miss_s_b: (Self: Profile)
2010-05-21 12:17 am
Entry tags:

[sticky entry] Sticky: Introduction & Comment policy

Hello! There now follow some handy hints on how to make the most of your Reading My Blog experience:
  • If you don't like my colour scheme (I am aware that many people don't) add "?style=light" to the end of any url to get a different version.
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Comments Policy:
  • Anonymous commenting is enabled, although anon comments are screened before publication; please, if you comment anonymously, give yourself a name/pseudonym/some form of identifier. If you don't your comment will not be unscreened.
  • I don't censor comments from people I know unless pushed VERY hard. Red lines include racism, misogyny, homophobia, unjoking advocation of violence, and being horrible about (or to) people I love. Anons tend to get a lot less leeway and a lot less benefit of the doubt; sorry. My blog, my rules.
  • If you want to point out cock-ups I have made, please direct them to Pedants' Corner; likewise if you want to ask me something off the topic of the post please go to this entry - this saves readers' scrolling fingers.
miss_s_b: (Fangirling: Books)
2016-02-09 12:35 pm
Entry tags:

Nom Nom Nom - this year I get to nominate Hugos

I have some ideas for some of the categories, but the problem is I will not nominate anything I am not personally familiar with, and there are some categories I have not read/seen/etc enough things in. So, I have nearly two months till deadline; I am going to ask for recs. What do YOU think ought to win awards in the following categories? Rec me stuff, I shall try to check it out, and then if I like it, it might get a nom from me:
Best Novella (between 17,500 and 40,000 words)

Best Novelette (between 7,500 and 17,500 words)

Best Related Work

Best Graphic Story

Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form)

Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form)

Best Semiprozine

Best Fanzine

Best Fancast

Best Fan Writer

Best Fan Artist

The John W. Campbell Award for new writers (1st published 2014 or 2015)
The categories I have left off are the ones I think I have enough things to nominate in without crowdsourcing stuff I might not have seen, but if there's an novels or short stories you genuinely think I might have missed, do drop those in the comments too. Obvs I might not get chance to check everything out, but I'll do my best.

Over to you lot! :)
miss_s_b: (Default)
2016-02-09 10:02 am
Entry tags:

My Entry for the Speccie's New National Anthem Competition

... which I suspect they won't publish:
(to the tune of Jerusalem)

And did the Brits
In Ancient time
Pinch all your country's wealth from you?
And did we pinch
Your words as well
To add to England's language true?
We shall pretend the world is ours
By some divine right or something
But really we're the bestest thieves
You see we even nicked this tune
If you want to have a go, you can find the details, such as they are, at the bottom of the page detailing the winners of their last competition.
miss_s_b: (Default)
2016-02-05 07:00 am

The Blood is the Life for 05-02-2016

miss_s_b: (Fangirling: Books)
2016-02-02 09:29 am
Entry tags:

Via Minnsy, ten books every child should read before they leave school

Minnsy complains, correctly in my view, about the recently released list of books that every child should read before they leave school. Dickens and Austen are great once you're already into reading, but that dense Victorian prose is not going to suck in a reluctant reader - and it's for that reason I'll be leaving all the Brontes, Conan Doyle, Mary Shelley and po' ol' Poe off my list, with the deepest regret. My picks are somewhat different from Minnsy's though:
  1. Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett - the first proper Pratchett, very accessible, hilariously funny, and will suck you in to the Discworld which, if you're like me, you'll never leave.

  2. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie - Christie's easy conversational style is a joy to read, and this book has one of her most famous twists.

  3. Matilda by Roald Dahl - I'm a firm believer in books about the magic of reading, and that's why this one.

  4. Inkheart by Cornelia Funke - for the same reason as Matilda.

  5. The Ghost Stories of MR James by MR James - I think it does a child good to have the crap scared out of them every so often, and James can even make bedsheets terrifying. Also, I genuinely think it's important for kids to learn that short stories can be excellent, and you do not need a 600-page tome to tell a good tale. And he's not technically Victorian.

  6. Oranges are Not the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson - another book to prick at the emotions, with some genuine laugh out loud moments. Also important for the queer kids (you are not alone) and the het kids (queer kids are normal). And once you've read it you can buy this poster.

  7. The Magician's Nephew by CS Lewis. Yes, that's right, not The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. The prequel. Not quite so heavy handed with the Christian allegory, but just as full of imaginative detail. I always liked Polly better than any of the Pevensie children, too.

  8. The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K Le Guin - does what all the best scifi does: poses a "what if?" and runs away with it.

  9. Fated by Benedict Jacka - because fantasy can be modern and set in a world we recognise, and populated by people we run into every day.

  10. Feminism is for Everybody by bell hooks - because it is, and everybody should read this book. You can get the .pdf of it here
miss_s_b: (Mood: Not London)
2016-02-02 09:16 am
Entry tags:

ATTENTION LONDON TYPES: I need a place to crash

... Anyone got space for a little one Friday the 19th and Saturday the 20th of this month? I'll bring my own toothpaste...

The nearer to Westminster the better, FYI. Got a lib demmy thing to go to.

(may be a while answering comments as work is concentratey this morning, but don't worry, I will get there)

ETA: now have offer, thanks folks :)
miss_s_b: (Default)
2016-01-27 07:00 am

The Blood is the Life for 27-01-2016

miss_s_b: (Default)
2016-01-26 07:00 am

The Blood is the Life for 26-01-2016

miss_s_b: DCI Gill Murray looking disapprovingly at her phone (feminist heroes: DCI Gill Murray)
2016-01-25 02:27 pm
Entry tags:

Why I am against All Women Shortlists (again) - a brief post tossed off on my lunch break

Look, I've gone over this lots of times before. The post from 2013 I link there lists seven pretty strong reasons to be against AWS; both principle (they're objectively wrong) and practical (they make the situation they purport to cure worse) reasons. If the party adopts AWS, I will be leaving.

Yes, something must be done about sexism. Yes, it's embarrassing that all our MPs are white men. That's because we've only got 8 of them. We had lots of women in "winnable" seats; the electorate didn't vote for them. We're really good at selecting women (or BAME or LGBT - we had one of each of those in Calderdale) candidates. Not so good at getting folk to vote for them. Also, we're really crap with the ableism - but working on it. AWS will do nothing to even pretend to address ableism, of course.

Just because "something must be done" DOESN'T MEAN THIS IS IT.

Apart from anything else, increasing the number of rich white heterosexual upper-middle class women at the top of our party will only salve bruised egos and make us have lady faces to put on the news, it will not increase diversity of thought or deed in any meaningful sense, and I am BLISTERINGLY angry that this hasn't got into thick heads yet. Have you people not been WATCHING the Labour party since they adopted this? The siloing of women into AWS seats so that the boys can have a free run. The promotion of women against LGBT and BAME candidates because once you've got one "minority" (and women are actually a majority) you HAVE diversity and don't need to worry. The tickbox culture.

And don't even get me STARTED on what this does to nonbinary folks - and Willie Rennie's clumsily worded "oh, we'll treat them like women" does NOT make me any happier on this.

I'm a feminist. I want to see an end to sexism. That is why I am against all women shortlists - papering over the cracks with a superficial non-solution doesn't solve sexism, it perpetuates it. Fuck that.