fiction,” which James Nicoll linked to from his Livejournal. Mr. Ringo’s post got a lot of comments and… apparently got too embarrassing? So he deleted it. Or maybe it was an accident, who knows?

But either way, don’t worry, John, Google has your back. Or, if you’d prefer, there are always PDF archives, and here’s a big PNG.

And here’s the first page! Enjoy.

I’ll also update the previous deletions post with this, because yeah.

eta: John Scalzi responds to John Ringo’s deleted post.

recording session today

Roses and Ruin is a Leannan Sidhe album project. It’s akin to Cracksman Betty in that it’s single-day efforts, with only light production.

Unlike Cracksman Betty, it wasn’t ever wrapped up. And Leannan Sidhe is coming over today to record the first new track for the project since… I don’t even know. Quite a while!

It should be fun. It’s my first recording session in, like, five months. How the hell did that happen? Oh, right, releasing a major album, that’s right. It’s apparently time to get back on that pony.

Which… okay, long-time fans might just remember a song I’ve performed about four times ever called “Getting Away with It.” It’s this massive sprawling monster, probably a bit self-indulgent, crazily complex, all that. It was supposed to be on Dick Tracy Must Die, but I couldn’t get it to work like I knew it should.

Eventually I pretty much gave up on it, and it sat, half-forgotten, in the back of my lyrics books, my personal Don Quixote.

Then somebody asked me to play it after reading the lyrics at a Leannan Sidhe rehearsal. I had to struggle to remember how it even went, and I got the rhythm totally wrong in the verses, or did I, because in getting it so wrong, I think I see how I can get it to work.

I’m just glad I don’t have to work with Charlton Heston to find out.

Anyway, best get this posted. No rest for the wicked, after all. MINIONS! SET UP THE MICS!

because why not

I used to take a lot of flower pictures. No, really, lots. I haven’t as much lately, but still do once in a while. Sakura season is over, but have a recent memory of it:

edmund schubert bows out

John Scalzi has posted that Edmund Schubert, editor of Intergalactic Medicine Show, has pulled his name from Hugo consideration in response to the Puppies slates – most particularly, the Rabid Puppies version.

I have one thing I must, again, call out. Mr. Schubert predictably defends Orson Scott Card against the various people who have boycotted Mr. Card’s works on the basis of Mr. Card’s political activities, saying:

…when the Puppies say they feel shut out because of their politics, it’s hard for me to not empathize because I’ve seen IGMS’s authors chastised for selling their story to us, simply because of people’s perceptions about the publisher’s personal views. I’ve also seen people refuse to read any of the stories published in IGMS for the same reason. … The truth is that Card is neither devil nor saint; he’s just a man who wants to support writers and artists—and he doesn’t let anything stand in the way of that.

A man who wants to support writers and artists, and, incidentally, have a history of saying that queers should be illegal, and was still only a few short years ago actively working as a board member of a national organisation founded to fight LGBT equality.

Yeah, sure, he’s given up. He’s quit, he’s admitted he’s lost the fight. Not that he’s sorry, mind you; just that he’s lost. Regardless, people who defend Mr. Card keep eliding over that whole history, like it’s some sort of no-big-deal look-how-silly he was. Like personal politics shouldn’t matter at all, even when those personal politics involve making people like me illegal.

Edmund Schubert says he’s published queer authors in Intergalactic Medicine Show, and will continue to do so, and he says that’s with the full support of Mr. Card. Also stories by and of women, and various racial groups and religions. That’s good.

But I’ve got an assortment of assaults and a hospital visit and more money than I want to think about and years of lost time and decades of living in various degrees of fear all spent fighting for my legal and occasionally physical life against Mr. Card’s allies, and, to a lesser degree, Mr. Card himself. He and his friends on the social right have quite literally cost me and millions like me untold amounts of both blood and treasure.

And his erstwhile allies still are, across the globe, American fundamentalists exporting their religion of hate, getting execution laws passed, spreading the same lies they weren’t able to sell at home any longer.

So don’t expect that to stop mattering to me. And never, ever, dare tell me that it shouldn’t matter. Because, maybe, for you, it doesn’t have to. But to me? That’s quite a luxury. One I will never have.

eta: Hugo Award voting has commenced. I recommend voting for NO AWARD over any slated candidate this year, and voting for any and all candidates you think worthy above that line. I maintain that it is the only way we have of preventing being overrun by slates every year until and unless rules changes are made.

eta2: Rather belatedly, hello again, File 770 readers! Despite all the Hugo Award political slate posts as of late, I’m mostly a geek musician; you can play our new album with the gadget in the upper left, or pick tracks on Bandcamp. Welcome!

about 95% back up

Hey, Apache, thanks for making 2.4 configs massively incompatible with 2.2 config files! Thanks for that! That’s so awesome. #fuckeverything

We’re about 95% back up. Let a minion know if something explodes.

yep, the blog is unhappy

The blog is very unhappy at the moment. As is the webserver, really. Hi, it’s 3am cascadian time and dist-upgrade was NOT our friend today. Not even a little. We’re working on it.

last call for the secret blog discount, but first call for…

Last call for the Secret Blog Discount sale! All pay things on Bandcamp – meaning all music, and both Free Court of Seattle novels in paperback – are 25% off with this checkout code which expires TODAY!


