Musings on Stories

Musings on Stories

There's been some drama on twitter - and what else is new - involving how well a writer should know the canon and deep roots of one's culture, especially related to the genre an author chooses to write in. I'll preface this: I'm not a writer. First, Alexander Hellene's substack : Prerequisites. There's actually a lot to unpack here, but in many ways, the post hinges around this : A writer DOES have an obligation to understand the canon. You don’t have to like every single author in it. You d…

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Looking at Thune's Vision

Looking at Thune's Vision

I've gotten copies of Thune's Vision and Shagduk from the two respective Pilum Press Kickstarters, and oddly, it turns out you can now even order them from Target, if you really want to (please order them from Pilum, or even Amazon, but hey), and they have been worth every penny in production and quality, nevermind the storytelling. Since I'm wrapped up in several reads at the moment, I cannot do justice to Shagduk other than to say it started well, but I had to give some time and attention to…

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FakeN - Take 2

FakeN - Take 2

I don't keep a twitter account so it took me a while to stumble into this, but: > The book with the exciting cover is @JohnsonJeffro [https://twitter.com/JohnsonJeffro?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw]’s collection of literary criticism that helped kick off the #PulpRev [https://twitter.com/hashtag/PulpRev?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw] movement. The other one is an anthology of stories taken from Appendix N. Along with some personal additions the editor apparently felt like making. 1/11 pic.twitter.com/…

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Lovely People

Lovely People

I've written before about a webcomic called Stand Still, Stay Silent [https://thelastredoubt.com/stand-still-stay-silent/]. Love the artwork and storytelling on it. Unfortunately, I don't follow it daily, as only a few pages a week are released, so I often go a month or two before catching up, only to find myself waiting for the next installment yet again. It seems Minna, the artist and writer, has been busy with a new short comic/standalone story [https://www.hummingfluff.com/lovelypeoplecomi…

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Tenet

Tenet

A while back I said I would write of Tenet, and didn't - in large part for the selfsame reasons that John C Wright points out in the beginning of his multi-part review of the movie [https://www.scifiwright.com/2021/03/tenet-part-i/], that to say almost anything of it is to spoil it. I generally don't believe in spoilers, and the movie holds up to multiple viewings, but I also want to maximize how much of it is caught fresh the first time, so I'll try to stick with what is obvious, or at least st…

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Appendix N-

Appendix N-

It's always year zero for the social justice (and believing) set - so the events of but a few short years back, namely the nomination of Jeffro Johnson's Appendix N [https://arkhavencomics.com/product/appendixn/] to the Hugo slate, and being dismissed among other works and editors for being liked by the wrong people are already ancient history lost in the antiquity of time. And one surely cannot expect a writer for a prestigious outlet like Boingboing to do better than indian tech support, an…

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Traveller 5 - Why So Serious?

Traveller 5 - Why So Serious?

The other day I delved deeper into the T5 rules by showing how to develop a character [https://thelastredoubt.com/traveller-5-thoughts-and-characters/]. Yes, it came out complicated. Or is it? Let's step back a bit. The original classic Traveller character rules came from the era of Moldvay Basic and AD&D, but they had a different focus. D&D is class-based: you rolled your stats, chose a class compatible with those stats, and noted down the associated bonuses. You only had a few significant c…

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Traveller 5 - Thoughts, and Characters

Traveller 5 - Thoughts, and Characters

Marc Miller is a genius. Now, I'm not saying that T5, as incarnated, is going to be everyone's cup of tea, but going deeper into the wealth of tables available, the most relaxing thing about them is not that they are there when you need a quick and dirty lookup for something you didn't plan ahead of time, but that you can safely ignore them unless there is something going on that requires scientific/universe/random knowledge that doesn't naturally flow from the current state of the game world.…

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