But! There’s a surprise sale on Amazon for author Angela Highland’s other books. Carina Press didn’t notify her, they just did it. So if you’re interested in her other series – the Rebels of Adalonia novels – Valor of the Healer is a staggering 99¢ right now. G’wan, get it – at 99¢, it’s not even really splurging.

new raptor

With a new Raptor-class shuttle comes new landing tolerances. I didn’t have the traditional tennis ball, so I just used a bit of old muppet pelt.

I sure could use some help counting to four!

And if you’re in the Seattle area, the surplus one’s up for sale.

some things which leapt out at me

A couple of impressions leapt out at me from the Norwescon 38 panel photos posted on Facebook on Friday. It’s only a small number of photos – eight pictures, representing seven panels. One of those panels was one of my nwcMUSIC panels; “What the Frak is Filk?” if I remember correctly.

First, let’s get one big thing said up front; I don’t want to make undue guesses about race, but at least in photos, this looks like Mighty Whitey Incorporated. That’s a problem.

But also, let’s talk about this:

        men          women      recognisably gender-variant
         1             0                   0
         3             1                   0
         5             0                   0
         3             0                   0
         2             2                   0 **
         1             2                   0
         0             1                   0
        15             6                   0

**: One of mine; I actively work to gender-balance nwcMUSIC panels.

Now, I work this con. I’ve worked it for years. I know the last couple of heads of programming. I know they’re trying not to do this – moreover, they’re trying specifically not to do this. And Programming Head has told me that the list of attending pros and performers actually is roughly equal. So in reality: they aren’t doing this.

And yet, despite all those facts, here are the numbers we see represented in these photos:

Excluding single-person panels (one reading, one workshop):
          Male panelists: 14
          Female panelists: 5
          Women are 26.3% of panelists.

Including single-person panels:
          Male panelists: 15
          Female panelists: 6
          Women are 28.6% of panelists

Multiperson panels, majority male: 3
Multiperson panels, majority women: 1
Panels gender-balanced: 1
          Women are a majority in 20% of panels;
          Men are a majority in 60%.

In majority-female panels, 33% of panelists are men.
In majority-male panels, 8% of panelists are women.

Excluding single-person presentations/workshops:
          Panels without men: 0
          Panels without women: 2

Including single-person:
          Panels without men: 1
          Panels without women: 3

Sure, it’s a small number of photos, of a small number of panels. But it’s what’s posted. It’s what’s online right now.

And remember all those things I’ve talked about, how 17% women is representationally balanced and 33% women is seen as kind of being ‘mostly women’? Well…

Again, and I really want to stress this, these are not representative. But that’s kind of the point: they aren’t representative, but you can’t tell that from the photos. The reality doesn’t show up here.

What does show up here are the choices made about which panels to photograph and which photographs to post. From a record-of-events standpoint, a perceived history standpoint, those choices override the reality.

And that’s called erasure. Not in a big way; in a very small way, in fact. A grain of sand, striking a mural on a wall. But one grain of oh so many.

I do not believe or even suspect for a second that the photographers or the social media group did this shifting on purpose. I truly, genuinely, do not. Do not go after them.

But the numbers say that it happened nonetheless. I didn’t go looking for it; it leapt out at me, and then I did the numbers to see whether I was making it up. I wasn’t. And so it proceeds.

This comes in a context. I was just reading about studies showing that two and three year old children play with gender-assigned toys when adults are around, but that they play freely across toy gender boundaries when they think adults aren’t watching.

That’s how ingrained this is, that’s how deep it runs, and how early. Two-year-olds get it. You don’t need conscious sexism, or even adult- or teen-acquired sexism. It’s taught so early that the erasure is unconscious and automatic.

But still taught. Not instinctive, as the shift in playing habits shows. Taught. And learned.

An interview at Norwescon

Hey, the good folks at Wyldstyle Radio interviewed me about participatory culture and geekmusic at Norwescon during nwcMUSIC 2015, and they’ve let me know that they’ll be airing it Saturday evening! It’s scheduled for 5pm Cascadian/Pacific (6p Mountain, 7p Central, 8p Eastern). I haven’t heard it yet, so somebody listen in and let me know how I sounded, ok? (⌒▽⌒)

Saturday April 25th, 5pm Cascadian/Pacific

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